Pay Day

So today is my son’s first day of summer vacation from school.  He has already bumped up against boredom several times so far.  Perfect!  “Why are you working?”  he asks.  “Hey buddy, just because you don’t have school doesn’t mean I don’t have work!  This is what summer is for; for you to get bored and figure out creative stuff to do!”   Amidst our dealings there have already been several low-level, kind of whiny demonstrations on the home office floor.  I even got a, “School plans are stupid, human plans are stupid and God’s plans are stupid!”  I’m like, “OK buddy.  Whatever you say.”  (Thank you “1-2-3 Magic!”)

Then I devised the great idea of giving him his FIRST JOB.  Household trash cans.  So we went through a training of going around the house and collecting the 5 small cans of refuse into a bag.  He even had the initiative to see this through all the way downstairs into our building’s trash room.  Excellent!  For this we are instituting his first PAY, AND his first ALLOWANCE. (Not to be conflated, right?).  After discussion with Daddy Love, here is what we came up with.

50 cents (in quarters), as a fee for his JOB, once a week.  And what you *earn* cannot be taken away.  Plus 50 cents (in dimes) for being a responsible member of the family.  And this *can* be docked (eg; ten cents at a time), as a consequence for undesired behaviors (or -as suggested in 1-2-3 Magic, the parenting book about which I hope to blog soon- for not performing duties… of which he really has none to speak of as of yet).

Lastly, for his allowance and fee, we have designated a specific piggy bank of his choice, this doggy one.  And he has 100% discretion over how this $ should be spent (unlike the contents of other piggy banks which contains random $$ streamed to him from the universe, which can now more or less go into a savings account or the like, to accumulate until he is old enough to assume discretion over that as well).  I am relieved because although I have fervently wanted to help lay the foundation for fiscal literacy in my kids, I didn’t really know where to begin with the piggy banks and the real bank, and what to designate he should save (and for *what* and how long exactly), and what to designate he can spend as recklessly as a five year old heart desires.

The one I picked up at a garage sale for him when he was still in my belly!

 I picked this up at a yard sale when he was still in my belly

Meanwhile, I also impressed upon him that the responsibility for GETTING paid lies squarely with him.  That although I will do my best to remember, it is up to him really to remind me, to see that he gets paid.  We picked Monday as Pay Day (convenient, as today is Monday, right after I *I* do much of my own earning on weekends.)  He even suggested he write me a note on Mondays and leave it by my bedside.  I said, “Great!  You know what that’s called??  An INVOICE!   That’s how you remind people to pay you.  And sometimes without it you don’t even get paid!”  (Am I sickening you yet?  I can just hear my mom groaning.  Sorry folks; just doing what all parents do and compensating for what we wish *we* had growing up.)

To remind himself to *invoice* me so to speak, he wrote “Pay Day” on all the Mondays in his calendar through December.  In doing this he also discovered that, yes, he *will* be going back to school in September (“DARN IT!”), yet there are TWO whole months of summer between now and then  (“How long is two months?”), and that there are *28* of these magical Pay Days coming this year.  And how much $$ is THAT?  Wow, right?

28 Pay Days scheduled this year

OK so I’m a nerd.  Too bad.  I’m super psyched.  NOT ONLY THAT, but how do you think I’ve managed to eek out this blog post just now?  Well, my dear boy seems to have pushed through the boredom threshold by making THIS:

2013-06-24 Pay Day (1)

Duplo Farm! (shout out to my new fave blog: Pasyon Road Farm)

And now he is doing THIS:

Making playdough furniture for the cardboard house he just "built"

Making playdough furniture for the cardboard house he just “built”

One more shot, because he takes my breath away:

It's like looking at my son

It’s like looking at my son

OK, that’s a wrap on desk time for me today.  The kid DOES deserve to go outside, don’t you think?  Bien sur.  Moi aussi.  A bientot!


About circuskitchen

performing artist, mom, wife, daughter, sister, aunt, niece... just a regular extraordinary person
This entry was posted in childhood, domestic life, faith, family, forgiveness, health, love, mental health, parenthood, patience, work and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to Pay Day

  1. Mary Margaret says:

    Well done, Mom! Thanks for sharing.

  2. paysonroadfarm says:

    I am glad I looked you up today- I was sure I was following your blog, but apparently wasn’t (resolved!) and I missed when you posted this one. Trés cool that Gavin is make-believing about farmy-things! 😀
    And the budgeting- ❤ !! Exceptional!
    Both Clara Jane an Gavin seem incredible. It's so much fun that I get to follow you guys on here!

  3. Just keep your eyes locked on Payday, kiddo. No matter how hard it gets, there’s always another one comin.

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