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Posts tagged with: kids

I Am Thomas Magnum


When we first became serious about this debt reduction thang we decided that cutting out cable would be an easy first step.  Honestly, it wasn’t just about saving money though.  I had become more and more unhappy with the type of things my girls were watching, and the shows my husband and I watched had to be viewed when the girls were out of earshot.  They watched a lot of Disney, which sounds like it would be okay, but the more I paid attention to the Disney channel the more I noticed an unsettling theme.  On all the shows that my girls watched the parents were made out to be bumbling fools that the children could “get one over on”.  There are a dozen other reasons I didn’t care for cable but the bare bones of it is that it seemed like getting rid of it could benefit us both monetarily and keep our girls from getting messages that we didn’t care for.

The cable package we had was pretty basic and cost about $65 a month.  After we got rid of the cable we relied on Netflix and Redbox for our television. There is still stuff on Netflix that I don’t want them watching but I feel, somehow, like I’m more aware of what they are watching and can put a stop to things I don’t like sooner than I did before.  It’s been almost a year of being cable free and it’s worked fairly well.  My girls had Disney withdrawals for a few weeks but then settled into the Netflix offerings and were pretty satisfied.

It started out innocently enough.  We’d watch Family Ties or My Little Pony.  Then, the unimaginable happened.  My husband started watching Magnum, P.I..  Do ya’ll know how many episodes there are of Magnum, P.I.? A lot.  We watched a couple of episodes every single night for, I swear, at least a couple of months. I’m all for 80’s television but, oh my goodness.

Picture this:  it’s Easter, a couple of weeks ago, and there are children playing, adults sneaking candy out of aforementioned childrens’ baskets, and everyone having a wonderful time.  Then, all the kids start playing with some play mustaches that they got in their baskets.  It’s all fun and games until I see this:


and I hear, “No, I am Thomas Magnum!!!”  Ya’ll, my 11 and 8 year old daughters both had mustaches on and were arguing over who looked more like Thomas Magnum.  At one point my oldest daughter yelled “Higgins!” to prove that she was the one that was the most worthy.  The other kids were so confused.

Now I ask you, is it worth $65 a month to have your children turn into Tom Selleck impersonators?  My husband thinks so, and I grudgingly agree.


Parents’ Attitudes About Finances & Kids


T. Rowe Price Just Released its 6th annual “Parents, Kids & Money Survey.”  For the past three years I have read this survey and I like it because I believe that teaching my kids good money habits is a crucial and important parental responsibility.  And as I look at the results of the survey, I can usually get an understanding of how other parents are handling this situation.

Some of these results really caught my eye and made me ponder:

  1.  Just about half the parents that were surveyed use money to encourage good behavior from their kids.  This is something I am very against, I don’t plan to give our kids money for good grades and I surely won’t use money to try to buy off bad behavior.  These are qualities that are expected in my household.  Same goes for chores.  Now  I totally believe that I should give my children money and teach them the responsibilities that come with said money.  I just haven’t decided on how to go about doing this just yet.  My sister is actually fighting with her son right now, because my parents gave him $50 for straight A’s on his report card.  He expects his mother to pay him $75 for doing so.  My nephew is 10 years old!
  2. Thirty percent of parents raid their kids’ piggy banks.  Wow!  This is simply astounding to me, but maybe I am just reading into all wrong.  Maybe it is more innocent than it sounds – the pizza guy is knocking on the door and you realize you have no cash for a tip.
  3. Sixty One percent of children shop online – including 54 percent via mobile apps.  The immediacy of online shopping is making the world into something totally different.  We already know that our grandparent’s time was for saving, and now this society is all about spending.  But this is turning into a whole new ballgame with mobile apps that tend to prompt spontaneous spending.  Kids definitely think of currency differently than we did growing up due to so many transactions being digital now a days.
  4. 74% of parents admit to being reluctant to talk with their kids about financial topics.  The primary reason was that their didn’t want to have their kids worrying about finances.
  5. More than half of kids expect their parents to pay for most or all of college.
  6. Parents are open to finances being taught in schools:  87% of parents agree that it would be appropriate for kids to learn about financial matters in school.  The fact that it is not, leads me to believe many things.

Now there were much more discussed in the press release.  I suggest reading it and telling me what you all think was important findings in this survey!