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Posts tagged with: money

Parents’ Attitudes About Finances & Kids

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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!


Plans?

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Do we have huge plans to spend, spend, spend?

Well…

No.

Actually, not much will change for us. Most of the money we were using to pay down debt now goes to fund daycare costs for the little tyke. The leftover amount will go toward a larger emergency fund. Fortunately, we are on our way since the tax refund was higher than what we owe. We are looking at saving for a car since mine is fairly small. We would like to have a slightly larger vehicle by the time baby number two comes along – no, I’m not pregnant… I just like being prepared.

We are planning on evaluating our March budget but I can’t imagine it will change much. We are planning a vacation… camping again. And a trip out of town… funded by my company for training. But we’ll see…


Passing Down Traits…

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After picking up my son, I arrived home tired from work last night. I schlepped off my formal work clothes and donned an oversized t-shirt, sweat pants, and fluffy pink slippers. Just thinking about making dinner was making me drag.

Baby boy started fussing a little, hungry for his dinner. I looked at him, smiled, and started asking him if he was hungry.

Asking him while singing in an opera voice.

I didn’t even realize I was doing it until about the fourth time singing, ‘AaaaaaAAAaaAAaaare you HuuuuUUUUuuuungry BoyyyyYYYYyyyYYY?’

I don’t sing opera. Um. Hubby would like to say I can’t sing at all. And before baby Cash was born, you wouldn’t catch me singing…ever. But here I was, standing in my living room, singing in an opera voice to my son.

And then I choked.

I have turned into my mother.

My whole life, my mother sang in an opera voice to children. I don’t think she’s capable of speaking to them, only singing. And I realized, I’ve picked up a lot of traits from my mother. That got me thinking, what traits will I pass to my children? I want them to be good, kind hearted, giving, etc. But what will they find themselves doing that says ‘I’ve turned into my mother!’? What stands out about me?

Will it be my goodness? My kindness? My giving?

Ha.

I have a feeling Cash will be standing in the snack aisle screaming ‘I WILL NOT buy you!!’ to the Lays potato chips when he’s thirty.

I’ve got to start being the person I want my son to become.

I may never shake the singing thing… but maybe that’s not a bad thing. It reminds me that tiny little eyes are watching.


Eek! Healthcare!

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I’ve been hanging on budget wise by the hair on my chinny chin chin. Added healthcare and daycare eat up everything we were applying to debt. Add diapers, wipes, and therapeutic wine, and the budget is pretty tight.

I’d been holding on, waiting to hit my milestone year at work. Once past the milestone, healthcare costs are greatly reduced – we’re talking a couple hundred a month.

…Until they released the 2012 rates and took away milestone benefits for longtime employees. My benefit package is nearly $200 more than I budgeted each month.

Sure, I get it. Healthcare costs are skyrocketing and I can’t expect my employer to cover it, but I was oh so sad to hear about the rate adjustment.

Hubby and I have to sit down and take a hard look at what we can adjust. I’m just hoping for a raise to clear the difference so we won’t have to cut the food budget. I’m not ready for a season of Ramen… again.


Scary D.I.Y. Project…

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My parents purchased five tiny pine trees from the grocery store and planted them in their front yard…30 years ago.

I don’t know if my father didn’t realize how HUGE the trees would get or if he simply didn’t think he’d still be living in the home 30 years later, but they took over the front yard. He was forced to cut them down one by one as snow storms threatened to push them onto the house but two remained.

One of the trees was leaning precariously toward the house and would unlikely survive another winter season. My father is stashing cash for his start-up and couldn’t spend the money on a tree service so my husband and brothers decided they’d take the task on.

Not realizing my husband was planning on flirting with danger, I didn’t activate his disability insurance policy. We’ve been shopping around and haven’t nailed one down yet. Eek. I was out shooting photos and shouting, ‘Please don’t get hurt! We’ve got NO INSURANCE!!!’

Remarkably they got the tree down without injury (this proves there IS a God) and my parents have enough firewood to take them into 2020.


How’d Work Go?

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I know it’s not necessarily debt related – other than it’s where I get money to pay down debt – but I thought I’d share how my first week back at work went.

The first day was easier than I thought. I was so focused on getting ready, getting him fed, and packing supplies, I didn’t really have the time to get depressed about leaving. At work, I was overwhelmed with meetings and projects, and didn’t even have time to eat lunch.

The second day was when everything hit. The nerves had settled and I couldn’t make it out the door without crying.

I’ve regretted the decisions I’ve made about money in the past, but nothing makes you more miserable than the realization that your money decisions are keeping you from the things you love most.

BUT, I am so grateful to my husband who works lots of overtime so I have a few months of working part-time. I’m not quite sure how I got so lucky to be married to him, but you can bet both he and baby get lots of hugs these days.


School, Family, & Money

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My husband has been in school since we married… well, even before we married… and we will have been married 7 years this fall. It’s only been a few weeks since he graduated and I’m really enjoying having him around. It still feels a bit weird to have him home every night and not in school, studying, or working on a project.

He was considering going back to school this fall to get a few more certificates and licenses that would allow him to take on larger side projects, and in turn, make us more money. While beach camping, lulled by the relaxing waves, we talked about his desire to continue on with his education. I admire him for always looking out for us as a family and keeping our finances afloat but I asked for a small break. Yes, I understand that my decision to request a delay in pursuing a specific license will have an immediate impact on our finances but, we’ve been hanging on without it for this long, we can hang on a few more months.

He’s going back…just not right now.

Best decision for our finances? Not a chance.

Best decision for our family? I think so.


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