A couple of weeks ago I was asked to take part in a campaign about helping my children to save money. I agreed straight away as teaching My Three the importance of saving is something that I feel really passionate about. We were sent some products to help us save, the boys absolutely love their new Piggy Bank, especially as it counts all the money that you have put inside it.
When I was younger we never had much money, we never had the best or most expensive of anything but we got by, we never went without and we were taught that if we wanted something we had to work hard and earn it – I bought my own computer when I was 16 by working all summer and saving my wages from my holiday park job. I won’t lie I used to be jealous of my friends who always had top designer trainers and clothes, who always had the “in” toys and always got a new bike for Christmas but knowing I had worked to buy my own computer gave me so much more satisfaction than any present they bought me ever could. I have to admit that now I’m a little hopeless with money and do have a small amount of debt (all unavoidable with University and having to move into my own house after my parents split up) but I do make sure that the boys know that although they do have nice toys, clothes etc these things are bought and paid for and should be looked after properly. I have to say that most of the time they do look after the things they own.
Christmas has only just gone but the boys have already been asking for new toys and games for their consoles if they have been really good at school then sometimes we will buy them a treat but as they seem to be asking more and more we decided that for the month of February they should try to save up the money themselves to buy the game instead. We decided that between them if they saved £15 in February they would have enough to buy the video game they wanted. We also sat down and used the Pocket Money Calculator to show how much money they would save if they saved up all their pocket money. They were surprised to know that they would have £156 in December if they didn’t spend any of it.
As they’re getting that little bit older we have said that they can have some pocket money. The condition of earning £1 a week each is that they keep their rooms tidy and put their clean washing away. If the rooms are messy or they don’t put the clothes away they don’t get their pocket money. Many of my friends think that we are mean and should just give them the money anyway but like I have said they will never learn the importance of money if they just expect to get it when they ask for it. This will be starting from this weekend – so they have a full week to make sure their room is tidy before inspections on Friday evening.
This week the boys have already saved £3 due to Nathan keeping the tooth fairy very busy as he has lost 2 teeth and at £1 a tooth he has had a little windfall over the weekend. He put his coins in the piggy bank. James on the other hand has been stalking his dad for loose change (Matthew always empties his pockets on to the bedside table) and found another £1 in loose change in our bedroom. Callum wrote on their wall chart to show that they had saved £3.
Each week during February we will be showing you how much money the boys have managed to save and/or spend using the A3 wall chart that we were sent from Family Investments.