Tim and I have been tasked with an amazing responsibility. We are parents to 3 sweet children, and we have a duty to God to raise them to fear and honor Him with their lives through their character and values. While we joke about how our political views rub off on them (both our boys, ages 4 and 5, when they see a picture of Obama, will automatically say, "Look! It's the guy who takes our money!"), we consider it our moral responsibility to guide them and teach them to be responsible people with a deep respect for their God, their country, and their neighbor. We are trying to show them that hard work is rewarded and that laziness is not. There are many-a-lesson about grace in our home (Max once said to his dad as he was about to get a spanking, "Can I have grace again this time?" Nope. And, I actually think what he wanted was mercy, but we hadn't gotten to that lesson yet...). They have to earn and save their money. They respect human life. They love guns and can't wait to hunt with dad.
We are trying to raise little conservatives.
I'm thinking this post would be best as part of a "series". There is just way too much here. Tonight I will start with how we are teaching our kids about fiscal responsibility. This is a new one in our home, because the boys are just starting to realize about the value of money (Gracie's not there yet). Max is very concerned about having a twenty-dollar-bill. Sheesh. I don't think I ever had more than a few quarters at his age. We've started a system in our house for the boys to earn money. They have a chart and for each item (caring for the dog, making their bed, not teasing, etc) they either get a smiley or they get nothing. The first week we implemented it, I decided to give a quarter for each smiley. Bad idea. Bad math on my part. By the end of the week, I owed Max $11 and Charlie $10.25. I've lowered their wage to ten cents per smiley.
Here's a little conservative 101 that they're learning...They only get the reward when they do the work. Max's work doesn't count for Charlie and vice-versa. We don't "give" any of one boy's earnings to the other boy who doesn't do as well that week. Amazing concept.
We are also able to teach them about giving with this little exercise. Max is usually the one earning the most money. It's a personality thing. There have been times when we've given him the choice to give to his brother. Sometimes he chooses to give, sometimes he doesn't. BUT, we don't make him.
We want our children to be cheerful givers, and I'd like to share a little story about this to close this post. We have a non-profit called, "Online for Life". Basically, we save babies using the Internet. Awesome stuff. Well, my sweet boys are just about as passionate about it as we are, and the other day, one of them walked up to me with a coin in his hand and said, "Mommy, I'd like to give this money to help save the babies." Priceless...it's the type of moment that makes my heart soar as a mommy.