Allowance, Spending vs. Saving, and My 4 Year Old

It has begun in the Suter home. We are giving our kids an allowance now. There is a good chance we are not doing it right, but we reserve the right to change the rules. 🙂

CJ, in particular has been excited about getting an allowance. He had saved up $7.00 and was ready to make his first purchase. He had been talking about getting a Ninja Turtle toy at the store. Before he had a chance, though, I took him to a garage sale.

You know what’s about to happen don’t you? He saw a whole bag of toys for just $4.00. It had several wrestlers and a transformer. Very tempting.

CJ wanted it.

I grabbed the bag, leaned down in front of him and explained his options. I told him he could buy this bag of toys. He had enough money. However if he bought these toys, he would not be able to buy the other toy he also wanted.

CJ thought about it for a bit. So hard! You want two things but you can’t have both and one of them you can have right now!

What would you do? What do you do? It is so difficult to wait for the better when you have something good staring you in the face.

I was so proud of my son. CJ walked away from the garage sale empty handed. No, I did not take him to the store. He went to bed that night with no new toy.

It will be interesting to see if this becomes a trend for CJ. I am going to try and encourage it while still giving him the choice. I believe when we learn to wait rather than act impulsively, good things happen. And yes, he did get his Ninja Turtle later. Not only did he earn it, he waited for it.

What do you need to wait for? Are you a spender or a saver? Talk to me in the comments section.

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  1. Trevor

    I would certainly recommend reading “Smart Money Smart Kids”. There’s a great section on paying kids and navigating these kinds of teachable moments.

    June 10, 2014
  2. adamsuter

    Thanks! I actually bought it, thanks to you. Haven’t read it yet. On my list.


    June 10, 2014