Sunday, August 03, 2014

Saving Up for Bubbles

While running errands recently the boys spotted a toy store and insisted on a visit. We told Riker how much money he had in his platypus bank and that he could choose to spend it at the toy store if he found something he liked. After several rounds through the whole store, Riker settled on a fan powered bubble blower that was within his budget.

Even though Riker has been saving up coins for some time, he's only recently found pleasure in spending them on trinkets and vending machines. We try to guide his buying choices to things he might enjoy for more than ten minutes but we also allow him some freedoms in choosing how to spend his money. He can also be quite generous which is nice to see. For example, when I paid cash for Ari's toy rooster at the toy store but was twenty five cents short, Riker kindly offered to give me the money. However, he also has an excellent memory and the next day he asked for it back again. When he does purchase a handful of candy from a machine, he generally offers a piece to each of us.

So just for fun and because we're loving this warm summer weather , a series of bubble blowing photos...

Until this experience, we'd been encouraging Riker to save up the coins in his platypus bank to buy bigger toys like Thomas and Friends play sets and trains. He was able to buy several nice (and durable) toys in this manner that he still plays with today.

I cringe somewhat now that Riker wants to spend his quarters on junk in machines at gas stations or on silly games at the bowling alley, but I'm still working out the balance as to how much control I exert in his spending habits. 

How about you? Do you regulate how your children spend their pocket money? Do you guide their choices or do you let them choose freely and learn about the value of money from experiencing the feeling of having spent it all (while also enduring the subsequent torrent of dismay that frequently follows)?

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