Thursday, July 21, 2011

Modern-Day Lemonade Stand

Every Tuesday and Thursday our local Michaels craft store has a free kids' craft.  We started going a few weeks ago and the kids just love it.  I love it also, because it combines my three favorite things: craft stores, kids, and getting out of the house!

A couple of weeks ago we were walking up and down the aisles just looking at all the crafting possibilities when the kids spotted something that made me physically cringe.  FACE PAINTS!  Oh the horror!  I could just imagine waking up to find that they had painted the dog, or Lauren's dolls, or even MY face without my knowledge.  And since I have a hard time saying no to my children when they're behaving, I figured that we would be going home with these awful face paints that day.  However, much to my delight and the childrens' sadness, the little box of face paints cost $13!!! WAY was I spending that kind of money on something I was going to have to wash out of my carpets!  But being the brilliant mom that I am, I didn't say no.  What I actually said was much more insightful.  It went something like this:

"Well guys, that face paint is very expensive.  It costs $13!  <gasp>  That's just too much money for me to spend today.  But I tell you what.  You guys can save your money until you get $13 and then we'll come back and buy it!"

They totally fell for that little genius idea, so home we went.  And I didn't hear another word about face paints all day.

The next morning I was awakened to Lauren asking me if she and Braden could have a lemonade stand to make their $13.  I explained to her that selling lemonade doesn't usually net such a great profit, so not to expect too much, but that we could set it up after lunch.  The kids were overjoyed and I was equally NOT as thrilled.  But, it's not about me (again), so I sucked it up and we had a lemonade stand.

For about the first 30 minutes or so the kids had NO customers.  That's the downside of living on a quiet street.  Then, one by one the favors I called in started to arrive.  I explained to each of our friends who came for lemonade that the kids were saving up to buy some face paints and that by having this lemonade stand they were learning the value of money.  But after the third friend left our house I had to keep my mouth shut.

It's kind of hard to teach kids the value of a dollar whenever you have very generous friends and neighbors who are over paying for tiny glasses of lemonade!  The kids raked in over $7 in the course of an hour.....better than minimum wage right?  Good grief!  So, now that they were half way to their goal, they started to get really motivated.

The kids spent the next week relieving Jason and I of any change we might have on us and putting it with their lemonade money.  They turned into really good scavengers!  Or maybe it would be more accurate to call them pirates, because most of the money they "found" was taken off of dressers where it was technically just resting overnight.

Yesterday we took their jar of change into the bank to turn it into "real money."  They easily turned their $7 into $61.

Suffice it to say, we had fun painting their faces today. :)  And the rest of the money will be split between the two of them and placed in their savings accounts.

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