Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Five Fingered Frugal Momma

Whenever I take the kids shopping, I try to impress them with frugality.

I teach them how to read the little stickers beneath the products to compare price per ounce, not just price.

Spotting a clearance sign, basket or aisle has become almost as exciting as spotting a garage sale sign.

The Sunday paper is an economic lesson, as I've  taught them how to use coupons and compare sale ads.

I've even taught them to not be swayed by "marketing propaganda." A company will charge $1-$3 more for an item, like toothpaste, if there is a cartoon character on it.  If it is something we eventually throw away, it doesn't matter what the label looks like.

I've taught them to beware of the last ditch effort on the part of stores to come between parents and their money, by stationing candy and toys in the checkout aisle.

We try out generics whenever possible, unless the product is inferior to the point of being a poor value.

They are warned about letting their money "burn a hole in their pocket" - spending money just because they have it.

My children need to be wise with money. They need to value money that is earned and given, and spend it discerningly.

I want them to be able to leave my house and be able to function successfully with or without money.

I think I overwhelmed 4 year old Beka on an extensive Target shopping trip a few years ago.

She buckled into her carseat, then leaned back into the chair, exhaling in frustration.  She was quiet and I knew her little brain cogs were churning.

With an imaginery drum roll in my mind, I waited.

Finally, from the backseat, came her little voice.  “Maw-aw-aw-aw-aw-m."

You know the longer it takes them to say your name the more thought they have put into it, or the more money they need.

"Yes, Rebekah?"

"Is it cheap to steal?"

I educated her on an aspect of shopping  I had neglected to cover,  shoplifting.

This frugal Momma loves all discounts, sales and bargains, except the five-fingered kind.


  1. It sounds like you've covered it - unknowingly. The fact that she knew to ask you if it was "cheap to steal" or wrong to steal...

    You've taught her well. To be aware of her heart, like that? It's soft and teachable - that's for sure. I'd give her a High-FIVE for that one. ;)

  2. What a good conversation, one I am afraid many never have with their children.

    We also teach frugality, but with a twist. We teach them to save so we can give more, more to orphans, more to the poor, more to the missionaries we support monthly...how Americans waste so much money on stuff, stuff that will never make them happy or fulfilled once it is bought. And how little so many in the world have, and how God loves a generous giver!

    We also teach our children to tithe with their money-the first 10% always goes to God. Actually we teach them that 100% of it is His, but that He kindly asks only for the first 10%.

    May you be blessed as you teach yours...

    mama to 8
    one homemade and 7 adopted

  3. Kimmie, I love your additional thoughts to my blog! We practice this, but I don't know that I have really had the conversation that you have had with your kids. Thanks for provoking us to love and good deeds with your thoughts!


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