52 | 2012 - Music

I'm going to do a 2fer here and do a blog post from this summer which it seems I will never get caught up on which happens to coincide with this weeks Linked theme...Music

In August Samantha had the opportunity to go to Suzuki music camp in Las Vegas.  It was a great experience and she learned so much.  Jenny Jackson, Sam's teacher was one of the instructors and made it possible for Sam to go.  She stayed at my parents house and Miss Jenny got Sam to and from camp everyday since I couldn't come into town every single day.  
 On Friday they had a concert and played for all the families.  I was so impressed with how much she learned in such a short period of time, now if only I could get her to practice her dang violin now that we are back in the swing of school and things!! 
Don't forget to check out my other friends linked photos this week-


The Family Economy

I have been stressing and fretting for quite some time now about how to teach my children to become responsible contributing members to society.  I worry that they will continue through life with the same sense of entitlement that the rest of today's youth seems to have.  I'm sorry young people but you do not have the RIGHT to an education, you have to work for it! Seeing the government handouts and bail outs teaches my kids that you don't have to work hard to live comfortably and that is the wrong message to send. I believe that there is pride in a job well done and a sense of achievement is important in developing a sense of self worth.  I have observed in my own home that when my kids work for something and have to use their own money they actually take care of it and if something happens to it the devastation is so much greater.  When it's something that mom and dad bought then hey..."mom and dad will just buy me a new one or pay to fix it."


I also am sick and tired of fighting with my kids to clean up after themselves and contribute to this household.  Add that to the fact that my kids have NO concept of how money works (which I didn't really have a good understanding of savings, credit and interest and all that jazz either, but if I had, who knows where I would be today.)  I have heard it said The smart man earns interest and the stupid man pays it.  I want my kids to be the smart one and earn interest!!

Now don't get me wrong, I don't believe in giving kids an allowance for chores, it is there responsibility  to make this household run and functions smoothly.  I have to buy my kids clothes and pay for their school trips or a new basketball for practice.  By contributing to the house then they can earn money to buy those things.  I would start a college fund or mission fund with with money I am giving my kids but the money that will go into savings from their allowance will pay for those things (hopefully)

Now I hesitate to even put this out there for fear of it not happening and coming crashing down in a ball of flames but I have been barraged with comments and texts to see close ups of our new Family Economy System. So here it goes.

It starts with the zones which we will rotate thorough each week.

I have made a detailed description of what is involved in maintaining their zone so there is no question about what is part of their job.

Each child has a check list that has to be initialed at the end of each day and filled at the end of the week.  

The 4 categories that need to be checked of each day have also been outlined so there is no questions as to what is expected and entailed in those categories.  

At our Sunday night trip to the "Bank" the children will receive their money.  One dollar for each year of life (except for Colby because in years past we have given the opportunity to earn $10 and I don't feel I can go back on that)  We then implement the 10-20-70 division of their money.  

10% - goes to tithing (you can read more about this here)
20% - goes into savings, that they cannot touch until mission or college
70% - goes to what ever they choose to spend it on but they will be buying most of what they need (clothing, gifts for friends, trips to the movies and so on)

We want to help them learn about compound interest and why it is important to save so we will be helping them grow their money by adding 10% to what ever is in their savings "account" each quarter. Now this is where my kids got really excited about this plan.  They know that because of certain life events there is no college fund as of right now.  So they will need to save and we are helping them do it.  It is a great way for them to see how saving and not spending your money can benefit you in the long run!  Brett will be turning 16 in just a little over a year and I'm sure he is going to want a car, and gas to put in it.  Society has gotten to the point where they won't give a job to a teenager (don't even get me started on this) so how will my kids ever have a chance to earn money for these things!    

Now I feel I must give credit where credit is due, I did not come up with this plan on my own.  I had seen it over on Shawni's blog, to which I quickly ordered her parents book where the whole thing is outlined, Three Steps to a Stronger Family.  I knew from the moment I saw it that it was an answer to my prayers, (I told you I have been stressing about this for some time)  and Terry jumped on board with full force.  We went on a drive to run some errands and outlined the whole plan to get it in place and told the kids about it last night at a family meeting.  The kids are super excited about it and we are too.  I pray that we can stick with it and that my kids will never get into money trouble as adults because they were able to learn at a young age!


Always Behind

Do you ever feel like you're forgetting something?  I do! CONSTANTLY!  For some reason this school year has really thrown me for a loop.  With 4 kids in different schools and start and finish times, then add in after school activities and schedules, I can barely keep up!  I was talking to a friend and I was telling her about something that happened this summer in Oregon and I said "Well you probably saw it on my blog" then it hit me...I still haven't blogged this summer.  I haven't blogged school starting or our trip to California or Halloween.  Thanksgiving is quickly approaching with Christmas right behind and here I sit, not even caught up to JUNE!  Oh my, I'm in trouble!  I haven't taken photos of my daily life with my big camera in ages.  I do love instagram because it helps me keep the little day to days recorded.  Here is what my October looked like!  Maybe I'll get caught up by the end of the year!  

p.s. Don't mind that there are 4 days of cupcakes in my month, or that Bonnie gets the most camera time, it's just the way the cookie crumbles (or cupcake for that matter)


Thankful Thursday & 52 | 2012 - Texture

Since I am totally lame and can't seem to get my butt with it enough to get a real blog post together I am just combining these two post...lucky you, you get a 2fer!!   It's been a while since I have done a Thankful Thursday post so I though I would do one to kick off of the month of thankfulness.  So here is what I am thankful for this Thursday!

1.  Halloween is over.  HALLELUJAH!! I always go into this holiday with high hopes but am totally candy corned and fake blooded out by the big night!

2.  I found the plug in my house where I can vacuum the majority of my house without moving outlets.

3.  The temperatures have cooled to delightfully perfect weather!

4. It's cool enough to start my Starbucks hot chocolate habit back up.

5.  My sister who went to Costco and bought 8 cans of said hot chocolate for me because I was worried they would run out!

6.  My new dishwasher that is patiently awaiting installation in my garage.

7.  The satisfaction of accomplishing my to do list today.

8.   My new iPhone and the lovely photos it takes!

The theme for this week was texture and I have been playing a lot lately with light and not making everything all even light with perfect Martha Stewart light!  Thanks a lot Wendy, for some reason I am trying to step out of my box and I'm not likin it!! It's scary outside of my nice well evenly lit box!  But every once in a while I find a shot that makes me go, ok that's kinda cool.....so totally not me, but cool none the less!  This was one of those shots.  The morning sun was streaming in my front window lighting up my little girl and her breakfast!  I though the texture created in this photo by the shadows was pretty neat!!

Up next week - Wind

Don't forget to check out my other friends linked photos this week-