Finding Money for Summer Camp

Summer camps are smart.  They know that now, during the bitter cold of the winter, is the best time to send out their brochures to get us thinking about the warmth and fun of summer! Let’s face it – it’s a fantastic summer treat to get a week (or two) of quiet time around the house while the kids are at summer camp. The down side, of course, is that those weeks at camp can …

Teaching Kids About Money Using Our Cozy Kid Corporation

One of the questions we get asked most often about teaching kids about money is what we call the money we give our kids.  I always think this is such a funny question because I don’t really believe that what you call something makes much difference at all. In our family, we call the money we give our kids to cover the majority of their daily expenses an allowance.  You can read more about that …

Teaching Kids to Save Money

So you’ve been teaching your kids to save money: what do you do when they want to take money out of savings?  There’s a couple of key issues here: What should they be able to spend savings on? How much should they be able to take out of savings? How will they ever accumulate savings, if they’re spending their savings? We’ve come up with a plan that addresses all of these, and I’ll share the …

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The Great Cell Phone Debate – Another Way for Kids to Manage Money

When it comes to teaching kids about money, the first BIG challenge most kids will get these days will be the cell phone.  It’s become almost a rite of passage for a teenager – a sign that they’ve “grown up,” and a tool to fit in with their friends. But as a parent, how do you know when to let your child have a cell phone?  And once you do make the decision, how do …

When Money Lessons Are Hard – Part Two

It was ticket buying day, and we had a problem.  Two of our kids had saved enough money to purchase plane tickets to see grandma and grandpa but the third had not.  If you’re wondering what I’m talking about, you’ll want to see last week’s post here. Now, obviously this came as no surprise to Bret and I.  After all, we’d been discussing the issue with the kids for months.  We’d seen her balance continue …

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A Budget Will Save You Millions (Literally)

We’ve all had occasion in our lives to come across some money, and blow it on something stupid.  You see it all the time with kids – they get $50 for their birthday, and it burns a hole in their pocket.  A week later, it’s gone, and there’s really nothing to show for it but a bunch of receipts and empty wrappers. There’s nothing you can do to stop your kids – or anyone – …

Choosing a Path, Choosing a Major

Lots of parents and teachers ask teenagers, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” This is a terrible question – not because of what is asked, but because of how it gets answered.  Ask any teen this question, and they’ll probably not give you a straight answer.  They’ll tell you what their friends have told them they should do, or their guidance counselor, or a teacher, or a grandparent… or what you’ve …

Boomerang Kids: When Kids Move Back Home

A recent survey by the Pew Research Center finds that 13% of parents with grown children say one of their adult sons or daughters has moved back home in the past year. There’s even a term for this:  Boomerang Kids.  You watch them fly away into the big world beyond, and then they come right back home.  This recession has produced a bumper crop. Nowadays, you have to be prepared to have them move back …

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Allowance: The Tax Man Takes a Bite!

There’s a lot of things that you can teach a kid when you start giving him an allowance to manage, not the least of which is the impact of tax and other withholdings on a paycheck. By all means, please start out by handing over the entire allowance at first – preferably in cash.  We did this with our kids – when their allowance was just $50 per month.  After handing over the money, we’d …

Teenagers – More Responsible Than You Think

Raising teens is hard.  They’re not going to learn self-reliance unless they’re given some freedom – but how much freedom is too much?  We have fears (and sometimes the hope) that we’ll give them some of the freedom they’re looking for, and they’ll just mess it up, and come back to us for advice. It may appear that we really trust our kids, but like most parents, we’re still reluctant to give away a lot …