Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Kids are in Charge: Aldi Edition

I decided to have some real world learning today and let the kids shop for their own food. By this, I mean snacks and goodies. I gave them a $15 budget that had to include tax. The only caveat was for every junk food item they got, they had to also buy a healthy, nutritious snack they would actually eat.

I thought this would be a lesson in Mother Knows Best or See How Far A Dollar Really Goes? NOT FAR. I was pleasantly surprised by the results!

Sweet Girl tends to be a healthy snacker. She chooses apples or pretzels over snack cakes or candy 9 times out of 10. And she picked much of the same today. What surprised me with her was how diligent she was in adding her total as we walked through the store. She was very frugal and initially came in around $5. However, after I firmly said no to a baby blanket (at Aldi? Yes.) that was on sale, she bought a few more snacks. Final total $8.21. I give her points for her negotiating skills and seeing a way to balance what she "needed" (food) with what she "wanted" (blanket). Being able to sacrifice and stay flexible is a valuable trait.

Sweet Boy is my junk eater. He would eat cake, brownies, soda, and meat 24/7. He hates fresh produce so I knew this would be a challenge. His negotiating is much more manipulative that his sister's but he is practical. His plan was to get 5 boxes of some NutriGrain bars as his healthy snack and get 5 candy items. I wouldn't let him get the bars though. Hello sugar! So we talked about true nutrition and how fruit filled does not equal fruit. I did commend him on his plan. There were 8 bars a box so they would have lasted a while. He spent much more than his sister but he was very thoughtful after our conversation. His total was $12.56.

I loved giving almost free reign over how to spend their money. We left the store with much less junk food than expected. It was a solid reminder that if we don't have junk in the house, no one really misses it. Even if they have the freedom to get it themselves!

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Like George Washington Carver said:

1. Be clean both inside and outside.
2. Neither look up to the rich nor down on the poor.
3. Lose, if need be, without squealing.
4. Win without bragging.
5. Always be considerate of women, children and old people.
6. Be too brave to lie.
7. Be too generous to cheat.
8. Take your share of the world and let others take theirs.


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