Christmas is coming. I have little to no money, and a huge family on both sides. I am working on a plan to give meaningful gifts without expending a great deal of money. I’ll be lucky to make sure my kids have a good christmas, let alone buy gifts for over 20 kids just within my immediate family and my husband’s.
Princess and I have discussed the matter and we decided that we are going to concentrate on setting up some family traditions this year, and decorating the house really nice for the holidays and doing holiday-related fun stuff, like singing carols, making gingerbread houses, cookies, making a great xmas dinner, and some family traditions for making memories. I am going to concentrate on those kind of things. I have a few ideas that will hopefully make it a great xmas even though the kids aren’t going to be getting much as they have in the past.
Princess’s list of things she wants has grown shorter and more substantial in price. She knows if she gets her #1 thing on her list there may not be much more under the tree. What she doesnt’ know is that we are planning on making a certificate for her — she borrowed money from us to buy a laptop. We have had a loan agreement which includes a pretty hefty list of chores she has had to do every day for a few months. If she misses even one thing we repossess the laptop at the end of the month, and she has to go the entire next month without missing anything to get it back. At the end of the month if all boxes are checked off we apply a specific amount to her debt. She has not missed one box for months, has never had the laptop repossessed, and has gone above and beyond even her to-do list to help me around here. So…now that she’s only got about $200 to go to pay it off, we are either going to give her a certificate that the debt is now paid off, or $100 off the amount, and that is one of our xmas gifts to her. She deserves it, she got straight A’s again, and she has been nominated to the National Junior Honor Society. She works like a dog and I am proud of her. She deserves her laptop. I think she has really gotten a lot out of the loan we did with her. We have treated it much like a bank loan and we had a loan agreement which was signed by all of us and witnessed. She has it hanging up in her room by her desk.
I think I may just take $100 off the amount because I want her to have that good feeling of paying off the loan herself. I will then do a “release of lien” and an ownership deed for her. LOL
I would definitely loan her money again. She’s a good risk. LOL
If she agrees to continue doing the work we have assigned her for this loan, we will pay her the monthly amount we were applying to the loan. I think she would like that and the work she is saving me, it would be well worth it. For instance, I haven’t washed a dish myself in over 3 months!! And we haven’t had a dirty dish crisis in that time, either. Of course having the dishwasher installed helps, but it is nice that i don’t have to load or unload it. She takes the garbage out every night, along with doing the kitty litter and feeding her pets. She watches Lola 3 times a week for an hour, plus once a week for a few hours while me and Daddy go somewhere. She cleans her room once a week, has to exercise for a half hour three times a week, has to read 3 hours a week, has to help with laundry and cleaning when I am doing that too. Impressive, huh? She also watches Lola more than that really, and also does her homework. Her chores take her about 20 minutes each day other than the reading and exercise which she gets without even really thinking.
It’s a lot of work but she agreed to it and she has done it faithfully. If I get a job and she will watch Lola for me in the evenings until Daddy comes home, I will release her from some of those other obligations, and pay her good for the babysitting. I don’t want her to watch Lola too much — I want her to be a kid. And I want her to continue getting good grades.
Of course, Princess has a lot of things that people would consider being spoiled. She is a 12 year old with a cell phone, a laptop, and other things like that. She has her best girlfriend over almost every day, the kid even stays over on school nights sometimes. (She’s a great kid I don’t mind) People looking in from the outside see those things and may think shes spoiled, but I know how hard she works for those things.
Well, I should close for now. It’s just that I am rarely in the mood to write anymore, so I thought I’d indulge myself this time.
Hope all of you are well.