Recently we celebrated Miss Ariel’s 6th birthday…. again. Living in 2 different states means that having a summer birthday can really dampen your festivities. The last 2 years we have kept it simple. One year we took Ariel to the Mall of America where we enjoyed the indoor theme park rides and went to see her first movie (Monsters University). The following year we had a simple family party, but it was shared with her older boy cousin, so while it was nice, it wasn’t quite the personal celebration I was hoping for her.
So this year we went all out and had a big party in California at her gymnastics facility. We invited ALL of her friends. It was insane and wonderful at the same time. The only glitch? It was months before her actual birthday.
That can be weird for a 5 almost 6 year old.
Luckily she didn’t seem to mind. She throughly soaked in the time with her friends and fun times.
Now that her real birthday has come while we were here in Minnesota, we decided to have a simple gathering with some pizza, cupcakes, good friends and family.
We also decided to keep it simple in the way of gift giving since many of her friends and family were so generous. But I didn’t want to skip giving her something. So this idea popped into my head. I have been waiting to give my first born her first set of JOY JARS. Since her 5th birthday, people have started giving her money as a gift. We don’t do allowance here (at least not yet), so this was her first real taste of money. She was very excited. I began to think about how to wisely teach about the responsibility of money. Piggy bank? Wallet? Spend it wantonly? After much pondering I came up with the JOY Jars.
In our house we try and teach the simple rules of living by JOY standards.
And I began to think that perhaps we can take this concept to teach money as well. Here is how we are using the same concept to teach about money.
Jesus First — Tithing
Others Second — Gift giving
Yourself Last — Savings
! (happy happy) — Spending
So far, the concept has really hit home with Miss Ariel because the first Sunday after getting her Joy Jars she volunteered to get her own money from her J jar for tithing and continued to do so every week afterwards. This is a big win in my book!
Each one must give as he has decided in his heart, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver. —
2 Corinthians 9:7
Since birthdays are so much about the birthday kid, it was a nice change of pace to also use the opportunity to teach about others and Jesus.
How do you teach your kids the responsibility of money?