June 23, 2008

Open for Business

The "mom store" is officially open for business. Thanks to the creative idea of my fabulous friend, Jen, the kids are getting a great lesson in economics. We have assigned a "mom buck" value to dozens of household tasks and activities and they are busy running around earning their money.

Eating your dinner - 1 mom buck
Eating your dinner without complaining - 3 mom bucks
Brushing your teeth without being asked - 1 mom buck
Practicing the piano - 7 mom bucks
Entertaining Bridger while I shower - 8 mom bucks
Workbook pages - 2 mom bucks

Reading a book, jumping jacks, random acts of kindness, washing windows, setting the table. . .

You name it, it has a value. The normal chores do not get included in the buck count, as Eva now parrots, "That's just part of being in the family."

Most of the merchandise came from the hidden stashes of secret gifts and prizes I had hidden around the house, and I added some dollar stuff from Target. Even a new box of pink and purple straws is a coveted product on the shelves. Lance created the signage for the store and the girls created the product displays. And the currency. . .

That is why it is called a mom buck:) There are about 100 mom bucks in circulation at any given moment. When I really want them to do a big task, I have to throw out the occasional "20 mom buck incentive", and, realizing I do not have enough cash flow, I have to run to the "mint" and print off some more currency.
Their purchasing strategies have surprised me. Lance is counting his bucks up and saving up for the big ticket items. Eva has nickeled and dimed herself for the quickest purchase she can make, at this rate she will never be able to buy the Webkinz. Sadie is buying all of the items she knows that she is competing with Eva for, leaving her beloved Strawberry Shortcake purchases until the end, knowing that Eva will never buy those.
It has been open for a week and it has worked fabulously well. The kids are even coming to me and asking me what else they can clean. After I pick my jaw up off the floor, I assign them another task, a mom buck value, and off they go!