On the trip, Child 1's friend brought along a Nintendo DS (something I myself had thought of getting at times). The two oldest LOVED it. They would beg him all the time to play it. Suddenly their Leapsters didn't hold the same appeal. So of course, their question on the way home (not a smart thing to do when facing the costs of vacation) was "Can I have a Nintendo DS?"
In the past I have always said, "Add it to your Christmas list." (Child 1 informed me he has before and still never received it.) However, this time I said, "Well, save up for it!" They looked a bit shocked to hear such foreign advice, but they started making plans...
Monday morning, I was groggy and just trying to figure out where I was (as in home, no longer at the beach...). Child 1 was already busy making a sign to offer some products and services. He was offering to do detective work, sharpen pencils, and sell candy. Then Child 2 got involved and decided to sell seashells (which I cannot say fast for anything) too. They set a table up outside and waited for customers.
I will admit. I am going to be honest here. I cringed a little. I wondered, "What will the neighbors think?" I don't know why I was a little embarrassed...I did these things as a kid too. I guess it is because I always feel guilty when I drive by little stands in our neighborhood and don't stop. I didn't want anyone else to feel that same guilt. (I rarely have cash on me and usually if I am going, I need to be somewhere fast...) Plus, I know it doesn't sound too noble to raise money for a DS as compared to charities and such. (Both kids do have generous hearts though and have contributed in their own ways throughout their young years) But...it is what it is.
Regardless of all my doubts, I didn't stop them, though I suggested that the candy might not last long in the sun. And it did end up in the fridge not long afterward. :) But as the morning progressed, business started to pick up. Know what the best seller was? Shells. They sold well. Oh, the shells were not from our recent trip but past trips. Anyway, a little while later, Child 1's friend came over with some lemonade, and the kids sold that too. I got tickled when his mom and I were talking via Facebook. She said that her son had just come in and said my son had given him a 25 minute lunch break. (I informed my child later that I was pretty sure law dictated a full half hour :)
In the end, the kids made $18.50. I think some of our neighbors were a bit generous in their payments. I suggested that they needed to give our neighbor some money for the lemonade, but they insisted that he insisted that wasn't necessary. Wasn't that sweet?
A bigger shocker than selling shells by the sidewalk was that they decided together to go in TOGETHER to buy a DS to share. Really? Did they really decide that together? I was shocked. I told them they would have to have a plan for sharing, and they informed me they were already thinking about that. Child 2 even told me that she got to choose the color as long as it wasn't pink (per Child 1's request). So I went from embarrassment/discomfort to a little bit of joy in knowing that my two oldest children were working together for a common goal. That is a rare thing around here!
They have a ways to go to get enough money. We are going to reinstate allowances which we have been miserable about paying in the last two years which should help. And I have informed the kids that at our upcoming garage sale, any money they make from their toy sales is theirs. Hopefully they will keep the momentum going and reach their goal together. (I did tell them I would buy them their first game once they bought one)
As for me, I am going to start keeping some change/small bills in my car...you just never know when you are going to pass a lemonade stand...