Saturday, May 26, 2018
Parenting & Relationships

Allowances allow for teachable moments

When I was a child I was the self-professed board game king.

In fact, board games were so much a part of my childhood that I recall the very game that taught me about the real world of my parents and money: Pay Day.

The makers set up the board like a month and each day you would get mail that consisted mostly of bills until you got to the end of the month and hence Pay Day.

My parents and I played the game one night when my father grumbled after receiving a bill during the game that he had real bills to pay and thus it was no fun to play. I immediately began to think of my own meager funds, although the game still proved exciting to me.

Financially, I actually never received an allowance. My allowance consisted of asking Mom for money. She would rumble through her purse and toss a few dollars my way. Dad never seemed to have money on him, but he always managed to buy what I needed.

Popular culture did not help my effort to obtain an allowance, especially when The Brady Brunch aired an episode where the kids talked about getting allowances for chores.

I asked my father why he didn't pay me for doing chores and he responded that he was not going to pay me for what I was expected to do as a member of the household.

An allowance that my father had to pay me on a scheduled basis seemed like a bill to him just like the Pay Day game, and he did not intend to create another bill.

However, my wife, a former banker who holds a master's in business administration from the University of South Florida, uses allowances as a teaching moment that helps our kids learn money management and citizenship.

I am my father's child, and much like my father, we do not pay our children for chores they must complete as members of our household. However, by third grade, we did pay our oldest child a modest allowance of $10 a month.

Of that allowance, 10 percent had to be put into a savings account that we opened for him, while another 10 percent had to be set aside for donations. He can contribute to his school for fundraisers, our church or even purchase a canned good at the local grocery store to donate.

The rest of the money can be spent with our blessing, as he wishes.

It is interesting to see how much more cautious my son is when it comes to spending his own money. I am proud of the fact that my kids are learning how to save and support their community at the same time because an allowance with a purpose makes pay day even more special.

Keith Berry is a married father of two who lives in Westchase.

Comments
With makeover, ZooTampa at Lowry Park takes a page from the theme parks

With makeover, ZooTampa at Lowry Park takes a page from the theme parks

TAMPA — Behind the construction walls near the carousel at ZooTampa at Lowry Park, hammers, saws and power drills made a racket in the blazing Friday heat. A raft full of 100-pound water jugs took test trips on the new Roaring Springs ride set ...
Published: 05/25/18

Tell Me About It: Half sister worries about wedding drama

Half sister worries about wedding drama"target="_blank">Half sister worries about wedding dramaQ: I really want to go to my half-sister’s wedding, but I don’t want to start trouble with her dad, who hates me. He might cause a scene if I go.My mom ch...
Published: 05/25/18
An all-ages playlist of the summer songs of 2018? It can be done

An all-ages playlist of the summer songs of 2018? It can be done

Recently I was asked to create a playlist for a summer beach party. An opportunity to procrastinate and mess around on Spotify for a few hours? Yeah, totally, when can I start?I like playlists that are diverse, not just in terms of genre (pop, hip-ho...
Published: 05/24/18
9 things to do indoors on this rainy Memorial Day weekend

9 things to do indoors on this rainy Memorial Day weekend

We've got you covered. Get it?
Published: 05/24/18

Tell Me About It: Busy mom wants to check her priorities

Q: As a mother of three young kids holding a full-time job and with a husband who frequently works late evenings and some weekends, I feel my priorities change according to what is in front of me at the time, then I’m reconsidering my choices later.H...
Published: 05/24/18
Top things to do for Memorial Day weekend in Tampa Bay: Concerts, festivals and memorials

Top things to do for Memorial Day weekend in Tampa Bay: Concerts, festivals and memorials

Our editors' picks for things to do this weekend.
Published: 05/25/18
Top things to do this weekend: Margarita Festival, Rays’ Kiermaier as Star Wars figure, Nintinder

Top things to do this weekend: Margarita Festival, Rays’ Kiermaier as Star Wars figure, Nintinder

LIME TIME: Tampa Bay Margarita Festival This year, there are twice the bartenders and a new RFID wristband system for less waiting at the two-day Tampa Bay Margarita Festival with a margarita flavor for every taste. Music headliners are the Wallflow...
Published: 05/23/18
John Fogerty, coming to Clearwater, isn’t backing down on protest songs, Parkland and #MeToo

John Fogerty, coming to Clearwater, isn’t backing down on protest songs, Parkland and #MeToo

It’s been 50 years since John Fogerty wrote Fortunate Son, one of the most scathing protest songs from the Vietnam War era. Writing another one with that kind of impact has been a challenge ever since. "Back in the ’80s, I had a couple o...
Published: 05/23/18
What's in theaters this week: 'Solo: A Star Wars Story,' Art and Short Film Mini-Fest

What's in theaters this week: 'Solo: A Star Wars Story,' Art and Short Film Mini-Fest

OPENING FRIDAY: SOLO: A STAR WARS STORY Alden Ehrenreich stars as a young Han Solo navigating the underworld and meeting his forever wingman Chewbacca and his scoundrel buddy Lando Calrissian (Donald Glover). With Emilia Clarke, Thandie Newton, Woo...
Published: 05/23/18
A weekend of festivals: Sunset Music Fest, 97X Barbecue, WMNF’s US Festival tribute

A weekend of festivals: Sunset Music Fest, 97X Barbecue, WMNF’s US Festival tribute

THE BEATS GO ON: Sunset Music FestivalAt last year’s Sunset Music Festival, the focus was all on crowd safety. After two fans died from drug overdoses at Tampa’s largest annual rave in 2016, organizers heightened security across the board, yielding a...
Published: 05/23/18