I try to pretend the kid has a choice in the matter, but the reality is she doesn't. Since the day she was born, any time Alexis gets any money from anyone, half of it goes into her savings account. I figure she doesn't need a single thing right now, but when she's headed off to college some day, she might appreciate having a few bucks stashed to buy books or whatever. Of course, by the time she does head to college, books will probably be non-existent, but maybe she'll be able to post her own bail after she gets arrested for stalking Sidney Crosby. Or whatever.
In the past year, I've started to give the kid a little more power over how she handles the half of her money she sort of has accessible. And by "power," I mean I've made her life complicated. Instead of standing in the toy aisle at the store and helping her find something that she has enough money to buy, I've been asking her if she really wants to spend that money, or if she wants to save it for Disney World or so she can buy her playhouse.
The answer 99.9% of the time is that she wants to save it to buy a playhouse. Shhh. . . don't tell her, but we're planning to buy one sometime this summer. In the meantime, I greatly enjoy watching her stuff every penny she has in her piggy bank. Saving money builds character, right?
So tonight we were on our way home and were talking about the playhouse she's hoping to get. She has figured out that she wants to paint it bright pink (NOT HAPPENING, but she can dream if she wants to). She wants polka-dotted curtains in the windows. She plans to take her blue moon blanket out to the playhouse, just in case she ever needs to rest for a minute. Really, she has it all figured out.
As we drove down the bumpy country road talking about the playhouse, I realized that the weather was entirely too perfect for us to just drive past the field filled with horses. I pulled off to the side of the road and we jumped out to greet Alexis' furry friends that don't live with us.
As Alexis petted and talked to the horse she has name Abby, her thoughts returned to her dream playhouse. She scrunched up her face and then her face exploded into enthusiasm and glee.
"Momma!" she said. "I figured it out!"
"What did you figure out?" I asked.
"I figured out where Abby can live!" she continued.
You probably know where this is going, but I am too dense to have realized I was about to walk right into a giant trap.
"Where is Abby going to live?" I asked.
"Since you won't let her live in my bedroom, she can live in my playhouse!" she said as she bent to pick up some straw for Abby to eat when she moves in.
I told her she would have to save up enough money to buy a horse trailer before she can even think about that. DON'T ANYONE DARE SEND THE KID ANY MONEY.