I enjoy talking to children, more then I do, most grown up people.
Somehow, little ones seem to be born knowing right from wrong. They seem to have morals and dignity, immediately, and I am trying to pinpoint where it is, that this starts to change in some children?
I like to start conversations about all kinds of things with my kids, and a lot of the time, they end up coming up with some of the most fascinating ideas and stories all by themselves.
I am amazed at their imaginations, the things they come up with and they always seem to shock us, with what comes out of their little mouths. Most of which is basic, common sense.
The other night, our 10 year old son, Aaron, came into the kitchen, with a notebook and a pencil, and asked, "Mom, how much is an average monthly rent payment for a house or an apartment for one person, until I get married and have somebody else to help pay the bills?" Of course I laughed, and he just sat here at the table, with his pencil in hand, staring at me with his sweet, big, curious, blue eyes.
So, I figured we would do this from an average for our area, and for what the prices are now, and replied with, "I think $600 a month is a fair price, Aaron." and he started writing this down, and asked about monthly bills, utilities, car payments, groceries, spending money for video games and cell phone bills. This was getting to much in depth for me to continue with dinner, so I sat down next to him and helped him with his list. I went by averages, again, for our area, and for present time:
Heat $350 a month for oil/$400 3 times a year for coal
Car payment $400
Car insurance $100
Groceries avg $300 (for 1)
Electric $150 (for 1)
Cable or satellite $100
Repairs/Upkeep $0 (so far)
And so, he added these up, and started freaking out, and said, "How am I
supposed to make enough money to pay for all these bills? OMG"
$2200 est monthly bills....
So, he said, "well, I'm crossing out the car. I can't afford that yet.....and the insurance"
So now we are down to $1700 and he said, "well, I'm going to cut out coupons, how much will my groceries cost?"
I underestimated those, as I hope my kids would shop frugally, like we
do now...but I said, "we can cut $50", so, $1650....not good enough
So we cut the tv out, the cell phone, now we were down to $1450......and he said, "how much will I earn to start?"
So, we went into that a bit, and we did an average of $10/hr to start,
@40 hrs per wk, $400 a week, or $20,800 a yr or $1730 a month...
So he said, "oh cool! Ill have $280 a month leftover after I pay my bills! I'll use that for video games!"
And I said, "NOT SO FAST! You owe $300 in taxes, per month, for local,
state, federal, SSI, Medicare, occupation, per capita, etc etc"
And now you're at -$20 a month and you don't have a car, a tv, a cell phone, video games, what would you do, Aaron?"
My 10 yr old said, "Well, i'll be getting a second job, or a better paying job, that's for sure!"
Oh, the crazy things that children come up with!