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  1. #21
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    Apr. 11, 2001
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    Tennessee
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    Quote Originally Posted by halo View Post
    Absolutely go to dave ramsey. The most important thing he teaches is the budget.
    My kids study his "Financial Peace" and it's methods of personal finance as part of their economics course in high school.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  2. #22
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    Jun. 14, 2006
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    VA
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    I think that when we move overseas, they'll get it. It looks like we may be going to Maputo, Mozambique! It will be so good for them.
    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

    Might be a reason, never an excuse...



  3. #23
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    Jan. 25, 2009
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    Rock Chalk!
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    Quote Originally Posted by BuddyRoo View Post

    I don't want them to feel like they are poor. We're not poor. .
    Poor isn't about having things or money. You're talking about living within your means, which is a very different situation.
    A proud friend of bar.ka.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  4. #24
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    Oct. 15, 2010
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    205

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    I second those who say your first convo needs to be with Mr. BuddyRoo so you can present a united front. My guess is that maybe much harder than getting the kiddos on board. For many parents it is really hard to acknowledge that being a good parent does not require buying your kid everything they want. My husband had parents who gave him everything he wanted, but never bothered to teach him how to write a check-let alone how to balance a check book, and he dug himself into a financial pit he's still climbing out of at 30.

    And then I second EVERYTHING meupatdoes says.


    4 members found this post helpful.

  5. #25
    Join Date
    Jun. 22, 2007
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    SE CT
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    Enough has been said about the kids wanting to get these ridiculously priced gifts, so I'll take on the other...what TWENTY TWO family members to buy gifts for...on one side??

    Are you kidding me? Both my DH side and mine-YEARS ago, stopped buying "everyone" presents. On my side, all adults pick names, and there is a $50.00 limit on the gifts. We all buy for the kids under 18. On my husband's side, we did the same, until two years ago.

    On that side we now do a "Yankee sock exchange". You buy a pair of NEW and UGLY socks, and put a $50.00 gift card in each one. We all pick numbers, and of course as you go along the cards and socks get all switched around. Number one then gets the pick of every GC at the end. The kids then fight over the socks, discussing to match or not.... Some gift card trading ensues after the adults leave and have coffee. Kids end up with a new pair of ugly socks as a bonus.

    Everyone loves it! I have a feeling many in your family will agree the gift buying has gotten out of hand. in this economy, MANY families are now one income, or struggling. I would try and bring up an "alternative gift exchange" soon-of course you can use boxes instead of socks. This also leaves more money in your immediate family to spend on each other Christmas morning, before the big family get together.... Good luck!


    4 members found this post helpful.

  6. #26
    Join Date
    Apr. 16, 2002
    Location
    ontario, canada
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    My thoughts would be to...

    (1) Show them the monthly budget. You may have to simplify things to make it a productive and age appropriate meeting, but they are a great age to start looking at the actual costs of living. Show them the monthly take home (after tax and retirement contributions - those topics should have their own sit-down chat at a later date), the fixed monthly expenses, and variable expenses and deal with any savings targets (i.e. we put away $100/month for car repairs, etc). They need to understand that $600 represents X% of the family's monthly budget.

    (2) Give them some responsibility as it relates to money. It can start with a monthly or quaterly allowance that is designed to cover their entertainment, giving of gifts, clothes, etc. I realize these are step-kids so you may have to modify things depending on when they are with you, etc. In an ideal world, though, they would start having to make the choice between getting that new shirt and going to the movies with some friends.



  7. #27
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    Jun. 14, 2006
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    VA
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    I come from a very very small family so I don't get the big fam thing either. Even though we do gift exchanges, since we do so MANY gift exchanges, I might as well just buy one gift for everyone!!!

    My husband is even hell bent on renting a car and driving home (13 hrs) for DINNER on Christmas Eve?!?!!


    I just don't get it. But my family is very small and we are used to seeing each other once per year whereas hubby's family does 3 -5 days per week together in the small town he grew up in. It's been absolutely stifling for me. But it is what he has done up til the last few months for over 40 years.

    I can't fault it. It is what it is. But our "small" get together is 23 people if you include me. No joke. That's IMMEDIATE family in the area. IN. THE. AREA.

    (the sane ones got the hell out a long time ago I think!)

    Anyway. Lovely folks.

    I just hate this crap.
    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

    Might be a reason, never an excuse...


    1 members found this post helpful.

  8. #28
    Join Date
    Apr. 4, 2006
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    VA (or MS during the school year)
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    2,514

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    Make them earn an allowance. Make them get a job if they want money. Don't hand them stuff. Give them a $$ amount for Christmas.

    I was 14 and got a job on any farm that would hire me so that I could buy my own horse. I paid for lessons, leasing, and eventually buying. My parents paid for the vet bills with the agreement that I gave up basketball (which was also costing them $$).

    I grew up with parents who made 6 figures. They've always been of the mindset that "if you want something, you pay for it". My dad made me outline an entire plan on what the costs of owning a horse were and how exactly I was going to pay for it. He said the first time I couldn't pay board, he would lend me the money. But after that, the horse had to go. I never once borrowed money from him.

    He just lent me $5000 1.5 years ago so that I could buy my truck (I had a car that I traded in but it wasn't practical for my situation). I pay him each month. I'm on scholarship for school. I pay my utilities, my dog's bills, groceries, etc. He will send me gas money when I come home on breaks.

    I truely feel like I'm a much better, more well rounded person for growing up like that. It taught me how to manage money and it gave me perspective on how important it is to a) really want something and b) take care of what I have. My brother was not so much raised this way and he has no money sense what so ever. He buys something, sells it 3 months later for 30% of what he paid for it, and then rebuys it at full price a few months after that. He breaks his laptops, gets a new one, etc. Doing nobody any favors.
    "People ask me 'will I remember them if I make it'. I ask them 'will you remember me if I don't?'"


    2 members found this post helpful.

  9. #29
    Join Date
    Mar. 11, 2007
    Location
    Montana
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    5,691

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    Quote Originally Posted by BuddyRoo View Post
    I come from a very very small family so I don't get the big fam thing either. Even though we do gift exchanges, since we do so MANY gift exchanges, I might as well just buy one gift for everyone!!!

    My husband is even hell bent on renting a car and driving home (13 hrs) for DINNER on Christmas Eve?!?!!


    I just don't get it. But my family is very small and we are used to seeing each other once per year whereas hubby's family does 3 -5 days per week together in the small town he grew up in. It's been absolutely stifling for me. But it is what he has done up til the last few months for over 40 years.

    I can't fault it. It is what it is. But our "small" get together is 23 people if you include me. No joke. That's IMMEDIATE family in the area. IN. THE. AREA.

    (the sane ones got the hell out a long time ago I think!)

    Anyway. Lovely folks.

    I just hate this crap.
    You know, I don't think I would show them the budget or any of that, loose lips sink ships. Considering the situation I would want to keep some privacy, It's enough to say "considering everything, I'm not going to be a big spender this Christmas. The End."

    As much as you can keep it in your control, do that. If Mr. wants to buy 22 presents let him do it. Lock up the money so he can only spend so much. Nobody is making you go to the store and taking your money out, don't let yourself get coerced into doing something you very logically don't want to do. Just don't do it-with a smile and a hug.

    My DH is from a very large close family-but they don't spend much on gifts. Everyone gets socks from my MIL. Or a box of candy, or a jar of honey. Easy!


    2 members found this post helpful.

  10. #30
    Join Date
    Mar. 4, 2007
    Location
    Western Washington
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    2,991

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    Dave Ramsey. Most credit unions and banks also have info about talking with kids about money. But none of that will matter if Mr. BR is not on board. And mom pitching a fit about the "fake" Uggs? Tough.

    We tried to do the allowance thing and gave SS enough to buy his own clothes. Big fail. Then I set the budget and took him shopping. "OK, kiddo, we're spending $XX on back to school clothes this year. You decide if you want the whazzo brand name tennis shoes or pants. Or ... these reasonably priced clothes ... you can have pants AND shirts." and meant it when I said I really didn't care what he wore to school. That seemed to work.

    Also that I wasn't kidding when we told him we were buying 1 (fill in the blank) and if it got lost, trashed, broken .... he wasn't getting a replacement. And meant that, too. Oh ... you lost your phone? Sorry. Here's the basic throw-away phone that cost me $10. Don't like it? tough.

    SS says now those are the single most important things I taught him. I'm proud to say he's figured it out. Has money in the bank and doesn't owe anyone a dime. And yet, he's generous. He places value on things, and recognizes that value doesn't equal price. :-)

    But, to be fair, they are old enough to be getting some basic info. They need to be treated like they are part of an actual, real family, not the fairy tale make believe one their mother seems to be in. Speaking as one stepmom to another, it's very tough. But please, do not equate how much money is spent, with love. I know you love those girls.


    2 members found this post helpful.

  11. #31
    Join Date
    Jun. 14, 2006
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    VA
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    11,372

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    You've just hit the other issue. I don't even have access to the main account.

    THe one his paycheck goes into. I'm still scraping by on my last paycheck from my old job. I have to ask for money for groceries.

    I've been asking for 2 weeks to get access to the other account. No dice.

    It is very frustrating.
    A good horseman doesn't have to tell anyone...the horse already knows.

    Might be a reason, never an excuse...



  12. #32
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    Mar. 4, 2007
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    Western Washington
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    Uh, oh. BR. This is bad.


    8 members found this post helpful.

  13. #33
    Join Date
    Mar. 11, 2007
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    Montana
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    Well then you're definitely off the hook for buying the 22 presents.

    You're in a pickle, if you don't get your name on that account I wouldn't buy a single thing, for Christmas or for dinner.

    I'd be for getting separate accounts asap... and don't stress about Christmas shopping!


    2 members found this post helpful.

  14. #34
    Join Date
    Jul. 31, 2007
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    15,564

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    Reading along and bringing in my own experience, I think your kids are ripe for the "earn the bling you want" phase of life.

    And in retrospect, I had lots of wealth in high school. It pained me deeply that I couldn't afford a horse, but below that I could earn money that was almost in line with what I wanted to buy.

    That was the beginning of making my peace with money. But in your OP, BuddyRoo, it sounds like you don't have peace with money. You want to keep a lot of secrets. You wish your kids would do otherwise. You don't know why they don't "get it" as you did.

    The key for anyone is to help them feel not overwhelmed by a bad situation. I'm not sure you need to show them a budget to get that done, but the amount of disclosure varies with families. If you can feel ok with having a modest Christmas, they'll learn how to be ok with that, too.

    I'm glad you posted here. It sounds like this was hard to bear all by yourself.
    The armchair saddler
    Politically Pro-Cat


    1 members found this post helpful.

  15. #35
    Join Date
    Nov. 2, 2001
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    Packing my bags
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    33,602

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    Quote Originally Posted by BuddyRoo View Post
    Is there a good way to explain to kids (teenagers) that money doesn't grow on trees?

    Husband and I are again down to one income. I was the primary bread winner for the last few years and no one wanted to acknowledge this so lots went on credit cards. But bio mom and dad seem to want to keep the kids in the world of "we have plenty".

    Well, we do have plenty for the basics. But we don't have enough for me to say...go shopping (which I abhor anyway) or for us to buy the gifts they want. SD14 wants a laptop. SD13 wants ugg boots. And they want us to get their mom a 300 dollar necklace for her bday and a 600 dollar system for Xmas.

    We can't afford it. We just can't. I have to buy all the Xmas gifts for everyone in his (huge) family plus mine this year.

    I don't shop. My jeans have been mine for 12 years. Hubby needs some new, he's down to one holey pair. We cannot afford to spend several hundred on gifts this year. Our cost of living went up and our income went down. How do you start teaching kids about money without making them feel badly? I grew up without much so it's kind of in my DNA. I mean, we moved into a home without HEAT. And we had crackers and ketchup for dinner sometimes.

    I don't want the girls to know that EVER if I can help it. But they do need to know that we can't spend 500 bucks on gifts for each person.

    I tried to explain this week when they were here that our RENTAL home costs 3 times what our big house back in MI cost. Plus I'm not working. I tried to be cool when I showed them I was coloring my own hair instead of going to a stylist. (hate! but know I need to!)

    I tried to show them when I had to ask dad for money to go grocery shopping that we are on a tight budget.

    But they still want a computer and UGGs for Xmas.

    Help. Dad WILL try to give them whatever they want. PLUS whatever they want for mom. The gift they want to get their mom (I buy the gift from them to Mom and from them to Dad) is way beyond my budget. WAY. Like hundreds beyond.

    How do you have that conversation? I'm trying to be "light" about it so they don't think we're in dire straits...but frankly...we just CAN'T spend what they want this year. I am afraid people are going to blame it on me. THe funny thing is that no one in the family knows that I am the only one who had an income the last few years. I've been scrimping and saving to give them all that Dad wanted to. But now that I am not working....I can't.

    there is no shame in having been poor at one time.

    when the kid was little we were broke.
    Many times I had to tell him in the store that I didn't have the money to buy what he wanted. He never threw a tantrum.

    Now, your kids are teens. They should be able t understand that, no, it's not going to happen.
    While you aplaude their ideas and the love hey have for their mom, you won't be able to accomodate them.
    They will need to learn that expenses like that are to be planed ahead of time so savings can be acquired.

    The boy scouts have a merit badge Personal Management that stresses financial responsibilities. I am sure the girl scouts have similar. The requirements are available online, I am sure the little booklet as well. If not, the online shop sells it, I am sure, for 5 bucks plus S&H.

    They are old enough to be part of such important family decisions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Bristol Bay View Post
    Try setting your broomstick to fly at a lower altitude.


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  16. #36
    Join Date
    Oct. 9, 2012
    Location
    Washington State
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    506

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    BuddyRoo it sounds like there are quite a few issues here but about the kids...I'm not sure what you are trying to protect them from? The sooner they figure out that sometimes you can't have the things you want because things cost money and money isn't always available, the better. They need to know that money has value that must be parceled out in order to live a decent life which includes a house, a car, insurance, electricity, basic clothing, and food. Pretty much everything else could be considered a luxury item.

    About mom, what the heck?! You are supposed to buy her a piece of jewelry that costs a few hundred dollars? That's a bit over the top. Where is Stepdad in all this? AND if she has a problem with your lack of ready cash she can buy the G-ddamn brand name items herself.

    I'm also a little lost on Mr.B's disconnect with budgeting. You are down to one income and he wants to blow money on a car rental to go to a one night dinner. You don't have access to the only account and have to ask for money to go buy groceries. He's all for you buying gifts for 22 people. Is he the one that pays the bills? Does he know how much it sounds like you are struggling?

    From reading your posts lately you are the nicest, most giving person I have heard of in a while, but that doesn't mean you should be a push over.

    Eta: When my daughter was around 13 and was starting to ask for higher price items that would have been hard for us to afford I did show her a budget. In fact I had her help me make the budget for a few months and she had to help me decide where to spend the money between bills, groceries, and the little extras. Through the years I have periodically done it again when I feel she is losing sight that life costs money. It didn't hurt her in any way and has made her more responsible with her own money.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  17. #37
    Join Date
    Jan. 25, 2009
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    Hunter Dad & I took Dave Ramsey's class this summer. It was through a nearby church, and it gave us a lot of good talking points. While we haven't been 100% faithful, it has put us much closer to where we want to be. It might be a good thing for you and Mr. BR as well.
    A proud friend of bar.ka.


    1 members found this post helpful.

  18. #38
    Join Date
    Jan. 31, 2003
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    18,472

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    BR... I know you didnt ask for this particular advice. But I am going to give it to you anyway, because I am worried.

    Do not, do not, do not move to Africa until you get this mess sorted. I mean all of it. The kids, the husband, the dog...*the bank account*.

    Maybe things arent as bad as they sound but they sound pretty bad. Sometimes things are bad and we dont realize it, because we are busy living life. Or we think its a phase. Or we havent ever been in this situation before so we dont know what is normal. But if even half of this is as unnerving as it sounds... i think you have a problem that is best dealt with before you move to another country.
    "Kindness is free" ~ Eurofoal
    ---
    The CoTH CYA - please consult w/your veterinarian under any and all circumstances.


    31 members found this post helpful.

  19. #39
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    Oct. 14, 2010
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    growing up my sister & I got an allowance. We started at a whopping 25 cents. A quarter. OK, so we were 4 & 5. One thing that I will always remember is the week that McDonalds had cheeseburgers on sale for a quarter. We wanted them. Then we asked where our allowance was and were told that we were eating it. Oh. We weren't privy to the details, but grew up knowing there was a bottom to the well.

    I agree with the others, that you've got other issues to solve. My father pulled some of the same crap with my mother. She let it go one way to long and didn't want anyone to know the mess she was in.



  20. #40
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    Mar. 4, 2007
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    Western Washington
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    I know the whole thumbs up thing is supposed to reduce the number of people saying "ditto" but I am in such total and complete agreement with EqTrainer that I gave her a thumbs up AND am posting "DITTO" to her post. Red alert. My spidey senses are tingling. I hope that I am completely wrong, but ....

    Either intentionally or unintentionally he is doing you wrong. It's just not right that you have to ask your HUSBAND for grocery money after you've supported him and the kids for a couple years. Not right.


    25 members found this post helpful.

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