Tuesday, October 26, 2010


The question of ownership has been a saucy topic around the house the last few weeks. Cool and I firmly believe that for the picklets to appreciate what they have, they have to work hard and take a certain amount of ownership in those things. For instance, Dill likes Tae Kwon Do and is required to pay a portion of his TKD classes each month. Chip loves gymnastics and volunteers his time at Sokol teaching, assisting and cleaning to earn his fees. Sweet is also required to pay for part of her gymnastics. She doesn't think this is fair because she is just a kid.

When she signed up for homeschool gymnastics I told her I would pay for it. She decided she wanted two hours a week for homeschool gymnastics instead of one. I told her she needed to pay half. She reluctantly agreed. She has been shelling out her $27.50 per month for three months.

We then decided to make the change to another gym. That took our cost from volunteering for her gym time to $200.00 per month. A big jump. We made the decision that Sweet would pay $40.00 per month for this. That is $10 per week and only cents per hour. She has been a bit reluctant with needing to pay this as she is just a kid you know.

Now I hear that she needs private lessons to perfect her text moves so she can compete this season. I told her to talk to to coaches and see what they mean by compete. Do they mean state? If they do, since her goal is to go to state, she could pay for private lessons herself. Well, that put the little cherub over the edge. She started sobbing. I can't afford to pay for all this. I have to pay for gymnastics, leotards, food. I AM JUST A KID!

I calmly explained to her that we do pay a majority of her lessons and that as much as we want to see her succeed we are not willing to put the family in the poor house to see it happen. I also explained that we have bought her several leotards and the extras she thinks she needs are her responsibility. 13 might be a bit excessive. And as for food. I supply food at no cost to her every day. If that food is not up to her standards then, YES, she does have to buy her own food. I am not McDonalds. I then went on to explain that I make the same amount from the paper route as she does. I not only have to pay for gymnastics and TKD, I have to pay for gas, oil changes, insurance and every other little things that comes about. I even went on to say that I have to drive back and forth, back and forth, back and forth, back and forth...

We both burst into laughter at that. Having children understand that money doesn't grow on trees and that there is a certain amount of ownership when you are required to pay for it is a touchy subject.

As a family we are barely keeping our heads above water. We provide the picklets with the necessities and several other things that are not necessary. So I ask myself, How much is too much? Where do we draw the line? I don't think there is a good answer to that.

Sweet has a passion, a drive, for gymnastics that I have never had for anything my entire life. And while she has that passion I want to nurture it and give her all I can; but groceries, heat, water and a roof over our heads needs to come first. How do you explain that to an 11 year old when you can't scream, "I AM JUST A KID!"?

(c) 2008-2010 Wicked Pickles-Homefront Lines

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