Monday, September 30, 2013

A Money Solution

 Don't be thinking this is a post on family finances. Ha. Not even close.

Sundays can be so hard. Steve works, and the twins are home. They get to sleep in, but just messing the schedule even that much throws them a little. I feel like I'm trying to hold back a tidal wave with them pushing the limits. The morning was struggling along as usual when I asked the Lord for wisdom to specifically turn this day around.

The answer was actually fun. Let me introducing you to the money jar.

Bickering between siblings is just not allowed, but the twins take swipes at each other on the sly in ways that appear that they are trying to take each other down a notch and build themselves up. Then they start tattling.

I took a blue sticky note and cut it into strips for James. I used a green one for Missy. I wrote their offenses on them including tattling.  I told them the one with the most stickers at the end of the day would pay the other a dollar for each offense above equal. Believe it or not, the results were instantaneous. I never had to put up another sticker all day.

Next, I took 3 pint jars and put 6 one dollar bills in each (no dollar for Sabbath and no money transactions on that day). I told them if they fought me at any point in the day they would pay me a dollar in the evening. Next Sunday I will take them to the store to spend whatever is left in the jar.

Money is a mysterious concept to Missy. I have decided it won't demystify itself unless I give her opportunity to use and explore it.... so we have a three fold motive for this new program.

They were not using their free time in any sort of play or usefulness.... They had reverted to ZOMBIE mode, which I feel is detrimental to both of them, so I paid them to pick cherry tomatoes. That was $2 for every 8 cup bowl they filled. I could have just told them to pick tomatoes but I would likely have had to gear up for battle. Putting a dollar sign on the end of the request eliminated the needs for armor. They both filled the minimum 1 bowl each. Yes, it took her longer to finish, but there was not a cracked or spoiled one to be found in her bowl!
James' pickings

Missy's pickings
It was like a game of monopoly. At the end of the day James had one more sticker than Missy.... so he paid her a dollar. They both eared $2 picking tomatoes. They both owed me a dollar, one for fighting therapy, and the other for fighting music practice. James jar stayed at $6. Missy's jar is at $7. Mine is at $8.  (I lose dollars for losing patience. I get paid for dealing with nonsense. :). They can only lose a dollar a day for behavior to me, but they can lose a dollar per infraction against each other. They were pretty pleased about everything and enjoyed counting the money and look forward to their Sunday spending spree.

These sort of things don't motivate them to do right generally. It's fun while it is a game. It worked for one day so far. It brought in an element of fun and took their minds off of the misery. Today, we shall see. Missy fought therapy this morning. James used every delay tactic in the book to avoid feeding the chickens, because, as I pointed out to him, he was avoiding going out in the rain.  Missy still managed to be on the bus promptly. James missed breakfast and nearly missed the bus. His fear of raindrops rules the day.

They also had to go running with dad last night for fighting therapy and music practice. Steve figured out that the best place to go, since James is terrified of the dark, is the school racetrack. It is fully lighted and there are ten rows side by side. If they run each of the rows it is 2.5 miles. Steve and Christina are preparing for a half-marathon. The twins are preparing for life. :-)

My pickings.... actually, 5 of these boxes.


3 comments:

Allison Schumm said...

This is a very good idea thanks for sharing.

Mama Ds Dozen said...

Great idea! You win the Creative Mom Award!

Beautiful veggies! Wish we lived close enough to buy from you. :)

I hope this new game works for at least a week (or maybe more?)

Keep up the good work with the twins!!!

Laurel :)

acceptance with joy said...

can't take any credit. I prayed and the Lord answered!