In an effort to help my husband and I “see the big picture” better and help my teenager realize that money truly doesn’t grow on trees, I spent most of Friday afternoon and evening with an old software version of Quicken (I didn’t like the new fancier versions) and I set up (gasp!) a budget. Yep, one in which I set up yearly allotments for everything—food, clothes, even school supplies and dog grooming. And while I think I did a pretty good job, Allison was not happy with it one bit. Oh, I don’t think I’m going to let her see the whole thing, because she’d get even madder if she saw that other “stupid” things like UTILITIES got more than she did. (Wait…then again, maybe it would make her turn off more lights and quit taking 30 minute showers, if she thought it would mean more money in her pocket!) But I did let her know the amount she’s been “allotted” for spring clothes, since she’s been chomping at the bit to go shopping for weeks, and according to her, the amount she’s been given will “barely cover underwear and one pair of shoes” (not true, unless maybe you’re Paris Hilton).
With her tastes, she is going to have to either learn the joys of bargain hunting or get creative in coming up with ways to earn money. And, she’s going to have to stop getting upset with what she’s given— because she got so mad about the new budget, she threw papers around my office and clothes all over the front hall. And as a result, she now has no one to take her shopping this weekend, anyway!