I wrote a post about Teaching Kids about Finances back in October but since April is National Credit Union Youth Month I thought it would be a good time to discuss a few more ways you can teach kids to manage money and live financially smart lives. Let’s face it, finances isn’t one of those really easy things to discuss as a family, I didn’t really know much about my family’s finances growing up. I have a few suggestions for you to help children have a better understanding of finances at their age level and how it can be discussed easily in an everyday setting.

1- Be a Role Model We all know that children follow our example so we need to practice what we preach which means living within our means and being honest about our finances and financial goals. We all want a better life for our children including financially so we need to give them a good example and an honest look at finances. Making a budget and sticking to it is probably one of the best examples.

2- Give a Modest Allowance I believe in giving my children an allowance and allowing them to govern their money, of course this means they have responsibilities to fulfill to receive that money. They are learning that money isn’t just given to them and that they need to earn it. This seems to make them a lot more careful in how they spend their money also. They have become a lot better at saving for what they really want instead of spending a dollar here and a dollar there on things they don’t really care about.

3- Shop with Your Children Take your children grocery shopping, clothes shopping, and even car shopping. Discuss price differences, how much is in the budget for a certain item, and even if you should wait until you save more money before you make the purchase. When they see you making these decisions daily it becomes part of their life and they tend to continue to follow your example. Along with that teach them that you won’t buy them everything they want, teach them the difference between a want and a need, and teach them that it’s okay to wait to purchase something.

4- Share Financial Information Tell your children stories of when you didn’t plan financially or when you were in tough times or even when you planned financially and everything turned out well. Tell them the good, the bad, and the ugly. Of course we’ve all made mistakes, but our children can learn from our financial mistakes. It hard to let your children know that maybe they can’t participate in something because of the cost, but by sharing the family finances they get a better understanding of money and if they’re older they might be able to find a way to contribute to the cost of the event.

5- Value a Good Education We often discuss how education will effect their financial security as an adult. They have researched the pay scale of different careers that interest them and how much college education they will need to achieve their goals. Setting up a college savings account is a great idea and it is never too early to start.

6- Play a Game Playing the Game of Life might seem like a weird way to teach your kids about finances but it’s the perfect learning tool. The game is full of decisions and life choices, the expected and unexpected, and the perfect time to discuss real life situations. They’re having fun but they’re also learning that babies cost money, an education is important, that you have to have a home to live in, and unexpected things happen that can be hard if you haven’t done your best to prepare.

I made a Savings Goal Sheet to help my kids reach some of their little savings goals that you can print out and use too. Just click on the title below the image, right click to save it to your computer, then you can size it to whatever size you like.

Savings Goal Sheet

Savings Goal Sheet

Bear with me a little longer because the last thing I want to share with you is some information I found to be very valuable to help children understand finances at every age. There are 20 important things listed to help them live responsible financial lives and help them start on a good foot as an adult.

3-5 Years

1- You need money to buy things.
2- You earn money by working.
3- You may have to wait before you can buy something you want.
4- There is a difference between things you want and things you need.

6-10 Years

5- You need to make choices about how to spend your money.
6- You should shop around and compare prices before you buy.
7- It can be costly and dangerous to share information online.
8- Putting your money in a savings account will protect it and pay you interest.

11-13 Years

9-You should save at least a dime for every dollar you receive.
10- Entering personal information like a credit card number online could be risky.
11- The sooner you save the faster your money can grow from compound interest.
12- Using a credit card is like taking out a loan. If you don’t pay it back every month, you’ll be charge interest.

14-18 Years

13- Compare cost of colleges.
14- You should avoid using credit cards to buy things you can’t afford to pay for with cash.
15- You first paycheck will be smaller than expected because of taxes being taken out.
16- A good place to save and invest money is in a Roth IRA.

18+ Years

17- You should use a credit card only if you can pay off the money owed in full each month.
18- You need medical insurance
19-It’s important to save at least 3 months worth of living expenses in case of an emergency.
20- When investing consider the risks and annual expenses.

America First Credit Union is celebrating National Credit Union Youth month by holding a few contests to encourage deposits in youth savings accounts. You can even participate through social media accounts using the hashtag #AFCUWildAboutSaving. Find out more information at America First Credit Union.

This post is sponsored by America First Credit Union but all words and opinions expressed are 100% mine.

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Craft Month Giveaway

by leanneja on March 29, 2015 · 1 comment

in Crafts, Giveaways

Do you remember that I shared with you a giveaway that would be associated with the Craft Month A-Z series? You can check out my Number Stamped Coasters I crafted for the series if you missed them and then come back here to enter this awesome Craft Month Giveaway. Here are the generous sponsors and 2 Winners will get to play and create with these fun supplies.

giveaway craft month

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Green and White Easter Mantel

by leanneja on March 28, 2015 · 0 comments

in Decorating, Easter, Mantels

It’s about time I’m sharing my Easter mantel. I’m feeling so behind this year. I can’t believe Easter is only a week away. I guess the Easter bunny needs to go shopping soon or the kids aren’t going to have anything Easter morning. Anyway, I’m super excited to have my mantel done. It’s simple but I really love it! There’s just something about green and white that appeals to me. It feels clean and fresh and uncluttered.

Green and White Easter Mantel

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Decorative Wood Spheres

by leanneja on March 26, 2015 · 1 comment

in Crafts, Decorating, DIY, Knock-offs, Paint

There are so many trends I really love and I love updating my home often but I can’t justify spending money on the new trends especially when we’re on a tight budget. If you really like something there’s usually a way you can make a similar item without spending a lot of money. I love the spheres or orbs I was seeing in the catalogs coming to my door but knew I would never be able to buy them, so I made my own. These Decorative Wood Spheres were a very small fraction of the cost of the original ones and I love how they turned out. Another great thing about making you own knock-offs is you can change the color or tweak the design any way you like to make it fit with your home design and decor.

Decorative Wood Sphere

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3 Ingredient Chocolate Pots

by leanneja on March 25, 2015 · 0 comments

in Recipes

Let me start by proclaiming my love of chocolate. Believe it or not, I actually went 2 years without having one little bit of chocolate pass my lips. I might try that again some day, but not today because these 3 Ingredient Chocolate Pots are so delicious and decadent that I can’t resist. Don’t worry that each serving is only 1/2 cup, that’s more than plenty to give you a rich delicious chocolate fix.

3 Ingredient Chocolate Pots.1

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I love changing my mantel with the holidays and with the seasons. It’s a way of bringing something fresh to my home without having to change all of the decor. Since the mantel is a focal point it’s something that is really noticeable when it’s changed. Guests will notice your new mantel decor so they won’t even notice you haven’t changed anything else in your house for the last year. Just kidding, kinda! I’m sharing with you some of my favorite Spring Mantel Decorating Ideas to help you with ideas for your own mantel. The images are pretty self explanatory so I’m just going to share some ideas about each decorated mantel.

Spring Mantel Decorating Ideas

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Number Stamped Coasters

by leanneja on March 21, 2015 · 4 comments

in Crafts, Decorating

March is National Craft Month, not that I need an excuse to craft or anything. I’m really excited to be participating in Crafting in the Rain Craft Month A-Z again this year. This is the 3rd week of the series and I chose the letter “N” because I love numbers. I wanted to share how to make these really easy Number Stamped Coasters. I never seem to have enough coasters and I had everything on hand to make these so why not create,  right?

Number Stamped Coasters

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St. Patrick’s day is over, Spring is here and it’s time to start thinking about Easter. I love Easter and you know I love printables so I decided to start with the Easter bunny and make these cute Hoppy Easter Bunny printables. I’ll be adding a couple more printables as it gets closer to Easter.

Hoppy Easter

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This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Dollar General for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

When I think Spring I think of walks in the park, dinner on the patio, blossoms on the trees, and sharing ways to Brighten Your Home With Spring Decor. I crave sunlight and apparently the rest of my family does too. The first person to get downstairs every morning opens all the blinds to let in as much light as possible. It brightens up the whole house and seems to help start the morning off right.

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DIY Globe Bookends

by leanneja on March 16, 2015 · 1 comment

in Crafts, Decorating, Paint

It’s time to make another quick craft from my craft stash and this one is even functional. I’m always grateful to have a stash of crafting supplies. Sometimes I just want to create and having the supplies in my craft room is good for my psychi. These DIY globe bookends serve a purpose on the bookshelf and will also look great on the mantel when I decorate for back-to-school. They might even end up in the boys room at some point since they already have a collection of globes. I love decorating my home in items that can be used in multiple rooms. It allows me to change things around without spending any money.

globe bookends

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