Tithing isn't the only way to give stuff away. When you have come to that point where you can say enough, then there are many ways to get rid of stuff. If you need tips on how to declutter your house, check out Flylady.net.
Here are some great outlets for your unloved, or unused goodies:
1. Return It! If it is still new, take it back to the store. Some stores are even relaxing their return policy so that you can return things without a receipt. And store credit to buy something you really want is better than hanging onto something you don't.
2. Regift it. It's really not that ugly of a word. If you know someone who really would like it, then it is not tacky. It seems silly to spend $20 at a store, when the perfect gift is in your declutter pile.
3. Sell it on EBay. This takes more time, and you have to decide if it is worth it. Items have to be in good working condition, and valued at more than a couple dollars. You could end up spending more time and money on fees and maintenance than the item is actually worth. But they have just relaxed their selling costs, so it may be worth a try.
4. Check out Etsy.com This is for antique or handmade items only. Supplies to hand make items also qualify. But listings last longer so the value for your time may be increased.
5. List it on Craigslist This is especially good for large, hard to ship items. It is similar to an online want ad.
6. Consignment Stores A great outlet for kids toys and clothes. Many times they will give you cash on the spot for items that you bring in.
7. Freecycle.org If you just want to get rid of the stuff, people will come to your house and pick it up. The catch is it has to be free, and it is strange people coming to your house, and you have to choose one person out of the many emails to deem worthy of your junk.
8. Goodwill, Salvation Army, NuWay, Etc. Feel good about helping others out with your donated items. You can also claim fair market value on your taxes.
9. Trade your items on Zwaggle or Swaptree Get points for things you give away and then use the points to acquire other items form the site. The big catch is that you have to wait for someone to want your stuff before you can get rid of it.
10. Give it to your extended family There's a good chance that's where most of it came from in the first place
11. Contact your local shelters Women's shelters are often looking for household items or women's clothes. Animal shelters use blankets and towels.
12. Have a yard sale This is usually only worth it if you have a lot of stuff, or you really need the money. trying getting together with friends or neighbors to share the work.
13. Curb it We have had success just putting things out on the curb with a free sign. We have also sold things (cars, table saws, dressers, tomatoes) by placing them in our driveway with a for sale sign. Just be prepared for someone to take it without paying, if you aren't there.
14. Throw it away If it is truly trash, don't try to pawn it off on someone else. recycle what you can, and send the rest on its way!
Spend time each day getting a little bit more room in your house. You will be surprised how much stuff you won't miss. The catch with many of these places: thrift stores, consignment shops, eBay, etc. YOU CAN"T BUY MORE STUFF! Cause other wise, you just have more stuff.
I am hoping my kids see that we don't need to just collect and collect things. I want them to learn that with money, and with things, we are a generous family that can give out of the richness of our hearts.
Do you have other outlets for passing stuff on, leave me a comment. Thank you to Jen for compiling this list.
Whether you believe you were created, or think that you out smarted your past monkey relatives, it is impossible to believe that you could have done it on your own.
Tithing demonstrates an acceptance of life. By only using 90% of what you earn, your are signaling that you are happy with what you have, and therefore do not need to scrounge for every last penny.
Tithing Creates a feeling of thankfulness Giving away a regular percent of your income, makes you appreciate the things that you already have.
Tithing Makes You Generous If you can give away money that you have earned, how much more freely could you give away things that are extra in your life.
Tithing opens Awareness When you are purposefully giving 10% of your income, you are more likely to be mindful of the other 90% of your paycheck.
Tithing makes you Rich If you are willing to voluntarily give up 10% of your income, you have moved from living hand to mouth, to living wealthy. Regardless of what you earn.
Tithing Makes you Feel Better People who give have a more positive outlook in life. A positive outlook will encourage smiling, which is good for your health.
These are all things that I want my kids to learn about money, what about you?
We just returned from a picnic in the park. This has become our Thursday routine - meeting Daddy for lunch at a park. Even though we have lunch with him at home nearly every day, eating lunch out just makes it more special some how. Plus, Daddy loves an excuse to ride his motorcycle.
Besides loving my family, I also reflected on how rich I feel. So for this things I love Thursday, I want to share with you my top ten.
Top Ten Ways I can feel Rich without Actually Being Rich
1. We actually have a budget that we can live within
2. We live debt free
3. We have extremely generous families
4. We live in a small house in a small town that is paid for
5. We have the best neighbors ever
6. We are easy to entertain. Is it no wonder that many classic American games were invented during the Great Depression?
7. We have cheap friends.
8. We buy museum passes. And we go all the time (did I mention we were easy to entertain?)
9. We only need one car. The only out of home wage earner walks to work ( I mentioned small town already didn't I?)
10. We give Tithe. Something about giving away stuff that makes you feel like you have more than you need.
What does this teach my kids about money?
Being rich is a state of mind. They are so busy doing fun things, that they do not have the time to stop and wish for more. These kids would feel poor, if they thought that they were missing out, but since we feel rich, they feel rich. So I want my kids to learn that you don't need money to feel rich.
What makes you feel rich?
For more Things I Love Thursday fun, hop over to thediaperdiaries.net.
This book is a follow up to yesterday's port Rich People will Always have cooler Stuff.
If You Give a Mouse a Cookie by Laura Joffe Numeroff
A little boy offers a cookie to a mouse which starts a cause and effect adventure all through the house. The mouse asks for one thing after another until finally coming full circle back to the cookie
How to Teach Money to Kids with this Book
Some people like this little mouse will never be satisfied. If you get them one thing, they are going to want something else to go with it. I thought this was a great book to start the discussion about why sometimes I say no to different purchases. I used the example of Mega Blocks. My son received a Mega block dump truck for his birthday, but I took it back to the store. He didn't really notice, but my daughter did, and she wanted to know why, especially since it was free, why didn't we just keep it.
Well, if we keep the dump truck, you are going to want to have the blocks that go with it, and if we get the blocks, then you are going to want the castle set that goes with the blocks. So it makes since to just not get the dump truck in the first place.
If we take the dump truck back, they will give us money back, and we can use the money to buy something that is already on our list. Plus, if we start getting mega blocks, then we would run out of room for the toys that we have, and we would have to get rid of some of those toys.
I think seeing the cause and effect that this book emphasized was a great lesson in the what ifs of accumulating more that you need
While looking for more information, I stumbled on this site that has a whole evening of activities planned around this book. Your family could have a great time playing games together
Do you have other ideas for how this book could be used to teach money to kids?
Check out more ideas at WFMW at We are That Family.
Where did the penguin put her money?
In the snow BANK...
This could be a great way to kick off a silly conversation about money:
1. How would a penguin make money?
2. What do you think a penguin would buy?
3. Do you think Penguins ever retire?
The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want.
What a great verse to teach kids! If they keep the Lord as their shepherd, they shall not want. This is true in many ways:
1. They will desire God, first and foremost, and God will comply.
2. God will take care of their needs.
3. We will stop looking for greener pastures, and wanting more, and more and more...
4. When God blesses, He blesses until our cup runneth over.
Practice this verse, so that you can share it with your kids, and help them memorize it, too.
There are so many reasons why I love these sandwich boxes, that I am going to incorporate the Thursday 13.
How did the Baker get so wealthy?
He made lots of dough...
Actually jokes are a great way to teach kids vocabulary and double meaning, so if you have any great money jokes, I would love to share them. Every Sunday, I hope to post a new one.
The Best Nest by P.D. Eastman, part of the I can read it all by myself series with many other Dr. Seuss books. This book can be found at your local library, or any major bookstore. Many of you may have read this story when you were little.
Mrs. Bird decided that she does not like her old nest and wants to upgrade. They look everywhere for a better nest. They finally find what they think is perfect and then they have to fill it with new stuff. The nest is not perfect and they end up back at the old nest, but with a new attitude.
Using this book with kids
This is a great book to jump start a discussion about being happy with what you have. Lead the discussion with questions like: Why didn't Mrs. Bird like her first house? What was Mrs. Birds attitude about her house? Why did she like the house at the church?
When they had to make a new nest, why didn't they just bring the old nest? What happened to that new nest? Where did they end up? How is this like people buying stuff?
Some of the points that you may want to bring out:
1. Sometimes new things mean you have to buy more and more things, which makes them extra expensive
2. Fixing up something that you already have may be better than finding something new
3. your attitude changes the way you look at things
4. Check everything very thoroughly before you buy it. You may have an unexpected surprise
Check out other summer reading ideas at the Happy Housewife.
One concern that we had about getting a dog was our kids. Well, they actually created many concerns.
1. Would our kids be afraid of Shadow?
Our kids were so excited to have a dog. they really felt like they had saved him, especially after we told them the story of where he was living, and the BIG dog we heard behind the door.
Right away Shadow started following our kids all through the house. This is how he came to be named Shadow (we thought marshmallow was a silly name for a boy dog).
2. Would our kids take care of our dog?
There is something about giving responsibility to kids, that just makes them flourish. Miss Love gets to let him in and out of his kennel in the morning and whenever we have to go somewhere. She knows that she earned this job because she is the only one that can open the latch, which is a skill that she practiced so that the job could be hers. (Shadow gets a little paranoid if he is left alone, so we have to put him in the kennel, even if we just run down to the basement for minute)
The Frog Prince got the job of giving Shadow his food. He earned this job by being the one that was the most careful to not spill the food when putting it into the bowl.
3. Would our kids treat him nice?
This one I was the most worried about. Our neighbors have a big, hyper dog (one of the reasons I was worried our kids might be afraid of having a dog). This dog has knocked them over numerous times. Our thoughtful neighbor knows that my kids are wary about Molly (the golden retriever) and tries to calm her down right away.
Well really I think it makes the whole thing worse, because they both yell at the dog like it might kill something, which only adds to the fear factor. They also talk so mean to the dog, that I worried our kids would copy.
I am grateful to say that the power of our influence as parents has overridden the power of the bad example. Our kids talk nicely to Shadow (and Molly for that matter). They use a firm but friendly tone of voice and even say encouraging things when our dog listens.
As a parent this gives me great hope. I know that there are so many bad examples out there: people wanting it all, spending more than they make, stealing or cheating. It would be easy to think that our kids are going to want to be like that, too. But I know that our influence as parents has a huge impact on the choices that they make. Kids can filter out bad choices and make good ones.
I love to eat them fresh, just bite them right off the stem. Or sliced up on a bowl of vanilla ice cream. And they are so good dipped in chocolate, or cool whip or with vanilla pudding. They are great in green salads or fruit salads. I love to put them on top of waffles or pancakes or French toast, or even just cheerios. I cannot get enough strawberries.
Even though we get so many from our little patch, I still go and pick more. That way I can make strawberry jam or we can freeze them to put in smoothies for the rest of the year.
And still it is not enough strawberries. When I see strawberries on sale at the market, I cannot resist them. Because wouldn’t it be great to have strawberry shortcake or strawberry pie? So I buy even more strawberries. Because I cannot get enough.
Which is why I have set aside these strawberries. If I waited until I had enough strawberries, I would never be willing to let go of them. So I have brought my first fruits, as a thank you for the way that God has provided for our family. I am able to give these away, not because they are extra and I have enough already. I am giving these because it was God that gave them to me in the first place.
So as you prepare to give your offerings, don’t worry about whether or not you will have enough, God has promised to provide. And all He asks is that you bring your first fruits or offerings.
It has an easy on/off switch, it picks up all sorts of crumbs (especially cheerios or dog food), and it reaches under our table. It comes with a rechargeable battery pack, and an easy to empty collection bin underneath.
But really, I am saving the best feature for last. My two year old can use it by himself! I am so proud of him. Especially since most of the under the table messes come from his end of the table. He eagerly turns the sweeper on and will clean the whole kitchen floor.
Aaahhhhh....This is why we had kids, wasn't it? To teach them how to do all the work around here.
Well maybe not ALL the work.
But when it comes to money, this is what I want them to learn:
1. Everyone contributes big or small, financially or physically
2. Basic skills so that they can eventually work for a living or
2b. Not have to hire someone to do these basic skills
3. Being aware that eventually someone has to clean up that mess
4. Sometimes a cool tool turns a chore into a game (this makes me want to sing like Mary Poppins)