You see, about 6 months ago, I bought her a pair of TOMS. At the time, we talked about how when we buy TOMS, "Tom" gives a pair of shoes to another little boy or girl who doesn't have any shoes. We bought them just a smidge big so she could wear them for several month. During that time, she became quite adept at spotting TOMS on others. "Hey! That lady has on TOMS, too!"
Well, inevitably, she outgrew her shoes. And then proceed to look up at me and say "My TOMS don't fit anymore so you better buy me new ones." Truth be told, had she asked sweetly, I probably would have made a beeline to the store, but demanding toddlers don't sit well with me. I informed her that she didn't just get free stuff because she was a cute kid and that maybe she needed to save up her own money and buy the shoes. (I heard that "Aw! You're so mean!" sigh. Trust me, it's not like this child doesn't already have 400 other pairs of shoes...)
"Um, all my money goes into Evil Doctor Porkchop (her piggy bank, a la Toy Story) and Mommy won't let me get it out." she said, with a bit too much sass, as if she had outsmarted me.
"No problem. We'll just need to make you a separate place to save some of your money. A TOMS fund. And, if you work hard to save up half the money, I'll give you the other half of the money." That's very "One for One", right? I figured "Tom" would approve.
And thus, the TOMS Fund was born. We even worked together to make a pretty canister. Unlike her Evil Doctor Porkchop money, I told my immediate family I thought she needed to earn this money. So she helped pick up at my mom's house, helped my grandma carry in a sack of groceries, helped her mom with other chores, and earned nearly all the necessary $15 pretty quickly. And, since Easter egg hunting kind of counts as work, a few dollars hidden in eggs rounded out the fund.
So, Saturday afternoon, we set out to buy her shoes. The deal was that she could pick out whatever pair she wanted.
|She learned about saving money... but not about looking|
at the camera for pictures.
All along, she'd been saying she wanted a black sparkly pair like mine. Of course, plans change when you get to the store and see all the choices. She tried on three different colors of sparkly TOMS, a few printed pairs, and a burlap pair with flowers. Pair after pair, she declared she didn't want those today. I explained to her that today was when we were at the store, not tomorrow or the next day, so if she didn't pick a pair now, she was just out of luck. Her mom added "Or we can just go to my size and you can buy me a pair..." Suddenly, MJ decided on her three favorites. Eventually, the burlap with flowers won...
Next, we proceeded to the check out. This is where I expected a meltdown. I figured the prospect of handing her hard-earned money over to the cashier might induce a fit. Instead, MJ handed the jar to the cashier and said "Look! Every day I've been saving my monies for TOMS..." The cashier was fantastic and really made a big deal about how great it was the MJ saved up her money.
With that, I ponied up my half and the transaction was complete. She carried the bag out of the store and thanked me for her TOMS. I thanked her too and told her how I was so proud of her for saving up for half.
(Also, a big thank you to Wilkinson's in Conway. They didn't bat an eye at the diva toddler requesting to try on half their TOMS inventory!)