Saturday, May 1, 2010

Ryan's Photo Shoot

As before with Brandon, about 1.5 years ago, the same photographer decided to use Ryan for a modeling job. The clothing line, les enfant, is a pretty big clothing label over here. Brandon had modeled for Baby Disney and now Ryan for les enfant. This time, it was Ryan's turn to strut his stuff before the camera for a real paying modeling job! ;-)

I had asked Ryan if this was something he wanted to do and because he had been there when Brandon had done it, he was all for it. Brandon had been able to use the money he had earned for a toy that he liked. Ryan was excited about the prospect of earning his own money. So, once again, I talked to him about this being a job and that he had to do what the photographer instructed. I asked him if he thought he could or wanted to do that. He definitely was up for it.

So, we made our way to the studio and Ryan got his turn under the bright lights and in front of the camera. He did ok and they got a few decent shots. If he wasn't hamming it up TOO much, he acted shy. The photographer got a run for his money with him, I think. haha

After a couple of hours, Ryan got officially paid for his work. He was sooooo excited! His little face lit up and he carefully opened the envelope and pulled up out all of the 100 RMB bills! He said, " much money!" It was so cute!

UNlike with Brandon, I decided to give Ryan some better tools of how he could and should spend his money. Brandon had ended up spending his entire amount on a plastic toy at Toyr-R-Us that broke eventually. Brandon asked where his toy was and I mentioned that his had broken. So begins our first lesson for Ryan. I explained that it would be wise to think more carefully about what kinds of toys and things Ryan should spend his money on...he didn't want to spend it on toys that would break too quickly. And once he spent his money on the toy, he should think about taking good care of that toy, so he has it for a long time.

The entire next day were additional lessons on good financial sense. To my amazement, the boys were soaking it up! We learned about quality of toys. We learned about the difference between spending money on one big thing or several little things. We talked about thinking about saving some of the money in case we need/want some for later. We talked about giving to others who didn't have money like we did.

We talked about wise investments. We were at at a grocery store and Ryan really wanted a scooter. I asked him if it was smarter to use his money on something he could take with us to Hawaii, thus keeping it for a longer time...or if he thought he should spend his money on something like a scooter that he could only use for two more weeks. He thought about it and after pushing around the scooter for awhile, he changed his mind and decided on a toy that he could fit inside our suitcases. Wise choice, I told him. He thought so too.

We talked about the numbers on the price tags and which ones would use up more of his money and which ones would use less of it, thus giving him more money to spend later. Each time he bought something with his money, I made sure he pulled out the bills and handed them to the cashier. He was very excited to get the change back and carefully put the change inside the envelope. After each transaction, he would glance inside the envelope and excitedly tell me he has more money...which was a good reinforcement for our "savings" lesson.

So, Ryan is very happy, having earned some of his very own money. Next week...who knows...maybe we'll talk about stock options and savings plans. But, another good thing about taking a little extra time with Ryan this time around, is that Brandon is standing there next to him, getting the lessons too. And, even better, Brandon knows the "burn" of having spent his money all at once, on a crappy toy that didn't last very long. Immediately, I heard Brandon in the aisles of the store, telling his little brother his opinion about the quality of each toy Ryan looked at and whether he thought it was a good idea or not. ;-)

Now, when the boys are running around and Ryan see something he likes, I have asked him, "Do you have money?" and he excitedly tells me, "Yes, Mommy!! I do have money!" And depending on what he is looking at, our lessons start all over again. haha

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