I always forget when we sign up for 4-H way back in September that life somehow gets incredibly busy right about the middle of March, when we start getting ready for the Alameda County Fair and selling Ducks for Bucks, but this year, the schedule has been insanely busy, mainly because Chance is doing a Tech Challenge, and some of our other projects have had extra events and outings. We finally have two days off in a row, and we’re just breathing! Jack and I took a walk with Luke this afternoon while Chance finished up the frame for the waterwheel with his friend C, and we had a very nice conversation about what it means to be frugal. I gave him examples of how a miser would live, and how that is quite different from a frugal person. We decided together that our family is a “Relaxed Frugal” family, since we do buy some things not on sale, and sometimes we even splurge on extras. Jack specifically brought up my new shoes that i brought when I needed to go to the mall to find a shirt for Chance’s presentation, but I defended myself (lamely, perhaps) that I’d been thinking about getting shoes for a while, and I will wear them for a good long time! Jack just laughed at me, and decided that he isn’t always frugal himself, but honestly, he’s very good about saving his money until something comes up that he really wants. He really thinks about his purchases, and almost never buys anything on the spur of the moment. Chance, on the other hand, can be more impulsive, and I find myself trying to talk him out of purchases, or to at least think about it for a little while before buying things. Chance also has never met a treat he doesn’t like, he’ll buy bars of chocolate for himself at the store (we are giving them an allowance every week just for these kinds of lessons – I don’t buy them the treats/toys anymore, it has to be a conscious decision on their part). Jack does without the treats so as to have more money in his pocket. We’re also looking into getting them a bank account linked to ours at the credit union (so they don’t have a minimum), and the first thing Chance asked was “Can I get my own debit card? What is the interest rate on the account?”. Even Luke has a little nest egg from all the little gifts a certain indulgent aunt sends in the mail – he’s gotten a few little things (like a rubber snake that the boys have been torturing each other with for the last few days), but the kid really does NOT need any more toys!