I come from a long line of frugal family members.
It’s not uncommon for my grandparents to go out to eat at Braum’s and split a hamburger.
Growing up, my parents were frugal too, so it doesn’t surprise me that I tend to be careful with money.
Some of it is because of personal conviction, but a lot is simply from habit, and my frugal ways began early.
There are specific lessons I remember my parents teaching me. My dad said cars depreciate quickly in the first two years, so that is why I buy used cars with cash. I also remember him showing me a check for $400 that he received from an investment.
But even more was unspoken, and I soaked it all in watching how my parents spent money. Sometimes my perception wasn’t always accurate. I remember when my parents made homemade root beer and filled up several milk jugs with it. At the time I wondered if we couldn’t afford to buy root beer from the store. My mom shopped very carefully. I didn’t want to ask for things, and preferred to buy them myself.
When I married Doug, we had to decide together how we were going to manage our finances, and thankfully we tend to balance each other.
Regardless of parents’ sound advice (or lack of it), at some point we all have to make our own decision for how we will handle our money. We may still have tendencies that were shaped by our childhood, but we can consider them and try to work on new habits. And this whole topic makes me wonder:
What example are we going to set for our kids? Will we teach them what they need to know, and are we living an example of financial stewardship?
What are your thoughts? What did your parents teach you? For those of you who have kids, what are you trying to teach them about money?