Saturday, April 25, 2009

The iPod Quest: Week 1 Report

Yeah, I know, we're full of drama -- everything's either a "saga" or a "quest" at our house.

All drama aside, Alex is doing great. This week he swept two driveways, washed a car, mowed two lawns, and weeded two flower beds. Here he is weeding away like an iPod-obsessed animal:

Looks like he has dirt in his teeth from all that weeding. He's hard core like that.

So you're probably curious to know the grand total of his earnings. Drum roll please...

The wildman earned no less than $35.40. If I'm lyin', I'm dyin'. That puts him ahead of his goal of $30 per week. After paying 10% to tithing, 10% to savings, and 10% to his mission fund, he's left with $24.78 in the iPod fund.

What's cool about this whole thing is all the teaching moments that arise for a wide range of topics.

For example, he's learning a lot of math. Every day that he comes home with money, we sit down and walk through the math. He's learning addition, subtraction, decimal points, and percentages.

He's learning how to present himself, do a door approach, and interact with customers. (Yes, Kristi, we had a nice talk after he finished at your house. I told him that he can only go into customers' houses to go to the bathroom or to call us when he's done).

He's learning that it's much easier to market to a warm market, rather than to make cold contacts. (Thanks so much to everyone who has offered to give him jobs!)

He's learning about how circumstances and people fall into place as soon as we commit to a goal.

He's learning to be a finisher (although I have to manage that part).

He's learning that commitments can be hard (he hasn't played much with friends this week, and it's a constant struggle for him).

He's learning the satisfaction of receiving fair pay for honest work.

He's learning that we can earn and achieve anything we want in this life through focus, dedication, and persistence.

He's learning the value of delayed gratification.

I could continue. He's such a good kid and I'm so proud of him. I think I'm going to be more excited to buy the iPod than he is.

Thanks again to everyone giving him opportunities to achieve his goal. Thanks for being patient and understanding with him. Thanks for not giving him something when he hasn't earned it. Parenting is definitely a community effort, and we very much appreciate your support, guidance, and encouragement in the lives of our children.


DIANE said...

I wish I lived by you so I could hire him. What a little hard worker. I can't wait for him to achieve his goal.

Judy Francisco said...

My suggestion is to schedule some play time in order to bring balance to the overall process/learning experience. If you/he already have, then ignore this post! :)

Stephen Palmer said...

Well, you'll have to take that up with him, because everything is his choice and is self-initiated.

Mary Bonham said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Mary Bonham said...

Well written. I actually could see a movie of Alex with his beautiful smile knocking on a door! Way to go!

Rhyetta Musser said...

Too astounded and impressed for words!

Liz in New York said...

How impressive, truly. I remember the best missionaries on my mission were the ones who knew from past experience how to work hard. Clearly, Alex is right on track.

Kristi said...

I learned a lot about the process too! Alex was great to work with, I hope Bentley can grow up to be a good kid and a hard worker. Thanks for letting us be part of your village ; )