How to Stop the "Mom, Can I have....?"

Do you ever get overwhelmed with these?

  • Mom can I have …?
  • Mom I want to go to …?
  • Mom can we get …?

I know I did.

I found a couple of things that have really helped with this.

Give your Child an Allowance

For my 7 year old and 9 year old this is $10 a month.  No, this isn’t a ton of money, but what do they really need to buy for themselves anyway?  This covers the fake glue-on nails my 9 year old wants.  It covers the packs of gum and latest Bakugan toy my son wants.  It’s usually enough to buy a book at the book fair too.   It’s amazing how much more discerning they’ve become with their “wants” when it has to come out of their money instead of mine.

Create a Help Wanted Sign


We have a small whiteboard that says Help Wanted across the top and lists additional activities we’d like done around the house and how much we’re willing to pay for it.  For example, right now we have:

  • Clean Dog Poop $5 per yard
  • Pair Socks $2 per basket
  • Clean Toilets $1 each

I have to admit this isn’t my idea.  I read about it on someones blog about 8 months ago and can’t remember where I read it.  While we had a extra chores that the kids could do if they ever wanted to earn money, we hadn’t put them on a Help Wanted sign until I read that article.

Help them Earn from Other People

My 7 year old son was thrilled to learn that he could earn money by collecting aluminum cans.  In fact, we just got back from his third time recycling where he received $21.44!  The current rate (where we go) is $0.72 per pound of aluminum cans.  I bring the cans from work home from him and he put fliers up on our neighbors’ houses letting them know he’ll collect cans on Mondays after school.  It’s a fun way to get to know your neighbors also!

For older kids, there is babysitting, leaf raking, lawn mowing, and plenty more if they (and you) just get a little creative.

How do you handle kids’ wants in your house?


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