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Subject:  DD's Happy Dance Date:  1/8/2013  9:35 PM
Author:  ThyPeace Number:  306668 of 310154

Some of you may remember how DD, when she was four, worked hard to earn the funds necessary to buy herself a Cinderella dress. It's been six years since then. Her goals are bigger, but so are her abilities. Here's a story about her latest accomplishment.

This afternoon, DD and I went to the Apple Store. She was so excited that she was literally jumping up and down, which made it hard to talk to her seriously about very much at all. Today, you see, she achieved a mighty goal of hers. She had the funds to purchase her very first “iSomething,” as she calls it.

The story starts back in September when I was running numbers for our remodeling project. DD asked what I was doing. When I tried to explain that it was budgeting for our remodel, and that it looked like there wasn’t going to be enough money for everything we wanted to do, she asked where we would get more money.

"Well," I said, trying to be thoughtful and grownup about it, "we can earn more money, we can use more savings, or we can borrow--"

"Let's earn it!" she interrupted. Always one to get to the point. "How do we earn it? Can you work more at your job?"

I can't, really. I'm a Federal employee and overtime isn't really an option. So I would have to get another job, and maybe spend time away from her. She didn't like that idea. "What else can we do?"

"Well, we could make things and sell them, I suppose."

"Could you make candy and sell it?" No, you would eat all of it.

"How about donuts? Can you make donuts???" Err, definitely not.

"Toys?" No, you would use all of them.

"How about light bulbs?" Err. I don't know how to make those. About the only thing we know how to make is pot holders, really.

And thus was born the Potholders For Remodeling project. It morphed into the “iSomething” project after I explained that putting a lot more money into the remodeling project might mean that we would have to cut back on cool stuff for her. I encouraged the shift, as I wanted her to be able to have a tangible accomplishment sometime this decade.

She worked at it really hard, especially after her grandma helped make the first sales a reality. Grandma’s friends then came back and asked for more to use as Christmas gifts, as they were very happy with them. DD also asked adult friends to buy them, and many of them indulged her with a small purchase, and then came back for follow-up purchases. At $5 each, they were an easy stocking stuffer or small gift. And also vastly underpriced in terms of the labor that goes into them!

After a lot of work and receiving a few Christmas presents, this past weekend it was time to count the money and see where we were.

She had deposited $157 in the bank in early December, and I put another $50 in the bank for her from a Christmas gift later. Since then, she got a $50 American Express gift card, and brought in another $95 in cash from potholders, gifts, and allowance (mostly potholders). Why is this important? Well, the end result is $352.

$352 is a decent amount of money. But DD has had her sites set on an iPad. Somewhere along the way she saw a cool case for an iPad at Justice (her favorite store), and in her mind's eye, that's where she has been seeing herself ever since. An iPad is an expensive thing for a kid. And the one she wanted to get was still almost $100 away. Over the weekend, we went through all that, with the tears and frustration that went with it. She desperately wanted that iPad. An iPad Mini would not do. An iPod Touch would not do. It was the iPad she wanted.

So we talked about how it would take 15 more potholders to get there, and how that's really not that many. She worked for quite a while on the potholders currently in the queue.

Yesterday afternoon, after more thinking, she said to me, "