Graceful and Elegant have discovered the power of the almighty dollar.
The girls each get a monthly allowance that's equivalent to their age in years, so Graceful currently gets $8/month and Elegant gets $6. On occasion, relatives will send the girls money, such as for holidays or for being so darn cute. And Pete and I sometimes pay them for extra effort, such as a few weeks ago when they worked hard in the yard with us.
As it happens, the girls don't actually spend their money very often -- they much prefer to amass riches and count their gold regularly. It got to the point that Graceful had almost $200 in her wallet, which was just too much, so I took the girls to open savings accounts. I suggested that they each keep about $40 in their wallets and let the bank manage the rest, while stressing that the girls can access their accounts whenever they need a larger amount of money. What they'd need that money for, I have no earthly idea. We also told the girls that, for every $100 they save in their accounts, we'd deposit a bonus from us to reward them for being good savers.
When I make deposits for the girls, I make a point to bring home the receipts and the girls' bank books to show them exactly what I did and let them see how their savings have grown.
Graceful loves having a savings account and makes a point to keep her wallet money at exactly $40. She's surpassed the $200 mark in her bank account and is looking forward to hitting $300. She has a basic understanding of earning interest and loves that the bank is paying her for the pleasure of holding onto her money.
Elegant, on the other hand, is a money-under-the-mattress kind of girl. She prefers to have a huge wad of cash in her wallet and likes to count it, carefully and slowly, while sorting the money by denominations. She can quickly add up the numbers in her head and thinks she has a pretty impressive net worth.
So, all of this is a long way of explaining that the girls are figuring out the value of money and what they can do to earn more.
A couple of nights ago, Pete fixed tortillas for dinner. For whatever reason, the girls swear they hate melted cheese and always want just plain old cold shredded cheese in their tortillas. They will, however, eat melted cheese on pizza. Go figure. Pete got so frustrated with them on Thursday that he bribed them each $1 to eat a tortilla with melted cheese. I believe that Graceful may be a contender for future speed-eating contests, because she practically inhaled her dinner and, at the last bite, had her hand out for the $1.
Tonight, Pete and Graceful were talking about different foods that she used to eat when she was a baby but that she now swears she doesn't like, such as avocados. Pete explained why he thinks Graceful would like avocados.
Graceful thought about it and replied, "I'd try one for a dollar."