We’ve all heard that we should simplify our Christmases, but it can be easier said than done. Even those of us who make a concerted effort not to go overboard with gifts can find ourselves buying stuff our kids don’t need just to have something to put under the tree. Add in grandparents, aunts and uncles and other relatives, and that “modest” gift pile can start to tower. At the end of it all, it’s easy to find ourselves looking at a pile of wrapping paper and wondering if some of that money spent could have been put to better use.
Sure, you can always give an older child cash, but where’s the fun in that? (Plus, as I’ve learned from experience, it’s only too easy for kids to pocket that $20 from Grandma, and then lose it in the wash or fritter it away on junk at the corner store.)
Even a small portion of the money you spend on holiday gifts could add up to big savings – and progress toward big goals – if it’s tucked away, but that’s often easier said than done. That’s why I’m excited to partner with Kidworth, a new site dedicated to helping kids share, save, and spend with help from parents and other supportive family members.
Here’s how it works: Parents register a free account and set up a page for each child with that child’s financial goals (buying a bicycle, starting a college fund, donating to a favorite charity, etc.) Then, parents can “share” those goals via email or social networking sites like Facebook with relatives and friends. For holidays, birthdays, or just because, your friends and family can help your child work toward his goal by purchasing a gift card. You can also pay for chores and allowances via a Kidworth gift card and the money will go into your child’s Kidworth account. Parents are notified of any gifts via email, and the funds can be withdrawn (via a mailed check) at any time.
I love that Kidworth lets kids follow along – and get fired up! -as they get closer to their financial goals, and provides an organized and trackable method for parents and relatives to give without worrying that that $20 will be stashed in a pocket, never to be seen again. Plus, since getting the money out involves a bit of a wait (plus permission from Mom and Dad) it’ll curb impulse spending. Even if you don’t want to ask your great-aunt Agnes to switch from her yearly Christmas cash-in-a-card to a Kidworth gift, you can easily deposit some of the cash and then “gift” it to your child’s account. The point is that Kidworth gives you a mechanism for keeping it all organized and helping your child set and stick to short- and long-term financial goals. Talk about a gift that keeps on giving!
As a gift to one of you, I’m purchasing a $25 Kidworth credit to get one of your kids started toward a savings goal. Here’s how to win:
- To enter, simply leave a comment with a valid email address (in the email field, not in the body of the comment.)
- For up to 3 extra entries:
- Tweet about the contest, then leave an additional comment letting me know you did
- Share the contest on Facebook, then leave an additional comment letting me know you did
- Register a Kidworth portfolio, then leave an additional comment letting me know you did. Note: they’re running a great Facebook deal right now; the first 100 people to sign up will receive a $10 credit. Follow this link for details.
Contest will close at 1:00 PM EST on Saturday, December 3. Winner will be selected randomly using the “And The Winner Is” WordPress plugin and published on The Happiest Mom by Sunday, December 4.
All entries will automatically be included in this weekend’s drawing for a Motorola Droid Razr!
I’m working with Kidworth on a series of sponsored posts, but all words opinions – plus the $25 giveaway prize – are from me.
To welcome the holiday season, I’m giving gifts away for six days with a great grand prize drawn from all entries – a Droid Razr! Check out the intro post for more details, and Day 1′s post for a chance to win a $25 iTunes gift card.