Yesterday morning Monkey was having a leeeetle bit of trouble transitioning to school…he fell to his knees in the truck and his face crumpled. Tears were a heartbeat away… Thinking quickly (and desperately) I showed him the change I had in my pocket. He’s been really interested in money lately so I thought it might head off the meltdown before it got started and it worked. He grinned from ear to ear as he reached for the bounty (about $.60.) I closed my hand around the money and told him, “When you’re on the sidewalk you can have the coins.”
He quickly hopped out of the truck and we walked around the front of the truck to the sidewalk. He was fairly vibrating with excitement by this time and he was saying “OK! OK!” in a high-pitched voice…almost a squeak. He presented me with his outstretched palm and as I put the coins in his hand I told him, “You’re rich!”
He kept a very tight grip on the coins all the way into class. He was jogging along beside me saying, “I’m rich! I’m RICH!” and hopping a little bit for emphasis every time the word “rich” came out of his mouth. He was adorable! We checked with the teacher and she was OK with us leaving the money with him. We weren’t expecting him to bring the money home, we thought he’d share it or lose it but the teacher gave him a Ziploc baggie and the coins survived the day.
This morning, after he was dressed for school, he found the baggie of coins. He was taking them with him again, no questions asked. “Hmmm…if he has what he wants,” I thought, “how can I bribe him?” I suggested that he put the coins in his bank, that is what rich people do1, and I could give him MORE when we got into the truck.
I nearly broke my arm patting myself on the back when he ran happily to his room to make his deposit. What I didn’t think of was that I probably should have shared my plan because, as I turned the corner into his room, I saw Duhdee handing him MORE coins…because the whole thing is so darned cute. Curses, foiled again! Monkey came running back to me grinning from ear to ear…and really why shouldn’t he have been? He’d made his deposit, received one tribute already so his baggie was jingling nicely still and I’d promised him more. Hmmm…he’s shaping up nicely as a con artist!
We grabbed our coats and headed for the truck. After I had buckled his seat belt he held his little baggie out and grinned at me. I dropped in my addition. We were now ready to go.
Once at school, I opened my door and looked down to see three $1 bills on the ground. I picked them up and showed them to Duhdee, “It looks like someone dropped their lunch money. I’ll drop it in the office.” I closed my door, opened Monkey’s and was greeted with a baggie held out and open. He glanced at the bills in my hand, “Put in.”
What is going on here?? A week ago the kid had barely any interest in cash at all, he prefers plastic, and now he’s suddenly pulling a hold up on me? Sighing, I dropped the money in and told him, “But it’s not ours, I’m going to take it back.” He didn’t even acknowledge me. He ran to the doors of the school and when he stopped to wait for someone to open the door for him (they are hella heavy) I snagged the bills from his baggie to hand over to the school greeter. Not even a whimper!
We left him with his bag of loot. As we walked away, we heard the sound of coins hitting linoleum2…oh goody, an impromptu math lesson even 😉 It’s a good thing his teacher is such a good sport!