"Mama, what extra jobs can I do to earn some money?"
A seemingly simple question. But we've really made a point of not paying our children to help around the house. Because we all live together, we all work toward making our home wonderful (and, uhm, clean).
"I don't pay you to help, you know that. Why do you need money? Don't you have some in your bank?" A fair response, I thought.
"Well," Jazz replied, "I do have some, but not much. At Bible School today, Mrs. Tina explained that a group of teens are going to the Eastern Shore in a few weeks. You know, that trip that [Classic Rock] went on last year. He talked about seeing the children and wanting to help. Mrs. Tina says we can donate toys, books, crayons and stuff like that. I found some puzzles and toys we don't use anymore, but I wanted to buy crayons and coloring books. And socks, they need socks."
"So, can I do some extra jobs to earn the money to buy the stuff to donate." She's tenacious, this one.
Well, what parent says no to a child wanting to help? Not this one.
And so, with her brothers out of town and extra work to be done, Jazz pulled garbage cans on trash day (ours have to go down the street and around the corner), dusted baseboards (a task I usually save for children requiring Contemplative Reflection - i.e. punishment), vacuumed the upstairs (her brothers' rooms), and swept the back porch (for Daddy).
I gladly handed her the cash and drove her to the store. She picked out socks, coloring books (a Bible one, Mama!), small toys and Hot Wheels cars, and hard candy.
Then, I thought about my role as single parent this week. I've been in charge of planning and prepping meals (those who know me know I hate the planning part), as well as watering the gardens. I decided I'd earned a little extra money and I picked up some toys and coloring books as well. And, like a good Mama, I let little Irish Jig walk my bag to the donation bin the next morning.
Today's post title is from Go Make a Difference by Steve Angrisano and Tom Tomaszek
*** Classic Rock is planning to travel with our Senior Youth again this summer. The group of young people visits the migrant farm camps and puts on a simplified version of Bible School for the children. Last year, they also spent a day digging and sorting potatoes - a job CR described as hot, dirty, and unappreciated by anyone who shops in a grocery store. I unfortunately do not have access to pictures of last year's trip, but I saw one great shot of my son swinging a small child in the air just to make her smile and laugh. It's a life changing experience, for sure. And, his Spanish was so much better when he returned!