Growing Up Ivy - Part 2
I remember getting really cocky because I had managed to save up even more money than I needed for my Chrissy doll. So feeling generous I started giving money away. Some to my little brother, and then even to some company that mom and dad had over. I just walked up and handed them some change. They said, "Oh, keep your money, we don't want your money!" I remember feeling very proud and insisting that they keep it because I had "more than enough!"
Then came the day when we went to the dime store. Mom and dad let me go to the toy section by myself while the rest of the family looked in different departments. This is my first memory of not having to be right by my parents' sides at the store. I walked Chrissy up to the counter and tried to pay for her, but did not have enough money. I was mortified. I had felt so mature, and wonderful for saving so much money. All that change carefully counted, and spread out all over the counter and the girl told me it wasn't enough. At first I just stood there dumbstruck, and finally got around to pointing to the price tag. That is when I got my first lesson about sales tax. And possibly (though I never asked) why my family decided I could be allowed to make the purchase on my own. A lesson sticks a little better when there's a little bit of worry and embarrassment to go along with it. I frantically searched for my dad who bailed me out with some change. He did ask me, though why I was needing money as he'd seen me before giving some away.
I'd like to say that I learned a valuable lesson about money... well, I did. But applying that lesson is a different story.
*Here is an alternate ending to the story for Old Hoss's sake:
My parents had planned this whole event of letting me make my purchase alone. I had assumed they wanted me to feel more "grown up", but instead it was a plot to ditch me. At 8 p.m. when the store was closing and my family was still nowhere to be found, I left the store empty handed, and walked the 20 miles back to base through the snow. Only to find out that the family had moved. It took me quite awhile, but I caught up to them eventually in South Dakota. Boy were they surprised to see me on their doorstep!