"THE" Pink Elephant

Every night after dinner we ask the kids if they want to help us do dishes.  One washes the dishes at the sink and one clears the table and then we switch every other night.  They're actually getting pretty good at it and usually seem to enjoy doing it!  It's only a couple times that Caroline asks for a "fast" night and just lets Mommy and Daddy do it.  In exchange for them helping, they each receive a quarter.  They have piggy banks set up near the kitchen and every so often we count how much money is in there.  It started out that we would let the kids ride the merry-go-round at the zoo.  This is $2 and definitely fun for them to pay for themselves.  We then told Caroline that she didn't have to spend her money every time and could save it for something even better!!  She saw this pink elephant on a leash at the zoo gift shop and was determined to buy it!  She had to sit out several times while Cooper rode the merry-go-round and just watch in order to keep her money.  We wanted to keep the goal attainable, so instead of making her save the $16.99 in which it cost, we told her she needed $10 to buy it.  Well she was getting really close the last time we went to the zoo and while Daddy and Cooper rode the merry-go-round, Caroline and I went to check on "her" elephant.  Wouldn't you know… there were NO pink elephants to be found!!  She was crushed and pretty upset.  We told her that she didn't quite have enough money yet anyways, so next time there would probably be the perfect one for her.  Of course nothing else would work!

I dropped the idea, kind of googled other pink elephants but really had no luck finding much.  My amazing {and somewhat frustratingly focused} husband however, did not stop until he found this particular elephant!  He called the zoo and found out the manufacturer, called them and begged the wholesaler to just sell him 1 elephant and ship it to our house.  Yes, this was not super cheap and increased the price by about $20, but we decided it was worth it to teach her a lesson and not let her lose her enthusiasm for saving money!

So the morning we were planning on going to the zoo, we decided to take 2 cars.  We needed to renew our membership anyways, so Josh went early and after doing that, took our pink elephant to the gift shop.  The workers were happy to play along and said they only had 1 pink elephant left and Caroline could have it!!  She was pretty excited!
They even pretended to ring her up and had her check out with her bag full of quarters!
"Pinkie" went everywhere with us that day!

(This time Grami paid for the merry-go-round and let them keep their quarters.  Spoiled kids!)

What a great lesson and what a great dad!  We are now on our way to earning enough money to go and see Charlotte's Web at a local children's theater.  She's pretty determined!