When I was a kid, my parents taught my siblings and me the value of money by letting us earn it. We didn’t get an allowance; we earned money by doing household chores.

My parents put a list in the laundry room showing how much money we would earn for each chore we did. Dusting, taking out the trash, sweeping the carpet, mopping the floors, weeding the flower beds, picking up sticks—they were all on the list. Weeding the flower beds had the biggest payout. I now know why. It was the hardest job—and nobody wanted to do it. Except for me.

That was the summer I really wanted a purple watch with pink flowers. It was $14.97 at Kmart, and I finally had a way to purchase it. I just needed to weed the flower beds and do a couple of other chores, and it would be mine.

Let me set the scene. That summer was a hot one. On one of the hottest days while my family members were relaxing and splashing around in the pool, I took to the flower beds. With weeding tools and a bucket in my hand, I started weeding. I hadn’t realized just how many flower beds we had until that day.

My brother and sister laughed at me from the pool, and my parents kept asking if I needed some water. I powered through.

I finished all of the weeding, and my parents forked over the cash. The next day, we went to Kmart and I got the coveted watch.

Not only did this experience teach me about the value of money and hard work, but it also taught me that it’s not a bad idea to pay someone else to weed your flower beds.

My parents were onto something. Since that experience, I’ve realized that things rarely are just given to you. It’s important to have goals and to work toward them.

That’s where savings come into play. They taught me plenty about that, too! I thought I knew a lot until I read Jessica Holbrook’s feature on investments and retirement. Looks like I’ll be beefing up my retirement. Read the story for more tips on how to financially prepare yourself for the future.

Maybe you’re a little less traditional.

Alison Matas’ feature has unique ways people are saving money and reducing costs nowadays.

Whatever your money woes, we’ve got you covered this month. There are tons of money stories, starting on Page 36.

Until next month,
Kelsey Reinhart, editor

About The Author

Kelsey Reinhart

Kelsey Reinhart is the editor of About magazine. When she's not working, she's usually reading, running, knitting or spending time in the great outdoors.

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