Gifts Worth 10x Their Price

You know what's coming up, of course.  But perhaps you haven't thought about shopping yet.   Allow us to remind you (sorry!):

Online.  Offline.  Lists.    Gifts.     Shipping.     Traffic.     Malls.     Return policies.      Receipts.    WHAT DO THEY WANT?

But that's the WRONG question.

What does your Almost Grown Child NEED?

You might also be thinking that, wow, aren't we just a few weeks early talking about this?  If you are looking for something meaningful, that "pay it forward" type of gift, then no, we aren't too early.  

So, before Cyber Monday, Black Friday, Gray Thursday and all those crazy monikers happen?  Don't get lost in that shuffle.  Give gifts that have meaning beyond price.  Whether you are a grandparent or parent with a teen in your life,  you can answer this age old question:

 "All I Want for Christmas"  is to give something worth far more than the price tag a regular item may hold.   The something that teaches, enchants, and sets we adults up for some great moments with our offspring. 

(Note:  JellyGeneration is not affiliated nor compensated for any website, company, or product we list below.  These are suggestions on where to start your gift process – not specific recommendations)

#1   Why not give a gift of $xx and together you invest in a mutual fund? 

Have fun learning which to pick, how to track it, how to watch it grow, and how to see where daily politics/economic conditions affect the investment world, and even when to sell.   

Not up to speed on how to invest in one?  A good place to start your learning process is here:

Part of the “priceless” value of doing this with your child or parent is that you venture into this together.  Ask the advice of others on what to look for and where to begin. Our biggest caveat is, however, never invest more than you are willing to lose.  But, money management lessons learned along the way?  Priceless.

Hint:  if you don't want to use actual money, you can still do this together just "pretending" to purchase and see what happens to your investment.  

#2. Why not give $xx to start a part-time business. 

The $ amount doesn’t have to be much.  You might provide seed money for flyers, gardening tools, gas, or camera accessories.  Help them set an easy business plan and target goals.  The lessons learned along the way?  The basics on marketing, income and expenses. Truly priceless. 

#3. Donate time on a philanthropy that you do together. 

The need is great, the volunteers are few.   From Samaritan’sPurseto Make a Wishto Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, any time given to help others always comes back many times to the giver.    One of our favorite philanthropies to work with is Special Olympics.   We’ve had the most wonderful time cheering the participants on as they compete for their Olympic ribbon.  Time with my kids doing this?  Priceless. 

#4. How about having a Father-Son Day or a Father-Daughter Day (or Mom instead of Dad).

Commit to a full day dedicated to something that you both will enjoy.  Could that be fishing?  Hiking? Heading to Six Flags?  Creating a backyard garden?  Whatever it is, take your camera, and then create a photo book of memories.  Do this as an every year project and get a photo library of memories.  Yes, priceless.  (bonus, this becomes part of your college admittance portfolio).

#5. Create a spending plan with your child after listening to their wishes and dreams. 

This particular one is near and dear to our JellyGeneration heart.  This time of year gives such a wonderful opportunity to teach delayed gratification, goal setting, and more.

Want more on how to do this?  Click here: Holiday Spending - Who is the Boss?

#6: Start a “matching” savings plan.

Want to encourage your “mini-you” to save?  Then offer to match what they save.   Your offer doesn’t have to be one to one.  It can be whatever you are comfortable with. In fact, you could stair-step your offer.  For the first $100 they save, you offer 25% matching.  For the next $200 they save, you match at 50%.  The matching rate increases the more they save.  You could then teach the concept for a 401K, and how some businesses have a 401K “matching” program. 

#7.  Pay them for creating a good habit/trait.

This one worked well at our house.  We offered $100 to my daughter if she didn’t consume a soft drink for an entire year.  Guess what? She did it.  We offered her $200 if she did it for an additional year. Yes, she got her $200.   The third year?  Well, being frugal parents, we didn’t go to $300, but we kept the offer at $200. 

The end result?  She doesn’t drink soft drinks at all as she now doesn’t like the taste. Is there a good trait you want to encourage at your house?  This might be the perfect solution. 

#8.  Create a Ticket Book.

Do you remember when your child created a gift ticket book at school, or thru organizations they were involved in?  Generally the ticket book had tickets you would "cash in" during the year:  one "free hug", one "I'll make dinner tonight", one "I'll wash your car" type of thing?  

Why not reverse the process.  Make a ticket book for your kids.  In fact, you can still use the "free hug", "wash car" ideas and expand them:  two tickets to see your "favorite movie", one "dinner out" at your favorite restaurant and so on.   Your benefit?  Time with them and a chance to talk to them out of the normal hectic environment we often find ourselves in.  


We would love to hear your ideas on this topic too.  In an ever materialistic society, giving a gift that is measured in more than money is a worthy endeavor.  Have you done any of these in your family?   If you are willing to share your ideas, please put them in the comment section.  You can help others.

So now you see why we published this now.  Perhaps there is a bit of planning involved but oh my, the payoffs are in the double-digits in our opinion.  As Benjamin Franklin said:

An investment in knowledge pays the best interest.

 Have a great rest of your week and as we always say . . . 

You CAN Have Success in the Middle of it ALL !


Pam and Holly
JellyGeneration Team 
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Who Is JellyGeneration?

Pam Hardison, MBA, BBA in Finance and Business Education, has created and co-owned a national mail order catalog which at one point was the 21st fastest growing customerbase in the nation.  As a mom of two college-post college daughters, considers it a privilege and to meet other students and parents along the same road.   After teaching high school and college students for years, her commitment to helping them with topics most schools can't cover is the light that drives her.  

Holly Powers, Attorney-At-Law (Jameson & Powers, P.C.) has been actively practicing law since 1985 and is a shareholder with the law firm of Jameson & Powers, P.C.  The firm specializes in transactional law, health care law, and general business law.  Holly has taught students precepts concerning the legal world for over 10 years.  With 4 children, she understands what teens need to know and has a passion to help others faced with teens and aging parents.  

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