Houselife (05/10/2017): Just got back from a weekend spent with my husband’s cousins.  He and I drove the 8-hr trip (one way).  Call me crazy, but I love driving.  I love being on the road like that.  I love playing CDs over and over again and singing along, diving into an audio book, discussing silly “date-night” questions with  my husband, diving into deep political, psychological, or faith conversations.

We talked a while about his cousins—his aunt and uncle are rich af and we talked about how we might raise our kids the same or differently.  I grew up lower middle class, definitely not the kid with Tory Birch sunglasses and Michael Kohrs purses (like his cousin had).  However, his cousins were incredibly sweet, generous, sociable, and faithful.  I had so much fun hanging out with them. 

My husband’s aunt and uncle have definitely hit on something that you don’t expect: raising (mostly) unspoiled kids in the midst of having so much.  I wish I could pick out what the secret was.  Although my children won’t wear designer brands, they will still be so privileged and blessed in so many ways—and I want them to never take that for granted.

SL Response: A lot of people need this mindstate when raising kids—privileged and blessed in so many ways.  Idk if it’s cuz I’m black and I hang with blacks but I notice we have a need to rank ourselves by material wealth.  We are so drawn into designer clothes that we go broke or to jail to keep up with the “Jones’s” including myself. 

I love to be fresh and I would want my kids to be as well and I’m far from rich.  But never do I want my kids spoiled cuz I know the effect that can have growin up for them.  But I still want them fresh.

HW Respons: That’s such an interesting insight.  To be honest, I do like having “fresh” (name brand?) things too.  I wear Sperrys, have a Kate Spade purse, a Burberry wallet.  So I definitely can’t be down on anyone for that because I’m the exact same way.  My pre-teen brother-in-law is OBSESSED with all the athletic brands right now which is driving everyone CRAZY…but I can’t complain because I just got a new Vineyard Vines dress.  I guess I can appreciate  the desire to have nice things, that it means something.

But I don’t know if I’d put my kids in that stuff.  One reason being kids grow out of clothes so freaking fast.  I taught a third grader who wore Jordans and they fit her for about 5-6 months.  All that money for that short of time!! Another reason is that when I was growing up 100% of my clothing came from thrift stores.  Seriously!  If I got new clothes I paid for it or it was a really neat Christmas gift.  This taught me how to be extremely smart with my money, to prioritize what I wanted and to work for it.  I want to give my kids that.