You can spend time with your children without raiding your old 401k. If you have children or grandchildren, you can fill a baby carriage with the dough you’ll save using daddy (or mommy) dates. More important, you’ll get some priceless memories that you’ll never forget.
I was first introduced to the concept of “daddy dates” by my friend Nathan in Michigan. He explained that he takes each of his children out separately once each month. They go on inexpensive outings and just spend time together.
I’ve done this with my daughters (although not every month) and it’s been great. Recently my wife and I started using this concept with a little twist. As a result, we’ve saved some significant moolah.
My youngest turned 10 last month, and she really wanted to go to a theme park to celebrate. Under normal conditions, we all would go as a family or we wouldn’t go at all. But this time, due to calendar conflicts and financial considerations, my little one and I decided to go on our own.
We had a ball.
We had fewer disagreements about what ride to get in line for. We moved around quicker. We did more things. We saw far more shows. We had a far more memorable time because we were focused on each other.
Oh…and we spent 70% less money on admission, food and junk. Sweet! It’s a great model for my daughters. When their eventual groom asks them, “How much should a wedding cost?” my kids will be thinking about small sums. That makes Pop proud and happy.
Maybe it’s just a dynamic that we have in our family, but if I think about the most fun and memorable times I’ve spent with my kids, it was probably during one of these daddy dates. Of course I love when my entire family is together. But there is something to be said for going on trips and adventures with just one of the kids.
Most important, they really value the time they spend with just my wife or myself.
Have you taken advantage of “daddy (or mommy) dates”? Have you noticed that in some ways, it’s better than having the entire family there? Which memories are strongest in your mind: the times you spent with just one of your parents or the times you went on family trips with the whole gang? Which did you enjoy more?
Before we move on to your weekend reading options…I have some exciting news. I’d like to announce the Wealth Pilgrim Radio Show! Next Tuesday at 3 PM PST I’m kicking off the show with a very special interview. I’m going to be interviewing Bob Lottich from Christian Personal Finance. If you don’t know Bob, you’re in for a treat. He is a true entrepreneur. He left a very cushy corporate job and turned his passion for blogging into a very successful business. More important, his work is now a reflection of his values. Bob will discuss how he made the transition to business owner and how you might do the same. I hope you’ll join us.
Now, as promised, here are your weekend reading ideas:
Oblivious Investor explains why investing is different than just about any other human activity. I don’t agree with all of his conclusions but I do think the main point he makes is excellent.
Here’s a great discussion about how much your time is worth from Cash Money Life. This is a good one, especially if you are a business owner.
Moolanomy writes about the importance of an emergency fund and how to create one.
Money Ning writes about how not to worry about money – a very important discussion.
Five Cent Nickel talks about the benefits of gardening. I just can’t see myself out there doing this work. Am I just too lazy? After reading his article, I just might change my mind.
Generation X explains how to do a mid-year financial check up. Nice work. Comprehensive.
Here are some carnivals I participated in. I was honored to be chosen by the Best of Money Carnival and Top Personal Finance Posts as having one of the top ten posts for the week.
Money Under 30 – Lobster Roll Edition
Green Panda Treehouse Building Edition
The Writer’s Coin Carnival of Top Personal Finance Posts #6
Financial Highway Money Hacks Carnival
Festival of Frugality
All the best to you and your family for a lovely weekend.