The Price of Children

**Sent
to me in an email by a fellow new parent**

The government recently calculated the cost of raising a child from birth to 18
and came up with $160,140 for a middle-income family. Talk about sticker shock!
That doesn’t even touch college tuition. But $160,140 isn’t so bad if you break
it down. It translates into:

$8,896.66 a year,
$741.38 a month, or
$171.08 a week.
That’s a mere $24.24 a day! Just over a dollar an hour.

Still, you might think the best financial advice is don’t have children if you
want to be "rich."
Actually, it is just the opposite. What do you get for your $160,140?
-Naming rights. First, middle, and last!
-Glimpses of God every day.
-Giggles under the covers every night.
-More love than your heart can hold.
-Butterfly kisses and Velcro hugs.
-Endless wonder over rocks, ants, clouds, and warm cookies.
-A hand to hold, usually covered with jelly or chocolate.
-A partner for blowing bubbles, flying kites, building sandcastles, and skipping
down the sidewalk in the pouring rain.
-Someone to laugh yourself silly with, no matter what the boss said or how your
stocks performed that day.

For $160,140, you never have to grow up. You get to:
-finger-paint
-carve pumpkins
-play hide-and-seek
-catch lightning bugs
-and never stop believing in Santa Claus.

You have an excuse to:
-keep reading the Adventures of Piglet and Pooh
-watching Saturday morning cartoons
-going to Disney movies
-and wishing on stars.

You get to frame rainbows, hearts, and flowers under refrigerator magnets and
collect spray painted noodle wreaths for Christmas, hand prints set in clay for
Mother’s Day, and cards with backward letters for Father’s Day.
For $160,140, there is no greater bang for your buck.

You get to be a hero just for:
-retrieving a Frisbee off the garage roof
-taking the training wheels off a bike
-removing a splinter
-filling a wading pool
-coaxing a wad of gum out of bangs
-and coaching a baseball team that never wins but always gets treated to ice
cream regardless.

You get a front row seat to history to witness the:
-first step
-first word
-first bra
-first date
-and first time behind the wheel.

You get to be immortal. You get another branch added to your family tree, and
if you’re lucky, a long list of limbs in your obituary called grandchildren and
great grandchildren. You get an education in psychology, nursing, criminal
justice, communications, and human sexuality that no college can match. In the
eyes of a child, you rank right under God.

You have all the power to
-heal a boo-boo
-scare away the monsters under the bed
-patch a broken heart
-police a slumber party
-ground them forever
-and love them without limits.

So. . . one day they, like you, will love without counting the cost. That is
quite a deal for the price!
Love & enjoy your children & grandchildren! Each new day brings special
things, they’re easy to spot if you will only open your eyes.

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