discovery toys blog of billie elias
Tips for parents who play with their children or who want stay-at-home income.
Toys for special need, autism, gifted and typical kids.

August 25, 2009

Lemonade from Lemons

One of the most special things about being a stay-at-home mom is not having to miss any milestone your child achieves. This concept was hammered home to me in a blog post by Hill Robertson entitled, "Which is more important - job or lemonade stand?"

As I read Robertson's post, it reminded me of the summer day 7 years ago when my son asked if he could have a lemonade stand. We live around the corner from a landmarked office building where thousands of people work. There's a bank and a health club (with thirsty weightlifters and treadmillers) on the ground floor of the building as well. Even though it wasn't right outside our front door, it was the ultimate spot for us, and I used the occasion to explain the real estate broker's motto: "location, location, location."

Our pitch was "Fresh squeezed, ice cold lemonade!" Never one to miss an opportunity to teach some math, I explained to him how to calculate the ideal price. Together we decided how many lemons and how much sugar was required, and what those materials cost. We added the cost of the plastic cups. Then we measured our pitcher to see how many cups it held. We saw that 25 cents per cup would earn a small profit. When people learned that he had made the lemonade himself, by hand, from his own recipe, they gave him $1 and said, "keep the change." I enjoyed the comments his customers made: "smart kid," "enterprising young man." People were assuming this money was going into our college fund and they were throwing $5 and $10 bills into his cup. Periodically, I'd run home to refuel and to cache the money. Each outing, we increased the price because demand was so great. He learned the concepts of "supply and demand" and "what the market will bear." (Economics 101).

Today, I am proud to say, my son continues his entrepreneurial pursuits, and I attribute this to my being there to help with his first attempt at capitalism.

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