I must have been in 1st grade, although I'm not sure. It's the time when you start learning about money. Ditto's for homework with pictures of coins and dollars, my job was to add them up. I have a fuzzy memory of the first time I tried to purchase something. They made a big deal about a school store in my elementary school. This was different from the regular school store. This was a store that the 5th graders would be running for a week that the other grades would be able to visit. It was right before mother's day and it was marketed as a place to possibly find your beloved mother a gift.
I was excited! I negotiated with my own mother how much money I could possibly have so that I could buy her something. I think she gave me a dollar--like I said the memory is fuzzy. I remember a dollar because she made me put it in my coin purse. I get a little grin on my face when I think of my mom talking about a coin purse (and pencil cases, but that's another story for another day). My coin purse was little, pink and had a small zipper to keep the contents safe. I put my little coin purse in my empty purse and went to school. I'd seen my older sister take a purse to school. Finally I had my purse with my coin purse with a dollar for the store!
Our whole class had a scheduled time to visit the store. We went after lunch and had probably 10 minutes to "shop around." I was nervous, clutching my purse. I looked closely at the prices considering what I could afford. There was a mug that I wanted to get for my mother. It was too much money. At a small table I found some containers holding pens, erasers, pencils and other small items. Then I saw it. A glorious, tall, red, glittery/sparkly pen! It swooped around in loops at the top! The pen was less than the dollar I had. I looked at the 5th grade girl across the table and told her I'd like to get the pen. She told me it would be ___ what maybe 90 cents? I took out my coin purse. I remember looking at my dollar, hand shaking a little and saying out loud, "so, I give you this?" The 5th grader snatched up my dollar, gave me my dime and I was done. What a rush!!
I just purchased a car. My first--I want a new car--purchase! I negotiated the financing and everything. I had the same nervous energy of that day in first grade. Is this really going to work? So, I just give you this? Really?