Birthdays in our home are highly anticipated and always celebrated with friends, family and more fun than each of our children could imagine. Each one makes a gift list of toys and trinkets they’ve had their eye on lately, and thanks to amazing friends, aunts, uncles and grandparents our children end up with WAY too many gifts each year. And then there’s the cards. Each with warm, loving sentiments for the birthday boy and some contain a check, some cash or a gift card.saving-your-kids-birthday-money

Gift cards get spent pretty fast with our boys-they love to shop-but the cash and checks I tend to set aside for them. My husband and I think that it is important to let the kids enjoy their gifts and be able to be kids, but we also want to teach them about saving. The money that each of our kids receives for birthdays and holidays goes right into their Scholarshare account to go towards college.

The little bits we add into their accounts at each birthday and holiday are only enough to buy simple toys here and there that will get lost in the sea of other toys they received as gifts. Instead, we show the kids how their little bit each time they deposit grows by the next time they need to deposit. Our oldest loves to see how his money grows!

We’ve taught them to “Start Small” because every little bit they add counts towards  them reaching their goals. One of my sons wants to be a 4th grade teacher (he’s very specific). The money he saves from his birthdays and holidays along with the money we are adding into their Scholarshare account each month will go towards helping to pay for his education in hopes that he isn’t left with a mountain of debt to pay on a new teacher’s salary. We need great teachers and I want nothing in the way for him to be one of them!

Call me a mean mom for not giving the money straight to my kids now, but they have other ways to save up cash for their own use. We give a small allowance as long as chores are done and homework is finished each week. Sometimes dad comes home with extra change in his pockets-the kids divide it up and love to count it over and over. kids-saving-moneyEverytime Grandpa visits, the kids each magically have an extra dollar in their piggy banks. My kids are still able to learn to spend responsibly on a small scale all while learning to save and prepare for the future on a much larger scale in their Scholarshare account.

ScholarShare is a California 529 savings plan for everyone that can be opened by anyone. Grandparents want to help out your grandkids? This is the perfect gift! You can open one for your own children, Employers can open a ScholarShare account to help further your education or even open one for yourself for when you finally decide to jump back on THAT horse! The ScholarShare plans are easy to navigate but there’s plenty of help around if you need it. Your money grows over time, and each time you deposit, your investment grows that much more! When it comes time for college, you or your child will be able to withdraw from the account as needed to pay for school, supplies, and most education related purchases. Check out Scholarshare today to set up your own 529 accounts and get a jump start on paying for college!

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This post is sponsored by ScholarShare as part of Simply Real Moms ambassadorship.

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