As a personal finance blogger, I tend to think about money a fair amount. It’s safe to say that those of us who write about money probably think about it more than the rest of the population would, on average.
Of course, sometimes we need to disengage from any and all thoughts about money, and simply enjoy certain aspect of our lives just for the sake of enjoyment itself. At times, it takes a certain event to get us thinking along those lines.
I got to thinking about one of those moments recently. The event occurred months ago at my daughter’s elementary school. Basically, they had a program in the classroom where one day a week – if there were volunteers – a parent would come in and read a story to the class. The parent would be there for maybe 20 to 30 minutes, then leave. The catch was that the kids didn’t know who would be coming in to read. This person would be referred to as the week’s “Mystery Reader”.
So, I signed up to do this, and took a half day off work to make it happen. It was important to me, and something that I felt would bring such a great surprise to my daughter while giving her memories of the day that Daddy showed up at school and read to the class. I know that if that had ever happened when I was a kid (it didn’t), I would never forget it.
Anyway, on my designated day, I showed up and checked in at the main office. I felt like a little kid at the principal’s office, because that’s basically where I was! Like going back in time, and the building is from that era as it is, so it felt like it. Anyway, once I signed in, I was sent down to the classroom.
I subsequently knocked on the door, at the time the teacher was expecting me. The teacher then told the class that the Mystery Reader had arrived, and that they had to cover their eyes (and maybe have heads down too). So, I walked in, and was directed by the teacher to the front of the class toward a chair, where I’d sit down and read a book that she gave me. Then, once I was situated, she told the kids that they could open their eyes.
The look on my daughter’s face was priceless. She seemed so surprised and so excited to see me there as the Mystery Reader!
When a kid’s parent is the Mystery Reader, they get to go to the front and sit next to the parent while he or she reads. So, with her next to me, I read the story to the class! They enjoyed it, so the teacher asked me if I’d read another short story and I did. Then, the class was allowed to raise their hands and ask questions. Three questions from the group were allowed, and my daughter was allowed to call on those who raised their hands. It was a fun experience, for myself and for her too!
And guess what? I spent no money on it whatsoever. Oh sure, I guess you could monetize that 1/2 day, but you know what I mean. There were no direct expenses on my part for that day at all. Zero. I just showed up and read to her class.
Even better: the amount of enjoyment she and I got from it was so worth it. A true memory was made, for parent and child. All for free.
Sometimes, the finer things in life are truly free! We just have to embrace those moments.
My Questions for You
Do you ever have instances that remind you about how some things are priceless and money can’t buy happiness?
Do you have any such memories from childhood?