I was recently asked to write about what my mother has taught me about money. In my post I wrote about how my mother has served as a financial role model for me:
…my mother is wise with her money. She has taught me that there are few things better than having the security of a well-funded financial cushion. As a single woman, she has managed to save many thousands of dollars, which she guards with conservative care.
My mother has also taught me that spending money can be a good thing, however:
My mother has also taught me the importance of spending money on things you love, value and cherish- no more, no less. While she only has the most basic of wardrobes and drives a ten year old car, her house is filled with books and art and she goes out regularly with her friends and family for nice meals, followed by performances and plays and operas.
I am lucky enough to have another almost mother in my life, my stepmother. I don’t remember her not ever being with my father (my parents divorced when I was very young). My wicked stepmother (she signs her letters to me Your Wicked Stepmother) has also taught me important lessons about money and things.
For as long as I can remember, she’s worn the same kind of clothing, tailored trousers or khakis, plain colored tee-shirts, cardigan sweaters. Through this I’ve learned the importance of buying quality and caring for what you own: she has purses or scarves that are decades old but still immaculate.
She has also taught me about the value of education and knowledge. I was tucked into bed at night with stories from the Ilead, the Odyssey or Aesop’s Fables…along with fairy tales embellished by her imagination. She was not the only person who helped me fall in love with books, but her love of reading certainly contributed to mine. She still tells me about what she learned at university and the letters she sends me (and many others, I’m sure) are full of clippings from the NY Times, the New Yorker that she’s saved because she found them interesting.
Thank you to my mother and my Wicked Stepmother, for being there for me.
What has your mother taught you about money?