Chapter Excerpt

Spend More Time and Less Money Congratulations on jumping on board as we help you create a happier, less harried life with your family. Our goal is for you to discover more joy and meaning in each day, spending time with your kids in ways that really matter.As moms, we know that when the focus is on spending time together, rather than money, the creative juices really start to flow. It's easy to spend money on our kids by stockpiling toys, gadgets, and the latest gizmo. But finding ways to enjoy being together without spending increases joy.Who knew there were so many cash-free ways for kids to learn, grow, socialize, appreciate good food, enjoy technology, and become more independent and resilient? This book celebrates our philosophy, one that's been confirmed by happy moms (and kids) who have used our approach. It's rooted in this simple formula: spend twice as much time and half as much money.The result is certainly money saved, but even more important, we raise children who know the value of a dollar and become more productive members of their families and communities. When special memories are made, not purchased, the entire family wins. There is simply no wiser investment in your children than time, your most precious commodity. The Big Payoff What's the return on this investment? Think happy mom, happy child, happy childhood. Smart, self-reliant kids who, before you know it, grow into self-reliant adults. Exposed to this way of thinking, children learn that, regardless of the circumstances they are faced with in life, they can be independent and see themselves as the solution. Recession? Job loss? They'll rise to any challenge without relying on money to experience the good stuff in life.It's all about a new parenting attitude. Your pocketbook is not your boss. Regardless of income, job status, or the balance in your savings account, you can be the master of your money. This attitude will empower you to adopt and develop your own cost-free routines for your family. By teaching children that the lasting value is in the time we spend, not the money, we are teaching skills for a lifetime.After all, as parents, we are our children's first and most important teachers. And the biggest lesson of all is that it's a better world when we can enjoy it on our own terms, less influenced by what's 'spendy or trendy' and more by what really matters, like family, community, connection, and personal growth. We know you can make this change, and we're confident you're going to enjoy the ride. Welcome to a new and satisfying way of enjoying family time. Keep It Simple A more authentic, easygoing approach to life with kids starts with the universal wisdom that it's all about keeping it simple. It's about simple things you can do with your children to lighten the financial load while holding onto your priorities. We complicate things by thinking we need to have the latest and greatest thing. And whether you're a stay-at-home parent or out

Excerpted from Eat, Nap, Play: How to Get Even More Out of Your Child's Day for Less by Robyn Freedman Spizman, Evelyn Sacks
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