What Was Your First Money Memory? Part 1

Seven leaders from the personal finance and financial planning community share their first money memories.

It is fascinating to discover how each describes and frames the memory. Take a close look at the words and phrases they use to describe their experiences. Many relate to wants, work, parents and role modeling of behaviors. All relate to specific feelings, including developing a certain sense of independence, confidence and competence. Here are some of the descriptions.

…Making my own money…

…My dad had 3 jobs…

…I was paid for work…

…buying candy bars…

…I wanted more of it to buy things…

…I earned my first paycheck…

…my parents bought me a gray cash box (for saving)…

What was your first money memory?

CONTACT US to share your first money memory. We will feature you, your memory and story in part 2 or 3 of the series.

We love to champion financial literacy education.

We believe sharing the personal experiences of leaders like yourself is one outstanding strategy to do it. It allows for us to learn from each other. It provides us more insight into what is truly memorable, that lasts, that “sticks” inside our heads and hearts. And whether we realize it as children or not, it is these experiences, that help shape our attitudes, feelings, thinking, habits and relationship with money.

Our aim is to help us all advance our knowledge, commitment, and efficacy managing money. Sammy Rabbit wants everyone to have more opportunity, encouragement and motivation to immediately begin taking steps on the road to greater financial stability, security and freedom. Your stories and knowledge help make that happen!

Enjoy. Share. Contribute. Thank you!

Sheryl Garrett

CFP®, Founder, Garrett Planning Network | Eureka, Arkansas

Some of my earliest memories about making my own money were when I was around seven or eight years old. If there was something that I wanted, I’d “negotiate” with my parents to obtain support and ideas or suggestions on ways to earn the money I needed to purchase the item or experience I wanted.  As most young children, I had a very short-term goal… every time.  I need to raise $27 to buy a skateboard!  I did everything from washing windows, polishing shoes, giving backrubs, to selling Christmas cards to raise my $27. As I grew, so did the ambitions, and the corresponding finances needed.  I’m so grateful that I started learning these lessons very young.

Read Sheryl Garrett’s Childhood Money Memories Interview!

See Garrett Planning’s Kids and Money web page!

Ray Hyson

Personal Financial Planning, CRPC® | Blue Springs, Missouri

My first money memory happened very early, somewhere around 5-yrs old. My dad had 3 kids in college…and me. He also had 3 jobs; as a mechanic at the post office, a taxi driver, and occasionally was a vendor (not sure what the correct term is) at either the pro baseball or pro football team’s stadium. He had to do that because the government told him he made too much money for assistance. In addition, he and my mom decided they didn’t want me to go to the public schools in the area, so they also decided to pay for me to attend Catholic school…from K-12.

I was taught if you want something bad enough, you need to be willing to work for it.

What a lesson to learn so early in life! (BTW, all us kids have college degrees).

Amy Irvine

CFP®, Owner Rooted Planning Group | Jasper, New York

I remember the first time I was paid for work – babysitting.  I was extremely excited because I could use some of this money to buy the “cool clothes” that we normally couldn’t afford.

Read Amy Irivne’s Childhood Money Memories Interview!

See Rooted Planning’s Group Kids and Money web page!

J.J. Wenrich | CFP®, Wealth Manager and Author of Teaching Kids to Buy Stocks: Stories and Lessons for Grown Ups | LPL Financial | San Clemente, California

My first memory was buying two candy bars at the “general store” in the rural Kansas town where I grew up (population 100). The store keeper said “that will be 60 cents young man”. I threw some change on the counter, he asked for a little more, then I threw some more change up there… He gave me some back. That’s when I realized that I would need at least 30 cents to get anything good. That event has been my baseline for “candy bar inflation” since then.

Jamie Bosse

CFP®, RFC, Financial Planner | Investment News 40 Under 40 | Author | Financial Educator at Aspyre Wealth Partners

I remember being really confused about money. I felt a negative association with it, but I also wanted more of it to buy the things I desired. Dr. Martin boots were all the rage when I was in middle school and I wanted a pair desperately! They cost somewhere in the neighborhood of $100 a pair, which might as well have been a million! They seemed so expensive and out of reach. I decided to figure out how to earn some money to buy a pair. I put together a babysitting ad to hand out to people in the neighborhood and families with young kids at our church As a result, I ended up working for several families and finally earned enough for those coveted shoes.

Read Jamie Bosse’s Childhood Money Memories Interview!

Tan Phan

MSFP, CFP® | Tan Wealth Management | San Francisco, California

I earned my first paycheck from an after-school program when I was in Oakland Technical High School. The after-school program taught high school students practical knowledge, such as how to handle a bank account, what you should do to increase your odds for college acceptance, how you should dress for a job interview, etc. I purchased my first car with the money I saved from the after-school program and with the help of my mother. I continued to work part-time and was able to pay my mother back in a few years.

Read Tan Phan’s Childhood Money Memories Interview!

See Tan Wealth Management’s Kids and Money web page!

Devin Banerjee

CFA | Sr. Financial Services Editor, LinkedIn News | San Francisco, California

My parents bought me a gray cash box with a lock and key when I was probably 6 or 7. Sometimes they would give me the change from a gas station or store purchase when we were together and I’d add it to the box, which I kept under my bed. Every week, I opened the box to count the money, update my ledger (a sheet of printer paper), and organize the coins with roll wrappers. I kept money in that box for about a decade. Every now and then, the problem was finding the key!

Read Devin Banerjee’s Childhood Money Memories Interview!

Sammy Rabbit loves championing and raising awareness on the importance of early age, youth and family financial literacy education.

One of his favorite methods to raise awareness is to share the stories of people and enterprises who want to make a difference in the lives of others!

IF you would like to be featured in a Sammy Rabbit blog, his Childhood Money Memories Interview series, a Sammy Spotlight, be a Sammy Guest Blogger, contact us.

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