Like father, like daughter…
Recently, my 7-year-old daughter started asking me some questions about my blog. She wanted to know what I write about and why I do it.
I’m very deliberate in making sure that I don’t treat her like a kid when she’s interested in answers to something. I have a couple reasons for this:
1) I want to ensure she’s never afraid to ask questions. And so far, that’s always been effective. She never feels like she can’t check with us on something she’s unsure of. She asks a lot of questions… the right questions.
I like that a lot.
If you think you know everything, you won’t learn. If you’re not afraid to ask questions, though, you have an opportunity to both learn and grow.
I try to be careful in not pushing her in any direction. My goal is to just give her the facts and let her determine the destination from there.
2) Kids get treated like kids all too often. If you don’t answer their questions sufficiently or brush them off, they don’t have an opportunity to really think.
Having my daughter understand something she’s curious about is important to me.
I enjoy watching the wheels turn as she processes whatever topic we’re talking about.
And I’ll break it down for her until we get to the point that she gets it. She’s definitely not afraid to speak up and put the brakes on a discussion… and then we just move on to something else.
Back to the blog…
My daughter already knew that I spent time every week working on a post. In fact, this is always a sticking point as my blog takes time away from her. She loves to roll her eyes when Mrs. R2R or I tell her that I need to work on a post.
However, she didn’t know much more about what this site is all about. So I spent a few minutes explaining what I do.
Personal finance has become something I really enjoy and this gives me a great opportunity to help others learn from my successes as well as my mistakes.
She liked to hear that.
Then when I told her that I hope this site continues to grow in both followers and income over the years, she liked it even more. Like father, like daughter!
You might already know that I talk to her openly about money and try to help her understand some of the basics of real estate and starting a business. In my post, Another Reason Why Working for Yourself is a Smart Idea…, I talked about how she’s been expanding her lemonade stand into slightly bigger operations.
I’ve also mentioned in Showing Kids the Path to Financial Freedom how I like to discuss our plans for financial freedom and the path we’re taking to get there.
So, as we continued to talk, I told her that she’s welcome to write a post for me to publish.
That brought a smile to her face and she headed right over to her laptop (a small notebook I got for free from work!).
The “Like Father, Like Daughter” post…
She quickly stopped what she was doing, looked up, and said, “What should I write about?”
“It’s up to you… I usually write about different money ideas or what we’re doing to be able to retire earlier, but you can choose whatever topic you want.”
I watched the cogs start turning and the grin on her face let me know she had a good idea.
Later, she asked me how long my posts are and when I showed her, her jaw dropped. She was relieved when I told her that hers didn’t have to be that long.
Now, I’ll preface this by saying that she requested that the font size be precise to what she had written as well. It was pretty large on her computer, which made it look a lot longer than it was.
Shh, don’t tell her that I brought it down in font size to make it easier to read. But I might start doing that on my posts down the line to make them appear lengthier as well!
I was also instructed to leave the font color as pink like she had used. So without further ado, here’s my daughter’s post…
MY PLAN !!!!!!!!!!!!!
Hey my name is [REDACTED BY DAD] and you may know me because my dad talks about me A LOT. I am 7 years old.
Anyway, when I grow up I will buy a big duplex. Why? One: more money. Two: daddy
And get lots and lots of money and become a millionair. I will sell my paintings on line. Get more money and retire early and that’s my plan!
Um, I think I talk out loud a little too much. If this isn’t a “like father, like daughter” moment, I don’t know what is!!
Ok, it’s not the longest post you’ve ever read, but it’s a start.
I don’t want to over-analyze this handful of sentences, but judging by what she’s written, a couple things jump out at me…
1) Apparently, she’s listening when I talk – scary, right?!
It’s definitely a satisfying feeling to know that she’s paying attention to what I say. I don’t have all the answers, but I know I wasted a lot of time in my life following the standard “brainwashing” we’re taught.
Thinking you need to go to school, get a job, work for decades, and then hopefully have enough money to retire is good for some, but it’s not the only path.
I won’t make my daughter do anything – she’s too smart for that and it would only backfire anyway. However, I want her to know all her options and the risk/reward of the different paths.
For instance, starting a business can be a lot of work up front, but can present great rewards down the line. Or real estate is a fantastic path to wealth and can be a great hedge or alternative to the stock market.
These are just a couple of the things I wish I learned early on, so I’m making sure my daughter has a grasp on them earlier rather than later.
2) She’s already thinking about making money doing something she enjoys.
The idea of her selling her artwork online is something I haven’t heard before. She loves to draw and paint, which is cool because I’ve always had a knack for that as well (I was a Studio Art major for the first couple of years of college).
However, she’s still too young to know if that’s what she’ll want to do when she’s older.
Regardless, if she can figure out a way to make money doing what she loves, she won’t work a day in her life. I hope she pulls it off!
She definitely understands how important FIRE is to me. Apparently, some of my excitement has rubbed off on her. Whether or not she wants to retire early is something she’ll figure out over time, but I like that she’s got the wheels turning.
Anyway, I know a “like father, like daughter” post is something a little different from my usual stuff, but I hope you enjoyed it anyway. I love this kid to pieces and enjoy seeing her mind continue to grow every day.
Do you have kids that are following in your footsteps? Do you like watching the light bulbs turning on when they start figuring things out?
Thanks for reading!!
39 thoughts on “Like Father, Like Daughter…”
It may be because I have two children at home that are not quite ready to talk about retirement but I found this post absolutely beautiful. I love the parenting philosophies you shared and the proof that your daughter is learning about money at such a young age. Please let her know I’ll read anything you let her post here!
Thanks so much, Jason! I’ll be sure to let her know you said that!
I love this! We also try to “talk normally” to our son. He is only 2.5 and obviously we have to explain differently, but we try not to “baby talk” too much and hope to have real, honest discussions with him as he grows.
Your daughter is one smart girl 🙂 I think conversations like this early on can radically shape the lives of the next generation and open doors that would otherwise be unknown. Keep letting us know how you communicate with your daughter… we are taking notes for the time we will have similiar conversations with our son!!!
Sounds like we’re running things pretty similarly, Mrs. Adventure Rich. It becomes a balance of giving useful information without giving too much info (they get bored quickly!). However, she says a lot of things on her own that make me feel she’s pointed in the right direction. I’m guessing you’ll see the same with your son.
I can’t wait to see a picture of the mason jar of change with “Duplex fund” written on a piece of masking tape.
Haha, now that’s funny stuff! I wish I had thought of that – I would have included a photo like that in the post! 🙂
What a cute plan:) Maybe I should get my kids to write a post too…but not as cute when they are older! I think I shared too much with my kids about my landlord stories and they can’t wait until I get rid of them. I hope they change their mind, it is such a great investment for young people. Great Post.
For sure! I wish I had house-hacked and started when I was younger, but I’m glad I got into it regardless. I’ve always used a property manager so I haven’t had too many fun landlord stories, but I can only imagine the kids thinking “no way!” after hearing about some of the fun! 🙂
*get rid of the properties of course…not my kids:)
Haha, didn’t even notice how that could have been read differently in your other comment… that’s funny!
The World’s Youngest Personal Finance Blogger!! I Love This!! Good for you for treating your daughter as an adult. GREAT for you for letting her write her first post! Next, you need to help her start her own blog. I’m thinking, “ImGoingToBeAMillionair”, I wonder if that URL is still available?
Perfect way to enter the holidays. Now, tell your daughter she has to get online and respond to all of the comments her post is generating!
Whoa, whoa, whoa, Fritz – let’s not jump the gun. I don’t need that kind of competition out there. Maybe the smarter move is for me to bring her on-board here to do all the work and then cut her a sliver of any advertising dollars that come in.
Don’t tell her I even said something like that or she’ll put coal in my stocking. 😉
And to think I believed you really loved her….
Haha, it’s not even a question – more than life itself!
Wow, your daughter is great with writing and composition. Our kid is almost 7 and he’s nowhere near that level. Nice job!
I guess I’ll have to get ready to answer the same question here too.
Thanks, Joe – considering the inspiration you’ve given me (a guy who doesn’t even really know you), I can pretty much bet that your son’s going to be raised to be FIRE by his 20’s! 🙂
Happy holidays to you as well!
A very poignant post. It sounds like you are establishing a great relationship with your daughter, and it must be rewarding to feel like your financial goals are hitting home with her. I think it’s wonderful that you included her passage in this post and I hope it gives her a sense of pride in her accomplishment and of inclusion in your blogging activities. Nicely done!
Sounds like she has a good head on her shoulders (like her Dad)! I enjoyed her post and yours.
Thanks, Lake Girl – much appreciated!
This is a wonderful post!
I come from a family where finances weren’t discussed, so I had to eventually learn it all on my own after college. By being open and honest to your daughter’s questions, I can already tell she is going to be way ahead of the game! It is truly amazing the amount of information young children can process and analyze. I don’t have children yet, but I am definitely going to be as open and up front about the world when they come to ask me about certain things.
Thanks, Sean – it sounds like we were pretty similar on learning the financial side of things on our own after college. Puts you and I behind the eight ball a little bit to start with, but actually deciding to figure it out takes care of that problem.
The good news is that kids are smarter than we usually give them credit for. Talking to them is part of the way to do it, but the other half is leading them by example. They’ll figure it out from there. 🙂
Our little one is nearing 3 now and I’ve tried to keep in mind that ze is a little sponge and hears everything we say. Even if ze doesn’t understand it at the time, the little cogs are still turning on them over nights and weeks because something we said will pop out of zir mouth at some random time months later! I hope that we are able to practice the same patience that you do in answering your daughter’s questions 🙂
They really are like sponges, aren’t they?! Has ze repeated anything yet to just make your jaw drop… because they will and it’ll take everything you have not to laugh! 🙂
YES. And sometimes ze comes back with things that ze heard months before when we didn’t think ze was listening. OOPS! 😀
I love talking to my kids about money. Right now I let them lead the conversations, but it’s always a great and fun time. My biggest hope is that we’re teaching by example and are making positive lessons in doing so.
Love it, Money Beagle – it can be both entertaining and educational letting kids lead the conversation!
My kids are all in their 20’s and it’s really heartening when I see them acting upon strategies and advice I’ve ‘casually’ dropped into conversations over the years. They can see how hard we struggled during the early years and how focused I am nowadays about getting my financial ducks in a row to retire early and they clearly want to avoid the same rookie mistakes I made back in the day.
The old saying of “monkey see; monkey do” is pretty apt when you look at parenting.
That must be wonderful to see that in their lives, Frogdancer! Sometimes a struggle in earlier times can make a person stronger than they would be otherwise. As scary as it might be for my daughter to have to grow up to be like me 🙂 I hope I can provide a similar inspiration like you.
impressive for a 7-year old! I think she will be a FIRE role model for her generation in the future. It’s great that you are involving your kid in these “adult” conversations about money so early. I am starting to do the same with my 11-year old. Right now, he is up to the stage where he knows compound interest is where it’s at – always aim for compound interest and not “simple interest” is what he knows.
Haha, is that scary that your comment got me excited to talk to my daughter about compound interest?! 🙂 That’s fantastic that he’s learning about that at 11 – he’ll probably be FIRE right out of college!!
This is so awesome! A future Rockstar right there. I couldn’t help wondering if she was buying the duplex so you could live in the other half or what? 😉 Now please don’t let her shave her hair…
I kind of like that idea… I can keep an eye on her and make sure no boys ever visit!
No need to worry about her hair… I think her look of disgust seeing my Mohawk was enough to tell me she’s scarred for life! 🙂
Beautiful! Perfect example of second generation fire!
Haha, that’s like a compliment to old guys like me! She’s more like third generation FIRE! 😉
Please tell your daughter that her post was my favorite part of this article. LOVE it! What a great father lettering her participate and educating her now. Your love for her shines through and it is beautiful.
To answer your last question, no kids. They just never happened. I’m OK with that. I love my life. 🙂
I’ll pass that along to her. She’s a great kid – of course, who doesn’t say that about their kids?! 🙂
Oh my goodness, your daughter is the COOLEST! They are like little sponges at that age. I remember teaching my niece something and shortly thereafter I heard her teaching the same thing to a little friend. I thought I’d better always be intentional about what I teach them!
Yesss on encouraging her to find a way to make money doing something she loves!
She is definitely a cool kid, but I’m sure she gets that from me because, well, you know – I’m pretty awesome. 😉
Kids can definitely take things you say as gospel. Sometimes that’s a good things and some times, not so much!