The other day I heard one of my children say she wished she had a money tree. I immediately said, "Don't you mean you wish you had a giving tree?" (Thank you author Shel Silverstein for inspiring my response.)
Judging by the puzzled look on my seven-year-old's face, she was trying to understand the difference. I explained that a giving tree would be better than a money tree so she could help others.
We put the plan into action this past weekend at our garage sale. While we tried to get rid of an overabundance of kid stuff, we also held a bake sale ... my kind of bake sale where you don't bake and you buy the goods from the grocery store! My kids handed out doughnuts, muffins and juice and raised more than $35 for Team WRAL in the Triangle Race for the Cure.
At the end of the day, the girls were amazed at how much change they raised for a good cause. They seem to understand the significance. After all, they are the granddaughters of two breast cancer survivors.
I know $35 doesn't seem like much, but it's certainly a start and an important lesson for a little girl who dreamed of a money tree. I'm hoping my daughter now knows how much better it feels to have a giving tree.