One Man's Junk, Another First Grader's Treasure
Hazel's store day was Friday. When I dropped her off, the students were all sitting at their desks, arranged in a semi-circle to allow potential buyers plenty of space. I helped Hazel to her desk and we organized her goods: Valentine suckers, kazoos, chinese yo-yos, and jewels. My mom had donated the sparkly beads from a broken bracelet, and I took apart one of mine, and we collected a bunch of jewels. While I was there, I looked at the other kids' inventory--candy, shells, rocks, jewelry, random things from around the house (although I didn't see any electrical wire rockets!). I loved imagining each mom or dad coming up with something their child could sell.
When Hazel got home, I asked her about things went. She told me the pink sparkly jewels were most popular and then the kazoos. No one really gave a hang about the Valentine suckers (which I thought would go fast). She said she first charged $.05 for the kazoos, but then she couldn't fit any more money in her hand, so she changed it to $.01 (we're not real business types in this family).
Then she showed me her treasures: A pink and silver (funny looking) bracelet, a painted rock (mom we can use this for a spring decoration!) and some treats. She had plenty of money left over. She even bought an unwanted Laffy Taffy from some little girl because the girl really really wanted her to (my genes coming through again).
Jed put the painted rock next to my other spring decorations and Hazel was visibly pleased. As I watched her light up at the placing of her treasured object on display, I longed for those days again. I wished for the simplicity that allows little things to bring such excitement and joy. Those days slip by so fast, and soon we want much more and pay so much more for those wants. Don't you wish all you wanted was a few treats, a shell, a bracelet and a painted rock? And all you needed was $.50 to buy it?
Me too. So who's going to make my mortgage payment for me?