One of the sweetest moments of our weekend involved our neighbors’ child. We had a knock on our door Saturday evening and it was 5 year old ‘C’ with her dad. She was all bundled up in winter gear (it is January in Wisconsin!) but still had her girl scout sash on over her coat. With a couple of gentle prompts from dad she asked me if I’d like to buy Girl Scout cookies. Of course I did!!!! Without being prompted from dad, she politely thanked me for my order. It was one of the most delightful transactions I’ve had in ages.
Now I want my blog to be a positive space so I want to refrain from criticizing but it was SO nice to be asked by the child instead of being hit up by the parent. More often than not the entire sale process from start to finish is done by the parent either on social media or in the workplace and the child is completely left out of the loop. That is perfectly fine and I am always happy to support a good cause so I almost always purchase and do so cheerfully. But I do feel like it misses the spirit of why these sales and fundraisers began in the first place–for the children to take some ownership and to gain a reward through their effort. Selling the most cookies might feel great but I can’t imagine if a parent does most of the work that it is a sustaining, self-esteem building kind of great. The things in life that feel the best are often the things that stretch us, make us feel a bit uncomfortable. Which is why when Julia is old enough to participate in sales, it is going to be her effort. I will accompany her, facilitate where necessary but I won’t be doing the work for her 🙂