Rowan and Kemper asked one day if I would make them cookies to sell at school so they could have more money to buy Gormiti (their current toy of choice). "Sure", I replied. Then I didn't hear anything about it for a handful of weeks. It came up again recently, so I decided to do it.
First, I calculated the cost for all the ingredients. Then I made the boys help measure, mix, and bake the cookies. We talked at length about how the whole operation would work, that they would first have to pay me the $6 for the ingredients before they got to keep anything, and that every cookie they gave away to their friends was one less quarter for their piggy banks. "We understand, mommy. We aren't going to give any of them away." I reviewed the process with them several times, and even gave them 8 quarters in case they needed to make change, then piled them into the carpool car with good luck wishes.
About 6 hours later, I picked them up from school. Normally the kids are all waiting for me up near the parking lot, but on this particular day they were still playing outside so I walked down to help them get their things together.
"So boys, how'd the cookie sale go?"
"Mommy, we only sold 3 cookies."
"So where are the rest?"
"Oh, we ate them."
I sent them to school with 48 chocolate chip cookies. I guess I wasn't terrifically surprised, but must confess I had higher hopes for their success. When I asked them where the money was, they didn't know. We found it the next day in the office, and the container had 9 quarters in it - the 8 I had given them plus one they had been paid. Neither could tell me what happened to the other $.50 they had earned the day before.
Kemper said, "Mommy, I don't ever want to sell cookies again." But he's mostly mad that they still owe me the $6. Which, of course, I have already told them they didn't have to pay. What a sucker.