We play the lottery every day and we win… every time.
Ok, now you’re getting suspicious. (what’s the gimmick here, Sam?)
Ok, you caught me. You caught the tater. (don’t know that reference? I feel sad for you.) When I say lottery, I don’t mean that money-sucking version of gambling you can play at 7-Eleven. I mean we take that money and put it in “The Jug”.
Let me explain young skywalker.
We have a big water jug. Like the kind the culligan man brings. Every day when we come home, any $1 bills and change are deposited into the jug. When it’s full, we take that puppy to the bank and cash her in for something fun.
There are several things going on here:
- Respect that change! Spare change often gets wasted away on little stuff. Give it a future beyond that ridiculous Diet Coke. Save it and buy something fun later on!
- Breaking a $20 isn’t something we do lightly. Because I know, once I break that $20 any change and single bills will go into the jug… and I won’t have any money in my wallet! It’s psychological more than anything. It prevents me from breaking a $20 bill for something unnecessary, like a pack of gum.
- It becomes a game for our kids. Often in our household you can hear a little voice saying “Daddy give me some money, Put it in the jug!”. How can you resist those little voices? (No, they are not in my head… well, most of them are not in my head)
- Give your lost money a home. A jug shaped home. Lost money, any denomination automatically goes into the jug. That $5 you found in your jeans after being in the washer? In the jug! You didn’t know you lost it, which means you won’t miss it now. This is also true of money you lent people you forgot about. When they pay you back, yep you guessed it… JUG!!!
- Actually win at the lottery. It’s become our own form of the lottery. We don’t feel compelled to buy that lottery ticket while getting gas because that $1 has a brighter future… like as a flat screen TV for your bedroom. Or a family vacation. Or, in our case, college tuition! (Ok, I admit college tuition is not as sexy as a flat screen TV. We’re not sexy. We know this.)
Consider your change to be found money. Stop buying small things (like a piece of paper with numbers on it) and start buying those fun big things you never seem to have the money for. You can even put a sign on the outside of the jug like “FAMILY BIG SCREEN” or “DISNEY”.
The jug allows you to win something with that $1 burning a hole in your pocket.
Get a jug. Put your change and $1 bills in the jug every day. Do it.
You know you want to.