Home > Family, Parenting > One (priceless) quarter

One (priceless) quarter

shouted my six-year-old*,
despite the fact he was
not two feet from me.
“He keeps trying to
climb into bed
with me!”

He gestured
toward his bedroom,
where his little

(Every night,

“Tell you what, sweetie.
If you let him lay down with you,
I’ll give you one quarter.
You don’t have to,
but … if you–”

“A quarter?!

He not only 
let Littler J climb
into bed, he snuggled
with him, and read
him stories;

when I peeked in,
they were snuggled
together, reading,
a sight worth
so much more
than one

Since then,
Li’l D has earned
two dollars
in quarters,

with his non-mandatory
snuggles** warming
my heart a little


* He’s almost seven,
but I called him seven
exactly once before deciding
I would not do that again until
the calendar makes
saying otherwise
a lie.

** Littler is always shouting,
“Mommy snuggles!” and “Daddy snuggles!”
This led my husband recently to start howling,
“Wifey snuggles! Wifey snuggles!”
Which is, well, ridiculous.
Also adorable.

Categories: Family, Parenting Tags: , , , ,
  1. September 14, 2016 at 8:32 pm

    😀 I can totally relate to this! It’s a very nice piece.

    • September 14, 2016 at 8:52 pm

      Thank you!

      I know some belong to the “never anything-remotely-resembling-bribery” camp, but man … after a month of hours daily spent in conversation like this, it was so nice to have a little calm. 🙂

      • September 14, 2016 at 10:28 pm

        Whatever works, right 🙂 Could become expensive long term tho 😉

  2. September 14, 2016 at 10:30 pm

    Heart melting.
    Thank you.

  3. September 15, 2016 at 2:39 am

    Awwwww. Quarters. Good idea!

    • September 16, 2016 at 5:49 am

      I just really, really wanted the screaming to stop! I’m glad it took.

      Since our Oregon trip last month, sleep has remained a struggle. “But we got to sleep together when we were in hotel rooms!” has turned into “Why is this not always?!” (Well, dear sons, it’s because I can’t stay asleep when you stretch across my face and kick me repeatedly in your sleep!)

  4. Paul
    September 15, 2016 at 3:02 am

    Wifey Snuggles! Bwahaha! Someday in the far far future they’ll realize that they owe their existence to Wifey Snuggles!

    One day a long while ago, I had a reel of undersea cable on a flatbed and it was the Friday of a July 4th weekend. The reel (which was all I had left from a shipment from Toronto that had a few drops) was consigned to Fairbanks Alaska but I had to deliver it to Seattle Tacoma Box company in Seattle for crating and transshipment. I was in Phoenix Thursday when I called to arrange unloading. I got through to the receiver and asked if he could come in on Saturday to take 10 minutes and lift the reel off. I could reload on Sunday in Kelowna BC: a load of water slides for a new water park in Toronto. If I could get the reel unloaded, I could reload and drive Sunday and Monday and deliver Wednesday in Toronto. If I couldn’t get unloaded, I would have go wait until Tuesday just to unload. Driving I could make for the truck about $1,300 USD per day, so in otherwords the delay would cost me 3 days or about $3,900 USD.

    When I asked the receiver if he could unload Saturday,, he started on a rant about how this was his weekend with his family and how he worked so hard and his kids missed him and he had promised his wife he would spend the weekend with the family, and on and on – Blah, Blah, Blah. I let him rant for about 10 minutes about his family and when he wound down and went silent I said:

    “Would $150 cash help your family?”

    His Response:

    “What time do you want me there?”

    • September 16, 2016 at 5:51 am


      When Li’l D was much littler, he’d run circles around the couch when Anthony got home, shouting, “My family, my family, my favorite, my favorite!”

      Yesterday, Anthony greeted me with a silly dance on the porch and shouts of, “My wifey, my wifey!” :p

  5. September 15, 2016 at 3:51 am

    A heart-opening story with an image to match. Lovely.😍

    • September 16, 2016 at 5:54 am

      Every time I peek in and see them snuggled together, my heart’s capacity grows a little larger.

  6. September 15, 2016 at 5:14 am

    Money is consistently a universal motivator. At seven, my daughter would have negotiated to $1 as she last settled for a quarter around 4 or 5. Now, almost 10, she is negotiating a per hour rate for her chores. I’m afraid for her future boss’s if the trend continues. My brother and I never had the kind of relationship your sons have here. I hope they can hold onto that for the rest of their lives as I’m realizing now it’s important to do so.

    • September 17, 2016 at 2:59 pm

      I hope they hold onto it, too! Because of my experience with my siblings, I so hoped for closeness between these guys. They have some squabbles, especially around bedtime, but overall … they adore each other to pieces, and I hope they’ll find strength and comfort in each other for many decades to come. 🙂

  7. September 15, 2016 at 5:56 am

    This warmed my heart this Thursday morning. But this must be a six year old thing, because I’ve gone through the same thing. Minus the quarter. I wish I’d thought of it. But crazy enough, he’s now seven years old, and just last night HE was the one that begged me to let his little brother sleep with him. I hesitated since I wanted to make sure they had a good nights sleep, but I thought very quickly the repercussions of discouraging it. It was definitely worth it too. Its always nice to see our kids having loving moments with each other.

    • September 17, 2016 at 3:07 pm

      Aaaw! Li’l D is almost seven. I hope he’ll ask once in a while, after his brother’s a little bigger and more consistently sleeping in his bed. (Most the night last night!)

      Thank you for sharing the factors you balanced as you made your decision. It’s so good to see how others weigh things, and not just the end result.

  8. September 15, 2016 at 7:47 am

    Such sweetness!

  9. September 15, 2016 at 1:30 pm

    Gah, bless them ❤ I might try that one night and see if that gets Baby Girl to bed with less fuss (LM has asked for her to lay down with him).

    • September 17, 2016 at 3:15 pm

      Fingers crossed! I know it won’t work forever, but I’m glad it’s working now. (Now, if only we could figure out how to address the D-wants-light/J-needs-dark-for-good-sleep dilemma. Neither Anthony nor I can get solid nights of sleep as long as that battle continues!)

      • September 18, 2016 at 7:11 am

        Oh lord, I can only imagine!

  10. September 15, 2016 at 2:45 pm

    Adorable! I hope you’re charging Anthony a quarter for wifey snuggles. 😉

  11. September 16, 2016 at 5:37 am

    I’m a big believer in the bribe. I even bribe myself all the time to get stuff accomplished! I think it’s a good thing to show that good actions can have rewards – and I know you, there are plenty of actions that aren’t “rewarded” and that is a good balance for boys 🙂 Love the solution you came up with! Have a great day Deb!

    • September 17, 2016 at 3:20 pm

      You are so right! There really are a lot of actions that aren’t rewarded, so that rewarding some of these things I cherish most dearly really does make sense in this light. Thanks. ♥

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