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Happy Valentine's Day!  Whether you love this holiday or think it's a beating, we wish you a wonderful day on Feb Fourteen.

Our kids love Valentine's  Day, and we go all out with heart-shaped pancakes on heart-shaped plates, flowers for the girls, chocolate strawberries for our son, then we take the easy way out and grab a random branch from outside and stick it in a vase.  Then we start a scavenger hunt that ends up quite hilarious.  We have the kids run all over the house following clues to get things that have to go on the tree.  The last clue leads them to a gift that is always a book.  Which brings me to the point of this month's newsletter....

I am often asked how to help parents motivate their kids to stay on top of their responsibilities.  My answer is often very difficult for parents to comply with, but here it goes:  there has to be a source of motivation for any human to do anything.  Whether it is doing something kind for your spouse because you are motivated by the smile that comes across his/her face, or  winning a sales contest because you are motivated by the money.  Children need motivation, too, and it also comes as either intrinsic or extrinsic.  You may have one child that is motivated by the smile and one that is motivated by the money....personalities do play into this. 

So here's the part that parents have a difficult time doing; not because they don't want to, but because it has become habit.  You have to have a carrot to dangle, so if you are constantly buying your children everything they want, why in the world would they be motivated to earn any money?  Birthdays and holidays are one thing, but our job as parents is to provide the necessities (and perhaps the occasional nicety) but you also want to teach your children the value of hard work. 

This is why we have both unrewarded and rewarded responsibilities as part of the fisherkids system.  There are some things we do because we have to do them, because it helps out the family, and because it's the right thing to do (this is the purpose of the responsibility magnet.)  But we somehow have to teach our children how to be responsible with money, so we have incorporated a way for them to earn it, not just be "allowed" it (this is the purpose of the chore sticks).   Finally, we throw both of these motivations (intrinsic + extrinsic, respectively) together and we are teaching our children how to one day live on their own. 

But we have to hold firm to the motivators.  There are many reasons not to buy your children everything they want, but for the purposes of this discussion, don't do it because they have to have a financial goal.  If they want it, they need to earn it, all the while continuing to "Give it" and "Save it" for the long term.

So like a Seinfeld episode, we are back to the original point....have a wonderful Valentine's Day and kiss those kids.  They are our gift, and it's okay to tell them so!

The Beck Family

should we really pay for chores?
responsibilities vs. chores   


Our company is based upon the principle that the family is a team.  Because of this, we firmly believe that there are responsibilities that are expected of each and every one of us to keep the team winning.  That's why we have the responsibility magnet as part of our system.  You list the responsibilities that are expected of your children each and every day. 
whiteboard example
We provide our children with the necessities and they provide us with help keeping our households running smoothly.  We have to hold them to those expectations just as we hold ourselves accountable. 

That said, stay realistic.  There are days when I wake up and put laundry on my mental to-do list.  By the end of the day, chaos has won and the laundry is pushed to the proverbial tomorrow.  There is a difference between procrastination and realistic expectations.

NOW....we also have to have a way to teach our children how to handle money responsibly.  We could "allow" them the money, or we could have them somehow earn it.  What better way to have them earn the money than to teach them how to live independently.  I have tried to come up with a better term than "chores" because that implies cleaning.  There is so much more to living independently than just cleaning!  Think about what you do on a daily basis that at some point you had to learn....and if it's age-appropriate, teach your child. 

So should we really pay for chores?  Expect some responsibilities as help for the family (and hold your children accountable for that), but find a means of having your children earn money so they can learn how to manage it responsibly.

what we love
chore stick picture tags  
We want to give our children as much accountability as possible for a couple of reasons:  they stay more engaged, they are more challenged (more challenge = less boredom), and they feel more accomplishment (accomplishment breeds work ethic).  So we have created a set of picture tags for the kids that either don't know how to read or have a difficult time reading.  We printed the chore underneath the picture to aid in word  association/recall.  Each set of 24 tags includes 2 blank tags for you to fill in the chores specific to your household.  Set includes chores such as: laundry, help clean bathroom, help clean kitchen, feed dog, clean up after pet, help cook, dust, sweep, and many more.  Comes with a set of glue dots so you can stick them directly to the chore sticks! ($10.00)  
fisherkids chore stick tags

where in the world... fisherkids? 

pinpoint map

Thank you for spreading the word!
 The Beck Family 

and finally....
an offer for you and your friends coming soon!

We dedicated 2011 to marketing our name, our product, and our customer service.  We were thrilled with the results and the advantages from the flash sale sites, collective buying sites, and coupon sites, but we unfortunately can run those forever.  We would go out of business!  I know the customer benefits when those sales are offered, but the offering company only gets a fraction of the sales price, so many companies end up broke.  We will not go under....helping families raise responsible children is our passion. 

SO....we are going to run our own flash sale soon!  Please like us on facebook, follow us on twitter, stalk us with nanny cams, whatever you can to stay on top of our site.  We will be offering a flash sale (good for four days only) sometime after Spring Break.  I know that's vague, but we are still in the planning stages.  We will keep you posted via this newsletter, facebook, etc....

And just so you know, there are currently 5 more days of a facebook discount.  Like us on facebook and get an instant code for 10% off.  Oh, heck.  Here's the code.  Get ready because it's very original and difficult to remember.  And it's good for one more week.  The code is....Like.

Please tell your friends!

In This Issue
should we really pay for chores?
what we love
where in the world is fisherkids
fisherkids in the news
website renovation round 1
help! our hooks don't fit!
product spotlight
archived newsletters
we are so social
check us out
good morning texas, 02.10.12

[please ignore the girl that is representing us....the segment before ours was a humungous python and I am....err....she is petrified of snakes.]    
website renovation 
round one....

Check out our new look!  We are slowly but surely renovating our online image!  Click on the logo below to go to the site...

new logo  
help!  our hooks don't fit!
why does this happen?

We know that occasionally, the hooks that come with our stations are super tight-fitting.  That is on purpose....really!  You might have to shove them into the peg holes, but here is why:  we were SO annoyed when we walk by our pegboards in the initial prototype phase and the hooks flew off the station (along with the 20 chore sticks in the bucket! and the bucket! and the money bags!....)  So we asked that the pegs fit as tightly as possible to avoid this happening and annoying our customers.  We do know, though, that occasionally we might have a couple that don't fit at all.  Please, please....DO NOT hesitate to contact us to replace them.  We are here for you and we will only grow if you are satisfied.


That's not lip-service, folks. 

You are very important to us.

Thank you!

product spotlight
personalized self-inking stampers

black border stamper We love these stampers!  Also available as embossers, you can choose your design and text.  BUT the fun doesn't stop there, friends.  These are interchangeable stampers so that if you want a different design (think holidays, scrapbooking, recipes, book clubs, etc), you just peel off either the inner design or outer text (or both!) and stick the new one on.  This keeps you from having to order an entirely new stamper....just order the new stamp die only! 

Each stamper comes with black ink, but feel free to order a different color, or two-color ink pads!  They are very easy to change out and not messy at all.  Check them out!  ($40.00 per stamper; $60.00 per embosser) 
our retailers
check us out in Plano and NYC!

We are pleased to let you know that our plans to expand to boutique outlets is under way!  We welcome our new partners and thank them profusely for their patience as we embark upon this new adventure! 

If you are in the Dallas area, check out:

Southern Vintage Glam   Like us on Facebook  

If you are in the Babylon, NY area, check out:
Bubble   Like us on Facebook  Follow us on Twitter

Coming Soon:
Uncommon Goods

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