Jefferson County OHCE (Oklahoma Home and Community Education) will meet at 12 noon, 3rd Tuesdays, at the Waurika Sr. Citizens Center.  Our next meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, January 15.  Tara Brown, Jefferson County OSU Extension Educator, FCS/4-H Youth Development will present a program on “Cooking Under Pressure” using an Instant Pot.  Come join us!

Co-Parenting for Resilience Divorce or separation is not an easy or favorable decision, especially when minor children are in the home.  A class is available for divorcing or separating parents with minor children living in the home.  My next class is scheduled for 1 p.m. Tuesday, February 12, 2019. Pre-registration is required. Call Jefferson County OSU Extension Office at 580-228-2332 for registration information.  This class is mandatory by law in Oklahoma and is also valuable for Grandparents and other relatives of minor children going through a divorce or separation.

Jefferson County Jr. Livestock Show

It is not too soon to begin thinking about our county’s Jr. Livestock show which is scheduled March 6-9, 2019.  Entry deadlines have passed and many of the 4-H and FFA members are getting their show animals ready for the big day!  Lots of hard work goes into preparing an animal to show as well as getting the show itself ready.  Barns need to be clean, sound system needs to be checked, Concession stand needs to be prepped and so forth.  Behind the scenes are Fair Board members, parents, Ag Educators, your county Extension staff and other volunteers who spend their time getting the show ready before and during the show days.  Come take time and show your support of our students and thank those who make efforts to give you a good county Jr. Livestock Show!

Teaching kids to be conscious consumers.

 Did your children receive money for a Christmas gift? If so, it is probably burning a hole in their pockets right now. They are thinking about the ways they will spend it, as soon as mom or dad has time to take them to the store.

They may be dreaming of a gift that Santa wasn’t able to give them, something they saw on a television commercial or something a friend received that they must have, said Cindy Clampet, Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension family resource management assistant specialist.

“Typically, children are impulsive spenders looking to blow the bucks quickly on whatever appeals to them at the moment,” Clampet said. “One of our tasks as parents or adults in children’s lives is to teach them how to become conscious consumers. Being an aware and careful buyer is key to developing life-long responsible spending habits.  If these habits are not instilled early, children may grow up purchasing luxuries first, with little left over for necessities. And life on their own as adults could prove to be a financial headache.”

To help children learn how to be a conscious spender, teach kids money is a scarce commodity. In other words, there is not enough money to buy everything they want. So, kids must make wise choices in spending their cash to satisfy their wants. Those wise choices should be made on the basis of need first, such as clothing before a video game. Stress the importance that a portion of the money should be saved for the future – you never know what new needs may develop.

Before you head to the mall with your child, Clampet suggests parents take time to discuss some conscious consumer tips.

 •Make a shopping list and stick to it. This will help keep them from buying impulsively and having regrets later. Give a “buyer’s remorse” example from your own life to make the point.

•Research the products your child wants to buy, either online, through ads, or in the stores. Do price comparisons to get the best value for your dollar.

•Set a budget or limit on the amount of dollars to be spent. Once the child reaches that magic number, he is done.

•Buy only items your child love, so you will wear or use them over and over again. Just because he has money to spend doesn’t mean it has to be spent today.

•Do you need to buy it today?  Really? If you can delay the purchase until next time, you may appreciate it more – and have money left for priority items today.

•When you buy products with designer labels, you are paying for the label as well as the product. Is it worth the price to do this?

•Watch out for shopper’s envy. Just because your best friend has one doesn’t mean you have to buy one. Be an original shopper, rather than imitating others.

•Be aware of marketing tricks. The “buy two, get one free” means you now have three when you needed only one.

Now it’s time to let your child get out and practice his or her skills as a conscious consumer. Remember to lead by example. You should model responsible spending by following the coaching tips yourself. Point out situations where you’re tempted to buy but resist, and practice being a conscious consumer instead.  

“Realize shopping mistakes may be made on the way to developing responsible spending habits. Conscious consumers are not built in a day,” Clampet said. “Keep reinforcing your coaching tips and watch for gradual improvement in financial decision-making. You’ll know they’ve arrived when these new habits become second nature and they question you on a purchase.”  


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