Several of my fellow bloggers have recently shared a more intimate look at the person behind the blog, and I enjoyed getting to know them better. Since imitation is often the best compliment, I decided to do something similar. I am very pleased to introduce you to me—Shannon Ryan: Financial Literacy Advocate.
A Mom, a wife, a sister, a friend, an Aunt, a daughter, a financial advisor, a speaker, a blogger, an author, a business owner, a rotarian, a board member, a girl scout troop leader, a marathon runner, and an advocate for financial literacy for children and adults. I have a full plate, but I love everything I do, which makes it fun to get out of bed every morning. I’m also very tired when I fall back into bed at night. 🙂
“All I Ask of You”, the love song from Phantom of the Opera, and we’ve been dancing together for 23 years!!
Pure joy. Who knew you could sit for hours and just look at a baby! I did not plan on being a mom, and I am so grateful I did not miss this journey but waited until I was ready to take it.
I had the concept of save, spend and share outlined for many years under the name The Piggybankers. I tried to make it work then, but it never panned out so I put the project on the back burner. After 2007 and the collapse of the financial markets due to debt, I knew my message of financial literacy for children and adults was more critical than ever.
Around the same time, my youngest daughter Taylor came flying down the hall with a pink leather change purse filled with coins all excited to tell me, “My purse is too heavy!” and it hit me: a heavy purse is the synonym for wealth. We all have “heavy purses” that we make decisions with every day, regardless of our income level. I realized “The Heavy Purse” was the perfect name and symbol for my book. Within 6 months, I was off and running again.
I’ve had several people ask me if The Heavy Purse is appropriate for boys. The answer is yes. The story is inspired by real events and is very personal to me. The concept of save, spend and share is for everyone, young and old, and the story itself is gender neutral. I have read The Heavy Purse to several large groups of children at local schools and boys responded just as enthusiastically when asked, “how will you save, spend and share your money?” Their enthusiasm and hunger to learn about money continues to amaze me and fills me with hope for their future.
Too much debt. The most unhappy people I meet have a mountain of debt that hangs over them and creates stress in their lives. Regardless of income, if you learn to live within your means and make decisions based on what you can afford and in alignment with your values, you will live a happier financial life.
Trying to fill our own childhood disappointment by giving too much to our children without teaching them how to make money decisions aligned with personal values. By doing this, we disable them financially.
My greatest desire with The Heavy Purse is to change the thinking in this country of when and how we need to educate children on financial literacy. The country is clearly off track!
Every night when I tuck my girls into bed, I pray they will be Safe, Healthy and Happy. My wish would be that every human being is Safe, Healthy and Happy. It’s my version of “World Peace”.
The Heavy Purse Store is now open! My new downloadable Money Club Workbooks are now on sale. Each workbook provides five targeted lessons to help you graise Financially Confident Kids. Please check them out in The Heavy Purse Store.
I'm afraid I fall into the category of filling out my childhood disappointments by giving them stuff I never had, it was also a way for me to try and justify that I was always working.
It was when we went down to one income that was the shocker for them. They couldn't understand why all of a sudden we were on a tight budget and I found myself explaining needs versus wants.
Now that they're coming into adulthood they're understanding the value of a dollar, phew :)
Have a great week!
And your phrase "Safe, Healthy and Happy" is something I am thankful for everyday. I figure as long as we have those 3 things we will have the strength to deal with anything :-)
I imagine this is definitely a balancing act. Still a long way off kids, but I hope we'll be able to juggle teaching them the value of money without depriving them of too much.
I love your mission. I wish my parents had done more financial teaching when I was a kid. They ended up doing pretty well,but told us it wasn't our job to worry about money. Guess what? We all grow up and it becomes our job. If you can go into it with experience, that's much better than having no idea. I still have 35 year olds who come in broke and call their moms to pay for contacts. I don't ever want my daughter to have to be in that situation and I hope I would not keep bailing her out if she was!
I applaud you also with a 23 year marriage, I know that's so hard these days. I love hearing about families that are making it in all areas of their lives.
I'm sharing a post today about playing the prosperity game and it's about how to change our mindset we have on money. As a child growing up I was always told we never had any money but I was never taught why. I sure wish my Mom would have explained to me about saving back then because she's a pro. If I would have had children I'm sure I would have made plenty mistakes myself with them all because of my own upbringing.
I think educating children about money as early as you can is so important. If they were to understand now how it can benefit them later on I think they would be more willing to go that route. I sure hope so and it sounds like they are from what you've share.
Congratulations on will your accomplishments and again, thanks for sharing this with us. You're on a wonderful and important mission.
I'm glad you're talking to your readers about money and look forward to reading your post. We all need money, but sometimes instead of us controlling it, our money controls us. Most of us grew up with parents who never talked about money. I was fortunate mine did. It made a huge difference in my life as I hope it will my daughters' lives too.
I think you said it best when you said it doesn't help to try to compensate for childhood disappointment by giving too much to our kids. I grew up in a neighborhood where most parents were first generation Americans. They spoiled their kids with expensive shoes, clothes, and other things because they didn't have those things growing up. A lot of the kids dropped out of school, or never quite grew up.
I am glad someone has taken the initiative to teach little ones about finance. The things kids learn when their little stick with them forever.