December 15, 2011

Shadowbox Banks (to save for something special)

My kids don't usually write up long or detailed wish lists for Santa.  However, this year all three of them requested an iPod Touch for Christmas (after seeing several friends and cousins with them recently).  Like most of us, though, Santa is on a budget this year.  Even one iPod would be stretching it, so three iPods would be out of the question.

Luckily, Santa's elves had a very clever solution that I think will be the next best thing to an actual iPod under the tree.  The elves shared with me what they did in their workshop and I really like the way they turned out.

Look at this smart solution...


Here's what the elves did:

 (Excuse the fact that the pictures switch between the three different banks, those silly elves kept getting sidetracked during the photo-taking process)


1.  Pick up a shadowbox frame (they used a 5x7" one) and make up a picture of the special something to save for (the elves got an iPod image from the Apple website and used Picnik to design the 5x7" picture)


By the way, did you know that Santa's elves
often pick up the supplies they need
at regular stores when they're closed for the night
and all the people and employees have left?
That's how the elves picked up these frames on sale at JoAnn's!



2.  Cut out your picture to fit your shadowbox and cut a small opening for the money.



3.  Line up your picture with the backing for the shadowbox (these were made out of foam board) and then cut a money slot in that as well.


4.  The elves thought these banks might be able to used to save for other special items in the future, so they just put a little bit of glue around the money slot to adhere the picture to the backing.  This way, once they've saved for their iPods, the kids can simply replace the picture and start saving for something else.


5.  That's it!  Put it all together and your shadowbox bank is ready to go!



Just put your money in from the back...


... and with each deposit, you're one step closer to buying that something special!



Santa's elves told me that each frame was only $4 on sale and Santa said he would probably put $10 in change and bills in each bank to start the kids on their way.  Santa's accountants were very happy that he was spending $42 instead of $600+ and I think the kids will learn a valuable lesson about saving for the things they want most! 


 

30 comments:

  1. Love this idea. My guys is only 4 but I am going to store idea for the future!!

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  2. I love this!! My niece has talked about saving up for a dSLR camera, and I already decided I was going to give her some money to help get her started. This will be great!!

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  3. You come up with some of the neatest solutions! I'm still in love with your e-book book cover! :)

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  4. LOVE this idea! Thanks for sharing :)

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  5. I love the idea but aren't you a little concerned about their reaction on Christmas morning? It's great parenting to make them save up their money for something they want, but my concern would be when they open it, see the picture of the iPod and then the realization that it's not what they expected. I want my children to be responsible with money and to be realistic about expectations for Christmas (there's no way we could afford 3 either!), but at the same time I want them to have positive experiences on Christmas.

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    1. It teaches kids to appreciate what they do get for Christmas. That's the problem. We've lost sight anout what Christmas is actually about. It's not about the presents and if kids can't appreciate the things the things they do have/get do they really deserve anything at all?

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  6. Very cute idea! Defintely doing this the next time something "big" is on the wish list!

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  7. Dj, I thought about that. However, I'm pretty sure they realize that it's very unlikely that they'll actually be getting an iPod on Christmas. They know that Santa only has a certain amount to spend and they've been saving some money in little containers already. I figure these banks will just be giving them a specific spot to save in. Plus, if they get any $ for Christmas from relatives, it can go right in their new bank if they choose.

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  8. I really like this idea. I think it makes a great bank for anything. You could change the picture out when they save the money up.:)

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  9. I love this idea! I'll definitely be making it for my girls!

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  10. This is a great idea!!! Thanks for sharing, visiting from Get Your Brag On!

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  11. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  12. Rubber cement would be a great idea to use in order to secure the backing since you can easily peal apart the paper and backing and then just rub away all the remaining rubber residue.

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  13. Love this idea, Laura. This would even be fun for a rainy day or vacation fund.

    Sharing @ my Pinterest...

    :)

    Did Santa's favorite elf score 80% off at Michael's this past Sunday? My checking account cried the next day.

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  14. Do you think coins would break the glass? I'm interested in doing this for our "Tahiti Fund" with a gorgeous picture of the beach in the back...but most of what we put in is spare coins and I'm afraid it would break the front.

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    1. You could always swap out the glass with plexi.

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  15. Love it! I posted a link to this on my blog...thru my pinterest board.
    Thanks!
    Jennifer @ The Craft Barn

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  16. this is an awesome idea! My sister said "I need to do this with a vacation picture." :) Such a great way to teach saving for something you want!

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  17. Dear Anonymous from 12/23,

    We've put lots of coins in ours and haven't had a problem with the glass at all. Good luck (and hope you can save up for that Tahiti trip!)

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  18. Hi Laura,
    I'm making one of these for my little sister (16th birthday - car fund!). I was just wondering if your frame only had the foam back, or if there was also a thicker, more solid one? On my frame, there is a thick, wood-like back that the foam is attached to (all of the hooks and metal clasps to lock the frame are on the thick back). Just wanted to know your thoughts on what to do with it? Maybe leave it off, cut through the foam, and give the thicker back to her with the gift in case she wants to re-use it? Anyone else run into this?

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  19. Hi Brianna,

    The frames I bought only had the foam back and it's holding up fine. I would probably use just the foam on yours as well. If it's attached to the wood, you could just cut another piece of foam board to fit.

    Hope this helps (and your sister loves her gift!)

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  20. love this idea!! im gonna do this for saving for my fiance and i's honeymoon!!

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  21. I love the idea! My only fear is that for big things (trips and in my case a expensive camera lens) it is a lot of money to have in one place out of the bank.

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  22. Julie Anne,

    What we did was as it the bank filled up (especially with their folded up $1 bills), I had the kids count out their $$ and we deposited that in the real bank. It would be about $70 or so and they wrote the amount on a slip of paper that they put back in the shadowbox bank. It was helpful because they could see how much they'd saved so far, we didn't have too much cash in the house, and they earned a few pennies in interest once they deposited their savings to date.

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  23. I see that this is an older post so I am sorry I am so late to jump on the band wagon.lol, I love this idea. I am going to try this but see if I can put a hole in the top on the frame to slip the money in so maybe I can hang it and keep it up when they put their money in. Well once I get some shadow boxes we will see how it works out. :) love your blog

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  24. Definitely give it a try. My original intention was to put a hole in the top, but the shadowboxes I got had a metal frame and I'd need tools that I don't have to cut through it. I'm sure if you found wooden frames you could do it fairly easily!

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  25. One of my Girl Scout suggested we do this as a troop to have the girls save for a trip to Savannah in 2 years. We will do lots of fund raising for the trip the girls will make theses at a meeting soon to start saving their spending money since the troop will not provide any extra for extras.

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