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Three Purses of Gold – Chapter One Preview

To celebrate the launch of Three Purses of Gold, the 5th book in the Financial Fairy Tales series, we are delighted to share a preview of chapter one.

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Once upon a time in the Land of Argent, there lived a merchant called Reuben and his three daughters.
Reuben made his living by sailing to far off lands and bringing back exotic things to sell. His cargos included strange fruits that no-one had ever tasted, fragrant spices and exotic coloured gems.
He typically made two or three such trips a year and was busily preparing for his latest voyage. His daughters always begged to go along and this time was no exception.

The youngest, Poppy, was particularly persuasive, pleading with her father and offering lots of reasons why she should go with him.
Despite providing many examples of how useful she could be, this time, like always, her father held firm.
“No, my loves”, he explained, “it will be a long and hazardous journey. We may be at sea for weeks. It’s much safer for you to stay at home with your Grandmother”.
“But Grandma makes us do housework every day”, protested Rose the middle daughter.
“And she makes us go to bed before dark”, moaned Lily the eldest.
“Now, now girls, don’t complain. You will stay with Grandma and be good. She loves taking care of you”. Then, after a pause, he added,
“I’ll make you a deal. While I am away, whichever one of you wins my
challenge can come on the next trip”.
“Great!” Shouted all three girls together, “What’s the challenge? How do we win?”

As much as they loved each other, the sisters never missed an opportunity to be competitive.
“I will tell you all about it in the morning” said their father, “but now it’s time for bed.”
Reluctantly, and with a grumble and a groan, they each gave their father a kiss before going upstairs.
Reuben smiled proudly as he watched them go whilst thinking
what a lucky man he was.

The next morning over breakfast, the girls chatted excitedly about what the challenge might be and who was going to win.
Reuben began to explain the rules.
“I am going to give each of you a purse with twelve gold coins”, he
began.
The girls gasped; that was quite a lot of money.
“But”, their father said, raising his hand for quiet, “I will expect you to give it back upon I return. What you decide to do with it, is up to you. Any profit you make will be yours to keep. The winner will be the one who makes the most, and she will come on my next trip”.
With that, he produced three red velvet purses, each tied with a gold thread.
Reuben playfully weighed them in his hand before passing one to each of his daughters.

The Financial Fairy Tales: Three Purses of Gold chapter 1 illustration

Later that day, they all embraced at the dockside before Reuben boarded his ship. The girls ran along the harbour wall to wave for as long as they could, before the wind caught the sales and the ship headed out to sea. Gradually getting smaller and smaller in the distance, until it became just a tiny speck on the horizon.

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Mastermind Groups, Audiobooks and Serendipity

You may have heard of mastermind groups and their potential for elevating your business and personal success. I first became aware of the potential power of masterminds through the iconic book – Think and Grow Rich. Where the success secrets of many of the world’s highest achievers were distilled by author Napoleon Hill.

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Mastermind groups work by focusing the combined skills and experience of their members to solve challenges being faced by individuals. In Think and Grow Rich it was reported that Andrew Carnegie, then the richest man in the world, met regularly with Henry Ford and Thomas Edison among others.

After reading the book I was keen to find and participate in a mastermind group to draw upon the collective wisdom with a focus on my financial education business which I had recently started. Here’s where the first serendipity occurred. Shortly after having the thought I received an email from David Ricklan at SelfGrowth.com announcing that they were launching mastermind groups for people in the personal development industry. I eagerly applied and after some time was even asked if I would like to facilitate a group.

While the group memberships were being put together, I began thinking about the first challenge I could bring to my group. I had recently published my first book in the Financial Fairy Tales series, Dreams Can Come True and I was very interested in exploring an audiobook version. I could imagine for example; the book being playing in the car on the school run.

The first member of my particular mastermind group was an American lady currently living in Japan. During our initial conversation we discussed her goals and plans and how the group could support her. When we tasked about my desire for an audiobook I was amazed to hear that not only was she a voice actor, but also had a friend who was a Grammy award winning musician who she could ask to provide original music.

Within a few weeks she had produced a fantastic audiobook version of Dreams Can Come True which has been downloaded and enjoyed by hundreds if not thousands of children and parents around the world.

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For me this story illustrates the power of our intentions and the reward for taking action. I am sure many of us have experiences synchronicities such as these which occur when we listen to and act upon our intuition.

If you feel curious about listening to the Dreams Can Come True audiobook then we have a few coupons allowing a free download from audible. Please comment below with you email address or get in touch via our social media pages and I can send you a unique discount code.

Helping Kids Learn About Money

Has there ever been a more important time to help our kids learn about money? Record levels of student debt, lack of financial education in schools, unconscious spending through apps and games plus the movement towards a cashless society are all compelling reasons.

Did you know that research has shown many of our values and beliefs around money are formed by the age of 7?
This means that as adults, our money decisions are being heavily influenced by the ideas we picked up as kids, whether helpful, or for many a hindrance.

The Financial Fairy Tales are a fun way to introduce money ideas and tools from an early age. Concepts such as saving, investment, budgets and entrepreneurship are explored though stories set in a fairy tale world.

The Financial Fairy Tales Patreon - helping kids learn about money
The first 3 Financial Fairy Tales stories and Activity Book

We have big plans for 2019 and beyond which includes 3 new story books, more learning activities and an animation series. Above all we want to help more kids around the world grow up with a better understanding of money by providing the skills, tools and beliefs which will empower them now and in the future.

How You Can Help

By becoming a supporter through Patreon, you can help us continue our work in creating these stories and learning activities. Patreon is a website and platform where people just like you can choose to support creative and artistic projects – whilst getting lots of cool benefits for yourself.

Visit the Financial Fairy Tales Patreon page and help us to help more kids learn about money.

Learning about Money- the Financial A, B, Cs

When it comes to learning about money there is so much information that it is challenging to know where to start. That is no excuse however for burying your head in the sand and making money someone else’s responsibility.

This simple guide outlines a few essential money principals.

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A is for Awareness

Typically people know how much they earn. Whether it’s by the week, month or hour, you know how much you earn and notice when something is different. But what about the other side of the equation? Do you know how much you spend?

Lack of awareness of spending can lead you to run out of cash, go overdrawn or rely on credit cards. Each of these has financial consequences. Being in charge of your money gives you a sense of wellbeing and control. A good place to start is by checking your bank statement, either online or a paper version. Go through line by line, can you identify each item? Many people find things they do not recognise or regular payments which they had forgotten about such as subscriptions. Maybe you accepted a trial offer which now is being charged?

Another example of awareness is being conscious over small regular amounts which you might spend every day. If you spent for example £5 a day on lunch, that may equate to over £1000 during a year. Would it be worth making a sandwich or salad at home and have £1000 for a holiday or other purpose?

B is for Budget

For many, Budget is a four letter word, but it need not be a negative. Taking a few minutes to plan what you are going to spend is a great step to putting you in control of your money and not the other way around. You can set a budget for any area of your life including fun and socialising. Many people find that by setting aside money for fun purposes means they can enjoy it more and be free of any guilt that they should be saving or spending the money elsewhere.

Setting a budget is a really simple task. Take a few minutes to list all the areas in which you spend money, then put your best estimate of the amount you currently spend next to it. When you add up the figures hopefully the total will be less than you earn. If not you will need to adjust the spending until it does. While you are feeling virtuous why not include a category for saving and reward yourself with a fun or play budget which you have to spend each month.

C is for Compound Interest

Einstein described compound interest as the eighth wonder of the world. The trouble is that it can work for you or against you. If you are paying interest on loans or credit cards the power of compound interest is increasing the debt and draining your current and future income.

If you have an outstanding balance on a credit card and just pay the minimum percentage each month it may take over 20 years to clear the debt! If you are only able to pay a fraction each month, make sure you are paying a fixed money amount rather than the percentage sometimes offered when you take out the card.

With interest so low at the time of writing there may seem like little incentive to save. This may be true in terms of financial gain from the savings alone, but the accumulated money saved can eventually be invested and grow at a better rate. The habit of saving money and living on less than 100% of your income is the important financial gain.

Begin Financial Education Early: It Makes Perfect Cents!

As a responsible parent, you want to ensure that your child is healthy, safe and happy. Part of instilling confidence and self-esteem within your child is making sure that they understand money and finances, and that they’re ready when they do eventually fly the nest into the big wide world. It’s never too early to start teaching your youngsters about money. Having an open and transparent attitude to family finances and being there to answer any questions that your toddler, adolescent or teenager may have means that they’ll be clued up when they have to make major financial decisions later in life. Take a look at how you can teach your kids the value of money.

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Structured Play

Two-year-olds are now able to open up an iPad, swipe across the screen and watch their favorite nursery rhyme on youtube.com without any intervention from mom or dad. Technology is taking over, and this is the same when it comes to money. Internet banking and paying by card means that toddlers rarely see any real money. When you are playing shop or heading down the local store to purchase a small item, get your real life notes and pennies out. Allow your child to feel the genuine article, not a plastic replica. Little kids love nothing better than feeling more grown up than they are, so allow them to pay the guy behind the counter when you pick up your newspaper and see if they can count their change.

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Family Finances

As your kids grow older, they may begin to want for more things whether this is the latest smartphone, console or tablet. If you are struggling to afford their wishlist, it’s vital that you tell them why. You may have recently renovated the kitchen, had to fork out for a new gasket on the car and paid for them to head off on their annual school trip. This meant you had to take out more short-term loans and credit cards putting you into debt. Explain to your child that this is manageable but only if you reign in the spending for a while. If this situation is familiar to yours, consider heading to a site like consolidate.loan and compare debt consolidation lenders. This way all those tiny chunks of debt can be merged into one monthly repayment.

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Incentivise

The best way to get kids saving is to make it worth their while. As you give them pocket money, they may choose to save up for something like a drum kit or a trip to the cinema. Motivate them by pledging to top up their funds with $5 every time they save $20, giving them an extra impetus to save. As they see their nest egg accrue, you may want to introduce the idea of a bank account or other avenues down which they could see their money grow even further. As they get older, it’s important that children understand the importance of saving, so they don’t become frivolous with money as they enter college and adulthood.

Financial education is only sometimes taught in schools, but it should also be an integral part of the home. Teaching sound money sense from an early age will enable your child to grow up feeling confident, content and happy when budgeting, saving and spending.