I was at the library the other day and walked out not only with a book, but with a bag of money! They were giving away sacks with approximately $364 of genuine U.S. currency, so of course I had to get one.

Lest you think I am kidding you, here is a photo for proof:

The bag of shredded currency is a metaphor for the money people waste on unnecessary or frivolous spending. Like the money in the bag, it is real money that gets frittered away, little by little, with nothing to show for it. In fact, the bag of shredded bills is more exciting than some of the purchases I have made.

I think of the children’s book Alexander, Who Used to be Rich Last Sunday*. He didn’t shred his money, but he made small, inconsequential purchases until his money was gone. “Good-bye fifteen cents,” he says, over and over. I am sure many can relate to his habits.

Think about your budgeting at home and at your organization and see if you can’t make some changes that improve your fiscal health. Money Smart Week (April 23-30), highlights ways people can be more aware of and better manage their personal finances. At the website, there are dozens of resources on financial literacy, credit, budgeting and more. 

It’s fun to get a bag of shredded cash at the library, but money without values looses its allure when applied to your real hard earned greenbacks. Use Money Smart Week to take steps so your budget isn’t unintentionally shredded going forward.

beth triplett

*Alexander, Who Used to Be Rich Last Sunday by Judith Viorst, 1978. (Yes, it’s the same Alexander who had a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.)

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