Date Ideas: Financial Responsibility Dates

Having a great bank account isn’t nearly as important as having good, financial sense. Here are a few date ideas to help you find out about your date’s financial sense (as well as your own!).

Five Bucks Each

Take five dollars and give your date five dollars. Go to a store and split up to see who can purchase the most interesting, fun, or useful stuff for five dollars.

Check Out Local Yard Sales

Wander the suburbs on a Saturday afternoon in the spring and stop at all the local yard sales you find.

Monopoly

Play a serious game of Monopoly, all the way to the end—it’s the later part of the game where you start learning about people’s financial styles.

Come Up with a Budget Together

Do a mock budget together. If you had $__ per month income, how would you divide it out. You can learn a LOT about a person doing this.

Financial “Personality Profile”

There are a lot of personality profiles for financial styles that help you determine what you consider worth your money, how spendy or thrifty you are. Take turns taking a few such profiles.

Plan a Trip to Hawaii (don’t go, just plan)

Pretend you’re planning a trip to Hawaii together. Research flight costs, travel expenses, food, hotels, time off work, vacation days, and everything else that would be involved.

Test Drive Cars

Test drive cars at a dealership, and have conversations about the costs, and how you would pay for the car if you were to get it.

Play “The Game of Life,” or “Payday.”

There are a number of games, such as “The Game of Life,” or “Payday” that seek to imitate real life financial issues.

Go House Shopping

Go to a house show, where you can go see all the open houses for sale. Tour them as if looking to buy. Talk about what you’d like in a house someday and encourage your date to do the same.

DIY

Did you know you can make homemade laundry soap? Dishwasher soap? Ranch dressing? Hand/diaper wipes? Most common household items can be made from scratch. Try making some of these together. Try some practical skills, but also try some things based on one of your interests. If your date is really into hand-bags, find out how to make your own, and do it together.

The Fair

the-fair.JPGI love going to the fair. It’s such an interesting experience. All the people in the state are invited to participate by submitting something. Perhaps many of those projects represent a good part of their interests and skills, and yet few, very few, do it for a living. I’m sure they’d love to. In fact, if the opportunity presented itself, I’d bet most contributers to the items at the fair would far rather follow their interests instead of their present jobs if they could have the same basic pay and benefits.

But then again, perhaps if that were the case – if everyone did their hobby for their occupation, perhaps the individual works would not mean as much to the artist. As it is, people create what they create for the sake of creating; for the joy and fulfillment that comes of expression and creativity. There is a pureness to a piece that was created for the sake of the end product. When someone creates something for money or position, the art is merely a means, and not an end of itself.

There is just as much to be said for a piece that is created for the sake of a principle, idea, or message. Art gains its meaning in the intent of the author and in the reception of its audience. But when something is created only for money, the piece is only worth its monetary value. It can only be worth that amount, and rarely more. The remarkable thing is that there are some artists (and musicians and authors) that are able to put infinite meaning into their work, and still use the piece to make a living. Those are the real professionals. Those are the people that can carry emotion, meaning, and purpose in a frame, as it were, and share those gifts with the world. This may be a difficult balance for creators to find, but certainly the truly passionate will come through, and will make the world a far more beautiful place for the rest of us.

I believe that many of the truest and greatest authors and artists will never be known, because they are too busy living to put their art on paper. Many of the deepest thinkers and the greatest ‘live-ers’ have not the time to immortalize their compositions by putting them on paper, because to do so might take time from the glorious day to day experiences that make them the great artists that they are.

Gratefully, painting, music, poetry, and all of the great arts are products of the mind and heart, so they do not vanish with death. This life is only a grain of sand on the beach of eternity, and the greatest masterpieces will not show up in mortality.