Savvy or Not Savvy: $1500 Strollers, Lemonade Busters and Tutoring


$1,500 buys 20 goats for an impoverished African village, two months-worth of groceries for a Canadian family of three, or 50 French pedicures at the place around the corner from SavvyMom HQ. What else does it buy? A swanky, modern day stroller called the Donkey (we’ll omit any reference to a donkey’s rear at this point).
There was a lot of buzz recently around the launch of Bugaboo’s pimped-out Donkey stroller that comes with more accessories than a ‘tween girl on her way to a Justin Bieber concert. I had two strollers in the early years of raising my kids (a single and a used double) and they were just fine. The first was a gift, the second cost about $250. So you can imagine that I cringe at the thought of spending that much dough on wheels. As for Sarah, over the years she spent that much or more on the various strollers (single, double, umbrella, jogger, light for transporting, heavy for getting through the snow…) and wagons her family of three kids (born in 3. 5 years) went through. So I suppose there is an argument for both sides.

As a family (and child) grows, transportation requirements change and that first stroller might not cut it anymore. One of the purported advantages of the Donkey is that it grows with your family. And in her Embrace the Chaos blog, Emma Waverman raised another good point: ‘Your stroller represents that little bit of freedom to interact in the world…’ It’s tough to put a price on that but still, it’s open for debate. $1500 for a stroller? Savvy or not so savvy?

This month, police in Georgia shut down a lemonade stand. They allege the ‘perps’, three little girls who were trying to save money to go to a water park, didn’t have a permit nor did they have any kind of FDA approval for their product. We allege the police were just being cranky because the girls weren’t offering coffee and donuts along with the lemonade. Savvy or not so savvy?

Are they Hyper-Parents or Tiger Mom wannabes? Or are they on to something that most of us aren’t (but really should be)? I’m talking about parents who hire tutors for their (very) young children. An article in the Globe and Mail last month talked about the trend of parents hiring tutors for their pre-school children in order to give their kids a leg up in their education. (I can`t help but wonder if these tutors get paid as much as the one who tutors Gwyneth Paltrow`s children.) Turns out that three- and four-year-olds face stiff competition when they enter preschool and kindergarten and by providing tutor-time to learn about things like sphere’s, cylinders and trapezoids, parents are giving them an advantage. At least these parents are being more proactive than the New York mom who sued her daughter’s pre-school because it was, ‘a ‘big playground’ teaching mere shapes and colours and therefore damaging her kid’s educational future.’

What do you think, Savvy or Not So Savvy? We’d love to hear from you, especially if you’ve hired a tutor recently for your toddler. (I could use a refresher on the difference between a sphere and a cylinder.)


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