GRAND Magazine - February 2009 - (Page 20)

family money Get a job! By ABigAil gripmAN grandson matthew Shriner, 14, makes a lot of his ear mitt sales at flea markets where even babies are willing customers. No “Sha-na-na-na” doo-wop response from this grandson A little more thAN A yeAr Ago Cynthia Jones walked into her Parma, Idaho, living room to see her grandson Matthew Shriner sitting in front of the TV. Again. Fourteen-year-old Matthew (who claims he had just turned the TV off but admits that he was bored) recalls that his grandmother was “mad.” “I was sitting on the couch,” Matthew says. “I was bored. She comes in really angry and says, ‘Matthew, you’re going to get a business.’” Jones had just read Fast Cash for Kids by Bonnie and Noel Drew . “The book takes the lemonade stand for kids to a higher level,” she says. Jones was impressed. She believes in the value of hard work. Indulging her grandchildren isn’t her style. Challenging and supporting them is. (Jones, a retired nutritionist, has had her son, Micah, and his children, Matthew and his sister, Amber, 12, living with her for the last three years; recently, Micah’s second wife and their son, Major, 4, also moved in. “It’s very much like The Waltons—if you remember that show,” Jones says. “It’s advantageous financially, and Micah believes my role in the kids’ lives is important. I can teach them things and provide opportunities that he is unable to do while he returns to school. He was once a tactical paramedic, and he’s returning to the medical field after a hiatus.…”) But first: Get Matthew off the couch. Jones decided a business would be the answer. By both their accounts, Matthew was ambivalent about the idea of starting a business. He was intrigued but apprehensive. He told Jones that if he was going to start a business, then he would decide what it would be. She agreed, and reached for her Ear Mitts as she prepared to go grocery shopping. Matthew’s Ear Mitts were nearby. It was Matthew’s “aha’” moment. “I knew,” he said. “I knew I would sell Ear Mitts.” Ear Mitts are bandless ear muffs (like mittens that fit over your ears). Jones has several pairs, and the whole family loves them. So, with his grandmother’s help, Matthew began his business selling Ear Mitts. He set up a Web site,, and learned about accounting, inventory and marketing. Matthew is one of many distributors for the company, owned by the inventor, Brad Levinson. “Brad took a special interest in Matthew,” says Jones. “He even invited Matthew 20 GRAND FEBRUARY 2009

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of GRAND Magazine - February 2009

GRAND Magazine - February 2009
GRAND Central
On the Cover: Susan L. Taylor, One in a Million
Get a Job!
The Healthy Crib
Movin’ to the G’Kids
Closing In
10 Disney Secrets
Just the Family We Are
Grand Prix: 0-3
Left Behind
Cycle Safe
GRAND Finale

GRAND Magazine - February 2009