Talking about what we'd do with $640 million in lottery winnings was a highlight of our weekend. I doubt the kids really even knew what the lottery was before the Mega Millions jackpot grew so large that they were hearing about it everywhere. In an attempt to kill the hour drive to the city on Friday, we talked about what we'd do with a potential windfall.
There was lots of generosity and philanthropy. Life would get better for everyone we love, for sure. We would build a huge, luxurious lake house somewhere beautiful and warm and another somewhere mountainous and think seriously about where we wanted to live full-time. Jobs would be quit and dream jobs would be created. World travels would commence. Financial worries would be a thing of the past.
I commented to Mike how funny it was that the kids threw out a few ideas, but didn't have the same intensity that we did in planning out our ideal financial life. It made us feel good that whether things are tight or not, they don't feel financial pressure, or at least not for too long.
Lately though, Riley has been paying more attention to how much things cost. It's like, when I give them an idea of how expensive things are and try to help grow the roots of sound financial decision-making, she's the only one who actually hears me. She thinks about it.
At the end of the day on Friday, just before the big drawing, we stopped to buy some tickets. The girls were excited and even though we assured them that it was just for fun, they wanted to go in with me. While we waited in the long line, I noticed that Riley's fingers, all of them, were crossed. They were both a bit giddy, kind of jumping up and down. I reminded them that the chances were EXTREMELY low that we'd win and Riley blurted out loudly, "But I want to move to Hollywood!"
Everyone in line burst out laughing.
"Listen, even if we win, we're not moving to Hollywood!" I jokingly answered.
"Alright then, North Carolina!!" she responded with her best Groucho Marx eye brow raises.
Needless to say, we didn't win. But it took Riley a few days to believe in our loss. On Sunday morning, she raced out to get the newspaper and compare our numbers with the ones in the paper. Finally, she got it. Not this time. But what enthusiasm! What confidence that the future holds great things! They all have that and I love it. And I have it, too.
After the loss sunk in, Riley sneaked over to my phone and texted Mike at the gym.
"We won the laudery, Mike!" she wrote.
"What's that? A windfall of dirty laundry?" he responded. (Um, when it comes to winning, we've got that category covered!)