Recently my wife and I realized we had both been handed down silver tea service settings by our mothers, and we really didn't know what to do with them. We certainly had no use for them, nor do we expect either of our boys will want them.
Along about the same time a client called. They had gotten one of those postcards in the mail - you've probably gotten one too - offering what appeared to be a steal of a deal on some land in North Carolina. They wanted to know if we thought it would be a good idea for them to buy this property to hand down to the kids.
And that's when it hit me.
Here's two examples of people wanting to leave a legacy to future generations. Their intentions were well meaning, but the strategy is lacking.
In my family's case, our parents and grandparents before them, probably has some sentimental value attached to the silver tea settings. But that sentimental value no longer has meaning to current and future generations. The same can be said of our clients wanting to buy dirt in a state that neither they or any of their family members have ever visited.
So if you want to leave a lasting legacy for your family. Don't buy things by experiences.
Grandma Judy loves her two grandsons, she's never missed any of their baseball games. She even goes fishing with them in the backyard pond, even though she hates to fish. A couple of years ago she took her grandsons on the trip of a lifetime, salmon fishing in Alaska.
Her grandsons probably won’t remember the baseball gloves or fishing lures she has bought them over the years. But I'm pretty sure they'll remember the salmon fishing trip to Alaska the rest of their lives. Probably even share that story with their kids and grandkids.
And now you know the real reason I'm taking my boys on our annual father/son surfing trips.
So quit buying your kids (and grandkids) "things" and start buying them "experiences". They’re priceless and will last a lifetime!