Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Find a Penny, Pick it Up

My mommy always told me that it’s important to think highly of myself. She made it a point to tell me that she loved herself and thought she was beautiful. She didn’t care what anyone else said about her. She knew who she was and she loved who she was.

With that said, my mom has ALWAYS walked with her eyes glued to the ground—not because she lacks confidence, but because she is looking for money. My mother can spot a coin or bill faster than any other person I know. Her walking buddies are awed by her coin-finding dexterity.

When I was in Junior High it embarrassed me so much. She would literally park her car after school and come on campus to pick me up. She would walk around the courtyard and clean up on all the pennies the kids dropped. She didn’t HAVE to pick up pennies. (She REALLY didn’t.) But she enjoyed it. I remember her going home and excitedly telling my father how much money she would find each day. He would smile. I would hang my head.

To help me get over my embarrassment, my mother explained that it takes pennies to make dollars. Many times it is the poorest people who turn their nose up at pennies (or any other coin for that matter). Often they drop them just because, or leave them when they inadvertently drop them just because, or even step over them because they are too embarrassed to pick them up. That mentality keeps people poor. I paid attention and found that she was right.

15 years later I am an official Penny Picker-Upper. I find pennies everywhere—parking lots, grocery stores, sidewalks, restrooms—you name it. I am ridiculously happy when I find them too. And if I don’t pick them up, I point them out to my oldest daughter and she happily picks them up. Afterwards, I make sure I explain that she has received a blessing. It takes pennies (nickels, dimes, and quarters) to make dollars and that she should never be ashamed to add a little cash to her stash in this manner.

My advice to my children: You are beautiful. Be proud of who God created you to be. You’re nothing shy of a masterpiece. You are a “Designer’s Original…” Keep your head up, but keep those eyes glued to the ground. You never know what you’ll find.


  1. I love it. :o) I have so many Loureva penny picking moments. Because of you, I pick coins up too.

  2. I am still tramatized from that woman you call mom picking up pennies. She would stop in the middle of the street while driving with people blowing their horns with utter disgust, just to get a penny. In Jr. High, we made mom pick us up on the next street to keep her from embarrassing us. I did happen to pick up a penny in my driveway this afternoon after looking to the left and right to make sure no one saw me...wink.

  3. We pick up pennies here too. The kids love it.

    Michael Graves