Were you given an allowance as a child? My earliest memory of an allowance was $.35 every two weeks, and I had to put $.20 of that in the donation box, so that left me a whopping $.15 that I could spend on candy, etc., for two weeks. I was recently reminiscing with a younger friend who has four children, ages 12 to 20. He told me he didn’t think his kids even knew money came that small! Hahaha!!!

   At age 8 my folks planned our first trip from Oregon to Iowa to see family. My brother and I decided we wanted to earn some “folding” money. Oregon was full of truck farms, so we had our choice of picking strawberries, green beans, or a berry known as a black cap, not to be confused with blackberries or black raspberries. Mom decided on black caps because it was grown on a bush, hence no stooping over, plus they were not tasty so we wouldn’t munch our way through the profits. FYI- black caps were used for dye for meat packing plants to stamp on their meat packages.

   Every morning, we’d go early to beat the heat. We’d tie a rope around our waist, hang a bucket on it, and go to town picking our berries, earning that folding money. I’d earn $2.50, Dan would earn $5.00, and mom would earn $10.00. Then, we were done for that day. We continued for a couple of weeks until I had earned $27.00!!! Boy! Did I feel rich?!?!

   The time came for us to take our trip back to Iowa. We headed out after dad got off work one evening and drove as far as a friend’s house in Bend, OR. We would spend the night there and then would head out early the next day so we could make it in two long days. We slept on a mattress on the living room floor, and I had my new little purse right next to my pillow. You know, the one with my hard-earned $27.00 in it. I remember it well- black patent leather, 3 compartments with a strap, and a snap. We got up at the crack of dawn, sleepily made our way to the car, and fell back asleep until we stopped for breakfast. I started to reach for my purse, but it was nowhere to be found. I tore that back seat apart, but nope. It just wasn’t there. I had left it right next to my pillow!

   We arrived in Iowa, but I was penniless. Not for long, though. My brother split his earnings with me!! That was a pretty good big brother, wouldn’t you say?? He must’ve earned about $50.00 because he gave me $25.00! I was able to enjoy my trip (so could he because I wasn’t constantly crying about it anymore!).


   Yesterday, while I was driving to work early in the morning, my thoughts returned to this early morning adventure of my childhood. I was using the Belle Aroma® FlashScent® USB Aromatherapy Diffuser with Belle Aroma® Organic Sweet Orange Essential Oil. It was such a delightful scent that was a real pick-me-up. What I love about this FlashScent diffuser is I can change out the little pad and oils to match whatever mood I’m in or trying to achieve. It has an automatic shut-off feature, so there’s no danger of overheating. There’s an LED indicator light so you can customize your aromatherapy experience: green for low or red for high heat. It comes with Organic Lavender or Organic Peppermint essential oils, but with an extra set of pads, you can use others. This Belle Aroma® FlashScent USB diffuser has a permanent place in my car!

Lori Heer for Belle Aroma® Brand

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