Dear Auntie Linda, I bake and decorate cakes out of my home for a living. On occasion, I have given a cake as a gift to a very close friend. I am constantly asked for my work as a favor by family, friends, and acquaintances, who seem to think my work is a hobby, not my livelihood. They often say, “I’ll pay for your supplies, as though that’s a big deal.” My labor, time, and creativity are my biggest investment. I doubt these people would consider asking a factory worker, social worker, or doctor for a few hours of their time and expertise. Why on earth would they think it is okay to ask a baker, hairdresser, baby sitter, seamstress, or any other person who has a home business to sacrifice income? Fed up with Moochers
Dear Fed up, You are right. People do seem to think home workers aren’t seriously in need of and entitled every penny hey earn. They would likely be mortally offended should you suggest they donate several hours of pay on the occasion of your son’s birthday, wedding, graduation, Bar Mitzvah, especially if you weren’t even particularly close. Good you can say, “here’s my price list.” Auntie Linda.
Dear Auntie Linda, My sister Debbie’s six year-old-daughter, Becky, is an “all star.” She dances, sings, and keeps us giggling. I love her and am proud of her but would love for my sister to enjoy my “stars” accomplishments. Julie has Down’s Syndrome. A sweeter and more loving child was never born. Her first steps were late, but triumphant. and her smiles light up our lives. Becky totally adores Julie. The girls are inseparable when they have the chance to play together. My sister is so pained and regretful at Julie’s Down’s Syndrome that she is unable to share the joy she brings to our lives. I wish Debbie could stop needlessly grieving on our behalves and share our happiness. Proud Mama
Dear Proud Mama, Perhaps if Debbie had time alone with Julie, she would get to know her and share your love and pride. Until I worked with children with Down’s Syndrome, I never appreciated how loving they are. Maybe you can manage some alone time for them while you and Becky share some time. Congratulations on your beautiful daughter. Auntie Linda