My kids are young, but they are being taught at an early age how to use the computer. They know how to use the iPad, an iPod, and so the computer was always something they were interested in. Since Mommy is a blogger, and owns her own home-based business, plus does ALL of the shopping online – the kids want to be like Mommy. Who can blame them, right? I’m fabulous……..(in my own mind, I am.)
I’ve been pretty hesitant to allow them to hop onto the computer to “buy” things. I show them on the laptop some of the kid programs out there for them, but I haven’t really given them the chance to “buy” online. This has caused a bit of hurt feelings on the part of Little Miss. She wants to buy gifts, like Mommy does, online.
What’s a Mama Bear to do? Go to VirtualPiggy.com, that’s what. It’s a place where Little Miss can sign on, shop, and I control it all from my parent account. Pretty sweet.
Little Miss has her own sign on information, and on her “child” dashboard, she knows what she can spend, and it has a few merchants to shop at. The child dashboard is basically set up by me. I control how much she can spend, how often she can shop, and I have final approval of everything she “buys.” SWEET. And yes, it feeds the control freak side of me!
Here’s the main issues with the site:
- Little Miss didn’t love the selection of merchants. There wasn’t many on there, and since I only allowed her a $20 limit, there wasn’t much to choose from as far as product. Kind of a bummer, but she is excited to try again after the holidays. Perhaps with a bit of her own “holiday money.”
- I’m not a fan of having to have my credit card information stored in the system. I get why they want it, obviously, but I don’t like that it’s in there. This will probably cause me to not use the site after she finds the “one” thing she wishes to purchase. I had to link either a credit card, or my PayPal account to the site. Neither was a great idea in my opinion, doesn’t matter to me if it has highest security available (PCI-DSS Level 1.) I never keep my payment information in ANY web based site. It’s just how I roll.
If they can find a way to make it work without me having the information IN the website’s files, I’d be more willing to have Little Miss use the site all the time. She has a lot of birthday parties she attends, along with teachers she likes to buy special things for during the holidays. I’d love to have her do her own searching, and make her purchases. It would be lovely! One day…….hopefully in the next “upgrade” of their site? We will see.
However, if you’ve got no issues with having your information secured on their site, it’s the best site I’ve found in a long time. Little Miss loved having the independence, and she actually looked at the prices, because she knew she had a limit. I saw her doing the math in her head, on her fingers, and finally asked for paper and pencil. So cute.
Definitely recommend checking it out, because it’s totally amazing to watch your child making amazingly great choices when it comes to money, budgets, and generosity! Plus, it’s a free service. SO that’s always a good deal to me!