Mon Mar 21 2011
Photographer: Virginia Rollison
Four years ago, Phineas Alexander, now 11, started a cookie and lemonade stand. "The drinks sold okay, but the cookies did really well," says Phineas, who has finally perfected the brown sugar--to--chocolate chip ratio. Over time, the one-kid operation blossomed into a family affair. Phineas makes the batter on Fridays in his (er, his parents') Fort Greene kitchen, and right before selling them on Saturday mornings at Fort Greene Park Greenmarket, he enlists the help of siblings Benny, 8, Frida, 5, and Ava, 3, to bake and taste the cookies. "We have to test them so we know they're not bad," reasons Benny.
Each of the siblings has an assigned role when they head to the market. Benny distributes the cookies to customers; Frida serves as the barker, crying "25 cents for a cookie!"; Ava holds the money cup; and Phineas supervises the whole process. With hand-drawn signs taped to their backs, the kids walk around the market until everyone who wants a cookie has had a chance to buy one.
Back at home, the kids get a lesson in math. After setting aside 10 percent for charity, they divvy up the rest of their profits equally. The siblings save their money to buy Christmas presents for each other or, in Phineas's case, "to invest in stocks." —Lindsey Thomas
Follow their lead!
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