For the past two summers, we have offered Joel rewards for reading x number of books.
This past summer he wanted Blendy Pens as seen on TV. They were cheaper at Target, but he agreed to read 50 books to earn them. The summer before, he read 50 (shorter, but age appropritate) books, to get a Star Wars sticker book ($12.00 or so at Barnes & Noble).
He could read alone, to, or with someone, but he had to do the reading. We kept a list. It was so gratifying to all of us. His sister, Sarah, was especially elated. I remember her words before Joel was born: "I'm going to make him a reader. I won't let him ruin his mind with dumb video games." (To which his brothers voiced their values: What's wrong with video games?") Funny thing now is, when his brothers catch him gaming, they say, "Hey, Joel, don't you have anything better to do than that? Like read or play football or something?")
At any rate, Joel found something at a store not long ago that he wanted instantly. I said no, also instantly. I don't remember what it was (something Star Warsy, I'm sure). But I do remember his next question: "Well, if I can't have it now, can I read for it and get it later?"
Big hugs all around, a smacker on the soft, soft cheeks, and a "Sure, you can!" sealed the deal. I need to go ask him what it was. I'm sure he'll remember.