05 December 2011

regret me not

Usually, I drive my kids to school each morning. It's a 20-minute or so drive one way. We shoot to leave the house by 7:10 a.m. but lately we've been running 10 minutes late.
Not late to school, mind you. Just later than they'd like to get to school.
In the car are 5 of my kids and 2 kids of a friend of ours that we carpool with.
7 kids.
Trapped in my Odyssey.
Each seat is full (IE: they are close enough to touch each other).

And I love it.
I love it because they are trapped. I can talk to them about ANYTHING and they can't run away. Can't slam the door. They are my captive audience.
So, I use this time to engage them in stimulating conversation. Otherwise known as the Topic of the Day.
They know it's coming and they present the usual and customary eye roll and/or groan. Lately they have also tried the "I'm wearing headphones and can't hear a word you're saying so I don't have to participate" game. But it's not working.

On the drive to school this morning, the TotD (Topic of the Day) was this:

"If you were to die today, would you have any regrets? Anything you regretted not doing? Anything you regretted doing? Anything you regretted saying?
Kind of a daunting question for people under 20. But it was fun to hear their answers.
  • 17 year old: not getting to have a family (getting married and having kids)
  • 14 year old: not travelling to Canada
  • 14 year old: not travelling to Europe
  • 13 year old: not travelling to Europe
  • 12 year old: not travelling to Italy
What would you regret? Why haven't you done this regret? Post your comments below!

19 April 2011

you can't take it with you

My first-born took a two-week trip to Europe. She's 19 and it was her senior class trip. Yeah, I know. Europe. My senior trip was to the mall. No, really - I think it was to Daytona Beach. The night before she was scheduled to leave she stayed up all night packing. I was worried she wouldn't pack "right." Worried she'd forget something. Worried she'd pack the wrong something. Worried she'd pack too much something. Just worried.

She did manage to pack, though. Without any help from me, ether. How'd she do? I'll let you read for yourself ...

"When I attempted packing two weeks into a single suitcase, I experienced firsthand the legendary crisis of separating "wants" and "needs".

The more I "needed", the more I'd be carrying, which would make traveling awkward and inconvenient. I might miss part of the experience.

I was forced to abandon luxury and discard many items that make me comfortable and/or happy.

In addition to my hairdryer and Bop-It Extreme, I have left behind my former self.

I will not need her for this adventure- her problems and opinions, prejudices and fears, the way that she has always seen the world

To bring those things would be too much to carry. It would be awkward and inconvenient. I might miss part of the experience.

Instead, I left some empty room in my suitcase.

They always say that you come back with something new."