Posts Tagged ‘teens’

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An Ode to my Kids, and Perhaps to Yours

August 10, 2016

 

Saying goodbye is hard to do. No matter how much you prepare yourself—no one can truly anticipate being so damn sad. Grief flows its own river.

Like many, I’ve had significant loss—in addition to my grandparents; death took my two aunts, my dad, two brothers, and a number of pets. I know how grief works. It grabs you, swallows you, spits you out and repeats until you crash and begin to finally begin again.

This time, my loss is not so permanent; thus not so powerful. That said, good-byes are painful, and change is scary. My oldest child leaves for the University of Colorado this month, altering our family life forever. Ellie will be back, probably with a load of dirty laundry and a need for home cookin’, but she’s gone. Her place at the table will be vacant, her bed empty, and her siblings lonely (okay, maybe not all the time). The happy news? She’s embarking on a grand adventure, starring herself. It won’t be long before my other two leave, too. I’m beyond proud of the people they’ve become, and yet, still sad.

To help me process and understand the tremendous change, I’ve written an ode to my kids; things I hope I’ve taught them. I’m sure I’ve messed up, forgotten things, and have probably failed in some capacity. But that’s parenting. At least I made a list, outlining 25 things I want them to know. Who knows if they’ll heed the advice or grasp the full meaning, I can hope.

  1. I wish you a life of love and know that you are always loved by me
  2. Find good company
  3. Laugh often
  4. Eat lots of fresh vegetables and don’t drink too much alcohol
  5. Call me when you are hurting or happy- I’ll be there
  6. Remember to breathe deeply and that it is enough
  7. Brush your teeth
  8. Be honest- with yourself and with others
  9. Know that life isn’t fair, but it is what you make it
  10. Eat breakfast (more than a Starbucks’ latte, please)
  11. Work hard
  12. Pay your debts (better yet, don’t have any)
  13. Don’t post inappropriate pictures online
  14. Take good risks (don’t jump out a window, but do try a new activity/class)
  15. Read for fun
  16. Know that it is okay to let go
  17. Don’t hold onto anger, guilt, or resentment
  18. See a doctor, an acupuncturist, or a good healer when you are sick
  19. Take your vitamins
  20. Don’t leave a friend alone at a party
  21. Don’t stay alone at a party
  22. Trust your intuition
  23. Be kind
  24. Meet many diverse people
  25. Know this: I am forever grateful for the time we’ve lived together, arguments and all

 

 

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Calling All Teens

January 13, 2012

Want to build your portfolio? See your name published? If you’re a teen, now’s your chance. I’ll be posting a monthly (or perhaps, bi-monthly) book review by a teen reader. It could be you! Send me an email via this blog with your review. Make sure you edit your work. I will not. Use your voice and style, but remember I will not accept poor grammar, misspellings, etc.. If you’re not a teen and reading this blog, but might know a teen who’d be interested, then pass it on. Get reading and writing teens!

 

Be sure to include:

-the basics: genre, author, title, page count

-the issue/problem/main concern? (don’t give away the ending)

-a main character or two

-where does it take place

-did you like it, why or why not?

-send a jpg of the book cover

 

Have fun!

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Anne Morrow Lindbergh Texts

February 22, 2009

Good communication is stimulating as black coffee, and just as hard to sleep after.

-Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Does good communication include texting? Because if it does, my soon-to-be teenage daughter will win the communicator-of-the-year award.

Last month’s total? Eighteen hundred. It’s true. You read that right. Eighteen hundred texts…in one month. No more allowance for her. She’ll be shoveling the drive for a long time to come.

To her credit, it was her first month of texting, and she had no idea the phone company charged for both in-coming and out-going texts. Neither did her parents. Feel free to slap us around, but we knew nothing about texting and naively assumed neither did she. We gave her a phone strictly to be used for communication with her parents. Right. Slap me again.

So what does a pre-teen text 1800 times? I checked.

“hi”

“hi”

“what’s up”

“nothing”

“how RU”

“good. U?”

“good”

“what chairlift RU on”

“merc”

“number?”

“57”

“where’s Pete”

“who cares”

“M likes him”

“omg”

“g2g”

This stimulating conversation racked up 16 texts, not one for free.

Why not just call and talk? “Because then people hear you,” she answers.

In the world of cyber space, we’ve become a growing society of no talk. We can email. We can facebook. We can text. We can blog. We can do everything but talk. It’s easier, says the cyber generation.

A friend of mine told me her high schooler texts so he doesn’t have to have a conversation with a girl. Makes sense. Who wants to be told, OMG to his face?

While texting may eliminate a stutter and sweaty palms, where will it lead us? Will we live in voiceless relationships? While it might be nice not to hear my husband ask me where the car keys are, do I really want a relationship of silence? Well okay, maybe some days.

Not only is the texting price tag absurd, but 1800 texts a month takes time. It eliminates the opportunity to talk. It causes carpel tunnel. Texting while driving? Don’t get me started.

A good conversation for me, is indeed, a lot like black coffee. It makes me think. It makes me laugh and sometimes cry. Conversations teach and probe and make us reflect. I realize teenagers are a breed of their own, but I hope texting is a short-lived phase for our kids.

Even if she falls on her face, I hope my daughter can learn to talk to a boy. Or a girl. Or her parents. OMG.