You're an Uncool College Parent If...

  1. #1. You wish your kid responded to your text.
  2. #2. You know they're over 18; and you still care.
  3. Read the rest...

Does Sending Your Kids Off To College Get Easier Each Successive Year?

Somebody asked me the other day if it gets easier to say goodbye to your college kids in the fall when they are a sophomore, junior or senior in college. I had to stop for a minute and think.  For me the answer is a qualified, yes.

A lot of the anxiety that I experienced when each of my kids first went to school was tied to my child and the unknowns with respect to each of them. Would they like their roommate? Would they be able to handle the course load? Would they like their courses?  Would they make good friends? How smoothly would move in day go? And the list of this worried parent went on and on.

After freshman year a lot of those issues are no longer applicable. The fact that each of my children has proved that they can indeed handle the college work load, get great grades, make new friends, take care of themselves, makes it easier to send them off to school. The anxiety that I first felt on letting them go has abated.

Another part of my nervousness about sending them away to school had to do with the changing dynamics of our family and me. When my oldest went off I worried about how the house would feel with one less person in it. Would it feel funny to have three of us in the house instead of four? How would it feel around the dinner table? Then when my youngest went off I worried about being an empty nester. How would I fill my time since so much of it was taken up with my kid’s schedules? And of course, how would I deal with the knowledge that I was moving into a new stage of life and my concept of family would have to change.
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As Parents We Are Always Concerned With Safety, But Are Our Kids?

We’re thinking about our kids’ safety, but are they?

Start a dialogue and keep the lines of communication open. Make a plan to stay in touch with your child and stick to it. Share these tips with your kids. There’s a lot here. Maybe one at a time?! Your kids might roll their eyes, but they will hear:

  • Be aware of your surroundings. Become familiar with the campus and map out safe ways to walk to and from your classes. Walk in lit areas that are frequently traveled.
  • Always walk with at least one other person that you know. Groups are better but are not always practical. If you have to walk alone somewhere, make sure someone is aware of where you will be walking and when you should arrive at your destination.

Personally, I encourage my daughter to call me on her cell phone when she is walking somewhere alone. We talk until she arrives at her destination safely. Even though she is on the phone I encourage her to stay aware of her surroundings.
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Laundry

Teaching our college students how to do laundry

Laundry! That word conjures up real drudgery for some. Most of our kids probably have little or no experience with it and now that they are going off to college we better teach them fast. Hopefully you took the time during the summer when laundry is probably at an all time high, with all the towels and bathing suits, to let them do a load or two before they are off on their own.

Whether to use hot or cold water, use one rinse or two and how to separate dark from light clothing. Make sure you get them a good laundry bag or basket so that they can carry their clothing and the detergent easily to the laundry room in the dorm. I suggested that my kids use the fabric softener sheets, because it seemed easier than having to add the fabric softener into the washing machine and the machines in the dorm may not have a separate receptacle for it. And now they have those pods which makes it even easier and takes the guesswork out of measuring the detergent.
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