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Karen

My 'baby' will be 18 tomorrow!

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Karen

My daughter is turning 18 tomorrow!

High school is behind her, so is childhood and a whole new life is ahead of her.

What does turning 18 mean for both her and her parents?

Well, she is delighted. She is now an adult and can vote and make her own decisions. Her university mail is addressed to her, even although we pay the fees, and all correspondence with the instititution is for her eyes only. She rather fancies that!

For us, her parents, the rules are changing. She owes anyone money - well, that's her problem, as she is an adult now. Her outstanding library fine can no longer be our responsibility. She breaks the law( heaven forbid!), she will be charged and tried as an adult. She can make her own decisions about life now without our permission, she tells us, as she will be EIGHTEEN!!

However, being eighteeen means that we no longer have an obligation to clothe, feed and support an adult. Especially one who does not respect our house rules. She may even have to pay rent now, and it's all legal! She is rather dismayed that her curfew time has not changed, as after all, she will be 18, but then she still is living free of charge in her room, so she cannot argue that one too much. She is upset that her parents still want to know who she is with and where she will be and that she always has her cell phone on, but she is quite happy that she can call us anytime of day or night if she needs us for a ride home.

Come September, she will be off to university res. There will be new rules and regulations for her to follow, and home may even seem a better place from time to time, but as a brand new adult, she will learn to cope with all sorts of new situations and experiences. No longer a child, not quite grown up, life may sometimes be quite bewildering and overwhelming for her, but right now she is totally drunk on the heady excitement of being eighteen and part of the real world , finally.

Come this time next year, she might find herself wishing that 17 did not go by quite so quickly, but for now , she is savouring all that she hopes 18 will bring her way.

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Linda

Happy Birthday ! Enjoy your day ! :cry:

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Gautenger

Happy Birthday

Welcome to the 'Twilight Zone', you have finished school and are independant at university. This means you can party till you drop without your parents even knowing about it, you don't have to answer to them every second of the day anymore 'cos you don't see them everyday. Then you still have to answer to them 'cos they pay your fees, etc. Enjoy this time in your life, make full use of it - party hard, but also learn hard. You will look back on it as the best time of your life - guaranteed.

Just spare a thought for your parents - it is not easy for them to get used to the idea that you are not their little baby anymore. They have been responsible for you for 18 years, old habits die hard, ease them out of it gradually by showing them they can trust you, yet you are your own person that may not always make the same decisions as them. Realise that they are always there for advice when making decisions - they have the experience you are still building up.

Mom remember what you got up to when you were that age, your kids will do the same. You have to trust them - your values had 18 years to sink in, they have. It may not show immediately, but they have, that's nature. If you can't sleep at night 'cos you are worried - drink a sleeping pill - you made it out okay, so will your kids.

Damn I miss my student days.

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Karen

Thanks guys, for the wishes and advice.

All I can say, is that I wish I was 18 all over again. My university years were the best of my life.

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Karen

One week tomorrow, my daughter, she who is newly 18, heads off to university res and a life of her own, away from her parents and brother.

I think the reality of it all is sinking in finally for all concerned. This week, we went shopping for some of the items she may need for apartment -style dorm. I discovered that Moms and teens have very different ideas about what is needed to survive outside the cocoon of the nest.

Thankfully we have a WallyMart ( Walmart!) pretty close to us, and it was there that we ventured yesterday to get ' the stuff'. Almost two hours later and almost $300 lighter in pocket, we headed home with the loot, which is now parked in the laundry, awaiting transportation to said res.

Of course, she had to have new CD/radio for all the time she needs to chill out. She found new pj's and underwear and even a new bag for her books. Oh, and a new, bright pink alarm clock, as she killed the old one, one tired morn when it would not shut up! That is all she really wanted; the rest was what Mom felt she needed!

Toilet rolls were on the top of my list. Heaven forbid my darling only daughter should ever be short of such an essential item!! Then, soap and other toiletries no self -respecting female should ever be short of and even a bottle of Advil! Cleaning sponges for the kitchen, rubber gloves, tea towels, cutlery and crockery were all already taken care of, as was the linen ( 2 sets of everthing). Two new pillows and brightly coloured Egyptian bath towels ( $5.99 each at the Bay this week!), are all neatly packed and ready to go.

So, next Sunday, picture us loading our trusty van to the limited, and taking our last born off to new pastures. I am not sure how I will feel. A bit empty and sad that my role as a mother is diminishing and that my house will be way too quiet and perhaps even too neat? Or, on the other hand, elated that I have the house to myself to do as I want? Whatever, you can bet that I will be waiting for that call to tell me how the first night away from home went off for her, and to invite her home for a home cooked meal whenver she and as yet unknown roommate need one!!

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Seanhay

Good luck Karen! Another phase we all (most of us anyway) will go through in life. I think most of us think back to our Varsity days with particular fondness. Mine was Unitas at UPE. A res. room with a view of Summerstrand and the sea...what a life. Needless to say Chemistry 1 suffered severely due to Sun, Sea and alcohol. (Oh, girls played a role too..) :D

Don't be too hard on your daughter if grades aren't quite what they should be Karen!

I've noticed that Greyhound is extensively involved in the transportation of students kit to and from the various Universities. This time of the year it gets pretty hectic for Greyhound staff. Should you ever use the service (I won't be at the Hound after September) ensure that everything is packed VERY WELL. By 'VERY WELL' I mean almost bomb proof. Old boxes as containers are strict no-no's. Shipments that survive the rigors of 'the Hound' are generally packed in plastic tubs (Rubbermaid) and a full roll of duct-tape used to ensure it's totally secure. We have everything from burst cans of beer to magazines, photo-albums, broken bottles of 'smelly mampoer type liquids' and all other unmentionables whenever the boxes burst open. I have pity for all Varsity Moms at the end of the semester. Every burst box/suitcase we have ever had consisted of dirty clothing together with the rest of the student clutter :D

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Ria

Ja Karen, oor 2 weke is ons jongste (ook 'n dogter) ook oppad Edmonton toe - sy kan nie wag nie! Wat hierdie ma se hart troos is dat haar broer reeds daar op universiteit is en hopelik 'n ogie sal hou! Ons het 'n condo daar gekoop - so die twee sal maar mekaar moet uitsorteer. Een ding, ONS huis gaan netjieser wees :D

So begin nog 'n fase in hulle ( en ook ons) lewens.

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Karen

Good luck and happiness to your daughter, Ria.

I am sure she will have a wonderful time at university and you will enjoy the new phase of your life. I am certainly planning on doing so!!

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Deonm

Hi Karen - Can you please,when time allows for it, shed some light on the cost of further education (varsity) in Canada.(In your case Edmonton)

Our eldest will finish his grade 12 in SA at the end of Oct 2004,and we are looking at the option of him attending varsity in Canada.(we hold PR Cards)and are landed immigrants.

Many thanks

Deon

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Karen

Hi Deon,

My kids are attending university here in Ontario, so I only know of the fees in this province. Other provinces may be a bit cheaper, but here is a general idea:

Tuition for an undergrad degree runs at approximately $4,000 per annum, depending on the course and number of credits taken for each semester. My son's 3 rd year BA ( hons) courses came to $3,900.

Books can cost up to $2000 ( more or less) again depending on courses.

Res fees- variable, again depending on the type of res etc. Anything from $4K to over $5K for apartment style living and then there are meal plans, which may or may not be compulsory and which can add another $1,000 plus onto the bill. Then there are the sundries which may add up to a further $1,000( perhaps less, depending on course materials etc).

So, for a kid living at home, expenses for the academic year can run at around $4,000 - $6,000. You could easily double that for one living on campus/in private digs etc.

Not a cheap venture, and a very good idea for the student to get part- time work to help with the expenses.

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Deonm

Karen-Thx a million for the info.

Comparitively speaking,the cost of studying in Toronto vs Bloemfontein is more or less the same.

Studies at the Free Sate University for BComm Acc will cost R14000 + Books+Residence Fees (R15000)+Food Coupons.We are looking at anything up to R40,000 at least, for the first year.

Regards

Deon

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aries75

Some programs in both university and college here have been deregulated (i.e. a heck of a lot more expensive than they used to be). Last time I checked, this applies to certain specialized courses (especially involving the IT field). Tuition for these can run as high as $10-$15k (e.g. the computer animation programs at Seneca College in Toronto and Sheridan in Oakville).

Conversely, trade schools (and this is a shortage of skilled tradespeople in Ontario at the moment; not sure about other provinces) are very cheap and you can "earn while you learn." On a recent news segment I saw, they profiled a program for Auto mechanics. I believe the "tuition" was only $400-something a YEAR and while training, the students could earn $11/hr. Then, once they had finished and earned their certification, that would go up to $25/hr.

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Liz

My daughter is going to study Architectural Engineering at college here in Nova Scotia...tuition is almost $2500 for the year and the books are $1000.

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Ria

Deon,

Ons seun swot BComm in Edmonton en hy gaan nou met sy derde jaar begin - onthou dis 4 jaar hier. Sy rekening vir hierdie komende jaar het hierdie week gekom en die klasgelde vir die jaar is $5030. Verlede jaar was sy boeke in die omgewing van $600/700. Het gedink dit gaan baie meer wees :D Ons het 'n condo gekoop omdat ons van vanjaar af twee kinders daar gaan hê - kry dan darem eendag weer iets terug wanneer mens verkoop! Die kinders moet vir hulle eie kos (dis nou wanneer die vrieskas leegraak :o ) en wat ookal sorg. Ons betaal die klasgelde, boeke en vervoer. Hulle werk gedurende die somervakansie want dis 4 maande lank. So leer hulle ook om maar na hulle geld te kyk. Die sussie het ook al baie mooi uitgevra hoeveel hy per jaar gebruik :badidea: want sy wil nog volgende jaar SA toe gaan vir 'n vakansie - moet haar geldsake mooi beplan.

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Deonm

Dankie vir die waardevolle inligting.

Thanks for the info.

Aries,thx for pointing out the other option.

I once read an article compiled by the British Colombia Business Council with the title "The Third Option:The first choice.

It deals with rewarding careers versus non-university pathways.

I strongly recommend that parents and students read this article,as it will give you a better understanding of what skills future employees will need to market themselves,should they wish to work in the formal sector.

You can download the pdf file from www.bcbc.com

Cheers from a sunny South Africa :badidea:

Deon

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Karen

Yesterday was the BIG day!

In a downpour, we left the house, our van loaded to the max, and off we took one rather apprehensive but very excited student to her new home for the rest of the academic year. Everything bar the kitchen sink seemed to go along with her!

Arrival at the res, a brand new building, found us in line with a dozen other cars, all waiting to offload. A few very helpful frosh bosses and students helped us, as we all carted her bags and boxes to the elevator and then to the room. Her new roommate had not yet arrived, but a friend of my daughter's had come to help her 'unpack', so once the computer was set up on the desk, we were dismissed with a quick peck on the cheek and told not to call too often!! Dad did call to tell her not to forget to collect her meal plan card, and was told that the roommate, a girl from England, who is doing her course , was moving in and that she seemed really nice.

Although the suite is not much to write home about, it is more than adequate for a student. You walk into a kitchen area, complete with fridge and stove and small table with two stools. A bathroom is to the right, and the two bedrooms go off the kitchen. The bedrooms are basic - a bed, pine cube, chest of drawers, closet for hanging, a large desk,chair and a phone. Drapes were late in arriving, and should get there sometime this week. Nevertheless,my daughter was thrilled with it all - finally her very own space and she loved it at first sight.

The frosh week is filled with fun and activities and academic orientation.Bbq's, a trip to a Supersaver Store and Ikea, sex with Dr Sue and a host of other outings and events fill the calendar she was given upon arrival, together with a lanyard filled with keys and entry cards. I am sure that sleep ( or not much of it) is not a priority and these kids are going to be pretty exhausted when classes start on Sept 8, but they are young and the young always cope.

It all seems to be fun and exciting and I certainly wished that I was 18 again for a brief time yesterday!

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Liz

Karen, I'm sure your daughter will enjoy her new 'home away from home'. I'm sure the first few days will feel quite wierd for you, not having her around...??

Edited by Liz

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Karen

Liz,

The house is VERY quiet, almost blissfully so right now, and by next week, I too will be busy again, so I am just enjoying the solitude for now.

My son is a frosh boss and is also living on campus this week, but we will get him back by the weekend, although he lives in my basement, and comes and goes as he pleases.

Daughter got me on msn chat today - seems very bucked still and she and the roommate are getting on very well and seem to like one another, which is really good.

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Cathy K

Go on, admit it Karen! Dad was very quiet on the way home and you suddenly developed an allergy that caused a little bit of sniffing. They grow up far too quickly!

This year we're starting with skating and ballet lessons. She's already adept at using her own little mouse with the computer and she's learning all about shapes and colours.

But we know, three becomes thirteen almost without noticing. Eighteen follows hopelessly too soon. I can still remember the day we left her mom at "Jasmyn" in Pretoria, just seventeen and determined to conquer the world.

Cathy K.

Edited by Die Kotzé's

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Karen

Life is sure different without your kids around!

My daughter, she who loves res life two days into it, have taken to msn- ing one another and are having good chats , even better than our face- to face ones generally are.

So, she really likes Maddy, her new roommate, who hails from Bath, UK. They seem to have much in common, and Ben and Vince from the next room, have already been a- visiting! She is handing out resumes to get an on campus job and is getting used to buying her own groceries in between all the fun events organised. She is, right now, one really happy camper and I hope this delight in all around her will carry on.

As for the empty nesters, well, we are slowly getting used to it and it is rather nice to not have to consider the kids in all we do. Last night, we ate at Made in Japan and wondered around the mall, we chat more and watch TV without interruption and the phone is totally ours! I think we are getting to like OUR independence, which might be difficult to surrender once the kids are home for the holidays again!

Right now, it seems to me, that there is life after school ends, and it is looking pretty good!

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Karen

My daughter has been in res for 10 days now, and we have all adapted very well indeed.

She seems to really be enjoying the experience of living alone and today, she starts her first lectures, so will be very busy from now on.

My son is home again. He was a 'Frosh Boss" and so for the past 10 days, he was also resident in a dorm. This was his second year of fun and games, and he enjoyed it all very much. However, his one 'complaint' this year, was that so many of the girls smoke like chimneys. He finds it most unappealing and would not ask anyone out who has the habit.

Why do so many youngsters in Canada have the need to smoke? Surely, there must be better ways to spend money, rather than letting it all go up in a puff of unhealthy smoke?

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aries75

Did he specify exactly *what* they were smoking? B)

Though according to this article from healthyontario.com, smoking rates amongst teens are actually down:

The smoking rate among teenagers dropped below that of the general population for the first time in almost 10 years, according to the latest results from Canadian Tobacco Use Monitoring Survey (CTUMS).

Though as to why they'd do it to begin with, it's just as addictive as heroin--therefore, once you start, it can be brutally difficult to stop (especially when you add all the extra stress of school, part-time jobs, etc.)

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