When I ask my daughter what book she wants to read, she hands me “The Places You Will Go” by Dr. Seuss. We have read this book many, many times. She really enjoys it and I think of something new I want to teach her every time I read it. Don’t take your self too serious in ever situation. Always be kind to others. Travel. Never be ashamed of your interests. I know a few adults that should read this book. It’s an excellent reminder that life happens and it doesn’t always go the way you though it would, or think it should.
A formal education is not cheap. It’s also not for everyone.
As a kid, when someone asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up, my reply was that I wanted to be a teacher. I didn’t know anything else. Once I graduated, I started working on my bachelor of arts degree, straight out of high school.
In my option, all this degree told a possible future employer was how good I was at writing papers and reports. I didn’t feel it would really benefit me to teach elementary school kids.
I completed three an half years of University before I ran out of money. All I had left was my last semester. I didn’t take out any student loans. I lived at home, went to school full time and worked 30 hours a week to pay for school (so I didn’t have to take out loans). When I ran out of money for school, I figure I will work the rest of the year and go back to school in September to finish. I never went back. I started living life. I also realized I had no desire to become a teacher, but I also didn’t know what I wanted to do when ‘I grew up’. While looking for a job, I came to the scary realization that I didn’t know anything about what I wanted to do, what made me happy?! I hadn’t experienced much. I didn’t know any other cultures but my own. Maybe this was a blessing in disguise.
School was expensive. Between the tuition, books, supplies for projects, transportation, etc. The cost was ridiculous. I only started saving for this expensive adventure two years before attending University. Working part time while finish high school on a minimum wage wasn’t exactly going to pay for even one year of school, but it was a start.
When our daughter was born, we opened up a bank account for her and set up an Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP). For those of you who don’t know what an RESP is, it’s a savings account for our kids post-secondary education – if they so choose to go. The Government will contribute 20% on the first $2,500 in annual contributions. After that I believe it’s up to $500 a year (I am by no means an expert on this, this is just my understanding of this whole process. If you want to find out more, contact your bank). Now, there are obviously rules and caps on the amount of money the Government will give you, but the Government is giving us free money for our kids education, I’m not going to say no!
Now, if my kids choose not to go to school, I give the Government there money back that they contributed and my kids can use the money for something else, like a down payment on a house or other less formal forms of education. I want my kids to have to opportunity to go to school (if they so choose) and not have to worry about the finances of it. I want them to focus and have the freedom to work hard and succeed.
If my kids come to me and say, I want to travel the world before I decide what I want to do with my life, I will fully support that. Or if they tell me they want to work there current job because they don’t know what they want to do. I will fully support that. If they tell me they want to live at home rent free, no job and eat all my food, yea much, much less supportive of that – I didn’t raise freeloaders. See I do have limits.
I wish I had traveled more when I had the freedom and disposable income to do so.
Time will tell what my kids will decide. I will do my best to support what ever choice(s) they make.
As I am writing this, my daughter is giving me a ‘check up’, crap, how expensive is medical school?
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