Monday, June 18, 2012

Things My Father Taught Me

Happy Father's Day!

In honor of the holiday, I'm going to add to my "Things My Mother Was Right About" and share some things I learned from my daddy. My parents are pretty different people and divorced when I was young, so when I sat down to write this I thought these lists would be radically different. I was surprised to see that there are actually quite a few overlaps. Who knew?!

1. Go to the theater! Not only is it a wonderful way to spend an evening, but it can be incredibly political and thought provoking.

2. Related to number one, but so central to our relationship that it merits a separate number: Learn the words to every song from every musical. They're beautiful and catchy and fun to sing.

3. Horseback riding is the best sport ever. It will teach you patience, discipline, help you work out any trust issues, help you learn to work through yours fears, give your legs and abs a great workout, and give you beautiful posture.

4. Horses are beautiful creatures. Relish the smell of your tack and horse sweat. Cherish the feeling of jumping a new jump and galloping across a pasture. Spend as much time as you can at the barn.

5. Ballet and dance lessons are good for you. They are a fantastic creative outlet and a great way to get some exercise, they will teach you discipline, they will come in handy when you're older and want to go dancing, and they will (like horseback riding) give you good posture.

6. Work hard at your job.

7. Network.

8. Go to a college that is far away from home, a college that is so far away its impossible to do laundry at home or drop by your parents' house for dinner. 

9. Go to a small, liberal arts college where you will be in small classes and constantly challenged.Use your education to learn how to think, not what to think. Try and be well-rounded academically.

10. Go to Wellesley.

11. Travel often. Visit new places. Go on adventures. Try and vacation outside of the United States.

12. Get good grades. Work hard in school.

13. Enjoy where you are in life. Don't rush growing up.

14. Watch and read the news every day.

15. Never eat ground beef.

16. Take your kids on vacation often, even when they're young. Don't wait until they're older, but make it a central part of their childhood and upbringing.

17. Advocate for yourself. Don't wait for other people to do it for you.

18.  Enjoy good food. Indulge every once in awhile.

19. Set your own limits. But every once in awhile, face your fears.

20. Live your own life. Do what makes you happy.


  1. This is some pretty great advice. Sounds like you had a rad dad. :)