Many of us have spent lots of time on college tours recently. I’m not going to get into the insanity of the entire college selection process, I’ll let you experience and enjoy that on your own.
But before I talk about the important stuff like what to wear, I need to get one thing off my chest. Can admissions people please train their adorable, enthusiastic tour guides to replace the word “free” with the phrase “included with your tuition.” If one more perky tour guide exclaims with pride that things like printing, laundry and shuttle rides are FREE, I think my head may explode.
If you’re in this fun stage or approaching it, I highly recommend you visit and subscribe to the blog, Grown and Flown. It’s by far the best site for the most salient, and entertaining information and support for all things teen, college, and “empty-ing nest” related. Their tagline is “parenting never ends”.. Ain’t that the truth. www..grownandflown.com.
Now, on to the truly important topic here:
WHAT TO WEAR ON COLLEGE TOURS WITH YOUR 16-18 YEAR OLD (easily embarrassed) CHILD
- DO wear comfortable shoes. Hands down, the most important tip. My go-to are my favorite Classic Addidas. or my slip-on Vans. Low heeled comfortable booties or your favorite flats are good choices as well. Needless to say….not a time to break out the heels.
- DO plan on weather changes. Especially if you’re traveling, wear layers, bring an umbrella, and have a neutral jacket on hand. An olive field jacket is on trend without being trendy…and you’ll blend in with the scenery which is your goal. Another go-to is my all-time favorite denim jacket – it’s just cool enough without screaming “I’m 50 years old and want to look like a teenager.”
- On that note: DON’T dress for fashion. Yes, you can be fashionable, but trust me, your kid doesn’t want you to draw undo attention to yourself. Despite the fact that you raised and nurtured this child for 18 years (and are footing the bill) it’s not about you. 😉
- DON’T expect your almost adult child to carry their own sh*t. Seriously though, carry a light-weight tote to hold your sunglasses, umbrella, an extra layer — AND all the glossy hand out materials (that must cost these schools a fortune, and no one ever looks at again because it’s all available on-line).
- DO bring a scarf to add some personality to your neutral look. Scarves serve multiple purposes including adding some warmth, keeping your head dry in unexpected downpours, and covering the stain created when you dump your coffee on yourself while driving to said tour. A long necklace you can throw over your head also adds personality to a basic tee (and a tassel gives you something to fiddle with to remind yourself to keep your mouth shut). I have this one and and also love this one.
- DO enjoy this special time with your “child” as they are held captive with no easy escape plan. It can be a stressful time filled with conflict and tough decisions, but it can and should also be a wonderful chance for some rare one-on-one time.
- FINAL TIP: Stuff a “free” cookie in your mouth when you feel tempted to express a preference for a particular school. Learn this phrase and repeat it over and over when you’re tempted to give your opinion: “What did YOU think??” At first you’ll be met with a blank stare or something meaningless like, “it was nice”. But eventually (we pray) they will figure it out and end up somewhere right for them. And then (we pray) they’ll get a job, and not live in the basement. For too long.
Have fun and #justgetdressed😉