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Living

Here’s the Perfect High School Graduation Gift

The fun 'ABC's of Adulthood' gives parents an opportunity to offer wisdom


Your son or daughter graduating  from high school is a major milestone.  But there is a huge transition that takes place as he or she prepares to head off to college and become an adult. Sometimes it might be hard to find the most helpful advice. Fortunately, now there’s a new book to make it easier.

The ABCs of Adulthood Book EmbedThe bloggers at the Grown and Flown website recently recommended writer and photographer Deborah Copaken’s newest book, The ABC’s of Adulthood: An Alphabet of Life Lessons. Next Avenue thinks it’s a winner, too. This book is a helpful guidebook for off-to-college kids, providing them with wisdom — with a side of wit.

“This is the book I wish I could have read when I went to college. Kids are in charge of their lives but have no instruction manual. When my son was a senior, there was no way I could download all the information to him before he left for college,” Copaken said. So she decided to write a sort of how-to book to give her son the wisdom he needed.

According to the Grown and Flown article, Copaken was unable to finish the guide before her son left for college, but she picked it up again when her daughter prepared for her college experience.

Each page has a surprise, photo or drawing of a particular letter, followed by thought-provoking insight and encouragement. One of Grown and Flown bloggers’ favorite examples is from the page titled “M is for Mortgage.” It says: “You are not your stuff, you are not your money, you are not your job, you are not your home, and you are most certainly not your mortgage. Ownership is a collective illusion, a social agreement, and the people with the most stuff at the end of life do not win. They just disappear. Like all of us.”

To add a touch of individualism, Copaken provides space at the bottom of the pages so you can write down some of your own personal thoughts associated with the letter.

By Amy Knapp
Amy was formerly the associate digital editor for Next Avenue. She previously was an editor for InnoVision Health Media's consumer publicationNatural Solutions Magazine.  
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