As promised today I’m going to talk about open houses. I thought they were just something that realtors did on Sundays when they were selling your house. It turns out there is a different definition as well. The term refers to a sort of Graduation Party done in the spring of your child’s senior year where you put pictures of your child (I assume from the senior pictures) around your house and then set up a tent with folding tables and chairs in your yard. You have it catered or else buy a ton of food and prepare it yourself. Then you invite relatives, friends and anyone you can get a gift from to come to the open house. I went to a few of these when I was dating my wife. There are lots of people eating potato salad, baked beans, cole slaw, fruit salad, fried chicken and a giant graduation cake. You walk through every bit of the home almost as if you were looking to buy it and you look through everything this person has done throughout their academic and extracurricular lives. The parents make everyone feel at home and you bring a gift that is set on a large table. The gifts are either money or else items that will be of use in college. It turns out I will likely be having such a party next year. Once again, the whole concept is strange to me. This time, at least, I have seen it in action and know what it is about as opposed to the senior pictures. I’m not going to sit here and say the open house is a bad thing. It just seems like a pain in the neck. You have to make your home spotless so it can be messed up by strangers rummaging through your belongings. Then you must feed and entertain these people. It’s a good deal for the senior and I suppose it makes them feel important or appreciated. The whole thing is almost like a business venture in a way. You have to receive more gifts and money than you spent to make it worthwhile. Otherwise you would be better off just giving a chunk of money to your child and calling it good. I never saw anything like this over in Canada. My parents were proud of me when I graduated. My friend’s parents were proud of them as well. But there was no show put on to highlight our graduation. I suppose there was a time when graduating high school was a major achievement. Now it is something expected. Do you not assume that people have graduated high school? I will be very proud of my daughter when she graduates. I just don’t understand the open house part.
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