I grew up in Hunter N.D., a small town rural to Fargo, where I live today. My high school graduating class had 11 students, 10 of whom were boys. Imagine that Prom for a few minutes.
Although we lived in town, my brother and I spent every summer mowing lawns and working on a farm. We had opportunities to play summer baseball and be active outside of employment, but the reality was my brother and I preferred putting in the hours working and saving for ATVs and first cars.
My family managed okay financially, but did not have considerable excess. It never struck me until I was an adult that we spent considerable “family time” improving our home, tackling projects and generally just being together, albeit not running and going to do activities. My brother and I had access to all the sports/music/drama activities a small town could offer, many of which we enjoyed.
In comparison, my kids have been active in sports and activities since they were 3; they know what it means to have a frequent flyer number, and they have the latest Apple gadgets at ages 7 and 8.
I often question if my kids will be able to learn all the same “life lessons” that our small town thankfully taught us. As a parent, and someone who is very aware of this in their life, this duty is certainly “on me” and I accept that. The reality, though, is your environment has a lot to do with building your framework and helping to create the person inside.
So if you see my kids going door to door to shovel snow, mow grass or simply to check on the neighbors like mom once told us… don’t worry. I’m simply bringing the small town back and helping to build their framework.
Small towns rock!