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  #1  
Old 06-03-2011, 04:48 PM
needscoffee needscoffee is offline
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What do parents do for their kids' high school graduation?

What do parents do for their kids graduating high school? When I was growing up, our family didn't do anything, as it was just expected that we'd graduate, and my parents were divorcing around that time and probably never even noticed. I never asked my friends if they got anything. But looking around now, I see all my daughter's classmates getting lavished with gifts, money, cars, etc. What's a reasonable thing to do? (Now is not a particularly good time money-wise as college expenses are being allotted for and spouse had emergency medical issues.)

What about graduation announcements? Is there any reason to send them? None of my friends or relatives has ever sent me graduation announcements for their high school graduates, and I'd feel like I was fishing for gifts if I sent them.
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  #2  
Old 06-03-2011, 04:53 PM
MsWhatsit MsWhatsit is offline
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I have a brother who is graduating from high school this year. My family is throwing a combined party for him and one of my cousins who is also graduating. There will be a BBQ potluck thing, and probably some people (not all) will give them cards with money or small gifts. Nothing lavish.
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  #3  
Old 06-03-2011, 05:53 PM
Amazingrace Amazingrace is offline
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In Michigan, it's basically expected that a graduate will have an "Open House." I'm sure there were some folks who didn't do it, but I can't think of any. Even my dirt poor relations had one. They almost invariably, regardless of class or means:
  • Are 3-4 hours long
  • Are on a Saturday or Sunday in the month after graduation
  • Have a "shrine" to the graduate, with pictures from throughout the years, along with awards, varsity jackets, etc.
  • Involve cake and punch
  • Have an outdoor tent with tables and chairs set up for people to gather and eat

There's always a buffet, which can range from a catered affair to Swedish meatballs and other snacks. Most people have their extended family there for the entirety, but in the "open house," spirit, most student-guests travel to numerous open houses throughout the day. Parents invite friends of the family. Teachers sometimes make appearances. Some share the party with a friend or cousin who is also graduating.

Most adults will bring a card, often with a few (25 to more) dollars for the graduate. More serious gifts tend to come from family members. Often the students use the money to buy a computer for college.

I'm sure other Michiganders (or mid-westerners... I don't know how far this phenomenon stretches) can share their tales.
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  #4  
Old 06-03-2011, 06:07 PM
NinetyWt NinetyWt is offline
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Here, it runs the gamut. You have some people who basically do nothing special other than go to the graduation ceremony itself. On the other end of the spectrum, you have people who throw huge parties, bring roses to give to the graduate at the graduation ceremony, etc.

I reckon average folks take the kid out to eat on graduation night. Some extended family usually comes to town for the occasion as well.

Most people do send graduation announcements. I wouldn't feel bad about that being "fishing" for gifts; it's just an announcement of a milestone in the kid's life.
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  #5  
Old 06-03-2011, 07:58 PM
needscoffee needscoffee is offline
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So not everybody gives their kid a new car? A European vacation? Note to self: confirm with daughter's friends' parents before believing everything she tells me.
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  #6  
Old 06-03-2011, 08:46 PM
alphaboi867 alphaboi867 is offline
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My parents took me out to dinner at my favourite restaurant that weekend. I never wanted a party of any kind.
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  #7  
Old 06-03-2011, 09:56 PM
ZenBeam ZenBeam is offline
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Originally Posted by alphaboi867 View Post
My parents took me out to dinner at my favourite restaurant that weekend. I never wanted a party of any kind.
When was that? Recently?
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  #8  
Old 06-03-2011, 10:03 PM
Taters Taters is offline
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When my daughter graduated, we took her, her boyfriend and the family (my son, mother, MiL, dad and stepmom) out to a nice waterfront restaurant on the night of graduation.

We also bought her a laptop that she could use for college.

We'll probably take my son to dinner on graduation night (assuming he doesn't make other plans), but sadly there is no way we can swing paying for everyone's meal at such a nice place this time. We'll also get him a laptop (it's what he asked for), but it won't be right away. Probably in time for him to start school in August, though.

Many of my kids' schoolmates received trips to Mexico or Hawaii or new cars. We can't swing anything like that.
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  #9  
Old 06-03-2011, 10:12 PM
justanotherdeaf justanotherdeaf is offline
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mom and dad got up, dressed at their Sunday best, watch their kids graduate with a smile on their face, take pictures and tell them they love them and how proud they are, and thats it.

although I did not go to my graduation (I did not cared at all for it) but I did go to all my siblings
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  #10  
Old 06-03-2011, 10:18 PM
silenus silenus is offline
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Based on last night, around here the adults dress up in their "Wednesday night at the Bowl-a-rama" best, show off their really lousy tats and cuss out the security staff when they aren't allowed to climb a fence to get across the field. I have never seen so many white-trash losers in my life as I did last night. They are all living proof that you don't need any talent to be a tattoo "artist," and that their kids were the intellectual giants of the family, having at least graduated high school.
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  #11  
Old 06-04-2011, 09:48 AM
NinetyWt NinetyWt is offline
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This reminds me... remember S&H Green Stamps? You'd get them at the grocery store when you bought groceries. You pasted them into little books and then traded the books for merchandise.

My graduation gift from my parents was a little clock radio that my mom got with Green Stamps. I still have it.
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  #12  
Old 06-04-2011, 10:35 AM
Silophant Silophant is offline
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Originally Posted by Amazingrace View Post
In Michigan, it's basically expected that a graduate will have an "Open House." I'm sure there were some folks who didn't do it, but I can't think of any. Even my dirt poor relations had one. They almost invariably, regardless of class or means:
  • Are 3-4 hours long
  • Are on a Saturday or Sunday in the month after graduation
  • Have a "shrine" to the graduate, with pictures from throughout the years, along with awards, varsity jackets, etc.
  • Involve cake and punch
  • Have an outdoor tent with tables and chairs set up for people to gather and eat

There's always a buffet, which can range from a catered affair to Swedish meatballs and other snacks. Most people have their extended family there for the entirety, but in the "open house," spirit, most student-guests travel to numerous open houses throughout the day. Parents invite friends of the family. Teachers sometimes make appearances. Some share the party with a friend or cousin who is also graduating.

Most adults will bring a card, often with a few (25 to more) dollars for the graduate. More serious gifts tend to come from family members. Often the students use the money to buy a computer for college.

I'm sure other Michiganders (or mid-westerners... I don't know how far this phenomenon stretches) can share their tales.
This is exactly the case in Minnesota as well.

[Edit: With the exception that here, I've never even heard of a shared party, except in the case of twins or siblings that are in the same graduating class.]

Last edited by Silophant; 06-04-2011 at 10:38 AM..
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  #13  
Old 06-04-2011, 12:24 PM
mnemosyne mnemosyne is offline
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Nothing much; my parents bought me a new stereo, but my graduation ceremony was near my birthday so it was a double gift. They might have tossed me $20 to pay for gas when I went out and partied with my friends. Among my friends and family, high school graduation is kind of the default and not that big a deal. Heck, even for my (first) university graduation, my parents came up and we went to a restaurant and they bought me a watch, but that's it. We are an over-educated bunch, though (I have 2 bachelors, as do both my parents, my sister has 2 and a professional degree, hubby has a master's, etc), so a more appropriate milestone might be actually starting to work! If we could be paid to constantly learn, we'd probably all choose that option!
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  #14  
Old 06-04-2011, 01:36 PM
nashiitashii nashiitashii is offline
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Originally Posted by needscoffee View Post
So not everybody gives their kid a new car? A European vacation? Note to self: confirm with daughter's friends' parents before believing everything she tells me.
It's only common among those who have a lot of money; however, in this area, if you have kids and a lot of money, your kid gets a new car as soon as they get their driver's license.

A small party that's "open house" style is much more the norm in my experience- have cake, some appetizers, and maybe some drinks for the parents, and that's about it. Some folks give monetary gifts to celebrate, but it's more about having a nice couple of hours for the graduate to see that others are proud of the fact that they finished high school and are moving on to bigger and better things.
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  #15  
Old 06-04-2011, 01:45 PM
kushiel kushiel is offline
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Upper and middle class kids here usually go to a fancy restaurant on graduation day with their families between the morning ceremony and the evening celebration at the school. Anyone going on to university often got a laptop or luggage or some other expensive thing they might need.
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  #16  
Old 06-04-2011, 02:56 PM
FairyChatMom FairyChatMom is offline
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I don't think I got anything for graduation - class of '72!

We took our daughter out to dinner for her graduation and helped her move into her apartment before starting college. I think that was it...
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  #17  
Old 06-04-2011, 06:12 PM
Sigmagirl Sigmagirl is offline
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My father gave me nothing. He was going to come to the ceremony but decided not to at the last minute. So I went by myself. My aunt and uncle gave me a clock radio and my best friend gave me a pen. I got nothing at all for college graduation, and again, I went by myself. No party either time.
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  #18  
Old 06-04-2011, 06:26 PM
needscoffee needscoffee is offline
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Originally Posted by NinetyWt View Post
This reminds me... remember S&H Green Stamps? You'd get them at the grocery store when you bought groceries. You pasted them into little books and then traded the books for merchandise.

My graduation gift from my parents was a little clock radio that my mom got with Green Stamps. I still have it.
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Originally Posted by Sigmagirl View Post
... My aunt and uncle gave me a clock radio...
Did they use S&H Green Stamps to buy it?
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  #19  
Old 06-04-2011, 06:53 PM
Ostrya Ostrya is offline
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Around here there's horseshoe toss. A campfire is a must, allows intoxicated minors to leap over it later in the evening and after dark, while others snap and video cell phone pics to send to all the redneck hillibilies who are in jail or for some other reason could not be at the party. There should be premium budweiser in cans, lots of chewing tobacco, cigarettes, and noisy full throttle rides on an atv, up and down the drive. Up and down, up and down, copious donuts will be produced, much gravel will fly.

There will likely be felatio performed in the garage and/or tool shed sometime after midnight (I am serious - imagine all the graduates friends crowding, huddling at the garage window, snickering and snapping cell phone pics of the not so unsuspecting perverts).

Also, if they can't afford high-end illegal skyward bound fireworks, they will somehow manage to obtain plenty of bottle rockets and firecrackers.

I have just been invited to yet another graduation party that will take place down the street on July 23 - plenty of time to make plans to be the hell out of town for the weekend. But then again, if I leave, who will guard my house and property?

(Did I mention I am selling my house? If anyone's interested, I will give you a really good deal on it, it's practically free it's such a good deal.)
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  #20  
Old 06-04-2011, 07:26 PM
needscoffee needscoffee is offline
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Originally Posted by the lone cashew View Post
Around here there's horseshoe toss. A campfire is a must, allows intoxicated minors to leap over it later in the evening and after dark, while others snap and video cell phone pics to send to all the redneck hillibilies who are in jail or for some other reason could not be at the party. There should be premium budweiser in cans, lots of chewing tobacco, cigarettes, and noisy full throttle rides on an atv, up and down the drive. Up and down, up and down, copious donuts will be produced, much gravel will fly.

There will likely be felatio performed in the garage and/or tool shed sometime after midnight (I am serious - imagine all the graduates friends crowding, huddling at the garage window, snickering and snapping cell phone pics of the not so unsuspecting perverts).

Also, if they can't afford high-end illegal skyward bound fireworks, they will somehow manage to obtain plenty of bottle rockets and firecrackers.
But that's what we do all the other nights!

Wait, how do you know so much about the garage activities and people peering in the windows?
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  #21  
Old 06-04-2011, 07:37 PM
PunditLisa PunditLisa is offline
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We threw a picnic type party for her with corn hole, glow-in-the-dark bocce, and backyard volleyball.

We bought her a laptop for college.
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  #22  
Old 06-04-2011, 07:47 PM
Athena Athena is offline
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Originally Posted by Amazingrace View Post
In Michigan, it's basically expected that a graduate will have an "Open House." I'm sure there were some folks who didn't do it, but I can't think of any. Even my dirt poor relations had one. They almost invariably, regardless of class or means:
  • Are 3-4 hours long
  • Are on a Saturday or Sunday in the month after graduation
  • Have a "shrine" to the graduate, with pictures from throughout the years, along with awards, varsity jackets, etc.
  • Involve cake and punch
  • Have an outdoor tent with tables and chairs set up for people to gather and eat

There's always a buffet, which can range from a catered affair to Swedish meatballs and other snacks. Most people have their extended family there for the entirety, but in the "open house," spirit, most student-guests travel to numerous open houses throughout the day. Parents invite friends of the family. Teachers sometimes make appearances. Some share the party with a friend or cousin who is also graduating.

Most adults will bring a card, often with a few (25 to more) dollars for the graduate. More serious gifts tend to come from family members. Often the students use the money to buy a computer for college.

I'm sure other Michiganders (or mid-westerners... I don't know how far this phenomenon stretches) can share their tales.
It's similar but not exactly the same in da UP.

We have "graduation parties." They start in the afternoon, and proceed into early evening. Or late evening, if it's a really great party.

It's as much for the parents as the graduate; family is invited, as are both the graduate's and the parent's friends. Gifts of money are typical - I think I got close to $1500 for my graduation party, and that was in 1987.

No shrine. No cake and punch. No catering.

Beer and other alcohol is typical, along with soft drinks/iced tea/lemonade etc for the kids. The grill is going, and there's BBQ type food like potato salad and burgers.

What's odd is that it's not uncommon for the graduate themselves not to be there. Sure, he/she will be there for a while, but given that there's many hundreds of kids graduating on the same day, there's a LOT of graduation parties going on in the the week or so afterwards. The graduating kids are also invited to lots of parties, and they usually spend the the day going from one to another.

In my time, the graduates were usually allowed by their parents to drink, so it was quite a party day. I gather that nowadays that's not so common.
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  #23  
Old 06-04-2011, 08:16 PM
Zsofia Zsofia is offline
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In 1997, my parents had a big shindig, catered and all, but that was partly because my dad was at the time still working and an executive VP at his company so all those people expected to come. (And gave me cards with hundreds in them!) Also I had some aunts and uncles come into town to go to the ceremony and all.
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  #24  
Old 06-04-2011, 08:25 PM
notfrommensa notfrommensa is offline
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When I graduated high school, my (single) mother had a few family friends over for cocktails and finger food etc. It seems really weird now, but I had quite a lot to drink. I was 18 and it was legal in NY state in 1979.

Most of the graduating class went to a friends cabin for graduation day party the next day.had a party Swimming, water skiing, etc. There was probably 125-150 kids there and he was a fairly close friend of mine so i spent the night there (it was about 35 miles away). Again there was drinking involved, and since most kids were 18, it was entirely legal.

We didn't have anything like Project Graduation.

slight hijack question. What do you give graduates who are children of close friends or acquaintances?

A few years ago, I got a graduation announcement from a twin brothers. Two good kids, whom I liked very much but didn't know them very well. I considered their father a friend (but not a close). the only time we would see each other is when we happened to play golf together.

I gave them $10 apiece and my administrative assistant at the time said that was cheap.

I gave my nephews $50 for their graduation and kids of close friends $25.
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  #25  
Old 06-04-2011, 08:51 PM
Markxxx Markxxx is offline
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I graduated at 15, (I skipped a year and graduated early) and all I got was a cake.

But really no one in my middle class suburb got anything.

The real thing was "grad night." This was an all night party at a friend's house that usually involved drinking. That was less a deal as IL raised the drinking age in 1980 from 19 to 21

But since I was so younger of course, I wasn't privy to any parties. But that was the big thing in my area.

I still can't believe what kids get now for graduating high schools, especially since it's not a big deal anymore.
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  #26  
Old 06-04-2011, 09:10 PM
Wendell Wagner Wendell Wagner is offline
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This is like the question of what you're expected to spend for a child's wedding. You're not expected to bankrupt yourself for their wedding, and you're not expected to bankrupt yourself for their graduation either. If your child comes crying to you that they are forever shamed because you failed to provide them with the same level of party and gift as their rich friends, tell them that this is their chance to learn about what the real world is like. Not everybody is equally rich, and not everybody can have the same luxuries.

It's standard to send out graduation announcements to your close relatives and friends. If they happen to send your child a present (of money or whatever), that's fine, but that's strictly their choice. Make sure your child sends thank-you cards for any such presents. If you can afford a party, go ahead and have one. Don't feel the need to have a bigger party than you can afford. Give them a gift that you can afford. A nice set of luggage so that they can travel back and forth between your home and college would be appropriate, for instance.
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  #27  
Old 06-04-2011, 09:16 PM
MPB in Salt Lake MPB in Salt Lake is offline
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Corn Hole?
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  #28  
Old 06-04-2011, 10:05 PM
salinqmind salinqmind is offline
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We don't entertain very much, and it's tricky in the summer because we don't have air conditioning (except in a room upstairs). But we did bestir ourselves to host a party for our daughter's high school graduation. It turned out to be a nice day, we invited about 20 friends and relatives, had a beautiful cake and ice cream. And a spread of cheese, crackers, pepperoni, little pizza squares, and all kinds of fruit. Punch, soda, wine and beer available. Lots of pictures taken, and she got mostly small amounts of money (including a hundred dollar bill folded into an origami bird)....College graduation, we drove home from the ceremony (getting caught in a rainstorm of biblical proportions, we were soaked clear through to our underwear) and we parents, our daughter, and her boyfriend met at a restaurant. That was about it for college, we gave her a pair of pearl earrings that came in an enamel and gold seashell box, and a model of a human skeleton under a plastic dome (that she put together, being an anthropology major) as a souvenier!
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  #29  
Old 06-04-2011, 10:24 PM
aruvqan aruvqan is offline
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I graduated in 1980 from a private school in Rochester NY. Several of us were from south of Rochester and there was a huge party thrown in Geneseo just down the hill from campus on private property. There was a band, lots of loud music, drinking, eating and illicit smokable goodies. The music was loud enough that complaints were called in from up by where Wegmans is now

It was actually lots of fun. The official school functions were a noon graduation, with a graduation reception in the school caffeteria, which also sort of doubles as class reunion for everybody who has ever gone there. Evening was a dinner and dance [that year we had Spyro Gyra] for the graduating year only followed by a semi official sleep over pool party at a classmates house who had an indoor pool and an outdoor pool. Very fun.

I didn't get anything from my parents for graduation, I was actually estranged from them and supporting myself. I remember getting a lovely necklace and watch from my grandmother though.
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  #30  
Old 06-04-2011, 10:32 PM
CanvasShoes CanvasShoes is offline
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I got a car... but my dad had given it to me as a combination graduation and Christmas present, which he'd given to me the Christmas before graduation (it was a used car, a very COOL car, and is now a classic which I'm ever so slowly in the process of restoring). My parents secretly got poster paint and used my school colors to paint it up with all sorts of "Congrats Grad!" and all that sort of thing, my friends filled it to the brim with green and gold balloons. They sneakily took me around to my Aunt and Uncle's place, where my school spirit painted car was hiding, on some pretense or another and all of the relatives were there taking snapshots and all.

At the time my grandparents owned a cabin in Talkeetna, about 100 some odd miles north of Anchorage, and like all big family celebrations, we had my HS graduation party there. I guess I was a weird kid, I had lots of school parties to go to, but when my parents asked I said "nope I'd rather go to the family cabin with everyone".

I got some cards with a little cash from relatives, but what really mattered was that they made a "Do" out of it and the love and attention. It would have been just as cool without "Truli" (the classic car).

I think that if you make even a little fuss over your grad, they'll love it!
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  #31  
Old 06-04-2011, 11:25 PM
NinetyWt NinetyWt is offline
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Originally Posted by MPB in Salt Lake View Post
Corn Hole?
That's some kind of bean-bag-toss game that Yankees play.


Or so I'm told.


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  #32  
Old 06-05-2011, 12:59 AM
antonio107 antonio107 is offline
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I got a car and a watch for high school. Then we went to the Chinese buffet.

When I finished my undergrad, I got a PS3, and we went to a nice mid-low priced steakhouse.

I'm getting my master's degree on Friday. We're cooking at home, and then I'm getting cash for booze and the craps table at the casino.

Barring any surprises, the celebrations and rewards are dwindling. When I (hopefully) finish law school three years from now, I'm guessing my mom will tell me to go ahead and super-size my fries this time.
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  #33  
Old 06-05-2011, 01:32 AM
elfkin477 elfkin477 is offline
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That's some kind of bean-bag-toss game that Yankees play.


Or so I'm told.


Oh, hell no. It's sure as hell not those of us you call yankees playing a game called cornhole. Pretty sure it's a midwestern term because here it means something that you hope doesn't happen to you when you get sent to the state pen.
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  #34  
Old 06-05-2011, 02:33 AM
YaraMateo YaraMateo is offline
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Originally Posted by MPB in Salt Lake View Post
Corn Hole?
That had me like too, but it must be regional thing.

For my graduation, I got a Louis Vuitton purse from my mom. I got some money from family. Something like 400 dollars. I spent it books. I didn't want a party. I didn't want one when I graduated college either. I've never been one for big parties. As others have mentioned, it seems more for parents/the family than the graduate.
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  #35  
Old 06-05-2011, 05:00 AM
Teufelblitz Teufelblitz is offline
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My observations of graduations before and during mine were that in general, those with means would generally get bigger parties and larger gifts. Those with lesser means would generally get dinner and a good-on-ya.

Personally, I think one of the worst investments in the world is a car for a high school graduate.
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  #36  
Old 06-05-2011, 06:09 AM
PunditLisa PunditLisa is offline
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That had me like too, but it must be regional thing.
Sorry about that.

It's an outdoor family game and/or a drinking game, that may have been invented here in Ohio, though I've seen it played as far away as Florida. Kind of a cross between horse shoes and shuffle board. The object is to toss bean bags onto a slightly inclined wooden boxes, with a hole carved in the upper end, 30 feet away. Two people per side, one member per team. 4 bean bags filled with corn (hence the name, I suppose) for each person. If the bag goes in the hole, it's 3 points. On the board is 1 point. You can knock other bags off the platform or into the hole. First to 21 wins.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cornhole
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  #37  
Old 06-05-2011, 06:11 AM
flodnak flodnak is offline
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When I graduated in 1987 we had a cake-and-punch sort of reception for the family. I got a camera as a present from my parents, and smaller gifts, mostly checks for $25 or so, from other relatives.

Haven't yet decided what to do when the older young flodnak graduates in two years' time. Mostly because I'm in denial that he's going to graduate in two years' time.
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  #38  
Old 06-05-2011, 07:10 AM
Mean Mr. Mustard Mean Mr. Mustard is offline
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Originally Posted by Amazingrace View Post
In Michigan...
  • Are 3-4 hours long
  • Are on a Saturday or Sunday in the month after graduation
  • Have a "shrine" to the graduate, with pictures from throughout the years, along with awards, varsity jackets, etc.
  • Involve cake and punch
  • Have an outdoor tent with tables and chairs set up for people to gather and eat
I've been to dozens of these exact shindigs; you nailed it. Yeah, I'm in Michigan.


mmm
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  #39  
Old 06-05-2011, 09:58 AM
Sigmagirl Sigmagirl is offline
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Originally Posted by needscoffee View Post
Did they use S&H Green Stamps to buy it?
Now that I come to think of it, my aunt collected some kind of trading stamps, the name of which I can't remember right now. I wouldn't be surprised at all if she used stamps to buy it. Now I"m going to be racking my brain all day to remember what kind of stamps those were. She used to make me paste them in the book, too. I can see the damn things, I just can't . . .
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  #40  
Old 06-05-2011, 09:59 AM
salinqmind salinqmind is offline
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My own graduation back in days of old? I asked my mom, "are we having a party?" and she said, "no." (same thing when I said, am I going to college? No.)

Oh. OK. So a couple of friends and I (we were 17) just walked around town to crash other kids' parties, went home at about 2 a.m., stopping every so often to puke in somebody's bushes because of all the spiked punch we guzzled all evening! Good Times!
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  #41  
Old 06-05-2011, 10:29 AM
NinetyWt NinetyWt is offline
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Originally Posted by elfkin477 View Post
Pretty sure it's a midwestern term because here it means something that you hope doesn't happen to you when you get sent to the state pen.
Oh, sorry! Everything north of Memphis is Yankee-land to me. No offense intended!
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  #42  
Old 06-05-2011, 11:25 AM
PapSett PapSett is offline
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I graduated high school in 1978, and I bet I'm the only one here that got a horse for graduation! A real, live 15 hand tall bay half Arabian gelding. I have l9oved horses since I drew my first breath, but living in the city it made it near impossible to own one. When I figured out there was such a thing as boarding a horse out, my parents relented and agreed to buy me a horse for graduation, but I had to pay for the upkeep.

Best graduation present ever.

They also took me out to dinner at a local bar (in the family room of course) that had the best fried chicken EVER. I miss my horse AND that damned bar...
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  #43  
Old 06-05-2011, 01:42 PM
RedWood RedWood is offline
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Originally Posted by Sigmagirl View Post
Now that I come to think of it, my aunt collected some kind of trading stamps, the name of which I can't remember right now. I wouldn't be surprised at all if she used stamps to buy it. Now I"m going to be racking my brain all day to remember what kind of stamps those were. She used to make me paste them in the book, too. I can see the damn things, I just can't . . .
My Mom collected both S&H Green Stamps and Blue Chip stamps...
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  #44  
Old 06-05-2011, 01:56 PM
TriPolar TriPolar is online now
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My idea was to move and not tell the kids where we were going. My wife wouldn't go along with that idea. She regrets it now.

Re: Green Stamps. In 1971 I was a teenager who had to hitchhike back and forth to a job. I carried a sign that read "I give Green Stamps". I think I got picked up more often and more quickly because people were amused by the concept. Even a cop gave me ride once, and couldn't keep a straight face while giving me the hitchhiking lecture. And I did give out the stamps. My parents had drawer full of them and were never going to redeem them.
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  #45  
Old 06-05-2011, 02:21 PM
Silver Tyger Silver Tyger is offline
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I don't remember what we did for mine. I know my parents bought me a semi-nice opal ring. I was thinking we had a party, but that was when I got my AS (ironically, we did less when I got my BA, but the circumstances were different.)

High school wasn't a big deal for me - I didn't go to prom, the senior trip, or anything like that.
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  #46  
Old 06-05-2011, 07:44 PM
YaraMateo YaraMateo is offline
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Originally Posted by PunditLisa View Post
Sorry about that.

It's an outdoor family game and/or a drinking game, that may have been invented here in Ohio, though I've seen it played as far away as Florida. Kind of a cross between horse shoes and shuffle board. The object is to toss bean bags onto a slightly inclined wooden boxes, with a hole carved in the upper end, 30 feet away. Two people per side, one member per team. 4 bean bags filled with corn (hence the name, I suppose) for each person. If the bag goes in the hole, it's 3 points. On the board is 1 point. You can knock other bags off the platform or into the hole. First to 21 wins.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cornhole
Thanks for explaining.
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  #47  
Old 06-05-2011, 08:48 PM
BigT BigT is offline
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McDonald's or Walmart. Seriously. I thought maybe I was just uncool enough not to get invited to a party, but, no, it didn't seem like anyone had one. That's where I wound up seeing nearly everyone. Even some of the "rich" kids were there.

Of course we handed out the graduation invitations, as you bought that with the gown. But that's even more of a reason not to do anything special--lots of kids apparently stayed with their family who had come up.

The only parties I ever heard about were those held on the last day of school, which was well before graduation. And it was really less of a party and more of a group of people just going different places when they normally would have been in school.
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  #48  
Old 06-05-2011, 09:09 PM
ThelmaLou ThelmaLou is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NinetyWt View Post
This reminds me... remember S&H Green Stamps? You'd get them at the grocery store when you bought groceries. You pasted them into little books and then traded the books for merchandise.

My graduation gift from my parents was a little clock radio that my mom got with Green Stamps. I still have it.
Awww... that's sweet.

When I graduated from high school in 1966, I was valedictorian, senior class president and a National Merit Finalist, but I don't remember my parents doing anything in particular. They didn't notice me very much.
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  #49  
Old 06-05-2011, 09:12 PM
missred missred is offline
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Originally Posted by Amazingrace View Post
In Michigan, it's basically expected that a graduate will have an "Open House." I'm sure there were some folks who didn't do it, but I can't think of any. Even my dirt poor relations had one. They almost invariably, regardless of class or means:
  • Are 3-4 hours long
  • Are on a Saturday or Sunday in the month after graduation
  • Have a "shrine" to the graduate, with pictures from throughout the years, along with awards, varsity jackets, etc.
  • Involve cake and punch
  • Have an outdoor tent with tables and chairs set up for people to gather and eat

There's always a buffet, which can range from a catered affair to Swedish meatballs and other snacks. Most people have their extended family there for the entirety, but in the "open house," spirit, most student-guests travel to numerous open houses throughout the day. Parents invite friends of the family. Teachers sometimes make appearances. Some share the party with a friend or cousin who is also graduating.

Most adults will bring a card, often with a few (25 to more) dollars for the graduate. More serious gifts tend to come from family members. Often the students use the money to buy a computer for college.

I'm sure other Michiganders (or mid-westerners... I don't know how far this phenomenon stretches) can share their tales.
I grew up in Indiana and it was the same deal. An option to the cash (at least for girl grads) was a piece of grown-up type jewelry.

When my step-kids graduated in the nineties (one in Indiana and one in Tennessee), we did the dinner thing and gave them enough money for a budget weekend trip with some of their friends. The family still in Indiana still does the open house thing (in fact, I'll be up there next weekend at one for two of my cousins' kids' combined party); friends and family here in Tennessee tend to celebrate in a variety of ways.

Last edited by missred; 06-05-2011 at 09:13 PM..
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  #50  
Old 06-06-2011, 07:26 AM
Walkabout Walkabout is offline
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When I graduated high school in 1979 I got a suitcase and a trip to Myrtle Beach with my friends.

When my daughter graduated high school in 2007, she got a laptop and we had a combined party for her and her cousin. It was in a church activity room and included a catered lunch, and we invited all the relatives. She was not allowed to go to Myrtle Beach with her friends because I remember what that trip was like when I went.

For her college graduation this year, we took her to lunch at a nice restaurant.
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