Friday, December 07, 2012
I live about a half mile away from the school, just far enough for the bus to pick them up, but still close enough to walk if we want. In the building I live, there are at least a dozen different families that have kids in the same school. There are only about 5 families that take the bus.
For some reason most of the parents would rather drive their kids to school. This morning I saw one parent walking their kid to the school as the bus was pulling up, they usually drive him.
I'm not sure the aversion to letting them ride the bus? I find it convenient to just drop them off at the bus stop and let them ride the 5 minutes to school. That allows me some extra me time in the morning because I'm not worrying about getting the kids off to school and having to get myself home again.
I did the math, there are 170 school days in the year (at least I think that's how many I counted), it's just over a half mile to school. So the parent would have to drive to the school, then home (I know for a fact some of them do, so that's why I'm doing this math). That is 1.6 miles in the morning, then again in the afternoon, so 3.2 miles a day wasted in gas money. It makes 360.4 miles in a year. Say the average car runs about 30 miles per gallon, that is 12.013 gallons of gas per year, just bringing the kids to and from school. At $3.50 per gallon average (yes gas is fairly cheap here and I rounded up to the average of the last year) the average parent is spending $42.05 a year just to bring that kid to school. (I think I did the math right?)
Now that may not sound like much to some, but that is a full weeks worth of meals to most of the parents that are doing this, we live in a low income area.
What can one do with that extra time and money from the 10 minutes and 1.6 mile each time? First off it's my sanity I'm preserving by letting someone else haul my kids off to school. By the time they're at school, I've walked most of the way around the park. I can invest that extra money into healthy foods that I would not be able to afford otherwise. That 10 minutes can get a good yoga session done. The 10 minutes can manage a video here on Spark People. The extra time can help you catch up on your reading. The extra 10 minutes can get a short blog written. The extra 10 minutes can get you caught up with a friend for the morning. The extra 10 minutes can cook you breakfast. That extra 10 minutes can get a shower done.
There are so many things that can be done in those 10 minutes that keep one's sanity as a parent. The kids will grow up, so let them be a little independent and allow yourself the time to keep yourself sane.
Don't waste time, make sure you're utilizing every moment that you can and allow others to help you through your life.