The other morning I was cleaning out a basket that is sort of a catch all for school work, mail, and receipts. I came across the graduation packet for my oldest and decided to give it a look see.

Holy mackerel. In order to participate in the graduation ceremony she is required to purchase a cap, gown and tassel. That is $21 plus shipping, etc. That’s affordable. But man, did I have to search for that price. They try to hook you into buying these graduation packages which include announcements, hoodies, teddy bears, mugs and a lot of other nonsense – all for the bargain price of $239!

Senior portraits? That’s another rip off. I don’t recall what mine cost back in 1982, but I’m sure it’s not even close to the fortune they expect you to pay for a decent photo with good lighting. The crappy package is $160. To order just one 8 x 10 is $80. It irks the living shit out of me. I don’t have to buy them at all, but the photos are so nice, and my daughter looks so lovely…

It’s also time for college applications! That’s a $50 cha-ching to my wallet over and over again! Whee! And that’s just to see if she gets in – then we get the thrill of finding out what kind of financial aid she qualifies for. After all that time and money spent, if the numbers don’t crunch in her favor, she may not be able to go to college at all!

Let’s not forget activity fees! To take part in Drama this year cost me $50. She also wants to be on the speech team…guess what? Another $50! Two rounds of SAT testing, neither of which produced great test scores? Another $90….EACH! Wait, I have to order her year book too – That’s another $60.

I’m not even going to mention the stuff she will need for college, if she goes…a laptop, bedding, microwave, furniture. Or the money it will cost us to throw any sort of a graduation shindig.

Where’s the want ads…I need a part time job.

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