I Got This
This time of year, even though she’s a teenager, I find myself spending a lot more time with my daughter.
…and whenever you spend a lot of time with someone, you find out something new.
The Cup Maker
“So, any chance these bottles will disappear from the counter anytime soon?”
I make things. Of course, I do. I’m a guy.
Lately, I’ve been toying around making drinking glasses out of beer bottles. The goal, though, is to use the ones with silk screened “labels,” so they don’t wash off. The problem is these are few and far between. So, after a ton of failures trying to make a clean break of the glass, using my friend YouTube’s instructions (including string, lighter fluid, and fire), I began to give up on the idea.
However, that didn’t stop me from keeping all of the large beer bottles, stored safely away… on the kitchen counter.
“I can’t get the fire burny, glass breaky thing to work… and I’ve kept a couple spares to use to test with.”
“Well, I’ve messed up quite a few, already.”
I go on to explain to her how I’m thinking about buying a glass cutter. I only have seven bottles that are usable. Of those, I’d want to keep two or three. So, the glass cutter is $30. I’d have to sell the remaining five or six for at least $6 or $5 each to make the money back. I didn’t tell her how much I’ve already spent on string, lighter fluid, and fire.
“If you mod-podge the ones with regular labels, you’d be able to sell more of them… so less markup to pay for the cutter.”
What on Earth is mod-podge?
To the Internet! ->
So, it turns out, her idea would work.
I’ve got to say, I’m really proud of that. But, the more I thought about it, the more I realized just how important this is.
More than an answer
She wanted the bottles to stop cluttering the counter. I wanted to make nifty beer-y things. She could just of well said “Oh, throw them away!” This would have solved her “problem.” However, her answer was an actual solution.
It solves her needs and mine.
There was no compromise, either. The solution solved both problems. Both people got what they needed.
But wait, there’s more:
This is the type of thinking that schools don’t teach them. College won’t either.
She worked with her own knowledge to find a solution. Mod-podge is a glue, not a sealant. But, it does advertise as a sealant and would dry clear over the label.
She thought out of the box. Rather than keeping her focus on my issue of selling the ones I knew to be sellable, she figured out a way to sell the others.
She thought like an Entrepreneur. The real problem was covering the cost of the cutter, not my narrow view of only cutting the water-proof ones.
She thought… for the sole purpose of thinking.
I LOVE that.
We always talk about wanting our children to think for themselves.
We’re supposed to be teaching them to solve their own problems, so they can grow up to be self-sufficient adults.
When our kids are teenagers, though, this “thinking for yourself” bit gets a pretty negative connotation. I know I’m guilty of saying “Don’t think about it. I told you to do it!”
Like all things, it comes full-circle. This irritating, seemingly wandering mind, is actually… thinking.
… and scheming.
Taking our place
I used to be the creative one. The problem solver. The fixer of things.
It’s an interesting combination of loss and pride when our kids take over our roles.
On the plus side, I’m a bit lazy. One less role for me to play? Super!
Kicking back, with nuthin’ to do…
PS – On a simple other note: I’ve been having a problem for weeks getting my mail key to open my mailbox. I gave the key to my daughter and she figured out the problem in about ten seconds. Saved me a trip to the post office. Win!
Now, you can follow my shenanigans on: