Hard Work Is An Important Part Of Growing Up!


I spent my entire youth, from age six to age eighteen, as a paperboy for the Washington Post. It was hard work but it became a ‘family affair’ and I have many wonderful memories of the early morning hours spent talking and associating not only with my siblings, but with my Mother who often drove me around on the route. Even my father would help from time to time. I can still recall the warm feelings of working together on that route and the wonderful talks I would have with my Mother and it was also nice to always have my own money to manage and spend.

So it was that a number of years ago, with warm memories in heart, that I picked up a weekend route of delivering more than 400 papers of The Baltimore Sun with the intent to spend time with my children and to help them learn about work and the rewards that came from it. An email sent to my parents more than 20 years ago captures some of my thoughts at the time.

“Vickie and I have said almost every week we are going to drop it but every time we bring it up to the kids they beg to keep it. It pays about 130 dollars a week and I let the kids have it all. I now expect them to use their money wisely and pay tithing and save for school and missions. The kids say I love the route cause I talk about all the funny things that go on while we are delivering the papers. We deliver a lot of papers to townhouses. I have the kids get out and run them. They have fun and are learning to work. Last week Ashley (nine years old at the time) was hanging onto the side of the van as I was going from one court to another. The wind was blowing her hair back and she had the biggest grin on her face. As I was driving along she looks at me with that grin and says “Mom would never let me do this!” Vic and I laughed so hard at that. Dad’s can get away with being reckless. The distributor of the papers lives in our route and the other night he was coming in when we are passing his house. The next day when we picked up the papers he said “Where is that little girl?” He had heard Ashley say to her brothers that she was not going to bring one paper to a certain door because there was a cat on the porch and she was afraid. He thought that was darling. He told me, “…I think it is so neat you are doing this as a family!”

My life was tremendously blessed by learning young that work was an important part of life. Hard work is an important part of growing up and becoming self-relient. There are many ways, as a family we can accomplish that goal. We just need to have it as a goal.

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