14 August 2013

Independence Day

Hannah has pink, AJ has blue and Tom has green - they came from Officeworks and are under $6 each

Our gorgeous daughter Hannah has just celebrated her 18th birthday (and it was a lovely day, spent with her friends and family and a "cool" party, so I was told, to celebrate).

When each of our kids have turned 18 I've given them an extra present, just from me. I hand them an expanding file, in their favourite colour (blue for AJ, green for Tom, pink for Hannah) that holds all their important documentation. They are adults now, and they can look after their own paperwork (with a little help from Mum and Dad when necessary).

Today I handed Hannah her folder.

In her folder I put:
  •  Her blue book with all her vaccination records etc. in it
  •  School reports from Prep to Year 12
  •  Special awards, ribbons, certificates
  •  Her birth certificate
  •  Her current bank statement/s
  •  Her tax information
  •  The details for her mobile phone (handbook, receipt, warranty etc.)
  •  The details for her computer (receipt, warranty etc.)
This morning, we went to the bank and sorted her bank accounts (making sure she is sole signatory, getting savings and everyday transaction accounts up to date and so on).  She also applied for a Mastercard debit card so she can do her own online shopping and leave my card alone :)

Next we went to Medicare to get her off my Medicare card (I keep the kids on my card until they turn 18, they've all had their own card since they were 16) and made sure Medicare had banking details for her.

When we finished at Medicare we went to the Post Office and picked up an application form for a passport and started the application process.

Finally we came home and made an appointment with our family solicitor for her to make a will.

Turning 18 is a big deal, and the party is just a small part of it.

When I hand over their expanding files, each one of my kids has accepted it with excitement. It's a right of passage into adulthood. They understand that I'm letting them go, that they are now responsible for themselves. And they know that their Dad and I will always be here to offer advice and help if it's needed and wanted.

This morning I handed Hannah her file.

My baby is independent.


  1. When my four turned 18 I handed over their papers, but I used a small set of drawers, with one labelled tax, one ID, one for bills and one miscellaneous The older two still have theirs since they've both moved out. And my younger two have changed to an expandable folder. It's an exciting time for them being responsible for themselves. I hope Hannah had a great birthday.
    Cheers Janine

  2. What a wonderful idea. I bet they remember that gift more than any others. Di

  3. Cath, that's so sad and yet so exciting. What a great idea. Jessica will be turning 18 in about 18 months so I'll keep this in mind. I think she'll need an expanding file just for her school reports - there are so many.

    1. Not sad, a little melancholy (for me anyway) but very exciting for Hannah and once I get over being the mother of adult children (I feel so old!) it will be exciting for me too. Hannah has great plans for her life and they include me, as her mother. My job of raising children may be over but now I have the job of guiding them as they start their independent lives and move on to make their own homes and families.

      And really the best part is that in just 10 weeks, after 18 years of doing the school run every morning and every afternoon (such a long time), I won't have to! I have no idea what I'm going to do to fill in that hour and half I'll get back each day, but I'm pretty sure I'll be able to think of something :)

  4. HI Cath, Just a quick note to say I think your "rite of passage" folder and the "hand over" to adulthood is absolutely brilliant. Thank-you for sharing. Your children are blessed to have you as parents. Cheers Jo

  5. I just love this idea Cath, thanks for sharing.


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