My babies got home tonight (they were at my in-laws for a few days) and I PROMISED Olivia that I wouldn't vote until she got home.
I am absolutely amazed at how in tune her generation is with this election. She's only 8 - and she's so into it. She's been watching the news, talking about the candidates and asking questions for months. She told me who she wanted to be the President before I had even decided. When I asked her why, she really had good, strong, valid points. Whether or not she truly understood them, or where she heard them, I don't know. And the best part? She stuck by her decision and wasn't swayed by "adults" who tried to explain to her that her decision was wrong. I think that's what made me the most proud. Going to vote with me was extremely important to her.
So I waited until she got home and she and Sydney and I went off to the polls.
I expected the lines to be long (it was almost 7:00 when we got there) but there was almost no one there and we breezed right in. The best part though, was that they let the kids "help" me vote. They each got to push buttons on the computer screen (with my supervision, of course) and you should have seen them both really concentrating and thinking about what they were doing. Olivia can read, so she already knew what button to push. But Sydney asked me questions about what she was doing and who or what she was voting for (we also voted for Congressmen, BOE members, a few amendments). They each got "I Voted" stickers and a piece of cake.
It was truly an experience for them. Voting is so important to me and I want my girls to realize how lucky they are to live in a country where they CAN vote. They need to know that it's important - not just to vote - but to be informed and be involved. And I am so amazed at how seriously they both took it and how excited they were to be a part of it. I was so proud.
Oh, and apparently Sydney is a Republican. I blame her father.