Family weekend is coming up, and your family is ecstatic to see you! You are excited too...however, you are also probably trying to put your hot-mess-of-a-life together, do four weeks worth of laundry and clean your filthy dorm room, all before your family touches down in the good ol' Dirty T. Based mostly on personal experience, here are some tips on how to make your family weekend smooth sailing.
Do: hide the evidence. If your mom is anything like my mom, she notices everything. Make sure you hide all the things you Bursared and clothes you promised you wouldn't buy before Mom asks where all your new things came from.
Don't: leave things out that aren't "parent approved." This factor may depends on how conservative your parents are, so use your own judgement. Regardless, I highly doubt Mom wants to see condom wrappers on the floor of her little boy's dorm room.
Do: make dinner reservations ahead of time! There are probably more than 20,000 families coming through Tucson next weekend, and restaurants will fill up fast. Be on top of your game and call ahead of time so you can share a nice meal with the people you haven't seen in almost three months.
Don't: give yourself away. Telling your parents about how wasted you get every Thursday night, or about the time you skipped class because you slept through your alarm is not a good idea. Parents are professional worriers, and they already have enough stress knowing their 18-year-old child is able to do whatever they want at one of the top partying schools in the nation. Your well-being and success is important to them, and while a few drunken nights and skipped classes won't get in the way of that success, your parents will think these actions are comparable to murder and they will probably freak out. Bottom line: what parents don't know won't hurt them.
Do: go tailgating and buy tickets to the game! Game day includes two of the things that make U of A one of the most fun schools in the nation: drinking and school spirit. Get decked out in U of A gear, swing by a few fraternity tailgates (possible beer bong with Dad? It could happen) and cheer on the Wildcats against USC. If you want to really impress your parents, buy your family U of A attire beforehand at the bookstore or order your fraternity or sorority's family weekend shirts and surprise them with it when they arrive.
Don't: get too drunk in front of your parents. Again, this will just make them worry, and who wants to be taken care of by their parents on the weekend you are supposed to be showing them a good time? There are dozens more weekends in the year to drink too much, so keeping the hot mess under wraps for this one won't kill you.
Do: keep everyone hydrated and protected from the sun. Depending on where your family hails from, they may not be used to the Tucson weather. Make sure everyone is prepared for the heat with sunscreen, hats and lots of water, especially during tailgates!
Don't: forget to thank your family for taking time to come see you! I don't always get to see my family because they live so far away, so whenever they venture down to T-town, I am extra grateful. Tell your parents and siblings how much you appreciate and love them, and make sure they know you are happy they are here.
Do: take lots of pictures, hug and kiss your family, take a few shots with your parents, laugh a lot, share embarrassing stories, stay the whole game, sit down and eat together, say 'I love you' and have fun. Cherish the memories you will make this weekend, they will last a lifetime.
And, last but not least, don't forget to BEAR DOWN!