My “baby” is heading off to Spain tomorrow without me, and I’m bummed.

It doesn’t matter that she’s almost fourteen years old, an experienced traveler, and that this is not her first trip to Europe. I know that she will be with her school group (and her grandmother, if truth be told), but she won’t be with ME.

Can I cram all my professional guidance into her in these last 24 hours before she leaves? Reminding her about exchange rates, airport regulations, and what to do if she loses her passport?

Or should I instead put on my “mom” hat and talk to her about being open minded and polite with other cultures, keeping a close eye on her wallet and other belongings, and maintaining a healthy distrust of strangers (especially boys!)

I’ve tried doing both, but I think she’s already tuning me out and dreaming about cobblestone streets, cathedrals, and cafes. Oh well, I guess I need to just close my eyes and let her go…armed with a camera and a journal so she can share EVERY detail with me when she gets back.