Personal: My Daughter Made Me Do This (But I’m Very Proud)

TL;DR –  My daughter is seeking retribution from me using her as example / stories in my blogs and presentations.  Her term is going to globals and is fundraising.  Link at bottom.

If you want to know how this works out…

I have two adorable kids: Gabby (nee Gabriela and AKA Gigi) and Coco (nee Carolina).  They are 12 and 9 respectively and its likely you know this somehow.

I use my kids in presentations and blogs here and there.  I told you once how I had to use I’d’ve in a  blog to show Gigi/Gabby/Gabriela/Oldest that its possible; told you about their Twitter and Snapchat and Facebook (yuck) habits.  Told many stories about her and her friends using Twitter, texting each other in the same room, and their obsession with screens and Minecraft (still don’t get that one).  I often refer to them when debating generational differences.

As she told me last weekend – It’s payback time.

She has been participating in Destination Imagination competitions for the past four years quite successfully.  I used to be their team manager and am still surprised at the level of dedication and work these kids put into it.  Destination Imagination is a global competition where kids from all over the world have 2-3 months to design, build, and implement a “something” using STEM and arts principles.  Beyond the learning about science, physics, chemistry, arts, and more they get self-confidence.  And they learn that winning a medal or trophy requires work, not just showing up (sorry, ranting…)

Her team under my expert tutelage (rather in spite of it) won passage to state for the past three years (competitions are quite interesting, its amazing what 3rd-5th grade kids can do when motivated).  This year they also went to state where they competed against 18 teams from all over California and won the right to compete at Globals in Knoxville TN.  They came in second by 4 points and honestly – kicked ass.  These kids are good and creative and committed.

In DI circles this is big.  Very big.  To give you a perspective: those 18 teams came from 9 regions and approximately 120 initial teams.  They placed 2nd in state by 4 points.  They worked their little fingers to the bones and were hyper creative to get there.  I’m very proud of those kids.  They are competing against the 100 best teams in the country and some 80+ teams from other countries in six different themes.

And now, the dreaded fundraising.

Costs almost $20,000 to take the entire team and materials to Knoxville.  There is no contribution from anyone other than the parents for this (they have written and signed letters to local foundations and business, gone knocking door to door, asked their school mates to contribute, and have other activities planned as well) and just three-four weeks to get as much as possible.  They are working hard to make this happen.

I promised I’d help, so here is my chance to pay her back for suffering my ribbing and exposing her secrets over the years.

Because Internet.  They setup a YouCaring site to collect money.  You want to encourage them to continue working hard and seeing results in exchange for that (and have some pocket change to spare)?


Gabby, my daughter (used to be Gigi – but kids grow and nicknames are not cute anymore daddy… yeah, kid… just wait until you start dating and you’ll see how Gigi was cute compared to the ones I have saved…) thanks you.  The Jazzy Snazzy Kitty Cats thank you (I don’t make the names, this is better than some others, trust me).

As I said – she made me do it… but I am also very proud.

disclaimer: seriously, you have no need or obligation to do this and of course no donation will change the course of the world or make me be nicer to you or your product.  If it did I am sure I’d get a sizable donation from Oracle (not a client) :-).  As much as I never ask for anything and this is only my second personal blog ever (first one celebrated Paul Greenberg’s 60th Birthday) I do apologize if you are offended or otherwise miffed.  Thanks for supporting me all these years and will go back to regular rantings on improper use of technology and whatnot next week (I’m deepening coverage of Analytics and Machine Learning – which are not the same y’all).

update: their team and others from the school district was also featured in the local news.

One Reply to “Personal: My Daughter Made Me Do This (But I’m Very Proud)”

  1. ” its amazing what 3rd-5th grade kids can do when motivated “, ” Beyond the learning about science, physics, chemistry, arts, and more they get self-confidence ” – real learning.


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