Notes from my Minivan: More than 5 Minutes of Fame


I spend a lot of time in my minivan driving four kids here and there, there and here. It’s one of the few places where I can actually think, sometimes. These are my thoughts, scribbled on napkins and receipts—a look into raising kids and living in Lake County.

Note: all opinions belong to me and only me and do not reflect those of our advertisers, partners, or other writers.

notes from my minivan

Notes from my Minivan: More than 5 Minutes of Fame

It has been a weird summer so far, not just for us personally, but I see it around me all the time. People are starting to feel a little less authentic, a little more on camera, all the time. It’s like everyone is waiting for their five minutes of fame. Everyone thinks they will be the next internet superstar, and all it will take is just one more shot, one more video, one more…..

I’m sure you’ve all seen this image, or a similar image on your social streams at some point:

Notes from my Minivan: More than 5 Minutes of Fame
Photo Credit: Buffalo Grove Park District

We all have seen them. Whether it was this one from a baseball field or one from a hockey rink, the message is the same: let the kids be kids, play for fun and just enjoy the moment. Aside from the truly few sensations made famous by accident overnight, most people work at it for years before making it big, and to them being big may just be being recognized at a local park. The truth is, the majority of us are not going to be famous musicians, reality stars, or athletes.  How much more rewarding would life be if we stopped trying? Reality TV, the Internet, and social media have made us all think we have a chance of making it big…but really, very few of us do, and what could we accomplish if we put that energy elsewhere?

  • None of us are going to be the MVP for the MLB this year, but you can be the MVP to local kids by helping coach a team at your local club. Or volunteering for an afternoon at Beacon Place playing ball with the kids and being a positive role model.
  • Most of us are not going to make it to the final round of The Voice. But all of us can support those that are trying to make a living with their voice by going to local shows.
  • Most of us will not publish bestselling books, but we all can help a child learn to read by volunteering with the United Way of Lake County Reading Success Program or donating books (or time) to Bernie’s Book Bank.
  • You may not win Survivor, but you can take your kids camping and hiking, and teach them survival skills.
  • You won’t win So You Think You Can Dance, or be asked to join Dancing with the Stars, but you can instill a love of music and movement in your children through local classes and shows.
  • You’re not competing on a national cooking show, but you can enjoy the simple pleasure of making a meal from scratch and sharing it with people you love. You can take it further and share your bounty with others through local food pantries.
  • You’re not America’s Next Top Model, but you are your children’s model. Love yourself, put on the swimsuit and splash with them in the pool.

Find something you are passionate about and do it. Foster it. Show your children that passion comes from within, and success can be just enjoying what you are doing.

We can keep grasping for those five minutes of fame, or we can live authentically and enjoy a lifetime of happy returns.

Notes from my Minivan: More than 5 Minutes of Fame
About Melissa Haak 626 Articles
Melissa is mom to 4. She used to dream of traveling the world, now she dreams of a clean kitchen. She can be found on most social media sites as @PBinmyHair because with this much hair and four kids, you're bound to find something in it.

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