My oldest daughter, Chandler, turned 16 recently, and today she passed her driving test (not pictured above) and now has her driver's license in hand.

(This was actually her 2nd attempt...squirrels are protected during driving tests...who knew?)

Now that she has her license in hand, there is one thing I wish I could give her as a gift...but I can't.  And that gift is my 30 years of driving experience.  Now, don't get the wrong impression, my daughter is a very smart and careful driver, but there are thousands of blind spots, dumb drivers, and unique road scenarios that you just can't learn from books or simulators.

Since I cannot connect some sort of magic jump drive full of this experience to my child's brain, I have researched some of more common mistakes made by young drivers.  According to the top ten are as follows:

  1. Distracted driving
  2. Taking too many risks (or as I call it...the being invincible syndrome)
  3. speeding
  4. too many people in the vehicle
  5. driving under the influence
  6. tailgating
  7. not being buckled
  8. handling emergencies, like hydroplaning or braking suddenly (here comes that experience factor)
  9. Driving drowsy
  10. Choosing the wrong car (parents are many times to blame for this

Of course, in trying to make sure your kid(s) are safer drivers, do not forget a very important factor - daily prayers to the Man upstairs to keep your children safe.

I just pray that the Man upstairs keeps her safe