Last Updated Nov 9, 2010 3:44 PM EST
Here's a suggestion for all you empty nesters out there who miss your college students: Have dinner with them.
Last night, my husband and I ate dinner with our daughter Caitlin, who attends college 2,575 miles from us. We pulled this off even though we're in California and she's in Pennsylvania.
Caitlin called last night right before my husband and I were sitting down to dinner. Normally, I would love to chat, but I was starving and our Vietnamese rice noodle soup (Pho) was going to get cold.
Then I had an idea. I told Caitlin to call us on Skype. I pulled out my MacBook and set the laptop on the dinner table. My husband and I got to eat our soup, talk to Caitlin and see her on the computer screen.
We had a leisurely dinner and chatted for about 45 minutes with Caitlin, who shared her day with us and also pumped us for job-hunting strategies - she graduates from college in May.
The only downside, as far as Caitlin was concerned, was that she didn't get to eat one of her favorite meals.
My next goal is to have dinner with our son Ben, who is in college in Wisconsin. It's going to be harder, however, pinning him down for a dinner date.