I was about 7 years old when I first became aware of Presidential elections. My knowledge of things political up until then was limited to 1) knowing a song about Jimmy Carter sung to the tune of "My Bologna Has A First Name" and 2) knowing that you DO NOT sing that song in front of your military father.
Growing up, my parents were usually reserved with voicing their political opinions around us kids. My grandmother, on the other hand, was very vocal about her politics. I mean, when she was 7, women had just won the right to vote. This woman lived among generations of women who had known a time when they had no voice. And once she was old enough to vote herself, she did so with much vigor.
Though I am not as vocal about my political persuasion as my grandmother (a die-hard Republican who had an elephant collection would only sit in the right hand pews at church), my current leanings are not a secret to my children. My kids have accompanied myself and my husband to our polling place and have literally witnessed who and what we've voted for. We view voting as both a right and a duty and exercise that right with regularity.
After we come home from voting, I will eagerly watch the election results with an electoral college coloring map (thanks, Allison) with Cara. The same girl who chose to study Susan B Anthony last year, citing Ms. Anthony as her personal hero. A girl who just told me on the way to school that she is hesitant to turn 18 and be able to vote because "it's a lot of responsibility." I am in awe of how, at eleven, she has a better appreciation for that sense of responsibility than a number of people who have been voting for years.
So, go vote, people. It may be the only exercise you get today!