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Showing content with the highest reputation since 06/22/2018 in all areas

  1. 63 points
    Meet the newest hive member! She just missed having a 4th of July birthday by a few hours. She’s a little chunk at over 8 pounds!
  2. 61 points
    Dh had to take a placement test for college. He did horrible in school and only took a few classes in college, and pretty much failed all of those too. He was bright but a late bloomer(and young for his grade), watching my son I think he is bright w/ some difficulties with writing. His parents never expected much or encouraged, so he's had this stuck in his head that he's not very smart. Well, he needed to place into Calculus- he only ever took Algebra 25 yrs ago, he scored into Trig, just 8 points shy of a score high enough for Calc. His score on Reading and math were high enough to get him a request to join the Honor's program. He totally bombed his writing, like his son that is his weakest subject and he didn't realize he would have to write an essay(the practice test was multiple choice) and totally messed up. So, I worked with him and he wrote essay after essay and retook the test today and made a 7 out of 8! Now, he just has to retake the math portion of the test to get into Calculus, which I have no doubt he will be able to do easily. He's so proud and I'm so happy for him to get some external validation. This is a huge step for him to have the guts to go back to school, to finally have the courage and confidence- I think his dad's passing was an impetus that life is short, he should just go for it. Who knows where this will lead but I think this a great thing for him and even better that his job is paying for nearly all of it (and he should get aid for the remainder).
  3. 47 points
    Hi guys, I'm doing fine! Just haven't had time to login much here. Also, kinda overwhelmed with political stuff so I've been hiding a bit, kwim? 🙈 (omg, I just found there's emojis again!!!!!) I only have 4 more weekly chemo sessions scheduled! The end of chemo is in sight! & there's a chance we might end early as I'm just starting to show some peripheral neuropathy, a (usually temporary but sadly, very occasionally, permanent) side effect of this drug. Depending on how it progresses they sometimes decide to cancel the last few treatments. After chemo finishes I'll get a small break & then I will have a month of daily radiation treatments. I'm signed up for a BSc in nursing program starting in September. Registered for classes and everything!!!! Guys, I'm SO nervous about it! School! Full time! Being the ancient person in class! Will I be able to keep up? Eeeeek. 😓 Also the occasional - um, do I really want to do this??? What was I thinking, exactly??? lol I haven't paid my fees yet & technically right up to September I could defer my admission to January so I'm keeping that as an option just in case I really get cold feet or I just don't feel up to starting in Sep. Physically these second phase rounds of chemo have been easier. No nausea (but no taste or sense of smell either so everything is kind of meh) and other than the tiny bit of numbness starting I've been fine. Fatigue is starting to catch up to me (it's cumulative on chemo) but so long as I get a good night's sleep I'm managing ok. I walk every day and while my blood counts have been too low to go to group classes, I try to workout at home. Gotta keep dancing & doing a Zumba wiggle 💃 My eyebrows and eyelashes all fell out a couple weeks after I started this new chemo, but my hair is actually trying to grow. Think bald blonde baby crossed with a kiwi fruit & that's my very silly looking head right now. It's all good - just makes me laugh... Our new dog Olive continues to amuse me and keep me busy. She's got a bit of separation anxiety which I need to crash course fix before September as all of us will be in school or working then so she'll need to be alone for at least part of some days. And the old guy Darwin is still hanging on & reminds me to appreciate every day. I miss chatting with you all so I'll be checking in more frequently 🤗
  4. 45 points
    So, it's not a huge deal, but I applied for a scholarship. It was specific to disability and required an essay about how it's impacted my life and why I'm in school and the "end goal" so to speak and how those things interact with my disability. Found out today I won - $2k per year, but I'm in my senior year. It's a big deal to me. DH was proud because he's my eternal cheerleader. There will be no one else (parents, sibs, etc.) that I even bother to tell most likely because their reaction will be a lukewarm, "Congrats" and not understanding why any of this is important to me. But it was a big deal on two fronts - one because it was my writing, and two because it is hard for me to begin to identify as disabled and this is a step in the right direction of being positive about it instead of avoidance/sadness. KWIM?
  5. 39 points
    FB post reply: "I know, right! I was surprised this was in the AHG handbook because it sounds so weird. I'm so proud of my daughter who is the one who actually took the time to plan this and bring the supplies and everything. It wasn't perfect, but it really worked for the kids who had the patience for it. It's so cool how scouts can let our kids try new things like this and take on leadership roles!" That's not snarky, right? 😉
  6. 37 points
    Please go back and read your posts. Your stepson is not your son. They are two different people. Your son doesn’t have a weight problem, but that doesn’t make it fair to keep comparing your stepson to him in such a negative way. The boys aren’t biologically related to each other in any way. Your son is naturally slim. Your stepson isn’t. They have different appetites and different attitudes toward food. I doubt your stepson will ever be slim like your son, and I do understand that you worry about his health, but he’s reaching an age where he needs to make these decisions for himself. If he is still asking for your help, that’s different, but if he’s not, please stop comparing him with your own son and just try to accept him for the kind and sweet young man he is. His weight doesn’t define him as a person.
  7. 35 points
    I have more than one friend. I don't compare them. Some of them have husbands, I don't compare them to mine. I have 11 children. They are individuals and I do not compare them. Because it doesn't matter what the coulda woulda shoulda be is, if they are or are not, they need me to love them where and how they are. Not where or how their sibling is or was at their age or how I was or their father was or the other kids we know are or whatever might be normal. NO ONE needs that comparison at home. They do it enough in their own heads. We don't need anyone we love and who loves us to tell us how stupid our choices are or how fat we are or what we need to do to compare better to how we should be. We don't need it because the entire world is primed and waiting to beat us and our children's hearts and souls to crap. For the love of God, let our family be our respite from the beatings of the world and the fickleness of life.
  8. 34 points
  9. 33 points
    Ok. Please hear this in the gentlest tone possible. I have not read the entire thread because I only got to the 4th page before I couldn't read anymore. First of all (((hugs))) to you, Scarlett. It is so difficult to watch someone close to you struggle with addiction and feel helpless in the face of it. Clearly, that is what you are dealing with here. If he has been checked by the doctor and there don't seem to be any underlying physical causes to his being 100 lbs overweight at 17 then you are looking at addiction. It isn't a character flaw, it isn't a deficiency, it is a disease. Food addiction is a tricky thing because unlike drug addiction, alcohol addiction or porn addiction you can't go cold turkey. You have to keep the addictive substance in your life. A person's relationship to food is highly individual. Your naturally thin son, who sometimes forgets to eat, has a casual relationship with food. Food, to him is fuel, and sometimes he forgets to refuel. Your step-son, clearly has a different relationship to food. You say he has not been in a stable home for most of his childhood? Unfortunately, it sounds like he has been in a home that was chaotic and he didn't feel safe & loved. Every person wants to feel safe and loved. Guess where he turned for comfort? Where he turned to feel love? You got it. Food. It may sound like I am exaggerating to someone who doesn't have this relationship to food, but there have been studies that show eating can release the same "happy hormones" in our brains as hugs from parents or even sex. Your step-son wasn't getting the unconditional love he needed from any of his parental figures, but he was getting it from food. It was always there. It didn't care what else was going on. It consistently made him feel good. If he felt a little bad later about eating so much? Oh well. You are asking him to give up or change what has always given him comfort and security. This is the kind of thing that counseling is for. Getting to the root of addiction and finding healthier ways to meet the emotional needs of the child (who is almost no longer a child.) You say you were in a marriage previously that was mostly bad for years. Why didn't you leave sooner? Because the issue was complicated, right? You had to decide for yourself when it was time to break away from those unhealthy/ dangerous habits and go forward. It is the same for your step-son. No one else could make you change. No one on the outside, no matter how concerned they were for you, could force you to end the relationship. No one else has the right to judge you for your choices in that relationship. It is the same for your step-son. So here are my recommendations. They are free so you can take them for what it is worth. 1. His weight is not your business. You can't bully, shame, cajole, mother, smother or educate someone out of an addiction. All you can do is love him. Not a single comment to him or to Dh for that matter, if Dh is going to pass on your concerns to Dss about his weight or his eating habits. It is so hard. You will feel like your tongue has holes in it from biting it. 2. Give him a soft place to land. He needs to replace years of conditioning that food is his only comfort & security. There will be good days and bad days in the process. Your job is not to fix him, or change him; your job is to love him. 3. Go to counseling. Please. Find some place that will work with him individually and with all of you as a family. You need a shared language about this issue. You need some direction in neutrality. I know you think that he doesn't know that you are so irritated by the issue of overeating, but believe me, he does. Counseling will help you, as a family, know how to support Dss in breaking the food addiction. 4. Continue to do the great job you have started in getting him medical help. This is going to be a lifetime journey of retraining deeply entrenched neural pathways and finding what works best for him physically & emotionally. Continue to help him find health professionals who really listen to him and support him. Be behind him 100% if you come across a medical health professional who is dismissive or unwilling to treat the issue as a whole rather than eat less/ exercise more. For the milk issue: I would buy a gallon/ kid each week. One for each of them. That gives your son the 2 big glasses/ day you want him to have, and your dss can choose to drink his all in one day and buy more or make it last. For cooking? What I do if I think the kids are going to go through the milk before I get to cooking with it is measure out whatever I need & put it in a mason jar or other container that says "Don't touch!" I hope things get better, Amber in SJ
  10. 32 points
    IME a boy in his upper teens who is hungry, doesn't realize it, and needs his mother to tell him that he needs to eat is less normal than a teen who can drink a gallon of milk in 24 hours.
  11. 30 points
    From McSweeney's. If you are a woman and have been to the doctor in the past 10 years, or have been avoiding it for the past ten years for this exact reason, you may appreciate this: https://www.mcsweeneys.net/articles/diagnosis-female
  12. 30 points
    But they are two entirely different people. I really wish you would stop comparing them all the time. It’s so unfair to your stepson. Your son is naturally slim. He has never had a weight problem. Your son skips meals because he’s not hungry, not because he has super amazing willpower. He walks 15,000 steps a day because he enjoys being active, not because he’s intentionally struggling to get extra exercise. Your stepson is not your son. He’s HUNGRY. He isn’t as naturally high-energy like your son. He isn’t naturally slim. You need to stop acting as though your stepson should be living your son’s lifestyle because what comes naturally to your son would require massive effort and dedication from your stepson because those things don’t come naturally to him.
  13. 30 points
    I can’t believe this is happening, again. No, wait, yes I can.
  14. 30 points
    Every time I read your posts, I wonder if the things you want and need are ever going to be a priority. Seriously, I understand about the dental work, but I’ll bet some of it can wait. Your dh can get the truly painful stuff fixed and do the rest a bit at a time. Because you’re in pain, too, every day. It’s emotional pain, but it’s still pain. I can feel your stress as I read your posts. I think it is way past time to tell your dh in no uncertain terms that you’re done being the doormat and that your needs matter just as much as his do. It’s time for him to start prioritizing you in the same way that you have prioritized him all these years. Your dd needs to go to that preschool. Your dh has to work with you to make that happen, because you already know that he’s not going to suddenly change and start being a big help with the kids. He’s a grown man. He can manage to not spend money on unnecessary things. He is a husband and a father, not a single guy, so his own wants can’t always come first. I feel so badly for you. It sounds like you feel helpless. 😞
  15. 29 points
    But that’s the point right there, Scarlett! I know what it’s like to be like your son. I’m the same way. And it’s easy to stay slim when you don’t consciously feel hungry. But I have a close friend who told me that she has trouble losing weight because she thinks about what she’s going to have for breakfast when she is getting ready to go to sleep at night, and while she’s making breakfast she is already thinking about snacks and lunch, and then she’s thinking of dinner and dessert. She said she thinks about food almost all the time. And it’s awful because she feels guilty about it. She feels weak because she keeps thinking about the food and she feels guilty when she overeats or makes poor food choices. Think about that. Think about how hard it must be for your stepson to always feel hungry, yet also feel awful about being 100 pounds overweight, and feel guilty about thinking he doesn’t have enough willpower. Your son doesn’t have those cravings. I’ll bet you don’t have them, either. And that’s why you can’t keep comparing your son and your stepson, and it’s why you can’t understand what your stepson is feeling and why losing weight is such a terrible struggle for him.
  16. 28 points
    No. No no no. You know I like you and consider you an online friend, but on this topic you’re just so wildly off base. It’s not the behaviors that are the root, it is the biological systems underpinning those behaviors. The behaviors are just symptoms of the real problem, which is the metabolic or even emotional issues that are driving the bodies to wildly different responses in the same food environment. I have two girls who are almost the same age and are completely different - one is small and skinny, one is tall and heavy. They are different, right down to their sleep schedules and actual bone size. They live in the same family, do the same activities, and eat the same food. But one is overweight and one is not. It’s NOT their choices, this has been so since they were breastfed infants by the same mama (me!). Their biology differs, and it affects their bodies and even hunger cues in different ways. And it’s not always the bigger girl who is eats the most, either.
  17. 28 points
    That's financial and emotional abuse.
  18. 27 points
    My father is naturally active - he actually cannot sit still for more than 30 minutes- and has been slim his entire life. He eats healthy balanced meals that stepmom prepares, but also cake or donuts and chocolate every day (no exageration) and has an after dinner snack of a packet of peanuts, crisps or biltong with his drink every evening. He has the good habit of always sitting down at a table when he eats or drinks and he usually does not consume anything while distracted by TV or computer. He also follows very regular mealtimes and coffee breaks every day. If you arrive at 3pm, he and stepmom will be sitting down for their afternoon coffee and cake. You can bank on it. For most of his life he has seen people that are overweight as lacking in willpower - they should just move more and eat less...because when he feels his pants are tight he cuts the peanuts for a week and the weight drops again. He is critical of what they are doing to their health and how they should know better and he does call them lazy or slobs. I have never been skinny - even as a very active child. Despite very strict dieting and exercise regimes that I have followed for months at a time, it takes ages to loose and effort to maintain a constant weight. I have been overweight for most of my adult life. My step siblings are tall and slim. They fall in the forget to eat camp, especially when stressed. Bio siblings are at least a foot shorter on average. My sisters work hard at maintaining their weight and are in normal range, but are curvy. We are in the comfort eating camp. They have been married since I was 18 (both their spouses passed away, so only one family home) and stepmom has never said anything to me directly although their was a phase when she mentioned her healthy food choices quite a lot. After I called him out on his insensitive comments to me many years ago, my father has bit his tongue, but I still felt judged for my weight. I am 50 this year and a few weeks ago, I was staying over and declined the cake once again, and he actually commented on how hard that must be to do every time! He also made a comment about some people having fast metabolisms and others slow. Then later we were dressed for my cousin's funeral and waiting at the door, and my father called me 'a beautiful woman'. Spontaneously. For the second time in my life (he may have said so at my wedding)! I dont think he realises it, but it has meant so much to me to finally feel that he acknowledges that I do make an effort and that it is hard. I feel that my accomplishments are accepted as part of the "whole me" package and not, "in spite of her weight". I wish that acceptance for your stepson.
  19. 27 points
    Women in Saudi Arabia can finally drive. It’s not everything, but it’s something wonderful. https://www.aljazeera.com/news/2018/06/saudi-women-hit-road-driving-ban-lifted-180623215156740.html
  20. 25 points
    This makes me want to cry for both of them. Because that sounds like such a tense household. Over what? Fat? Here's so much worse in the world than some fat. Or even a lot of fat. And you keep saying that final sentence in dozens of different ways as though that will make it true. But it just isn't. I'll say it again, quit comparing them and quit making his weight your issue. There is no happy result for anyone from those two things. If it's making you this unhappy, that kid has got to be absolutely miserable.
  21. 24 points
    All of my kids are twigs. As in struggle to be 125lb at 6'2". You've seen pics on my FB. Those kids? I kid you not, they will each eat an entire meat pizza and ask for ice cream afterward and an hour later need a snack. If I allowed milk as a beverage, I have zero doubt they'd each go through a gallon. (As a general principal, I've never bought drinks with calories bc I wanted their calories to come from food and for our limited budget to go to actual food. So I rarely buy milk or juice for drinking uses.) Respectfully...what is normal at this point in life for your bio son doesn't set the bar for the rest of the world or even other people inside your own house. It just doesn't and no amount of your trying to make it so will ever change that.
  22. 24 points
    Too much! This thread did me in! After reading it I broke down and bought two tickets for Hamilton in DC for my 23 yo dd and I. We both love it, know all the lyrics and have been entering the lottery every day. She has been living at home this last year. She goes on active duty in the Army in August and will be in San Antonio. Last year my dh was diagnosed with ALS with frontal temporal dementia. The last 18 months have been really hard and the future will be harder. And this thread made me decide that we should do this and make a lifetime memory for both of us!!!! Now I just have to schedule a caregiver, but I have a month to figure that out.
  23. 24 points
    You don't need his permission, you can just do it. All by yourself.
  24. 24 points
    I always have the shocking things to say, but here it is: You can't trust your DH. I would want him to get the dental care, because people can have serious health problems from serious bad teeth, and you've mentioned he has other health problems from not taking care of himself. If he's finally ready to work on anything, I'd want him to. I think you need to get yourself and your children to a location with decent public schools, so that you can work out your home and marriage and parenting stuff while they are educated effectively. If that means DH driving farther to work, and/or if you have to work while the children are in school...it may be time to put your foot down for your needs and your children's needs. It takes a really long way to raise children to adulthood, when you feel defeated, exhausted, and unsupported the whole time. Get out there and build up some systems for yourself. I am not saying "leave your DH." I'm saying you might be almost ready to consider that he should have to work around you and the kids, and less vice versa.
  25. 23 points
    <In which Tibbie writes a book.> OP, take it or leave it, any of it, this is in the context of your thread but it's not as much about you as it is for the board in general. I'm going to tell the story because according The United Way's ALICE report, half the nation is living in poverty and the families are very short on resources or options. They are making it on a day to day basis. With a statistic like that, some of those families are certainly reading here right now, and this is something about which I know, so here goes: Every place has something. I live in a hole in the wall, too, if I don't want to drive half an hour (I am always driving 30 to 45 minutes). I might not like the locals or click with them, but there are mother's day out programs at churches, a little league, a (small) library with (lame) activities, children playing at the broken down park, a Boys and Girls Club, and a public school system. Over the years, I built community for our family by getting out there, for everything but the public school. We went to the grocery store literally three days per week when my kids were small, and met the cashiers and department workers so that I could stop to speak to them - they thought that was weird because that's not how people live here, being sociable like that or shopping so often, but it DID work. After some time, people would greet my children by name and make little inside jokes with them, invite us to visit their church, whatever. As my little boys grew up to be teens, they were offered jobs. We went to the library twice per week, even though it was just a little branch library, for the same reason: Hang out in the children's department, get to know the librarians and the readers of the community, over years. People knew my family without becoming our friends, that we knew of, but when my 18yo son had a life-threatening illness, he found out how many people knew him and cared about him, from his hours at the library. Some of my children worked at the library as volunteers and then paid employees, and my teens also got jobs as precinct clerks and judges on the recommendation of the librarian who had been their friend for 10 years. We took cookies to the fire department every summer and asked for a tour, and remembered them (as well as the district police department) on every Boxing Day, which is not observed here but I was forcing traditions. Then, on the occasions when we needed emergency help, we had friends. Again, this is not typical here, there are no sidewalks and people are pretty fragmented, except for gathering around the school. But when we reached out, they were happy to meet a family from the community and form a friendship. I dressed my tiny children in their best, and washed their faces and combed their hair, and sent them to the homes of elderly ladies on our street, with little paper baskets of flowers, on May Day. That's not the culture here, and I wasn't sure it was a good idea, but other attempts at meeting the neighbors had failed. We met one nut who had to be avoided for awhile, and two beautiful, long-term friends. As a result of that success, we worked hard at being more visible on our street, playing in the front yard as much as the back, walking and biking a lot, just letting people know us even though it took years for most of them to reciprocate. One of my forced traditions was Martinmas - we made lanterns and went for a lantern walk, and talked about our responsibilities to our neighbors. We talked about what Jesus said when asked, "Who is my neighbor?" We helped out if we saw a problem with anyone. DH is very handy, and pitched in on roofing, electrical repair, digging out a clogged ditch; if he saw an older person, especially, out working, he'd grab his tools and lend a hand. (As with my son's illness and the library support, we didn't know we'd made friends on our street until a tree fell on our house, during Hurricane Ike. We weren't home, but when we came home we saw the tree on our house and all our neighbors waiting for us. They knew our names and helped us out; we had no idea they knew who we were or cared about us.) We went to the local dentist instead of driving to the bigger practice 30 minutes away, took canned goods to the community center which is a resource for elderly here, our teens volunteered at the Boys and Girls Club, we kept taking chances on neighborhood kids coming over to play (sadly, nothing but fails in that regard, too much drugs and robbery and instability), just whatever was going on, I tried to keep my game face and give it a chance. I usually didn't like it but that's not what I wanted to model, so we kept trying. This is not a Mary Poppins Perfect post. It has not been easy to live here, and we realized fairly shortly that we'd made a mistake when we bought this house. It's a rum place to live, it just is. Our neighbors are under-educated and underemployed, people are on the coarse and vulgar side, the public school is NOT good, our crime rate is not good, and I really have listed pretty much everything there is for children here. Boys and Girls Club, broken down park, little league, library, poor churches, and the school. But we couldn't move away, because of the housing bubble bursting - every home on our street saw its value fall SO far that we were all underwater until literally last year, when most of us were able to refinance! Nobody could move. Smarter, wiser parents would have seen at least some of this coming, I think. It's not being a super mom, I just made a decision that where a child LIVES is his HOME and he will have to take whatever comes, whatever it means to be from there. Because everyone deserves to be from somewhere. We have had serious hard times* because of this decision but at this point, I would not trade my kids' experience for a childhood in the middle class small town that has everything. As we face this era in which I feel like I see a lack of love in our country, and a lack of willingness to really get to know people who are not exactly like ourselves, I am GLAD that my children grew up with Shakespeare and Latin at home and the township we live in, as a daily contrast. They are not snobs. They've made wonderful friends. They've helped others and been helped by others. They are comfortable with diversity of education, income, race, and religion, because we have all of those differences represented here, and that's better, for raising a family, than an upper middle class life without diversity. If I could go back and move us to a progressive city instead of this, I would. In a minute. But that was never an option, so faced with what my options were, I don't really have regrets. THIS is what I mean by having a knack for living poor, in a poor place. I was up for this, because I was going to give my children a place to be from, if I had to FORCE it, and because I had no other choice. We couldn't move. And honestly, we had lived places a lot worse than this, before we bought this house. So between homeschooling and "trying too hard" to force community, and driving 30+ minutes as the kids grew older, I could make do...and then, I didn't know this would happen...my children began to earn top scholarships to colleges for their academic and leadership skills, and received needs-based aid because of our income level AND our zip code. The local colleges know what it means to be from here yet achieve what they did. When I say that people don't have a knack for it, I mean that if you try it for several *years* and every member of the family is miserable, isolated, finding their social and hobby needs woefully mismatched with their ability to leverage the local resources...at some point, face it. There's nothing wrong with you if you need more people and community backup! That's normal! If shifting division of labor and changing education methods and moving 30 to 40 minutes away means that you can REACH what you NEED, see a financial counselor and make a plan. Get to where you feel at home, and let home be a place that a child is from and not just the place that you all have to get away from all the time...if it's possible. And I am mentioning all of this because it sounds possible to me. It sounds like your family could reach a level of working together toward a plan, in which you could move to a place with more resources for your family without jeopardizing your husband's job. Now, in the meantime, for anyone to which this applies: Start googling where you are, for anything you might have missed. If there's an active Sunday school in a church that is doing good in the community and whose beliefs don't offend you, take the kids. If there's a storytime at the library, go. (If there's not one, volunteer to do it.) If there's a church with a food pantry or a community center, take a sack of canned goods every week. Go to the broken down playground, at the same time of day so people can start expecting you. If there's 4H or little league or anything you can afford (or that has funding for those in need), give the people running it a chance to prove that they are kind and accepting. Make them prove they are NOT, before you keep your kid out. If you think the school is okay, give it a try. All efforts combined, might be enough to limp along until you can move. But if it turns out you can't move, maybe you'll have made some inroads on "building" community for yourself. And if the time comes that the kids get older and can tolerate the 30 to 45 minute drives, and you have a car and can afford gas, then get out there, if that's all it takes to get to scouts, choirs, sports, homeschool support, whatever. It will be worth the driving. *The hard times were my own loneliness - and fatigue from the faking and forcing until it worked, despair at the coarseness and crime, helplessness at the poverty, and my kids being looked down on by teens from wealthier local areas. For example, my son's girlfriend broke up with him because he has never traveled, lives in this township among poor people, is not fashionably clothed - no athleisure (I'm not kidding) - and has to work! He is not sophisticated, she said. The truth is that he is very well educated and headed to college, and will probably live and work in a European city that's a touch more sophisticated than anything in this state, but for now he's just a "poor kid" from "here." And my boys also had to work in a dangerous neighborhood; there was nothing that they weren't exposed to or threatened by. Since they survived and learned and grew, we are thankful for the benefits of the challenge. But you know what, ds#4 has a chance to earn money through his art and music instead of going to work here, and you'd better believe the whole family is helping him try! Again, no rose-colored glasses or practically perfect parents.
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