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About Faith-manor

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    Hive Mind Level 5 Worker: Forager Bee

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  1. Hi, I'm not really around anymore. But someone pinged me about this thread, so I thought it would be fun to drop in and make the update. We began homeschooling after our second child developed a health condition that required him to stay home, fairly isolated, in order to minimize exposure to viruses and bacteria. We homeschooled DD for three years, and then I had gone to work for a private school. But on doctor's recommendation, we pulled her out, and began homeschooling ds as well. That followed by homeschooling our next two so that by the time eldest ds was healthy and could have resumed school, we were on a roll, and the kids were way ahead of their PS peers since our school districts are very poor academically. DD was ready for high school, and we couldn't afford private. So we stuck with it through high school for all of them. We used WTM with a heavier basis in science and mathematics than is typical with a strictly classical base. So maybe lighter on literature than recommended, but all the kids had calc 1, and four years of high school science with all of them taking AP exams in one science and one history. We also used some dual enrollment though not a lot because we don't live close to a good community college or university so the commuting was a huge issue. They also had math and science electives in addition to the core so things like intro to engineering, astronomy, A&P, just depended on their interests. Eldest DD has a degree in chemistry, paramedic license, and EKG certification. She is married, and has one child, our dear grandson. Due to health reasons, she does not work as a medic anymore, and doesn't seek any full time work related to her chem degree. She does work per diem three or four times a month as an EKG tech to supplement their incomes. Due to health, she will never work full time again, and sadly, probably also will not have any more children. But, she's really pretty happy, we adore our son in law, and our grandson is so much fun. Grandparenting is way better than parenting! They don't live near us though - Huntsville, AL. So visits are sporadic. We are going for a week in June, and can hardly wait for that. Eldest Ds just graduated with double majors in English/Writing concentration , and German. He is seeking work first as an editor or writer but has also applied for tech writing. The key for him is to find a job much further south. He suffers terribly in the cold with the arthritis in his leg from the crushed femur due to our car accident. He has offers from two newspapers in this state, and may get an offer this week for tech writing. The tech writing job is near DD and her family, so not his ideal job but in a great location and has full health benefits. If it is offered, we think he'll take it. Bird number two flying away. MIddle ds has one more year until he graduates college. He switched his major from freshwater science/ecology to anthropology/archaeology with a minor in history. He has been working on his Danish language skills and will be able to take the language test in the hopes of being able to attend grad school in Denmark. It will be really tough to have him so far from home. However, it is a lifelong dream of his to live in Denmark for a while - dh's paternal family is Danish - so will be happy for him if that happens. Good reason for us to pack a bag and head across the ocean every year. Youngest Ds just completed his first year of college as an electrical engineering major. He loves it, and did very well. It was the weirdest year not having any child here full time. Breaks and holidays were a lot of fun though. They were also a challenge. This year with three in college at one time, it was too much financially to buy cars and insurance them for all three of them. So two lived in opposite directions of each other and MIchigan is a long state. Their colleges are 11 hours apart! It made for some interesting fetching of our boys for their breaks. DH was able to take vacation a couple of times to go get the one four hours from here while I headed north to ds at NMU. Eldest had his car so could do his own commuting. Honorary DD graduated from college the same year as our dd - I tutored her a LOT in high school, especially in math and science. She has a criminal justice degree with a minor in social work and ended up working for two years for the county helping to supervise kids in foster care who were also in trouble with family court. She really didn't like it, and burned out quickly. She is quite happy now working outside her field as a loan manager at a bank. Our niece, who is a year older than DD and whom we had custody of for an extended period and homeschooled, has struggled with her mental illness ever since leaving home. She is not doing well. Currently not homeless, but will be soon if she doesn't agree to take her meds and stick with a psychiatrist and therapist. It's a vicious cycle. Every time she starts doing better then she thinks she doesn't need meds and assistance anymore so stops it, spirals downward, loses her job, gets kicked out of her rentals, and the whole thing starts over again. Sigh....but there isn't anything we can do about it either. So our 4 despite health ups and downs for the two oldest are doing well. Honorary DD is great. She still calls us mom and dad, and we think of her as our girl. Just niece is doing so poorly. In other family news, I'll let you know since i'm not likely to drop in again for a good long while, I am taking another master's degree class this summer while I work. I love my job in community arts. MIL though is slipping fast. Neither of us think she'll be here two years from now, her doctors agree, and that's very upsetting. Our kids are really going to miss her. My mom is doing better, and will soon begin spending 5 months a year in France with my sister and her husband, and 7 months here, part of that visiting a month at a time with her grandkids who have settled. As soon as youngest ds graduates and doesn't need us to maintain residence for in-state tuition, we are heading south to better weather and an area with better health care options. My mom has agreed that since she'll be traveling so much, she is willing to have a bedroom/bath suite in our house. Since son in law is very likely to be in Huntsville for the long haul, we are looking at Tennessee. (Huntsville would be awesome but seems too swampy/humid in the summer.) Dh and I like the mountains, and there a lot of places we like close to GM facilities since he been given the offer to work from anywhere within a certain radius of GM offices. I am trying to convince dh to purge, purge, purgethis summer a little at a time so it isn't an overwhelming move when the time comes. I will be sad to give up my community arts job, but happy to be leaving this area so willing to go back to the drawing board for employment in the new location. We still have our 4H STEM club and rocket team. But, since I'm going to need to concentrate on readiness to move and getting this place up for sale during that last year we are here, we are only doing it for two more years, and then retiring from that. We'll have nearly 14 years in as 4H leaders at that point, and 13 of competitive rocketry. With me back to work, it has been HARD to juggle it. So I am actually breathing a sigh of relief to have an end date in sight. May 31st, 2021.
  2. Again, regional. This is not true in Michigan. I know of three children in Mid Michigan who would be dead - Dup 15Q kids - were it not for private foundations. St. Joseph's in Ann Arbor - Quarter million dollars. St. Jude's does a lot for these children, but aren't anywhere close and most kids end up in Ann Arbor. It took more than a week of our pastor's six month old seizing over 200 times per day to get the finances worked out through a foundation, and he almost didn't make it because of this. He's profoundly brain damaged from the wait. Please do not tell me I don't know what has happened to the people who live two blocks from me whose son I've done music therapy for. I was in the waiting room with them when the hospital billing department asked them how much money they had because Blue Cross Blue Shield would not pay, and it was too expensive of a treatment for the hospital to absorb without finding a payer up front.
  3. OOOOOOO, Lavender, mushroom risotto! That goes on the list for this week. Yummy yummy yummy
  4. I make lentil soup in the crockpot. Orange lentils (be generous with water because lentils really absorb), cumin, garlic, tumeric to taste, and some finely diced carrots. Slow cook. Serve with good bread, or in my case since I am allergic to wheat, I toast a Schar chiabatta bun and dip in it.
  5. I think it is an easy mistake to make though from the standpoint that in many states vaccinations are free through the county health department. It might be confusing. What she may not have understood is how rare it is to give out this shot series so it isn't a health department service, and of course immuneglobulin is not a vaccine. Most people would not be aware of how expensive those shots are. They are stupid for sure, keeping bats as pets! But I can see how someone could be unaware that rabies is not like the other vaccines. I doubt that many people who have never gone through cancer treatment with a family member on medicare would know that some chemo shots are $3500 a piece and not covered. We learned that the hard way with my mother's husband. Ya. After the bill on that first one, there were no more even though it was the best practice treatment for his cancer. I doubt that most people know that the 30 day course of treatment for infantile spasms which affects approximately 1200 babies per year, costs $750,000.000 (no, I did not make a mistake with those zeros. It averages $21,000 per injection). Most insurance companies will not pay it. The child dies without it. I think families are often entirely blindsided by health care costs when the diseases are not common. So I don't blame for the family for being flabbergasted.
  6. We don't have that here. But then our county has cut most of its services to the bone due to economic issues.
  7. She had it done a month ago at her annual check up.
  8. The whole thing is appalling. Their lack of judgment, the for profit cost of medicine in this nation, just everything. But, I do have to wonder this. They didn't confirm he had rabies until post mortem. So the hospital didn't know what he was dying of at the time. They let 25 people visit him in the ICU without knowing what he was dying of and if he was contagious. Is there some sort of liability for public health risk to the hospital itself? I mean, normally when there is the potential of a communicable disease that has not been identified, the patient is isolated, and only medical staff attend that person, maybe close family gets gowned, gloved, masked, and can go in. I am just wondering about this aspect. Definitely not a fan of how we do health care in the US. Sick of it actually. But, I'm slightly freaked out. Three days ago our cat caught a bat in the house. Dh wore gloves to retrieve it and seal it in a baggie to put in the trash since the ground is too frozen to bury it. But now my brain is feeling a little twitchy! The cat has been vaccinated, but it isn't like we the household humans have. Stupid bats!
  9. One niece adopted on my side, a nephew on dh's side, an aunt, a great grandmother, and a lot of friends who have adopted.
  10. I think its wrong. The job requires what it requires. I mean, she can negotiate all she wants, and HR may fall for it, but it creates a bad environment for everyone else on the project because they absorb the work/travel whatever it is that the job requires and that person doesn't do. It's happened numerous times in the IT companies dh has worked for, and always gone badly. That said, it will go down however it goes down. The people on the project who may end up kicked in the teeth by the decision likely have zero pull with management and especially so if this is a large corporation. So they'll either suck it up and take on all of her travel if she is hired, then start looking for jobs when that is no longer tenable, or let the ball drop and take the consequences such as refusing to do the extra work and getting fired for it. Dh wears business dress. It is way more expensive than my business dress. I get great deals on blouses, skirts, dress pants and jackets. I have a mix and match thing going on with dark colors and light tops so I don't have to own a huge amount, and two pairs of work shoes both of which I purchased for less than half the cost of Dh's two pairs of wing tips. He has six suits and rotates them, and good ones aren't cheap. His dress shirts have to be replaced regularly, and while he doesn't go through ties in terms of wearing them out, he has about 20 of these things because that's part of varying "the look" with the five suits....different color dress shirts, different ties. Dress socks for him are more expensive than the cheap trouser socks I wear with my pants or the black hose I wear with skirts when I'm not wearing tights for warmth. His overcoat was more expensive than mine. Most of my clothes I can manage without dry cleaning. His suits go in regularly. It might be easier if he wore business casual. However, he's also hard on his casual clothes. Seriously, he can't keep a polo for longer than six months before he's stained it in some wicked way that I can't find a chemical to combat without bleaching out the material. He stains khaki pants just by looking at them! And I can't figure out what on earth he does to his Bass loafers. He can take a brand new pair and make them into junk in record time. It's crazy. Meanwhile, I've got a pair of flats that I've owned for ten years and they are still in good enough shape to wear to work. Now that said, my job while requiring business dress, doesn't need the high end stuff. I can shop the clearance racks at Kohls and Penneys. He is higher up the food chain at a big, national company. He isn't an executive, but he can't go around in Haggar and Stafford either. So we have to buy mid-range name brand which ups the cost a good bit. He's a 40L not a 40R so we don't often see anything on clearance racks though I do try to hit Nordstrom Rack when he needs a replacement suit.
  11. ((((HUGS)))) I have not words of wisdom, just many sympathies for you and ds. Hang on mama. Hopefully an opening will pop up soon.
  12. Unsinkable brings up a great point that I had not given though to, and that is the situation with large amounts of mac and cheese. It really is difficult to keep from getting dried out. Most pasta served like this is cold pasta salad. The sauce keeps it moist, and chilling it doesn't dry it out so fast. Maybe roasters of au gratin potatoes would be easier, or something like a cheesy, tater casserole.
  13. We never deliberately planned for one time or another. I can honestly say I wish we'd put off getting pregnant in the fall so there were no summer births or last trimester. It was 105 degrees outside, and we didn't have central air. I sat in the doc's office one day after my weekly check for like two hours post appointment just reading a book. Finally one of the receptionists came out and asked if I needed a ride or wasn't felling well or something. I said, "Look at me. I don't have any air conditioning. Take pity." She laughed and said, "Read away." I stayed until pretty close to closing. With middle ds, I did the last trimester over summer, and when he was born in early September, it was nearly 100 degrees which admittedly is quite unseasonably warm for Michigan, but then again, Michigan is known for delusional weather patterns....but I digress. We had air, but just going out to the car to go to the doctor was misery. I don't do heat well. I do cold much better. The other ones were February and May. We went to the hospital in the middle of a snowstorm with C, and then came home from the hospital when a tornado was going through with A. The tornado didn't have any warning, and we narrowly avoided it. We could actually see it a couple of miles ahead, and turned around speeding wild and crazy in the opposite direction, holding up in another town for a while and hoping my sister had gone to the basement with our kids. So, basically, I am thrilled to not be having more babies. I don't want to imagine what else this state can come up with, "Oh look, Faith is going to go into labor, let's toss out the very first Tsunami on Lake Huron in the history of the world!" or worse. I don't think we have any volcanoes in this state, but if I were pregnant, I'm sure mother nature could make one on the spot! I vote for avoiding last trimester in the summer if you can, and otherwise just letting babies happen when they happen.
  14. Anyone who doesn't have the ability to think clearly on the topic. If feeling really emotional and unable to quickly figure out the best thing to say, then stick with the above even if you are a close relative. Don't let bad stuff slip out of your mouth even if well intended. Usually with spouses you really do know what to say or do because you know that person's personality so very well. For my dh, it is "don't talk, just let me lean on you for a while". Making him converse is really painful for him if he is grieving or going through something tough. That's where "Sorry for X" works well because it isn't really a conversation opener and has no expectation attached. I am a "let me talk about this person", and I totally censor myself so that I don't talk with someone who isn't prepared, which is basically everyone really. I've found that very few people in my area (could be a problem of local culture) can get outside their own heads, their own situations and just listen without judgment. So I suck it up and don't talk except to my PTSD therapist who is worth her weight in gold and platinum! Literally, outside of hubby and kids, I no longer have any expectation of true compassion or caring from other humans. But everyone should take that as an indictment of the church we attended at the time, and my scarring from that, and not an indictment of everyone else on planet earth. I am aware, intellectually, that not everyone is terrible at this. Really. I just got hurt so badly that I'm probably going to be forever guarded. Sometimes I wish I knew Arcticmama, Rosie, Liz, and Carol in CA, and others on this board because I imagine them to be super, sweet, comforting people IRL.
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