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Kay in Cal

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Everything posted by Kay in Cal

  1. Hello! I haven't been active on the board in a while, but some old-timers may still be around who remember me. We are finally taking the leap and moving back east. I'm taking leave for a year, putting our household goods in storage, and we are going to devote that time to searching for our "forever home" while staying with our parents--my folks in Arlington and Delaware (they split their time between two homes), and my inlaws in Williamsburg, VA. We aren't planning on finding a place of our own until next spring--we are seriously thinking about the Charlottesville area. We'll be alt
  2. I was one of those who started homeschooling when my first was 2 years old. We were lucky enough to find a "young homeschooler" group that included many families with a range of children, and a few like us with only one youngster (my second son was born during that time). I loved having a supportive community of homeschoolers, even though we weren't "official" yet. I'm sure some of those families have left the homeschooling fold... but we're still here. Of course, our group didn't have a cost, nor was it drop-off... I can see how that might attract bargain-hunters. But I think
  3. Hmmm... my dh would wear it, he lives in tshirts. But he only wears black tshirts, so I'll have to rework the design... hmmm... --Kay
  4. I would ask... though since I just ordered a bunch of stuff today for my family (Yeah! Amazon Prime!) it may still legitimately be on the way.
  5. Winnie The Pooh -- 2 or 3 years old Mr. Popper's Penguins -- 3 My Father's Dragon -- 4 Moomintrolls -- 4 Wind In The Willows -- 4 Alice in Wonderland -- 5 Treasure Island -- 5 A Christmas Carol -- 6 The Hobbit -- 7 Tom Sawyer -- 7 Both my husband and I have done read alouds since our boys were very young, these are the ones I can think of right now. They pay attention surprisingly well and love to hear more. I think good reading skills (on the part of the adult, that is) make a huge difference. We do voices and read dramatically. My kids will stop me occasionally for a definit
  6. I really need some input here. We are considering sending my 9 year old son to a weight loss camp. The reviews online for many camps range from glowing to absolute hatred. Has anyone done this before? What was your experience? How did your child like it? Did it help with exercise/eating issues? Please PM me with info... thanks!
  7. Hmmm... from us, we probably spend about $200 per child at Christmas time. My dh also buys gifts throughout the year and stashes them in our closet--so the number grows. I'd say we come out with about 20 or so gifts per child, a couple of big ones, lots of books and media, plus stocking stuffers. We don't do "practical" gifts--ie, no socks, underwear, things that would have to be purchased anyhow. Grandparents also send us gifts--with three sets (my parents are divorced), they end up giving far more than we do, expense wise. I would guess there are $500 of additional gifts for each of
  8. Play kitchen was a hit when my boys were little, too. We bought a wooden one designed for pre-schools from Lakeshore. It was in primary colors, and got a lot of use! I was never a "girly-girl" as a child--I preferred Legos and Hot Wheels cars myself. Never had dolls. I did once buy a Barbie because all my friends seemed to like them, but she quickly was forgotten. I loved Playmobile! As an adult I'm still not a "girly-girl", though I do love a day at the spa and have developed a fondness for pink--it helps me find my stuff in a house with all males. Honestly, I think cheap toys
  9. On the Library thread, Amira talked about having only 100 books on paper, the rest digital. Has anyone else moved so drastically to digital successfully? I'm curious, because we have so many books. Less than we used to, but still 4000 or so. I loved when we finally got all the hundreds of old CDs scanned onto iPods. But books... would each family member need an e-reader? Can kids be trusted with them? My boys have had iPod nanos since they were 4, but those things are pretty hardy. Pretty much we all go to bed reading, and carry around a book to read during the day. I usually
  10. We've had several major purges, usually associated with major moves. Still... right now we have about 20 bookshelves full, floor to ceiling (I counted 2 half-height shelves as one full). The good news is, I think that's down about 6 bays from several years ago. I finally got rid of lots of old paperbacks, even though I do reread books. All the years worth of mysteries, romance novels, whatever... it all has been given away. We have kept mostly non-fiction, reference, hardcover fiction, and fiction books that we love that are old and out of print. Plus school books. I like having
  11. Blink The Empty Child/The Doctor Dances The Girl in the Fireplace The Sound of Drums/Last of the Time Lords The Beast Below Wow! That was really hard to answer. I keep thinking there are so many good ones I left off.
  12. We bought a couple of sets on sale as the mandatory "toy" gifts. Glad to know they were a good choice!
  13. I do want to have a dialog about security and privacy... I think privacy has been thrown out the window. I do believe that a pat-down that uses the flat of the hand to feel someone's genitals and between the buttocks is indeed agressively sexual in nature. That doesn't mean that the TSA agent is enjoying it. In fact, I would guess most of them find it intrinsically distasteful. But I stand by the accuracy of "grope". I don't think this debate is necessarily polarizing, or all smoke and mirrors. I think most people *who fly frequently* believe that the security is both invasive and probab
  14. :iagree: 10, 9, 11 definately I've seen a few of the older shows, but not enough to have opinions about the doctors... though I kind of like the weird brown curly-haired guy. Now, who are your favorite companions? And I'd like to get a shout-out for Captain Jack Harkness...
  15. Not all airports have them in place yet, or have them for every lane yet... some still use just metal detectors for some lanes. There is a thread at the link of where they have the scanners: http://www.flyertalk.com/forum/travel-safety-security/1138014-complete-list-airports-whole-body-imaging-advanced-imaging-technology-scanner.html
  16. My DH had a bad TSA experience on our last family trip, this would have been in July so it was before the "aggressive" pat-downs. He was pulled out of the normal line randomly, I guess, and asked to go through the scanner in the Richmond, VA airport. I personally would have a problem with strangers seeing my naked body, even virtually, and was quite nervous that I would be chosen for the scanner. I had already decided to ask to "opt out", but that was before the new "super-grope" pat downs. Of course, I wasn't selected. It was my husband who was scanned. He stepped into the scanner,
  17. Microscopes are also on super sale already... we're going to finally jump in and get the Ultimate Home Microscope, just in time for us to start Biology again next school year. But after some searching, I also found a 10% off coupon code which worked for me today (12-1-2010): WGIFT10 Any other favorites from Home Science Tools? I'm really looking forward to having a microscope... does that make me a crazy woman? I think my husband is baffled.:D
  18. Oh yes. Start there with the new series... but David Tennant will still be my favorite Doctor forever. :drool: IMHO, the older series are an acquired taste. I can watch them but only in small quantity--very campy.
  19. I love the Sinterklaas stories! When I was growing up we lived in Germany for a while, and we had St. Nicholas day... he'd leave toys and presents in your shoes, tucked in a bundle of sticks. The gifts were for the times you were good, the "switches" for when you had been bad. I also lived in Norway, and my carry over from then has been leaving out a bowl of porridge for the JuleNisse on the kitchen floor on Christmas eve.
  20. I forgot the "trash as we go"... we do that too (no wrapping paper lying around), and we also have a Pickle Gift. It gets opened before regular gifts, but after stockings.
  21. We have a very elaborate Christmas unwrapping tradition. After the stockings are opened (lots of little stuff to play with during the rest of the unwrapping), then opening the real gifts begins. First the gifts are distributed into piles next to each recipient--this allows us to balance the turn taking. Then we take turns: one person holds up a gift and announces who it is from (mom takes notes for thank you's later), then everyone in turn guesses what it might be (a tradition that goes back to an elderly aunt on my dh's side who has down syndrome and loves guessing games... we guess s
  22. I voted wrapped... though I think they are wrapped by the elves, not Santa personally. The only unwrapped gifts are in the stockings, which the kids are welcome to dig into first before we start the slow process of unwrapping gifts. Now I'm going to post another poll...
  23. :blush: Ummm... yeah... ummm... how 'bout them Chargers?? We just decided a couple of weeks ago (though it isn't "public" IRL), and of course some people have been too busy going to cool conventions and doing fabulous shows and stuff so haven't been able to haul their kids to my house to play D&D..... It's still a long time away, right? Plus, don't you need another place you can vacation on the East Coast?
  24. Fantasy Flight Games, a wonderful boardgame company, has a bunch of games on holiday sale. http://store.fantasyflightgames.com These are not really toy-store type games, but games that you would find at a "hobby games" store--many of which are history based. If you haven't ever played a serious board game, you might want to follow the links below to see what I mean. Some game gift suggestions from the sale: Beowulf, The Legend --- Fun game, follows the story of Beowulf exactly, usually $40, now $5 This is one of our favorite board games to play with our sons. They REALLY know
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