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    ds--college graduate (philosophy); dd--graduate school (comparative literature)
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  1. I asked the questions because I know more people who did not have family in the South who definitely know that their ancestors held slaves (and some who know that their families profitted greatly from the slave trade or slave labor) than people I know of in the south. While at the beginning of the Civil War, states in the south had more slaves than states in the north, that is a very small snapshot of the horrid situation. Slavery was (and is) a problem irregardless of one's geographical location. And, the impact of slavery often goes far beyond the location of where I slave is actually being held.
  2. Having an exiting, non-expired passport IME does nto change the processing time for a passport. Timing is unpredictable.
  3. I am glad you had a great time! And--glad your friend was able to retrieve her passport.
  4. I know very little about my paternal granmother's ancestory. From what little I do know it is likely that she had ancestors who owned slaves in Alabama. I wonder why you asked if the question to people whose families are from the South. I know people who have never had a family member live in the South who are certain that their ancestors were slave owners. And, I have a friend who is Canadian who is certain that her family fortune stems from slave trade and slave labor.
  5. I am in the same spot. I recently went to a small, local shoe store where the worker was in her 60s and very knowledgeable. She sold me a pair of casual shoes that are very comfortable and a pair of Birkenstock inserts to wear in flats. She said that they could make a big diffference when wearing flats. I have not gotten used to the inserts yet and don't know how well I am going to like them. But, the shoes are so comfortable I will be heading back to look for more options.
  6. One thing I would consider is how is the McChicken and fries being eaten? Is it eaten in the car (along with a soda to drink)? This is a very different experience than sitting at a table for a meal. If a family is accustomed to the taste of fast food and intimidated (or overwhelmed) by cooking, a transition can be stopping at the fast food establishment and getting a large nugget order (and perhaps fries)--you have to look at the menu and determine whether this is cheaper than getting kids meals but often it will be. Then, take that home and put it on the table for everyone to share family style. Supplement this with a jar of applesauce, a can of peas, carrot sticks, or whatever is available. Drink water or milk with the meal. You can even have ice cream or some other "treat" for dessert. But, this is getting people in the habit of sitting at a table, talking to each other, and trying a variety of foods. After a while, it becomes more and more obvious how much time the "quick stop at the drive-through" is taking and how much that is costing.
  7. My two are relatively close together, but my siblings and I are six years apart. I was 12 and sister was six when the youngest was born. As an adult, I am much closer to my sibling who is 12 years youner than I am than the one who is six years younger; we just have more in common. I also know siblibings who were close in age who are not close; they have very different personailities and interests. Having a sibling close in age does not guarantee that they will be close/good friends--I wouldn't have another child simply so they have a sibling close in age. If you are interested in having another child that is a different story...
  8. Even Julia Child did not shy away from using some convenience/canned foods. Some of her cooking revolved around having top-quality ingredients with inctricate, time-consuming prepping. But, she also emphasized how to make an egg dish quickly and easily or how to use canned French Onion soup to make a meal.
  9. There are many canned options with no added salt--I can buy peas, tomatoes, corn, beans... with no added salt. An easy,, quick option when my kids were young was quesidillas--store bought tortillas, some cheese, Then I would add what I had on hand, maybe some leftover rotissere chicken, grilled onions and peppers, leftover taco meat, canned tomotoes, canned corn, black beans. It was a good way to use some scraps if we had some, integrate some fresh items if we had some, or add in some canned veggies.
  10. I think that it is easy to start thinking of home-prepped meals as full-blown Norman Rockwell-style meals. A dinner of salami, cheese, and grapes takes less time than stopping at McDonald's; a grilled cheese sandwich and carrot sticks is not time consuming to prepare; a scrambled egg with an apple; yogurt with granola, nuts, and fruit; oatmeal and strawberries; a tuna fish sandwich, a PB&J sandwich.... These are all fine within a balanced diet (especially if kids are eating a larger meal at school) I think it is helpful to have a few handy items in the freezer or the pantry for very rushed times (frozen pizza, peanut butter, etc.)--this provides a break from the "we need to stop for fast food routine". Then I think it is helpful to begin with familiar, low prep items (like frozen chicken nuggets and fries) and add ONE item, like frozen green beans, canned fruit, or grapes to the offering to begin developing broader tastes and begin to see it is easy (and enjoyable) to add some fruits and veggies.
  11. I admit to feeding my children all three of these meals at different times. The nutritional value of chicken nuggets, frozen french fries, and pasta roni can vary across flavors and brands. Even the time and cost dimensions are not static. If I needed to pick up one child from baseball practice on one side of town and get another child to a music concert on the other side of town in one hour--there may not be time to go home, heat the oven, and cook the nuggets. If I am picking them up from school and going home for the evening, it can be faster to go home and pop the nuggets and fries in the oven than sit in line at McDonald's.
  12. Thanks for all the information! I have passed it on. This person is active (mid 70s), doesn't have significant dexeritiy problems or significant hearng loss--but enough that bacground noise is problematic.
  13. I am sorry they are experiencing this. It is not a situation I would want to live in. Unfortunately, this type of situation can occur if it is not clearly outlined how decisions like this will be made. People often don't think of what "might" happen when they enter into these living arrangements. I have extended family that have several different families with homes in the same fenced multi-acre area. For many years they have lived in harmony with kids wandering in and out of aunts/uncles and grandparent's houses. Now, one parent has had an adult son return home due to drug and legal problems. Now the others on the property are realizing they don't want their young children exposed to some of what has been occurring with that situation.
  14. How much width is there on each side of the fireplace? Do the walls on each side of the fireplace run into another wall (form a corner)? Or does a wall end for a walkway on either or both sides? What is behind the walls? (is there any possibility of opening up the wall and placing shelving between studs?)
  15. I teach mostly juniors and seniors. My colleagues and I are seeing things we had not encountered in the past--students not putting their names on exams (or putting "Michael" when there are 200 students in the class), filling out Scantrons in pen, scribbling and scratching out answers on a Scantron, going to the classroom for office hours, asking what to do if they aren't sure if the answer is A or B, asking if they can get partial credit for a T/F question... Not are we only seeing weak math and study skills, we are seeing a general lack of knowledge of how to be a student. (We even had a group of students petition the dean asking that all faculty be required to provide a copy of the exam and answer key before exams were given so that they could study!) This semester an adjunct professor in my department was terminated in the middle of the semester-I have never seen this happen before--but the individual's teaching, class atttendance, grading, etc. was so atrocious, that a recently retired faculty member has been rehired to finish the semester. So, I have seen major shifts on both sides of the classroom experience
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