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  • Biography
    Homeschooling mom to two awesome teens.
  • Location
    Snowy north
  • Interests
    Reading, knitting, and all things Sherlock.
  • Occupation
    Administrative Assistant (p.t.) and homeschooling mom
  1. We went 9 years with no child support being collected from my ex-husband. When he reached the point of being over $22,000 in arrears, the state finally threatened him with jail time. At that point a caseworker helped him magically be declared disabled. We now get $115 each month toward the debt of back support. It didn't take long for me to realize that supporting my kids was completely up to me. Definitely not fair, but it was the reality of the situation. So sorry you are going through this, I know how hard it is.
  2. Boy, that's frustrating. I hate to suggest you throw more money at grammar, but I've found this book to be invaluable for diagramming: http://www.amazon.com/Rex-Barks-Diagramming-Sentences-Made/dp/1889439355/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1350498990&sr=8-1&keywords=Rex+Barks
  3. Betty Lukens felts, lacing kit, cloth books. That got us through quite a bit when my son was 3. I did have to leave Mass with him sometimes. The rule was, if I had to take him out, he spent the rest of the time sitting quietly buckled into his car seat. No talking allowed. There is a woman at our parish who has three very young, active sons. They really do remarkably well. I noticed the for the most challenging one, she sometimes brings her ipad and earbuds. It looks like he is listening to audio kids books on it. (Just be sure they don't disconnect the earbuds!) I don't know if I would do that, but I have to say, it really works well (for the rest of us! LOL) This too shall pass.
  4. I think rescheduling was the kind, considerate thing to do. It's hard to step out of your self sometimes and understand that everyone else doesn't experience things the same way you do. I'm with Heather on the braces! It was brutal! It was so painful, and the first week or so the inside of my mouth was totally cut up by the braces. Agony. As for periods, mine were atrocious. Not only was I curled up in a ball crying from the cramping, but I usually spent the first day vomiting. Every single month. When I was 24 and getting married, I would still vomit the first day of my period. After my first pregnancy, that stopped. Now, to someone for whom braces or their period was just a breeze with no problems, they would point a finger and cry - "drama!" Not so. It was pain. And just because other people didn't share that experience, that doesn't mean it didn't hurt. KWIM? So, I'd definitely extend grace in this area. (And, by the way, my parents certainly never did. Sigh. They were "get over it" types.) And, honestly, after all that time of trying to overcome a sensory problem with water, I think it is a good thing that she is upset she can't swim. Isn't that better than crying about not wanting to swim in the first place?
  5. Last month I started using the Homeschool Helper App for the ipad. It can track time spent on an assignment for you - when you enter an assignment/lesson, there is a box called "Duration." You can either enter how long you expect your teen to spend on the assignment, or have them enter how long was spent on it after the fact. Super easy. (After all these years of homeschooling & using paper planners, I'm loving this app!)
  6. I've been a single parent homeschooler for 12 years. During that time, I've done everything from finishing a college degree to working part and full-time. Currently I work outside the home 3 days/wk and homeschool two teens (16 and almost 18). For me, the key has been accepting my limitations. When you have many plates to keep spinning at the same time, it helps to accept that each one won't be perfect. Sometimes the housework is behind or there is a particular subject we are slipping behind in. I try not to feel guilty about that. I limit our outside activities and try to keep life super simple. Simple meals, routines, limiting material possessions to only what we truly need, etc. Financially, I was able to survive because when my husband left us we had no debt. I moved into my mother's two-story garage and converted it to a home, so I have lived rent free the entire time. I knew that if I went through a couple yard years of working & finishing my degree, it would ultimately pay off in me being able to work p.t. and still survive because I'd be earning more. And that has worked beautifully. So, I currently work only 21 hrs/wk. As we live beside my mom and she is retired and widowed, my kids spend their day with her when I'm working. This way they never had to be alone during the day for all these years. (God bless my mom!) Let me know if there are any specifics I can offer that might be helpful.
  7. I feel the same way about bats that I do about snakes -- I hate their unpredictable movements. When my son was about 9 I had painted his bedroom a navy blue with a space theme of stencils on the walls in white. I covered the ceiling over his bunk beds with stick on glow-in-the-dark stars. One morning I went into his room to wake him, and there was a bat (imagine it - right over his bed!) sound asleep while clinging to the largest plastic star. I thought, "Wow! The bat actually thinks he's outside. .. did this room turn out fabulous or what?" LOL I grabbed a tupperware container and a cookie sheet w/out sides to capture him - tupperware over the sleeping bat and slid the cookie sheet between him and the ceiling. At that point he woke up and was not amused. I tossed him out the bedroom window, tupperware and cookie sheet and all. Ew. And then I had to throw out the container & cookie sheet, because there was no way I was going to ever be able to use them again! Usually if you take out a window screen and shut the door to that room, they will fly out on their own. But it is a little stressful to crawl along the floor to the window to accomplish this. I guess it wouldn't hurt for you to look the kids over & check yourself & hubby for any signs of a bite mark? I hate to creep you out further, but there is always the risk. And if you had been bitten in your sleep, you wouldn't necessarily know it.
  8. I voted other. Been single parenting homeschooling for twelve years. I will say, though, that ex-husband does not criticize me for homeschooling now that he visits his teens. And his new wife, while a p.s. employee, doesn't, either. In fact, she brought us a nice bag of school supplies this weekend! That's all the support we get -- politeness and school supplies. It works!
  9. I think I would have said, "Wow, FIL. .. how ironic that you were so busy hyper-focusing on their shoes while I was downstairs doing the laundry for MIL. Because we don't come to inconvenience you, we come because we love you. I'm so glad I didn't trip over a shoe and get hurt! Hope your home owner's insurance is paid up!" Then I'd have thrown the shoes right back down the stairs, and added, "Please go pick up the shoes and bring them here, as the children had them. And then I'll be only to happen to move them out of your way." I wouldn't totally cut these people off. But I would accept that they can't handle having your family there as house guests. Ever again.
  10. It looks like Target is having a good sale, so I'll have to check them out. So far I've hit the local Wal-Mart. Bought several of the sewn composition notebooks with graph paper. Love these and want enough to last my son for Algebra all year. They have the Mead sewn composition notebooks (college ruled) with a vinyl-type cover this year. Have bought a pile of those. Love them. Also have stocked up on new binders, dividers, and page protectors for my teens to notebook.
  11. I think my all-time favorite is Homeschool Supermom. . .NOT! When Grace Meets Homeschooling by Susan Kemmerer.
  12. I've been a single parent homeschooler since 2000. You can do it! Currently, I work p.t. as an administrative assistant 3 days/wk outside the home. I am also studying medical transcription through the online course at Career Step. I'm really enjoying it. If anyone has positive tips and experience to share, please do it here! Those of us in training appreciate the encouragement!
  13. I suggest you take him to a different doctor. And that they test for the full panel of tick-born illnesses, not just Lyme. All of them. When my daughter was diagnosed with PANDAS, she also tested positive for HGE. We had no clue she had it at all. Talk about one miserable 15yog. I can't even begin to describe the misery. Be very proactive and insistent.
  14. Mine have known for many years, because we have very close family members who are IRS agents. I loved it when my daughter, as a little girl, caught on to the big picture and said to them one day, "So you're like a detective who finds the bad guys who are stealing money? Kind of like Nancy Drew, only about money?" Yes! Exactly! I would find it shocking if teens that age had no clue who the IRS was - do you think they never read the news?
  15. I have two teens and they'll still be getting an Easter basket. In addition to candy, they'll each get a new CD and new covers for their iPod classics. Oh, and I got them each a new prayer book. My mom always put a few plastic eggs filled with quarters or one dollar bills in our baskets.
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