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About cjzimmer1

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  1. Back when DS was growing, I struggled so much trying to find clothes for him (he grew 9 inches in 10 months and ended the spurt with needing a 28x36 - yeah I never did find that size). I HATE shopping and so I didn't even know where to start or what brands might work. For any others in the same boat, I learned Levi seems to be the best choice for jeans. Not all colors/sizes but if you hunt enough you find some things. I know some of the teen stores (abercrombie, banana republic etc) had some but they were very expensive and still ended up being too short for our needs.
  2. Honestly, I don't think there is any standard to sizing across brands or even styles within the same brand. Within the same style, there is "usually" some regularity but quality control is so poor, it wouldn't surprise me in the slitest to find problems there too. I've also found it pretty common to have my boys be one size on top and a different size on bottom. It really sucks but the only sure fire way I've found to outfit them is to just keep on trying things till you find something that fits.
  3. Try thinking about recipes as a list of suggestions rather than absolute must haves. There are very few recipes that I've encounter that must be made exactly as written. Yes the outcome might be different with substitutions but that doesn't equal bad. Shepherd's pie is a favorite of my kids. I started making it one day and discovered I was out of potatoes. So I stirred rice into instead. My kids now prefer the doctored version to the potato version. Chili is a wonderful way to use up random meats and veggies. If you think the kids will object to one of the veggies just puree it before adding. I also use 1 pound of dry lentils to 2 pounds of hamburger for most recipes that use hamburger. My kids won't eat beans in any form but will eat lentils. Brown ones work the best with hamburger in our opinion. I buy a lot of things in bulk. It's a bigger upfront cost but the per pound price is much better. Oatmeal is about a dollar a pound at the grocery store, it's less than 50 cents a pound when I buy it in 50 pound bags. But first you have to have space to store and second you have to know you will use it all. For a short term, bulk might not be the way to go but look at your most used items. If there is a cheaper option to buy the large quantities, being even to save a few dollars can start to add up when you look at each item.
  4. Sounds about right! my only complaint about the Bosch is that I don't like the section where the tines are really close together. I have fiestaware and those tines are too close together to put plates in every slot. I usually just put my pots or mixing bowls over that area so it's not a big deal to work around. But yes, the Bosch is like 100 X better than my old dishwasher.
  5. I have 2 fridges (the largest capacity I could find) and 2 full sized freezers. I regularly (as in at least once a month) wish I had a 3rd of each. But I simply have no more space for them. But the 2 I have get emptied and refilled so often it's kind of scary just how much food my crew goes though. I would be lucky to store a day's worth of food if I only had 1 appliance. You are right that this single issue is a huge part of OP problem. Cold storage space is a necessity for my sanity.
  6. If your problem is just reception in a building (and it's a building that gives you access to WiFi), you might want to consider one of the companies that use hybrid technology (like Republic Wireless, Google Fi and others). It's uses wifi whenever available and cellular when it's not. DH works in a manufacturing building and the frame of the building blocks all cellular reception. Work allows people to use the wifi for their phones and so most everyone who works there uses this type of service.
  7. For me grocery shopping and meal "planning" are 2 completely different things (and this is where the extra freezer comes in). I grocery shop for things that are on sale (of course there is those staples that you need no mater what). But when chicken is on sale, I'll buy 30 pounds, or pork shoulder or bacon or whatever. I buy 20-30 pounds of assorted kinds of frozen veggies. I also keep quick meals in the freezer. Then when it comes time to actually cooking for the hoards, I have pretty much everything I need on hand. If it's a crazy day and I know I won't have time to cook, pull out an easy meal. If I have my act together, pull out a big hunk of meat and let it thaw, on days in between make something with chicken breasts or hamburger. But because I keep enough different kinds of ingredients on hand, I can put together a meal almost everyday without having to spend much time on the planning side of things (which I fail at tremendously because things always come up so I do better with a method that gives me a lot more flexibility). So in your shoes, with lots of late night meals, I'd be keeping precooked hamburger and chicken in the freezer, frozen veggies and quick cooking starches in the pantry. I'd also keep something like e premade shepherd's pie, lasagna, or stuffed peppers in the freezer that could be put in the oven and cooking while I'm gone. I'd also have a stockpile of deli meats/cheeses in the fridge, canned chicken/tuna in the pantry and bread in the freezer (some of the thicker kinds that don't freezer burn as easily so I could buy several weeks worth at one time, or naan or other flatbread, tortillas always keep well and wraps are a nice quick option)
  8. Well my 90+ grandmother has spent most of her adult life insisting she would be buried in a very revealing lace negligee. She also wanted a church funeral. No amount of discussion would change her mind. She had purchased it when she was around 50 and everyone who knew her, knew that her wishes were to be buried in that. However, some of the family members were very uncomfortable with the idea of her laying with an open casket (her wishes) in that particular clothing item in a church. So yeah, we overrode her wishes. Well we kind of compromised. She had the negligee on but we put a nice suit over it. You may disagree with me, but sometimes I think it's okay to agree to agree with something to keep the peace but change it afterwards.
  9. When my oldest was that age, he grew 10 inches and went up 4 shoe sizes in 9 months. He was always wearing ill fitted clothes because besides growing so rapidly, he was so skinny we couldn't find pants to fit. He wasn't bothered by it but I sure felt bad that I couldn't even keep him clothed properly.
  10. When we bought our house 20 years ago, DH worked full time and I worked part time. But we wanted the flexibility that our living expenses were not contingent on me working. So we only turned in documents pertaining to DH's job. We were questioned so many times about my income and we just kept repeating, we only want the pre-approval/loan value to be based on DH's income. They kept feeding us a line "but you get so much more house if you would just let us use your income too". We've never once regretted not going for a bigger loan but they sure did try to make us feel guilty about it.
  11. The day my eldest went to get his, he drove their, took his test, drove me home and then went right back to the same street the DMV is on (his work is across the street. And yes it felt like such a non-event. I drove him to work and picked up from work every day for 2 years and then I just didn't and for some reason I didn't even notice the change in my routine at all. Second DS is still here everyday so I suspect it will feel a little different when he gets his and starts working.
  12. I had considered making signs that said "I'm sorry, I'm still learning" and tape them up when my teen was driving. Oh, that's even better, I've seen them on cars from the driver's school but never thought about buying them myself.
  13. I'm teaching my second. I think there is a permanent dent in the floor board from me "braking". They just don't stop gradually enough for my taste. But I've told both them about the bad car accident I was in at 14 and the fact of the matter certain movements in the car trigger that memory for me. And yes young driver's trigger that memory a lot. But I will say by 3rd time out, there is no way I'd be in a car going 55. First lesson is a parking lot, and the next 15 hours or so are driving around subdivisions and then we work up to the 35 limit streets. You are much braver than I letting them on back country roads (but I live in the city so we have to seek out winding roads so I just don't until much later). I don't think it's possible to relax while teaching new driver's, it more like just get through it.
  14. Yep, Sidewise spiraled around till full. I'm sure you could cut them apart but that's more work and feeding my crew is enough work already. The only reason I would consider the effort is if I couldn't quite fit 3 racks on their sides, I would cut the extra off and lay it on top.
  15. I have an 8 qt. I can get two full slabs in there (which is all we make at a time) but there is still room. I'm sure I could get 2 1/2 slabs possibly even 3. You either have a smaller instant pot than me or eat a whole lot more ribs than we do!
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