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  1. We are starting our search for some land (10-15acres) to build a house. Some of the parcels we have found have minimal restrictions because they are part of a small "community" of parcels. Examples: Only stick built homes, no trailers, no mobile homes, no noxious or offensive activities etc. There is also a clause on some that state if 80% of the owners agree to amend the restrictions they can. Even though they seem reasonable, we worry that it may not feel like we have left our HOA. Our plan is to build a home and have a very small hobby farm. We just don't want to worry that down the road things could change and we couldn't have/do what we wanted on our property. Our realtor told us it wasn't too common to have any restrictions on land but they can be good as it helps with resale. For those that live on land what do you think? Are minimal restrictions positive or negative?
  2. Thanks for the replies so far. I definitely want my DD to learn to tack up and groom. Her interest in horseback riding is equally about learning to care for animals as it is to learn to ride. For the second school they said that if you want to tack up and groom you let them know you will be arriving to the lesson early to learn. The 30 minutes is all on the horse.
  3. I don't know anything about riding really. There are 2 riding schools close to us that both seem very good. For those that may be experienced with this do you think either one of these schools sounds like the better option? School 1: Teaches English Saddle Private Lessons (60min) are $65 Group Lessons (60min) are $45 - ratio is 6:1 (3-4 students for beginners) Students can progress to participating in competitions, dressage, jumping Students start with an evaluation, then private hour long lessons until they can trot comfortably, and then they can transition to hour long group classes if desired. All students are required to learn to tack up Instructors all have degrees in related fields and one of them coached the local university equestrian team for 2 years and now coaches the local state university huntseat team They have an academy show one time per year for all the students Facility is beautiful with an indoor and outdoor ring - they host the huntseat team from the state university. School 2: Teaches English Saddle Seat (is this the same thing as above?) Private Lessons (30min) are $40 They offer private lessons only (instructor told me they sometimes offer small group lessons and will extend the time of the lessons instead of adjusting the price) Students can progress to competitions as well here Instructors biographies were not available online but I spoke with 2 of them and they both have many years of teaching experience. Instructor told me they stick with 30 minute lessons because they feel that is the optimal amount of time for the students to focus and they work them very hard in that 30 minutes. Instructor also told me they try to do mostly privates for safety of the students. Edited to add: She also mentioned that they move the kids quickly and would have her trotting on her first lesson - wasn't sure if this was a good thing or a red flag Students can learn to tack up if they like but you can also just show up for the lesson with the horse ready. They also do an academy show each year at this school. Their facility was nice and they also had an indoor and outdoor riding ring. Any thoughts from riders or moms of riders? I really think this could be a long term interest for my daughter so I am trying to pick a place that will start her off right.
  4. My boys are the exact same size. I lay everything out and they go back and forth picking what they want. I then mark the tags with their initials. I didn't know there was such a thing as a laundry marker - I will need to look into this. Underwear - they get completely different styles so it is obvious. Same of course with coats and shoes. Socks they get all the same and are thrown in a bin in the mud room to put on as they are leaving. It was truly annoying folding and sorting their laundry before I had the idea to mark the clothes.
  5. Balancing our checking account isn't just about accounting for charges that haven't gone through yet - it is about sticking to our monthly budget. I balanced my checkbook very closely in college when our funds were much lower and overdrawing was a real possibility. Then I went through a long period of not doing anything because we would write out a spending plan and had enough in our accounts that we knew we wouldn't overdraw even if we went over our spending allotment. Then we found a budgeting software called YNAB. Now all of our accounts - checking, savings, and credit cards are in one place. I put in all charges about 1-2 times per week - credit charges, automatic deductions or payments, checks etc. I can then have the software program balance it automatically and see if I am missing anything. I honestly haven't found any credit card or banking mistakes yet but that's not the only reason we do it. Now that we actually know down to the penny what we are spending on everything, we are doing much better financially (even though I thought we were doing fine before). I am so glad we decided to start balancing our budget again.
  6. Something that has been said directly is that the policy was written to give clarification to local leaders who had lots of questions on how to handle same gender families and in particular their children. Can I just say that I feel disgusted that any leader paused before baptizing a child/teen from a same gender family when all were on board?? I feel like this clarification gives virtually all power to local leaders to use their own prejudice in making decisions about the current families caught in the middle of this. Seems like it also gives all power to them to decide how much time is "too much time" for a child to spend with a gay parent before they become "unworthy" for ordinances.
  7. Some... not a lot. https://www.lds.org/pages/church-handbook-changes?cid=HP_WE_11-11-2015_dPFD_fCNWS_xLIDyL1-A_&lang=eng In particular: The policy should only be applied to children whose "primary residence" is a home with same gender parents. States that children living with same gender parents who are already baptized and are active, are not to have their ordinances curtailed, however seems to give leeway to local leaders to ultimately decide in the very next sentence. I think I am reading that right. Does not address at all the directive that they can't be living in the same home as their same gender parents after age 18. Does not give clarification on 50/50 custody situations... I guess that's a no?? Does not address a family where half of the children may be currently baptized and the other half not.
  8. Yes - this is the impression I got from the mom. She was feeling overall rattled and that there was some underlying criticism that her child couldn't solve it yet without some aids. I was considering suggesting this approach to her but wanted to be more confident before I did. Thanks for the responses.
  9. Child is in 1st grade public school (just turned 6) Currently doing word problems such as Mary has 7 apples and needs 15 total for the party; how many more does she need? They need to write the math sentence and then solve. Mother directed her child to use tally marks to assist with solving the problem. If relevant; this is the child's first time with this type of problem. After her child took the homework back to class, mother was sent an email from the teacher telling her that her child should not be using tally marks or pictures to solve the problem. She was instructed that the calculation should be done in her head and/or should be memorized. Teacher also stated that if absolutely necessary she should tell her child to use her fingers. Friend came to me for advice. Even though I am currently teaching my own 1st graders similar concepts using manipulatives and pictorial representations, I was hesitant to tell her the teacher was completely wrong because... I don't know? Is there some reason that I don't know about or understand why she would tell her that fingers are better than tally marks? Or, should friend just keep doing what she is doing but use a separate page for the tally marks so it doesn't become an unnecessary battle? What says the hive?
  10. Have you heard of the book "Steal Like An Artist" ? The author asserts that as humans we need to hear and see things over and over again which is why the same art (or ideas) show themselves over and over again in just slightly different ways. He also asserts that if you "imitate" one person you are considered a copycat, but if you steal from lots of people and put it together in your own way with the extra thing that gives it your personality you are considered a genius. I thought of Marie Kondo when I read the book.
  11. This thread has given me the motivation in the week leading up to our homeschooling year to tackle our extra "stuff." Did the closet and removed 5-6 bags to goodwill. We can now see everything we own and like all of it. Moved sentimental clothing like prom dresses and HS dance team uniform to a different closet where we are putting sentimental items to sort last. The closet is beautiful and much easier to keep clean. Did my craft/sewing area and trashed a full bag of junk/old projects/unusable fabric and have a bin of good fabric to give away. I found the most gorgeous Alice in Wonderland fabric that I forgot I owned and can now actually sew my daughter a dress with it since I know where all my supplies are and my area is clean. Did our two junk drawers and piles of mail downstairs. Discovered I don't need junk drawers if all our items are things with a purpose and have a place to go. Everything else downstairs was good so just gave it a good cleaning. The last 2 days have been spent sorting our papers. They are my nemesis as I am way too sentimental with the kids' items and petrified to get rid of any financial documents. Not done yet but have taken 3 garbage bags full of trashed kids' art and shredded paperwork out so far. Almost all of the kids' art that I like is sorted into storage drawers and I have only 2 large piles of paper left!!! Not going to finish before we start school on Monday but I want to complete the papers and then tackle ALL our sentimental items over the next month. This has been great! Not sure if I am doing it completely the Konmari way but our house feels wonderful.
  12. .When we print in color the quality is very poor. With the price of the ink being so high as well I figured I could find a better deal to have it printed and it would look nicer. Black and white would be very cheap but I do want to print them in color.
  13. My twins will be 1st graders and we are planning: Daily: Math: Math Mammoth 1 Reading: Continue with Alpha Phonics, Bob Books - adding in Explode the Code; Read alouds Writing: Continue with Handwriting practice, journal entries 1-2x per week: History: SOTW 1 with student workbook / State History at the museum with co-op Science: REAL Science Odyssey - Life Science with co-op Geography: Evan Moor Beginning Geography Romanian: Speak with kids in Romanian for part of each day.
  14. What websites offer quality printing that you have used? I need to print our Math Mammoth worktexts for next year and can't believe the variance in prices. 2 Student worktexts in color at office depot is 160, on lulu.com is 60, and at bestvaluecopy is 30. Has anyone used any of these websites or have a different one they like?
  15. Have to reply with a vote for YNAB. We started it at the beginning of this year - it is VERY user friendly. Take the free class they offer to get the basics of the program. I do not know how we lived without it before now. You can download the program for a free trial.
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