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Everything posted by GoVanGogh

  1. I had extreme exhaustion for about a year before I was diagnosed with celiac. Like, had to take a nap after walking to the mailbox and back type of exhaustion. In most people, celiac makes them lose weight. Not the case with me. It made me retain weight. Still, for me, my first symptom is extreme achy joints and fatigue, not stomach. I also have Epstein Barr and often have flare ups. I have three autoimmune disorders and thyroid issues. (Have you been tested for Hashimoto’s?) I have had a lot of health issues and found that two things that help with my fatigue is working out and eliminating caffeine. I know. Crazy. But after a week of zero caffeine, I feel so much more awake. Like a fog has lifted from my brain. For working out, I have found that there is a happy medium. I have to work out really hard, but not too hard. Light workouts make me tired. I think it has something to do with how I sleep after working out. Maybe keep a food and activity journal to monitor for patterns? And I do agree with a sleep study, though I have not had one personally.
  2. We put our son in cc as a sophomore, age 15. We had planned to wait another year, but one of his outside teachers recommended a class she knew we were interested in. Her own children had started cc at 15 with this class and teacher. In the end, I think he could have started at age 14 and done well, but I am also content that we waited. He has now taken two years of de and done very well. This is my generally non-social child with a speech disorder (much better with extensive therapy) and a mild physical disability. He loves cc and the community there, and has really thrived and grown since starting there. It forced him out of his comfort zone, which he needed. He wasn’t sheltered prior, as we live in a large city and travel quite a bit. (And we had a drug house next door several years ago where a teenager died of an overdose.) He has seen and heard a lot growing up. I just asked him about language on his campus and he said he doesn’t hear much fowl language. He says he hears about parties but has never seen anyone doing anything illegal or dicey on campus. I will say - one of the first people he got to know on campus was an older lady that is a massage therapist. As he was talking about this lady, my momma bear radar went off. I was picturing a cougar... LOL
  3. Our young male cat recently had blood in his urine. In his case, he had two crystals blocking his urethra. It became very serious very quickly. My DH thought I was being paranoid for taking the cat in, but both vets that worked on him said we ended up with best case scenario bc I took him in so fast. Males are more prone to urinary crystals than females are. Also, our cat was vomiting and lethargic. But we were told that cats generally tend to hide symptoms until it is too late. Our regular vet worked with the emergency vet as it was over the weekend. Both were around the same price. Best wishes! And hugs. It is always a hard decision on what to do!
  4. My DS has cerebral palsy and has undergone two full neuropsychologist evals for his accommodations. He took the ACT with accommodations, including additional time. I don’t know if it ended up being 1.5 or 2x the normal amount, but I know I wouldn’t consider that accommodation to be a benefit to him. He took half of the exam the first day of the ACT, after the other kids had taken the exam and left for the day. Which meant - he went to the school at 5pm and started the test then, which interfered with his normal eating schedule and he was already physically tired. He took half the test that day. Then he went back at 8 am on Sunday morning and took the other half of the test. Testing at the end of a day, for a child that is not neurotypical, was awful. And then to get up early the next morning, just a bit over 12 hours later, and complete the test was terrible! And one of his main accommodations was for a quiet test environment. The proctor re-arranged her classroom, changed out a bulletin board and wrote on the whiteboard during son’s test time. According to him, it was anything BUT quiet. We were going to file a complaint and ask for a re-test but he did well enough that we decided not to. (Re: time - DS didn’t need extra time for the actual test, but he was allowed physical breaks every hour, which accounted for his extra test taking time.) I am furious about the implications this can have on kids with learning and physical disabilities. We jumped through all the formal hoops to get accommodations that our son rightly needs.
  5. Re: the shelf you pictured. Those look like Made in Occupied Japan figurines. Market is mixed. I just did an auction and bought a shelf full of OJ items, just like the one you pictured. I paid $18 for the contents of the shelf. I sell antiques and vintage wares. I anticipate to make about $500 profit if I can sell everything, but I will work them into my business over a year’s time If you were to sell that shelf at an estate sale, you are looking at $3-10 for each item or pair, first day of sale. Most estate sale companies do 25% off second day of sale and half to 75% last day of sale. Figurines like those are often left and sell the last day, so you are looking at most selling for $1-5 each. That is average, there might be a few worth more mixed in there, it is hard to tell without looking each one up. You need to decide what is worth your time. The 40/60, if you just want to be done with it. Hold you own one or two day bargain basement priced estate sale and list on estate Or donate everything. (I have not seen second hand stores here limit donations.) Maybe contact an antique store and see if they have a dealer that is interested in picking through anything of value. I would personally consider doing something like that. (Or post on local Facebook group and see if you can find someone that way...) i posted on your other thread. I go to a lot of estate sales, since I sell antiques. I just went to one last week that was privately done. They had family helping, few in garage/outside, few inside. Maybe five family members. You would need some packaging material. (Have everyone save up grocery bags, doesn’t have to be much.) This family had gone through and researched a few collectibles. They knew, say, McCoy pottery was valuable and had that marked as such. Other pottery, they didn’t know and had priced low. Garage and shed items were not priced, you asked for price and went from there. All books were $1-2. Everything in the kitchen was $1 each, except for a few nicer items which were researched and priced at market value. (Based off Etsy, eBay, ruby lane...) Everything was full price first day, half off second day. That said - I bought several boxes of stuff first day and they were, like, let’s just call all this $50 and be good with it, okay? They were glad to be done with it and get $50. I felt like I got a great deal. We were both happy. Another possibility - take golf clubs to sports consignment shop. Take furniture to consignment shop. Donate the rest. I don’t know your Market for used golf clubs. I do know I see a lot of golf clubs at garage sales and estate sales and second hand stores. That, to me, means they probably don’t have a lot of resale value, though would depend on brand obviously. Look up new value and half that (bc clubs often go on sale half off before new line comes out) then consider half to 75% of that. Were you asking about camera equipment on last thread? Older camera equipment is collectible now. Can you find a camera store in your area? I have bought,traded and sold camera equipment before at a camera store. (I am in big city with an actual camera store. You may not have in your area.)
  6. I sell antiques/vintage items and attend a lot of estate sales and have friends in the industry I don’t know how most could do an accurate inventory. If there are enough items for an estate sale, there is generally a lot of stuff! Like boxes of old magazine, books, tools, etc. It is also hard for family to say what might sell. Using two items OP mentioned - walkmans are actually collectible right now, while Toby mugs are a dime a dozen at many second hand stores right now. Magazines from the the ‘60s and ‘70s are collectible, while newer ones aren’t. But people buy odd things at estate sales. Some people go to buy things like household cleaning items for cheap, so - yeah, there is a market for that. Some people go to look for new bedding, while another person (like me) would be looking for, say, old tea towels. A good estate sale will attract both type of shoppers. You cant plan on getting top dollar for everything. Yes, some items will sell for a good price while others will practically be given away. Think, everything balances out in the end. An estate sale is about convenience for the family. A quick way to clear out a house. There are several large franchise estate sale companies that have good reputations. Look at For households with large collections - like above mentioned records or books where some might be highly collectible or first edition - a good company will sort through and pull some out to price higher. Just yesterday, I was at a sale with thousands of great books. Maybe 100 were pulled out and priced individually while the rest were $2 hardback and $1 paperback. Yes, they are likely to miss a few treasures, but again - getting top dollar for everything isn’t the goal of an estate sale. Most people in the business have an eye for certain categories, like ceramics or books, and can tell with a quick glance what items may be worth more.
  7. I was hospitalized earlier this month for mental,health reasons and to be monitored during a medication change. I am in a suburb of one of the largest cities in US. I was in the local ER for half a day, then transported an hour away to the nearest facility. A good freind’s daughter attempted suicide in a large socially progressive city almost two years ago. It took them forever to find a facility for a teen, and then it was over an hour away. I cannot even imagine what it is like in rural areas when options are so awful in large cities!
  8. DS has severe aphasia from cerebral palsy. We found that a foreign language actually helped his English skills. I don’t know if it would be the same with dyslexia. But I would be hesitant to write it off in 9th grade. DS is now continuing his language of choice in community college with accommodations and is doing very well with it.
  9. Adding: i live in a state that requires me to pay taxes on items sold in state, so I have to keep track of in-state sales and pay quarterly taxes, which is a drag. Amazon’s website for sellers is good, I think. User friendly. If I can think of other things, I will try and post. But feel free to message me with questions.
  10. I started a small business last year and one aspect of the business is selling books on Amazon. I wish I had started earlier! I generally can get a much higher price selling on Amazon than I can selling locally. That said. Amazon takes a hefty commission. And it took me some time to figure out shipping and such. I now buy mailing packages in bulk, like 100 or more at a time, in three different sizes, as that brings down that expense I have had a few dry spells, like April was real slow. Otherwise, it has just been a steady source of income. Not enough to make a living on. LOL But to sell homeschool curriculum, it is awesome! I don’t sell larger books, like coffee table books unless I can sell for $40 or more bc the packaging and shipping is awful. I take out insurance for larger sales, in case something happens during transit. And I photograph the books from larger sales, in case there is a dispute about condition. (That has only been an issue once when a book was damaged in transit. Thankfully I had taken out insurance for an extra $2 so the post office covered the claim.) Standing in line at the post office can be a drag, bc our local post office is terrible.
  11. Exactly. And don’t forget that some anti-depressants have suicidal ideation as a side affect! Or that insurance companies like to play games with your meds, like “Holiday weekend, we aren’t going to cover that med anymore so take this generic form instead.” BTDT Two years ago over 4th of July. I woke up trying to kill myself by cutting my neck. I had no conscious awareness what I was doing at the time. I woke up, totally freaking out. I couldn’t get ahold of any of my doctors. We ended up paying $$$ to get my original med that the insurance company suddenly decided not to cover after several years on it. It took more than a week to get the generic med out of my system and for the side effects to go away. Many people with mental health issues (I have PTSD) take a cocktail of medicines. It is an ongoing experiment to find the right balance of meds. I may be rocking along okay for months on my meds, then crash bad and need to have something adjusted. When I crash - to use Scarlett’s wording on breast cancer - there is no way to survive a crash on your own, a person has NO power to stop it. It takes people on the outside to realize it and get you the help you need, it takes a doctor being responsive that yes, you have crashed, it takes the insurance company to pay for the medications, it takes the pharmaceutical companies to continue to research and invent medications. No, it isn’t the same as breast cancer, but there are times when there are just no ways to survive mental health issues. The odds are so stacked against those with mental health although issues.
  12. We loved it. DS read it in 9th grade, with his dad and I also re-reading it at the same time. I just asked their opinion again, in light of this thread. We were all in agreement that it is a wonderful book. The topic is harsh, yes. But it is very well written and a great conversation for social and political issues. We referenced it often when discussing new stories that year. None of us thought it graphic. DH and I both remember reading much more graphic books as young teenagers.
  13. After the first year of a foreign language at home, we have outsourced it. Ds took 2 years outsourced in middle school, then two years of high school foreign language, but he started high school level class in 8th grade. He now has taken two semesters at a community college. Right now, he will have four credits on his transcript, but he plans to continue so will have at least six on his transcript. DS has aphasia (oral expressive disorder) from a stroke. His neurologist really encouraged us to try a foreign language, to see if we could make neurological connections in a foreign langauage that weren’t made (techincally, were destroyed) in English bc of the stroke. We had an amazing speech pathologist that worked with ds for many years, both in English and in the foreign language. (As much as she could in the foreign langauage.) I think it is much, much harder for children with LDs to learn a second language, but not impossible. We had an exemption from the foreign language reqcuurements from our son’s neuropsychologist, but just held that as a backup plan. Studying another language in depth really did help our son with his primary language.
  14. DS started dual enrollment at a community college in 10th grade, just for the foreign language. He could have placed out of the classes but we wanted him to have an easy first few classes at college, because he would be learning so much else from the college class setting. It has been great for him. The material is mainly a review, but the college teachers have such a different expectation for output than his homeschool teachers. He actually has had a few students in his college classes that are fluent speakers in the langauage but they grew up speaking it, not reading or writing it.
  15. My son just took the ACT and his career planning was spot on with what he wants to do. Engineering. Possibly medical related. Back in the day, my DH’s said he should be a trash collector. He has been a successful engineer for almost 35 years now, so thankful he didn’t follow his ACT advice. I took a non-traditional route to college and did not take ACT or SAT or do any career planning. My advice many years later: If you aren’t willing or able to move, be sure to pick something you can get a job in where you live. I went to college as a married adult, my husband well established in his career locally and not willing/able to move. That really limited my job search. Second piece of advice: If you hate being inside or sitting much, do not go into a field that requires you to conform to the office/cubicle life. I am 50 and just now starting to explore career options that really call to me. Writing. Gardening. And possibly pastry chef. I have decided I would rather have multiple part job gigs than one full time career that I hate. It has taken me most of my adult life to realize it is okay to not conform to the traditional job market.
  16. Dmmetler, I am so sorry to hear about the loss of your son. I had HELLP syndrome. My son and I both almost died from it. It was a horrible experience. I am still shocked how little is know about HELLP or how few doctors know about it.
  17. This We drive 600 miles home many years ago - with a baby, blizzard in Oklahoma. We had to pull over several times so I could nurse. It was crazy. Never again.
  18. I would totally do this for him, through a private speech facility. My 16 yr old son just graduated from speech therapy this week. He has oral apraxia and severe aphasia from a pre-birth stroke. It often felt odd, sitting in the facility, with so many younger kids but I was always surprised over school breaks how many older kids went to speech therapy. Mostly kids with autism or who have Down syndrome. Our therapist was amazing. She always worked so hard to make the therapy at son’s age and intellectual level. (We have had awful issues with occupational therapists getting stuck in a preschool level activity mindset!) I think people are so judged by their speech! (But that could be bc my family judges my son’s aphasia as a sign of his lack of socialization.)
  19. GoVanGogh


    The internet is far from anonymous. And - people that would likely hack aren’t posting on the boards. My small world anonymous homeschool board experience: I was at a party a few years ago and this lady was telling a funny vacation story about her and her sister taking their kids on a cross country trip. More than a year later, this lady on a homeschool board posted a comment about that trip. I immediately made the connection. Shortly after that, I was again at a party (kid’s birthday party for mutual friend). I asked her - Hey is your sister... Yes, she was. It was funny and I am harmless. But one never really knows who is reading or why.
  20. Hugs to all! My FIL was diagnosed with cancer last Thanksgiving, then found in two more areas at Christmas. He passed less than two month since later. This is our first holiday without him. DH still hasn’t talked about his dad passing so I don’t know where he is with the holidays. Our little preemie baby that almost died on Christmas turns 16 this Christmas. It is bittersweet. I am so happy and amazed at him, but it is sad how fast the years have gone. Re: menu I love the idea of soups and salads. Easy and can be stretched out. White chili is fun and different. I always use dried beans to keep cost down. Taco bar can also be done for large number of people and maybe asked different people to bring some toppings? Lasagne can be made gluten free with gf noodles. I think it requires a bit more sauce with gf. But lasagne is another dish that can be stretched and made with generic ingredients.
  21. I am so sorry. We’re there special foods your MIL made or FIL loves? Traditions that they shared? I would try to find a few small, but special ways to lift his spirits. Or maybe plan just a quiet evening with the family gathered around.
  22. GoVanGogh


    My husband can live without alcohol. You can live without Taco Bell. It is widely known that fast foods are comfort foods, that they are addictive and, thus, why they are so popular. If your son isn’t underweight, there is no need for him to be an issue in your other son’s struggle. I apologize. I thought he was an equation in the food issues at home. He certainly doesn’t need to keep food hidden just for himself then.
  23. GoVanGogh


    Yes. This. I was in a similar situation as a teenager. Trust me, your stepson knows how you feel. He knows it is your tile, your food, your home. Not his tile, his food, his home. That alone can cause so many emotional issues that, yes, can cause one to seek comfort in food. You don’t have to tell him to his face that you see him as a sloth. He knows it. He feels it. re: cleaning up his mess At 300 pounds, he may struggle to get down and clean it up. Does that give him a free pass? No. But he knows you see it as your tile, not his tile. Maybe if he felt it was his to take care of, he would. re: underweight teen I have an underweight teenager. He has always been underweight. He has been in feeding therapy for years because he has a physical disability that affects how he feels hunger and how he chews/eats. We have tried everything to get weight on him. I had a therapist tell me last year - You know what? This isn’t your battle. He isn’t going to melt away. At 16, he isn’t in danger of dying from lack of food. I would say the same about your son that is underweight. Your son that is overweight is the one that needs help and support, not the one that is underweight. re: Taco Bell I personally hate TB and am repulsed by it, but my DH loves it and craves it. It is his comfort food. He would never turn it down. Sharing from that perspective: I struggle with alcohol addiction. I am in therapy alone and my husband and I are in therapy together. (Honestly, we tanked our marriage when our son was diagnosed with cerebral palsy.) My husband knows I struggle with alcohol. He knows he needs to support me. Last month, he ordered and drank two drinks in front of me. It sent me in a tailspin for days! He was suppose to be my support. He was suppose to have my back. The next week at therapy, this came up. Our therapist ripped into DH and told him he just can’t do that to me, it is too much of a temptation, the message it sends is so harmful. Yes. It does send the message: I don’t have your back. That is what Taco Bell did to your son. It said, I say you need to lose weight but I don’t have your back.
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