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Mom to Aly

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About Mom to Aly

  • Birthday 11/06/1965

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  • Location
    In Sunny Florida!!!!
  • Occupation
    Homeschool Slave
  1. Gosh, the information keeps coming! This is amazing! As to the question of which math book I use from B&N, it is their brand, Flashkids, and I think it is great. We tried Saxon, Math-U-See, and Singapore. I have to say, my dd is a natural at math, as was I, so that probably makes a diff. But neither she nor I could stand the repetition of the first two, they drove us nuts! These books are workbooks with an example or two of each thing it is teaching, not something that is going to go into long explanation, so if you need that, it won't work. And I lied, they are $6.95--but, with your 20% off, they come out under $6 :D. We also just got the language arts book, eighth grade, and it is great! They have the names of everything, explanations and examples (I taught Freshman English and Creative Writing at a college level and I don't know all the names of these things!)--I am really impressed with this book! It is going to be ideal for this year. Now, I'll admit the unspeakable--I've never really done language arts with my daughter--she does writing and creative writing, but her spelling, punctuation, grammar, vocab, etc, were always so high, I felt I didn't need to (she has had a college reading level since she was seven, something I largely attribute to 1) she started reading, literally, when she was 1 & a half and, 2) I completely took away television when my ex, who was a tv-a-holic, left, when she was 4, so she read as much as others watched tv, not that she really watched it before then). But, I've realized she, and I, need to learn the names to things the gazillion types of verbs and nouns, etc, they now have and I didn't have to learn through my whole life, and somehow survived (even though I have degrees in foreign language, and survived that, too!). My, how the world has changed, lol! All that to say, I think the language arts book is great, too! And I believe they have a spelling book, but I had Spelling Power, and would test her once a year or two, and as long as she was progressing, which she always was, but at least a couple years or more, I felt she was fine. She did better when we didn't work on spelling than the one half year we did, so I left that alone, lol. But now that my Spelling Power book is gone, I'm feeling guilty, so I may break down and get something, rotfl!
  2. Wow! I can't believe all the info you guys have posted!! Thanks so much!!! I'm in northern FL, for those that have asked. And this looks enough to keep me going for a while! Thanks you all, so, so much! I did go to our local library last night, and, while they have nothing like curricula, they have a very good history section, a not so good music and art section, but I did find a few Jim Weiss (not necessary, but oh so fun!!), and found there is a huge homeschool group with 800 families, there own building and their own library!!!! I believe it is non-secular, but I can live with that! I also found a bunch of clubs for my dd to try, and she is thrilled! So, thank you all, so much! As always,k this is the place to go, and the best place to be! So happy I thought to come here, and happy to be back!!!
  3. Thanks so much for the kind replies, and for the information! So nice to see some old friends! As for the positive attitude, better than being down! I was, very, believe me--more like in a true state of shock when I opened the door of my house! You cannot imagine how bad it was--I can't believe anyone would live in that, much less allow it to happen. It was a true, life size litter box without the litter! I mean, everywhere!!! I took her to court (she never showed up), and it turned out her "references" were friends, forgot to mention that, who claimed they had no idea, and when I went to file to try to get in line behind other debtors I met a woman who had been trying to get money from her for three years for basically the same thing, so she has apparently been doing this for a while. Ugh!!! But I truly believe everything happens for a reason, not that my beautiful house was meant to be a litter box, lol, but I do believe we would never have left VA otherwise, or not in a timely fashion, and we really needed to. Now, losing our stuff, on top of everything else being ruined? Haven't figured that one out yet, lol. But, basically, I'm a really upbeat person, and I'm too happy in our new home, which doesn't smell!, and in sunny FL to be down right now. I figure we will find some phenomenal new curriculum, or my dd will be inspired to create her own, or me my own (rotfl!!!) or something like that. Probably the former :D. And it got me back here, where I've wanted to come forever, and haven't had the time!! I've missed to many people here! That is a VERY positive thing!
  4. Well, I've been gone for quite a while, and have a long story to tell, so don't start reading if you don't have some time, lol. The last time I was here, I was out of a job and desperately looking for one where I could remain at home and still homeschool my dd (who is now 12). I had gone through a horrible divorce (my ex had taken all of our money, furniture, etc, we had come home from vacay to an find an empty house, and he had emptied our house, to move in with his girlfried of two years, I, of course, had no idea--he had even taken my dd's things, because his gf had a dd about the same age. During the divorce he became extremely abusive to my dd, so that I would give up alimony in exchange for him giving up visitation, which I did). I have found a job, but it took me almost a year, and I nearly lost my house in the meantime, so I decided to rent it out, and took a townhouse with a friend and her daughter. The woman I rented it to had great refereneces, but, about 5 months into the rental, she stopped paying the rent. It took me several months to get her out, and, when she was finally evicted I discovered that, although the lease said no pets, she had 9 un-neutered mail cats, and no litter box:eek:! We had stored most of our stuff in two bedrooms and locked those; she had broken the locks, shoved our stuff, down the stairs, and her cats had gone all over our stuff, sprayed the walls, just gone everywhere. Our furniture, the little bit I'd bought was destroyed, not that that mattered much, but our house was ruined. I had contractors in, they said they could tear out the floors, the sheetrock, gut the house, but the smell would be in the ceilings, in everything, they thought it was ruined:crying:. As it was, I'd been fighting foreclosure, so I just decided to give in to it, give up my house, and move. I was sick of fighting, so beyond disgusted with my house, I have a lung disease, my daughter has asthma, the house was so filthy I couldn't deal with it, so we packed up what we thought we could salvage, and moved to FL, our dream location, two weeks ago (from VA). Now, the story still isn't over. We had people helping us move, and, somehow, things were "accidentally left behind (another long story I won't get into). I don't have much money, had to give a deposit of $572 to the electric company here, which they hold for THREE YEARS, and, because of what was left behind had to replace much of my computer, had to get a new phone, pots and pans (luckily found some used at a thrift store), and have none of my dd's homeschool books! I got math, science and English at B&N for $24, thank goodness! But I need geography, art and history, and I'm sure more, and was hoping for suggestions of secular things from a library? Need 6th to 8th grade level, American History, American Geography, and Art appreciation as well as practical art? Or very cheap to buy, in the future. I am just out of money now, and only make $8.25 an hour, and to top off everything else, my hours were cut the week after I moved here. (It's been a bad year, lol.) But, that said, I know there is a reason for everything, and am extremely optimistic about this move! We are thrilled to be here, our rent is so much cheaper than my mortgage, and I am afraid we never would have left VA, which is what caused my lung disease (allergies that turned into asthma which turned into a lung disease). I know things will turn around for us here :). Thanks in advance for any help you can offer me!
  5. As you pointed out, you are paying a small fortune for these lessons, and she has had a long (very long) and very fruitful career. I think you can talk to them about that, and how we all have the point when we should retire, and we may need help recognizing that--I know if I had reached that point, I'd want to know, even if I needed someone else to tell me. You aren't helping her dignity by letting her continue. Let her go out with the dignity with which she taught. Let her know how much you have enjoyed having her teach your children, how much they have loved and respected her, that they would like to come back and show her how they have progressed, but that they time has come for them to move on. Just as they will have to leave your nest someday, it is now time for them to leave her's.
  6. I agree with the mutt call. If you get a mix, you have much less chance of probs--purebreeds have the most probs. Mutts have many less--health, temperament, etc. Plus, if you go to a shelter, you are saving a life. Also, although everyone loves a puppy, if you get a dog that is not a puppy, you will know what the temperament is, you won't have to deal with potty training (which can be a nightmare), and teething (they can literally eat your house), etc. My dd and I have volunteered at an SPCA for three years, and they are wonderful. They check the dog to see if it is good with other dogs and cats (something you cannot tell with a puppy--it can just end up being freaky later on). They tell you about the temperament, and all background they can find out. They test it for everything, and it is neutered or spayed before you take it home. And don't just say no to any breed. You can think lab is the greatest breed, then have one that is a total freak! People go on and on about pit bulls, but they are actually some of the best dogs, especially in mixes--incredibly loyal, great with kids--it is that so many people who own them train them to fight or to be vicious, and they have a horrible rep! When we went to get our second dog (got one at an SPCA 70 miles from us) we looked online at petfinder.com, where you can put in your info, and they will show you pics of dogs like what you want, and give info, and you can pick the distance you are willing to go. A ton of shelters participate. You can also look at local shelters. I guarantee you, missing the puppy stage is not a huge deal, but they also show puppies, and you can also check local shelters that may not participate. They main thing is to let the kids know that they may not find the perfect dog and not to settle on one that isn't perfect (easier to say than do). Some places have a waiting period, some want to inspect your house, so even if you find the perfect dog, you may not be able to take him home right away. But this if for keeps, so be patient. Best of luck!!!
  7. Every year since my dd was 2 until about 7 or so, I would buy her a beautiful costume (usually Disney--everything!! wig, shoes, gloves, tiara--all of it) and, on Halloween, she would decide she wanted to be a black cat, dress in black, and want ears and a tail, and that was it! So we had a bunch of Disney costumes from when she was little, that she gave to a needy fam a few years ago that had six little girls. Actually, I had regretted it for the longest time, until she did that, and then I felt great--her decision, she had had them to play with, then one little girl told her they never dressed up because they couldn't buy costumes, and she came home and told me she wanted to do that and I was thrilled!!! Last year we went to a trunk or treat, and there was the greatest costume!! This girl, don't remember the costume actually, but her hair went straight up like an inverted pony tail--the mom had put an empty water bottle on top of her head and put the hair around it and pulled it up into sort of a pony tail and put a clip at the top and poofed it around it and she was--wait for it--CINDY LOU WHO!!!!! it was precious, except the girl hated it!! Cried through most of the night! I let my dd pick what she wants, always. This she wants to be a skelanimal. For those of you who don't know what that is, here is the link http://skelanimals.com/meet-us. What they stand for is loving dead animals, meaning don't wear fur or leather, etc, (we are fanatical vegetarian and completely against animal cruelty). She is going to wear a shirt and knee socks from them, and cat ears and a tail, and paint her face like a cat--hey, wait, we're back to the black cat thing again, aren't we! :001_huh:
  8. :lol: Too, too good!!! I'd do it, too--if I never wanted to associate with them again!! ;)
  9. I haven't written, or really tried to, since dd was nearly a year old. My (then) husband was really into a novel I was writing, we had just sold a company we owned, and he watched her so I could write. I finished it, took a while to shop it around, got an agent, got a book deal, took forever to finalize it, and, just before everything went through, they backed out (this is nearly 3 years later). Just after that, hubby left, and I haven't tried anything since, haven't even tried to sell it again. I'm hoping, if and when my life ever settles down again, I'll try to sell it again, and try to write again--I've wanted to be a writer ever since I can remember, and love writing-- but, as a single homeschool mom, any free moment I have now (that's a joke!!) goes to sleep, cleaning, or, truly, my babe!!
  10. Nachos are actually fine, in my opinion. Or, to make it really easy, I do a bean and cheese and salsa dip (we are vegetarians), and we love that (refried beans do well too) and that is plenty of protein, with chips. We love chili, and that can lead to tacos or burritos another night, and making a "taco bar" is always fun--setting out the fixings and letting them "build" their own. Same for a "salad bar". A choice of toppings for pasta might be something they prefer--my dd likes a different sauce than I do, so I split the pasta, actually into three different sauces, and we each have some of each. Mac and cheese is always one of her faves--I make it homemade, and add milk, which makes it stay soft and not dry out. Breakfast for dinner is a fave--scrambled eggs with extra milk to keep them soft, and American cheese mixed in--you don't taste the cheese, but it helps. Also, an "omelet bar" is great, where they can pick what they want in it (we seem to be a "bar" home). We were recently given a fajita maker, and that has been a huge hit, and sooo healthy!!! That's all I can think of now--anyone else?
  11. Well, I am half Indian, my dad was Punjabi, and I was raised vegetarian, not vegan, but I am fanatical. I like Julie Sahni, although not all her stuff is veg, but I ignore what is not. You can make anything vegan, and with I cut back on the oil in all of it, including in the ones listed before--Indian's have an incredibly high rate of cholesterol and heart disease--wonder why? There was a great healthy Indian cookbook on Amazon discussed here last year--anyone remember the name? PS The main thing with Indian food is making up your own masala (mixture of spices you like--mine is based on cumin, my fave spice), then the rest is really easy. I'm serious--work on this, and the rest is so easy, it is shocking. If you are a good cook, a "natural", once you have your own masala, you can make any Indian dish, no prob. Good luck!!
  12. I can't thank you all enough!!!! These sound amazing!!! I can't wait to get on all of this!!! I haven't had a paying job in 17 years (showing my age)--my ex and I owned our own company, and he took a salary, I didn't--yet another way he screwed me--so disability would be minimal because I had to have worked ten years to get it based on my income, even though I earned more than many here would have earned in ten years, working in Manhattan, and the types of jobs I had, so disability really isn't something that would help me much. Plus, honestly, if I find something I can do, I'd rather. I had no idea there were so many viable options at home! They have also told me I will probably be turned down at least once, and have to appeal--that seems to be the way here. And our real hope is still to sell our house and move from here. The true source of my lung disease is VA--it started as allergies that turned into asthma that turned into this and has just gotten worse and worse--but I am so sick all of the time, I can't even pack. Plus, my ex took the ins money to repair major hurricane damage, and I haven't been able to save enough to repair any thing. Also, I had yet another shock today. I went to try to talk to my mom this morn (I have had no real contact with her for months--my sister won't let me near her), and insisted she see me (basically stood outside their apt yelling until they let me in), and my mom was very coherent, not at all like I thought. She basically said that both of my sisters, the one I'd talked about, and my other sis, in NY (who makes over $80,000 a year with her hubby) have convinced her that I have taken from her long enough and it is their turn. She told me I have been a leech and a burden, and she knows I can do for myself, and she is going to give to them from now on, and I can end up homeless for all she cares, again, in front of my daughter (she did this in front of my daughter last time, too. I thought I'd go by and sit and talk to her today, my daughter in the other room, but she didn't give me that chance). Doesn't sound very coherent, and I know how alzheimer's can go, both my grandmother and great-grandmother died from it, but she wasn't really different than she usually is, just not saying nice things. Anyway, my biggest worry is not having worked in so long, but these ideas are so great! Thank you all, I'll keep looking here, and keep you updated! Keep em coming!! Thanks again!!
  13. I can't say I'm shocked because this is exactly what happened to me, word for word. May 27, 1990 was the worst day of my life. I was 22 weeks, 5 days pregnant, and I started having contractions. I'd been to the hospital the day before, because I thought I'd had contractions, which had stopped, and they told me it was my imagination. I called the hosp, they told me I was over worried. I called them again, they told me it was gas. I called again, they told me not to call back. Then my water broke. When I got there, a nurse saw me, told me there was no hope, the baby would not survive, her lungs would not be developed enough. I went through 17 hours of labor before she was born--it was Memorial Day weekend, and the doctor called in, but refused to come, since it was "hopeless"--I never saw a dr, but was delivered by a nurse, who would come in every hour or so, until right before delivery. I held my daughter who lived for 6 minutes after birth. I was so grateful for that time. It took 7 years and 9 specialists to tell me why I lost her--all because I was not examined or delivered by a doctor. And, btw, all of this was in Westchester County, right outside of Manhattan, in NY. I had an incompetent cervix, but it shrunk during pregnancy, did not show up before--I finally found a dr. who had had the same thing, and she felt it was that, and told me she would make sure, no matter what, I would not lose another child. Every male dr. I saw said "Try again, if it happens again, then you'll know", like I could live through that again! I got pregnant in 1998, my cervix shrunk at 5 & 1/2 weeks, I was put on full bed rest with bathroom and meal privileges at 6 weeks (though I did eat lying down--didn't want to take any chances), had a double cerclage at 12 weeks--where they sew your cervix shut--had 4 bouts with premature labor, then had PIH with super-imposed eclampsia. But, in 1999 I had my daughter, who made it, just short of 35 weeks, and is perfect in every way. When my cervix first shrunk, my dr.said she doubted I would make it past 7 months, but she said my vigilence and willingness to be so strict about bedrest is what did it--she said that is what most women won't stick to, which shocked me. The hardest thing was not knowing--they could have hung me upside down for 9 months, if only I'd known my darling baby would be alright. I still miss my first daughter every day; I sobbed through writing this, it feels like yesterday. I thought time would help, and it has, but it still hasn't taken it away, and that horrible hospital was, in my opinion, horribly, horribly negligent in everything they did, or, rather, didn't do.
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