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About Laurel-in-CA

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    Hive Mind Royal Larvae
  • Birthday December 16

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    Northern CA

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  1. Found a new favorite sword and sorcery series this week. It seems to be labeled YA, but I thought it was a great read, collision of four different cultures, a couple of different religious systems and kingdoms built very loosely around Greece/Asia Minor. This is the first book (6 in the series, so I'm still working on it). For SF lovers, has anyone read MCA Hogarth? This is the first book I read by her and I thoroughly enjoyed the series. She has another series that is darker and more adult, too -- the covers are pretty clear so you can tell the more pastoral from the more adult titles. Lots of aliens and humanoids of various derivations. Meanwhile just babysitting the newly spayed, newly adopted dog after we had to put down our old guy last week. We're all missing his introverted presence, but the new extrovert is a lot more cuddly so that helps bridge the gap.
  2. On The Hobbit, maybe some folks would love a visit? Sure looks like home. Wish we were closer/close enough to try it.
  3. Thanks for your bookish post. I found some new reading material!!
  4. I just read all three books in the Linesman series. I agree with your recommendation!! In terms of SciFi/Fantasy, I really like P.C. Hodgell's Godstalker Chronicles, tales of a mysterious young woman named Jame and her explorations with native and imported dieties. The author was stuck at book 3 for a long time while, I suppose, she lived her life, but now is retired and has added up to book 8. The first ones are the best, though, IMHO.
  5. Someone mentioned looking for time travel reads for next year. I wanted to recommend Jodi Taylor and her Chronicles of St. Mary's. They are quite a romp. The first one is:'s+1&qid=1577336356&s=digital-text&sr=1-1
  6. Our house was a mile from the fire lines in Sonoma County in 2017. *This month* friends are moving back into their rebuilt homes.
  7. Negin -- I'm loving your pictures of Sevilla. My brother has lived in a small village near Malaga (also Andalucia) for some years and your pictures take me right back to our 25th anniversary visit to Spain!
  8. I enjoyed the whole series of books that follow Quarter Share and take the hero through captaincy of a trading empire. Good stuff. I read Polaris Rising this week....I'd read a sequel...I guess. But not sure this feisty heroine is that unique. Love SciFi recommendations!!
  9. Another mom and I from our co-op started a teen game night to help our girls feel more comfortable with the new group. It's been pretty effective.
  10. Y'all need a park day. If you can't find one, make one by showing up at a centrally located park with clean bathrooms and good visibility every week or every other week at the same time. Bring snacks, drinks and camping chairs and a game or two to keep in the car. Also a basic medical kit for scrapes. Stay at least 2 hours, maybe more. Moms can talk or crochet or whatever, kids can play very open-endedly. We always had a group building forts, some moms walking circuits, some moms breastfeeding, and everything in between. Even if other homeschoolers don't come, by hanging out regularly in the same time frame you may find them or find other friends. I hope you can find that. My family has also done 4-H. It led to adult mentors for a couple of my kids, but not too many same-age friends. And it was GREAT preparation for public speaking (we went to statewide competitions several years) and learning the rules of order for conducting a meeting.
  11. Arcadia -- We are all so happy to see the last of those evacuation orders lifted!! Now I am waiting for PG&E to turn my gas on so I can have heat and cook and shower. Minor concerns compared to last week's this time, when I was packing to leave. Thinking of those still facing raging fires in SoCal.
  12. Anything is better than another firestorm and the 4500-plus homes that burned in 2017 in Santa Rosa CA. Both southern and northern CA can get very high winds. In SoCal they're called Santa Anas, usually hot, blowing off the Mojave desert to the sea. In NorCal they're not always hot, but just as dry. This year they clocked wind gusts of 90-100 mph in the foothills/higher elevations, 50-60 mph sustained. Once a fire starts, the winds drive its expansion pretty quickly. They also create a lot of debris, downed branches, etc., which can impact power lines, hence the pre-emptive shutoffs. About 2/3 of my county (Sonoma) was shut off and about 1/2 evacuated for several days. But this time no loss of life from fire (one person killed by traffic accident), only one major injury. Once we're back home we STILL have to wait to have power and gas turned back home. Our house has power but no heating and nights are cold! But anything is better than another firestorm, right? Cooking in my crockpot and microwave and thankful for it. Adding: They probably were overly cautious and evacuated many more people than needed, but a lot of areas don't have many ways out and traffic can be crazy. This year instead of being surprised by fire (2017) we had time to pack and evacuate in day time. That was huge! I still needed to get some winter clothes, but at least I had socks and underwear and our wedding album and passports....all of which I forgot in 2017.
  13. Spend the day in 3 layers of clothes waiting for my gas to be turned back on. Thankful that we didn't lose electricity during the fire and evacuation, so I don't have a nasty refrigerator to clean out. Thankful for returning to my own bed instead of an air mattress on friends' floor. Goodbye, Kincaid fire, please no more fires this year!!
  14. I got little water guns and some water balloons and buckets. Unfortunately, we have retaining wall all around our back yard and sliding would not be safe. Good ideas, though!
  15. We think the leak is in the tub itself...saw bubbles coming up. Tub has had water in it all winter, so not dried out. It was a slug habitat, though. Eeew.
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