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Everything posted by Laurel-in-CA

  1. Taking my oldest's house and art plunder and moving it to her "she shed" -- she moved in with us @ end of April due to job and housing loss from covid. BUT she has a new job (in her field instead of in retail) up here and loves it, so will be with us for awhile. Last weekend they assembled the shed; this weekend we are going through stuff and deciding what to store, what to pass on, and what to trash.
  2. I wanted to add a sci fi recommendation that I just finished -- from the library. It's a bit of rite of passage meets alien type of story set on Coney Island, the first of a trilogy. I enjoyed it and am checking out the next one in the series.
  3. Sort of lost track of posting for the past 3 mo. while adapting to new online work and husband at home job hunting and oldest dd moving back in while trying to fix my back issues. I've been reading and taking recommendations, though! I think the most fun read I had was from a library recommendation, and I would give it a 5. It's as much about healing from trauma as about burros or running or country living by city you can see, it takes some rabbit trails.
  4. Speaking of nautical novels, here's a series that *sounds* like it's about seafaring (The Steerswoman) but really is more about exploring and drawing logical conclusions. And here's another series of post-apocalyptic nautical novels with *lots* of sailing, reflecting a civilization recovering on islands that were barely settled pre-apocalypse. Really good! Not much reading getting done here due to sudden change of situation -- dh is OUT of work and I am doing editting from home, hoping to work more hours soon. He's taking up the kid transport duties and we're struggling over computer access, but I sure hope it won't be this way for very long. Shall we say, financial storms on the horizon, or just in the forecast?
  5. Involuntary major change here....dh was let go from his job of over 9 years. He and I are switching back and forth between computers as he job hunts and I try to keep up with other things. But a blessing to go with the challenge. Unexpectedly got in touch with an old work friend....just to check in because this was *before* dh go his news....and he has hired me to do freelance writing for him on his projects -- at a very generous rate. This helps alleviate the anxiety I feel when talking to health care insurance people and looking at the huge deductibles (I'm insulin-dependent diabetic, so lots of costs out of pocket) and figuring out what to do about our 20-somethings who were on our insurance. We're hoping to stick it out here until May and maybe dh can find a job locally. Once my youngest finishes her DE class at the community college we're going to consider selling the house, but hopefully by then dh's possibilities will be clearer. Oh, and our area just logged its first coronavirus case, so there's that. Another reason to stay safely at home, LOL. Prayers appreciated.
  6. 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.
  7. On The Hobbit, maybe some folks would love a visit? Sure looks like home. Wish we were closer/close enough to try it.
  8. Thanks for your bookish post. I found some new reading material!!
  9. 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.
  10. 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
  11. Our house was a mile from the fire lines in Sonoma County in 2017. *This month* friends are moving back into their rebuilt homes.
  12. 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!
  13. 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!!
  14. 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.
  15. 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.
  16. 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.
  17. 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.
  18. 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!!
  19. 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!
  20. 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.
  21. We're having what was supposed to be a teen hot tub party for our homeschool group this Saturday, so dh was cleaning the hot tub out for summer. Unfortunately, we seem to have sprung a leak in the tub. Does anyone know if it's possible to patch this somehow and what the process would be? Thanks....we hardly use the hot tub, but with the leak I'm nervous about even turning it on. I think we are switching to squirt guns (it's been <100 degF this week) but would still like the hot tub to be functional. Help!
  22. Here's what we've got for an artsy dd: Math -- Financial Principles (Dave Ramsey workbook & DVDs, co-op class, outside reading) -- she's finishing MUS Alg. 2 this year Science -- Health (Abeka + co-op class, outside reading) - already done with Bio & Chem will last into this summer. History -- US history @ home, probably using K12's American Odyssey English -- HSLDA online English class Foreign Language -- Spanish 1 & 2 @ CC; taking Spanish 1 in the fall with a friend so they can study together. Hoping the background in latin will help with grammar and vocab. PE -- Still need to do 1 semester, may take it @ CC in the winter semester Bible -- Still need to do 1 semester, will probably work through a catechism of some kind. Other -- Get her license!!! We're expecting that most of her senior year will be at community college.
  23. Long time ago and a different house. LOL A reminder that even the frustrating seasons will change and the challenging stages will pass. She's a pretty cool kid now!
  24. 3 graduates and 1 still working on it! 26yo -- BFA, working at Goodwill while taking graphic design classes, will be job hunting in May. Has medical issues that make it very hard to freelance (she needs insurance) and that have limited her stamina for side jobs, plus she is still a 4H horse project leader and that takes up most of her free time. We joke that she must love the horses more than the rest of the family, since they're keeping her from moving closer to us. Really, she loves her independence but we miss each other. She would LOVE to get a job that involves both travel AND art. 24yo -- BA Communications, AA Speech, Cert. Marketing -- summer job thru college was at a local zipline tour, where he still works p/t. After college a prof recommendation got him a f/t media/marketing job with a local company but he and they were both frustrated with his learning curve. He has cut back to working p/t (3 days/week) on video and social media projects while also working 3 days @ zipline company. 22yo -- AA in Humanities -- summer job as lifeguard at senior center led to doing in-home health care for disabled adults, including seniors, while at community college. Quitting both her jobs in May to backpack in Europe for the summer with a friend. Not sure what next. almost 16yo -- took her first class at community college this year, planning to get an AA and take at least one gap year. We shall see.
  25. I'd love some recruiting ideas. Our AHG/TL group is at a large church but people there sort of expect church activities to be free and are a bit put off when they find out we charge dues and they pay for uniforms. We used to have a local homeschool convention and advertised there, but that has dwindled and died and we are at a loss as to where else to publicize because public schools won't advertise for religious org. and private schools are unwilling to advertise for us as they see it as competition for tuition $$ or else have a GSA troop that they funnel kids to. Any suggestions?
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