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About Sk8ermaiden

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    Hive Mind Worker Bee

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  1. Uggggh. I do not want to face the pressure of planning for middle school.
  2. I should have said, the *highest* options are insanely low. I know lots of people find creative ways to cut costs or just don't do things that cost. But for the wide variety of things boardie kids are involved in, the ceiling on this should really be 10+ times what it is.
  3. These options are insanely low. I don't even want to mention what we spend on her competitive gymnastics. My son takes a one hour, once a week, recreational sports class. It's as basic as you can get as far as activites and there's a sibling discount because it's through DD's gym. It's still $900 a year. $80 a month is standard for any weekly class, sports or otherwise in our low COL metro. We spend a few hundred on Girl Scouts because as a troop we choose to use personal money instead of troop money fairly frequently. I spend about $180 all in for my 2 kids to do summer league swim which is 2.5 months long and considered a tremendous value.
  4. Outfoxed is still being played every time we do games, and Trekking the National Parks is one of our family's favorite games. We played those on New Year's along with Destruct 3, which my kids love.
  5. Yeah, my issue (I don't want to go back and quote the response cause I'm lazy) was at least a few people saying that if it were allergies they'd only be sick twice a year so they were either actually ill or it was probably mold in their house. It's just very ignorant of the wide range of what allergies can really look like. We've been able to pin down that my kid is allergic to Pine, Cedar and Juniper for sure. So she is basically sick all year. Two or three times a year she will look like death warmed over. Sometimes (especially during the big pine blow here where the houses, cars, and streets are coated in yellow) she will feel too sick to even go to gymnastics, which is a huge deal. My husband and I both had the kind of allergies where you get sniffly in pine season and we had NO IDEA what allergies could look like. Also, I don't know a single allergy sufferer with an inhaler unless there is an additional diagnosis of something like asthma. Also, the poster who said allergy snot would be clear. I used to believe that and take my kid in when her snot got yellow, assuming it had moved into sinus infection territory. Her doctor finally told me that that just means the snot is really thick and concentrated and *can* imply a sinus infection, but doesn't have to. That is why it is often super thick and gross in the morning when someone wakes up compared to the rest of the day - it's just been building up in there all night. And I hear what you're saying Ktgrok. I also get annoyed if someone is bringing obviously sick children to a playdate (or gymnastics! Bugs move through teams so fast even when no one has signs yet. It's 10x worse when they DO have symptoms.) And my mom friends all have a habit of texting ahead of time when they think they might be coming down with something or are just getting over something and letting the other party decide their comfort level. I just think it's fairly impossible to tell by visible symptoms or frequency of symptoms if someone has allergies or an illness.
  6. My daughter has pretty severe allergies, which she gets on and off, year round. We've ruled out causes in the home (it is actually better in the house). I'm also in the camp of fevers, stomach bugs, or feeling miserable, we stay home, but it we stayed home for anything with the appearance of a cold we would almost never leave the house. My daughter's allergies present like a mild-moderate cold. If she has any other symptoms besides congestion/runny nose/headache we stay home, but I'm not going to lock her up like an invalid because she has allergies. I will say that getting her on Claritin full time made a huge difference. I used to only start it when she had allergies flare up, but of course it takes days to start working. I just didn't want her to be on meds ALL the time. Ugh. But since she started on it year round, she only gets icky at the biggest allergy times of the year - when even the meds are not enough. (And Yellowstone and Grand Canyon. Those nearly killed her.)
  7. I think there is a big difference between "I want to see my FOO on the holidays and some traditions are important to me" and "I will do exactly what I please and not bend an inch for anyone else." It was stated that it is not that SIL prefers early holiday dinners - she seems to veiw prime holiday meal time as later and will only spend that time with *her* family, forcing the Garga's holiday meals early - and Christmas Eve was not a compromise - the only reason she allowed it was because it wasn't an important holiday time to her. Some people are just EXTREMELY selfish and it's OK to recognize that. My now Ex-SIl was like that. Everyone in the whole family bent over backwards to accomodate her selfish and frequently-changed demands. I'm fairly certain that she really did not want to spend any time at my in-laws at all, but her husband and child also were not ever allowed to go anywhere without her, so... Small consolation was that I am pretty sure we drove her INSANE by constanly accomodating her ridiculousness. She wanted to be able to say she couldn't come but it was impossible to do when we were so willing to change plans for her.
  8. My MIL keeps bringing up extremely divisive political opinions at holiday dinners. She did it at Thanksgiving and then again (the same question!!) at Christmas. I don't think she's trying to start a fight. I think she truly believes BIL and I would just naturally agree with her, of course. We don't. Him halfheartedly and me vehemently. Ugh.
  9. OK, except the historical equivalent would be someone saying their child was never going to learn to ride a horse, because they could walk everywhere, or hire a carriage to take them. And 200 years ago, outside of major metros, plenty of people would be saying, "Not here you wouldn't!"
  10. My only thought is that here in Houston, where housing is cheap, way out in the burbs, a 1 bed, 1 bath apartment rents for more than my mortgage on my 4 bedroom, two story home. I have a friend who has three children and is forced into much larger apartments that she absolutely can not afford. But buying a home is off the table because of the large down payment required. A tiny home (or in the case of my friend, something like a converted bus) can be economically within reach for more people, and assuming there is a place they're allowed to park it that isn't $$$, they can actually improve their financial situation while living there.
  11. People on cruise forums always say things like, "How much time do you really spend in the room?" A lot. I spend a lot of time in the room. So much so that I don't think I could go back to an inside ever. I like to lie around and read with the balcony doors all the way open. I like that there is always hot and available Indian food in the buffet. I like that now that my kids are older, I can go to the dining room and be served meals without having to do anything. (We rarely go out to eat.) I enjoy Royal Carribean's extremely overpriced cupcake decorating class with my daughter, and I like a few of the better-done shows. That's about it. I appreciate that cruising is a very cost effective way to get places, though our last one had a few too many issues. I don't feel comfortable giving up control of THAT much of my vacation to another entity. It has soured me on cruising for a while - we already had a tenuous relationship at best.
  12. Ugh, my now ex-SIL was like that too. "Like we always do!" Um, I don't know who you think you're gaslighting, but none of us have such poor memories.
  13. Yeah, I live in Texas and if you relied on Uber to get to places you couldn't walk or scooter, you'd be housebound or bankrupt in a year. SO expensive.
  14. My kids are getting older, and the social demands of the season hit me hard this year! I vow to take care of several things in October next year like ordering the swim team Christmas cards, which is my job, and putting several cheesecakes in the deep freeze, since I will apparently be voluntold to bring them on the least convenient days to make cheesecake. I also may move our favorite tradition - homemade gingerbread houses - closer to new year's, because everything slows down then and it will be easier on me. As I look over my children's gifts, I WISH I could get people to buy less. It's all good stuff, but as far as stuff they REALLY wanted or needed? Like half. I really am thinking about hiding everything that wasn't on their list for the annual gift drive next year. If they remember and ask for it, they can have it and if not...away it goes to someone who has less. I really need to start pushing the museum memberships and lesson punch cards again. Funds towards DD's gymnastics camp...The grandparent spending is out of control.
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