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About marbel

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    Hive Mind Queen Bee

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    Suburban Philadelphia
  • Interests
    reading, cooking, sewing

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  1. Oh that is so beautiful. What a lovely way to care for someone.
  2. Don't feel guilty. Based on what I know of you from these boards, you are not going about mindlessly buying worthless junk and throwing it out equally mindlessly. I sometimes get angry at all the guilt tossed at people about throwing stuff away, and I wouldn't be surprised if that adds to the burden charities are facing with receiving unsellable/unusable stuff, because people feel like they shouldn't throw things in the trash. Some things just have to go to the landfill. Be thoughtful, of course (as I am sure you are) and then let the stuff go. Holding on to junk doesn't do anyone any good.
  3. Low stacks of oversized books? Or any books, really, with bookends keeping them up?
  4. Maybe I'm not getting the scale of it right, but isn't it kinda low for photos? I like the idea of baskets for keys, gloves, and such. Though I know that can get messy.
  5. Can I add two more cents? This is something I struggle with personally, so I hope it doesn't seem lecture-y. Support/encourage people who bring beauty and pleasure into our lives. Artists, musicians, authors, etc. This is so depending on financial resources, I know. But I struggle with always using the library instead of buying the book (new, in hardback even!) so the author actually makes some money from it. I'm not thinking of established authors who already make vast amounts of money, but newer authors who aren't... and won't, if people don't buy their books. And, at full price, at a bookstore, not discounted Amazon price (which is still of course better than not buying the book at all). Or music. Used to be we would buy records, and some of that money went to the musician(s). Now, musicians pretty much have to give the music away for close to free, so they have to make it up with higher ticket and swag prices. So, maybe I should buy the t-shirt from bands whose music I stream for free. (I know they get something from streaming services but pretty sure it's not much.) Again, I am not worried about established artists who have made a lot of money already, but younger ones trying to get established. And artists... I know historically artists have relied on wealthy patrons but sometimes I'd like to buy the painting, photograph, or print from the artist. Or the beautifully-sewn item, instead of thinking "oh I can do this myself" which I can't to to the level of excellence, and probably won't anyway. Is buying art in whatever form a good use of our resources? Do we want people to be able to make beautiful art for us to enjoy? Like I said, I struggle with this because I believe, in theory anyway, that the answer to both those questions is yes, but feel a bit of a hypocrite because I don't actually spend my money that way.
  6. Seriously? This idea disgust me so much, on so many levels. Horrible for the employee. Debasing for the person answering the door - because it's not about being comfortable with your own body, but about using it to shock another person. Our culture continues to disgust me in new ways, every day. And, Scarlett? What the heck? Was your mom delivering something, or was the person caught off guard by the knock on the door, or ? I know you probably don't know the answer.
  7. Little things matter and we can't all do big things. There are often different times of life when different things are possible. I've had times when I've been able to give of my time and money very generously. Money to causes I consider worthy (sponsoring children, donating to medical care for underserved people) and time to help with my church, local homeschooling organizations, things like that. Now, I don't have the funds or time to do those things. So I try to focus on being kind to everyone I come across. I work in a very negative environment. It's a call center where I support a bank. The atmosphere is stressful and chaotic. None of my coworkers is happy working there, but for various reasons we are not able to find better employment (for me, it was being out of the workforce for 20 years while i homeschooled my kids). I try to bring a little humor to the place, and be a calming influence. I am conscious of being kind to the customers I interact with even though many of them seem to be completely ignorant of how banking works, some are rude, some are beyond rude. For me right now, that's the best thing I can do to make a small part of the world better. And, what Wendy said about being kind to wait staff and other service people. Y'all have no idea how much we get beaten down by nasty customers and often by our own bosses.
  8. Our experience with COBRA was pretty straightforward. The cost was the same as we'd been paying, because my husband's employer did not pay anything toward insurance. So if you are used to the employer paying a big chunk of the premium, the cost will be higher. (I had been terrified because I'd always heard "COBRA is so expensive!" Well, in our case, it wasn't any more expensive than what we'd been paying.) I don't know if different COBRA administrators do things differently in terms of payment. The one thing I hated about it was that we had to pay by check; electronic payments were not accepted. And, according to the documentation, one late payment would end coverage. So that was stressful for me but I am easily stressed that way, and much prefer electronic payments to mailed paper checks. I hope you are not on it long and that he has a new contract soon!
  9. marbel

    Chia seeds?

    Thanks for reminding me of this! I made one this morning. I am supposed to drink a lot of water with lemon juice (supposed kidney stone prevention, but also, water with lemon juice tastes better than plain water to me). I threw in some chia and waited a bit while they "activated" (Thanks Chris in VA)... as I sat there waking up I was sort of mesmerized by their floating action as I stirred them. Another bonus! 🙂 My guess on the weight loss thing is - the fiber is filling so there is less hunger --> less eating. Two hours after having mine, I am still not ready to eat. (Though I prefer a later breakfast anyway, on days I don't have to eat early.)
  10. marbel

    Chia seeds?

    I love chia seeds in overnight oatmeal - there are loads of recipes online. Also in yogurt with some hemp seeds and fruit. I've made cookies with them. But this is the most wonderful use for chia seeds: Seedy Power Sprinkle from Epicurious: I make a batch of this every week and put it on yogurt, cottage cheese, ice cream, eat it by the spoonful... it is so delicious.
  11. If you are going to have more time in Philly, have you heard about Eastern State Penitentiary? It surprisingly interesting and beautiful in an eerie sort of way. 13 seems a good age, I think. Can't remember how old my kids were when we went. Not to complicate things for you!
  12. Depending on the time you go (and where in Philly you are leaving from) it can take 2.5 - 3.5 hours to get to Gettysburg. Philadelphia traffic is no joke - I live less than 20 miles from Center City but it can take me over an hour to drive there if traffic is bad. Once you are out of the metro area traffic should be fine. So going back and forth could take 5-7 hours of your day. (If I am correct that you were planning to take the car pack to Philly after returning from Gburg.) Maybe you have taken that into consideration - I don't assume you haven't checked traffic maps for the areas. I think you could see all of Gettysburg in a full day; I'm just concerned you won't have a full day with all the driving to and fro, and depending on when you can pick up/drop off the car.
  13. Even my military history loving kid thinks Valley Forge is boring. But we've never done a tour... don't even know if such exist. Gettysburg is worth time. We have been twice, even my history-hating kid loved it. I live near Philadelphia. The old city area is neat, and sure there is a lot of history there, but it's super walkable and most of the things on your list are very close together. The Rocky steps... meh. The art museum is truly wondrous, and I love it, but if I wasn't going to the museum I wouldn't bother with Rocky. (Though the riverside by the art museum is beautiful too.) And, honestly, if the lines for the Liberty Bell are long, I'd skip it. Minority opinion here I'm sure but... not worth the time. Buy a postcard? I'd figure out a way to spend more time in Gettysburg than Philly. But of course you know better than I what is important to you, so ignore as desired. 🙂 Hershey is a nice amusement park, but not very different from any other amusement park around so I wouldn't go out of the way for it unless you/your kid have a super love for amusement parks. If you go, inside the park is one of the nicest small zoos I have ever seen. Seconding someone else about Amtrak from NYC to PHL - I have never done it, but I am pretty sure there are better ways. I think it's New Jersey Transit or PATH train to Trenton, then Septa to Philly. There is also the Bolt Bus and some other buses. But I can't really advise; I've never done it myself. But look around a bit. This sounds like a fabulous trip! I never made it to Wmsburg or Jamestown with my kids, a big regret. I hope you have a wonderful time!
  14. Just a note on bullet journals - the original intent was to create a simple method for people to keep track of whatever they wanted to keep track of. Artwork and color-coding came later - and I agree that they are very inspiring but impractical for me. Not trying to sell you on it, but if you are interested, here is the original video; your book lists would be "collections." It's really very simple, artistic ability and time to be creative not required! ETA I just to put in a link, not embed the video! Sorry for taking up all the space.
  15. I used Word or Excel (or similar, LibreOffice or Google Docs). Now I use Goodreads. Of if you want a physical place, a notebook of some sort with sections for people or subjects. A cheap spiral or composition notebook with tape flags or other dividers for each section would be cheap and simple, though not sortable as an electronic file would be. (Unless this is what you mean by bullet journaling? Not sure I understood that part of your OP.)
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