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Posts posted by LizzyBee

  1. Based on the circumstances you described, you can claim her as a dependent. Even if you don't claim her, she cannot claim herself (because she is eligible to be claimed by you), and she cannot have a random relative claim her. If someone else beats you to the punch and your e-filed return gets rejected, print it out and mail it in. If/when you receive a notice from the IRS because of two people claiming her, write a letter explaining the circumstances and send it to the address on the notice. If you choose to call instead, make sure you get the ID number and name of the agent you speak with. The problem with calling is that 10 agents will give you 8 different answers (this is pretty well established by studies). So putting everything in writing and keeping copies of what you send is the better option, imo. 


    If she leaves your home to go to college full time, your home is still her tax home, so she is considered to live with you for tax purposes while she is away. As long as she is a full time student for part of the month for 5 consecutive months (in other words, one semester), and under 24 years old, and you provide more than half of her support, you can claim her as a dependent regardless of her income level.


    For more information, you can check out www.irs.gov.



  2. One more pic. This sweet smile... is why nobody believes me until they spend an hour with him, lol. I see pure mischief in the smile :)




    This reminds me of two things. One time, my dh commented that when dd got up in the morning, she would come in the living room and her eyes darted all around the room as if she was thinking, "What can I get into first?"  Another time, a friend met dd for the first time. She said, "She's adorable! She can't possibly be as bad as you say she is!" And I replied, "Yeah, it's a good thing she's cute, because some days, that's all that's keeping her alive." :-) 

  3. No ideas - just commiseration. My youngest slept in our bed until she was 3 1/2. To get her to fall asleep, we had to put her in a wrestling hold and let her fight it until she wore herself out. At 3 1/2, we moved her to her bed one night and she actually didn't end up back in ours. When she woke up, I picked her up and said, "What a big girl you are!" She slept in her own bed ever since. It was good timing because we were at our wit's end. Dh and I both were not sleeping well and starting to have back pain from being crowded and uncomfortable. 


    Even after that, she was still high maintenance. A friend of mine kept telling me it would get better when she's five. One day, when she was about 5 1/2, I realized that life with her really was much easier. Her speech was pretty good by then (she had 6 years of speech therapy from 3-10), and being able to communicate really helped. 


    She is 13 now and she's a sweetheart. But over Christmas break, she had about 10 days off from dance classes, and we got a glimpse of what life with her would be like without Irish dancing. She dances about 12 hours a week and still craves more. It channels her energy, and it gives her the stimulation she craves for SPD.


    When she was younger, we had a really awesome OT. Besides the sensory room, we did Therapeutic Listening Program, Interactive Metronome, brushing, core exercises, and fine motor exercises.

  4. About the IQ score: Dyslexics tend to score lower than their actual ability / aptitude, sometimes much lower. In addition, you may know that IQ is not a set score; it tends to increase for students and those who keep their brains stimulated through middle age, then decrease in the elderly. My severely dyslexic dd scored with an average IQ at age 7, but at age 13, it has become clear that IQ score is bunk. One of my dyslexic nephews was tested twice, a few years apart, and his score had increased 20 points.



  5. It sounds like she might have a slow processing speed, and unfortunately, there's not any proven treatment for that yet. Two of my kids are dyslexic; one has slow processing speed and her dyslexia is mild, and the other one has severe dyslexia and fast processing speed.


    The one with the slow processing speed also gets frustrated easily, and she absolutely hates feeling put on the spot. She has excellent reading comprehension and memory.  She reads slowly, but remembers all of it. From your post, your dd sounds a lot like her.


    ETA: I told my dd that she was dyslexic before we had her evaluation done. I was confident enough from the reading I'd done. Her face lit up! It's true what the experts say - kids would rather be dyslexic (or whatever the case may be) than stupid. Even if they never vocalize it, many kids with LDs think they're stupid and they're terrified that other people will find it out. 

    • Like 4
  6. We found out yesterday that dd is going to Worlds! She will just be doing teams, not solos, but still… She is so excited. She cried when her teacher told her he wants her to go. And for the next five weeks, they will have an assistant teacher to help them get ready for Worlds… another former Riverdancer and the captain of the Heartbeat of Home Irish dance troupe. I am in awe at the opportunities she has and I am so proud of how hard she has worked to get to this point.

    • Like 10
  7. BBC website. I wish I'd started reading it years ago. I don't watch any national news, only local, because I don't think there is such a thing as "news" in America any more. 


    ETA: I just saw in a previous post that PBS carries BBC news. I'll have to see if that's on at a time I can watch it.

  8. Hubbie made a roast, but the meat turned out dry and tough.


    Can I do anything with the leftovers to make them more appetizing? Perhaps a dipping sauce or something?


    Thanks for any suggestions!


    You could try making a thin gravy and simmering it on low heat for a few hours. I wouldn't do it in the crockpot because the crockpot tends to make beef tough even when cooked with lots of liquid.


    If you have a pressure cooker, cooking it in some broth for 15 minutes if sliced or 30-45 minutes if whole on 15 lbs. will tenderize it. Disclaimer, I've never tried it with meat that's already cooked, but it works wonders with raw roasts.

  9. My 13 yo also wants to be an ID teacher. We are going to start on grades this year if we can find any locations close enough. Last year, they were offered at the Nation's Capitol feis, so we are hoping they will be again. The grades are currently not required to become a TCRG if the teacher has enough experience (our teacher traveled with Riverdance and other productions, so he was able to sub that instead of doing grades). But they will be mandatory effective 1/1/18.  http://www.clrg.ie/documents/GradeSyllabus2015.pdf


    She has considered other options for a "day job" but so far, she hasn't found something else she wants to do. She wants to own a studio, so I told her she should plan on getting an associates degree in Business Management at an absolute minimum. We've also looked at which colleges have ID teams, but I haven't compiled a list yet since we're still 5 years away from college. If she has an opportunity to perform, I wouldn't be opposed to delaying college. However, as much as she loves performing, she wants to teach rather than performing professionally. 



  10. I'm particularly interested if you're just cooking for your own family without others to help with bringing things. I've got a wretched upper respiratory virus and am not feeling great, so I'm looking for some ideas. My brain is currently fogged up. :confused1:


    I just have my immediate family here. Yesterday, I made sausage, white bean, and kale soup for lunch. I made roast beef, mashed potatoes, and broccoli for dinner. Today, we are eating leftovers.


    The roast beef recipe I used was super easy. Heat oven to 500 degrees. Season roast with salt and pepper and put in pan fat side up (the fat will run down and baste the meat). Put roast in preheated oven and reduce heat to 475. Do not cover or add water. Cook 7 minutes per pound to sear and this holds the juices in. Turn off oven (if gas stove, reduce to 200 deg because it won't hold the heat in) and leave the roast in for 20 minutes per pound. Do not open the oven at any point until the end. Rest on counter for 20 minutes and slice thinly. Serve au jus or use the drippings to make gravy. This method makes a tough round roast tender!


    We had Mrs. Smith's apple pie and ice cream for dessert.

  11. I was perimenopausal when diagnosed with leukemia. Not a good combo. I was insane, couldn't stand to be in the room with myself some days. Then I started having neurological symptoms and could barely get out of bed. I was tested for a ton of stuff, and my doctors started suggesting hormones. I didn't believe them until I went 90 days without a period…. and on the day it started, I felt the fog beginning to lift. Within a couple weeks, I felt normal. My doctor gave me progesterone to start another period because I didn't want to risk going 90 days or more again, and I started the pill on that cycle. (My FSH was only 37, and she prescribes an estrogen based pill instead of HRT if it's below 50.)  That was two years ago and I am still normal. My doctor normally only prescribes the pill or HRT for 2 years, but she's letting me go for another year because of my other health issues. So we'll see what happens in a year.


    All that to say, yes, it helped my mood immensely.  :thumbup1:

  12. I seem to have the most trouble keeping my skillet in prime condition.  I season it as best as I can from watching youtube, I use it, wash it out with only water and dry as best as my dish towel will allow. 


    When I take it out to use again it looks awful and everything sticks.


    I do it all wrong, but it works. I wash my cast iron skillets with soapy dishwater, rinse well, dry the bottom and put it on a hot burner to dry. Then before it completely cools off, I use a paper towel to season it with crisco. I just threw out the rest of our crisco because it was old, so I'll try coconut oil next time. Just don't do what my sister did - put the skillet on the stove and forget about it. It turns out they will break. :-)

  13. I am also a smallish person but I've had a belly ever since puberty that only got bigger when I had kids. I need jeans that come up to just below my belly button to prevent muffin top. My two favorite pairs at the moment are Talbots and Not Your Daughter's Jeans.  I tried on a pair of Eddie Bauer jeans that I really liked, but they didn't have my size in stock, so I don't own a pair yet. Charter Club at Macy's works for me too.

  14. That is a great idea! Did you have to do anything in particular to get the insurance to pay for physical therapy, such as a referral from a primary care doctor?


    I know our TC is concerned about the injury rate, but he doesn't seem to know what to do about it.


    I think our insurance does require a referral, which we got from our family doctor after a sprained foot. 


    Is your TC making sure that the students are conditioning and stretching enough? Our kids worked through T25 *as a warm-up* for class to condition and build strength. Sometimes they stretch for 20 minutes before they start dancing. We were having a lot of injuries too, so I'm glad to see the owner and TC being proactive. Also, after longer classes, we fill a trashcan with ice water and the students get in it two at a time for two-five minutes, depending on how long they can stand it.

    • Like 1
  15. Thank you, that is very helpful.


    Irish dance is not as heavily female dominated as ballet (though boys are still the minority); I am finding ballet harder to navigate, but my hope is too build some strong basic dance technique. I've been particularly worried by the frequency of injuries at our Irish studio.


    I've read that ID teachers are not as well trained as ballet teachers in proper form and injury protection. One thing that has helped our school immensely is a workshop done by a physical therapist whose specialty is biomechanics.  He and his colleagues are the PT's for the Carolina Ballet, so you know they are the best in our city. A lot of our kids are now his patients. He is all about injury prevention and not just treating injuries. Our daughter sees him about every 3 weeks, and in between she has exercises to do that are based on her weakest area.  He started with her hips, because her hip strength was in the 40s when it should have been at least equal to her body weight (80 lbs).  Now that her hips are stronger, her knees are her weakest area and they developed tendonitis, so her exercises are geared to strengthen her knees. So far, our insurance has paid for all of her appointments, but if they stop, we will keep going because we've seen how important this is. If your city has a professional ballet company, call and ask which physical therapists they use, because they will be the best for Irish dancers too.


    ETA: Our PT also works with dd on correcting her form, making sure she's turning out only from the hips and not using her knees, and not pronating her feet and knees.  She has great ankle flexibility, but part of it is because she pronates, so he showed her how not to do that. He was a pole vaulter, but didn't make it to the Olympics because he always seemed to be injured, so he has a passion for understanding the causes of injury in order to prevent it.

    • Like 2
  16. So glad to hear your Oireachtas was such a positive experience :) Ours was kind of rough, DD competed in solos and came in near the bottom of the heap, but we expected that as she doesn't yet have the level of experience most of the competitors at that level do. We figured this year was just a practice run. The disappointing bit was teams because her 8-hand group was really sharp and should have been competitive for a good placement, but one of the girls had a serious case of nerves and messed up badly in the dance. I was proud of the girls though, they all rallied around to support and encourage each other, especially the girl who messed up and was of course devastated.


    DD came home excited to work towards next year.


    The studio overall had some great results, several World qualifiers. I'd been curious to see how things would go as five of last year's Worlds participants weren't competing this fall, three were out with injuries, one of the guys gave up dance to play football (now there's an interesting transition!) not sure what happened with the other.


    I'm sorry it wasn't a great experience, but it sounds like your dd has a good attitude about it all and is excited to try again next year. My dd was kind of borderline for doing solos, but I think doing trad sets the first year is a much less stressful intro to O's, so I'm glad that's what she did. As it was, she was disappointed to get 6th because the top 5 got trophies instead of medals, so I think doing solos and not recalling would have been much harder for her. By next year, she will be more competitive in solos.


    I'm sorry the team comp didn't go well. It's a big burden for the ones who feel they messed up. Our U15 4-hand team has now gotten 4th place 2 years in a row - and both years, they went on the wrong side of the stage and had to move, so they felt like that kept them out of the top 3. In both cases, the kids in the back row knew that they were on the wrong side, but they had to follow the ones in front. For dd's 8-hand, one of the kids counted them off to bow before the bell rang, and at least two of them pointed before they realized it wasn't time yet - including my dd. So they were upset about that, knowing that it might have cost them a higher placement and feeling like the teacher was upset with them. They work so hard all year and try so hard not to mess up when they get there.


    We had a few kids that were just several placements away from World Qualified, so maybe next year. We have a small studio, but the owner has a vision of building a world-class school. What our teacher has done in 2 years is incredible, and it's very exciting to be a part of it. 


    ETA: I was looking at pictures and comments on facebook, and I realized that our over 15 8-hand team is world-qualified. Unfortunately, it might be a long shot for all 8 to be able to commit to go to worlds. 

    • Like 1
  17. We just got back last night from dd's first Oireachtas (Irish Dance regional comp). What an amazing experience! I already can't wait for next year!


    Dd placed 6th for her traditional set and her teams placed 4th and 9th. Three of our teams got 1st. All except one of our teams recalled. We've only been doing teams for 2 years, so it was really exciting that we did so well.


    Our adult dancers took 1st, 2nd, and 7th for their traditional sets. All of our kids who recalled for solos qualified for nationals and one for worlds. He qualified for worlds last year and didn't get to go because of injuries, so I'm so glad he qualified again. 


    Dd got her picture taken with the senior mens (over 20) current world champ. He danced at one of the awards ceremonies and he is so good! Meeting him was one of the highlights of dd's weekend.

    • Like 3
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