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About Happy2BaMom

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    Hive Mind Level 5 Worker: Forager Bee

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  1. If such a precedent was established, I wonder if homeschool students who experience(d) gross educational neglect - or who think they have - might also sue their parents? (I'm not trying to be snarky, just wondering how far out the ripples might flow.)
  2. I finished my teaching certification about 7 years ago. I had *a ton* of instruction in phonics, including one whole (required) class, plus I had to pass a reading instruction exam that included phonics & how to teach them, so I think a lot depends on where you get your education.
  3. Uuuuuggggggghhhhhh.....Amazon. I'd *really* be careful. I was interning in Seattle when Amazon first began (dating myself here). From the start, it was a brutal place to work. It's a great resume builder. Most people resign themselves to working there because of the skills they gain and the long-term pay incentives are a worthwhile trade-off. Shut-off-the-brain and just get-on-the-treadmill for a long-term reward type thing. I'm sure there are people who like, and perhaps even love, their jobs there - a gazillion people work at Amazon, there have to be *some*. But the corporate culture has always been harsh and demanding. If they are putting stipulations on how far away you can live, I'd bet a big pot of money that at-home call-ins will be a feature, not a bug, of that position. And your hubby will still (most likely) be expected to be in the office at 9 a.m. (at the latest) the next day for a full day of work. Maybe I'm wrong. But I'd encourage your hubby to not be dazzled by 'bright lights, big city' and to probe what the day-to-day expectations are. It is not a worker- or family- friendly employer.
  4. Relocation is hard, harder when you don't want to leave where you are at. You all sound quite content there...I think a huge move would be a much bigger deal than you realize. So I'd probably vote for listening to your gut. That being said, I lived in the Seattle area for nearly 15 years (I've been gone for a few years, but still have a lot of family there & visit often). The biggest downside is the cost of living and, due to that, the traffic (as people push further out for cheaper digs). It is not that less expensive than San Fran. Other than that, I *love* Seattle. You can be outside nearly every day of the year - the average high is January is something like 40 or 45 and freezing temps are rare. While it's gray a lot, the temps are moderate, and the rain is more drizzle than downpour (although you can get downpours). There are mountains *everywhere*. Puget Sound is beautiful, the San Juan Islands and Vancouver, BC are a few hours away and there is *so* much to see and do. And the greater metropolitan area is 4 million people. You can find your tribe. Yes, some places will be militantly liberal. And some (yes, even in western WA) will be militantly conservative. The idea that you can't live in an area of 4 million people because some people are militantly this or that is rather.....overly-sensitive. However, if the Big Tech is Microsoft or Amazon, well, as a tech friend of mine says, "Those are good places to be *from*". Meaning they are good resume builders but most people don't stay longer than they have to. Hours & working conditions at both places tend to be pretty harsh, although perhaps Microsoft is mellowing a bit these days. Best of luck.
  5. I'm willing to bet a lot of money that this is by design. Make it nearly impossible to comply....which allows for more people to be classified as "illegals"...department then looks "tough", makes bigger news splashes, etc. Not to mention that ICE agents are largely invisible to the public. Untouchable even. And therefore can't be held accountable. On a related anecdotal note, an English friend of my was recently here on a legal visa. When he flew in to the U.S., he ended up spending 4 hours being interviewed by customs agents. He's not sure why. He has no criminal record and no 'flags'. He's 42 years old and has never even smoked pot or gotten a parking ticket. It amazes me that Americans are so frickin' passive about all of this. Do they not see what is happening? A LOT OF FACELESS 'PUBLIC' AGENTS ARE BEING GIVEN UNLIMITED POWER - the power to detain, to question (for however long they want), to decide, to lock away. No one really knows when or why or how or who. It's chilling. It has *nothing* to do with keeping us safe and everything to do with expanding government control over our lives.
  6. Students may think that, but in my day, you didn't just get to get up and announce it to the whole class, using class time to do so. Really, no one else cares why any other student is there. I think the students need to get over their egos.
  7. I insist on one but it's because my dog often comes with me in the car (except on hot days). Even on pleasantly warm days, the sun on an enclosed car quickly becomes dangerous. But I fully open my moonroof anytime the temp is >50 and then I crack all windows and that creates the world's greatest draft. The hot air goes up & out, airflow is pulled through the windows, and it stays very pleasant. I still don't risk it on hot days, but anything below 80-85 (depending on cloud cover, humidity, etc) and the furbutt is riding shotgun with me. Just to point out that there are practical applications as well.
  8. Boy, the methodology they used for this map seems suspect to me. The survey firm created a profile and then projected that onto the country as a whole (IOW, the map isn’t based on actual surveys of the different parts of the country). They say they interviewed 2,000 people to create profiles, but I don’t think that # of interviews is a sufficient sample size to reflect the whole country. (And perhaps it is accurate....but it troubles me because it gives the impression that it’s based on solid data as opposed to a projection of what they assume to be true.). As for the topic at hand, dh and I own property in a beautiful but very extreme political area (referring to both the severity of the views and politicians elected), and we’ve decided to not settle there largely because of it. I am in a minority where we live now, but people are respectful and don’t delve into political topics in general. I have good friends on the “other” side. I respect and like them. This area isn’t on the retirement list for other reasons, but the people are good and I don’t concern myself with their politics. I just can’t do crazy/extreme long-term for retirement. Life is too short and I don’t want to spend my last years on earth feeling depressed.
  9. My hubby was career Navy (retired now). There are *really* strict regulations on the bases / boats / ships re: firearms - when they can be carried, by whom, how, how they are stored - and *really* strict penalties if those regulations aren't followed. It's the same in the Army (& I'm assuming for the other services). It just boggles my mind that professional soldiers and military leaders recognize the dangers of firearms & proactively ensure/enforce the safety of all, yet in everyday society, people assume every slack-jawed idiot should have automatic access to 24/7/365 unrestricted carry. (And, for the record, I don't think our school shooting problem is just a gun-control issue. I think our national obsession with violence and ego and the belief that the best way to gain respect is by establishing yourself, usually through force, as the strong one. But that's a whole other post.)
  10. She needs to be a high school teacher in another country. Send her to college in another country to help pave the way. Doesn't have to be Canada (though it's not a bad thought) - anywhere in the EU, parts of Asia, heck even many parts of Latin America have affordable college tuition, low cost of living (so she doesn't have to make much), more affordable/accessible health care &, best of all, no weekly school shootings. The U.S. doesn't have a way forward to fix this problem. And, no, it's not just guns (though I have long loathed the loss of the ban on assault weapons), it's also our every-man-for-himself culture & numerous other things that we seem to have no way of addressing in any significant way.
  11. On the other side of the anecdotal, my family history is very different & much more dire. I'm older Gen X & my SIL is deaf as a result from childhood measles, my mother almost died from pertussis as an infant, a great aunt died due to diptheria and a great uncle currently struggles with repetitive debilitating shingles. But rather than relying on anecdotal evidence, it's best to look at the CDC, which has some good articles about historical impact of these diseases. Here's one on measles: ~ 6000 deaths a year each year between 1912 & 1922 (this was when they first began tracking). Here's another one on the history of epidemics.
  12. I think it's safe to say that there wouldn't have been a tax cut, but other than that I don't know and, TBH, I don't really care. My statement wasn't so much meant to be partisan as it was/is an observation of historical fact. The U.S. has now cut tax revenue and increased spending, and as such, is projected to be running annual deficits of ONE TRILLION+ dollars every year going forward. Most people in this country do not seem bothered by this. I guess everyone is just assuming that we will escape the fate of every other civilization that has done the same thing? According to the Congressional Budget Office...."interest payments will rise from $325 billion last year to $928 billion by 2029, a nearly threefold increase. If tax cuts and spending increases are extended, interest will exceed $1 trillion and set a new record as a share of the economy....The federal government will spend more on interest than on Medicaid or children by 2020. By 2024, interest will match defense spending.... interest is on course to be the single largest government program within three decades ". I am concerned about future generations, and about the consequences they will experience as a result of our decisions. I am truly concerned about THEIR paychecks and pockets. Most people are obsessed only about their own. Even if they say they are concerned (about the future generations), ignoring or being OK with one trillion dollar deficits pretty much negates their words, IMHO. And this will be my last post on the subject, as I don't want to hijack the thread any further. ETA: I think politicians don't care because the American people don't care. There have even been studies done, asking if responders if they are concerned about the deficit: "Oh yes, yes, very concerned." Then the same population was asked if taxes should be raised or spending should be cut. The most frequent response was "Neither."
  13. We paid more, by a few thousand dollars. The loss of some deductions is what pushed it up. Fortunately that's not that big of deal for us. In the news today: the U.S. deficit is up 77% over the same period in 2018. The U.S. has managed to add $310 billion in debt so far this fiscal year. But I'm sure the U.S. will avoid the fate of every other empire that's massively overspent and underfunded itself. <eye roll>
  14. Generally speaking (& merely IMHO), many Americans do not like or trust many other Americans, especially if those other Americans are in positions of any authority. Any person who works for any level of governmental organization is assumed to have malicious intent until....well, let's just say they are assumed to have malicious intent. It's just part of our culture & with the breakdown of our institutions, it's only made things worse. I agree with being cautious, and in never volunteering information, but excessive amounts of energy seem to get expended on protecting oneself from any & all _______ (insert person of authority in blank) who are deemed a threat, or who have threatened anyone else in previous situations. I think this mindset contributes to more stress and a further breakdown in relationships. I don't know how we - as a culture - can reverse the level of instant mistrust that is so common right now. It has gotten markedly worse in the last 10-20 years.
  15. First of all, I feel your pain. I've had to fire two farriers, and I *SUCK* at it. The first one (I'm ashamed to say), I just called to cancel the appointment (mentioned that horse was seeing the vet for a pre-nav check-out, which was true....), and then I just never called him back to reschedule. The second farrier (who's actually a barefoot trimmer) is still doing one of our horses. I switched another one away from her, and just put it down to vet / the brief need for corrective shoes / had some special situations going on. Those reasons were partly true, but the real truth is is that she wasn't trimming the other correctly. I don't know how long I'll keep up the split schedule - this is relatively recent. I think you have a few options: 1) If you really are going to fire him, honestly, I think it would be less awkward for both of you if you e-mailed him (if that's an option...I think e-mail is 'nicer', as he will get to it when he's ready to go through e-mail), or even just texted him and said something like: " I am going broke trying to figure out the lameness issue. Due to the stress & urgency of this, I really need to try a different approach with Mr. Social's feet. As such, I will be following my vet's recommendation and am going to try the services of Mr. Farrier #2 for the next few trims. I will let you know if something changes. Please know I have really enjoyed working with you the last five years but, for the sanity of my bank account and my family, I just need to change things up. Please call if you have any questions." 2) If you choose the phone call option (and I could see why someone recommended that)....well, I'm not above doing the junior high thing and enlisting the help of a friend to come over at an appointed time to hang out with me while I made the phone call (told you I suck at this). Honestly, having someone supportive there to: 1) make sure you actually make the phone call (and not put it off), and 2) to walk you through a practice run, and 3) just give you courage, can really help. (pathetic, I know...but it works) It's really tough when it's a personal relationship.
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