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About Alice

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  1. That’s funny. In our discussion several people mentioned friends that they had who had read it as teenagers and loved it. Our theory was that people who read it as teens maybe saw it as more romantic and overlooked the more troubling parts. Ha!
  2. I finished Lonesome Dove. It was not my cup of tea, although it’s not a bad book. Just so ultra masculine. It’s probably a fair depiction of the time and place but I really didn’t need to be immersed in that much violence for 850 pages. Almost everyone in my book group felt the same way, except for the 70+ year old woman who picked it. We decided it was partially generational, at least in that she had grown up watching cowboy shows on TV and the movies and just found that life fascinating. The rest of us weren’t entranced enough by the cowboys to want to put up with all the icky stuff. Not sure what is next for me. I’m reading the Iliad with my oldest for school and I need to read some other things with the kids. I have a big old stack beside my bed so trying to decide waht is next for my personal reading.
  3. No specific reading goals here, other than to read more. I’m currently reading Lonesome Dove for my book group. And starting The Iliad to read with oldest. I’m also reading The Fellowship of the Ring and The Girl Who Drank the Moon out-loud to my kids. And we’re listening to The Incorrigible Children and the Unmapped Sea in the car. I have many other things on my nightstand but I’m not letting myself look at them until I finish Lonesome Dove or the book club meets (whichever comes first).
  4. Alice

    S/O dog traing--dog people please chime in...

    I am not at all a dog expert, we have a minimally trained 5 year old dog (and it’s our first dog). She likes to jump on people too. One thing we taught her was to go to a specific place on command. For us it’s her mat/bed which happens to be near our front door. We taught her to do that when it was just us and family by using treats. Then we worked on having her learn to stay there until we say to get off. Once we got her to learn to stay, we worked on going to the mat when she was excited but it was just family (she gets barky and jumpy when the kids play loud music or dance around). I added the command Quiet/Calm and wouldn’t give her the command to come get the treat until she was lying still and calm. Now when someone comes over, we will usually tell her to go to her mat and then let her off to get a treat if she is calm. It’s also useful when kids are over and she gets overexcited.
  5. I can see that but the problem I have with it is that everyone can have a bad day. Posting it online I feel like is a way of labeling the person as being one way, it gives no grace. Maybe this mother had a particular horrible day. Maybe she was fired from her job. Maybe her kid was having one of those super annoying kid days and she was just at her wit’s end. Or maybe she’s just and entitled horrible person who makes a habit of going around yelling at people. But as soon as it gets posted online and has potential to get shared and go viral...she becomes only that horrible entitled person that everyone is talking about. And I think posting the video that has her child in it is particularly egregious. That’s a really good point. Although, I think I read a news article that seemed to suggest it was the same person. That’s where I made that assumption. But I could be wrong. It also sounded like from some of the articles online that it was a group of people who were training service dogs, not one person with a dog. So it could have been any of them taking the video, I suppose.
  6. I said not enough info. From the video, I’d say the mother is more to blame but the more of these kind of things that get posted online, the more I feel like we (as a society) are all too quick to rush to judgment. We’re seeing a tiny clip from an interaction and it’s hard to know exactly what happened. And even though I think the mother is likely more to blame, the fact that the service dog owner posted the video online makes me biased against her, it’s such a horrible trend. I can understand taking the video, if she felt threatened and wanted to intimidate the mother and make her go away or was worried about having evidence for her own protection. But posting it is really unnecessary.
  7. Alice

    Teens and Christmas

    We’re doing a lot of the things mentioned here...bluetooth speaker for 15 year old, bluetooth earbuds for 12 year old. Funny Tshirts for both. Books. Some card games. I’m getting them both a year subscription to Amazon Music to share. They like getting food that I don’t usually buy. I got 15 year old Pop-Tarts for his birthday and he loved that. And we got 12 year old Cinnamon Toast Crunch for his birthday and I think it was his best present. Someone got my oldest a Yeti mug for his birthday and he really loves that.
  8. There are some great graphic novels out there... Roller Girl by Victoria Jamieson El Deafo by Cece Bell the ones by Raina Telgemeier (Smile, Sisters, Drama) maybe not so though provoking but if your goal is to get her to read more, The Baby-Sitters Club books were recently remade into graphic novels. My daughter devoured those. Maybe less intimidating because it’s less words on a page would be some of the excellent novels in verse... Inside Out and Back Again by Thanhha Lai Crossover or others by Kwame Alexander The Last Fifth Grade of Emerson Elementary by Laura Shovan I also agree with the idea that reading for pleasure should be reading for pleasure, even if it’s “below” reading level.
  9. Alice

    Cheap activity trackers?

    I got my daughter this one: She loves it. It was cheap, but seems to be pretty durable and works well. She doesn’t wear it at night, so I’m not sure how it is at sleep tracking but I think it is supposed to do that. It doesn’t have a battery, which I like, so she she takes it off and plugs it in every night. I don’t think you have to do that, it’s just her routine. It’s not waterproof but is water resistant, she’s worn it accidentally in the shower and it was fine. It has an app you can use, we put the app on my phone and she likes to see her steps overtime. You don’t have to use the app, but it was fun for her that it was available.
  10. Alice

    Girl Scouts suing the Boy Scouts?

    This is why we didn’t do Girl Scouts. My boys do Boy Scouts and when dd was in 1st or 2nd grade she was interested in being a Girl Scout. So I contacted a couple of different local Girl Scout Troops and was basically told I had to start my own becuase they were all full. I’m happy to volunteer and have been very involved in Boy Scouts and all our kids activities. But starting my own troop was way more daunting than just being an adult leader or volunteer. I couldn’t take it on at that point. So I told dd we’d wait a year or so and see if we could find another troop and maybe I’d look into what it took to start one. She then lost interest. We now have friends in other troops who have been actively recruiting her as I think their numbers are low but she’s busy with other stuff and not interested anymore. That’s fine but I really felt like it was a weakness of the GS system. Within other organizations, I’ve seen the value of growing volunteers. You give the new person an easy job, then something more involved, then put them in charge when they know the system. But to just say you have to start from scratch is kind of overwhelming.
  11. I don’t know about the bluetooth aspect, but dh got me one of the things you can plug in that is supposed to allow you to access the phone over a radio station. I think the one you linked basically works the same way. The problem we found is that it has to be a radio station that has no other signal, and in the busy area we live in there are literally no stations that it will work with. When we’ve traveled and there are areas with very few radio stations it works great but it just won’t work around her.
  12. Alice

    Need help managing grandparents re kids Christmas Lists

    I could have written your post and many of your follow up posts. I have concluded that no, there is really no diplomatic way to manage this. I’ve tried hints, I’ve tried being honest, I’ve tried explaining that I feel like my feelings are being ignored, I’ve tried everything. It has never worked. I’m an only child and my parents give an enormous amount of stuff to all three kids. For them, I know it’s mostly that my Mom grew up poor and it’s her way of showing love. Dh’s parents are dead but he has one sister who gives a lot of inappropriate gifts. For example, she gave my 9 year old daughter a necklace of real rubies for her birthday. And then made a big thing about how if it broke we had to find every single one (it’s a sting of tiny little rub chips) because “it’s more valuable than anything else you own”. ? My parents will not give experiences, no matter how much I’ve suggested that. My Mom wants to “see them open “ things. What we have done that helps me a little bit although doesn’t really deal with the situation... *Stop giving many presents ourselves. We give experiences. Or I save one or two things that I know they really want that my Mom won’t think of and I give those. Special books or funny Tshirts. Things that are more personal but less glitzy and expensive. That cuts down on stuff and over the years has meant we’ve done really cool stuff for birthdays and as a family for Christmas. *I have no problems giving stuff away or getting rid of it. I have no problems with people thinking I’m unsentimental and mean. I just accept it. I don’t engage with that conversation. “Where is the so and so?” “Hmmm....Not sure where that is. Can you pass the bean dip?” My Mom has given my daughter about 10 American Girl dolls, despite me requesting multiple times for her to stop. She has also expressed that she doesn’t want me to give those away. So, as my daughter is outgrowing them, they have gone back to Grandma’s house where they will stay. My SIL also doesn’t want us to give away some stuff she gives us. Fine, I give it back and just don’t worry about what she thinks. I try to do it in a kind way but I’m still firm. “Thank you so much for this. We aren’t using it anymore. Would you prefer I donate it or do you want it back?" *I’ve tried really hard to realize that the underlying feeling behind all of it is that they love my kids. And me. Even though I think there are other issues there and it’s frustrating, I try and give them the benefit of the doubt and realize that it’s done in love. It doesn’t make me any happier about all the stuff but it makes me a little less cranky to realize that they aren’t doing it to drive me crazy. They just really don’t get why it drives me crazy any more than I get why they keep giving so much stuff. And as they have gotten older, it has gotten better. The kinds of things you buy for teens is just different than what you buy for littler kids. So that has helped as well.
  13. We volunteer regularly at a food bank. They have bags for the kids that have things for school lunches...shelf stable boxed milks, single serving applesauces, granola bars,etc. They also have a bin with random candy and small snacks like single bags of chips that have been donated by people. When we are packing the bags we can throw in something extra for fun. They try and keep the main food healthy, but it is nice to have treats as well.
  14. Alice

    chores, life skills

    This is us also. My goal for my kids was that they would know how to cook and clean and that they would see the household as one where everyone chips in when needed. Some days, they have more school work and I do all the cooking. Sometimes I’m in a hurry to get to work or need to go somewhere and they make lunch. Or dinner. We all work together. I’d guess they spend about an hour a day on average, including things like cleaning up after themselves after breakfast or feeding the dog. But it’s all spread out and just part of life.
  15. Alice

    I am so angry! DD ER Experience Last Night

    Two thoughts... My SIL is an ER doctor. She always thinks of the worst thing first. She doesn’t think “let’s rule out the most obvious” but “let’s rule out what will kill you or be really serious”. My kids laugh because she is super overprotective and germaphobic. I tell them it’s because she sees all the weird accidents and infections. She sees a sore throat and thinks “better make sure it isn’t epiglottitis”. I think “probably strep”. The other thing is that I’ve been in that setting, where as a doctor I feel like something needs to be ruled out or considered and I have to decide whether or not to mention it and freak out the patient or to be deliberately vague. It’s a hard decision, and even harder if you don’t know the patient/family. For example, a toddler with bruising might be leukemia. Do I mention that to the parents and then have them freak out and be in complete panic for 24 hours until the labs come back? Or do I not mention it but tell them to get bloodwork just to “be sure” and then take the risk that they won’t take me seriously and go get it done or that I will then blindside them if it ends up being something serious? It’s easier for me because I know the families and can try and tailor what I say to their personality. But I’ve definitely erred both ways...freaked out people who were more anxious than I realized and had people feel like I didn’t give them enough info when I was trying not to panic them. Also, ER doctors always tell people to follow up. Always. And probably the doc thought that mentioning a specific potentially serious diagnosis would make a busy college student more likely to follow up than just saying “make sure to see your doctor”. Sorry she had a bad experience. Sounds like the bedside manner could have been better, but I’m not sure that the doctor made a mistake.
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