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Alice last won the day on February 6 2021

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  1. We live in Northern Virginia, outside DC. The area as a whole gets dumped on a lot by people elsewhere and even by locals. There are a lot of things not to like (traffic, cost of living) but a lot of things to really like. As we have started to talk about where we might one day want to retire, we keep coming back to we like it here. -Four seasons -Lots of opportunities for culture (free museums, theater, any kind of performance of anything) -Ethnic food (one of our nieces lives in Wisconsin in a gorgeous resort kind of town and she really really misses the food here). This would be the hardest for dh to move away from. He would really miss not having an Asian grocery store to go to regularly. -Close enough to lots of other places...beach and mountains are two hours away, NYC is close. -Great community supports (libraries, community college system, parks/rec centers, trails)
  2. You could definitely live in DC without a car. We also know people who lived in the closer-in suburbs like Arlington with no car, they just lived along a Metro. You can also use Zipcar which is a car sharing service. People I know use that if they mostly live without a car but need one for some reason. (Example, picking up furniture at Ikea or going on a day trip.)
  3. Podcast: The Popcast when I just want to laugh. Pantsuit Politics is a close second when I want something more substantive. Book: Demon Copperhead. Purchase: On shoes. They have saved my feet. Life Hack: Getting two separate duvets and a king sized bed. It's like sleeping separately, but in the same room. I'd be ok in separate rooms, dh isn't. This is a great compromise and has revolutionized my sleep. Biggest Regret: Nothing major. Life Easier: Let other people do more and stopped micromanaging how they do it. High Point: Lots of performances: King Lear at Shakespeare Theater, Giselle by ABT at Wolftrap, Indigo Girls concert. But also just having my oldest home from college over the summer and all the little everyday stuff we did as a family when he was here.
  4. I checked the first one but I think there is a difference between "tell everything that is in your head" and "bare your soul" and even "confess every sin". I think I can tell dh everything and he would forgive me. But I don't tell him everything that is in my head and I don't think he would want me to. Sometimes he annoys me or I'm bugged by him, I don't tell him that. And I wouldn't want him to tell me everything I do that annoys him. It's not that I couldn't tell him and he wouldn't love me...it's just that I don't think a relationship has to share every single detail to be healthy. Maybe there is a difference between hiding things because you are afraid of what the other person will think and just not sharing because you don't want to. When we were getting married the common advice was to "not let the sun go down on your anger." My pastor's wife at the time gave me great advice. She was a very outspoken and strong woman but she said her advice was "not everything in your head needs to be said aloud". She added "Sometimes, just go to bed and let the light of a new day shine on whatever it is." Those were great pieces of advice.
  5. As a pediatrician, we see people up until 21. We'll see some young adults a bit after that depending on circumstances but we run into issues with insurance after 23 (they often won't cover them seeing a pediatrician) and I think they are better served seeing an adult doctor. If they haven't switched before we start talking to them around age 20 about transitioning to an adult doctor. I also have a lot of parents who ask in the teen years if they should switch and I always answer that I think it depends on the teen and what they are comfortable with. Some prefer to switch to a family doctor as they hate coming to the "baby doctor" but some feel like that they would rather see someone they know than someone new. I personally think they should do whatever the teen prefers. Specialists are a real problem for the kids who are 17-18. Most pediatric specialists won't see new patients who are 18 and older, and some won't make appointments if they even are about to turn 18. I don't know if it's an issue for them with insurance or it's just their policy. Most adult specialists won't see people under the age of 18. So it' snot an uncommon issue for me to have a patient who I need to refer who is 17 and 9 months. The adult doc doesn't want to see them yet and sometimes the pediatric person doesn't either, or they can't get an appointment with them before they are 18. I will say usually if I can call and talk to the doctor themselves and explain the situation they will make exceptions, it's just the front office usually has a policy they are told and they will stick by the age when the parents call. The exception is for people who have seen the specialists for years for a chronic condition or who have a disease that isn't seen as often in adults, sometimes due to typical age of survival. For example, a lot of kids who had complex cardiac defects continue to see the pediatric cardiologist well past 21. Kids with cystic fibrosis used to only see pediatric pulmonologists because there weren't many people who survived into adulthood so the adult pulmonologists weren't as used to seeing them, but that has changed. I have a patient with muscular dystrophy who will probably stay at the same muscular dystrophy clinic that cares for all ages. Same is true for complex genetic disorders.
  6. -Yes you can go in some museums with backpacks. You have to go through security. A few museums will make you check a bag if it's big (usually the art museums) or carry it on your front. If they make you check it, it's free. -Very little requires advanced/timed tickets. The Museum of African American History does. Holocaust museum does. Some specific exhibits will, but I don't know of any right now that do (like when the Vermeer exhibit was at National Gallery you had to have a timed ticket for that but could go to the rest of the museum without it). -You could easily go to all free museums. The Spy Museum has a fee (and is worth it IMO). And then some of the art museums further afield (Philips Gallery) do. But the Smithsonian museums are all free. -Food is a little harder to find on the mall. It's somewhat overpriced. The museum cafeterias are kind of what you expect. The American Indian Museum and the African American Museum both have excellent food. You can find the menus online if you want to look. There are a lot of food trucks that park along the mall. if you venture away from the mall, yes it's very easy to find whatever kind of food you want. Vegan, gluten free, etc. You don't have to go far. It wouldn't be hard to take food outdoors, but March can be kind of iffy weather here and it might be chilly. We used to picnic on the mall all the time when my kids were younger.
  7. Not mentioned... -Yogurts- they have a specific lemon yogurt that I love. But they often don't have it in stock or it might be discontinued or seasonal. That is one of the frustrating (and also sort of fun) things...the things you love will come and go. -Chimichurra -They have a lot of great vegan offerings. The ice cream is a favorite of my son's- specifically the vanilla soy is apparently the best anywhere. They also have a green tea mochi ice cream and a black boba ice cream that my kid's like. -Peanut butter (or almond butter) filled pretzels. -Pizza dough- it's in the refrigerated section and fairly inexpensive. It used to be 79 cents but I haven't gotten it in awhile. Made for a great cheap pizza night. -The milk here is the cheapest anywhere, I have no idea why except that maybe it's priced that way as a loss leader. -My family all likes their mints- the green tea ones and chai ones. I do not. 🙂
  8. I didn't worry about it with my oldest, our state doesn't require us to fulfill any specific classes and I didn't feel like I needed to include it. When my second son went to public school (starting in 10th grade) I had to say we'd done Health so that he could get a credit for PE/Health for 9th grade, otherwise he'd have had to do two years of PE. I just wrote a few sentences saying he had "Explored nutrition as relates to a vegan diet. Discussed drugs and alcohol and sexual health." And he had a CPR certification which I mentioned. They were fine with that with no other documentation.
  9. Trazadone isn't a SSRI, although it is very similar (it's a SARI) and works similarly. It actually isn't FDA approved for insomnia, but it is very commonly used. It was approved as a treatment for depression but the sedative side effects are considerable so it became something was used for insomnia. This is actually really common in medicine, there are a lot of meds that aren't technically FDA approved for the thing they end up being used for. Or that start as one thing and then people realize the side effect is actually more useful than the original usage. One of the more famous examples is Rogaine, which is a blood pressure medication. It just had the side effect of causing hair growth and then people realized there was a huge market for that use.
  10. -I recently went to the African American Museum and it is overwhelming. It would be fairly easy to just go to the upper floors which are more culture focused. We were there for a private event so went to everything but I felt like if I was going to go back I would have done it in smaller sections. It's just a lot of information and a lot to take in. The food there is VERY good. -I am not a huge fan of the American Indian museum as a museum but the food is excellent and the building is beautiful. It's near the Capitol so would be a good place to eat and just to walk in and look at the building. Another quick building down there is the Botanic Gardens, which are right by the Capitol and easy to walk through fairly quickly. -Renwick Gallery is a somewhat lesser known Smithsonian museum, it is off the mall but close (near the White House). It's Art, but focused on craft. It's very cool and one of our favorites. I just saw that it is temporarily closed for some kind of pipe replacement, so check before you come. -If you want a newer area that has a lot of fun places- try the Wharf. It's not as iconic as Georgetown but more modern. Lots of shops, restaurants. They have an outdoor skating rink if you are here in the winter. They also have giant swings on the piers and it's just a fun atmosphere. My daughter loves that kind of thing. There is a theater there called The Anthem that has a lot of concerts. -Ice skating at the rink by the National Gallery is always fun. You can also get hot chocolate at the cafe there. -There are tons of options for concerts/tickets/things. One fun and free option is the Millenium Stage at the Kennedy Center. Everything is free, some are available online first (still free just have to be reserved). https://www.kennedy-center.org/whats-on/millennium-stage/ They have performances every Wed-Sun. The Kennedy Center itself is pretty impressive as a building and there are great views from the balcony/deck outdoors. And there is a new area called The Reach that has a cafe and connects to the bike path by the river. The Reach has some artwork and sometimes also hosts free events.
  11. I don't know if this is the reason but I read a really long article last year in the New Yorker about returns and the whole industry around returning stuff and the basic summary was that returns don't really work the way we think they do. Very little (basically almost nothing) gets returned to the store or site that we buy from. It almost all goes somewhere else to either get destroyed, dumped or to get resold on some other site. This is true even for places like Amazon. One of the startling things in the story to me was that Amazon apparently says that it doesn't dump things in landfills but it's because they burn a lot of the returns. So I'm guessing that returns all go to different places because they have different endpoints...it's not like they are actually going back to an Amazon warehouse. The different companies that are taking the products back are probably contracted to then send them on somewhere...but it's not the same places they get sent. That's somewhat of a guess so I could be really wrong. And I agree with you that it is annoying from a customer side of it.
  12. To be honest, I can't remember what I did for my oldest and can't find his transcript- I think it was on an old computer that died. I remember being really stressed about it though and asking here and finding about half the people said they did 1/2 credit for each and half the people said 1 credit each. FWIW, the final transcript we got from PA homeschoolers gave him a full credit for each. It also gave a full credit for MacroEconomics and a full credit for Microeconomics. He took both classes (Physics E/M and Mechanics) in one year and took both AP tests and the same with the Economics (one year, 2 tests). In the end, I figured colleges were more going to look at the classes as listed and the fact that he was planning on taking the AP tests than how many actual credits it was. I also figured being AP classes, that colleges understood what the classes entailed and didn't really care about the credits as assigned. My son had plenty of science credits so I wasn't particularly worried about it (he had 5 if I listed them separately..Bio, Chem, AP, Chem and both Physics). Sorry, that's not particularly helpful except to say it's a common question and I think a lot of people do something different and it probably works out. Also, in the end he got 8 credits from the college he went to for Physics, so equivalent of two semesters.
  13. We bought a condo when we got married. Dh was 34, I was 28. He had previously lived with his parents in an over the garage apartment so had been able to save a fair amount. We bought our first house three years later, after our oldest was born. So Dh was 37, I was 31. It was a weird set of circumstances, we weren't really planning on buying. A coworker of his was killed in a car accident. The sister sold the house to us at the low end of market rate. Neither of us used realtors and she passed on all the savings to us. In exchange, she didn't have to do any updating to the house to sell it and we also cleaned out a good deal of it for her (she took everything sentimental, we did the rest of the cleanup).
  14. You are definitely not a failure. Homeschooling is hard sometimes. I have three kids, my oldest homeschooled all the way through, my current 11th grader decided to go to public school last year as a 10th grader, my daughter is a 9th grader at public school- having homeschooled up until that point. Homeschooling is hard. Public school is hard. Parenting teens is hard. I have felt like a failure as a parent in both settings and most of the people I know who care about their kids feel frustrated and like they have failed at something at some point, even if they haven't. For the 11th grader....my oldest is a STEM oriented kid who hates hates hates to write. And also hates literary analysis. He loved reading but hated traditional literature kinds of classes. I thought about it as more of a goal. I wanted him to be able to write well enough to succeed in college. But I didn't really care about him turning out a certain amount of work in high school to mimic a high school English credit. (And as an aside, now with kids in public school, there are some things they do at a higher standard than ours and some things they do at a much lower standard than ours...in honors English in a pretty high performing school my kids have read THREE books in an entire year. I wish I'd known that when I was homeschooling my oldest and worrying about whether I was doing "enough".) So for my oldest, he could write but hated it. It helped to just assign him less writing so that he knew it wasn't busy work and also to have him write for things he liked rather than lit analysis or something that he hated. In college now at a small liberal arts college, he is thriving. He is a Math/Comp Sci major but took a class first semester with a History professor who he loved. It was a freshman seminar type of class but he loved the guy and rediscovered a love of history. He has now taken a ton of History classes and had to write a lot for those and done well. So I'd ask yourself if more if your son has writing skills? And if not, what can you do to work on those skills? What is about writing that is the issue for him? Is it coming up with creative topics? Is it just doing something he doesn't like? You could scaffold writing quite a bit instead of assigning essays. The classes that helped my son the most were the ones at Lukeion, which was also where he took Latin. He had to write a fair amount for Latin and he hated the writing but liked the subject so it was ok. (Similarly he didn't mind as much writing for AP Physics or Chemistry when it was lab reports, it's a different kind of writing.) Lukeion also has some writing classes and those were good for him and then he did the Shakespeare classes there as his English classes senior year and the writing he did in those was all I required. For the 9th grader, I will echo the previous poster. You may not know what they accept or require until you meet with them. I had been told by all the homeschoolers in our area that the public schools would not accept homeschool credits and the website of the school system kind of also made it seem that way. But they accepted all our credits, even for completely mom-designed and graded classes. They also placed him appropriately in all the classes. So it might surprise you. I'll also add that it was absolutely the right decision for us and our son to have him got to public school. There are a lot of things he doesn't like about it, but overall it's been good. And it helped me be able to just become an advocate and helper to him which has been a more positive relationship than before.
  15. Like what kind of advice? Whether or not to get a credit card? Or how to get one?
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