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AMJ last won the day on April 3 2018

AMJ had the most liked content!


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    : SE Texas Time: two hairs past the freckle

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  1. I have osteoarthritis in both knees myself and we own a treadmill, a stationary bicycle, and one of those weight machines. We have had these machines for years longer than I have known about my osteoarthritis. I have found that for me cycling is not the best thing for my knees. Walking is better for my knees. What is key for walking is to have good shoes. When we bought our stationary bicycle all four of us went to a store where we could actually sit on and try out the various cycles they had. We selected one that fit all of us, including my youngest daughter who at the time was shorter than you. By doing so we made sure that each one of us actually could use the cycle, which we did for several months after purchasing it. None of us have kept up with using the exercise machines that we have other than the treadmill. The others sit and take up space and we use them once in a great while more out of guilt than any other reason. They cost enough that we don't simply want to give up on them and to get rid of them, so they continue to take up significant floor space in our house. For myself I have discovered that I do better when I have a class or can go out walking amongst scenery. Due to a vertigo like symptom I have had the last few years I have also found that walking over uneven terrain can be very helpful for me in that it gives me relief from that vertigo like symptom. I have found myself good hiking shoes that fit me well and give me good traction and stability for when I hike. But the big daily benefit I found was Hoka one one shoes. I heard about these from a friend I was visiting and went to a store to try some out. I found a pair that fit me well and I bought them right then, and during my major hike through the airport changing planes on the trip back my knees never gave me any grief. If you can please consider trying out a local gym to see if you can give their spin class and their cycles a try before you buy one for your home. Find out if the activity is actually going to work for you. Please also look into good shoes for your knees for regular daily wear and for any exercise options you may choose. Hoka one one is only one brand, and they are expensive, but good shoes like these have made a remarkable difference for my own knees just in going through my daily activities, which include elder Care. Please also forgive any typos. I am using voice to text dictation on my phone for this, and it tends to put in oddities here and there, and I don't always catch them all. I hope you find options that work for you!
  2. My DH (who double-majored in math and mechanical engineering in college) had trouble memorizing math facts as a child. He said the facts gradually got memorized over the years through use. Our eldest DD also had trouble memorizing math facts. Before we started homeschooling, when she was required to take a standardized state test with no calculator, we did get one accommodation: she was allowed 10 minutes before test time to sit in front of the teacher and construct her own times table. She was then allowed to use that times table for the test. This let her do the adding to get to her times facts just once each, which sped up taking the test. DD does have LDs, some not diagnosed until 5th grade, and some not diagnosed until age 17. I recommend you get your teen assessed, as the information of what's going on with him/her can be invaluable. Don't lose hope. And tell your teen that there are plenty of mathy people in the world who have had trouble memorizing math facts.
  3. Agitators will clean the fastest and most effectively, but can tear up baffles in comforters and sleeping bags and are rougher on delicates. An impeller allows bigger things to be washed in the drum and is gentler on delicates, but takes almost as long as a front-loader to run and I have found it twists my laundry a lot more than my old front loader or the agitator washers I used years ago. I wanted the capacity to wash a king comforter and the gentleness to wash the quilt my aunt made us for a wedding present. For years I had a Neptune front-loader and I really miss it. It worked beautifully and had an ergonomic opening (which current front-loaders lack), and we could switch the side the door was on to match the hookups in our house. Current front loaders require too much stooping for my knees (our laundry closet won't accommodate pedestals) and only open on one side (which doesn't work with our hookups). When our Neptune died I bought an impeller top loader to fit our hookup configuration. (HINT: measure your space AND the outsides of any candidate machines AND the clearances they will require before buying. Our new machines nearly didn't fit in our laundry closet at all -- they looked smaller in the store.) If you have friends with different types of machines perhaps ask if you can wash a load to try theirs out. I would have appreciated a chance to try machines before I bought.ALSO NOTE: consider NOT having matching machines. I have found I am decidedly less pleased with my new dryer that matches the washer. I wish we would have kept my old dryer as it worked so much better. And our new machines are made by the same company as our old ones. If the only gotcha to getting a good dryer is mismatched machines I'd rather have mismatched good machines than pretty mediocrities.
  4. Would your son happened to be interested in police or firefighters or ambulance or other service type professions? You could perhaps have some sort of a party at your house and invite the police and or the firefighters and or the paramedics etc, asking that any who are off duty at the time please consider coming to the party. I saw a news story recently about a boy who had a birthday party in a park and none of his classmates came, so the mother called up the police dispatch or somehow let the police officers know, and police officers showed up to the party. If your son might like some personal birthday wishes from such emergency personnel that is one possibility to look into.
  5. Are you expecting to have any more pregnancies, host a mobility impaired houseguest, or have a family member who might face surgery? If so, choose a house with at least one bedroom and a bath with a shower and tub on the ground floor. Two bedrooms, a laundry, and a bathroom that accommodates bathing small children and an easy-entrance shower all on a ground floor would be better. Here's why. When we planned to have a second child we moved to a bigger house. Our first house was single-story, so I didn't realize certain issues that can arise with stairs. I wanted a house with the master on the same level as the kids' bedrooms so neither groggy adults nor upset awakened kids would have to handle stairs in the middle of the night. The problem? The house we ended up with had all bedrooms and full baths upstairs, with the laundry in a closet upstairs, too (handy, since that's where the bulk of the laundry is generated, but I miss having a laundry room, the laundry closet is right outside the master and another bedroom -- noisy at times, and the machines are hard to get into that small space). After having a C-section I was on doctor's orders to not carry the baby on the stairs for two weeks. TWO WEEKS of not carrying the baby on the stairs. My DMIL took my eldest to and from daycare for me while I was on maternity leave and my DH had a long commute. I had to get up and shower before DH left for work (no matter how little sleep I had gotten) and DH would carry the baby downstairs for me. The baby and I then spent the day downstairs until DH got home, after which he could carry the baby upstairs again. We had to set up a spare bed for me and a second nursery (bassinet, second rocking chair, clean baby clothes, and full baby supplies) in our living room on the ground floor. The very open floorplan and glassy front door and entry didn't allow much privacy during the day, nor could I get it dark or even dim for napping (I don't sleep well when it is bright). Since the laundry was upstairs I also couldn't wash clothes except when DH was home again, right when I was trying to catch up on sleep. Proximity to noisy machines isn't conducive to good sleep. My kids are teens now. Over the years I have broken bones in my feet three times, had a kidney stone, torn a meniscus in one knee, and developed osteoarthritis in both knees. Stairs have been a problem each time. My DILs also hosted their parents during visits, moving out of their ground floor master to accommodate their parents, who couldn't handle stairs well. If I could send word back to my younger house-selecting self I would say this: Choose a house that has these on the ground floor: A bedroom that can be a master and a second room that can be a nursery for babies and young children so groggy parents and little kids don't have to manage stairs at night. A bathroom that has an easy-entrance shower so you don't have to step over a tub's side AND a bathtub, preferably low-sided for bathing small children. A laundry. The kitchen. A living room so the bedrooms can remain private. Be prepared to temporarily move someone out of a ground floor bedroom if you have a guest who can't climb the stairs. I hope this helps. Much as I would like to move to a more accommodating house we will remain in this house until my husband retires because he got a very good job just 10 minutes drive away from here. It would take a permanent disability to get us to leave this house before he retires. Once he does we plan to get a house that will allow us to age in place AND handle visits from grown kids and grandkids.
  6. We recently bought ourselves a new fridge, a counter depth Samsung 4 door. We are very happy with the fridge, and it comes with ice and water dispenser through one door. The top part is a refrigerator with French doors, and the bottom section has two compartments, each with its own door. The left hand lower compartment is straight freezer and contains some drawers and some shelves in the door. The right hand lower compartment is shaped the same as the freezer, but is a variable space. It can be set for hard freeze, which will put it at the same temperature you set the freezer at, soft freeze, or a deep chill, for storing meats and such above freezing temperatures. This particular counter depth Samsung 4 door refrigerator comes in 3 different models. The most expensive not only has the ice and water in the door but also contains a computer screen. The middle priced option instead of having a computer screen has one of those double doors, in which you can open just part of the door to get at some of the stuff stored in the door or you can open the whole door to actually get into everything in the door and the stuff in the fridge. That particular setup would have been handy when our kids were little. We chose the cheapest of the three, with just an ordinary door instead of one of the other two. Please note that no matter the model free-standing counter depth fridges these days are not truly counter depth. The one we selected does not have handles that stick out so it is one of the shallowest profile ones, but it's still sticks out past our counters a little bit more than the depth of the doors. If you want something that is truly flush with your cabinetry you will need to get a built-in model. Our particular fridge was seen at Home Depot and Lowe's when we were shopping, though we ended up buying it at Best Buy. We were shopping the Black Friday sales, and Best Buy gave us the best price. The fridge looks to be something stores believe will sell, so it should be easy to find, even if I can't give you the exact model right now. As I said, we are quite happy with this fridge. The freezer configuration looks carved up, but the spaces are big enough to fit certain frozen pizzas into, or an entire turkey. Good luck with your shopping! Don't be shy about asking the stores what sales events they will have coming up. I hope you find something that you enjoy.
  7. I really like this word. It sums things up for me quite nicely for this year and for the coming year, as far as what I need to be is concerned. There are two words that crossed my mind when I read the original post, things required of me this year that will continue to be required of me this coming year: Accept and Adapt. I won't go into details right now, but it has been a time of heavy changes and we face more in the coming months. I haven't read any of the other responses, but I will do so as I have time. Thank you, OP, for an interesting and timely thread.
  8. This past January I moved my Dad from two states away to a senior living place near me. Dad started this process in 2010, but this time he was actually ready to move, and was ready to give up most of his stuff. We (my 16 ya daughter and I) brought him down with only what would fit in the bed of my pick-up (plus some framed pictures and luggage we sent UPS). It was a nightmare. We abandoned a storage unit (garage-size) full of stuff. He had paid rent on that unit for 35 years. It had furniture, fancy Japanese porcelain dishes from the 1960s, and lots of "treasures" from my and my siblings' youth. The door was frozen shut and we decided we weren't going to try to get into it but would just let it all go. He had already relinquished his hanger at the local airport and given the contents to a young man who breathed aviation like my Dad did. Dad had a two-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment with an attached single-car garage. For over 25 years Dad had been dealing with the after effects of a traumatic brain injury, and over those years the stuff got away from him. He has always been proudly independent, but he just couldn't keep up. He took to keeping people from seeing his place, instead going out to see them. This included us when we would come to visit. The key this time was Dad feeling ready to move, though now I wish I had insisted on being let in years before. It cost us $5700.00 to hire a clean-out crew to come in after us, after my daughter and I spent weeks searching the place to retain or destroy sensitive papers and to pull what clothing and possessions Dad wanted to keep. every room, including the garage, was full of stuff. Dad also said he was ready to give up driving, which was a good thing. The odd little spells he had been having but kept failing to tell his doctor about (and he loved his doctor) proved to be transient ischemic attacks, short-term strokes. Dad's minivan was promptly sold to a junkyard because we couldn't find the title. It was in rough shape anyway, though it still ran well. It took two hours for my daughter and I to sort through and empty out all of the stuff Dad had in that van, and that was working "quick and dirty" because we were standing out in the cold in Colorado in January. Dad never intended nor expected his place to get to that state. When my parents divorced Dad packed up what he could and moved, focusing on rescuing what he thought us kids would want saved (and us kids claimed to want to keep). He put that stuff into a storage unit until us kids were ready to claim things, and until he had time to sort through the rest. Over the years my sister and I claimed several things, but our brother died, so more went back into that storage unit. Dad was an airline pilot, and he kept a decent household on his own, though he tended to accumulate books faster than he could read them. After the TBI Dad had a spell of recovery, then spent many years running a retirement business of delivering airplane parts across the country, picking up a lot of business at air conventions. Stuff slowly piled up at home as Dad had so much fun running around. Dad aged, and gradually slowed down. He had the time and inclination to attend to his stuff, but he tired easily and would rest and read. He bought more books, but would get tired or distracted before putting them away. He would rest, then wake and go do stuff, and the books would sit in their shopping bags, forgotten. Days or weeks later Dad would buy the same (and other) books all over again. As Dad slowly declined he went through many stages and several health issues. He remained fiercely independent, and was very unpleasant to my sister and me for some years. This made it hard to notice and realize Dad's decline, especially from 1200 miles away. I am describing all of this to give one example of HOW a person could accumulate so much stuff, including a person who for most of his life managed just fine. Adults have the right to determine their own lives unless a court can be convinced to rule otherwise. If they keep their kids and loved ones at a long arm's length away it can be very easy for those kids and loved ones to be unaware of the state of things, and the individual is left to his or her diminishing abilities to manage his or her own things, as he or she insists on doing. While the end result can surprise and appall us, working to understand HOW this result came to be can be enlightening. I can see the seeds of the same situation developing in my own house. I have a storage unit of my own, to hold many of the boxes of stuff that I have not yet found the time to deal with. Most of that stuff is papers and photos, important and crucial items mixed in with outdated stuff and junk that had not yet been culled out. Each individual box is a fearsome and daunting task, taking hours to get through. I work on a box now and then when I can, but Dad's medical issues have taken so much of my time, energy, and brain power. I have not gotten through many boxes since moving Dad here, and more mail and other stuff keeps coming into the house, especially since I am now Dad's Power of Attorney and managing all of his affairs. There are many other boxes, though, that contain "family treasures" I have been "entrusted with". And many other such treasures fill my house. I have tried to explain to my kids the importance of not letting things accumulate so much. My daughter who helped move my Dad has taken this more to heart. She decided to give her American Girl doll and accessories to a younger cousin, and Grandma (who originally gave DD the doll) suggested to DD that DD keep it for her own future child. My DD responded that she has learned from my dad's and my examples that holding onto stuff for years "just in case" or "for the future" can be a big trap. She has also willingly decluttered away other outgrown stuff. I have also told my kids that when/if it comes time to clear out their dad's and my stuff they should keep certain documents, but all else can go. They are NOT to feel like they have to hang onto something just because it belonged to someone else. They should not feel the family guilt and pressure to turn their own homes into an archive of other people's lives. It sounds harsh, but being the recipient of this family guilt for so long, the "blessed inheritor" of things no one else in the family wants to house but refuses to let go out of the family, I am determined to NOT visit this curse upon my own kids. It stops here Which means if I am going to prevent my kids from dealing with the type of situation my DD and I dealt with when moving my own dad I have a lot of work to do. I have 2-3 decades. It might be enough time.
  9. Applauses for you, too! DD14 started public high school 2 weeks ago today. DD17 has received her driver's permit and is continuing her driver's ed. She and I are working out what she will study this semester and year and how she will go about it. We had too many technical issues and delays to get her into dual credit classes this fall. Good news on Dad -- he's down to phlebotomies every other month.
  10. Wonderful, Krissi! Applause applause applause! Sorry to have been away so long, folks. I lost my combobulate for quite a while. Things are starting to get back into some semblance of a schedule, however, so I hope to be back on the thread more regularly once again. How has everyone been? Whatcha been up to?
  11. Try a Google or YouTube search for Bill Engvall's We Got The Stone performance. If you can find it watch the entire show, more than an hour long. Utterly hilarious, especially the his stuff about being on Dancing With the Stars.
  12. You have done enough for today. Listen to your muscles and give them some rest now.
  13. Who is Mark and why should we question him? Is he a suspect?
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