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  1. My oldest says she would like kids. My middle says she doesn't want kids, but if she does, she only wants to adopt kids. My youngest talks about when he has kids, but doesn't specifically say he wants kids. I don't really have any strong feelings either way especially since they are on the younger side, but I really believe that it is a choice each person/couple needs to decide. I would enjoy having grandkids, but I'm not set that they have to be biological. I would be happy being an "adopted" grandparent.
  2. I was going to opt out but it was a pain with many steps so instead I will just adjust my DH's withholdings to make up the difference. That is way less painful for me, literally a logon to his employee dashboard and two quick clicks and it's done. ~Cassie
  3. My MIL had a foam fold up chair for kids, that would unfold to lay flat for a bed. Even as my kids got older they used it for a good long time because it was comfy for them to use when watching a movie, night sleeping, playing video games, etc. My MIL actually kept them unfolded, stacked, and under the guest bed when we weren't visiting.
  4. Mailed beginning of February. Refund deposited end of February. We have very uncomplicated taxes. It takes me less time to prepare using the PDF form than trying to use a program as well as our income is high enough that we do not qualify for the free e-file.
  5. I do for certain things, but overall no. Social situations such as a meal eaten all together or short-term visit, I teach them to be present with those around them and encourage them to engage in conversation and/or play. School work & chores need to be done before pleasure reading, and I do have a lights off for bed or my oldest would be up all night reading. Visits with family and/or friends that are for a whole day or longer, I do allow the kids to read, but not at meals and when an activity starts I encourage them to participate, sometimes it depends on the activity.
  6. A "game" that resulted in a lot of laughing and breaking the ice at the tables was "In Your Purse." Basically we had to fulfill a list to "create" a diaper/mommy bag from all the items we had in our purses or pockets. 1. Diaper - Someone had a pack of tissues 2. Drink for Mommy - Someone had cough medicine 3. Diaper Cream - Hand lotion Things along those lines. Another game that involved your purse was for the table or person to get a point for a list of items that could be found in a purse. There were generic things like pens, chapstick, tissues, license, etc. but there were also less common like a pair of underwear, deodorant, nail polish, sandwich, scissors, yarn, etc. Whoever (or the table) had the most points or had the most creative solutions got a prize or got to be first in line for food.
  7. My DH is getting a nice meal cooked by me, a chocolate dessert baked by the kids, and a trip to the ropes course close to our house for him to do something fun with all of us. The ropes course is expense so it's always a special treat when we do this.
  8. I take 50-60% to give to established ongoing charities for causes I want to routinely support and believe they are having a direct meaningful impact on improving people's lives. For example, I support an organization that provides short term housing for homeless individuals/families. Their goal and mission is to provide short term needs (housing, food, safe environment, hygeine, basic medical care) while helping them access services like Section 8 housing, other gov. resources, job training, job placements, couseling services, transportation, etc. I then take half of the remaing 50-40% and use it monthly for a 1-time larger donation to causes that is more "emergency" type. Maybe it would be someone going through medical treatments, a natural disaster, specific needs to outfit for a foster care placement, during a specific charity drive, etc. The remaining half, I would keep cash in pocket/purse for those times I could bless someone immediately with a few dollars. It could be a child selling something for a fundraiser, giving a few bucks to someone on the street, helping out a neighbor, etc. I actually do this currently with our "tithing" budget. I'm probably not quite as diligent as I could be, but I actively try to look for ways I can use my resources to better the lives of others.
  9. I wish we had a good neutral 3rd personal singular pronoun. Many times I don't actually use a pronoun. I will say "that dog", "that bird", "the neighbor's dog," etc. However, I will use it when then going on to say something additional. Like yesterday, I said, "What is that squirrel doing, it is chattering like crazy." We don't have pets so I've never thought of animals as family.
  10. Many prayers for your IL's, DH, and you. I know my SIL, after doing the bulk of caring for my MIL, had a hard time with feeling relief right after MIL passing. She felt like she shouldn't feel that way. I and DH really tried to make sure we loved on her and let her know that all her feelings were valid. She was carrying a large burden physically, mentally, and emotionally in caring for MIL through her illness and hospice care plus then being the executor of MIL's estate. It was that first big holiday that hit her hard and the real grieving started for her. We made sure to be with her even though it isn't a holiday we normally spend with extended family. When it comes to grieving and coming to peace with losing loved ones, there are no "shoulds" when it comes to one's emotions.
  11. The majority of our homeschool groups are alternative vax vs. anti-vax. Some do it on a different schedule while some do certain vaccinations but not others. We certainly have those that vax according to the recommended schedule while others don't vax at all. We have quite a few families in the homeschool co-op I attend the most that have vaccine injuries with their first and have chosen to not pursue any further vaccinating for that child or subsequent.
  12. We have a set of Simply Calphalon. DH is a left and I am a right. Looking at the knit set, the handles are simple and symmetrical (no grips, indentations for thumbs, etc.) Also the blades appear to be the same on both sides for the exception of the serrated utlity knife. Our knife sharpener allows for the knifes to be sharpened either edge. DH usually does the sharpening as he is better at getting both sides. Hopefully you find something that works well for you.
  13. Here are some of the ones I remember: who gave them and still use today: 1. Everyday set of dishes - MIL 2. Grandfather Clock - FIL 3. Queen size down comforter - Best friend's parents 4. Towel set - Aunt 5. Silverware - various friends 6. Wine Glasses - friend of the family 7. Coffee mugs - college friend 8. Knife set - a close friend who is a chef We registered for many practical things we would actually use. Also, I use things until they are useless. We had a small wedding and to be honest not many had a lot of money, so several went in on gifts together. The only duds I specifically remember is the amount of blank photo albums and empty picture frames. They were all wedding themed, and I didn't need 4 wedding photo albums nor did I need many, many framed pictures of myself and my DH (all the frames said "bride and groom" or "wedding day").
  14. Our stores will allow you to use them, but you have to bag yourself due to Covid. To be honest I prefer it this way, as I don't care for how things are bagged. Please DO NOT put raw meat with my vegetables! Please don't put canned goods with my squishables. I put my items on the conveyor belt in an order in which I feel like they should be bagged or grouped together, but our stores' baggers seem to want to fill the bags at a certain fullness and weight. Therefore, things get grouped together in what best "fits" vs. what things should be bagged together.
  15. I would like to, at least once a month, but it isn't a desire/priority for my DH. He also struggles with doing things without the kids, only our oldest is an early teen and the other two mid-elementary. I don't want to wait to connect/spend time with my DH once the kids are grown and out of the house. We both have our own hobbies, and there are things we do enjoy doing together, but the kids enjoy those things too. I find when the kids are along, DH and I are split trying to give the kids attention so while we are together, we rarely get to actually talk or be by one another which is why I push to have "date night." I would like a date night because I want quality time to actually be able to focus on DH and our relationship. Sometimes it is more conversational and other times it's more fun/adventuring, but we have always enjoyed ourselves and are glad we did it. Here are a few ideas: Hike, bike ride, or walk - sometimes we seek out a new place, other times resort to the tried and true Get food from the grocery store prepared section and have a picnic Let the kids watch a movie on our 2nd TV while we watch on the big one. For this we will sit together rather than be doing our own hobby. Taken a class. Go to open houses. Just to see what others do with their homes and give us ideas for ours Go to a play, concert, etc. We usually did smaller productions like a local theater troupe or the community college student productions. Kayaking Fly a kite Game store - in our area there is a store that sells and hosts various board & card games. They have so many you can try out and a big room to play it in. Bowling Minature golf Take a class - like cooking, a foreign language Attend a cultural presentation/lecture/exhibit at our community college Museums - Art, science, history
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