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Tanaqui last won the day on June 9 2017

Tanaqui had the most liked content!

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About Tanaqui

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  1. Go up to your nearest child, put your hands on their shoulders, and say firmly "I just want you to know that you're a special person. Never let anybody say that you're not wonderful. You are fantastic." Then give them a hug and walk off. When they ask if something's up, just say "No, I only wanted to make sure you understand how much I love you, because you are very important to me. You matter a lot." Man, the kids had an absolutely priceless reaction, and everything I said was 100% true. That was well worth the price of admission. Even funnier than slamming the door, yelling "KIDS! YOU COME DOWN HERE RIGHT NOW! THIS INSTANT!!!" and then handing them ice cream when they show up. (Okay, maybe I am mean.)
  2. I bet if we went and asked your kids now, they'd say that they're looking forward to the holidays and everybody is so happy, it's so much fun to see everybody and get gifts and eat a big meal. Because they're kids. They're not the ones cleaning the house, buying these groceries, planning this meal (possibly with lots of emails back and forth about who brings what and whether or not alcohol is okay and what time to have it and at whose house), cooking the food, managing the relatives who both insist on coming but hate each other's guts, budgeting for the gifts, getting judged by Grandma, and doing all this on top of a full day's work. Their job is just to sit back, relax, and make handprint turkeys. Everything was great when I was a kid! My biggest worry on Thanksgiving was how many slices of pie I was allowed and whether or not I could politely decline my dad's famous stuffing. And you can bet my parents worked hard to make sure that we didn't have any adult worries creeping in.
  3. Tanaqui

    High vocabulary Picture books

    Great 🙂 Mo Willems is totally awesome, hands down - but the suggested books are Early Readers, really, and so not what you're looking for. They're the best early readers in the industry, but the vocabulary and grammar is perforce very simple. On another approach, have you considered wordless picture books? I feel these are really underutilized for pre-readers and young reluctant readers. I know it seems counterintuitive given your request, but you could take turns talking about the story that's going on and, on your turn, you could use whatever hifalutin' vocabulary you like. And they might well improve his ability to follow a story and tell it back. Poetry is also a really, really great idea.
  4. Tanaqui

    High vocabulary Picture books

    Ohhhhhhhhh. That's entirely not what I thought, and I really, really apologize! I read that like "We want him to be reading chapter books already", which is an all-too-common attitude that I am convinced is counterproductive.
  5. Tanaqui

    High vocabulary Picture books

    He's five. This is not something you need to "work on" just yet. He SHOULD be reading picture books - and since most picture books are written as read-alouds, most of them have a good vocabulary level. (And it's okay to read books that don't have a "high vocabulary" if those are what interest him.) For specific recommendations... gosh, it's been a while! - try Jerdine Nolan, Audrey Wood (not all of hers, but many), Robert Munsch, Don Brown.
  6. Tanaqui

    WWYD? Congratulations or silence?

    You give them their best wishes. It's not fake, because I'm sure you do want the best for this person. And then you remind yourself that other people's life choices aren't your business. (I have trouble with that last one too. I can be sooooo judgmental. But it's not good for me.)
  7. I prefer King of New York to King of Tokyo, and Ticket to Ride Europe to the original Ticket to Ride. How about Carcassonne: South Seas (a little easier than original Carcassonne - if you get the original, play a few rounds without farms first!), Sushi Go Party, Go Nuts for Donuts (which my kids insist on calling "Go Doughnuts Go!"), or Battlesheep or Tsuro or Hanabi? You can find lots more games over at BoardGameGeek, and they also have forums.
  8. Tanaqui

    That stray, outside cat...

    Raccoons are a concern with cat shelters - my local (non-crazy) cat lady recommends having two exits so that if a raccoon comes in the cat can get out. Do you have a heated water bowl? That would be useful.
  9. Tanaqui

    If you allow sleepovers...

    Have you considered having them sleep in different rooms?
  10. To follow up on this, you can do the same thing with movies, tv shows, plays - all that good stuff. It doesn't have to be literature. That undoubtedly seems super Captain Obvious-y to most of you, but I'm saying it just in case 🙂
  11. I didn't realize you weren't getting this from family. Still, what I said is true - you need to take care of yourself first. If she legitimately needs all that help, then you need to speak to her now about getting home help or moving into an assisted living situation. Either she can handle this stuff and set it up or it's time to look more seriously at nursing homes.
  12. Tanaqui

    How to discourage toddler screeching?

    How annoying and frustrating for you! No advice, but lots of sympathy.
  13. If you don't take care of yourself, you can't take care of anybody else. Your family doesn't just fob off elder care on you because you homeschool. That's a convenient fiction everybody has bought into to justify their actions. They do it because they don't want to handle this and they know that you'll step up no matter how overburdened you are. So first you need to sit down and realistically assess how much help your mother needs and how much you can provide. If the help she needs outstrips what you can provide while still handling all your other necessary tasks and taking care of yourself, then you need to speak to the rest of the family and offer them an ultimatum. Either they agree to take some of these tasks off your plate (and you need to be very specific about what help you expect and how often) or they chip in to pay for a home nurse and a housekeeper for however-many days/hours a week. Or both. And then you start saying no. Nobody will take you seriously if you don't start saying no. "No, Mom, I can't take you to 15 doctor's appointments all over town next week, I have too many other things to do." "No, sis, I can't do Mom's grocery shopping for her, I have to educate my children." "No, Uncle Steve, I can't scrub Mom's house top to bottom, I'm gonna be doing my nails. You'll have to find somebody else." This won't be fun, and it won't be easy. You'll feel bad and everybody will try to make you feel worse. But the sooner you start refusing to do more than you can handle, the sooner everybody else will be forced to step up and the easier it will be. One practical note: As much as possible, chores and errands should be clumped together. If most doctor's appointments are in the same building, for example, it's better to spend half an hour trying to get four of them scheduled on the same day than to run around on four different days. If her pills are consistent, it's better to get everybody together as an assembly line and fill up a whole month's worth of pill planners at once than it is to do it week by week (or, god, day by day). As for constant calls, the best thing is to set a daily phone time. You will call her at that time. You will accept no non-urgent calls outside of that time. If she calls to vent, listen for five minutes (set a timer!) and then say "I'm sorry to hear that, Mom. I'll talk to you more about it tomorrow" and hang up. If she calls to chatter for hours listen for a minute and then say "Listen, I'm really busy now. I'd love to talk, but I just don't have time. Why don't you call Aunt Sue, and you and I can talk tomorrow?" and then hang up.
  14. Tanaqui

    Decimal place value

    Certainly, but he's just learning about percentages and how they relate to decimals now. It's not that strange to have him write out that (say) 80% = 80/100 = .80, and presumably the idea is to encourage kids to understand what they're doing rather than thinking they're performing a magic trick. Though I probably should take the time to explain about moving decimal points, come to think.
  15. Exactly what are the odds, at the graduate level, that this is the first and only time they've cheated? I'm okay with ending their academic career. They're the ones who decided to cheat.
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