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Harpymom

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Everything posted by Harpymom

  1. Thanks! I actually never wear Birks, and I also go to the Blue Hill Fair every year. We read the Off to the Fair chapter as we drive there.
  2. Are you looking for an informative and delicious family vacation? You might consider volunteering or just camping out at the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association's Common Ground Fair in Unity, Maine. https://mofga.org/The-Fair For all Maine-based hive folks - see you at the Fair! I'll be the one getting the double helping of tempura root veggies.
  3. This might sound sort of simplistic and only pertains to younger kids but I read the original Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle books to my kid when they were little, and I really believe they helped with behavior like this. I'm remembering one story about the boy who loves animals but forgets to do all the chores when Mrs. Piggle-Wiggle leaves him alone at her farm. To this day as teens and olders, they tease each other about being like a particular character if one of them is "having a moment." Not petty. When Mama ain't happy....
  4. Congratulations on your "official" homeschool! I'm guessing the new hybrid school friendships will blossom gradually as the kids get to know each other. The way it worked for us was by following their interests into activities like the theater workshop, then being ready to drive or otherwise find ways to be able to have play dates or hang out time with new friends. You could also put up a flyer at your church or a local food coop or farmer's market to either start a more inclusive homeschool group or a parent-child group devoted to something like trash clean-up at a park. You could meet up at the park on a day you have off from work, do the volunteer activity then just socialize. You could host a fall get-together for a few of them, maybe with a mom or two so you also get some new friends options. It sounds like your child is ready for exploring her interests in real life as opposed to online, so my advice is take the opening and run with it, and she'll know she has options when she's a teen and the peer pressure to be constantly online will be more intense. I'm not familiar with online groups for kids, though I'm sure others here have ideas.
  5. Freeze pesto, finish apple butter, get all the spuds out of the ground. These are really just ways to pretend dd23 and I aren't getting on a plane and moving her to Switzerland on Tuesday. Finish lists for dd14 and dh for next week.
  6. If the kids are also Whole 30, obviously disregard my suggestions above. Maybe an alternative simple array always in the fridge: large numbers of roasted chicken thighs plus lots of roasted sliced sweet potatoes in olive oil and salt; jars and jars of peanut butter and roasted sweet potatoes, apples, carrots, and celery, and coconut-almond granola with coconut and almond milk.
  7. Cooking for teens, especially boys, is the proverbial threading the beads onto the string with no knot at the end. Endless. I loved the "Zits" cartoon that said something like "Cook your teen a snack and he'll eat for a day. Teach your teen to cook his own snack and your kitchen will be a wreck forever." Two words to save money and sanity: complex carbohydrates. My boys snacked on enormous bowls of brown rice, sri racha and peanut butter, extreme amounts of corn tortillas, canned refried beans, and cheese, and yogurt/muesli by the case. If you can have something like these for them to make for themselves all the time, they can eat before the activities and you can get some respite to plan and cook the real meals like others have suggested above. Agree with always having foolish amounts of eggs on hand, it helps to have your own chickens! Your rage is real, but they will grow up. Go with bulk, easy, and healthy. They will never look back and say gee we wish our meals had been more exciting when we were teens, I guarantee.
  8. I'm sorry for your pain at this, it's not easy. I was the first (lonely) homeschool mom in my area, and now I'm the last - all of dd14's friends are heading to high school this year. My oldest is 30 and I've remained good friends with the mom of his best friend who also homeschooled through high school. Likewise, my older daughter had only one friend who went all the way through and her mom and I are also good friends. I do find myself reading these boards more and more, imagining myself friends with interesting lovely moms. All the homeschooled friends of my younger two went or are going this year to public high school and I have no mom friends among their parents. It feels so sad. I felt most at home with the moms of the older ones, and not just in age. The younger moms (mostly of kids now heading to high school) have been weirdly competitive about more things during the homeschool years - schooling, sports, activities - than we old ladies were back in the day. Is this because college is harder to get into? Is the culture more competitive as a result of the internet and the need for instagram likes? I agree with MissLemon and klmama about how new school moms seem very rah rah, whether justifying their decision or just more of that same competitiveness. Selkie, I'm so sorry - I will never complain again about having only a couple of homeschool mom friends!
  9. Really rare. This has been a hard reality for my two middles. It was very hard for either of them to form close friendships in the first two years, since everyone else was bonding at "parties" on the weekends. My dd who graduated this year said that the music conservatory students drank a bit less due to time spent practicing. It seemed to her that everyone, college and conservatory, settled down and drank less in junior year, and many new friendships blossomed that year for her because of it. I'm hoping this is true, as ds is entering junior year as a secular teetotaler and he has been really lonely because of it. They were/are shocked at how much students drink when they or their parents are spending so much money to send them to college - what's the point of being there? Mine were lucky to be at the same college and had each other to hang out with on weekends.
  10. And Plan B: he applied and was accepted to a NOLS semester course - confidence-building, adventure, and a whole semester's worth of college credit. His professional goal is to do adventure education, so he'll be learning hands-on from the best. I am thrilled but will be holding my breath until he leaves the base for the course.
  11. My guess is that people want a sense of control when they specify where their ashes will end up, which is a reasonable way to try to grapple with the ultimate loss of control.
  12. My very proper Quaker grandmother requested her ashes to be scattered in the Brandywine River in Pennsylvania rather than placed under her stone at the Meeting nearby. We all thought it was too weird not to have any at her stone surrounded by her ancestors, so we snuck some under the headstone, sent some home with every descendant who wanted some and promised to work them into our gardens and then had a delightful scattering party in the river with tiny great-granddaughter, ancient sister (whose ashes now reside at the same Meeting and in the same river) and lots of daughters and grand-daughters wading in. Did we fulfill her request? Yes. Did we improvise with loving and meaningful intention? Also yes. Be at peace, you will honor your deceased person with your intention wherever you scatter their earthly remains. When you can use some humor on this: https://gimletmedia.com/shows/heavyweight/emhwel/6-james I also know that if anyone in our family had objected to the improvised plan, it wouldn't have happened (because consensus.) So I do think that if you object, your other decision-makers should not insist. Putting some at her gravestone gave us mourners a way to feel close to her when we visit.
  13. Started Monday with 9th for my fourth and final. It feels a bit too early as the crickets have just started chatting, but two of her online classes started and the third next Tuesday. She carefully set up her desk, purchased school supplies, figured out her online portals and is already happily spending time at her beautifully organized desk - she's such a different learner than the other three! Here's to 9th grade!
  14. Yup, too late - on to Plan B - hopefully he'll be heading to WW in the spring.
  15. Got the news yesterday that his dad never sent the FAFSA when he received the email prompt, because he thought the son had been ungrateful and won't do well in college. Sigh. Also, GMC has given all the records to Prescott College, so HDS will come eat pancakes this morning and I'll help him navigate the need-my-transcript-right-now phone call to Prescott - the Warren Wilson admins say it's probably too late at this point. I'm also going to help him brainstorm Plan B.
  16. Thanks, that's just what I did (asked if he wanted me to check the portal) and he said he was able to now. It's all about the moral support. No news yet!
  17. Hmmm, last night his sister - another Honorary - told me he hasn't checked his email all week because he's too nervous to see whether he's been accepted/rejected. My former career as a midwife gave me a lot of skill at helping women figure out how to work through fear, but I'm a little stumped here. Any advice from been-there, done-that parents? My usual approach would be to chat with him and ask what was the scariest thing he's done yet (probably functioning through his parents' divorce) then point out that this isn't as hard as that...but a 19 year old man just isn't facing the shadow of labor when he's too scared to check his email, so this may not work as a tactic. My biological kids would get an earful of Be Grateful, but that might be a little heavy-handed for this one. He's more like a scared deer. I'm thinking soothing conversation about other things, cups of tea and apple-cheddar pancakes, then a casual suggestion we check it together. It would be funny if it weren't so concerning!
  18. Our oldest just turned 30 - oh my! homeschooled through high school and then a BS at WPI. DD 23 has just graduated from music conservatory and is heading off on a Fulbright year, DS 20 is a rising junior in college, DD 14 a rising first year in high school - homeschooling through high school has just been our family's way. I agree with what the hive is saying above, and would add that we found keeping track of hours spent each week on what courses/activities was easy and also helpful to look back through at the end of each year to create that year's course descriptions. I gave each child a bookkeeping journal for each year, and they write the names of the classes they're doing down the side, and the days of the week across the top. Into each slot goes how much time spent and what was done: reading, writing, researching, creating, and also pages in textbooks read or labs done, etc. I realize this is very old thinking and that most kids now would make a spreadsheet, but we're a bit analog. My homemade transcripts are one-page but I make a multi-page Homeschool Portfolio with more detailed course descriptions that include the How: was the class self-designed, tutor-taught, online, or at a local college; the What: descriptions of what was learned and texts and resources used; and the How Assessed: how we measured the learning - tests, research papers, standardized tests, etc. You can do this!
  19. Timing is everything! He submitted his Common App Transfer application today, a few hours before it was taken down for this cycle. And the coach emailed him back! I'm holding him and his "real" family in the light.
  20. My Honorary ds19 has just today (!) decided he'd like to go back to school this fall after Green Mountain College closed up shop. He'd like to go to Warren Wilson where he was accepted last year. I'm proud of him for finally making the decision and emailing the admissions office and the soccer coach, but of course concerned (!!) that he's a bit late. They say they have rolling admissions, so here's hoping.
  21. DD22 needs to work on her French this summer before heading to grad school in Switzerland this fall. I looked through all of these programs as well as others online, and she's used Breaking the Barrier books 1 and 2. We just paid $10.00 to sign up for CMU online French 1 and it's great! She's pretty good with reading and writing, but is worried about real-time listening comprehension, and this program puts the focus on listening. You start the lesson by watching a video of professional actors doing a scene at regular speaking tempo, then the lesson breaks it down with multiple sections of re-listening, answering questions about what is being said to whom, in what order, then moving on to writing, spelling, and grammar. Seeing the body language and facial expressions seems to help with processing the sounds at speed in a more intuitive way than listening to the CDs from Breaking the Barrier. Plus we're watching together on the couch along with younger sister and having some great laughs at our own jokes about the characters while practicing. website: http://oli.cmu.edu/
  22. I'm a lurker here, never a poster, but today I'm stressing about having an abdominal/pelvic CT scan this morning to figure out blood in my urine. Urg. Then moving 2 harps in son's car because the harpmobile is asleep in the yard. Lecture/concert by DD late in the day. Fretting.
  23. Yes, DD 14 had them - horrible! She had them once a month for the year she was 12, basically instead of getting her real period. She would spend about 20 hours crouched on the floor, writhing and moaning at intervals - it really reminded me of labor. She would throw up 6 or more times and we would have to cancel all activities. She would then be just fine the next day. I took her to the FNP to see if it was appendix related, but got no diagnosis of anything. Finally she had the whopper one where she threw up so much we had to take her to the ER. They gave her a bag of fluids, did an abdominal ultrasound to check for...everything...gall bladder, cysts, etc, then were talking about a CT scan when by chance our family doctor ambled in and said, gee, this looks like a tummy migraine. Huh? So they gave her a suppository that ended the nausea (and a prescription for more in case of repeat) then home. I then took her to a DO and a homeopath, after which she immediately began having normal periods and no other tummy migraines. I'd never heard of these, but after the diagnosis other women started telling me they had also had them. Migraines definitely run in my family.
  24. DD22 finally received her "official" acceptance to Haute Ecole de Musique de Geneve. She'll get a Master of Music in Specialized Performance: Historic Harp Why: An amazing dream teacher How: Fulbright Scholarship, Swiss Government Excellence Scholarship
  25. Thank you all for these kind words. It's not really sinking in yet, though her papa did dig out his passport to check how long it's been expired.
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