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What educational thing does my kid want for his 11th birthday? UPDATE PAGE 3


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4 hours ago, ktgrok said:

If you go with 3D printer, this has info on the second page on how it aligns with common core, lol. https://www.lcps.org/cms/lib/VA01000195/Centricity/Domain/20267/3D Printing Handout.pdf?fbclid=IwAR0joGo6yOZgwGya6VV7aP9kx-nf9qYV6Ue_3h-i11KYGzwIHKBVHXW6rrs

Right now my son is creating 3D Pokemon characters using tinkerplay software. But it could be used even more "educationally". 

I hate to be nitpicky, but I would not use this document to support an application for funding.  There are no Common Core standards in science or social studies.  It appears that someone has assumed that since a state, maybe Colorado, uses common core standards for the subjects in which CCSS exist, that all of their standards are CCSS.  So, they've put CCSS in front of standards that are not Common Core.  

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54 minutes ago, crossette said:

Have you looked into thimble?  They ship out a subscription box every 3 months and have live/online robotics and coding classes during those months to teach you/your son how to use the supplies in the kits.  My friend loves these and they are on my bucket list for later. 

https://thimble.io/

Are there lots of choices for the live classes?  

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1 minute ago, BaseballandHockey said:

I hate to be nitpicky, but I would not use this document to support an application for funding.  There are no Common Core standards in science or social studies.  It appears that someone has assumed that since a state, maybe Colorado, uses common core standards for the subjects in which CCSS exist, that all of their standards are CCSS.  So, they've put CCSS in front of standards that are not Common Core.  

Ah, good to know. We hav to put it in our own words anyway, for our requests for funding, because it isn't enough to show that it is educational in a general way, we have to state how it would benefit OUR student. I was using it as a jumping off point...but hey, I bet your grandma doesn't know which subjects are common core  and which are next generation whatchamacallit, etc 🙂

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9 hours ago, BaseballandHockey said:

So, I have to ask.

Is blacksmithing always super expensive?  

When you posted this, I was like there's no way that an 11 year old can do that right?  But then I googled and there's a place not too far from us.  I think he'd love that!  Maybe I'll make that my gift to him if Gma turns us down.  

But then I looked at prices, and they require minors to bring an adult for safety (makes sense), and it appears that a series of 5 classes is $899 for the adult, and $299 for the kid, which comes out to $240 per lesson.   There's no way I could do that.  

Both my kids already have expensive hobbies, but neither of them come close to that level.  

So, apparently I misread the website.

The adult doesn't have to pay, but the kid classes are only 30 minutes, and they don't get to use anything hot for a while, they practice on clay and metals you can work cold.  

I think it's not the right choice.  $60 is a lot of money for 30 minutes of working with clay, and a two hour round trip for a minute activity, isn't going to work for my already kind of overscheduled kid.  

Maybe when he's older and can do the older kid classes. 

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I'd try to talk her into the cooking/charity idea. If he started a charity delivering meals to people in need, he'd work on math skills, reach out to adults (networking), solve problems, etc. If he succeeds and sticks with it, this is an excellent hook for a college application. The selective schools love to see things like this... (and she can show off about him to her friends!)

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5 hours ago, KungFuPanda said:

I’m beginning to wonder how many well-off musicians the OPs mother knows. 🤣 Is she going to be annoyed if the older son makes a career of it?

It's not about money it's about prestige.  She's probably thrilled with a starving artist.  The careers he's talked about, music education, nursing and physical therapy, would probably horrify her.  

 

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4 hours ago, Muttichen1 said:

I'd try to talk her into the cooking/charity idea. If he started a charity delivering meals to people in need, he'd work on math skills, reach out to adults (networking), solve problems, etc. If he succeeds and sticks with it, this is an excellent hook for a college application. The selective schools love to see things like this... (and she can show off about him to her friends!)

I guess I am struggling with choosing activities for my 10 year old based on how they look on a college application.  Maybe that's my hang up, but I feel like right now he likes to cook for homeless people because he's good at cooking, he likes to do things with his family, and he knows people need food. Those seem like better reasons to do it than a possibly pathway to the Ivy League.  

But yes, I should probably read some book about how to get into the Ivies and tell her that times have changed and modern day selective colleges like athletes who build robots and volunteer their time cooking for homeless people. 

 

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29 minutes ago, BaseballandHockey said:

I guess I am struggling with choosing activities for my 10 year old based on how they look on a college application.  Maybe that's my hang up, but I feel like right now he likes to cook for homeless people because he's good at cooking, he likes to do things with his family, and he knows people need food. Those seem like better reasons to do it than a possibly pathway to the Ivy League.  

I totally agree 100%, but I’m thinking people are saying these things as reasons you could give your mother to make her think they’re educational enough. Not because those are the actual reasons. 

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1 minute ago, KSera said:

I totally agree 100%, but I’m thinking people are saying these things as reasons you could give your mother to make her think they’re educational enough. Not because those are the actual reasons. 

I get that.  I think I thought I was starting the thread to get actual birthday suggestions, but what I really should have started was a thread called "JAWM My mother is nuts."  

I'm going to try telling her that Ivy League admissions officers approve of children feeding the homeless.  It has to be true right?  I mean, other than, apparently, my mother, are there people who don't approve of this activity? 

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4 minutes ago, BaseballandHockey said:

I get that.  I think I thought I was starting the thread to get actual birthday suggestions, but what I really should have started was a thread called "JAWM My mother is nuts."  

I'm going to try telling her that Ivy League admissions officers approve of children feeding the homeless.  It has to be true right?  I mean, other than, apparently, my mother, are there people who don't approve of this activity? 

Yup...have a conversation about how awesome that is going to look on his applications....he really wants to go to a good school and having volunteer projects he started on his own that span a long length of time will be really helpful. 

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I JAWY, your mother is totally nuts.  And I absolutely approve of manipulating her to treat her grandson right by lying about motives.

Did you know Yale has a school of nursing now?

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Posted (edited)

Honestly, maybe you should talk up how sports can be a hook for good competitive LACs, Ivies, etc. Isn't that what the Varisty Blues thing was based around-that athetic recruits, especially for minor sports, can get in when similar kids can't?

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, BaseballandHockey said:

I guess I am struggling with choosing activities for my 10 year old based on how they look on a college application.  Maybe that's my hang up, but I feel like right now he likes to cook for homeless people because he's good at cooking, he likes to do things with his family, and he knows people need food. Those seem like better reasons to do it than a possibly pathway to the Ivy League.  

But yes, I should probably read some book about how to get into the Ivies and tell her that times have changed and modern day selective colleges like athletes who build robots and volunteer their time cooking for homeless people. 

 

What if your DS cut your mother out of the loop?  (Later, when you've had more time, you can establish healthy boundaries with her.) I have a friend who does cooking for a homeless shelter.  She posts on FB with the date and payment information so, you can go help her cook or shop or donate to the effort if you prefer.  I say let that little dude go all in.  I'll bet you can get even get a church to donate their kitchen for an afternoon and get some friends to donate to his first grocery haul.  With a little publicity, he could be a local media darling and maybe even get local chefs to give him a good recipe for this kind of thing, or even walk him through assembling some meals.  

I'm obsessed with these guys lately.  This Chicken Tamale Casserole freezes and reheats well, but has enough steps (and commercial equipment in the video) to entertain a wannabe chef.  I sent their entrees playlist to my friend who organizes the shelter deliveries and she's already chosen a few to try.  A big production might seem like too much right now, but he could start small with a few casseroles to deliver and it wouldn't be too expensive.

 

ETA:  I'm not suggesting cutting your MIL out of your life, just writing her off as a revenue source to fund your DS's interests.

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1 hour ago, KungFuPanda said:

What if your DS cut your mother out of the loop?  (Later, when you've had more time, you can establish healthy boundaries with her.) I have a friend who does cooking for a homeless shelter.  She posts on FB with the date and payment information so, you can go help her cook or shop or donate to the effort if you prefer.  I say let that little dude go all in.  I'll bet you can get even get a church to donate their kitchen for an afternoon and get some friends to donate to his first grocery haul.  With a little publicity, he could be a local media darling and maybe even get local chefs to give him a good recipe for this kind of thing, or even walk him through assembling some meals.  

I'm obsessed with these guys lately.  This Chicken Tamale Casserole freezes and reheats well, but has enough steps (and commercial equipment in the video) to entertain a wannabe chef.  I sent their entrees playlist to my friend who organizes the shelter deliveries and she's already chosen a few to try.  A big production might seem like too much right now, but he could start small with a few casseroles to deliver and it wouldn't be too expensive.

 

ETA:  I'm not suggesting cutting your MIL out of your life, just writing her off as a revenue source to fund your DS's interests.

Because I think that if she gives a present to one kid and not the other, my kid will be hurt.  I think most kids would be hurt if their grandmother only gave gifts to their sibling.

i don’t need this to become some giant thing.  I don’t want him to be on TV it get a college scholarship or commit to doing it forever.  We will make food and share it whether or not she contributes.  But I need the disparity to not be right in his face.

The gift doesn’t have to be activity related or an experience, but I can’t come up with a tangible object she’d say yes to either.  

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8 minutes ago, BaseballandHockey said:

Because I think that if she gives a present to one kid and not the other, my kid will be hurt.  I think most kids would be hurt if their grandmother only gave gifts to their sibling.

i don’t need this to become some giant thing.  I don’t want him to be on TV it get a college scholarship or commit to doing it forever.  We will make food and share it whether or not she contributes.  But I need the disparity to not be right in his face.

The gift doesn’t have to be activity related or an experience, but I can’t come up with a tangible object she’d say yes to either.  

She is being cruel.

If your oldest ds weren't benefiting so much from her support for his music, you could just provide a reasonable gift for each boy "from Grandma," and limit their contact with her (as it sounds like you've already done, for good reason), and forget about other gifts. Right?

So, this

1 hour ago, Katy said:

I JAWY, your mother is totally nuts.  And I absolutely approve of manipulating her to treat her grandson right by lying about motives.

Did you know Yale has a school of nursing now?

is sound advice.

Vent about her as much as you like. Your son sounds like a lovely kid any sane, decent person would be thrilled to have as a grandson. She's missing out, but the key here is to minimize the harm to your ds.

So, I'm with Katy. Decide what will work for your ds, based on his own interests and personality. Then figure out how to sell the idea to Grandma. I wouldn't encourage your ds to cook for the homeless or play sports *because it might advance his interests down the road*, but because he enjoys those things. Nonetheless, if telling Grandma about how doing those things gets people into the Ivies will persuade her to support him, go for it.

One more gift idea, though you probably have plenty now: I saw a huge box of Keva (?) Planks in the MindWare catalog, and I'm pretty sure people here have sung their praises for kids who like to imagine and build. The box is enormous, and costs something like $500, but it's well within Grandma's range, if you can figure out how to sell it to her. He should be able to build all kinds of great bridges and buildings. Maybe suggest that you could see him as an architect.

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5 hours ago, Innisfree said:

She is being cruel.

If your oldest ds weren't benefiting so much from her support for his music, you could just provide a reasonable gift for each boy "from Grandma," and limit their contact with her (as it sounds like you've already done, for good reason), and forget about other gifts. Right?

So, this

is sound advice.

Vent about her as much as you like. Your son sounds like a lovely kid any sane, decent person would be thrilled to have as a grandson. She's missing out, but the key here is to minimize the harm to your ds.

So, I'm with Katy. Decide what will work for your ds, based on his own interests and personality. Then figure out how to sell the idea to Grandma. I wouldn't encourage your ds to cook for the homeless or play sports *because it might advance his interests down the road*, but because he enjoys those things. Nonetheless, if telling Grandma about how doing those things gets people into the Ivies will persuade her to support him, go for it.

One more gift idea, though you probably have plenty now: I saw a huge box of Keva (?) Planks in the MindWare catalog, and I'm pretty sure people here have sung their praises for kids who like to imagine and build. The box is enormous, and costs something like $500, but it's well within Grandma's range, if you can figure out how to sell it to her. He should be able to build all kinds of great bridges and buildings. Maybe suggest that you could see him as an architect.

He got Kapla for Christmas and loves it, but I think she would consider either a toy or construction. 

 

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7 hours ago, Katy said:

I JAWY, your mother is totally nuts.  And I absolutely approve of manipulating her to treat her grandson right by lying about motives.

Did you know Yale has a school of nursing now?

He could play trombone in the Yale orchestra!  🤣

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Can you just take the money she invests into your one son and split it between the two? Even if she pays for an item directly, maybe just reconfigure your budget so you can tell your sons the money was split between the both of them. 

 

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59 minutes ago, ktgrok said:

I REALLY want to find Grandma and explain that the heck a GIFT is. Spoiler: it's not supposed to be a way to manipulate someone, but something they LIKE. 

Right?  She could just get the boy a lego set.  Any lego set, he's not picky.  And be done with it. 

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16 hours ago, BaseballandHockey said:

I get that.  I think I thought I was starting the thread to get actual birthday suggestions, but what I really should have started was a thread called "JAWM My mother is nuts."  

I'm going to try telling her that Ivy League admissions officers approve of children feeding the homeless.  It has to be true right?  I mean, other than, apparently, my mother, are there people who don't approve of this activity? 

My mother might not approve of this, but then she's nuts as well 😉 . But then the whole "performative" thing is part of why we don't talk to her. 

How does your kiddo feel about your mom, anyway? 

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5 hours ago, Not_a_Number said:

My mother might not approve of this, but then she's nuts as well 😉 . But then the whole "performative" thing is part of why we don't talk to her. 

How does your kiddo feel about your mom, anyway? 

My kids have only seen my mother in person once in the past three years.  She came for Thanksgiving in 2019 and it was kind of a disaster.  Other than that, I call my mother every Sunday.  My oldest child is clear that he doesn't want to talk to her, and I make some excuse so he doesn't have to.  My youngest child, who doesn't know the details of the visit, will sometimes take the phone, talk for 30 seconds, and then hand it back to me.  That, and presents that we exchange twice a year, is the extent of their relationship.  

My youngest could tell you my mother doesn't like sports, and that she really likes music.  I don't know that he has any understanding of the difference in how she feels towards the two of them.  

 

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  • BaseballandHockey changed the title to What educational thing does my kid want for his 11th birthday? UPDATE PAGE 3

Update that's mainly to show how weird my mom, and possibly my kid are.

I called my mom from a baseball tournament this weekend.  DS10 was there, watching his brother's game, and decided to talk to her.  Sometimes he does and sometimes he doesn't.  He'd already played that morning, and they lost pretty badly and were eliminated. 

So, my mom said to him "What have you been doing?" and my kid says "I've been playing lacrosse".  Now, my son doesn't play lacrosse in any organized fashion, he and his brothers just borrow extra sticks from their cousins who do play, and they have 2 on 2 matches in the back yard.  The cousins are both girls, so they play by girls' rules with girls' sticks.  Why would he tell my mom he's been playing lacrosse?  My guess is that he didn't want to bring up something he cares about, which would be soccer, or where he was still processing a loss, which would be baseball  Or maybe it's because usually we talk on Sunday afternoon, and often he's playing with his cousins and he knows I tell her he's "playing sports" as a reason he can't come to phone.  I don't know what he was thinking.  Anyway, she asked him what team he was on, and he said his oldest cousin's name (the two of them usually team up against his brother and next oldest cousin).  Which she heard as the name of an actual team.  

My mom was so enthusiastic.  She went on and on about how lacrosse is a very fine sport, and you meet the right sort of people at lacrosse, and how they play lacrosse at all the good schools (aside: I'm pretty sure they also play soccer, and baseball, and basketball, and hockey, and swim and run track at those schools, but when he told her about those things she wasn't interested).  

My kid was so confused.  He's used to telling her about some sport, and she listens and says "Uh huh" and then changes the topic. He was like "gotta go Grandma, here's mom" and kinda shrugged and handed me the phone.  Maybe she thought he had to get back to his team?  

Anyway, apparently she's sending me a check that I can use to buy him lacrosse gifts for his birthday, so that he can get into the Ivy League as a lacrosse player.  Which is great in that he'll love having his own stick and helmet.  But I'm pretty sure that there is no one on the men's lacrosse team at the Ivy League whose entire experience consisted of playing Women's Lacrosse (a very different sport) in the back yard with their cousins.  So, I need to figure out whether I should feel obligated to sign him up for an actual team, so that he has say a 0.01% chance of making the Ivy League team, as opposed to just a 0% chance.  Honestly, his schedule is pretty booked, but maybe I could figure out something.

To provide you with a glimpse into exactly how ludicrous the whole thing is, my mom suggested that I buy him some tickets to college lacrosse games with the money.  We live pretty close to a state school with a top lacrosse program, so I said "Oh yes, we could go see the . . .  at U . .  " and there was silence.  Then she told me that she didn't have a public school in mind. The snobbery kills me. 

But he'll like road tripping a little further to a school that meets her approval. There's one about an hour away, and I'm sure she'll give us enough money maybe he could invite his cousin and some friends who like lacrosse, and it could be like a little lacrosse party.  He'll like that. 

Anyway, I guess it's a happy ending, in that he got heard and noticed for once, but I just had to tell it here to see if anyone else found this as deeply weird as I do.  

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Your mother is a caricature.  But win!  Your son gets a gift from Grandma that he’ll like and she’s happy to give. Also you are absolutely not obligated to get him into a “real” team.  Your mom can add this to her already burgeoning sack of delusions.

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1 minute ago, Danae said:

Your mother is a caricature.  But win!  Your son gets a gift from Grandma that he’ll like and she’s happy to give. Also you are absolutely not obligated to get him into a “real” team.  Your mom can add this to her already burgeoning sack of delusions.

OMG that's exactly what she is.  Like if you asked someone to describe a snob, they'd paint a picture in words of my mother.  

 

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Just now, mommyoffive said:

Very snobby.  But hey now you found the golden ticket and can use it every year, and then do whatever the heck you want to with the money.

Hmmm, I hadn't really thought about that option, spending it on anything I want for him.  I feel obligated to spend it on lacrosse.  Maybe there's a snobby lacrosse team in Hawai'i we could fly to see? (OK, it's probably not that much money).  Maybe soccer could be "cross training for lacrosse"?  

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3 hours ago, BaseballandHockey said:

Hmmm, I hadn't really thought about that option, spending it on anything I want for him.  I feel obligated to spend it on lacrosse.  Maybe there's a snobby lacrosse team in Hawai'i we could fly to see? (OK, it's probably not that much money).  Maybe soccer could be "cross training for lacrosse"?  

Would it assuage your conscience to spend SOME of it on lacrosse and spend most of the rest of it on something else? 

You can get him a real nice helmet and have LOTS of money left over... 

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1 minute ago, Not_a_Number said:

Would it assuage your conscience to spend SOME of it on lacrosse and spend most of the rest of it on something else? 

You can get him a real nice helmet and have LOTS of money left over... 

I think I'll just buy what I want him to have, like the most I could possibly want him to have, and then put the rest in a 529.  It still seems dishonest, like I'm accepting the money so that he can get a lax spot at the Ivy League, but I am not in any way using it to increase the likelihood of that happening.  

The whole thing is so weird.  

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5 hours ago, BaseballandHockey said:

Update that's mainly to show how weird my mom, and possibly my kid are.

I called my mom from a baseball tournament this weekend.  DS10 was there, watching his brother's game, and decided to talk to her.  Sometimes he does and sometimes he doesn't.  He'd already played that morning, and they lost pretty badly and were eliminated. 

So, my mom said to him "What have you been doing?" and my kid says "I've been playing lacrosse".  Now, my son doesn't play lacrosse in any organized fashion, he and his brothers just borrow extra sticks from their cousins who do play, and they have 2 on 2 matches in the back yard.  The cousins are both girls, so they play by girls' rules with girls' sticks.  Why would he tell my mom he's been playing lacrosse?  My guess is that he didn't want to bring up something he cares about, which would be soccer, or where he was still processing a loss, which would be baseball  Or maybe it's because usually we talk on Sunday afternoon, and often he's playing with his cousins and he knows I tell her he's "playing sports" as a reason he can't come to phone.  I don't know what he was thinking.  Anyway, she asked him what team he was on, and he said his oldest cousin's name (the two of them usually team up against his brother and next oldest cousin).  Which she heard as the name of an actual team.  

My mom was so enthusiastic.  She went on and on about how lacrosse is a very fine sport, and you meet the right sort of people at lacrosse, and how they play lacrosse at all the good schools (aside: I'm pretty sure they also play soccer, and baseball, and basketball, and hockey, and swim and run track at those schools, but when he told her about those things she wasn't interested).  

My kid was so confused.  He's used to telling her about some sport, and she listens and says "Uh huh" and then changes the topic. He was like "gotta go Grandma, here's mom" and kinda shrugged and handed me the phone.  Maybe she thought he had to get back to his team?  

Anyway, apparently she's sending me a check that I can use to buy him lacrosse gifts for his birthday, so that he can get into the Ivy League as a lacrosse player.  Which is great in that he'll love having his own stick and helmet.  But I'm pretty sure that there is no one on the men's lacrosse team at the Ivy League whose entire experience consisted of playing Women's Lacrosse (a very different sport) in the back yard with their cousins.  So, I need to figure out whether I should feel obligated to sign him up for an actual team, so that he has say a 0.01% chance of making the Ivy League team, as opposed to just a 0% chance.  Honestly, his schedule is pretty booked, but maybe I could figure out something.

To provide you with a glimpse into exactly how ludicrous the whole thing is, my mom suggested that I buy him some tickets to college lacrosse games with the money.  We live pretty close to a state school with a top lacrosse program, so I said "Oh yes, we could go see the . . .  at U . .  " and there was silence.  Then she told me that she didn't have a public school in mind. The snobbery kills me. 

But he'll like road tripping a little further to a school that meets her approval. There's one about an hour away, and I'm sure she'll give us enough money maybe he could invite his cousin and some friends who like lacrosse, and it could be like a little lacrosse party.  He'll like that. 

Anyway, I guess it's a happy ending, in that he got heard and noticed for once, but I just had to tell it here to see if anyone else found this as deeply weird as I do.  

This is very weird and also very familiar, lol.  My dad does a variation on it.  

As for the money, do whatever makes your kid happiest. If road tripping to the snobby school makes him happiest, then do that.  The only thing that would make me hesitate to do the trip is if grandma would expect status reports on it, or if she is the sort to start nagging about lacrosse going forward.  

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I hear ski'ing is also a creme de la creme sport (and I checked, there are ski teams at ivy leagues), but to meet the right people you'll have to stay at the nicest resorts for the entire season. Shucks. 

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2 hours ago, Moonhawk said:

I hear ski'ing is also a creme de la creme sport (and I checked, there are ski teams at ivy leagues), but to meet the right people you'll have to stay at the nicest resorts for the entire season. Shucks. 

“Mom, it’s not that I want to live in Aspen . . .”

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Actually, you could take him to a sporting goods store to look for lacrosse items -- and while he's there he will also show interest in some other things.  Maybe you could spend some of the money on "lacrosse" and some money on other things.  And some items -- cleats, athletic wear, gloves, etc. could be useful in multiple sports, including lacrosse.

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