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Old 10-24-2011, 03:39 PM   #121
meggiebeth
Have faith in your dreams and someday your rainbow will come smiling through...
 
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Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Essex, England
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fromscratchmom View Post
Now that I know I'll certainly try the chips. I like vinegar. I know what you mean about the different lingo. I knew before visiting England just a few words would be different, but I was surprised by how many. About the cheddar cheese, it would be fair to say that we have a lot of "cheese" here that is not like it should be. I put it in quotes because a good bit of it isn't even really cheese and is pretty yucky by taste and texture besides reading on the label as something strange like "processed cheese food product". We like real cheddar and my husband especially likes really sharp ones. I'm a label reader so I avoid most of the "cheese" in the grocery store but I know where to buy the good stuff.

Hehe, good for Rory. The stories of the six wives are kind of fascinating aren't they? I'm a history lover. My husband used to want to become a history teacher until he realized he was already making more money in computers over the summer during his college years than he could make as a teacher and that if he ended up teaching high school rather than teaching at the college level he'd have to deal with the behavior of kids and the crowd control issues that he saw with his little sister and her friends, who were all pretty wild at the time when he made that decision. But anyway, while I've been chatting with him as he drives and working offline on correspondence I mentioned our conversation and Jefferson and the Declaration... he started telling me about how there are a good many people who think all of the ideals of the Declaration of Independence are imitations from other thinkers such as Locke and Hobbes and Montesquieu, but that while many of our founding fathers were influenced by those same men there are some crucial differences and the Declaration of Independence is truly unique and pivotal in world history. And he gave me an interesting little refresher on the comparative philosophies of Jefferson and the three others I just mentioned.

The Declaration of Independence was essentially the result of the political problems that were going on in the American colonies just before the revolutionary war. It was the culmination of the landed men of the colonies having been discussing the seriousness they saw in those issues and debating between loyalty to the crown and the need to stand up for their rights as British citizens which they saw as being trampled. As the political tide turned and more and more decided the King would not reverse course but would oppress them and misuse them Thomas Jefferson was asked to draft this document which proclaimed to the King that they now saw themselves as independent of him and why.

Oh and DH says to say that while many schools dumb it down to the point of saying the whole thing was over the issue of "taxation without representation" that was actually number 14 on the list of reasons given on the document itself.

56 men signed the Declaration between August 2, 1776 and January 22, 1777, including two future presidents, three vice presidents, and ten members of the United States Congress.
There had been plenty of letters to the King before that time anyway, but obviously this one was different.
When he got this news he didn't exactly like it. A fair percentage of the signers of the Declaration ended up dead for having signed, some penniless, some with their families dead. But they are true American heroes, they and their sacrifices are the foundations of our country. We have one famous "founding father" who is mostly only famous to most people as a name, because his is the most prominent signature that can be read on the document. And his name has become synonymous with the word "signature". So sometimes when people here want you to sign something like perhaps your loan papers when you are buying a house or a car, they will say, "put your John Hancock right there".

The schools in our district our somewhere between average and very good, not the tops in the state but not at all bad by public school standards. My oldest child, my son, had a lot of learning challenges and he was basically "falling through the cracks". So I had to do something to help him. I pulled him out of school when he was mid-way through the fourth grade, but was two years behind in math, struggling with reading and having enormous social problems with kids and teachers too. I didn't know it yet at the time, but it turned out that he had Asperger's Syndrome. It was truly a hard job teaching him and I could see why the schools would have a hard time being equipped to handle every special need they run into. But without going into the rest of the story of his education before and after that point, that was how we found homeschooling. We just found it to be a really lovely lifestyle for our family and to have tons of amazing benefits. We love it. My daughters have never been to a school.

One of the strengths of homeschooling is the ability to individualize the education to the child completely. However that can also be seen as a drawback to homeschooling; any area where a child has a weakness becomes an area where you have to work harder, be diligent, find a way for them to succeed or even pull ahead in that subject. My kids are all great readers and the older two were both reading on a college level by the time they were twelve. (and that was after the public schools couldn't teach my son to read until I did it for them when he was the seven and eight years old.) I am weak in math and none of them seem to like math so that is where we have to have the most self-discipline and really work to make it happen.

But here is the great thing: It is all about letting your child (or helping them to) learn how to learn, to love to learn, to respect education and to be self-disciplined and independent. And while homeschooling as a movement or a personal choice is wonderful and I'd highly recommend it to just about anyone, it isn't really just about those can do it the way we do it. One of my favorite home school moms who lectures to other moms and sells a curriculum she wrote herself, is a woman who has her children in public schools and does what she calls "after-schooling" with them. She is supplementing their eduction essentially. Another person, a father, who I have bought curriculum from is a man whose wife had put together the materials to be used and had been homeschooling their children and then passed away suddenly. As a widower, he actually kept on homeschooling his kids right through until they all got accepted at excellent colleges and universities, even though he worked full time and they had to work mostly independently. Not to mention American History is full of amazing figures who were taught at home or were self-taught---world history for that matter. If you bone up on your history, you'll be doing the same wonderful thing!

We do not have an equivalent of the GCSEs, or I should say the GCSE test here. Our schools all have compulsory schooling right up to what we call twelfth grade. I think by design, our eleventh and twelfth grade are meant to be at the same level as your two years that you call second form. I remember back a million years ago when I was a teen participating in some and listening to a good deal of debate about whether the British system or the American system was superior as to that particular difference. If I got to decide I'm sure I'd switch us over to the British system. But many Americans tend to think that if everyone is not University-bound they have been wronged, where I think that to assign people privileges without equivalent responsibility is to do them wrong, and is quite probably a part of the reason for the continued decline in educational excellence that we have been experiencing here since before I was born. I've been aware of some of the facts about that situation in the past but I was recently horrified to learn that even the SATs and a huge percentage of college courses have been dumbed down since I took the SATs back in the 1980s.

Our SATs are tests that many students who want to go on to college or university have to take depending on which schools they are applying to. There are other similar tests that some schools ask for. The acronym stands for Scholastic Aptitude Test. And people also sometimes refer to them as "the college boards". Here if a student wants to go on to college after twelfth grade, they have to contact the schools they are considering attending and find out about the requirements for admission. Then if they still want to try to get in, they fill out an application and send it in along with all other requirements, such as official scores from the SAT or some other test. Then they wait to hear if they get accepted. Some schools will take nearly anyone no matter how poor of a student and some are extremely tough to gain entrance to.
I know what you mean about the environment in the schools, that certainly had an influence on me during my schooling and in my future ideas about schools in general.

I love the 4th of July. It is a fun holiday for sure. Unfortunately we do have plenty of people here who are into "political correctness" and don't seem to be aware of the problems associated with it or who let it inform their opinions way more than they should. But at least we also still have the other.

Mardi Gras is a holiday associated with the practice of lent, I believe. It seems like most people only celebrate it as a giant wild party or don't celebrate it at all; but I believe it started out as and may still be to some people a thing where they "party hard" before going on a fast or giving something up for lent. I'm not a catholic so those particular religious traditions could probably get a much better explanation from someone else.

Thanksgiving is a national Holiday now and has its roots back in the colonial era when the pilgrims of the Massachusetts Bay Colony had a several days long feast and celebration where they thanked God for the harvest. Although for the first hundred years or more after that there were different times and places that the same thing happened without uniformity, it is now always at the end of November (a good bit after the harvest for some of the states) and is generally celebrated with a feast and Thanks given to God for the food and for good things in life.

About the girl from Montana, maybe next month her family will at least be able to get a turkey and have a regular Thanksgiving the way they would have back home. I wonder if they could mail order just a few items that aren't available in the UK? I know the shipping is outrageous but you can often mail order foreign specialty foods here.

Haha, pizza and wings are a restaurant fad of the last ten or so years here. The "wings" are chicken wings with a spicy sauce on them. In restaurants part of the process of making them includes deep frying, but then that isn't the end of it. I can't imagine that getting them in the grocery store would be the same, but then again how many grocery store convenience foods are ever the same as what they mimic? They are often called Buffalo wings because of a restaurant in Buffalo, New York that made them. And for some strange reason lots of restaurants offer special deals for ordering pizza and wings at the same time. Well, I guess they are both the kinds of foods that people like for having a movie night or for having friends over to watch sports on the television. I like both things, but I've never actually had them in the same meal.

Now that you see how badly I can go on and on about history and then get told to put more in by DH, you'll be afraid to ask anything about it. But it is just a great subject to us. I'm glad you see the good in people liking their own country. I think the reasons that people decide we are all supposed to be ashamed of ourselves because of the past are rarely very well thought out and the emotionalism involved certainly prevents people developing a proper understanding of their own history and therefore ironically makes it all the more likely that if they get there way they are dooming the future to repetitions of those same past mistakes they are so upset about. Plus as with many other countries, Britain and America both have a lot of good things to be happy about in their histories along with the rotten things. Plus the British flag is great. I think that would be awesome if it was out in front of people's houses all over your beautiful country. And all the more so if I got to come and see it happen. Patriotism and TRAVEL. How could that be wrong?
Yes, I agree, although England and America both speak English, there are many different phrases. Me and my brothers have grown up watching so much American television that we know a lot of American jargon.

That's great then- if you can get hold of some 'mature' cheddar cheese, then that would taste wonderful with a baked potato and beans. My mum roasts them in the oven with sea salt, I think. I guess we were just tourists, but we weren't impressed with the cheese we bought in Florida. We must've bought the wrong stuff. Do you have red leicester cheese? That is also a really nice cheese.
Speaking of red leicester, I used to have it in a sandwich with marmite. I have always wondered whether you can get that in the US. You either love it or hate it! It is very strong- and some people have been known to spread it on very thickly, believing it is chocolate spread. Which... well... it chokes them. Literally.
I am also a history lover. Well, I have to say, it sounds like your husband made a good decision by not becoming a history teacher... for more than financial reasons. Both of my history teachers have a very difficult time managing some of the more 'reluctant' to learn students- and by that I mean they don't want to learn at all! Is he a college level teacher? I have to say that sounds more enjoyable than teaching at high school level. High school is compulsory, so I guess you would have to deal with kids who just DON'T want to be their- and their awful behaviour. I can't wait till college/ university, when pretty much everyone wants to be there and behaves.
I hate to say it... but I really don't understand much about the Declaration of Independence. I know that it was sent to the King of England... and the US wanted freedom... but that's about it. Lol. We talk about it rarely here- and the only time I have heard it mentioned in the UK is when I was about 7 or 8 and watching an episode of 'Fairly Odd Parents'.
It's embarrassing how controlling the British seemed. We had a huge empire, right up to the Victorian times, I think. Queen Victoria found presentation and image very important, obviously, and made her soliders wear bright uniform... red I think. Which obviously wasn't much of a disguise when invading other countries!
We have done a lot of work on Native Indians and the slave trade though, for the last three years. I would like to move on now. I am truly interested in American history, but it's hard for me to start learning it considering I know so little. The slave trade looked horrific. We watched a video at school of lots of black people on the ship tied to a chain, with rocks, I believe. Then they threw the rocks off the ship first, and the poor people were dragged off one by one and drowned. (And of course, that was by the British, right?!) AND the British sailed over and forced the Native Americans onto reservations. Doesn't sound like we were very nice to the US! We used to be very powerful until the first world war. Then... we kind of got overtaken. Lol.
Obviously, though, the Declaration was part of the reason America got freedom, right? It's a shame people had to die for it though.
Were there just the Native Americans in America when the British came? Doesn't that mean that most Americans are actually British? Sorry, I guess Pocahontus isn't exactly the best source to go by!
It sounds like your decision to take your son out of school was a great move!Understandably, it must have been hard for his school dealing with all of his learning challenges... but I thought they were meant to deal with things like that anyhow. But I think that you taking him out was great in the respect that he will get a lot more attention and help. And it sounds like you're a great teacher anyway! I am interested in seeing how well my school teaches... and I do notice that the students who find learning a challenge DO fall through the cracks. And most of them are badly behaved too, I think because they don't really see themselves improving much. And they don't get the help that they need, either. I find it really sad.
If only most challenged children had the opportunity to be homeschooled by their parents. It sounds like your son has a far more positive future because of it. As for the college level reading- that IS impressive! So your son could not read much until you homeschooled him? I guess it just goes to show that even when the school 'can't'... it sounds like they can! Did they not give your son 'individual' help? Some children at my school have one or two hours help a week individually with a teaching assistant or teacher.
Who does like maths?! I have always disliked it, and I am struggling now that we are learning GCSE level things. To go from E, D and C level things to A and A* things is very difficult!
So do you teach your kids together, or split up your time individually? I can't imaging my mother teaching me and my brothers. She would be shouting at us after 10 minutes!
If you don't mind my asking, I have always been told that homeschooling means your social skills are not as developed as they would be if you were in school. (I have seriously asked my parents if I can be homeschooled... for... like 3 years!) How did your kids make friends if they didn't go to school? I have been told a lot that homeschooling is lonely and you don't interact with people your own age much.
That is a great idea about the mother who supplements her kids' education after school. I think that is a great idea! Your second story is really sad! But it sounds like the father never gave up- and having a full time job must have made it very challenging! My parents both work full time and come home exhausted each day, so I can't imagine how challenging it must've been for the father. I'm not sure if it's legal to be 'self-taught' here- otherwise I would have tried it.
Infact, when we were in FL, we were driving in the car listening to the radio when an advert came on for school on the internet?! Something like that anyway. So instead of homeschooling, you can go to school on the internet. I suppose you have to apply yourself well to be able to do that successfully, but it sounded interesting to me. I wish SO much we had that here! It always seems like there are more opportunities in America... and I'm missing out!
I do think GCSEs are a good idea. I am very surprised that there is not an equivilent to them in the US! If you have GCSEs you are more likely to get a better paid job than someone with no GCSEs (or should I say, someone who hasn't passed them.) School is compulsory up until year 11... (isn't that the 10th grade?) and then we have the choice to go onto sixth form... only if we have good enough GCSEs though! When my parents took them, they were called O-Levels and A-Levels. And there were two different O-Levels- one for more 'capable' students, and one for academically challenged students. But then they were combined to make GCSEs... which are meant to suit everyone. But recently, they have been relatively easy to pass, and if you didn't do very well in your test, you were allowed to re-do it until you passed! Infact, our last government, labour, were apparently to blame for this, and claimed there were better results since them coming into power, when infact they had just made them easier to pass! Our new coalition government is changing this though, I think, which is good... but it also means GCSEs will be harder for me!
So if you have no GCSEs or A-Levels, can anyone get into university? When my dad was in uni, only about 5% of students went to university/ college after school, but since labour has encouraged more people to go, and helped more people to pass GCSEs, even students with A grades haven't gotten a place in university. And people come out of university or college to find there are no jobs for them!
Really? We do SATs here too! However they don't sound as serious as yours. We don't do them at the end of school either. We do them in year 2 (first grade, right?) year 6 (fifth grade?) and we used to do them in year 9, but this was abolished a few years ago. So SATs define whether you get into university in the US? Are they as important as GCSEs?
The 4th July sounds great. It's one of your BIG holidays, isn't it? I would love to experience it, and have heard there are lots of celebrations, parades and fireworks.
We have too much political correctness too. Aparently, having a British flag on display in public might offend ethnic minorities. And we are not supposed to call the green man on the traffic light that anymore, but instead a 'green person', because it might offend those who aren't men!
I suppose political correctness is linked to sueing. (I think I spelt it right?) When we drove up to WDW, there were huge billboards saying things like; 'HAVE YOU HAD AN INJURY AT WORK?' and other circumstances that you could sue people for. When we stereotype America, we think 'sueing' and 'guns'. We have to have guns registered here, but there is a lot of knife crime in and around London and other large cities.
Oh, so THAT'S what Mardi Gras is! We don't have that, but we do have pancake day! I think it's meant to be so you use up all the 'nice' foods ready for Lent. Our pancakes are different to the thick fluffy ones in the US though. They are like the French crepes... if you have ever tasted them? And heavenly with lemon juice and sugar.
I don't mean to sound offensive, but is America very religious? My mum's friend used to live in Jacksonville, Florida, and said most people were religious, and the church communities were very friendly and accepting. I think it's lovely that you all say 'blessed'... and I have actually caught on and started to say it too! It sounds like such an appreciative, positive thing to say.
Oh, I kind of sensed that Thanksgiving was to do with food because of the turkey. Is it almost as big as Christmas? It sounds quite festive!
I always knew that 'wings' were popular in America! In Walmart or Publix, they advertised wings as 'wyngz' and they came with pizza in a box. In Walmart, they sell tea in petrol cans. I could spend hours looking at all the 'interesting' food in Walmart especially. They have started selling Hershey Kisses in our local supermarket here, and although I think they are disgusting, I will buy anything to remind me of WDW and America!
The girl from Montana's mother is actually English, and I believe she married an Englishman in the US... so I don't think they celebrate Thanksgiving. She has just told me that they go to a special place in the UK to get American foods... at a price of course! Tell me about it in regards to the expensive postage costs from the US... I want to get a CD from WDW but the postage is something ridiculous like $30.
You and your DH sound awesome when you talk about history! You know so much about it! You both sound so passionate- and proud of your country's history! Patriotism is great- I wish the British were proud to be British again! Oh well... it gives me more excuse to go to America again to see it!
There are lots of British flags in London and touristy places... just not in normal towns and cities. I wish we could be more like America in that aspect! It sounds like you love to travel! Well we have that in common too! What could be better that seeing new cultures, experiencing different places and learning all the while!

Quote:
Originally Posted by WDWRids View Post
We had a GREAT time. I just love WDW. It truly is the happiest place on earth!! We stayed for a week w/ my DHs sister and her husband. Was so sad when we had to leave. Wasn't sure when we would make it back (went the last two years in a row) but now have found out I get to go for work in March 2012!!! So excited. I'll work during the day but DH will play. Then we will meet up and have the nights. Probably will take a day or two extra.
It's fabulous that you had a great time! We were also in awe when we first went to WDW. We have been on holiday to lots of other places, but not one has had people as polite, happy and curteous as Disney! So you didn't go with kids? I'm so glad that adults love it too- my parents think Disney is for children and I'm the only person who misses WDW every day of the year!
What great luck that you're going for work... and only about 1/2 a year away too! I'm guessing your DH has been bitten by the Disney bug too! I never quite understood people before our trip when they said 'You WILL be back.' But now I do! WDW is addictive! Are you staying on property? You're so lucky- you have so much planning to do! That's half the fun, after all!
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$5 A Day Means Disney MY Way! An October TR
~Our 18 day trip to Walt Disney World. Deluxe Dining Plan, Keys to the Kingdom Tour,
MNSSHP, Epcot Food & Wine Festival and MVMCP all in one trip!~



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Old 10-25-2011, 01:16 PM   #122
meggiebeth
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California Grill and EMHs at MK until 2am!

Welcome back!

Dinner at California Grill

So, after a rest at SSR and a much needed trip to Walmart for a buggy for Rory, we headed out to the CR for our 9:30 ADR at California Grill. We parked at the CR and walked right up. We didn't get seated until about 9:50, which wasn't good- because we were still waiting for our server when everyone else rushed out to the viewing area to see Wishes!
William was being a spoilsport and said he had no interest in seeing Wishes- and refused to come out. This influenced Rory too, who said he would rather sit and watch William play on his iPod!? I was disappointed and ready to DRAG Rory out, because I knew it would be something he'd enjoy. But... my parents didn't let me. *Sob*. Unfortunately, Rory didn't see Wishes at all on the trip, which was one thing I certainly regret... but fortunately one of the only things.
By the time we got out to the viewing area, there were SO many people that we couldn't see at all. I had no idea that it would be sooooo crowded, and couldn't help being disappointed. And I am very short for a fourteen year old, so I could barely see at all.
I am embarrassed to say it, but I was close to tears. I was embarrassed because I had been telling my parents for months that California Grill was one of the BEST restaurants at WDW, and the view of Wishes was to die for. Unfortunately, only a quarter of the people eating there were at the front of the balcony, most other people had a restricted view.
My parents saw I was sad and I couldn't see much, and shoved me to the front. A kind lady said she didn't mind me going infront of her. However, my parents couldn't see well which made me sad, as I wanted to enjoy it WITH my family. I don't think it was our fault we had a bad view, seeing as we had not much choice and had been stuck at our table while everyone else virtually ran out.
As if anything else could go wrong, the music was not piped in! I was confused because I knew it was meant to be. Halfway through, it suddenly came on though. Better than nothing, right?! The rest of the display WAS magical, even though I wasn't enjoying it near my parents, and my brothers didn't get to see it.
So, we went back in and sat down... with some photos!...





Our waitress came back with our appetizers. I think she was from Maryland? But I couldn't remember her name. She was BY FAR the best server we had all holiday, and me and my parents loved her! She was very attentive, sat for the longest time ever and gave advice and detailed descriptions on each of the courses, and was very friendly. We needed to charge our camera which she also had no problem with.

She convinced my mum to try sushi. Unfortunately, my mum didn't like it. Not because it wasn't good... but she just discovered she was not a sushi person at all.

I had some sort of flatbread. It would be nice to a 'foodie' but I found the cheese WAY to strong. I'm not an adventurous eater at all!

For entrees, me and my parents all had the same thing. It was some sort of pasta with mushrooms. Forgive me, I can't remember the name of the dish! It was nice and full of flavour. I can't remember what William had, but Rory was brought out salmon and something else? It looked nice, but Rory was fast asleep by then, bless him, and didn't eat it.

I had made sure my parents put on the ADR that it was their anniversary and my father's birthday... mainly because I had heard and seen a photo of the chocolate cake they give out that isn't on the menu. Okay... okay... my parents don't really like chocolate cake. But... I was willing to be kind and helpful... and volunteer! Haha! Unfortunately, we were not brought out anything at all... which really surprised me seeing as I thought signature restaurants would be more likely to do this.

Although my family were full... I was not! I saw the chocolate pudding thing on the menu... and ordered it. One of my favourite puddings of the trip! Mmmmmmmmmm.



Okay, that's an embarrassing photo. Here are our last photos of the CG before leaving:











We were one of the last people out. We gave the waitress a big tip... we were very impressed with her.

Afterthought on CG:

Although it was a unique restaurant and the service was very good, as well as the dessert, we weren't very impressed with the restaurant as a whole. For one of the most expensive restaurants in WDW, we were expecting a bit more.
I don't mean to sound negative, but it just wasn't our thing. And if we didn't have the dining plan, and were paying OOP, we would definately feel it wasn't worth the money. For people who think they will have an amazing view of Wishes and a quiet, peaceful time, I think they would be disappointed with how crowded the balcony is and how not everyone can see very well (especially when you factor in the price of eating at CG!)
If you haven't tried it and are into sushi, etc, this could be a good place to eat. But for us, it just wasn't one of our favourites.

EMHs at Magic Kingdom!

So after CG, we walked right over to MK, anxious for our first EMHs! I was very excited! I can see why people love the CR and BLT, because of their convenience to MK.

We headed in at about 11:30, and walked up to Space Mountain. Instead of the hour wait during the day, we waited about 15 or 20 minutes. Rory woke up, realized he was in a buggy and was extremely embarrassed, so hopped out. Besides, who could say no to MK with barely any queues?!
We went on the SM track to the right, which definately seemed faster than the other one! It did to us anyway!



It was mostly people coming out of MK. After about 20 minutes, it was far more empty, but, oh my, what a wonderful atmosphere!

Then... we rode on...



Which to my parents, me and Willum was 'meh'. But as Stitch is Rory's favourite Disney character, it was well worth it, seeing the smile on his face and the excitement as he saw the 'real' Stitch! The ride was virtually empty. There were a few other families, but most seats were empty. It was funny when Stitch licked you... hahaha!

Then, it was time for...



YAY! We had ridden this in DLP... which is one of the few rides I can remember. This ride was virtually empty... no queue at all. As we were walking in, I saw a ginormous cockroach on the floor. I virtually screamed. It was the first cockroach I have ever seen in person. So for the rest of the ride, I was scared there would be lots of cockroaches in the ride. I kept scanning the boat floor for them. Ikr, I am paranoid.







Awwww, lovers! My parents are so cute together.







When we got back to SSR, we saw this little guy! CUTE!



There were always frogs hanging around near our villa. There were lots of lizards too... but I preferred the frogs! LOL!

So, MK EMHs are a MUST for us! We loved them. We felt like VIPs, being let in when the park was closed to the public.

Thanks for reading! See you soon!
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Dad Mum Meg (17) William (15) Rory (9) Oscar (4)

$5 A Day Means Disney MY Way! An October TR
~Our 18 day trip to Walt Disney World. Deluxe Dining Plan, Keys to the Kingdom Tour,
MNSSHP, Epcot Food & Wine Festival and MVMCP all in one trip!~



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Old 10-25-2011, 07:12 PM   #123
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meggiebeth View Post
... Do you have red leicester cheese? That is also a really nice cheese.

Speaking of red leicesteeicester, I used to have it in a sandwich with marmite...
The thing about finding and purchasing nice cheese here is that you have to live in a place that has a nice cheese shop and not all towns or cities have them. There are some here where I live, but then there is also a new and very small, but growing thing where people are learning the craft of making cheese at home and some who do this and then sell their cheeses in farmers markets. So any town or city that has a farmer's market has the possibility that there might be a little bit of really nice cheese in some of the stands there. So I was thinking that the next time your family vacations in Orlando, just go to a nice cheese shop, thinking Orlando would be big enough to have one, but then, I looked it up on the internet and couldn't find that there is one there. I'm so surprised by that given that I thought it was a fair sized city. I found this foodie link with people discussing it.

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/351250

So I guess what you will need is a dismeet with a disser who can bring cheese from Tampa or some other location in a cooler on their trip.

Well, since I am blessed to live in a place where we have a few good places to go for cheese, I am going to make it a point to try to find some red leicester to try. I'm sure I can get some even if it isn't always stocked. For that matter I can probably get some marmite to try to if I make some effort. (They have a US website and it was sooo funny.) Its been a kind of hobby of mine on and off again over the years to try new recipes with interesting ingredients and to find a way to track the ingredients down. Quite a few years ago I made something with some greek yogurt and at first it seemed like no one had ever heard of it until I finally found a specialty shop way downtown that did carry it regularly. Now its a big fad here and every grocery store in the country seems to have greek yogurt in multiple brands and with added flavors too. I think I should be able to claim to be a trend setter! LOL ok, maybe not, but I'm allowed to be amused with myself anyway. right?

Quote:
Originally Posted by meggiebeth View Post
I am also a history lover... Is he a college level teacher?...

I hate to say it... but I really don't understand much about the Declaration of Independence... an episode of 'Fairly Odd Parents'.

It's embarrassing how controlling the British seemed. We had a huge empire, right up to the Victorian times, I think. Queen Victoria found presentation and image very important, obviously, and made her soliders wear bright uniform... red I think. Which obviously wasn't much of a disguise when invading other countries!
We have done a lot of work on Native Indians and the slave trade though, ...but it's hard for me to start learning it considering I know so little....

Obviously, though, the Declaration was part of the reason America got freedom, right? It's a shame people had to die for it though.

Were there just the Native Americans in America when the British came? Doesn't that mean that most Americans are actually British? Sorry, I guess Pocahontus isn't exactly the best source to go by!
He doesn't teach at all. He just went into a computer career when he and I were married, which has worked out well financially. Although I admit I sometimes wonder if he is happy in it. His job is pretty high-stress and has some unique non-computer related problems for him to be faced with unlike what I would think most IT jobs would be. So sometimes I worry that it would be better for him to get out of it. But he is a man who just goes on stolidly day in and day out.

That is too funny that the Declaration of Independence was mentioned in that show. I think I know the right way to break it down to its real simplicity... people miss it and think it is complex because it in a language style from the past and it has been made a big deal in people's mind as a big part of history, etc. Oh and it was handwritten of course and there is can be a quite an issue with looking through modern eyes at Thomas Jefferson's handwriting and spelling.

But just think of it this way. Start with the definition of the word declaration. Say you feel really strongly about something and you are determined to communicate it properly to your parents and so you decide to write a letter to them and be careful of your wording to not only correctly communicate exactly what you mean to but also to make sure to let them know how serious you are about it or to convince them to agree with you. That is the first half of what happened. You can make a personal declaration to someone in your life that effects you and those colonists made a political declaration to their King. And yes, they were all British subjects at that point. And then the second part is just what you have already said that they wanted to be free and that was what the whole declaration they were making was about. They had decided to be free of Britain and they just went and wrote their King and said, We are free now whether you like it or not and here is why we have decided this.

I can see how its embarrassing, but on the other hand it was a different time and therefore literally a different culture and people saw things through the paradigm of their time. Just as we do now, I might add. And every society so far has had its good and its bad. None of them have been perfect, just as none of us are perfect as individuals. I really prefer to look to the good that various societies have produced and the older times in Britain were foundational to have what you have as Britain today as well as America. I think you have plenty to be proud of!

You know how most of us, on a personal level, are our own worst critics? And there are things we don't like in ourselves that we would readily overlook or forgive in others? I think we do that a lot with history right now. Like I recognize the ills of the past in America but I don't necessarily look down on other countries even if the ills I know of them seem just as bad or worse or might be fairly recent.

Oh and about the bright red uniforms. They had those back before Victoria as well. They had them when they were fighting us in our Revolutionary war. We have a few famous references that most American's have heard about "the redcoats" which was the term for the British soldiers when the colonists had just suddenly stopped thinking of themselves as British people or British subjects and were walking around calling themselves Americans and getting excited about it. I suppose it wasn't unique to the colonists here calling them that though.

The thing about the slave trade and the way it is presented now days is that it is out of context. It used to get glossed over or ignored which was wrong and now in reaction to that it gets taught as if it was the biggest evil in world history and as if it was all one-sided and that isn't good either. I wish there were more of a happy medium so to speak where we could recognize it for what it was without ignoring the other parts of the story. There were actually more white slaves taken to Africa by the Moors than there were black slaves taken out of Africa to Europe and America. Only generally the European slaves that were taken to Africa were worked to death or killed outright so much more consistently that in the long run there was never a matter of very many continuing generations that came from those slaves. Also the majority of people involved in capturing African slaves and selling them to the European slave trade ships were Moors and other African tribal peoples. Sadly those pesky little facts don't appeal to the people who are so successfully trying to sell us on political correctness and "euro-white-guy-guilt" There is a very interesting book about the topic of the Europeans who were carried away into slavery called White Gold by Giles Milton. Its a biography of a specific slave that was taken there so not an overview of all white slaves, but fascinating nonetheless. I actually really like biographies and find them to be great help in studying history for a lot of different reasons.

I have 2 recommendations for you related to your interest in history. Try asking for a good Atlas for Christmas (either a historical Atlas or one that includes a decent historical section) and then you'll have it in your personal library to refer to when a map will help you understand what you are reading up on. And then also start making yourself a timeline. You could make your own in some sort of blank binder. Then just fill in some of what you already know on it about British History and about World History. You don't need to put a lot of details, just a basic outline of a few events, making sure that the design of your notebook allows for the addition of new pages anywhere within it. Then when you get the chance and feel like reading up a bit, pick a book about someone's life that interests you or about a specific event or time period and then as you read or after you finish a book just fill in a little here and there along your outline with basic dates and captions and occasionally tiny tidbits of what really interested you in what you read. Over time you'll get a bigger and better understanding of how things fit together. Really all of history is too overwhelming for anyone to take in all at once. It sounds like you may always be a history lover, but you never know; you might be fascinated by American history right now, the last tsars of Russia next year and any number of other topics in quick order in some other year further in the future. For some people it would just be a school project, albeit a useful one, but for a history lover it has a bit more potential... You're likely to really capitalize on the potential it has to help you with your overall understanding of history and at some point your personal timeline might even be a treasured possession to keep on the shelf with your scrapbooks. And scrapbooking utilizes similar crafting skills. lol.
If you want to make one here is what I bought for my girls for them to make theirs, and there may be similar things available from other sources: http://www.homeschoolinthewoods.com/...cordofTime.htm

http://www.homeschoolinthewoods.com/HTTA/timeline.htm

I bought the notebooks and one of those computer discs in advance of the year we would have needed them. And now both of my girls love to draw. Had I known how very artistic they would turn out to be I wouldn't have bought that disc. In the end most of the visuals on theirs might turn out to be stuff they draw themselves.
and here is a link where you can get ideas for making your own from the pics: http://www.squidoo.com/homeschooltimelines

and here is a really good one if later you really want to purchase a pre-printed timeline to supplement what you make and to compare to it: http://rainbowresource.com/product/A...&category=1907


Quote:
Originally Posted by meggiebeth View Post
Understandably, it must have been hard for his school dealing with all of his learning challenges... but I thought they were meant to deal with things like that anyhow. ... I find it really sad.

...Who does like maths?! I have always disliked it, and I am struggling now that we are learning GCSE level things. To go from E, D and C level things to A and A* things is very difficult!
So do you teach your kids together, or split up your time individually? I can't imaging my mother teaching me and my brothers. She would be shouting at us after 10 minutes!

If you don't mind my asking, I have always been told that homeschooling means your social skills are not as developed as they would be if you were in school. (I have seriously asked my parents if I can be homeschooled... for... like 3 years!) How did your kids make friends if they didn't go to school? I have been told a lot that homeschooling is lonely and you don't interact with people your own age much.

That is a great idea about the mother who supplements her kids' education after school. I think that is a great idea! Your second story is really sad! But it sounds like the father never gave up- and having a full time job must have made it very challenging! My parents both work full time and come home exhausted each day, so I can't imagine how challenging it must've been for the father.

I'm not sure if it's legal to be 'self-taught' here- otherwise I would have tried it.

Infact, when we were in FL, we were driving in the car listening to the radio when an advert came on for school on the internet?! ...seems like there are more opportunities in America... and I'm missing out!

School is compulsory up until year 11... (isn't that the 10th grade?) ... But recently, they have been relatively easy to pass, and if you didn't do very well in your test, you were allowed to re-do it until you passed! Infact, our last government, labour, were apparently to blame for this, and claimed there were better results since them coming into power, when infact they had just made them easier to pass! Our new coalition government is changing this though, I think, which is good... but it also means GCSEs will be harder for me!

So if you have no GCSEs or A-Levels, can anyone get into university? When my dad was in uni, only about 5% of students went to university/ college after school, but since labour has encouraged more people to go, and helped more people to pass GCSEs, even students with A grades haven't gotten a place in university. And people come out of university or college to find there are no jobs for them!

Really? We do SATs here too! However they don't sound as serious as yours. We don't do them at the end of school either. We do them in year 2 (first grade, right?) year 6 (fifth grade?) and we used to do them in year 9, but this was abolished a few years ago. So SATs define whether you get into university in the US? Are they as important as GCSEs?
Yep, the schools are supposed to deal with any learning challenges no matter how difficult or rare. But you know, for every sorry story of how badly some teacher or administrator behaved or did something wrong there is another someone out there that really cares and really does try to help kids. There are all sorts in the world and in the schools. I have a bit of a prejudice now against mandatory public school systems for lots of different reasons, but I also try to recognize the good people trying to work within those systems and how difficult their jobs are.

Some subjects I teach the girls together (history and geography come to mind) and somethings we have to divide up (math for sure). And there are parts of their work that they do mostly independently anyway, more and more each year in fact. For highschool level math I'm likely to buy a video or online curriculum for them where they have access to a teacher and I won't have to do it. lol.

I don't mind. A lot of people who don't know many homeschoolers feel like the "lack of socialization" as they tend to call it would be a naturally occurring problem and it can be in rare cases. But for the most part it isn't a problem for us or for hardly any of the other homeschoolers we have known. For one thing, on a level of where that thinking comes from and how valid is it... Really if you think about it, the way that children are put into mandatory schooling and divided up by strict age segregation is a bit unnatural compared to what they will face in the workforce some day and it is a relatively recent modern phenomenon. While it has created a good bit too much of a society of conformism and peer pressure it hasn't fundamentally changed or improved human development. I think it just worries us all before we try homeschooling because we came up in that system and so that is what we know. Secondly, most homeschoolers here now have loads of other homeschoolers and homeschooling group opportunities that they may participate in as well as opportunities where they might mix with kids from the public schools too. For my kids the most consistent extra has been church attendance, Bible classes and social times with their friends from church. But they have also had public service projects, swimming classes at the local rec center, ice-skating lessons at a local ice-rink, and other similar things. Since we don't regularly participate in a homeschool coop group, most of their extra activities are with both homeschooled and public schooled kids mixed together.

Ah well. I can understand that. I'm sure I would have felt the same way if I had ever heard of homeschooling back when I was struggling through the public schools. But we all have our difficulties in life and I'm a great believer in human potential. You could be anywhere, doing anything in the future. And what you go through now will just be the past to look back and think "well, I might as well not regret it since it was part of what got me to where I am now."

Yes, I think your year 11 would be our 10th grade. It sounds like Britain has had some political shenanigans within education that are very similar to some of the things that go on here! lol. People will always try to get away with stuff won't they?!

And it sounds like your SATs are probably equivalent to another type of testing we have here. Depending on what state you live in or which district within that state most kids here have testing periodically after certain school grades, tests to make certain the kids are on tract or tests to grade the school as a whole, or other reasons too. Our SATs are pretty important. Well they are not important at all to kids who aren't interested in college, but they are to everybody else. I guess the only way that those non-college bound kids previous schooling effects what type of job they can get is whether or not they graduated from high-school; some kids "drop-out". Its sort of mandatory up through graduation, and dropping out is certainly frowned upon by society, but after a certain age if someone chooses to take themselves out of school and work at a low level job there won't be any ramifications for them or their parents legally speaking as long as they let the school know and maybe sign a paper about it.

And yes, anyone can get into college. However not anyone can get into just any college. Better schools can be very competitive to get into. And lesser schools can be easier to get into. Some community colleges might even take people who never graduated highschool under very special circumstances, if they later went through the proper steps to make up some of that education or show that they learned the materials that would have been taught.

Quote:
Originally Posted by meggiebeth View Post
The 4th July sounds great. It's one of your BIG holidays, isn't it? I would love to experience it, and have heard there are lots of celebrations, parades and fireworks.
It sounds like you need to get to come to the U.S. for the 4th some day! Make sure if you get the opportunity to do that that you plan to be somewhere with a really spectacular fireworks display or at least a decent one. I love fireworks! Almost every small town has a display it seems like, but some of them are very small displays. The big fireworks that are required for public displays are very expensive apparently. But bigger cities sometimes have big shows. I'd imagine the one at the capital in D.C. is huge although I've never watched that one myself. When I was a kid the ones at the big military bases were the best local ones where I lived but I'm not sure if the public can get into those since 9'11. I think if I were taking a trip for the 4th I would go either to one of our largest cities, to D.C. or to Stone Mountain in Georgia. (I lived in that area when I was in high-school.)

Quote:
Originally Posted by meggiebeth View Post
We have too much political correctness too. Aparently, having a British flag on display in public might offend ethnic minorities. And we are not supposed to call the green man on the traffic light that anymore, but instead a 'green person', because it might offend those who aren't men!

I suppose political correctness is linked to sueing. (I think I spelt it right?) When we drove up to WDW, there were huge billboards saying things like; 'HAVE YOU HAD AN INJURY AT WORK?' and other circumstances that you could sue people for. When we stereotype America, we think 'sueing' and 'guns'. We have to have guns registered here, but there is a lot of knife crime in and around London and other large cities.
I supposed the political correctness is sometimes linked to law-suits. Isn't that sad? And yes, we have way to much of people sueing going on here. Its outrageous. And it is becoming a big political issue as to whether there should be laws to limit the insanity and if so what type of laws. I'm not surprised that people in other countries know how nuts that has gotten here. But its pretty sad isn't it? I'm definitely pro-gun. I don't want one for myself, or never have so far. But I appreciate the philosophy behind the right to bear arms, as its stated in our constitution. And I guess that would be noticeable to people in other countries where they don't have that. Related to your comment on knife violence, some pro-gun people here have a slogan "guns don't kill people, people kill people" and I've always appreciated that. I find it so odd that a lot of people so strongly connect the willingness to commit personal acts of violence with a particular weapon. But on the other hand I also find it odd that so few American's even know why our forefathers included "the right to bear arms" in our constitution. It was to say that people have the right to refuse to be governed to protect themselves from tyranny. So essentially they would look at how many of the freedoms that they fought and died for that we have lost over the years from apathy, lack of understanding or outright ignorance since the revolution and say to us to rise up and fight the current government again with our guns. Lucky for our government, I don't actually want to do that. Of course I want for some of the loss of freedom to be reversed and I still have hope that it will be.

Quote:
Originally Posted by meggiebeth View Post
... but we do have pancake day! I think it's meant to be so you use up all the 'nice' foods ready for Lent. Our pancakes are different to the thick fluffy ones in the US though. They are like the French crepes... if you have ever tasted them? And heavenly with lemon juice and sugar.
I think I would like your pancake day! I've had crepe's before. I can't imagine anyone not liking that holiday.


Quote:
Originally Posted by meggiebeth View Post
I don't mean to sound offensive, but is America very religious? My mum's friend used to live in Jacksonville, Florida, and said most people were religious, and the church communities were very friendly and accepting. I think it's lovely that you all say 'blessed'... and I have actually caught on and started to say it too! It sounds like such an appreciative, positive thing to say.
I'm not offended by religious questions. And the answer is yes, I am religious. I believe in the God of the Bible and I believe that the Bible is his word. It's pretty central to my life and my decisions. I think where I live maybe between 50% and 70% of the people are religious to some extent. And when I lived in other places I saw different amounts of it. More in Georgia and Florida and less in Maryland, or it seemed that way to me. I agree with you about saying "blessed". I don't think I used to say that when I was younger. I sort of grew into an appreciation of the idea.

Quote:
Originally Posted by meggiebeth View Post
Oh, I kind of sensed that Thanksgiving was to do with food because of the turkey. Is it almost as big as Christmas? It sounds quite festive!
In one sense Thanksgiving is as big as Christmas. Pretty much everyone that can get off of work for a holiday gets it off, just like Christmas. All the schools let out. Nearly everyone celebrates it just like Christmas. But I guess I'd have to say that we spend less money and less time on it, since Christmas seems to take so much planning and all the presents and decorations and Thanksgiving doesn't have as much of those things. The decorating tends to be a lot more basic and it isn't necessarily a gift giving occasion

Quote:
Originally Posted by meggiebeth View Post
You and your DH sound awesome when you talk about history! You know so much about it! You both sound so passionate- and proud of your country's history!...
Aww, thanks! Its a pleasure to correspond with a fellow history buff!

Quote:
Originally Posted by meggiebeth View Post
...And I am very short for a fourteen year old...
So now I can't help feeling curiosity. How tall are you? Are you done growing? I'm such a butisnsky! My DD13, is 5'3" and we found out that she is basically done growing so she has been verra frustrated about wanting to be taller and getting teased mercilessly about being short by her 6 foot tall father. But I'm not quite 5'5" and I'm fine with being less than average height, plus after we found out she was done growing I started noticing that we know plenty of women who are just as short or even more short but I had just never noticed it about them before. I guess it isn't something that matters to me much. Oh wait, I have to think about what those heights would be if I was more used to thinking in metric.... DD is 1.6 and I'm not quite 1.651 meters. Is that how y'all tend to express height? in meters and decimals? We usually say it in feet and inches since we are so old school on measurements.
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Old 10-25-2011, 07:24 PM   #124
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Oh, and I meant to mention about your question about if we had been British... I said yes, and that is true that most of the colonist that were the foundation of what we have as America today were British. But there were also groups from other countries that came here all along. The first British settlement here that lasted was Jamestowne in the Virginia colony, but there is a town in Florida called St. Augustine that is older from when the Spanish tried to colonize there. There is a lot of French influence in the Louisiana area and of course the French are the folks we bought the land from in the big "Lousiana purchase". There is some Dutch history associated with New York City. And slightly later than the earliest colonial times quite a few Germans settled in Pennsylvania and there are still communities of their descendents there known as the "Pennsylvania Dutch" people. From that time on out America received so many immigrants from so may different places that some people like to refer to our whole country as one big "melting pot".

For my husband and myself we both are aware of very similar family backgrounds. We both have some German and some Irish in us. And as is the case with a lot of Americans we have reason to suspect plenty of English blood in us but don't know all the details of where it is in the family trees.
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Old 10-26-2011, 08:56 AM   #125
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Originally Posted by meggiebeth View Post
It's fabulous that you had a great time! We were also in awe when we first went to WDW. We have been on holiday to lots of other places, but not one has had people as polite, happy and curteous as Disney! So you didn't go with kids? I'm so glad that adults love it too- my parents think Disney is for children and I'm the only person who misses WDW every day of the year!
What great luck that you're going for work... and only about 1/2 a year away too! I'm guessing your DH has been bitten by the Disney bug too! I never quite understood people before our trip when they said 'You WILL be back.' But now I do! WDW is addictive! Are you staying on property? You're so lucky- you have so much planning to do! That's half the fun, after all!
We went several times when I was young - once to Disneyland but I was too young to remember that. We would camp at Fort Wilderness (in a motorhome). Had so many great memories w/ my parents, grandparents and friends. Then when I got older we didn't go as much and did beach vacations. DH went his first time at the age of 19 (20 yrs ago). We went once for a one day trip when I was in town for work in early 2000. So we really enjoyed going for a week last year and planned and went this year. Now I have the blues and ready to go back for another week. Which makes it so exciting that we will be able to go in March for a few days.

You see things differently going once you are an adult. It's really funny but you notice alot of things I would say the adults notice more than kids/young adults. Most are interested in just the rides and characters not the scenary or the food or the decorations like you do. I admire you for that!! You have a great eye!

No, we do not have kids but become big kids ourselves at Disney. I love to see how the kids react to characters! Can't wait until my nephew gets old enough we can go with him.

Looking forward to the planning - looking at restuarants now to make ADRs. Hey - which resturant do you recommend? What was your favorite?

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Old 10-29-2011, 03:33 PM   #126
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The thing about finding and purchasing nice cheese here is that you have to live in a place that has a nice cheese shop and not all towns or cities have them. There are some here where I live, but then there is also a new and very small, but growing thing where people are learning the craft of making cheese at home and some who do this and then sell their cheeses in farmers markets. So any town or city that has a farmer's market has the possibility that there might be a little bit of really nice cheese in some of the stands there. So I was thinking that the next time your family vacations in Orlando, just go to a nice cheese shop, thinking Orlando would be big enough to have one, but then, I looked it up on the internet and couldn't find that there is one there. I'm so surprised by that given that I thought it was a fair sized city. I found this foodie link with people discussing it.

http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/351250

So I guess what you will need is a dismeet with a disser who can bring cheese from Tampa or some other location in a cooler on their trip.

Well, since I am blessed to live in a place where we have a few good places to go for cheese, I am going to make it a point to try to find some red leicester to try. I'm sure I can get some even if it isn't always stocked. For that matter I can probably get some marmite to try to if I make some effort. (They have a US website and it was sooo funny.) Its been a kind of hobby of mine on and off again over the years to try new recipes with interesting ingredients and to find a way to track the ingredients down. Quite a few years ago I made something with some greek yogurt and at first it seemed like no one had ever heard of it until I finally found a specialty shop way downtown that did carry it regularly. Now its a big fad here and every grocery store in the country seems to have greek yogurt in multiple brands and with added flavors too. I think I should be able to claim to be a trend setter! LOL ok, maybe not, but I'm allowed to be amused with myself anyway. right?



He doesn't teach at all. He just went into a computer career when he and I were married, which has worked out well financially. Although I admit I sometimes wonder if he is happy in it. His job is pretty high-stress and has some unique non-computer related problems for him to be faced with unlike what I would think most IT jobs would be. So sometimes I worry that it would be better for him to get out of it. But he is a man who just goes on stolidly day in and day out.

That is too funny that the Declaration of Independence was mentioned in that show. I think I know the right way to break it down to its real simplicity... people miss it and think it is complex because it in a language style from the past and it has been made a big deal in people's mind as a big part of history, etc. Oh and it was handwritten of course and there is can be a quite an issue with looking through modern eyes at Thomas Jefferson's handwriting and spelling.

But just think of it this way. Start with the definition of the word declaration. Say you feel really strongly about something and you are determined to communicate it properly to your parents and so you decide to write a letter to them and be careful of your wording to not only correctly communicate exactly what you mean to but also to make sure to let them know how serious you are about it or to convince them to agree with you. That is the first half of what happened. You can make a personal declaration to someone in your life that effects you and those colonists made a political declaration to their King. And yes, they were all British subjects at that point. And then the second part is just what you have already said that they wanted to be free and that was what the whole declaration they were making was about. They had decided to be free of Britain and they just went and wrote their King and said, We are free now whether you like it or not and here is why we have decided this.

I can see how its embarrassing, but on the other hand it was a different time and therefore literally a different culture and people saw things through the paradigm of their time. Just as we do now, I might add. And every society so far has had its good and its bad. None of them have been perfect, just as none of us are perfect as individuals. I really prefer to look to the good that various societies have produced and the older times in Britain were foundational to have what you have as Britain today as well as America. I think you have plenty to be proud of!

You know how most of us, on a personal level, are our own worst critics? And there are things we don't like in ourselves that we would readily overlook or forgive in others? I think we do that a lot with history right now. Like I recognize the ills of the past in America but I don't necessarily look down on other countries even if the ills I know of them seem just as bad or worse or might be fairly recent.

Oh and about the bright red uniforms. They had those back before Victoria as well. They had them when they were fighting us in our Revolutionary war. We have a few famous references that most American's have heard about "the redcoats" which was the term for the British soldiers when the colonists had just suddenly stopped thinking of themselves as British people or British subjects and were walking around calling themselves Americans and getting excited about it. I suppose it wasn't unique to the colonists here calling them that though.

The thing about the slave trade and the way it is presented now days is that it is out of context. It used to get glossed over or ignored which was wrong and now in reaction to that it gets taught as if it was the biggest evil in world history and as if it was all one-sided and that isn't good either. I wish there were more of a happy medium so to speak where we could recognize it for what it was without ignoring the other parts of the story. There were actually more white slaves taken to Africa by the Moors than there were black slaves taken out of Africa to Europe and America. Only generally the European slaves that were taken to Africa were worked to death or killed outright so much more consistently that in the long run there was never a matter of very many continuing generations that came from those slaves. Also the majority of people involved in capturing African slaves and selling them to the European slave trade ships were Moors and other African tribal peoples. Sadly those pesky little facts don't appeal to the people who are so successfully trying to sell us on political correctness and "euro-white-guy-guilt" There is a very interesting book about the topic of the Europeans who were carried away into slavery called White Gold by Giles Milton. Its a biography of a specific slave that was taken there so not an overview of all white slaves, but fascinating nonetheless. I actually really like biographies and find them to be great help in studying history for a lot of different reasons.

I have 2 recommendations for you related to your interest in history. Try asking for a good Atlas for Christmas (either a historical Atlas or one that includes a decent historical section) and then you'll have it in your personal library to refer to when a map will help you understand what you are reading up on. And then also start making yourself a timeline. You could make your own in some sort of blank binder. Then just fill in some of what you already know on it about British History and about World History. You don't need to put a lot of details, just a basic outline of a few events, making sure that the design of your notebook allows for the addition of new pages anywhere within it. Then when you get the chance and feel like reading up a bit, pick a book about someone's life that interests you or about a specific event or time period and then as you read or after you finish a book just fill in a little here and there along your outline with basic dates and captions and occasionally tiny tidbits of what really interested you in what you read. Over time you'll get a bigger and better understanding of how things fit together. Really all of history is too overwhelming for anyone to take in all at once. It sounds like you may always be a history lover, but you never know; you might be fascinated by American history right now, the last tsars of Russia next year and any number of other topics in quick order in some other year further in the future. For some people it would just be a school project, albeit a useful one, but for a history lover it has a bit more potential... You're likely to really capitalize on the potential it has to help you with your overall understanding of history and at some point your personal timeline might even be a treasured possession to keep on the shelf with your scrapbooks. And scrapbooking utilizes similar crafting skills. lol.
If you want to make one here is what I bought for my girls for them to make theirs, and there may be similar things available from other sources: http://www.homeschoolinthewoods.com/...cordofTime.htm

http://www.homeschoolinthewoods.com/HTTA/timeline.htm

I bought the notebooks and one of those computer discs in advance of the year we would have needed them. And now both of my girls love to draw. Had I known how very artistic they would turn out to be I wouldn't have bought that disc. In the end most of the visuals on theirs might turn out to be stuff they draw themselves.
and here is a link where you can get ideas for making your own from the pics: http://www.squidoo.com/homeschooltimelines

and here is a really good one if later you really want to purchase a pre-printed timeline to supplement what you make and to compare to it: http://rainbowresource.com/product/A...&category=1907




Yep, the schools are supposed to deal with any learning challenges no matter how difficult or rare. But you know, for every sorry story of how badly some teacher or administrator behaved or did something wrong there is another someone out there that really cares and really does try to help kids. There are all sorts in the world and in the schools. I have a bit of a prejudice now against mandatory public school systems for lots of different reasons, but I also try to recognize the good people trying to work within those systems and how difficult their jobs are.

Some subjects I teach the girls together (history and geography come to mind) and somethings we have to divide up (math for sure). And there are parts of their work that they do mostly independently anyway, more and more each year in fact. For highschool level math I'm likely to buy a video or online curriculum for them where they have access to a teacher and I won't have to do it. lol.

I don't mind. A lot of people who don't know many homeschoolers feel like the "lack of socialization" as they tend to call it would be a naturally occurring problem and it can be in rare cases. But for the most part it isn't a problem for us or for hardly any of the other homeschoolers we have known. For one thing, on a level of where that thinking comes from and how valid is it... Really if you think about it, the way that children are put into mandatory schooling and divided up by strict age segregation is a bit unnatural compared to what they will face in the workforce some day and it is a relatively recent modern phenomenon. While it has created a good bit too much of a society of conformism and peer pressure it hasn't fundamentally changed or improved human development. I think it just worries us all before we try homeschooling because we came up in that system and so that is what we know. Secondly, most homeschoolers here now have loads of other homeschoolers and homeschooling group opportunities that they may participate in as well as opportunities where they might mix with kids from the public schools too. For my kids the most consistent extra has been church attendance, Bible classes and social times with their friends from church. But they have also had public service projects, swimming classes at the local rec center, ice-skating lessons at a local ice-rink, and other similar things. Since we don't regularly participate in a homeschool coop group, most of their extra activities are with both homeschooled and public schooled kids mixed together.

Ah well. I can understand that. I'm sure I would have felt the same way if I had ever heard of homeschooling back when I was struggling through the public schools. But we all have our difficulties in life and I'm a great believer in human potential. You could be anywhere, doing anything in the future. And what you go through now will just be the past to look back and think "well, I might as well not regret it since it was part of what got me to where I am now."

Yes, I think your year 11 would be our 10th grade. It sounds like Britain has had some political shenanigans within education that are very similar to some of the things that go on here! lol. People will always try to get away with stuff won't they?!

And it sounds like your SATs are probably equivalent to another type of testing we have here. Depending on what state you live in or which district within that state most kids here have testing periodically after certain school grades, tests to make certain the kids are on tract or tests to grade the school as a whole, or other reasons too. Our SATs are pretty important. Well they are not important at all to kids who aren't interested in college, but they are to everybody else. I guess the only way that those non-college bound kids previous schooling effects what type of job they can get is whether or not they graduated from high-school; some kids "drop-out". Its sort of mandatory up through graduation, and dropping out is certainly frowned upon by society, but after a certain age if someone chooses to take themselves out of school and work at a low level job there won't be any ramifications for them or their parents legally speaking as long as they let the school know and maybe sign a paper about it.

And yes, anyone can get into college. However not anyone can get into just any college. Better schools can be very competitive to get into. And lesser schools can be easier to get into. Some community colleges might even take people who never graduated highschool under very special circumstances, if they later went through the proper steps to make up some of that education or show that they learned the materials that would have been taught.



It sounds like you need to get to come to the U.S. for the 4th some day! Make sure if you get the opportunity to do that that you plan to be somewhere with a really spectacular fireworks display or at least a decent one. I love fireworks! Almost every small town has a display it seems like, but some of them are very small displays. The big fireworks that are required for public displays are very expensive apparently. But bigger cities sometimes have big shows. I'd imagine the one at the capital in D.C. is huge although I've never watched that one myself. When I was a kid the ones at the big military bases were the best local ones where I lived but I'm not sure if the public can get into those since 9'11. I think if I were taking a trip for the 4th I would go either to one of our largest cities, to D.C. or to Stone Mountain in Georgia. (I lived in that area when I was in high-school.)



I supposed the political correctness is sometimes linked to law-suits. Isn't that sad? And yes, we have way to much of people sueing going on here. Its outrageous. And it is becoming a big political issue as to whether there should be laws to limit the insanity and if so what type of laws. I'm not surprised that people in other countries know how nuts that has gotten here. But its pretty sad isn't it? I'm definitely pro-gun. I don't want one for myself, or never have so far. But I appreciate the philosophy behind the right to bear arms, as its stated in our constitution. And I guess that would be noticeable to people in other countries where they don't have that. Related to your comment on knife violence, some pro-gun people here have a slogan "guns don't kill people, people kill people" and I've always appreciated that. I find it so odd that a lot of people so strongly connect the willingness to commit personal acts of violence with a particular weapon. But on the other hand I also find it odd that so few American's even know why our forefathers included "the right to bear arms" in our constitution. It was to say that people have the right to refuse to be governed to protect themselves from tyranny. So essentially they would look at how many of the freedoms that they fought and died for that we have lost over the years from apathy, lack of understanding or outright ignorance since the revolution and say to us to rise up and fight the current government again with our guns. Lucky for our government, I don't actually want to do that. Of course I want for some of the loss of freedom to be reversed and I still have hope that it will be.



I think I would like your pancake day! I've had crepe's before. I can't imagine anyone not liking that holiday.




I'm not offended by religious questions. And the answer is yes, I am religious. I believe in the God of the Bible and I believe that the Bible is his word. It's pretty central to my life and my decisions. I think where I live maybe between 50% and 70% of the people are religious to some extent. And when I lived in other places I saw different amounts of it. More in Georgia and Florida and less in Maryland, or it seemed that way to me. I agree with you about saying "blessed". I don't think I used to say that when I was younger. I sort of grew into an appreciation of the idea.



In one sense Thanksgiving is as big as Christmas. Pretty much everyone that can get off of work for a holiday gets it off, just like Christmas. All the schools let out. Nearly everyone celebrates it just like Christmas. But I guess I'd have to say that we spend less money and less time on it, since Christmas seems to take so much planning and all the presents and decorations and Thanksgiving doesn't have as much of those things. The decorating tends to be a lot more basic and it isn't necessarily a gift giving occasion



Aww, thanks! Its a pleasure to correspond with a fellow history buff!



So now I can't help feeling curiosity. How tall are you? Are you done growing? I'm such a butisnsky! My DD13, is 5'3" and we found out that she is basically done growing so she has been verra frustrated about wanting to be taller and getting teased mercilessly about being short by her 6 foot tall father. But I'm not quite 5'5" and I'm fine with being less than average height, plus after we found out she was done growing I started noticing that we know plenty of women who are just as short or even more short but I had just never noticed it about them before. I guess it isn't something that matters too me much. Oh wait, I have to think about what those heights would be if I was more used to thinking in metric.... DD is 1.6 and I'm not quite 1.651 meters. Is that how y'all tend to express height? in meters and decimals? We usually say it in feet and inches since we are so old school on measurements.
It sounds like you are a big cheese lover! It's such a shame you have to go to that much effort to get some decent cheese in the US. Although it is well known for its 'plastic' cheese, I had always thought Walmart and the likes would have had some decent cheese. In the UK, most of the cheese sold in the supermarkets is nice. You do get the processed cheese, but there's cheddar, and another popular cheese here is stilton. Which to me is disgusting. Have you tried it? It has mould in it I think, but is apparently 'tasty'. It is very strong- my parents love it, and whenever my grandmother comes down, we have a cheese platter filled with cheese you're meant to taste. Including stilton. I have to say, although I am not into food much, I like strong cheese without being TOO strong. Stilton and cheeses like it have just way too much flavour for me. If you have never tried it (but I assume you have!) I would reccommend trying it. If you are anything like my parents, you will love it!

I am surprised that there are no cheese shops in Orlando! Isn't that one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world?! As for marmite, you should try it! It is rather different from anything you will have had before!

You should try some British recipes, definately! Our dishes don't tend to be sophisticated, but they are tasty! Cottage pie and sheperds pie are delicious. Of course fish and chips are not exactly something you can replicate on your own... frying and stuff. Toad in the Hole is delicious too. Here is a link to a really good website if you are interested in trying any recipes:

http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/content/r...sines/british/

LOL about the greek yoghurt! What IS greek yoghurt? My guess would be yoghurt from Greece.

Oh, an IT job? Oops, I thought he was a history teacher! My uncle used to work at a bank in 'the city' (London), and whilst he was highly paid, he really did not like it, apparently. He finally left and now he and my aunt are running a fairly successful chain of cafes in London- which he enjoys a lot more. If your husband is not always happy in his job- I suppose he could always try a different career. But I can see why people find that hard to do... especially nowadays when the economy is so bad and there is a massive lack of jobs. My other uncle works in IT and has been made redundant many times. I guess his IT job isn't exactly 'in demand' at the moment.

The Declaration of Independance sounds fascinating. I had always thought that it seemed rather complicated, but your explaining it has made it much clearer. I had no idea that it was about freedom from Britain. Haha- I can see what you mean- 'declaration' is a rather strong word in the sense of 'declare'! I can see why the King was angry, but it was still a brave thing to do.

Yes, I guess I (and many people) do forget how different people's principles and expectations were in the past. Like you say, it was a whole different culture! I would love to time travel back to the Victorian times for a day- that is my favourite era. I am watching a great drama called Downton Abbey on television with my parents at the moment. Have you heard of it? An episode was on the aeroplane on the way to Florida. If you like television dramas and history it is a great programme. It shows a great insight into the huge gap between the servants and employers in a stately estate.

Unfortunately at schools, they only teach you a small amount of history. In primary school, they tend to teach about the Victorians, the Tudors and the Egyptians. In secondary school it is the plague, the slave trade, medieval times, the two world wars and Native Americans. So I don't get to learn much American history at all. America seems like such a great country to me, and so does the history of it! Unfortunately, look up a topic on the internet and it is just so overwhelming and complicated.

Yes, I am very proud of Britain and being from Britain. It has so much history... and was once really powerful, right? It's just recently that we are not as good a country as we used to be, because of the government and political issues, etc. I know America has it's own problems- it was on the news a few weeks ago that the government were being silly about debt or something? I can't remember. Apparently the US was close to being bankrupt. Whenever I say I would rather live in America, people say 'But it's so DANGEROUS! And it hasn't much history, either!' Still, Celebration near WDW would be a great place to live, I remain convinced!

Goodness- how much history do you know? It sounds like as well as American history you know British history, what about European history? I suppose you must know a lot about Asia too! Did you study it in university? I think you know more than my history teacher! Lol. I didn't know that the red uniforms were around before Victoria's reign. I guess it's only fair that Americans want to be called that rather than British. It's all about power... Britain wanted lots of it! Have you been to Italy... Florence... Rome... Pompeii? I have always wanted to go there. Pompeii especially because of those bodies that have just been frozen in their positions by the lava. The one that touched me the most was a photo of a mother clutching her young child, and they were still in that position. On the other side of Mt Vesuvius I believe there was another town... was it Herculanium? There are many buildings there, including an enormous villa, that cannot be escavated (spelling?) because of the risk of collapse. And there are priceless items, like scrolls, trapped in there that aren't retrievable.

I didn't know there were white slaves taken to Africa from Europe. That is shocking. I thought that it was just black people. It is one of the most cruel things in world history isn't it? The way they were packed in on those ships, and whipped and lashed. To be honest, it is pretty shocking and evil. I can't believe we did that as a nation to people! Wasn't there a big problem and lots of segregation in the US in the 1960s?
In relation to slavery, I am interested in WW2, but mainly the holocaust. I find that shocking. Have you seen the movie 'Schindler's List'? It is shocking but a good movie. At least the ending is happy in a way. It is a very long movie, but it tells a story. (And a sad one at that!) I also like the Anne Frank movie, I know it isn't exactly historical, but the end made me cry. I am reading the book at the moment and am nearly at the end. It is scary to me that she died at the age of 15- the same age that I am now!
'White Gold' sounds very interesting. I honestly had no clue that there was such a thing as a white slave- treated as badly as they treated black slaves! I definately want to read it- but I will probably wait a year or two... if something is really horrific I have nightmares about it.

Thank you for the reccommendations! I already have an atlas but it is more geographic than historical. I shall look in a book shop to see what they have. The 'Record of Time' Timeline Notebook looks really interesting. I really want to buy it. What do you do exactly in it? Is it a timeline or a notebook where you write in details that sort of form a timeline? Anyhow, it looks really interesting. The postage is 'only' $25- not that bad considering it's from America. That's about £17 I think. I paid $50 would you believe for a cardigan and skirt to be sent over.
You certainly make history sound interesting! I have always found it fascinating, but after talking to you about it I have realized how much I enjoy talking about it and learning new things. The other links on the timelines are very interesting too- so thankyou!
Yes- I agree that there are lots of good teachers that go out of their way to help a child- and I really respect them for it. My aunt is head teacher/ principle of a school and although it is very hard work and stressful, she really loves it. I can see how challenging it must be for teachers- especially teaching those with behavioral problems. I have seen myself a teacher dealing with a particularly challenging pupil, and it was rather uncomfortable to watch. The teacher was trying very hard to get him to work, but all he did was make rude faces, swear and do absolutely no work whatsoever. I think learning issues can be easier to deal with than behavioral issues…
How old are your two girls now? If they are only a few years apart then teaching them the same things I’m guessing are easier. Maths is hard to teach, and IMO to learn too! I see maths as a chain; and you have to learn one thing to know how to do the next. I couldn’t imagine teaching high school maths! That would be too challenging. I can see why you would get someone/ something else to teach them at high school level! Do you not teach your son anymore? Is he an adult? Lol.
Oh, so your kids socialize a lot in clubs and groups! I have a very religious friend who likes Bible classes too, and studying the bible. I think the way you teach them at home and then let them attend clubs and groups as well are a great combination. It takes away the pressures of school and the controlling atmosphere. Lol. I’m sure they don’t get into trouble for being late to ‘school’ or not doing homework. I would like that! Do you have a set timetable like school does, or do you just do whatever comes to mind? And do you get up really early for home school? I’m guessing that homeschooling would take less time than going to school- right? Because your kids get your attention and help a lot easier than at school. I guess you can ‘tailor’ the lessons to your kids, rather than at school when a student just has to ‘like’ the teaching methods or ‘lump it’. I agree about dividing people up by their ages- it creates such a barrier between people of different ages. It sounds stupid, but at my school a year 9 would never be friends with a year 10. And there could be just 1 month between their birthdays.

It sounds like your SATs are similar to A-levels then! Applying for jobs can require you putting down you’re a-level results and they determine whether you can get into university or college at all. We used to have ‘colleges’ as you call them, but our government changed them all into universities, I’m not sure why. I’m guessing that college in the US is the same as university here. Yes, like you say, the year 6 SATs here can determine how good the school is. OFSTED comes to schools and inspects them, and SATs make it more likely to get an ‘outstanding’ rating. My primary school was rated outstanding, but mainly because of the SAT results. And the reason there were such good results was that the school spent a whole year forcing children to revise and train. I had never heard of a school doing that before. So the SATs results weren’t exactly representing how good the school was at teaching- they just essentially trained children to pass the SATs.
Yes about the 4th July- I would love to experience it! The fireworks in Washington D.C. would probably be overwhelmingly busy- I would love to just go to a ‘normal’ town or city as long as the display was good. Thanksgiving and Halloween are things I would also love to be in the US for. I have never heard of Stone Mountain in Georgia. Is that a nice place to be on 4th July? It certainly sounds it!
The law suits sound scary. I heard about the woman who got a fortune when she sued Mcdonalds because the coffee cup she had did not state that it was hot… and she got burnt. A year or so ago, a girl broke her heel off her shoe at her prom/ dance and she got tens of thousands of £s.
I had heard that lots of women carry around guns in their handbags in America… a bit scary! I can imagine how dangerous parts of America are but surely that isn’t helped by the public carrying around guns all the time! Knifes scare me too- I think you have to be over 18 to buy them here but over 18s misuse them too!
Religion sounds nice. I guess it points you and a lot of others to the right path. I’ve always thought it nice that God is meant to look after you and protect you, and how when you don’t know what to do you can rely on religion. Goodness- that’s quite a large percentage! I would say 20- 30% of people where I live are religious. Most people are either Christian but don’t really believe in God or religion, or have no religion. Wow- you’ve lived in a lot of places! And they’re all quite far away from each other, right?
Thanksgiving sounds a lovely holiday. And quite different to Christmas, obviously, but it seems just as festive. Christmas is stressful in the aspect that you have to spend an absolute fortune on presents and other ‘Christmassy’ things. We probably spend about £1000 each Christmas. Eeek. That is a lot on money for one day! I do like the idea of celebrating food and being thankful though. Sounds like such a fun time.
I am about 5”. So not tall at all. I hope I haven’t stopped growing, I don’t want to be this small forever! Lol! My mother is 5’5” and my father is quite short… being Scottish. Whenever we go to Scotland I feel at home- people tend to be shorter for some reason! Tell your DD 5’3” is a good height! Better than mine! Your height is good too. I definitely wouldn’t consider 5’3” or above to be ‘short’. Hahaha, I never use the metric system. My parents were raised using the imperial measurements and raised me like that too. I have to use metric measurements at school but as a family we always use inches and feet for height. I do know the US uses mostly imperial, right? We still use miles for the roads… and we weigh babies in pounds and ounces. But everything else we mainly use metric. People my parents’ ages use imperial still though! I suppose you can’t get out of the habit. Lol.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fromscratchmom View Post
Oh, and I meant to mention about your question about if we had been British... I said yes, and that is true that most of the colonist that were the foundation of what we have as America today were British. But there were also groups from other countries that came here all along. The first British settlement here that lasted was Jamestowne in the Virginia colony, but there is a town in Florida called St. Augustine that is older from when the Spanish tried to colonize there. There is a lot of French influence in the Louisiana area and of course the French are the folks we bought the land from in the big "Lousiana purchase". There is some Dutch history associated with New York City. And slightly later than the earliest colonial times quite a few Germans settled in Pennsylvania and there are still communities of their descendents there known as the "Pennsylvania Dutch" people. From that time on out America received so many immigrants from so may different places that some people like to refer to our whole country as one big "melting pot".

For my husband and myself we both are aware of very similar family backgrounds. We both have some German and some Irish in us. And as is the case with a lot of Americans we have reason to suspect plenty of English blood in us but don't know all the details of where it is in the family trees.
Yay so I may be talking to someone with English blood! Lol. It doesn’t really surprise me, but I love that Americans tend to have European blood in them. St Augustine?! I DESPERATELY wanted to go there when we went to Florida, but my parents weren’t as interested as me and we didn’t have time anyway. My parents are convinced Florida is boring history-wise, but when I found St Augustine I thought it would be a great place to visit. Have you ever been there? If so, did you like it? I am determined to get back to WDW in the next year or 2, and when we go I will make a big effort to get to St Augustine.

Quote:
Originally Posted by WDWRids View Post
We went several times when I was young - once to Disneyland but I was too young to remember that. We would camp at Fort Wilderness (in a motorhome). Had so many great memories w/ my parents, grandparents and friends. Then when I got older we didn't go as much and did beach vacations. DH went his first time at the age of 19 (20 yrs ago). We went once for a one day trip when I was in town for work in early 2000. So we really enjoyed going for a week last year and planned and went this year. Now I have the blues and ready to go back for another week. Which makes it so exciting that we will be able to go in March for a few days.

You see things differently going once you are an adult. It's really funny but you notice alot of things I would say the adults notice more than kids/young adults. Most are interested in just the rides and characters not the scenary or the food or the decorations like you do. I admire you for that!! You have a great eye!

No, we do not have kids but become big kids ourselves at Disney. I love to see how the kids react to characters! Can't wait until my nephew gets old enough we can go with him.

Looking forward to the planning - looking at restuarants now to make ADRs. Hey - which resturant do you recommend? What was your favorite?

So you have been to Disneyland California? That’s lucky! We would love to go there, obviously not just for DL but to see other parts of California. A bit too pricey though!

Fort Wilderness sounds lovely. We were actually going to stay there for our holiday but there was a 45% off deal at SSR. I can imagine how annoying it might have been having beach holidays. I don’t want a beach holiday next year… I want… (wait for it! ) to go to… DISNEY WORLD! Haha, that was predictable, right?!

You and your DH are lucky going when you were young. I had to persuade my parents, and when I say persuade, I mean force! It’s great going for a week, ikr. I can’t imagine having just a day, or a couple of days. We had two weeks and still didn’t have enough time! And you have to take the time to enjoy the resort you’re staying at.
Aww thanks, I take that as a compliment! I love appreciating the atmosphere and décor in Disney. It wouldn’t be Disney without those things! My brothers are only interested in the rides and characters, so I see what you mean about kids and what they like about Disney. Being on the DISboards has made me appreciate Disney more, seeing likeminded people who are in love with WDW. My parents , although they really like Disney, don’t really appreciate or notice all the little things you see in WDW.

I love how adults become big kids at WDW. In the real world, you can’t really act like that unless you’re a kid! I’m sure when you get to go with your nephew it will make you love Disney even more! It is great seeing someone you love enjoy the characters and experiences.
Honestly, how surprising that of all places you could go to with work, you get to go to WDW! You must be so excited! Definitely stay an extra couple of days, the more time, the better!
What restaurants have you eaten at before? We loved Akershus, Chef Mickey’s, Citricos and GFC. Ok, we loved most of them but those were our favourites! Have you tried the Hoop de Doo Revue? It’s great fun!
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$5 A Day Means Disney MY Way! An October TR
~Our 18 day trip to Walt Disney World. Deluxe Dining Plan, Keys to the Kingdom Tour,
MNSSHP, Epcot Food & Wine Festival and MVMCP all in one trip!~



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Old 10-29-2011, 04:05 PM   #127
meggiebeth
Have faith in your dreams and someday your rainbow will come smiling through...
 
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Join Date: Aug 2011
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Our REST DAY! Breakfast at 'Ohana!

Hello there! And welcome back!
Word of warning: I just learnt how to edit photos on Photobucket. So quite a few photos will now be edited!

Breakfast at 'Ohana

So, we were exhausted after EMHs until 2am, and had an ADR at 'Ohana for about 10:00am I think. We headed out and arrived at the Poly- beautiful resort, definately! I felt like I was in Polynesia or Hawaii.

Rory was very excited for this meal; Lilo and Stitch is one of his favourite TV programmes. And Stitch is one of his favourite characters full stop! Anyways...

So, we had a very short wait, surprisingly! We had our photo taken and were given our leis, before sitting down and waiting for our table. Here's my lovely Mommy, sitting down waiting for our table:



So we were called in, and seated.

Willum and Mummy:



First, along came Mickey! He was very friendly and I liked his Hawaiian outfit!



Rory brought his Stitch I had bought him in MK the day before. It was just too cute how much he loved him, and talked to him on the monorail from MK, like he was a person, and cuddling him every 10 seconds. I wish that he was that loving with me!



Okay, a little bit of the food is eaten, but this is what we were served. It is making me hungry!



We were each served one Mickey waffle! This was after my obsession and love for them started at Chef Mickey's, and I was thinking 'meh'. But I got another one, so it didn't really matter that they only gave 1. The nice thing was that they were served fresh, whereas in the buffets, there were lots but they could be just lukewarm. Nothing better than a freshly cooked, piping hot Mickey waffle! I swear they taste better just because they are in the shape of Mickey! Haha!

Rory ensured his Stitch did not leave hungry:



Then, Pluto came along! Me and Rory LOVE Pluto. He's so cute! (Note: Please excuse the fact I'm looking down.)



Okay, then Lilo came around soon after Pluto. PLEASE excuse my horrible face- I didn't know the photo was being taken! Whoopsies!



And then the much anticipated STITCH! YAY! Stitch saw Rory's Stitch and played with him, throwing him up in the air. He was very playful. Oh, I love Stitch, he's so cute!



Our table full of food:



A really kind family offered to take our photo:



William looking happy with a Disney character for a change!



When we left the restaurant, Rory did a Mario pose. (Mario is his favourite character, like, ever, sadly not Disney.)



















Beautiful...



And of course Stitch was included in all the family activities:





That's it for now! Thanks for reading! If any of you are thinking about 'Ohana for breakfast, I would definately reccommend it- especially if you love the tropical atmosphere or Lilo and Stitch.
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Old 10-31-2011, 11:05 PM   #128
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Great update!

Was breakfast at O'Hana a buffet breakfast?

I have been reading your TR while answering the door to Trick or Treaters. Is Halloween as big in England as it is here in the states? So much candy! My husband just told our two daughters that Halloween was actually for the parents and it was the job of the kids to bring us LOTS of candy!
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Old 10-31-2011, 11:10 PM   #129
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Originally Posted by meggiebeth View Post
...another popular cheese here is stilton. Which to me is disgusting. Have you tried it?

...You should try some British recipes, definately! Our dishes don't tend to be sophisticated, but they are tasty! Cottage pie and sheperds pie are delicious.

...LOL about the greek yoghurt! What IS greek yoghurt? My guess would be yoghurt from Greece.

...I would love to time travel back to the Victorian times for a day- that is my favourite era.

Yes, I am very proud of Britain and being from Britain. It has so much history... and was once really powerful, right? It's just recently that we are not as good a country as we used to be, because of the government and political issues, etc. I know America has it's own problems- it was on the news a few weeks ago that the government were being silly about debt or something? I can't remember. Apparently the US was close to being bankrupt. Whenever I say I would rather live in America, people say 'But it's so DANGEROUS! And it hasn't much history, either!' Still, Celebration near WDW would be a great place to live, I remain convinced!

Goodness- how much history do you know? It sounds like as well as American history you know British history, what about European history? I suppose you must know a lot about Asia too! Did you study it in university? I think you know more than my history teacher! Lol. I didn't know that the red uniforms were around before Victoria's reign. I guess it's only fair that Americans want to be called that rather than British. It's all about power... Britain wanted lots of it! Have you been to Italy... Florence... Rome... Pompeii? I have always wanted to go there. Pompeii especially because of those bodies that have just been frozen in their positions by the lava. The one that touched me the most was a photo of a mother clutching her young child, and they were still in that position. On the other side of Mt Vesuvius I believe there was another town... was it Herculanium? There are many buildings there, including an enormous villa, that cannot be escavated (spelling?) because of the risk of collapse. And there are priceless items, like scrolls, trapped in there that aren't retrievable.

... Wasn't there a big problem and lots of segregation in the US in the 1960s?
In relation to slavery, I am interested in WW2, but mainly the holocaust. I find that shocking. Have you seen the movie 'Schindler's List'? It is shocking but a good movie. At least the ending is happy in a way. It is a very long movie, but it tells a story. (And a sad one at that!) I also like the Anne Frank movie, I know it isn't exactly historical, but the end made me cry. I am reading the book at the moment and am nearly at the end. It is scary to me that she died at the age of 15- the same age that I am now!
... if something is really horrific I have nightmares about it.

Thank you for the reccommendations! I already have an atlas but it is more geographic than historical. I shall look in a book shop to see what they have. The 'Record of Time' Timeline Notebook looks really interesting. I really want to buy it. What do you do exactly in it? Is it a timeline or a notebook where you write in details that sort of form a timeline? Anyhow, it looks really interesting. The postage is 'only' $25- not that bad considering it's from America. That's about £17 I think. I paid $50 would you believe for a cardigan and skirt to be sent over.
You certainly make history sound interesting! I have always found it fascinating, but after talking to you about it I have realized how much I enjoy talking about it and learning new things. The other links on the timelines are very interesting too- so thankyou!

...How old are your two girls now?
...I’m sure they don’t get into trouble for being late to ‘school’ or not doing homework. I would like that! Do you have a set timetable like school does, or do you just do whatever comes to mind? And do you get up really early for home school? I’m guessing that homeschooling would take less time than going to school- right? Because your kids get your attention and help a lot easier than at school. I guess you can ‘tailor’ the lessons to your kids, rather than at school when a student just has to ‘like’ the teaching methods or ‘lump it’. I agree about dividing people up by their ages- it creates such a barrier between people of different ages. It sounds stupid, but at my school a year 9 would never be friends with a year 10. And there could be just 1 month between their birthdays.

... So the SATs results weren’t exactly representing how good the school was at teaching- they just essentially trained children to pass the SATs.

Yes about the 4th July-... I would love to just go to a ‘normal’ town or city as long as the display was good. Thanksgiving and Halloween are things I would also love to be in the US for. I have never heard of Stone Mountain in Georgia. Is that a nice place to be on 4th July? It certainly sounds it!

...Wow- you’ve lived in a lot of places! And they’re all quite far away from each other, right?

...I am about 5”. So not tall at all. I hope I haven’t stopped growing, I don’t want to be this small forever! Lol! My mother is 5’5” and my father is quite short… being Scottish. Whenever we go to Scotland I feel at home- people tend to be shorter for some reason! Tell your DD 5’3” is a good height! Better than mine! Your height is good too. I definitely wouldn’t consider 5’3” or above to be ‘short’. Hahaha, I never use the metric system. My parents were raised using the imperial measurements and raised me like that too. I have to use metric measurements at school but as a family we always use inches and feet for height. I do know the US uses mostly imperial, right? We still use miles for the roads… and we weigh babies in pounds and ounces. But everything else we mainly use metric. People my parents’ ages use imperial still though! I suppose you can’t get out of the habit. Lol.

Yay so I may be talking to someone with English blood! Lol. It doesn’t really surprise me, but I love that Americans tend to have European blood in them. St Augustine?! I DESPERATELY wanted to go there when we went to Florida, but my parents weren’t as interested as me and we didn’t have time anyway. My parents are convinced Florida is boring history-wise, but when I found St Augustine I thought it would be a great place to visit. Have you ever been there? If so, did you like it? I am determined to get back to WDW in the next year or 2, and when we go I will make a big effort to get to St Augustine. :
I'm not sure if I have tried Stilton or not, but I did know it was one variety of what we call "bleu cheese", which is something that I am generally not a fan of. A few of the milder ones when used in small amounts in a recipe are good, but most are too strong for me. My DH likes most of them being the fan of strong cheeses that he is.

And I agree that I should try some British recipes. Or I should say, should try some more of them. I've been making shepherd's pie for years and years. I love it. Thanks for the link!

Oh, btw, I found out a shop that has some of the red leicester. Now I just need to drive down there and get some! Yay. I'll check out if they have any marmite while I'm there too.

Greek Yoghurt is essentially yoghurt has been strained for a super long amount of time, so it is quite firm compared to regular yoghurt. I like it being so thick, but I also like what they sell in the grocery stores for being more tart rather than icky sweet. Most yoghurts that we can buy in the grocery store have a ton of sugar added, but I've learned to make my own and learned to like it for its own flavor and not to want so much "added sugar". So now that greek yoghurt is being sold, sometimes I buy that, even though I still make my own yoghurt at times too. I know that probably sounds odd to a lot of people, but I guess I'm a foodie and add to that I keep getting a little more and a little more into healthy eating with each passing year. Everyone's got to have their interests and hobbies, right?

To get to time travel back to an era like that sounds awesome doesn't it? And I have to say the Victorian era sounds like a great pick to me. As much as I'd like to see colonial Jamestowne or go back and help them with "the starving time" can you imagine going back to a time when people thought it was unhealthy to bathe more than twice a year? I'd have to join up with the Indians rather than the colonists; the colonist thought it was just absolutely amazing and crazy that the Powhatans got into the river and bathed twice a day!

Britain was very powerful and I believe it still garners a good bit of respect. I suspect that at some point in the future history will recognize Britain's huge influence over the world and liken it to the Romans and the Greeks. Yep our country is getting into a really bad situation with our national debt. But some people just keep thinking that the government has to pay for so much stuff with no realistic understanding of the connections between the government and the citizenry. I pray it gets reversed before we really do lose our economic power. It would be sad to see all those well meaning people, who want to pay for everything for everybody have to learn the hard way how spoiled we've been here and what it would be like to live in a less affluent nation after running our economy into the ground. That is one of those things that we could pay attention to history to see that it really could happen! It was just... what... just over 50 or 60 years ago that Britain had had the world's currency for so long and then lost it. So people wouldn't have to go that far back in history to study it. But instead most people just think, "that will never happen", if they bother to become informed about the concept of the global currency at all. I'd be surprised if even 20% of Americans know that the U.S dollar has been the global currency since Britain lost it or that other countries have already started dumping U.S. dollars and taking measures to protect themselves from our collapse. Would you believe we let our government vote in a bill to spend 787 billion dollars that it didn't even have in order to "create jobs" accept that it had nothing in it that could realistically be expected to actually do that and that it included spending 3.4 million dollars on building a tunnel for turtles to cross under a road in Florida among many other absurd pork projects. It made my heart ache to think of the waste and corruption involved. As a person who has stopped her car and moved a snapping turtle across a road to keep it from getting smashed, I believe I have a right to be offended. It is ironic too that one of the things the people who push the wrong messages about these things do is they tell people how we are so backward and how the Europeans hate us just like peer pressure among kids and that actually works on adults , but anyway... the ironic part is how many other countries that we have been told we should be more like are now getting upset about the fact that our irresponsibility in supposedly becoming more like them is endangering the global economy. Oh well, I wasn't terribly susceptible to peer pressure on a personal level as a kid either, but I understand why a lot of people are so susceptible to it and at all ages I suppose. About it being dangerous here, it is very easy to do a bit of research and choose where to live to avoid high-crime areas. Just as a person moving to France would not want to move into one of the neighborhoods where their rape statistics have gone through the roof, there are places here that should be avoided too. I looked up Celebration really quickly and it doesn't seem like the crime statistics are too bad there. I'd be willing to go there if that was the only consideration. And heck, I'd want to go too if I could!

To be honest I know a lot more about the parts of history that caught my interest than about the rest. I suppose that is human nature or at least I have a lot of company in my weakness in being that way. I know some Asian history but I don't have nearly a strong enough grasp of it to converse about it much. And I know some French history simply because certain parts of it are fascinating, mainly just about Marie Antoinette (she seems to fascinate a lot of people doesn't she) and then about the French revolution because its like not being able to look away from a train wreck how bad things got there during that period. I'd like to learn a bit more about Napoleon than what I know about him and more about their earlier history. I have some knowledge of ancient history too, but I'd love to learn more of the histories of other European countries.

I would love to go to Italy! And Pompei is very interesting. I agree it is touching.

Yes, there was a big problem with segregation and trying to get past it. Since I was born in 1970 and I wasn't exposed to very much biggotry, its kind of astonishing to me to realize how close the dates are between all that going on and my early memories. I suppose it is like anything else. There were differences between individual experiences as well as the general mood or social climate in various areas. I just recently saw the movie, The Help. That movie did a better job than any other I've seen in helping me to see more of how it really was in certain places where it was bad and to see the human faces on the various types of people. It was truly outstanding.

I also really got into the story of Anne Frank and studied more about WWII. It was an amazing and horrifying chapter in human history. I have not seen Schindler's List and I've always intended to see it "one day" as they say. I almost did one time when I thought I was up for serious drama and my DH said not to. He was afraid it would be too much for me. You are not the only person who is effected by how horrific stuff is. If you get nightmares definitely be careful. It is pretty bad news how much all the atrocities we have stored in our heads can effect us, even years later. I always tell my kids to be careful of how much "yuck" they exposed themselves to in the name of entertainment, because in the long run you can't scrub it out of your head and it all adds up and has an impact. So stories like that which have importance but can be hard to take, I try to be careful of. I have to be in a great place emotionally and not having any leanings towards depression, which I can be prone to. On my short list of movies that are truly great movies that also have that type of importance that I'm glad I saw are things like Amistad and Amazing Grace both of which were phenomenal films.

Your welcome for the recommendations. The 'Record of Time' Timeline Notebook is a notebook formatted to make it easy for you to make your own timeline. So you make the entries yourself after you get it, but it comes with pages with a bold line across the middle and lots of closely spaced lines above and below for your notations. And there are some dates to get you started, which is good. Even though you'll still be writing in the majority of your dates it just helps you get started without being nervous or overwhelmed about how far apart to space things.

There is a two and half year difference between my girls. Gwyneth turned 14 a few days ago and Anneliese is 11. We joke sometimes about getting to go to school in our pajamas. But then again at times I have to be the bad guy and make us all get back on track if we get too lax about getting stuff done. For the most part we are very laid back and I let the girls have influence over things way more than could be logistically possible with going to a traditional school. Liese is a morning person and wakes up before me at times. So I try to encourage her to follow a routine in the mornings and not just take free-time. But I'm not necessarily up as early as she is. Gwyneth is not a morning person and sometimes she sleeps later than is really healthy. Since she can be prone to insomnia I have to be the mom and insist she get up and get going around 7:30 or 8 in the morning if she starts sleeping really late and having trouble getting to sleep at night.

Yes, it does take less time than regular school especially in the earlier grades. And of course that can be effected by a persons powers of focus. Liese is a daydreamer like I was as a kid so that is a challenge. The way we can tailor the teaching methods and the materials to the girls learning styles is a tremendous advantage of homeschooling. Liese really benefits from being allowed to fidget or get up and have a little exercise. She is strong as a kinetic learner. My son and I are both that way too. My son is 20 now to answer your later question.

I've heard of lots of situations here where schools that were not successfully teaching switched to just training for the testing. So sad. Sometimes I think if I wasn't busy teaching my own children I'd like to become a volunteer for other children. Maybe I'll be able to do some of that later in life. I adore reading one on one with a younger child who is just learning it and wants to be read to and to read to the adult in turn.

So for the fourth of July you would probably love to come here to Ohio. There is a town not too far from me called Dublin, Ohio where they have a nice 4th of July celebration every year with a concert and fireworks. You would enjoy Stone Mountain just as much. There is a town called Stone Mountain there, but there is also the actual mountain and a state park surrounding it. It is a great place.

http://www.stonemountainpark.com/

They have a show there every night all summer long which is great to see anyway. And on the fourth they add fireworks on at the end.

I was born in VA and where we lived there was a three hour drive from where my Mom had grown up in Maryland. At one point later I lived in that area in Maryland for a bit. But the other places were much longer drives apart. Still for all the places I've lived, I've still always been in the eastern states, all coastal states accept here in Ohio.

hehe. I'm glad you use imperial for heights. Silly of me probably but it is what I'm used to. Yeah, Americans tend to use imperial for everything. Although sometimes people run into metric at work if it is being influenced by products or information from other countries. I can see how helpful metric could be but it is just so hard to grasp the real meaning of the measurements when you aren't used to them. Like with height I immediately know exactly what 5' and 5'5" looks like where if you had said it in metric, I'd have had to convert it to have any clue how tall you are.

I have been to St. Augustine. But just for a day and it was a really long time ago. I remember I enjoyed it and was glad to see it, but I do not remember a lot of details. I was more focused on socializing that day, I think.

Maybe if the rest of your family is not as into Disney as you they will let you plan them a trip to tour across a few other places and you could get a couple of Disney days in at the beginning or the end?

Are your parents foodies? Do they read a lot? Do they like history? sports? art? Think of their hobbies and you may be able come up with places they would enjoy. Even if you just incorporate one other state besides Florida. You could think of all the stuff in Atlanta. There is a great Aquarium, a zoo, a professional baseball team, tons of restaurants, underground Atlanta, world of coca-cola, lots of shopping opportunities, and the list goes on for miles. Or north of Atlanta you could camp in the mountains, or stay in a mountain cabin. Oh and Atlanta is so close to Stone Mountain and there is a hotel right in Stone Mountain Park! Then there is Savannah GA if they would like to stay by the Ocean. Might be fun to take a trip with at least one day devoted to each family member and that person's interests.

In my book, even if it is just all dreaming, the trip planning is a blast.
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Old 11-03-2011, 03:33 PM   #130
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Just popping in to checking on any updates. Hope you are having a great week! Turning cold here in North Carolina. Got down to 32degrees last night - BURR!!!! How's your weather?
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Old 11-03-2011, 04:08 PM   #131
meggiebeth
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Quote:
Originally Posted by WDWRids View Post
Just popping in to checking on any updates. Hope you are having a great week! Turning cold here in North Carolina. Got down to 32degrees last night - BURR!!!! How's your weather?
Goodness- I didn't know it was that cold in North Carolina! I have heard there is a lot of snow in some places on the East coast though. Our weather is surprisingly hit and miss here. Yesterday it was 40 degrees, but today it is warmer. It gets really chilly at night though... I'm missing summer!

Quote:
Originally Posted by TheThomsLuvDisney View Post
Great update!

Was breakfast at O'Hana a buffet breakfast?

I have been reading your TR while answering the door to Trick or Treaters. Is Halloween as big in England as it is here in the states? So much candy! My husband just told our two daughters that Halloween was actually for the parents and it was the job of the kids to bring us LOTS of candy!
Hello there! No... 'Ohana wasn't. I think it was what you call 'family style'. They brought out a big platter with food on... and we each had a little. And then they brought out the Mickey waffles seperately. What would I do for one of them right now? You don't get waffles like that here often, and especially not in a Mickey shape!

Hope you had a great Halloween! Mmmm candy! We call candy 'sweets', lol. I like the word candy better though!
Halloween isn't very big here, not as big as the US anyway! Me and my brother went trick or treating and most people were not celebrating it or giving out sweets. Some trick or treaters can do things like throwing eggs and pulling pranks on the people that don't give them anything- so the police got involved and anyone that doesn't want to have trick or treaters at their house puts up a sign made by the police. Is it as bad as that in America? Of course the shops and supermarkets have lots of Halloween costumes and pumpkins, etc, but that's just to make money!

Nice trick with your kids! I'm just guessing they didn't buy it and ate the candy all by themselves? If so... they are like my brother. He told me the opposite- that little children should get more candy than big children and adults. And forced me to hand over my candy.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fromscratchmom View Post
I'm not sure if I have tried Stilton or not, but I did know it was one variety of what we call "bleu cheese", which is something that I am generally not a fan of. A few of the milder ones when used in small amounts in a recipe are good, but most are too strong for me. My DH likes most of them being the fan of strong cheeses that he is.

And I agree that I should try some British recipes. Or I should say, should try some more of them. I've been making shepherd's pie for years and years. I love it. Thanks for the link!

Oh, btw, I found out a shop that has some of the red leicester. Now I just need to drive down there and get some! Yay. I'll check out if they have any marmite while I'm there too.

Greek Yoghurt is essentially yoghurt has been strained for a super long amount of time, so it is quite firm compared to regular yoghurt. I like it being so thick, but I also like what they sell in the grocery stores for being more tart rather than icky sweet. Most yoghurts that we can buy in the grocery store have a ton of sugar added, but I've learned to make my own and learned to like it for its own flavor and not to want so much "added sugar". So now that greek yoghurt is being sold, sometimes I buy that, even though I still make my own yoghurt at times too. I know that probably sounds odd to a lot of people, but I guess I'm a foodie and add to that I keep getting a little more and a little more into healthy eating with each passing year. Everyone's got to have their interests and hobbies, right?

To get to time travel back to an era like that sounds awesome doesn't it? And I have to say the Victorian era sounds like a great pick to me. As much as I'd like to see colonial Jamestowne or go back and help them with "the starving time" can you imagine going back to a time when people thought it was unhealthy to bathe more than twice a year? I'd have to join up with the Indians rather than the colonists; the colonist thought it was just absolutely amazing and crazy that the Powhatans got into the river and bathed twice a day!

Britain was very powerful and I believe it still garners a good bit of respect. I suspect that at some point in the future history will recognize Britain's huge influence over the world and liken it to the Romans and the Greeks. Yep our country is getting into a really bad situation with our national debt. But some people just keep thinking that the government has to pay for so much stuff with no realistic understanding of the connections between the government and the citizenry. I pray it gets reversed before we really do lose our economic power. It would be sad to see all those well meaning people, who want to pay for everything for everybody have to learn the hard way how spoiled we've been here and what it would be like to live in a less affluent nation after running our economy into the ground. That is one of those things that we could pay attention to history to see that it really could happen! It was just... what... just over 50 or 60 years ago that Britain had had the world's currency for so long and then lost it. So people wouldn't have to go that far back in history to study it. But instead most people just think, "that will never happen", if they bother to become informed about the concept of the global currency at all. I'd be surprised if even 20% of Americans know that the U.S dollar has been the global currency since Britain lost it or that other countries have already started dumping U.S. dollars and taking measures to protect themselves from our collapse. Would you believe we let our government vote in a bill to spend 787 billion dollars that it didn't even have in order to "create jobs" accept that it had nothing in it that could realistically be expected to actually do that and that it included spending 3.4 million dollars on building a tunnel for turtles to cross under a road in Florida among many other absurd pork projects. It made my heart ache to think of the waste and corruption involved. As a person who has stopped her car and moved a snapping turtle across a road to keep it from getting smashed, I believe I have a right to be offended. It is ironic too that one of the things the people who push the wrong messages about these things do is they tell people how we are so backward and how the Europeans hate us just like peer pressure among kids and that actually works on adults, but anyway... the ironic part is how many other countries that we have been told we should be more like are now getting upset about the fact that our irresponsibility in supposedly becoming more like them is endangering the global economy. Oh well, I wasn't terribly susceptible to peer pressure on a personal level as a kid either, but I understand why a lot of people are so susceptible to it and at all ages I suppose. About it being dangerous here, it is very easy to do a bit of research and choose where to live to avoid high-crime areas. Just as a person moving to France would not want to move into one of the neighborhoods where their rape statistics have gone through the roof, there are places here that should be avoided too. I looked up Celebration really quickly and it doesn't seem like the crime statistics are too bad there. I'd be willing to go there if that was the only consideration. And heck, I'd want to go too if I could!

To be honest I know a lot more about the parts of history that caught my interest than about the rest. I suppose that is human nature or at least I have a lot of company in my weakness in being that way. I know some Asian history but I don't have nearly a strong enough grasp of it to converse about it much. And I know some French history simply because certain parts of it are fascinating, mainly just about Marie Antoinette (she seems to fascinate a lot of people doesn't she) and then about the French revolution because its like not being able to look away from a train wreck how bad things got there during that period. I'd like to learn a bit more about Napoleon than what I know about him and more about their earlier history. I have some knowledge of ancient history too, but I'd love to learn more of the histories of other European countries.

I would love to go to Italy! And Pompei is very interesting. I agree it is touching.

Yes, there was a big problem with segregation and trying to get past it. Since I was born in 1970 and I wasn't exposed to very much biggotry, its kind of astonishing to me to realize how close the dates are between all that going on and my early memories. I suppose it is like anything else. There were differences between individual experiences as well as the general mood or social climate in various areas. I just recently saw the movie, The Help. That movie did a better job than any other I've seen in helping me to see more of how it really was in certain places where it was bad and to see the human faces on the various types of people. It was truly outstanding.

I also really got into the story of Anne Frank and studied more about WWII. It was an amazing and horrifying chapter in human history. I have not seen Schindler's List and I've always intended to see it "one day" as they say. I almost did one time when I thought I was up for serious drama and my DH said not to. He was afraid it would be too much for me. You are not the only person who is effected by how horrific stuff is. If you get nightmares definitely be careful. It is pretty bad news how much all the atrocities we have stored in our heads can effect us, even years later. I always tell my kids to be careful of how much "yuck" they exposed themselves to in the name of entertainment, because in the long run you can't scrub it out of your head and it all adds up and has an impact. So stories like that which have importance but can be hard to take, I try to be careful of. I have to be in a great place emotionally and not having any leanings towards depression, which I can be prone to. On my short list of movies that are truly great movies that also have that type of importance that I'm glad I saw are things like Amistad and Amazing Grace both of which were phenomenal films.

Your welcome for the recommendations. The 'Record of Time' Timeline Notebook is a notebook formatted to make it easy for you to make your own timeline. So you make the entries yourself after you get it, but it comes with pages with a bold line across the middle and lots of closely spaced lines above and below for your notations. And there are some dates to get you started, which is good. Even though you'll still be writing in the majority of your dates it just helps you get started without being nervous or overwhelmed about how far apart to space things.

There is a two and half year difference between my girls. Gwyneth turned 14 a few days ago and Anneliese is 11. We joke sometimes about getting to go to school in our pajamas. But then again at times I have to be the bad guy and make us all get back on track if we get too lax about getting stuff done. For the most part we are very laid back and I let the girls have influence over things way more than could be logistically possible with going to a traditional school. Liese is a morning person and wakes up before me at times. So I try to encourage her to follow a routine in the mornings and not just take free-time. But I'm not necessarily up as early as she is. Gwyneth is not a morning person and sometimes she sleeps later than is really healthy. Since she can be prone to insomnia I have to be the mom and insist she get up and get going around 7:30 or 8 in the morning if she starts sleeping really late and having trouble getting to sleep at night.

Yes, it does take less time than regular school especially in the earlier grades. And of course that can be effected by a persons powers of focus. Liese is a daydreamer like I was as a kid so that is a challenge. The way we can tailor the teaching methods and the materials to the girls learning styles is a tremendous advantage of homeschooling. Liese really benefits from being allowed to fidget or get up and have a little exercise. She is strong as a kinetic learner. My son and I are both that way too. My son is 20 now to answer your later question.

I've heard of lots of situations here where schools that were not successfully teaching switched to just training for the testing. So sad. Sometimes I think if I wasn't busy teaching my own children I'd like to become a volunteer for other children. Maybe I'll be able to do some of that later in life. I adore reading one on one with a younger child who is just learning it and wants to be read to and to read to the adult in turn.

So for the fourth of July you would probably love to come here to Ohio. There is a town not too far from me called Dublin, Ohio where they have a nice 4th of July celebration every year with a concert and fireworks. You would enjoy Stone Mountain just as much. There is a town called Stone Mountain there, but there is also the actual mountain and a state park surrounding it. It is a great place.

http://www.stonemountainpark.com/

They have a show there every night all summer long which is great to see anyway. And on the fourth they add fireworks on at the end.

I was born in VA and where we lived there was a three hour drive from where my Mom had grown up in Maryland. At one point later I lived in that area in Maryland for a bit. But the other places were much longer drives apart. Still for all the places I've lived, I've still always been in the eastern states, all coastal states accept here in Ohio.

hehe. I'm glad you use imperial for heights. Silly of me probably but it is what I'm used to. Yeah, Americans tend to use imperial for everything. Although sometimes people run into metric at work if it is being influenced by products or information from other countries. I can see how helpful metric could be but it is just so hard to grasp the real meaning of the measurements when you aren't used to them. Like with height I immediately know exactly what 5' and 5'5" looks like where if you had said it in metric, I'd have had to convert it to have any clue how tall you are.

I have been to St. Augustine. But just for a day and it was a really long time ago. I remember I enjoyed it and was glad to see it, but I do not remember a lot of details. I was more focused on socializing that day, I think.

Maybe if the rest of your family is not as into Disney as you they will let you plan them a trip to tour across a few other places and you could get a couple of Disney days in at the beginning or the end?

Are your parents foodies? Do they read a lot? Do they like history? sports? art? Think of their hobbies and you may be able come up with places they would enjoy. Even if you just incorporate one other state besides Florida. You could think of all the stuff in Atlanta. There is a great Aquarium, a zoo, a professional baseball team, tons of restaurants, underground Atlanta, world of coca-cola, lots of shopping opportunities, and the list goes on for miles. Or north of Atlanta you could camp in the mountains, or stay in a mountain cabin. Oh and Atlanta is so close to Stone Mountain and there is a hotel right in Stone Mountain Park! Then there is Savannah GA if they would like to stay by the Ocean. Might be fun to take a trip with at least one day devoted to each family member and that person's interests.

In my book, even if it is just all dreaming, the trip planning is a blast.
I'm guessing you won't like stilton then! It is very strong. I have heard of bleu cheese and stilton being linked together, so they probably are very similar. You'll have to get your DH to try some!

You've tried sheperds pie? Is that famous in America or is it just you that cooks it? Lol. It is nice... I always liked it when I ate meat. It's really irritating- I love the smell and taste of meat but I hate eating it knowing that it is... well... meat. Lol. I am not too sure about the difference between sheperds pie and cottage pie, but they are really similar. One American dish I have heard of is 'meatloaf'. It doesn't look too nice but it must be for so many people to like it! By the way, does quorn exist in America? I tried tofu for the first time and literally choked. This was actually in 'Ohana. It is absolutely disgusting. In the Rose and Crown pub I ordered the vegetarian sheperds pie, which tasted nothing like sheperds pie! I think it was mainly mushrooms, carrots, peas, etc. I was expecting it to be mainly quorn, but... lol.

Yay- you've found red leicester! It's rather similar to cheddar- and not very strong at all. When I was in primary school I used to take in sandwiches with red leicester cheese and marmite. I am can not handle strong cheeses either... lol. I tried the goats cheese flatbread in California Grill and it was WAY too strong. So cheddar and red leicester are as far as I go! Do try marmite if you get hold of it in the shop- but spread it on very thinly... or you may choke when you eat it!

What a great idea! Yoghurt making! It sounds like fun. And anything (unless the baker is really awful) homemade generally tastes better than shop bought foods... and they are a lot fresher! I'm sure your DH and girls appreciate all this cooking that you do for them!

In relation to cooking, do you teach your girls 'food tech' or similar? I had that up until last year when we went into a big kitchen and had to bake pointless things, and had only 40 minutes to do everything, including actually cooking them! I love baking and cooking at home, but at school it isn't as fun. I'm guessing you only teach the main subjects, and not things like food tech, drama, design and technology. They sound pretty hard to do in homeschooling.

I'm not sure I'd like to be with the Indians- weren't they really violent sometimes? And some of the rituals they did were pretty gruesome. I'm not sure I would want to be involved in any! Hehe. What is colonial Jamestown and 'the starving time'? I have heard of Jamestown but not the latter and I have no idea what they are about! Lol.

That's bad with America's debt. I didn't think America would get that badly into debt... it is one of the most powerful countries in the world and I thought would have a fairly good income too. I assume that 'congress' is like your government, or parliment or something, but it was on the news a lot not too long ago, with Americans saying they were embarrased because polititians were bickering like children about agreeing a new limit for the amount they could borrow from the banks. It would be sad to see America be in the same position as Greece... who are in a very bad financial situation at the moment. There's riots, protests... and not enough jobs.

In the UK we have the same problem... debt. But since our new government, BIG spending cuts have been made and lots of people are suffering because of it. Lots of services are being lost, libraries closed, important facilites let go. Although I have heard Americans think the NHS (National Health Service) is a dream come true because it is free... it really isn't. I had to wait 2 or 3 months for an appointment. And there aren't enough staff anyway, let loads of them are getting made redundant! I guess there just isn't enough money. Lots of people working for the public sector are being told to work longer hours and recieve a lower pension and salary increase. It isn't really fair.

I had no idea that the US$ was the global currency. Still, I guess it is one of the biggest and most powerful countries in the world. I still haven't gotten the hang of American currency. Quarter, dime,... all so confusing! Okay, a quarter is 25 cents, I'm guessing. But the coins are confusing for my little mind! Lol.

A tunnel for turtles crossing the road?! That is silly! You think about what else that money could have bought... and they spend it so carelessly on something for turtles. It does make me laugh. It's like that here too, pointless projects, wasted money, etc. European countries don't really hate America, although there is a little dislike. I think America has a reputation here for being powerful (almost too powerful) and for pushing into things. I think everyone does have respect for the US, and it has done many good things, which we are aware of.

Yes, some parts of America must be safe. I am just scared about the guns- but I'm sure people exaggerate when they say that women casually carry them around in their handbangs. Celebration looks lovely, of course I want to go- I'm fairly sure my parents don't though. Lol.

I have never heard of Marie Antoinette- but if you say it's fascinating it probably is! We used to go to France every summer when I was younger and it's a beautiful country. We visited lots of 'chateaux' in France, as they are called, and the stories are fascinating. One man had built a chateau, only for his wife to want it in a different place, so he knocked the whole thing down and rebuilt it a mile down the road!

Segregation did look bad, and it only ended a few decades ago in the US, right? It must have been hard. I don't understand why it lasted so much longer in America than the UK, but it still puzzles me!

WW2 is fascinating... Anne Frank and all that. You should try watching Schindler's List- I found it shocking but not TOO shocking and it was a touching story. Especially the end. It has people being shot and beaten, but if I can cope with it, you probably can. The end is sad but happy in a way. The thing that shocked me more than the violence was how cheap life seemed when people were shot for no reason at all. I know what you mean about being careful about what films you watch. Have you seen 'Slumdog Millionaire'? It isn't historical but it horrified me, and 20 minutes in I turned the TV off. I had nightmares for weeks. The bad things you see in some movies don't seem to escape your mind for a long time.

That timeline book sounds great. I'm going to put it on my Christmas list... and hopefully I will get it. I'm completely bankrupt at the moment, so either I earn more money or wait until Christmas!

Oh, what beautiful names! They are lovely! I especially like the name Anneliese. They're very pretty, and not like normal names like Megan, Lucy, Lily, Phoebe, etc. If I went to school at home in my pyjamas I would probably fall asleep at the table. Lol. It sounds like you enjoy homeschooling your kids and don't have a hard time with keeping on track with the work. I can't imagine waking up early on purpose... I am like Gwyneth. If I sleep in too late, then I can't get to sleep for a long time. Lying in is so tempting and nice. My parents are like you, they get me out of bed early so I can go to sleep at a fairly reasonable time at night!

I'm not surprised that it takes less time than regular school. I think about how much time of each lesson is wasted because of how many kids there are in the class. It just takes more time. I wish they let us get up and walk around at school, like you do with Liese. It just shows how homeschooling can bring so much more out of someone. And tailoring the teaching methods to a particular person sounds just as you put it- a tremendous advantage! You must bring so much more out of your kids. They are lucky to have a mother and teacher as dedicated as you! Goodness, your son is 20? Well, I take it you don't homeschool him anymore then! It must have been so nice to have helped him in the way that you did.

Being a volunteer would be great! And you'll probably make a difference in some kid's life that couldn't afford private tutoring or homeschooling. It's great reading with a young child- I agree! You’d make a great homeschool teacher! It’s very rewarding contributing to children’s educations too.
Ohio sounds lovely. It is one of the states I have heard of, and I have heard many good things about it! If we get to the US for 4th July I will probably come to Ohio or somewhere like it. It is apparently very beautiful. Travelling is just lovely… I would love to travel more. Thanks for the link! Stone Mountain looks awesome- in fact it really appeals to our family. Lots of things to do there certainly! I looked on the website and at the hotels there and they look really tempting. I’ll show my family and see what they think. Of course, it would involve some ‘waiting’ seeing as any holiday in the US is expensive for us!

It’s good you’re quite close to some of the places that you’ve lived in. Is Ohio not coastal? I didn’t realize until recently that some Americans might not even have seen the sea- most likely those living in the middle of America. In the UK, you’re never more than 2 hours literally away from the sea. But I have just noticed America is not like that!

Metric is very easy for me. I find inches and feet confusing. Lol. 10 mm is 1cm, 100cm is 1metre, 1000metres are 1km. I know that there are something like 12 inches in a foot, but not much more than that! Lol. I’m like you, if someone told me their height in metric, I would be like ‘Huh? Can you give that to me in feet?’ Of course we use grams and kilograms here, sometimes ounces, but the one US measurement I don’t get is ‘cups’. When I try to convert American recipes, I always get too confused with the ‘cups’.

Yes, I was thinking about reducing the Disney holiday time and adding on some time in other parts of America. It all comes down to money- I am doing my best to save up for another holiday to the US, I am absolutely desperate go back! I love to travel, and I hate staying in the same village day after day, dreaming of travelling. We don’t go for weekend breaks or short holidays- our summer holiday is the only one we take. So it is important that we have spent the money well. And… a holiday to the US is money well spent!
Atlanta sounds great! I will look up that too and get some research done. It all depends on how expensive it is- and so the closer to Florida the better. My parents didn’t like Florida itself at all- only Disney. So Ohio or another east coast state would definitely be something I want to do. Atlanta is a possible option- and the cabins and camping sound great! Do you visit Atlanta much? Do you really like it? I went on Google Images and the photos of it look wonderful to me- just what America is like with all the big skyscrapers. I saw none of that in Florida. And Atlanta is quite close to Florida! Thanks for the idea! Good idea too about how each family member gets a day to do what they want. That will go down well with William. On most holidays we have been on he is a total killjoy, being negative about wherever we go!

I agree… travelling and the planning is wonderful. It is one of my favourite things at the moment. Especially when you go to places you could only dream of visiting. Going to Florida was the first time I’d ever set foot on another continent. I’m guessing you adore planning trips and of course taking them too! It’s great talking to people like that. My family hates the planning, and me nagging them about it. So for the most part, I plan, find the best hotel and the cheapest rates. And it is surprisingly fun!
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$5 A Day Means Disney MY Way! An October TR
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Old 11-03-2011, 04:30 PM   #132
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Welcome back! So, after our lovely breakfast at 'Ohana, we headed over to

Typhoon Lagoon!









It was very busy and we couldn't find any sunbeds. So we had to make to with chairs. My dad sat and read but the rest of us hit the wave pool! Which was awesome, but the waves were really intimidating. Rory was a little scared of it, and I was wary of cutting myself on the rough floor, so I didn't go in too deep. William swam in very far though, and went right under the waves as they came.



Some more photos:











Unfortunately, after a few hours in the intense heat, we needed to go back to SSR and rest before dinner at Citricos. Being out in the heat for that long really is exhausting. William was fairly sunburnt too... and in pain. The pain didn't set in until we had left TL though...





Time to go! Thanks for reading! Be sure to look out for my next update- our meal at Citricos!
Hope you liked the update!
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$5 A Day Means Disney MY Way! An October TR
~Our 18 day trip to Walt Disney World. Deluxe Dining Plan, Keys to the Kingdom Tour,
MNSSHP, Epcot Food & Wine Festival and MVMCP all in one trip!~



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Old 11-04-2011, 12:53 PM   #133
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Quote:
Originally Posted by meggiebeth View Post
...You've tried sheperds pie? Is that famous in America or is it just you that cooks it? Lol. It is nice... I always liked it when I ate meat. It's really irritating- I love the smell and taste of meat but I hate eating it knowing that it is... well... meat. Lol. I am not too sure about the difference between sheperds pie and cottage pie, but they are really similar. One American dish I have heard of is 'meatloaf'. It doesn't look too nice but it must be for so many people to like it! By the way, does quorn exist in America? I tried tofu for the first time and literally choked. This was actually in 'Ohana. It is absolutely disgusting. In the Rose and Crown pub I ordered the vegetarian sheperds pie, which tasted nothing like sheperds pie! I think it was mainly mushrooms, carrots, peas, etc. I was expecting it to be mainly quorn, but... lol.

...In relation to cooking, do you teach your girls 'food tech' or similar? ... I love baking and cooking at home, but at school it isn't as fun. I'm guessing you only teach the main subjects, and not things like food tech, drama, design and technology. They sound pretty hard to do in homeschooling.

I'm not sure I'd like to be with the Indians- weren't they really violent sometimes? And some of the rituals they did were pretty gruesome. I'm not sure I would want to be involved in any! Hehe. What is colonial Jamestown and 'the starving time'? I have heard of Jamestown but not the latter and I have no idea what they are about! Lol.

That's bad with America's debt. I didn't think America would get that badly into debt... it is one of the most powerful countries in the world and I thought would have a fairly good income too. I assume that 'congress' is like your government, or parliment or something, but it was on the news a lot not too long ago, with Americans saying they were embarrased because polititians were bickering like children about agreeing a new limit for the amount they could borrow from the banks. It would be sad to see America be in the same position as Greece... who are in a very bad financial situation at the moment. There's riots, protests... and not enough jobs.

In the UK we have the same problem... debt. But since our new government, BIG spending cuts have been made and lots of people are suffering because of it. Lots of services are being lost, libraries closed, important facilities let go. Although I have heard Americans think the NHS (National Health Service) is a dream come true because it is free... it really isn't. I had to wait 2 or 3 months for an appointment. And there aren't enough staff anyway, let loads of them are getting made redundant! I guess there just isn't enough money. Lots of people working for the public sector are being told to work longer hours and recieve a lower pension and salary increase. It isn't really fair.

I had no idea that the US$ was the global currency. Still, I guess it is one of the biggest and most powerful countries in the world. I still haven't gotten the hang of American currency. Quarter, dime,... all so confusing! Okay, a quarter is 25 cents, I'm guessing. But the coins are confusing for my little mind! Lol.

...I have never heard of Marie Antoinette- but if you say it's fascinating it probably is! We used to go to France every summer when I was younger and it's a beautiful country. We visited lots of 'chateaux' in France, as they are called, and the stories are fascinating. One man had built a chateau, only for his wife to want it in a different place, so he knocked the whole thing down and rebuilt it a mile down the road!

Segregation did look bad, and it only ended a few decades ago in the US, right? It must have been hard. I don't understand why it lasted so much longer in America than the UK, but it still puzzles me!

...Oh, what beautiful names! They are lovely! I especially like the name Anneliese. They're very pretty, and not like normal names like Megan, Lucy, Lily, Phoebe, etc.

Ohio sounds lovely. It is one of the states I have heard of, and I have heard many good things about it! If we get to the US for 4th July I will probably come to Ohio or somewhere like it. It is apparently very beautiful. Travelling is just lovely… I would love to travel more. Thanks for the link! Stone Mountain looks awesome- in fact it really appeals to our family. Lots of things to do there certainly! I looked on the website and at the hotels there and they look really tempting. I’ll show my family and see what they think. Of course, it would involve some ‘waiting’ seeing as any holiday in the US is expensive for us!

It’s good you’re quite close to some of the places that you’ve lived in. Is Ohio not coastal? I didn’t realize until recently that some Americans might not even have seen the sea- most likely those living in the middle of America. In the UK, you’re never more than 2 hours literally away from the sea. But I have just noticed America is not like that!

Metric is very easy for me. I find inches and feet confusing. Lol. 10 mm is 1cm, 100cm is 1metre, 1000metres are 1km. I know that there are something like 12 inches in a foot, but not much more than that! Lol. I’m like you, if someone told me their height in metric, I would be like ‘Huh? Can you give that to me in feet?’ Of course we use grams and kilograms here, sometimes ounces, but the one US measurement I don’t get is ‘cups’. When I try to convert American recipes, I always get too confused with the ‘cups’.

...I agree… travelling and the planning is wonderful. It is one of my favourite things at the moment. Especially when you go to places you could only dream of visiting. Going to Florida was the first time I’d ever set foot on another continent. I’m guessing you adore planning trips and of course taking them too! It’s great talking to people like that. My family hates the planning, and me nagging them about it. So for the most part, I plan, find the best hotel and the cheapest rates. And it is surprisingly fun!
I don't think very many people here cook shepherd's pie, but I can't be the only one. I got it from an American cookbook when I was only about 20 years old, the first time I cooked it. I should get on the Jamie Oliver website and ask on the forums about the difference between cottage pie and shepherd's pie. All those foodies on there will be sure to have something to say about that.

I don't usually like American meatloaf even though I do like meat. I used to have a recipe that made a good one, but I found out that one of the pre-packaged ingredients that I used in it contained msg, so I stopped making it. I have found that I can improve most meatloaf recipes a little by making certain changes to them based on some of the force meats found in French cooking. But it hardly seems worth it since no one in my house was really into meatloaf to begin with.

I've heard of quorn and seen it, several years ago. You might have to go somewhere other than a regular grocery store to get it here. We have lots of little stores that people call "health food stores" that tend to sell more things like vitamin supplements, organic foods, gluten-free foods, and more foods especially for vegetarians than most of the large chain grocery stores. I might of even tried quorn back then but I couldn't eat it now since now I know about gluten and that it contributes to the health problems that I've had. That is sort of the barrier for me to vegetarianism. So it is a good thing that meat doesn't bother me. With all my food allergies, I'd almost starve. I know quite a few vegetarians through my food coop and the majority of them rely pretty heavily on foods that I avoid. I guess even without my food allergies and my gluten problem, I would still not eat a lot those "substitute" foods though because I've been trying to move my family towards a more whole foods diet, believing that (for the most part) the less processed foods are the more likely they are to be truly nourishing and not have any "side effects" or cause any new food allergies to develop. Although right now I'm doing a juice fast so I am sort of temporarily a vegan. Do you like just eating veggies? I don't mean being a vegetarian, I mean did you like your veggies before that and everything... like just a side of a simply cooked vegetable? I've always been a veggie eater and I still am. Yesterday, I cheated on my juice fast and ate a salad at lunch and a bunch of steamed broccoli and cauliflower at dinner. But that's OK. It's not about doing it perfectly. It is just about giving my body a big boost of the micro-nutrients that come in fresh fruits and vegetables.

I have been teaching the girls to cook since they were very small. (And my son knows how to cook too.) We have a class here in schools, well we had it when I was younger, called home-economics, which taught what I would guess British schools must teach in food-tech. And I'm definitely getting my kids to know much more than that in our home kitchen. I couldn't teach them certain "extra" subjects simply because they might be things I don't know. A lot of American homeschoolers get around that by participating in homeschooling coops where each parent teaches a class to the kids in the coop for one afternoon a week or some similar schedule; with all the parents in a large group together they can cover lots of different subjects. Some do it by enrolling in classes part time and some do it by buying a curriculum and the parents and children learning it together. My husband is teaching my girls some advanced computer stuff. My children and I all do Spanish together through a computer curriculum and I hope some day to enroll us in a group thing to get to practice it and maybe do some travel in Spanish speaking countries. My mom taught my daughters to knit before she passed away. My son was interested in wood-working and after he finished up high-school, I got him an apprenticeship with a cabinet maker to learn some of that. So... almost all things are do-able one way or another.

It's true, the Indians were pretty bad in certain ways and I wouldn't actually be able to be a part of that society. We Americans tend to forget about the gruesome parts and the other bad things since the American Indians are always being painted with a "politically correct" brush, where we pretend that they were perfect and Europeans were evil. There are all sorts of lies taught in schools about how perfect their culture was supposed to be and how we purposefully set out to commit genocide. It drives me batty. Wonderful true stories like the story of Pocahontas are hardly taught anymore and then people only know the fake versions. And the truth of there having been a far larger and more cohesive society of Indians hundreds of years before "white men" came to this land but having mostly self-destructed and broken up into smaller tribal cultures gets pushed aside too. Not to mention the "starving time" which effected the colonists and the Indians alike, but you would almost have to actually go to Jamestown, Virginia to learn about it.

The original Virginia Company colonists that founded Jamestown had a really rough time. They had landed on an Island in the James River where there was no fresh water and they didn't bring any farmers with them or try to grow their own food at all. Unlike the Disney version of what happened there, they came with orders from their parent company to do this and to only trade with the Indians for food so that they wouldn't be too threatening to the Indians. They were looking for profit but not looking to settle down permanently and take over from the Indians. But as it happens that was a very bad decision. And sadly, they had landed in the new world during a very bad drought that lasted for many years. What the histories refer to as "the starving time" came at the end of that several years when many more colonists died than survived, which had been true throughout the drought years anyway but even much more so around 1609-1610. There are just awful personal accounts that you can read of it, of the people eating rats and snakes and their pet dogs and mostly dying anyway. They even ate all of their shoe leather. And that late in those drought years the Indians didn't have any food to trade to them anyway. Since at one point one of the people in charge had made the bad decision to "teach the Indians a lesson" for not trading they got to be on very bad terms with the local Indians and couldn't safely leave their fort to hunt or anything. But, as I mentioned they didn't even have any farmers there. And apparently the people who were there were ignorant of the type of information they would have needed to see the drought for what it was and realize how it was effecting the Indians. Being on a river you might think they would have fished and they did. The year that the histories refer to as "the starving time" is also the year that the lower level of water in the river and its increased salinity had made it so that there were hardly any fish to be caught.
Although it is a shame that schools never teach it, while they are busy pretending that the downfall of the Indians was completely caused by "white men" with no other factors, I think it is good to know more of the truth. Before that several years drought there were over 17,000 Powatans in what is now called Virginia. After that there were only about 2,000. They know a lot more about the drought and its effects now than ever before. The Indians didn't keep written records. And the white men at Jamestown didn't understand it. But now through what few records there are, through archeology and most of all through the study of tree rings they can see what really happened to add up to it truly being a time when there just was no food to be had.

I don't know if I mentioned before about the souvenirs I bought after our day at Jamestown. I bought two books, but I also bought myself a sweatshirt/hoodie that says "Jamestown 1607 when survival wasn't a game." (We have an American television show called "Survivor" where people compete against each other that involves survival skills, but I wasn't sure if it was ever seen in Britian.)

Yes, congress is similar to parliament. And they do bicker all the time. There was always that going on in congress and in parliament too. And the press tends to make a big thing about the arguments or discussions that go on when they want to make the politicians look bad. lol. Also, I think it looks worse to people now than ever before. Mostly they appear as though they are worse to us now because the things that leaders and politicians argue about are the things that divide us all and they are the things we care about right now. But it is also partly due to the nature of the issues being different than they were in the past. But you know, people always either ignore politics or are passionate about it, really believing in what they want to see happen. Also, it is one thing to be setting up a new government after a revolution and to disagree about the finer points within it such as how much power to give the state governments vs. the federal government. It is quite another to be over 200 years down the road and disagree about if the entire nature of the type of government and economy that got set up was a good foundation or if that needs to be changed into something entirely different. We used to be a laissez-faire capitalist republic but we have moved pretty far down the road to a very regulated economy that is something in between a true capitalist economy and a socialist economy and we are still sort of a republic but the foundations of why it used to work so well here have been altered over time and there are now some fairly large problems that override the principals that made it great. So people argue bitterly over that shift and whether to fix it or to embrace it and move over to socialism. Sadly you rarely hear anyone present any alternatives to the corruptions that have been the bane of past and present socialist and communist economies, they just gloss over them, pretend they don't exist. Even in my state, in less than a week, we have a big election coming up where there have been all sorts of things said from both sides to gloss over the underlying corruptions that brought the issue up to begin with. The irony for me is that I would not back any particular form of government based on it being morally superior which most backers on both sides seem to believe about what they are backing. I would consider socialism if I could see examples of it working better or alternative solutions to make it possible that this time it would be different. But since all past socialist and communist societies have turned out to be bad for the majority of the people who lived under them and eventually self-destructed and most current ones seem to be reforming to add in either more freedom or more personal incentive or both... and since no one has any real plan for making it a more viable form... well, you can see where my leanings are. I wish we could revisit the state power vs. federal power issue instead. Oh well, elections are a one day thing for a lot of people and then we move on. As much as I care about them and try to stay informed in between, I know God will still be in his heaven and I can still serve him with or without a good government in place.

Want to hear something funny? We've already tried communism here and it failed. Isn't that a hoot? But also a true story, I swear. Both the Massachusetts Colony and the Virginia Colony in their earliest days gave communism a try and both had to give it up after things started going very badly. Then in both cases after they re-instituted personal ownership (personal incentive) their little economies reversed course and they started thriving. But you know, I can see why they gave it a shot. It sounds so nice and giving and lovely in theory. Even the example of the first century Christians seems to back it up. But you have to study history with a heart and an eye for wanting to truly understand it. And the difference was those first century Christians did what they did by choice not by having rules or laws that told them they had to or by government systems that simply did it for them. And many Christians today still have a heart to give of their own belongings to others whether they have millions of dollars to give from or barely anything. And that is where true good deeds come from, from good hearts not from laws and bureaucracies.

Hehe,,, I'm the same way. I had a terrible time with the coins when I was in Britain. But I've heard they have changed all their coins since then and now they are much easier. Is that true? I can tell you the parts of our currency that are easier, (easier for the same reason that metric can be easy). A penny, a dime and a dollar... if you ignore the nickels and the quarters you have base ten math at its best. A penny is a 100th, a dime is a 10th and a dollar is a whole unit. Base ten is always easiest for just about everybody. I know the hours of they day and imperial feet and inches are both base twelve but then again I also don't know very many people who can manipulate them easily in their heads without taking a bit of time over it. I surely can't. My husband is good with math and numbers like that. He can even do hexidecimal math at the drop of a hat... I had never even heard of that before I met him! I think it is base sixteen. But who knows. Just math people I guess and I am definitely not one of those. My husband tells me I am good for his computer career because knowing me has taught him that a person can be bad with computers even if they are generally intelligent. He has to work with a lot of end-users and help them, mostly women. I know it was hard for him at first. And I can understand. It is always hard to see why other people don't understand something if you understand it easily yourself. Poor guy. Patience, patience, patience.

Marie Antoinette was the youngest of the sixteen children of Maria Theresa empress of the Hapsburg empire and Francis I, Holy Roman Emperor. I don't know much of anything about her father, but I know a little bit about her mother and some of the politics of her coming into her reign. Marie Antoinette married Louis XVI and they became King and Queen of the French. She had a roller coaster life of trying to please and trying to fit in and always being subject to being a public personality with almost no personal power within the political sphere within which she had to live. At the end after many horrible accusations had been made against her, she was beheaded on the guillotine during the French revolution. By some accounts she is a pitiable character and by others nearly a monster and I've always been so curious wishing I could know which sources come closer to showing who she really was.

Do you have a good library where you live? Do your libraries do inter-library loans? I was just thinking you might be able to get ahold of American books you are interested in that way if some library in Britain has them rather than paying shipping for them from America. At least go in and ask the librarian about it. They might not, but it never hurts to ask. A lot of libraries here do it. So I have sometimes gotten books like that. It helps if you have all the right information to get the books looked up on the computer or even more if you already know of a specific library that owns a copy.

My DD14, Gwyneth, really recommends a series of books I bought her called The Royal Diaries. And there is one entitled: Marie Antoinette; Princess of Versailles by Kathryn Lasky, published by Scholastic, Inc. in New York, copyright 2000. I asked her which was her favorite of the series, expecting her to say the one on the Hawaiian princess, but she said it was between Marie Antoinette and Eleanor. That one's subtitle was Crown Jewel of Aquitaine. Author Kristiana Gregory. Its publishing info is the same except copyright 2002. They aren't the height of scholarly writing, but they were informative and entertaining. They are actually historical fiction, meaning there are a few things in them made up by the author. When reading historical fiction you can learn some history but you have to go to other sources to be sure. As a general rule, little details are best to be taken as most likely made up and the biggest things and the important dates are often correct. When we got them a few years ago, she read them so quickly!

Most of the stories of the American civil rights movement and integration (or the end of segregation) are from the 1960's. Although it had been happening before that in some places. That was when places where it had been resisted and racial tensions existed got forced to do it anyway. It was very bad. But then similar tensions have been continuing for racial, ethnic and religious reasons all around the world in every decade since. You can never erase human faults altogether. I'm just going to be thankful that particular one has been worked on as much as it has been here and that they got through the worst of it before I was born.

Thank-you for the compliment. I was very picky about names while I was pregnant each time and ended up thinking about names names names all the time. When I had my first child, my son, I wanted to pick a name that was a real name already and very solid but not overly common. I picked Alexander. I didn't know anyone with that name, and never had except one guy in school who I didn't really know when I was kid. I remember saying to people "I don't want him to have the same name as two or three other people in his class at school" which is what it was like when I was a kid, several Mikes in my year, three Melissas (and two of those girls had the same middle name as well!), two Jennifers, etc. Then that was the nine months that half the expectant parents in this country picked that name out. There were five born in the same week in same operating room where I had him and when he first got to school he was in a class with four others plus an Alexandra. So you can imagine how much more obsessed I was during the next two pregnancies wanting to succeed at my goal.

After you mentioned hearing about Ohio and how pretty it is, it got me to thinking about Malabar Farm. That is a place that I took my kids for a day trip. We actually went two or three time back when my son was still able to go on our outings. Now he works of course. It seems to me that we are due to go again. I might wait till spring but the girls and I should definitely go back. It used to be owned by an author who had a bunch of his books made into movies way back in the earlier days of Hollywood. But now it is a state park.

http://www.malabarfarm.org/

So here are some image links for you, one of malabar where you might have to double click on the pic to get the internet to show you a bigger version of the pic and one of the image carved on the side of Stone Mountain then two pictures taken during the laser show at Stone Mountain. (They project lasers against the side of the mountain!)

http://www.mansfieldtourism.com/memb...arm-state-park

http://www.destination360.com/north-...stone-mountain

http://www.panoramio.com/photo/3560374

http://www.tripadvisor.com/LocationP...a_Georgia.html

For me to get to the Atlantic coast I would have to drive across Pennsylvania and New Jersey. From my house to actually look at the ocean would be about a 9 1/2 hour drive.

I can see how cups would be confusing if you are not used to them. A cup is 8 ounces, but how is that helpful when ounces don't equal anything metric exactly and they aren't even base ten math. Nothing in the imperial system is. If I were you I'd just use conversion calculators through the internet, such as these:

http://www.calculateme.com/Volume/Cups/ToOunces.htm

http://www.metric-conversions.org/we...s-to-grams.htm
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Last edited by fromscratchmom; 11-10-2011 at 03:47 PM.
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Old 11-04-2011, 02:32 PM   #134
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Great pics, girl!! How did you do all the edits with the flashing writing? Gotta do that with my pics. Haven't done the water parks....will have to look into that. About how long did you stay that day? Would you recommend and do again? Have a great weekend.
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Old 11-06-2011, 07:59 PM   #135
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While I've been on the computer waaaayyy to much lately while resting up, I did jump on the Jamie Oliver forums and they gave me the scoop about the Shepherd's pie I thought I was making actually being Cottage pie!

http://www.jamieoliver.com/forum/viewtopic.php?id=75199

I knew someone there would have something to say.
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