February 2020

Variations of Jenga

sarajean's picture

Right now my teenager is all about playing Jenga, although it's also a bit of a joke. Check out Iliza Schlessinger's comedy if you don't know what I'm talking about (I believe it's in her special Elder Millennial)! We've been finding all kinds of funny variations to play the game so if you think you've played it but you've only played it the way it's intended to be played, you may want to get the game back out again!

Din Tai Fung

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When it comes to dim sum, I bet I crave it every week. Where I live, there aren't a lot of choices, but I have lived in other cities where you could try a new place every week for a few months, and I sure miss that! If you haven't had the pleasure, dim sum is a type of Chinese cuisine where you choose what to eat from a bunch of small portions. You get a small container (a steamer basket or plate) for the table and share with those dining with you and it's so much fun, not to mention delicious!

Radio Signals From Space Explained?

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We've been getting regular radio signals from space that have scientists perplexed for a while now, many of which seem to generate from the same location, over and over again. Those of us who are dying to make contact with life on another planet are obviously hoping for some intelligence behind the signals, but now scientists believe that the signals may actually be from a wobbling star!

Meds For Cats

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If you've ever had a sick or injured cat, you know how hard it is to find a way to help. While many doctors will prescribe meds for cats with chronic conditions (my oldest is currently on four medications!), most really aren't approved for cats, and for a good reason: it can be dangerous. Cats usually don't get pain meds, either, since they can get hurt or die from them so easily. My big, hearty dogs are much easier to care for while sick or injured (although keeping them still is another matter; I'm so glad I'll never have to get them spayed again!).

1980s Remakes Coming to a Theater Near You

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Some fans are stoked about a new Ghostbusters film (some of us loved the last one and still want to see the next one!), and some wish that movie makers would just leave the 1980s alone. While it does seem a little lazy to just keep remaking films, if the new movie is good and people enjoy it, then why not? Some are arguing that many terrible movies deserve remakes even more, since it might reinvent them in a better light.

Carbon-Free Certified Coffee

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Recently I bought some coffee from Grounds for Change through a fundraiser some friends' kids were having for their school, and I'm pretty much addicted to this coffee. It's just the best coffee I've had, and I'm really not a coffee snob by any means; if it's not burnt I'll drink it (well, I might draw the line at amaretto, which I detest). But this coffee may convert me for life.

Hosta Love

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My mom loves hostas, and every year I get her a few for the spring holidays (her birthday, Mother's Day, Easter) along with her other gifts. Now that she's moved she's quite hosta-less so I need to get on it in terms of helping her re-stock her garden! Both my mom and my aunt have much greener thumbs than I do, and I love to watch the care they give their plants, as well as listen to how they talk about their plants, both indoors and outdoors, as if they were a part of the family.

Best Poems About Spring

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You might compare someone to a summer's day, but hope springs eternal... or something like that. Doesn't it seem like most seasonal poems are written about springtime? I suppose it's no wonder, since spring often means relief to many people from winter doldrums. It really is one of the most beautiful times of the year, and given how many people used to get married in the spring/early summer, it's also prime season for love poems.

Frog Urban Legends

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This week it's all about urban legends, monsters and myths at my house, and my teen and I stumbled upon the story of the Loveland Frog, an urban legend about a humanoid frog that stands up to four feet tall. It can apparently talk and uses a wand to send sparks and use magic on people, or at least it can according to the salesman who claims it's what he saw in 1955. Seems sketchy to me!

Latin American Monsters

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My teen is studying Latin American monsters, legends and folklore right now and we are knee-deep into plenty of creatures we wish we'd seen on Supernatural. There are loads of creatures but this list has a great mini introduction to several of them, like El Cuco, Acalicia, and my favorite, La Llorona. 

Government Mandated Immunizations

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A woman in one of my homeschool groups is hoping to stir up some drama with a candidate for office. She's requesting a meeting to discuss mandated vaccines, which isn't even on our state's ballot, as well as homeschooler tax breaks, which most of us do NOT want. It's a headache because it's squeaky wheels like this who get the attention and make the rest of us have to get off our lazy butts and counter her claims, as she doesn't represent all of us.

The Danger Of Abstinence Only Education

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By now, if you're a rational person, you already know that abstinence-only education only leads to more teen pregnancies among youth who have no idea how to protect themselves, more abortions and more poor health overall. This willful forcing of ignorance upon teens is gross negligence and should be considered government-sanctioned child endangerment. Even without thinking of the sexual consequences of lack of education about your body, there are so many other ramifications.

15-CD Box Set Coming Soon!

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Have you heard about the new Grateful Dead boxed set? It's available for pre-order at the Grateful Dead website and includes 15 CDs featuring music from five previously unreleased shows from the band's 1976 return tour.

There will be a limited number of these sets for sale, so you'll have to get your hands on them before all 12,000 copies are sold out. They are going to be individually numbered, making them the perfect collector's item or gift, and they're mastered in HDCD.

Elizabeth Warren Has Always Been A Fierce Force

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After Elizabeth Warren took down Mike Bloomberg at the last debate, I was surprised to hear all of the people who were shocked at her tenacity and grit. "She really let him have it!" they exclaimed. They said she really brought her A-game but c'mon, folks: if you've been paying attention, that's what she's been doing for at least a decade and a half since I've been following her. This is a woman KNOWN for taking down rich people and big business. Why are you so shook?

Quokka Cuties

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When it comes to Australian mammals, we tend to focus on kangaroos and koalas most of the time. Most of us have even heard of a wallaby. But what about the quokka? This little macropod is the size of a cat and is thought to be the happiest animal alive because it's always smiling!

Garbage Pail Kids Book Series Coming Soon

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Milennials, get ready to squee: R. L. Stine is back with a new series and it's about... Garbage Pail Kids! Can you believe this? I loved Garbage Pail Kids so much as a kid. I even left them at peoples' graves in those little vases they had on them to hold flowers because I thought they were very meaningful, important gifts. (I wonder if they're still in them...) 

I wasn't a big fan of Goosebumps, although my teenager was; I was into the Fear Street books instead. Either way this is a neat throwback featuring two nostalgic 80s/90s favorites. 

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