Activity from widdershins

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Help Me Move: ADHD Version
One thing that I learned many years ago is that it's a lot easier to sort through belongings for what to keep/donate/sell etc. AFTER you move than before. When you're packing house, you have a million things to do in a short span of time. After you move in, you have all the time you need to properly sort stuff, and make better decisions about it. If you have very strict freight limitations, this may not be possible, but if weight/number of boxes isn't a big issue, there's no question that… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 12:39 PM on December 14, 2017

No RSVPs to kid's birthday party :(
Oh good, that's a nice update! As a fellow parent of slightly older kids, I just wanted to add that the phrase that works for me is 'please RSPV for accurate headcount/goodie bag purposes'. Nobody wants their kid to miss out on the goodie bag (although don't get me started on them; I hate them) and they generally understand that this means you need a number. Note that this doesn't guarantee they'll actually show up on the day, but it gets you much closer...

I use the… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 8:36 AM on November 30, 2017

Secret Quonsar thank you thread (2017)
I'm going to the post office to drop off my gift today. As a first time Quonser, I'm sooo hoping my Quonsee likes her gift. I feel like if she doesn't already have it, she will love and use it - but what if she already has one?? I made sure that she can exchange it locally easily, just in case, but I feel like that would be such a let-down... *breathes deeply, shakes it off*

Either way, I'm really excited to finally be participating, and I can't wait to get… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by widdershins at 8:32 AM on November 21, 2017
I got my quonsee gift the day before Thanksgiving but life has been so full that I only now had a chance to stop in and say THANK YOU to wenestvedt! As you clearly could tell, I love me some board games, so I was so happy to see that's what you got me! I brought them with me to Thanksgiving with the family, and we played both Mr. Toast and Bananagrams after dinner. Great choice!

And SpaceWarp13, I am so happy you liked your game! We love Dixit at our house, and when… [more]
posted to MetaTalk by widdershins at 1:22 PM on November 26, 2017

Best Family Boardgames
We are a huge game-playing family and my kids are 11, 11 and 9. Most of our favorites have already been mentioned, so I'll +1 to:
Settlers of Catan
Ticket to Ride
Spot It
Apples to Apples
Rat-a-tat Cat

Would also recommend Sleeping Queens - 3 of my kids' friends have bought this for themselves after playing it at our house. Easy and fun.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 3:32 PM on November 21, 2017

Seeking eerie tales of the icy sea
If you are up for short stories, consider Water: Tales of elemental spirits by Robin McKinley and her husband, Peter Dickinson. It's sci-fi/fantasy and definitely eerie, though it may have less of a focus on the sea itself and more on creatures found in the sea (Kraken, non-Disney mermaid etc.).

It's part of an elemental series, but to my knowledge they've only done 2 (Fire is the other one), which is a bummer because they're seriously excellent.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 2:48 PM on November 21, 2017

Dolla Dolla Balms Y'all
I'm a big fan of regifting and far from a germaphobe, but I would never accept used lipbalms. I don't think I'd take one from a friend, let alone a stranger. Try Freecycle, but no shelter/Goodwill etc. would accept them. I like the idea of seeing if you can turn them into candles, though!
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 3:14 PM on November 15, 2017

Secret Santa: Explain Like I'm a Planning Buffoon
I think you've covered all the bases there. At our office Secret Santa, we do a white elephant swap - meaning that we don't draw names, just put all the gifts in the middle and then draw numbers to determine the sequence.

I also wanted to recommend a variation, the "Treasure Swap", which we used to do at my book club every year and was fantastic: instead of purchasing something, we would all beautifully giftwrap one unwanted item from our house (so there's… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 3:07 PM on November 15, 2017

secret quonsar 2017: Signups are Open!
OK. *takes a deep breath* I'm in.

I have watched this from afar for too many years but have been too intimidated by the super-creative gifts that people seem to make and give to actually participate, but dammit, life is too short. Especially in 2017, when most of us feel like we can use any bit of cheer we can get. So here I go - eek!
posted to MetaTalk by widdershins at 10:59 AM on November 3, 2017

"...and now the facts are pouring out. DO SOMETHING!"
I mean who doesn't want to climb into a slow cooker

Personally, I am really, really ready to climb OUT of this slow cooker.
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 9:22 AM on October 30, 2017

Joni Mitchell: Fear of a Female Genius
The 2000 version of Both Sides Now is one of my top 5 favorite songs. If not top 3. I love the maturity imbued in that version - such a counterpoint to her youth in the first version. Whenever I hear it, I stop whatever I'm doing and soak it in - I absolutely cannot just halfway hear it while multitasking, it must be LISTENED to. There are many other wonderful (female) artists, but there will only ever be one Joni.

The only other song I feel like that about is Dar… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 12:32 PM on October 17, 2017

Mid-Range Tea (Yes, it's come to this)
Nthing Harney & Sons as well. I stayed at a friend's house this summer and tried their English breakfast tea and immediately ordered it for home. Just mellow and delicious. I then ordered an assortment of their teas, and my favorites so far are Paris, Chai and Earl Grey Supreme. I don't think you can go wrong with any of them.

I also second PG tips, but only the UK version. I couldn't believe how big the difference was - the US ones are full of dust and actually… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 2:41 PM on October 11, 2017

Prepare to add a very heartfelt dot, everyone

A thousand .'s. We throw around the word 'hero' a lot these days - this guy was a hero. It took a lot of courage to do what he did. RIP.
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 11:33 AM on September 18, 2017

Oh What a Feeling! (SLYT)
I can't believe how many of those movies I know and could instantly identify - pure rush of nostalgia for me. Even for the crappy movies : )
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 7:12 AM on September 14, 2017

Run, Hide, Repeat
I've been binge watching The Americans lately, and I was half expecting this story to go that way, with the reporter finally revealing that her parents were actually deeply embedded Russian spies. Honestly, take away the weird world references and you basically have all the family plot points from seasons 1-3.

My mother had BPD and did some fictional world-building as well, particularly around extended family members - and it really sucks to have the wool ripped from… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 8:37 AM on September 12, 2017

Seven Days of Heroin
That was ... powerful. I feel really glib just writing that. I think the worst part of it was the update on the mother in the video who is playing with her baby, the mother who had quit cold turkey when she learned she was pregnant and who looked like she was doing everything right, the mother who looked so alive and so loving and even happy - dead, just 10 days later. I nearly sobbed reading that.
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 2:07 PM on September 11, 2017

Just because it's Monday morning
I thought I'd hate it but I loved this - thought the designs were really clever. Clearly I'm less mature than I thought I was, because I chortled gleefully at the thought of offering nothing but those wineglasses at my next gamenight. Or giving someone the one-hole saltshaker/multi-hole pepper shaker as a housewarming gift. *snicker*
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 6:51 AM on September 11, 2017

Should I be financially sound, or should I be happy?
I also took a paycut for a job more aligned with my values, but it was nowhere in the region of 30-40% of my total income, which is what you're talking about here. I strongly discourage you from doing this, especially in such a rent-burdened city as NYC. I really hope you'll pass on this one and keep looking.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 1:12 PM on September 5, 2017

Emily Flies Solo
Ooh, I had no idea she was making a solo album! I know Amy is the 'cooler' one, but I've always preferred Emily's lyricism, so I'm excited about this. Will definitely download. Thx hippybear!
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 6:35 AM on August 31, 2017

The Tale Of Amniarix And The Rockets
I love stories like these. I always wonder if I would have been brave enough to do what she did. I would like to think so, but honestly, you just can't know until you're in it.

Thank you Johnny Wallflower for posting, and merci, merci, merci, Madame Rousseau de Clarens.
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 8:31 AM on August 30, 2017

Archetypal Top Universities
Film: USC. Much as I hate to say it as a UCLA Bruin myself.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 9:57 AM on August 21, 2017

Parenting tips for children with a mentally ill parent
+1 for Walking on Eggshells. My mother had BPD and it helped me tremendously. It is definitely more geared towards adult children, but I hope you will find strategies to help you.

As a child, my biggest issue in coping with my BPD mom was that I never knew which mom I would have on any given day - the charismatic, engaging one who I adored, the uninterested one who I just shrugged off, or the invective-spewing, spiteful one I tried to avoid at all costs. I used to… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 3:39 PM on August 17, 2017

Potty training for preschool
I've potty trained 3 kids and there's no question, every child is different. What motivates one will have no impact on another.

I had a similar issue with my third. At age 3 and 1/2 and despite us trying everything that had worked for his two sisters for about six months, he showed zero interest. I knew he was physically capable of identifying when he had to pee and poop - I forget exactly how, but I think he'd told us a couple of times when he was about to. One… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 9:51 AM on August 2, 2017

I'm down on myself. Please help me be brave.
This article talks about a study from 2014 which showed that people who use 2nd or 3rd person in talking to themselves are able to create more distance between their negative self-talk and themselves.

I have found that to be really true for me, and to the extent I'm able to do it, it works even better when I say it out loud. For example, if my internal monologue is saying 'I'm such a procrastinator, why can't I just get this done? What is wrong… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 9:38 AM on August 2, 2017

Am I sabotaging this new relationship or is it not to be?
I have a different take on this. It sounds to me like you actually quite like this guy, but you've been too burned to trust that the relationship is actually going OK. To me, it sounds like your anxiety is getting in the way and you're doing that thing where you don't believe you're good enough and therefore you're constantly questioning how you feel, whether you should feel that way, whether it's enough for him and for you.

If he's really smothering you or treating… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 9:20 AM on August 2, 2017

"I love what I do and I love the Sea."
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 7:16 AM on August 2, 2017

Everyone needs a smile
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 7:13 AM on August 2, 2017

A (not-so) Inconvenient Tooth
Only yesterday I was telling my daughter that only male narwhals have tusks. I would hang my head in shame, but instead I'm just going to go through these links with her. Live and learn!
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 7:07 AM on August 2, 2017

Help build MetaFilter’s savings
This prompted me to add my updated credit card info to my PayPal account, so thank you for that, and sorry I forgot about it for a few months. MeFi 4EVA
posted to MetaTalk by widdershins at 9:50 AM on July 31, 2017

mathowie transfers ownership of MetaFilter to cortex
Congrats Cortex!!
posted to MetaTalk by widdershins at 9:42 AM on July 31, 2017

Kuş Evi: The outer walls of houses should be bird houses
Had never heard of this and I really like it. Thx Eyebrows!
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 6:25 AM on July 31, 2017

Does Sir Mix-a-Lot even HAVE an oeuvre?
Ha - I agree with all of the top 10. But Sir Mix-a-Lot? Hell no. Watching ALL the women, young and old, at our (lesbian) wedding shake their asses off to Baby Got Back is one of my favorite memories of the day.
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 6:19 AM on July 31, 2017

A sewer becomes a frying pan, gas meters turn into quirky lobsters
Ha - I was just looking at these not even 10 minutes ago, and then I saw these, which made me realize I absolutely love this kind of graffiti art. How come none of this takes place where I live? The closest thing I've seen is someone sticking a blinking red light onto the nose of a Deer Xing sign. Which is cute and all, but I need MOAR
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 2:02 PM on July 27, 2017

Stuck In the Pseudo-Wife Zone
I'm a Norwegian living in the US, and I echo the comments above that huge weddings really aren't a thing in Scandinavia in general; however, they certainly could be a thing for his family.

I will also say that because so many Scandinavians choose not to get married, marriage is kind of considered to be more of a meaningful and sometimes more religious thing than it is in the US. And this may be playing into his reluctance to do a small, paperwork-only, ceremony here -… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 9:32 AM on July 20, 2017 marked best answer
That's a really nice way of saying that he actually isn't committed to marrying you yet.

Which may or may not be true, and by Scandinavian standards, completely OK. Just because you have a child with someone, it doesn't mean that you're committing to be with someone forever - it means you're committing to taking care of the child and co-parenting forever. In Norway, the idea of getting married just because you're pregnant is considered... kind of… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 1:21 PM on July 20, 2017 marked best answer

“Keep these safe. They are my whole life.” Charlotte Salomon
Wow. It looks like the grandfather had at least 3 suicides on his conscience. The horror she must have felt on being told that she had to live with him again, when she'd finally gotten out. No wonder she poisoned him within 3 months of moving back in. Veronal Omelette indeed. I would have poisoned the fucker too.
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 8:53 AM on July 18, 2017

New England vacation for two moms and a baby
I was surprised that your question did not mention Provincetown. In the off chance you are not familiar, it is the gay/lesbian mecca on the cape. It is very famous not just for its nightlife but also for being especially family friendly to 'alternative' families. Somehow I have never been, but my wife must have gone a dozen times or so over the years before we met. All our lesbian friends goggle when they hear I haven't been (guess I should fix that at some point...).
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 1:26 PM on July 12, 2017

"Every woman in Hollywood was reading for this movie"
I'm still convinced she let the ball go. She knew it meant more to Kit than it did to her.
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 7:52 AM on July 8, 2017

No yak, that's like an ox.
My immediate theory was that someone said to do 'yak' for Y and the other person/illustrator misheard it as 'axe'.
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 7:31 AM on June 30, 2017

First thing we do, let's pay all the lawyers
In his season ender last year, John Oliver listed several organizations that are fighting the good fight. They're outlined in this article. We started donating to National Resources Defense Council and International Refugee Assistance Project based on his show, and they're great.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 12:03 PM on June 29, 2017 marked best answer

Engagement party: gift?
If the luncheon is being funded by the engaged couple (or their families), then it's a gift occasion. However, it doesn't need to be a formal or big gift. A nicer-than-usual bottle of champagne or fine liquor would be a good gift - aged port, special champagne, something like that.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 11:54 AM on June 29, 2017

Offline ipad games for an 11-year-old?
Yes, I strongly recommend the Awakening series! They're perfect for 11-year olds (and I love them too). They're hidden object puzzle adventure games and you usually download them for free, then after some free gameplay you have to pay $6.99 to continue. Which seems a bit steep, but it takes hours - usually anywhere between 4-8 - to complete, and it's got great puzzles to complete along the way. You have to be online to buy, so make sure to check them out before you leave and pay for the full… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 11:49 AM on June 29, 2017

China's Mistress Dispellers
Shit like this makes me so damn angry. The other day I was listening to a Fresh Air interview with Manal al-Sharif, a Saudi woman who defied unwritten law to drive a car herself (Daring to Drive is the book she wrote about it). Listening to her talk about how many basic rights are denied to women in Saudi Arabia was physically painful to me. How the fuck did so, so many cultures of the world decide that women are less than, that women are inferior, that women are property? It wasn't that… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 11:58 AM on June 26, 2017

Reasonably affordable, experiential gifts
I love these ideas and am totally stealing them for date night. My marriage thanks you.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 1:46 PM on June 21, 2017

Making an apartment home
So there the trick to making an apartment feel like home is to make sure it appeals to all the senses - obviously sight, but also touch, hearing and smell. (I'd argue taste as well, but we'll leave that one out for now.) You do that by making sure you have the right balance in every room for:
- different levels of light
- color
- softness/textures
- scent (or at least the absence of bad smells)
-… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 8:37 AM on June 19, 2017

Outdoor speaker solutions
I'm not clear on whether you want the sound system to live outside permanently? If not and you're willing to move the speakers back into the house when you're done, I think Sonos is exactly what you're looking for, as long as you can plug them into a power outlet.

I have two, love them, and plan to add more.

Edited to add that there's a current promotion of $50 off two Play1's, so basically $350 for two great speakers.
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 2:31 PM on June 12, 2017 marked best answer

Between an aging sailor's memory and contradictory written sources
Fascinating and charming.

This story reminded me of the recent 'what do I need to know in order to become a Canadian' AskMe, in which one of the answers was to make sure to take any opportunity to point out 'he's Canadian, you know'. As a Norwegian, I must say we also EXCEL at this, and I'd like to submit this story as evidence Exhibit A.
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 7:27 AM on June 11, 2017

There Once Was a Groundskeeper...
I am not usually a supporter of football or hooliganism, but I have to admit I loved this story. Great read.
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 7:25 AM on June 5, 2017

I took a trip to crazytown, but now I'm fine! Hire me!
I really think it's OK to say that after 15 years, you needed a break. A LOT of teachers get burned out, and 15 years is a long and honorable time to have taught. So you took a break, recharged and realize that you really miss teaching, and now you're back. Spin it to your advantage! You have fresh eyes and are super motivated because you know exactly what you're getting yourself into and exactly why you want to do this again. No apologies, no regrets. You know you're a great teacher -… [more]
posted to Ask MetaFilter by widdershins at 8:04 AM on June 2, 2017

Gay Vulture Dads
I read this story yesterday and was surprised the article didn't reference And Tango Makes Three - a wonderful children's book from 2005 about the 2 gay penguins at the Central Park Zoo who raised a chick together (Tango, because it takes two...). It is honestly a great children's book that I have given as a present many times. As same-sex parents, we found it a wonderful way to show our kids diversity in families, and a very gentle way to teach them that homosexuality is indeed found in… [more]
posted to MetaFilter by widdershins at 7:45 AM on June 2, 2017

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