@cuminafterall This is really smart -- I have dropped the ball too many times on niece and nephew birthdays. I can totally see just dedicating a day to getting it done, and then all I have to remember is to ship them when the time comes.
I did two 1 things this week, and didn't even put them off until today! The first was making an appointment for a dental cleaning. The second was taking my nine-month-old for a blood draw to test for food allergies. I was totally dreading that one, but his doctor gave me the excellent tip to go to the blood lab at one of the local hospitals, because they're more experienced. I did, and they had a baby blood-drawing specialist available who got his vein on the first try, NBD, done in 60 seconds.
I worked in a school in Phoenix that did the same thing -- free breakfast and lunch for all students. It was good for the students as well as the bottom line, because it was equalizing. There was no more stigma attached to getting free meals. I couldn't agree more with Dallas' decision; even better if it saves money. My usual policy is not to engage in anything approaching a political discussion on Facebook, but I recently lit into an acquaintance on Facebook because she was complaining about her kids' magnet school "cutting into class time" with a breakfast-in-the-classroom program. "Everyone feeds their children healthy breakfasts at home -- we all discussed it at parents' night." Because a) if I didn't have the resources to feed my kid breakfast, certainly a sanctimonious anti-free-breakfast group would be the first people I'd open up to about it; b) I am pretty sure that not every single student every single year is 100% food-secure, in which case it's a bigger PITA to start and stop the program, as Dallas has recently decided; and c) if every student every year IS 100% food-secure, that district needs to examine why only privileged kids are making it into their "highly gifted" magnet school. I was very upset -- it just seems so mean-spirited to try to take away this program that is equalizing and so helpful to children whose families are struggling. At my AZ school, the teachers had a stash of backpacks that they would have the lunch ladies load up on Fridays with stuff that would keep for a few days to send home with kids they knew might otherwise have very little to eat until Monday morning. They also stocked up on super-coupon-deal nonperishables themselves to supplement what the school cafeteria was able to put together.
Ahahaha! I went to Princeton, and have never made more than $30k, because I was dicking around working coffee shops and bookstores for a couple of years until I got a job as a professional lab assistant (I think $25K?), then figured out that I wanted to change fields (from molecular biology to anthropology ... high-paying field doesn't mean much if the little fulfillment you find in the work is negated by 60% of the dudes you work with mansplaining your own work to you) and be a professor. So I've been working on my PhD since then, one year of which I got a fellowship that paid the $30k, the rest of which I've been TAing/RAing/professionally baking/sponging off the husband to get by.
My husband has Canadian citizenship from being born in Quebec. I have been campaigning for him to parlay it into a job there so we can all go and be Canadian and enjoy a sane healthcare system and nice people. My sister was born in Mexico, and I remember once upon a time my parents having a Mexican baby passport for her, so I think she could claim citizenship there just for being born there? We were born in the 70s, though, so things may have changed. I was born in Sweden, but all I got for that was a conversation-starter with Scandinavian customs officials when they look at my passport. "Ah, Uppsala! [Something in Swedish.]" "Sorry, I don't speak it! Nur ein bisschen Deutsch, ha-ha. I was six months old when I left." I always get paranoid that this makes me look like I'm traveling on false documents and I will be escorted to the airport mini-jail at any minute.
My standard is $50, and I always go off the registry. I don't see the registry as a transactional thing -- "You'll have to bring one of these to get in the door" -- just an acknowledgement that a wedding is a gift-giving occasion and people like to have a place to start in picking something out. I try to get something from their formal china, because I feel like those are items that aren't very exciting for people to buy so couples end up with, like, 4 partial place settings.