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Taxing Questions — and Some Answers

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I dislike filling out tax forms, and am lucky to have a spouse who actually kind of enjoys it. (She was a financial advisor for a while.) This year is tricky for us, however, since we are married in our state and must now fill out federal tax forms as “married” for the first time. In a way, it’s easier than doing the three federal forms we had to fill out in previous years — one for each of us as “single” and a “dummy” married one that we used to complete our state (married) form — but it raises its own set of questions. For same-sex couples married but living in states that don’t recognize their marriages, the questions may be even more complicated. Luckily, there’s help out there.

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Talk with Iron Chef Cat Cora on Wednesday

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Cat Cora, chef, entrepreneur, and lesbian mom, will be on Residence Inn’s Family Travel Talk Forum this Wednesday evening to talk travel, cooking, and more. Everyone’s invited to join in and ask questions!

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Betty Crocker Celebrates ALL Families

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A treat for your weekend viewing: In honor of yesterday’s National Coming Out Day, Betty Crocker posted a wonderful video of LGBT families at the New York City and Twin Cities Pride events this year.

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Barilla Pasta Chair: “I absolutely don’t respect adoptions in gay families”

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Pasta is a parent’s lifesaver. It’s quick and easy to prepare, and even the pickiest kids usually like some version of it. I was disheartened, then, to learn that Guido Barilla, the chair of Barilla Pasta — my go-to brand — told a radio interviewer Wednesday that, “I absolutely don’t respect adoptions in gay families, because that concerns a person who is not the people who decide.” Guess what? We LGBT parents, like most parents, buy lots of pasta for our families. I daresay it won’t be Barilla now.

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Effects of DOMA Ruling for Same-Sex Parents in All States

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Several announcements last week made it clear that same-sex couples who are legally married will be recognized as married by the U.S. government — even if they do not reside in a state that recognizes same-sex marriages. That’s generally good news for same-sex parents — although there are still a few things to keep in mind.

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Betty Crocker Bakes Cakes for Minnesota Same-Sex Weddings

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Betty Crocker sits right up there with television’s June Cleaver as one of the icons of homemaking. How delightful, then, that General Mills, which owns the Betty Crocker brand, will be donating cakes to the first three same-sex couples to marry in Minnesota when it becomes legal to do so this Thursday — and that the brand is taking other steps to include same-sex couples in its marketing.

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Cat Cora’s Banana Yogurt Split with Berries and Coconut

Cat Cora Named 2013 Resident Mom

Here’s the last of three recipes that Iron Chef and lesbian mom Cat Cora has created for Residence Inn by Marriott (as I explained Tuesday)—a dessert, appropriately: Banana Yogurt Split with Berries and Coconut.

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Cat Cora’s Spicy Chicken, Tangerine and Shiitake Stir Fry

Cat Cora Named 2013 Resident Mom

As I mentioned yesterday, Iron Chef and lesbian mom Cat Cora has been named “Resident Mom Of The Year 2013” by Residence Inn, and has developed three unique recipes that parents can easily create while staying at a Residence Inn (or at home). Here’s the second one: a Spicy Chicken, Tangerine and Shiitake Stir Fry. (I’m guessing it works well with tofu instead of chicken, too.)

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Give OUT to LGBTQ Nonprofits Today!

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Today is the first national Give OUT Day, an event to encourage people to make charitable donations on a single day in support of the LGBTQ community. Any day is a good day to give, of course, but doing so en masse like this helps show the power of our community and allies.

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Iron Chef (and Lesbian Mom) Cat Cora Is Residence Inn’s “Resident Mom Of The Year 2013″

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Last fall, I wrote about my night at the Residence Inn, courtesy of Residence Inn by Marriott, which was reaching out to blogging parents for feedback and ideas. I mentioned the company’s LGBT friendliness—a friendliness they’ve reinforced by naming chef and lifestyle entrepreneur Cat Cora their “Resident Mom Of The Year 2013,” and by mentioning “She resides in Santa Barbara, CA, with her wife and four sons” in their press release about it. There’s more, plus a recipe by Cora, after the jump.

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Good News or Bad News for Children of Same-Sex Parents Applying for Financial Aid?

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There was good news and bad news yesterday for same-sex parents of children in or soon-to-be in college: Starting with the 2014-2015 federal student aid form, the U.S. Department of Education will ask for information about a dependent student’s legal parents regardless of the parents’ marital status or gender, as long as the parents live together. That’s good news, in that it will be the first time the form reflects the actualities of same-sex parents’ families (and those of unmarried, opposite-sex parents). It’s bad news, in that some students may receive less aid now that both parents’ contributions will be recognized—or will they?

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Give OUT to LGBTQ Organizations on May 9

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May 9 is the first national Give OUT Day, an event to encourage people to make charitable donations on a single day in support of the LGBTQ community.

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Mombian Cooks: Chocolate Cherry Fudge Cake

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There’s nothing particularly lesbian-momish about chocolate cake—unless you make it for your lesbian sweetie and son for Valentine’s Day, as I did last week. A follower of the Mombian Facebook page asked for the recipe when I posted a photo there, so here it is: Chocolate Cherry Fudge Cake, a dark chocolate cake with a poured fudge frosting and jammy center.

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Wanda Sykes Gives $15K to LGBTQ Youth Center

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Comedian and lesbian mom Wanda Sykes surprised her audience last Thursday by announcing a $15,000 donation to the Ruth Ellis Center in Detroit. The Center provides short- and long-term residential safe space and support services for runaway, homeless, and at-risk LGBTQ youth.

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The Ultimate New England Muffins

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I haven’t posted a recipe in a while, so here’s one I made this past weekend for the Massachusetts State Muffin (corn). It’s enhanced by the Massachusetts State Fruit (cranberries), and sweetened by that most New England of sweeteners, maple syrup. If I were to put any more New England in it, I’d have to add clams—but don’t worry, I won’t.

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History Tidbit: A 19th-Century Tomboy and Inventor

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You’ve heard of Thomas Edison—but have you heard of Margaret Knight? She was a contemporary of Edison and the holder of at least two dozen U.S. patents. (Some sources say nearly 90, but the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office says 26, and I take them for the authority.) She created her first invention, a safety mechanism for mechanical looms, when she was only 12.

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Discrimination Means Children with LGBT Parents May Face Extra Economic Hardships

There’s a myth that LGBT parents are all affluent—a myth perpetuated by many in the media, who tend to focus on upper-middle and upper class families when they do LGBT family stories. The reality is much different. Children being raised by same-sex couples are in fact twice as likely to live in poverty as those being […]

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How to Apply for Financial Aid if You Have Same-Sex Parents: New York Times

The federal Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form asks applicants to list their “mother/stepmother” and “father/stepfather.” But applying for aid, if you have same-sex parents, isn’t just a matter of crossing one of those out and writing in the correct term, says Tara Siegel Bernard of the New York Times in her piece, “How to File for Financial Aid if Your Parents Are Gay.”

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Parenting Funnies at Autostraddle

Lesbian news and entertainment site Autostraddle is terrific, but perhaps not the first place you’d turn for parenting information. If you haven’t read executive editor Laneia’s posts on “How to Live With Kids: Toys & Entertainment” and “How to Live with Kids: Food & Cooking,” however, you’re missing two of the funniest yet most truthful […]

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TD Bank Responds About New Survey on Parents and Financial Literacy

If there’s one thing I like as a consumer and erstwhile marketing professional, it’s a responsive company. I posted yesterday about a survey sponsored by TD Bank that explored how parents teach their kids financial literacy, but clearly focused only on opposite-sex parents. This morning, I received the following e-mail from Jimmy Hernandez, a media relations officer at TD Bank. I repost it here with his permission:

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New Survey on Parents and Financial Literacy: Where Are the Same-Sex Parents?

April is Financial Literacy Month, and I’ve been receiving a number of related press releases, some silly and some less so. While I didn’t think many of you would really be interested in a talking piggy bank, I did think you might have some thoughts on a new survey from TD Bank. It’s titled, “TD Bank Financial Literacy Poll Reveals the Role of Parents in a Fiscally Fit Family”—although it really should be titled, “TD Bank Financial Literacy Poll Reveals the Role of Parents in a Fiscally Fit Heterosexual Family.”

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Legal and Financial Hurdles for Same-Sex Parents

The New York Times has an article today on “The Extra Hoops Gay Parents Must Jump Through” in terms of legal and financial protections. Three experts, a lawyer, a financial planner and an accountant (which sounds like the start of a joke, but it’s not), offer their advice to a lesbian couple in Michigan with two children.

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Thinking of Japan

Like many of us, my thoughts have been much with the people of Japan over the past few days. If your personal circumstances allow, you may want to consider giving to relief efforts through the Rainbow World Fund, a “an all-volunteer international humanitarian service agency based in the lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) and friends community.” […]

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Studies May Shed Light on Opposite-Sex Parents; What About Same-Sex Ones?

Here’s a topic ripe for discussion: A recent study by Ohio State University researchers found that couples who share childcare duties equally are more likely to experience conflict than those in which the mother does more. The study only looked at opposite-sex couples, however.

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Family Finance with a Lesbian Twist: The Boston Globe Gets It Right

The Boston Globe this Sunday published an article titled, “Learning to adjust,” with a sub-heading explaining, “For millions of middle-class Americans, the recession has forever changed spending habits and forced a reconsideration of basic expectations–like retirement.” It’s a nice article about personal finance in our times. What makes it noteworthy, however, is that the two spouses profiled in the article are lesbian moms Liz Page and Marianne Stravinskas. The fact that they are a same-sex couple is incidental to the main thrust of the article, which is not about “gay” finance per se.

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