Posted by: whimsigal | May 27, 2008

Can’t we all just get along?

Recently I followed a link to a blog that had taken a pretty hard stance against unschooling. The blog author had read an essay written by a teenager who was urging parents to consider their child’s feelings and interests and she considered his essay to be “horseshit”. I’m not providing any links because she has gotten enough attention already but I was fairly shocked by the things she wrote there. Mostly because I’m a live-and-let-live kind of person. My purpose in life is not to call bullshit (or horseshit as the case may be) on someone’s method of raising or educating their children. Now, if you’re beating the hell out of your kids then that’s a different ball game but for the most part, I support a parent’s choice in what’s appropriate for their own children. I’m not going to say, “Oh so-and-so is not a real unschooler or classical homeschooler” or whatever because they don’t follow every tenet set down by the “experts” on the topic. I just don’t understand the reason for people feeling so threatened by radical unschooling and the vitriol it inspires. We’re a lot less radical than most but do implement some of those beliefs in our daily lives and have found a rhythm that works quite well for us. I’d be lying though if I said I wasn’t personally offended by the “horseshit” comment made by the other blogger. To each her own but, please don’t judge me or my lifestyle if you’re ignorant about what it entails.

In other news, we had a wonderful Memorial Day weekend here. Sean finished up his exams and has a week off before school starts again. He’s 15% through his MBA course! 🙂 On Sunday, the boys and I went down to the park with my sister, brother-in-law, and my niece for a scavenger hunt and boy, was that fun! Before we left, the grownups made lists for the kids to use and then we were off searching for wild strawberries, caterpillars, cocoons, buttercups, butterflies, trees with split trunks, and the list goes on and on. It was fun for all of us and made our walk a little bit deeper in context than it normally would have been. We found ourselves really looking at the world around us and discovering things that weren’t on the list at all. It was a great way to spend some time together. Later that night, we cooked out together and stayed up late talking politics and then some silliness and it felt so good to laugh until my sides hurt. I’m really lucky to have my sister as my best friend and to have her living so close to me. We all get along really well and it just makes me feel happy when we’re all together like that.

Yesterday, we all got up and went to the Natural Science Center and then picked up Chick-fil-a and took it to a park for a picnic. It was a park that is in a neighborhood that my sister and I grew up in and it’s fantastic. Nothing terribly different about it but the green space there seems endless and the boys love to run around in the grass like nobody’s business. We don’t have much grass in our yard. It made me wish we lived closer to that park (there is a house for sale there) so the boys could walk out the door and head out to a huge field to play. I know they’d love it. It would mean having a slightly smaller home but I don’t think that would be such a big deal. Heck, I can barely take care of the one we have now so smaller could be a blessing. LOL

And since every post feels lonely without a photo here are a few for you:

Iain building card houses:
building card houses.jpg

Peonies from my mother’s yard:
peonies at nanas.jpg

I hope you enjoyed a wonderful weekend wherever you spent it and thank you for patiently putting up with this meandering post! LOL



  1. In regards to the homeschooling issue – I absolutely agree with you Evie! I wrote a little while back on my blog that I don’t care what type of homeschooler people label themselves as – I can learn something from all of them (and I do!). Hence the eclectic list of blogs that I read.

    Love the colours in your flower pic too.
    Cate 🙂

  2. People need tolerance and non judgment in so many areas – parenting, mothers working or not, and religion are a few on my mind recently.
    Take you and me – we are making totally different choices right now on schooling, working (though w/your talent that might change), and church. I find your writings about your life very interesting and I support your decisions.

  3. Cate, you’re so right. We can all learn so much from one another. It’s a shame how many people get hung up on the labels. Glad you like the pic of the flower! 🙂

    We do come from different perspectives, don’t we? Yet I love reading your blog and your take on life and you’ve said in your comment you enjoy mine. I hope that I have never made you feel badly towards me about any of my sometimes strong opinions on topics like school and religion. Reading that woman’s blog made me realize how easy it is to be judgmental of someone and their lifestyle and I do NOT want to do that.

    I value your opinions and support your decisions as well!!

  4. The hard thing to remember is that we never get to see the big picture and we never get to know the intricate workings of another’s mind, so we make judgements based upon the wee bits of information we have. I had a ‘run-in’ with an extremely authoritarian parent not too long ago. She pulled her rank on *my* son which is what finally tipped the scale for me, but in our conversations we both learned a lot about the other and why we parent the way we do. We got more of the big picture. We still fall down in separate camps, but it was fascinating to me that we actually had an insightful conversation when I was ripe for a fight and expected an entirely different response from the one I got!

    Hey, question – I keep forgetting to ask. Did you meet bossy?!? Do tell! She came near me and I really really considered going, but in the end… I didn’t. Laziness.

  5. Great food for thought. I don’t know the blog you’re referring to, but I’m in the camp of “let’s learn our own way and you do whatever works for you”.

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