Unschooling Your Spouse

 Having a different parenting style than your spouse is a common problem....more

The Freedom in Not Knowing

I didn’t get into unschooling for the freedom of it, though many people do. I probably hadn’t thought that much about freedom anyway, having taken for granted a whole range of cultural beliefs about how people need structure and order. I was drawn to unschooling because research supported it and I was persuaded from both a logical and intuitive stance that it was a good, probably the best, way for children to learn....more
At 15, I was sent to a school that practiced "self-directed learning", pretty much as a last ...more

Someday We'll Find It

One blog commenter recently challenged me with the phrase “if equality is truly your passion,” and that gave me pause. Is equality my passion, or was the death of Michael Brown just a news story that caught my attention for a few days? It was a fair question to stop and ask myself....more

I'm a White Mom, and I Care

On Monday night my husband and I couldn’t stop scrolling through social media and following the tragic story of Mike Brown. Mike Brown was an 18 year old boy from Missouri who was shot multiple times and killed by a police officer. He was unarmed and the only thing he was doing wrong at the time was walking in the street instead of on the sidewalk. And oh yeah, also, he was black. But maybe you guessed that already. This story did not get much (any?) press until the protests began to escalate into rioting....more

Food Rules: Setting Up a Self-Serve Pantry for Kids

You may remember a while back when I attempted an experiment in Family Style Eating. And how that didn’t work out so well. I loved the idea of giving the boys more power and control over their own meals and food portions, I loved the idea of letting them do more things themselves and learn by trial and error. But that particular endeavor involved a lot more error than seemed worth it!...more

Find Your Tribal War

“Find your tribe.”This is advice commonly given to new mothers. It used to be the tagline for Mothering magazine’s online forums (they’ve changed it to Connect With Other Moms, maybe indicating that mom tribes are on the way out – but members still organize themselves by the tribe system). Babywearing tribe? Breastfeeding tribe? Atheist/agnostic tribe? Choose one to find a group of “like minded mamas” where you will feel at home....more
LaurenBonk Thanks! I know, I always have that problem!more

I Was A Good Kid

I was a good kid. Well behaved, quiet. I talked early and read early. As a toddler I said excuse me to the vacuum cleaner when I passed by in the hallway, I’ve been told. I was soft spoken and got good grades in school....more

Why We Stopped Using Time Outs

I had started moving away from using punishments some time ago, for a combination of pragmatic and emotional reasons. Parenting-wise, 2013 was a difficult year for me, filled with intense sleep deprivation and a lot of mistakes (the two not being unrelated, obviously). It dawned on me slowly that time outs were not working to curb Miles’ aggressive behavior toward Julius, AND they were giving me intensely uncomfortable feelings, but I was really at a loss for what else to do. Still, I took one step in the direction of eliminating punishment: I quit using time outs. ...more
I do agree about teaching our children our values, but I don't think that punishment is ...more

Trustful Parenting Experiment #3: Unlimited Screen Time

This will be the one where I’m going to lose a lot of you. I’m okay with that....more
KristenSensenig MikeHuman it's true!!more

Trustful Parenting Experiment #2: Doing Less

This was a long winter, as everyone knows, except for you lucky devils living in places that didn’t get repeatedly body slammed by snow and/or subzero temperatures. Through the better part of the winter I kept pushing the kids to stick to a relatively active schedule of activities, errands, and playdates. We got out of the house just about every day and I thought this was good for us. But at a certain point, Miles slammed on the brakes. Getting him out of the house to go anywhere became such an unbelievable struggle that eventually I had to STOP and reconsider....more