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The Case for Living the Self-Directed Life (or Summertime all Year Long)

Summer is probably the most dreamed about, written about, and longed for season in America. For most of America's children and young adults, summertime means freedom. The school year schedule fades away and the longer, warmer days are replaced…
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Guilt is a Messenger? Yes.

''Guilt, the sense of anguish that we have fallen short of our own standards, is the guardian of our goodness.'' In a 1983 article written by Jane E. Brody for the New York Times entitled, Guilt: Or Why it's Good to Feel Bad she reviews the…
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You Might Be Ego-schooling If...

Once upon a time, when our family first made the decision to forego the traditional schooling options, I dreamed of being a fabulous teacher to my kids. We would come together every morning, still dressed in our pajamas, sipping cocoa or nibbling…
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25 Ways Joyful Families Operate

We all long for a joyful life. To be in the company of people who are happy and peaceful is nirvana. We create visions in our heads of what a joyful life looks like then we proceed to Pin everything that meets that perception. A tapestry…
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Pine Cone Bird Feeders: 4 easy steps

We love birds. For years we have been observing them and putting up birdhouses in our backyard to provide shelter. We have also participated in FeederWatch and the Great Backyard Bird Count. If you haven't heard of either of these, I encourage…
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If You Want Children to Love Learning, Let Them Lead

It’s 11 a.m., the first day of the new year, and my 14 year old has just come out of his room. Hair disheveled, loving grin on his face as his tall body bends over to give me a hug. This is how every morning begins if I’m home when he wakes.…
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Creating Peace around the Palate: Understanding "Picky" Eaters

Food is the great connector--the center of gatherings, celebrations, services, and parties. We bake to show our appreciation. We cook to support an ailing family member or neighbor. Entire industries are built around growing, preparing, delivering,…
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Rethinking problem children

The room is uncomfortably quiet. Seven people sit around a large table shuffling papers, looking down, whispering softly to a neighboring meeting participant. The parents know the drill, so does their child. The teachers look exasperated, the…
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Let go of my Ego

"If you want to reach a state of bliss, then go beyond your ego and the internal dialogue. Make a decision to relinquish the need to control, the need to be approved, and the need to judge. Those are the three things the ego is doing all the…
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Raising Humans? 7 Books Every Child Wants you to Read

  It is extraordinary that the most important job in the world, raising a child, is an untrained position. -Richard Grossman, Ph.D.   When I was around 11 or 12 I found several books my Mom had been reading that caused me feelings…
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Funny Bones- A Craft Project

I'm a sucker for a good craft so when I saw an idea for a skeleton that sticks to the front of the refrigerator that could be moved about, I had a feeling our family needed this.  We are constantly in and out of the kitchen making food and…
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Why Children Need Pets

I grew up with pets. As a matter of fact, my rather impulsive (he probably thought of himself as forward thinking) Dad brought home a puppy to my two brothers the day my Mom brought me home from the hospital. Because you know, an infant and…