Adventures in Unschooling

Archive for March 2010

Durian smells putrid and tastes putrid. Yuck!

I felt inspired to try one after one of the raw foodies I admire raved about them. I should have heeded the comment about the smell but curiosity got the best of me…again.

Like another blogger wrote about Durian, the spikes and stink should be enough for any mammal to STAY AWAY but humans have been known to avoid the warnings of mother nature. People eating rotten eggs and rotten cheese comes to mind. Ewww! Ha ha ha.

And inside you how the big the pods of flesh are. The other picture shows the large, odd shaped pit. You can also easily see from that same picture how creamy it is. The texture is not offensive at all. Just the smell and the taste. I didn’t even dare try to make a recipe out of the flesh. There’s $7.50 I am not getting back.

Some experiments you just regret. Well, not fully. I think that any experiment which causes you to learn something has some value.

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I have recently closed my Facebook account. I am not going to go into the reasons other than I have been re-thinking the role of internet in my house. I know that I spend some of the best hours of my day on here instead of with my kids. I know that it has been a great place for me to research, get raw recipes and find like minded people. Something that has been a terrific comfort to me as I bravely go where no one I know has gone before. I am also looking forward to getting out of Alberta and into BC (fingers crossed) where there are more people like us.

When I read unschooling and raw food blogs the majority of the Canadian ones come from BC and Quebec. There seems to be a change of values on the extreme ends of Canada. I can’t speak for the maritimes though.

I guess I am feeling pretty lonely. I know I sort of do it to myself. I could just keep my mouth shut and go with the flow. Maybe try to catch the latest episode of some ridiculous reality show that everyone is watching. But that’s just not me. I am starting to feel like I am just going to have to embrace that and accept that I may not have as many close friends as I’d like.

I bet my husband will be better able to forge bonds in his next career but that doesn’t ensure success in their mates and I forming lasting friendships.

My other big problem is that I have failed to get involved in my community. Every time I say I am going to take an art class I punk out because of the money. I have a hard time spending money on stuff like that when I know we have other priorities right now (living life in limbo SUCKS!).

And my area has a monthly pot luck for vegetarians, vegans and raw foodists and I haven’t gone to a single one. I keep telling myself that there is no point in making friends now since we’ll be moving soon enough. And I do feel that way. But I hope that this doesn’t become a recurring theme for me.

I certainly intend on getting involved when we finally do get settled in somewhere. Hopefully by early 2011.

I want to join a Farmer’s Market committee (or whatever they call it) and maybe start doing some activities in the community. Art and yoga come to mind. It all depends on the location of course.

That’s about it for this morning. Thinking about life and printing off recipes for my binder.

I have been feeling like I haven’t written a heavy post in a long time.

Our family has been, and still is, in some major transitions with work. It has certainly made it more difficult for me to find the time and the state of mind to write the kinds of posts I want to write.

Guerilla Homeschooling has this story about how the bestselling homeschooling textbooks dismiss the theory of evolution and the work of Darwin.

Now I don’t really care what you choose to believe but how much preparation are you giving your kids for the “real” world when you are teaching them to discredit the only credible theory on the origin of life.

I don’t care very much about how we were created and as such I haven’t read much on it and haven’t formed an opinion. But would I purposely teach my kids that the prevailing scientific idea of the creation of the life is a lie? And I don’t really care if you think that creationism is a respectable theory. The truth is that it only holds water (and even there barely) if you already prescribe to a certain set of beliefs. Without that foundation, the theory of creationism, has more holes in than a sieve.

This is a perfect example of why people think homeschooling will hurt kids. It isolates them from “bad” influences and makes them naive to the world around them.

I don’t unschool my kids to protect them but rather to liberate them. To let them learn about what they want to and to let them see the world as it really is. To learn the uncensored versions of things!

I also have started watching a documentary called War on Kids and while I admit that it is focusing on the most extreme of extreme examples of the prison like state of many schools I am still finding it interesting.

I especially like the part about Ritalin. Anyone who isn’t living under a rock should know that Ritalin cause psychosis. That the majority of violent crimes committed by students against parents and other students have been committed by kids on Ritalin. Pretty much all of the school shootings in recent history have been committed by Ritalined kids.

And Ritalin is meant to fix a “chemical” problem. Or in other words it’s meant to fix childhood joie de vivre. This is the real crime.

Here are the best segments of the documentary:

Four million kids on Ritalin in the US!!!

Basically everything from Episode 5 on is valuable. I really like Episode 8. Nine is very good too.

If you hate reading…thank a teacher.

A while ago I was raving about our reuse centre and all of the great crafting supplies we have gotten from there. We have gotten everything from sewing patterns to plaster to paper plates to envelopes for my home made cards to zippers to plastic egg cartons (which I use for mixing paint).

And today I am wanting to rave about our thrift store. Aside from some wonderful resource books I have also found science kits and glasses for my kids. I wanted some glass cups (since I hate plastic so much) for my boys to use now that they are older and have gotten over the butter fingers part of childhood. But I wanted glasses that I wouldn’t mind if they got broken accidentally. They had a piles of glasses at $0.49 a piece. So I bought a matching set of eight and now I can store some of the plastic cups. Also, the plastic cups don’t clean well in my dishwasher and having my boys using glass cups will mean I can clean their cups in the dishwasher. And that saves me time!

One of the science kits we bought was a plant growing kit. Everything was still in the original packaging. It came with “hot house” tubes and peat moss pellets and even plaster for doing demonstrations about how seeds can crack through hard mediums like concrete. There was more to it than just that and it was worth every penny of that $2.99 I spent on it.

You can see a seed in peat above and the picture on the side is the pinto that we started many weeks ago and the other is one of the “hot house” seed things we have growing.

It’s hard to see as it’s in the background but it’ll be the same kind of idea as the time I grew seeds in a ziploc bag.

The other set I picked up was a large chemistry set for five bucks. It has many, many different experiments to try. Everything from basic chemical reactions to testing pH to creating reactions using electricity etc.

I also found three boxes of prepared slides for a microscope. The slides contain bits of plants and bugs. I don’t have a microscope yet but I didn’t want to pass on those slides.

Don’t spill the beans! I had this game when I was a wee child and when I saw it at the thrift store I had to pick it up.


We found this digging kit at Winners for $3 a while back and today seemed like a good day to crack into it.

I kept the big chunks that were leftover from the mold since it was clearly made out of some kind of chalk compound. Now we can reuse it when we start drawing with side walk chalk outside.



    • withoutloveweallperish: 50 books for $10!! As a book lover, that sounds like Christmas come early! Lovely library set up, need to set up one of those for myself!
    • theworldismysoyster: Sure. Just none of my kids. :)
    • goobrobinson: Hi! I'd like to seek your permission if I can reuse one of your pictures for my next post? Specifically the second picture.