Blogging about music, family life, the outdoors, unschooling and everything else

for more than a quarter century

Year: 2012

  • The Twelve Days of Panini

    Erin arrived home for the holidays suffering a sandwich deficiency. At least, there was general enthusiasm for use of the panini press, and when someone (perhaps it was me?) suggested a “12 Days of Panini” celebration over the holidays, she and the other kids all seemed very eager. Food preferences vary widely in this family, […]

  • Bob

    It was the morning before I had to leave for Kelowna to pick up Erin. Noah, Fiona and Sophie had to be got up, the lunches had to be made, everyone had to be fed, coffee had to be made and drunk, suitcases had to be packed for Fiona and me for the overnight, art […]

  • Fear and locked doors

    Dear Ms. School District Superintendant I’m writing to express my distaste for the recent board-level changes in school security policy.  I chose to raise my children in this area in large part because I wanted them to grow up in an environment free of pervasive media-drive fear. Not free of risk, of course: none of […]

  • Matcha White Chocolate Truffles

    Matcha White Chocolate Truffles 1 lb. good white chocolate1/2 cup butter2/3 cup whipping cream1/4 cup matcha powder ~ 1 lb. white chocolate chips or buttons for dipping Melt and stir together the first four ingredients. Chill for several hours. Roll into 1 tsp. balls, dip in melted plain white chocolate. Store in airtight containers in […]

  • Moot court

    Moot court

    Our workshops exploring aspects of law and government have continued since last spring and concluded this week with a moot court. We’ve made a special trip to Nelson for each one, and even though we do far too much driving at the best of times, it’s been worth it. Our Lawyer Mentor has employed an […]

  • Between the subjects

    One of the things I love about homeschooling is the way the boundaries between subjects don’t need to exist at all. I know that many schools pride themselves on making “cross-curricular connections,” but those are more like threads connecting otherwise discrete areas. As homeschoolers we are free to dwell for months in the spaces between […]

  • Fall bits

    Where has October gone? Where has my blogging mojo gone? My additional teaching load, and all the juggling of travel and activities by Noah and Sophie, is taking a toll. Fall was amazing until the rain finally caught up with us. The leaves were a good two weeks later to start turning, and then when […]

  • Bokashi

    Bokashi bin, and wheat-bran starter Okay, it isn’t pretty, but it’s pretty cool. We’ve been outdoor composting for more than 20 years. We tried indoor vermicomposting for a while, but despite our best efforts couldn’t entirely prevent fruit-fly outbreaks. We don’t have a garage, so the worms were on their own outside, and eventually bears […]

  • We Live Here 3D

    Recently Fiona has been fascinated by Vi Hart’s quirky art-in-math videos. She’s made Fibonacci spirals, binary trees, trihexaflexagons and various other doodly-mathy things. Recently she noticed how a particular style of spiral doodle looked a bit like topographic lines on a map. And as she didn’t really understand how topographic lines worked, I explained them […]

  • Suffer-bike-run


    Sufferfest went almost exactly as I expected, except that it was harder, and more fun, and the weather was exceptionally fine. So, not exactly as I expected. But close. The bike ride was long and hard. The 45k included about 1400 metres of climbing. I was worried I wouldn’t finish before the course closed: a […]

  • Sufferfest v2.0

    Two years ago I ran the 25k Sufferfest True Blue trail run. I hadn’t trained specifically for it, though I had been training hard that summer. It was the first year for Sufferfest and I wanted to support the event, just a stone’s throw from my home town. I originally thought to run the 10k […]

  • Bike bridge

    Bike bridge

    Our property is ideally situated to avoid logging, development or loss of privacy. We own a mere 2.5 acres (1.0 Ha) but the surrounding crown land is heavily forested, but steep and creeky — not suitable for logging. Above us runs the highway, and a long way down a 45- to 60-degree slope is a […]

  • Thermos hack: yogurt-maker

    I have a large plastic thermos, and inexpensive item that is world-weary and not particularly water-tight. It has a capacity of about 3 Litres, and is perfect for making a large batch of yogurt for our family. Since we’ve been freezing the local summer fruit bounty, the kids are making a lot of smoothies and […]

  • Swim lessons

    We haven’t felt swim lessons are a necessity, but they’re nice when they work out, and the child is motivated and ready for the input. Fiona has never had any swimming instruction other than guidance from me and her siblings. She has been comfortable in deep water for a year and a half or so, […]

  • End of the school year

    Sophie and Noah both entered high school this year out of a lifetime of unschooling, Sophie full-time in a combination of Grade 8 & 9 (Grade 8 being considered high school here) and Noah part-time in Grade 10. I realize I’ve written almost nothing about their experiences there. All in all I think it’s been […]