Saturday, 28 January 2012

Why I homeschool

When you realize that no one understands, and that there are genuine other world-views (or "plausibility structures"), what do you do? I try to explain.

There are many reasons to homeschool.
Here's a list of 101 reasons, mostly related to the breakdown of morality in government schools.
Homeschoolers do better academically.
Homeschoolers are more appropriately socialized.
Homeschoolers don't have to deal with the government school schedule, PTA meetings, or just plain having to make their children do what somebody else wants.
There's no "homework" or doctor's notes, more field trips and time for "extra-curricular" activities.
Homeschoolers can eat lunch (and breakfast) that agrees with their tastes and health needs.
Homeschoolers can learn at their own pace. The curriculum is really tailor-made to each child.

These are all great reasons, and any one might be enough for someone to make the decision to homeschool.

But to me, these are all side benefits, and I'd homeschool EVEN IF none of them were true.

So why do I homeschool?
Because the Bible tells me so.
Deu 6:4 Hear, O Israel: The LORD our God is one LORD:
5 And thou shalt love the LORD thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might.
6 And these words, which I command thee this day, shall be in thine heart:
7 And thou shalt teach them diligently unto thy children, and shalt talk of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, and when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.

Psa 78:1 Maschil of Asaph. Give ear, O my people, to my law: incline your ears to the words of my mouth.
2 I will open my mouth in a parable: I will utter dark sayings of old:
3 Which we have heard and known, and our fathers have told us.
4 We will not hide them from their children, shewing to the generation to come the praises of the LORD, and his strength, and his wonderful works that he hath done.
5 For he established a testimony in Jacob, and appointed a law in Israel, which he commanded our fathers, that they should make them known to their children:
6 That the generation to come might know them, even the children which should be born; who should arise and declare them to their children:
7 That they might set their hope in God, and not forget the works of God, but keep his commandments:
(emphasis mine)
It's simple, I know. And argument can be made that one can teach one's children about God in the hours after "school" or on weekends, but you can't get around the daily, hourly instruction commanded in Deuteronomy. That is only possible in the homeschool.

This isn't a "personal" conviction, or passion, or calling. It's not personal at all! God's Word is for all of His children, if we will only accept His wise guidance and the benefits that come with it. "2Ti 3:16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:" I'd love to quote 1 Timothy 6:3-6, but that seems a little bit over the top in this application. I do find it interesting to note that Paul, through the Holy Spirit, says it is the dissenters who cause strife - not the ones who insist on purity of doctrine.

I thought I'd talked about this before, but couldn't find the post, so I do apologize if you remember reading about it.

Disclaimer: there are exceptions to most rules, and I do understand that some people simply cannot homeschool, however the exception can't be the majority, and more people could do it if they only would. Disclaimer 2: I understand that not everybody is a Christian, and of those who are, not everyone takes the Bible literally. In those cases, what the Bible says has no bearing and that's their option (to believe or not). There is no merit in obeying a God who isn't believed.

Tuesday, 24 January 2012


How's the weather? It's been pretty warm for January, after a chilly Fall.

Anyway, I got my laptop to come back on yesterday, so I thought I should say hi.

Yesterday we did something new in our quest for health, but I'm trepidatious about making that information public. If you know me on Facebook you can check out my last 2 posts.

Okay, something I can tell you! I bought a used copy of The Maker's Diet and read it. There was a bit too much of personal testimony for my taste, and a little bit of selling his special supplements, but some interesting diet and health information. He suggests a lifetime devoid of sugar, white flour (and generally all grains that haven't been soaked or sprouted), pork, shellfish, and artificial anything. He suggests a two week cleansing diet of limited items, then two weeks of transition, followed by the rest of your life on clean eating. If we were desperate (as the author was when he began his regimen) we might try it, but since we are just fat and lazy we won't.

What we are going to do is stop eating out (haven't been to McDonald's in over a week, and some people are having withdrawals), cut out all pork (I'd stopped for a while, but lately we've been getting bacon and ham), and cut out all sugar. We are looking into options for grass-fed meat and milk, and of course we already have our organic eggs. Since we have quite a bit of bacon and sweets in the house, we decided to keep eating until the 1st of Feb, when anything that is left will be thrown out of given away, and we begin in earnest.

I've tried things before, but this time I think it will work because Bob is behind the idea. Also, it is an attempt to follow God's design for our health, which can only be a good thing.

I didn't intend to write a book review, so I've left out a lot, but I did want to mention that the author (Jordan Rubin) had Crohn's Disease and was unable to absorb any nutrients - he was down to 111 lbs at age 20 - and after following his own diet he was able to heal himself and gain weight. Also, I wanted to point out that the dietary advice is taken from the Bible, followed by modern science, including the research of Dr Weston Price, a dentist who traveled the world in the 30s. I am subscribed to a blogger who always talks of Dr. Price, and publishes traditional recipes. She is at

I had other things in mind, but I guess that will do for now.

Monday, 16 January 2012

Good news

Announcing that we are expecting number eight!
He or she should make an appearance around the end of July, and I'll try to not be late with this one, as we Ned a July birthday, but not an August one.

We are considering a home birth, and have contacted a midwife, but we are a lot farther from a hospital than we were in England, and the midwives aren't as trained here. So we are also considering a hospital birth. If any of my local readers would care to leave a comment, I'd love to hear your suggestions as to a mother friendly birth experience. We hope to tour the local hospitals and make an informed decision, but well have to get on the ball.

And now you know. :-)

Saturday, 14 January 2012


Sorry for the long delay in posting. I've only had my laptop on once since the last post, though I've tried a few times. I'm getting on Facebook and email with the iPad but it isn't easy to type with. So anyway just checking in.

Monday, 9 January 2012

Book Review: Fyodor Dostoevsky

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from the publisher through the BookSneeze®.com book review bloggers program. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255 : “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

If you don't recognize the name Fyodor Dostoevsky, he's the guy that wrote Crime and Punishment and The Brothers Karamazov and a bunch of others. I've heard of these, but haven't read them. Perhaps that is the problem...

This biography is written in a "conversational style" which means that instead of just telling the story of Fyodor's life, it tells of Fyodor sitting up all night reminiscing with his friend(s). Occasionally we are brought back from the stories to witness a cough, a refill, or a reminder from the wife that it's time for bed. The book covers Dostoevsky's life from early boyhood to his death, in snippets - some as short as 2 or 3 sentences. Then at the end of the book, we suddenly have 10 full pages of a single quote, presumably the entire text of a speech given at a Pushkin festival. I admit that I skimmed over this speech, expecting at any minute to return to what I viewed as the story.

I didn't notice any typos as such, but on page 147 the book says Fyodor published his diary for four years, and on the next page it says that he had to stop publishing after just two years. This was the only glaring error in the book.

Overall, I was disappointed and frustrated with this book. I suppose the author, Peter Leithart, is knowledgeable of his subject, but he didn't do a good job conveying that knowledge. I felt, as other reviewers have said, that I came away from the book not knowing anything about Dostoevsky.
Also, I was frustrated with Fyoder being held up as a great Christian thinker when he is presented as a gambling womanizer. Other than his insistence that Russian character is all one with Russian Orthodoxy, we hear very little of his theology, but we hear quite a lot about his infidelities.

To end on a positive note, I now have a much greater interest in reading some of Dostoevsky's work than I had before. So I suppose on that point the book was successful.