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Adventures of a stay-at-home, skeptical, homeschooling dad (etc.)



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Carrot Hummus Dip

Basically, this is just hummus but with carrots (and water) in place of the chickpeas. The hard part is getting the right amount of fluid to make it work. I didn't measure anything, so all amounts are very approximate. ...

2012-06-12   [Permalink] #recipe  

My favorite homemade cleaner

I'm a fan of making my own cleaners: I hate the way most store-bought cleaners smell, and to be honest, I am a little scared of what's in them. But before I get into my newest (and, I think, best) homemade cleaner, a quick rundown of the older ones: ...

2012-06-10   [Permalink] #diy   #recipe  

My advice to new parents

Several people I know have recently given birth, so I thought I'd put down some things I have been thinking about for a while. Namely, the topic of advice. As a newish parent myself, I know there is a fine line between "giving helpful and timely advice", and "annoying the crap out of a new parent with useless scaremongering". My usual advice is "do not give or receive parenting advice", but I thought I'd take a minor detour around that for a bit. So now, because I know you care what I think, here is my advice: ...

2012-06-05   [Permalink] #parenting   #dumb-arguments  

Children's religious stories

My daughter is somewhat interested in the Greek myths. She loves hearing about the gods and goddesses and their exploits from some of the more famous stories. It's easy to find books written for kids on the subject too: simpler story structure, illustrations, and the more gruesome bits ever-so-slightly glossed over. I saw three or four suitable books in a single trip to Half Price Books. These books present just the stories as stories and do not try to editorialize or moralize. Also, the stories are pulled out of the source material and re-written to be religiously-neutral, and they do not necessarily follow the rhyme and meter of, say, Homer's texts. ...

2012-06-02   [Permalink] #religion  

Garage sales

Many people love garage sales: You can drive around and find great deals on baby clothes or that potato slicer you've been wanting for so long. Many times, the things offered at a garage sale are items that once served a purpose, but life changed for the owner and now the item is no longer needed. However, there's a darker side to garage sales. Garage sales can also showcase all the misguided purchases a person has made. It is for this latter case that I present this chart… ...

2012-06-01   [Permalink]

A life-changing event, 5 years later

Two weeks after the birth of our daughter, my life changed. OK, my life changed at the birth of my daughter, too, but every parent has that story. This story is different. Other people may share it, but fewer. It is less common and, therefore, maybe of some interest to a few people out there. Or maybe nobody. Maybe it's just me. Who knows. Maybe I'm not actually interested either? I'm digressing: the topic of this article is television. ...

2012-05-31   [Permalink]

Why didn't I think of this craft before?

A few days ago I was refereeing/entertaining/being-entertained-by my daughter and the neighbor boy at the craft table in our garage. They were doing their usual thing of telling each other little kid things, drawing pictures with silly captions, and messing with some stickers. The neighbor boy suddenly stopped and asked me: "How do you make stickers?" ...

2012-05-28   [Permalink] #school   #craft   #diy  

Childhood safety

I'm always trying to walk the line between being completely laissez-faire and being a helicopter parent. I love being laissez-faire and letting kids explore and figure things out by themselves, but I also have a very vivid imagination, and can always visualize what would happen if things went slightly wrong. That visualization usually ends up with a child screaming and a trip to the hospital. I try to remind myself those scenarios are unlikely, and continually repeat to myself "it'll be OK". However, serious childhood injuries do happen, and certain acts and situations do increase their likelihood. So, I came up with a few mental guidelines to keep me focused on the important things: ...

2012-05-26   [Permalink] #parenting  

Doctors are just in it for the money

Pffff! Doctors. Am I right? All in it for the money. Making up diseases and "disorders" so they and their pharma-buddies can sell you the "treatments". Half the time the they sell you something that makes you sick so they can sell you something else to make you feel better. Not a single doctor ever considers nutrition and fitness as a cause for worry. Oh, they may publicly "recommend" eating fruits and vegetables and getting daily exercise, but they don't really mean it. ...

2012-05-16   [Permalink] #health  

Why we're homeschooling.

Though it's still very early in the game (our daughter will be merely kindergarten age), I feel it's important to document our rationale early, both for our benefit and the potential benefit of others, and so we don't have to answer the same questions multiple times. Also, since this is "different", many people will want some sort of justification, and while I don't feel one is absolutely required, we're not completely blind to social norms… so: this article. ...

2012-05-09   [Permalink] #school   #parenting  

Cut the psychoanalysis, Freud

One of the more annoying things about parenting is that if anything about a family's situation is "different" in any way, suddenly that is the "cause" of everything about the children. And by "different", I mean "different than the observer's situation". ...

2012-05-07   [Permalink] #parenting  

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