Does Unschooling Work?

Hvalsey_ChurchRemember Erik the Red, an Icelandic Norseman?  He took some Norse people and settled Greenland, not as hospitable as its name suggests, at about 1000 years AD.  Fascinating story.  They brought Northern European livestock and farming practices.  They settled in, bringing their religion, steep tithes, and bishops.  Greenland’s climate eventually became a bit more inhospitable due to climate change.  Frozen water routes made European trade difficult.  The Norse’s farming practices, both crops and livestock, suffered.  It is believed that the Norse adapted by eating more like the encroaching Inuits, but evidence of severe starvation and stagnation exists.  For 500 years (which sounds short till I realize my descendents have only lived in the United States for probably less than 150 years) they lived in communities on Greenland. Then, their two main settlements KUH-POOF.  Disappeared.

Some scholars think that the Norse disappeared because their environment changed and they refused to fully adapt, choosing to hang onto European identities.  When the end came, they ate their dogs while carrion-hovering flies swarmed in their rooms.  Others believe they slowly migrated out when the rare ship that pulled in to port departed, unable to cope with Greenland and its separation from European culture anymore.

It is fun to think about, isn’t it?  Would you have left on a boat after 350 years?  Or would you have stayed and starved, eating your emaciated cow?  Or would you have befriended the Inuit, finding a life-long partner to hunt and gather with?

Greenland’s old Norse bones are long dry.  Archaeologists are digging them up, bringing us new speculations.  I can’t help but think of the dying out of the original Norse settlements and compare it to our current education system, which has been around far less than 500 years.  Far less than 150 years.  We hang onto our brief past and educational system, tweaking it here and there, while the environment calls for extreme change and letting go.

Why do some people think that school the way they knew it is the only way?  The best way?  Why does anyone in society accept shoving more and more kids into one classroom?  Can they not hear the buzzing of the carrion-eating flies?

Barley and ruminant animals were not suited for or suitable for Greenland.  The current education system is proving its unsuitability.  Drugs, gangs, and violence like permafost, are seeping in.  Teachers have resigned themselves to the mire, giving up.  Common Core won’t help.  Computer labs won’t help.  Offering college classes for credit to high schoolers won’t help.  An ice age has hit and it’s time to eat seal and fish, giving up our milk and barley for sustainable nutrition.

Snow fortLet’s trade in our huge boxes called “school” for real, lasting education.  Where is the fear coming from?  Where is the inappropriate clinging to past tradition coming from?  Why are people afraid of the homeschooling movement?  Take it further, why are most people, even homeschoolers, afraid of unschooling?  Failure shows us there must be a different way.  WHAT is so scary about doing it different?

Today is the final post contributed by Corinne Jacobs, an unschooler.  Click here for the first installment in the series and here for the second.  Does unschooling really work?  Let’s look at what Corinne’s final statements.

Reading, writing, and arithmetic master are not the only concerns about unschooling…

…People wonder whether these kids will ever be able to attend college or get a job, how they will learn to socialize with their peers and whether their parents are just being lazy. Peter Gray’s study (also linked to in the first post titled I Didn’t Teach Them That,) answers the first two questions.

Unschooled children often do choose to join college and they do so by starting at a community college or by merit of their interviews and portfolios. They hold a wide variety of jobs, many of them in creative arts and STEM [science, technology, engineering, and mathematics fields].

Unschooled children are by no means isolated from others in their community. They interact with kids their own age as well as those that are younger and older than them, and are therefore skilled at interacting with others in a normal social setting. (School kids on the other hand socialize in artificial settings where almost everyone is the same age.)

And finally, to the defence of those poor, maligned parents who choose to go the unschooling way – these individuals are incredibly involved in the lives of their children. As per the unschooling methodology, they take pains to give their kids exposure to a wide range of fields, foster a great learning environment and engage them in meaningful conversations. Whenever they notice their kids taking interest in a specific field, they go about providing them with the resources to follow their interests – whether through additional reading material, tools, classes, apps, and websites or interacting with experts in the field. They make themselves available to answer the questions of their children, and to look for answers to those questions they cannot answer. Any parent who does any less has either not understood the unschooling methodology or is merely using it as an excuse to be lazy about their kids’ education.  (emphasis is mine, Terri Fites)

Unschooling, when done the right way, does a lot more than teach kids to read, write and do math. Like the 8-year old who uses his free time making real clocks, and the 7-year-old who writes 1,000 word novels, kids who are unschooled continually show their parents they made the right choice in going the unschooling way.

Author BioCorinne Jacob is a wannabe writer who is convinced that kids learn best when they’re having fun. She is constantly on the lookout for new and exciting ways to make learning an enjoyable experience. Corinne loves all things that scream out un-schooling, alternative education and holistic learning.



I think unschooling is a great tool.  I cannot see myself being a radical unschooler, but I definitely find that we leave large chunks of free-time in our days.  In this time, my children have taught themselves to knit, sew, make Barbie houses, make videos, and shoot bows and arrows.  Whatever your method of schooling, keep your mind open to the good, the bad, and the ugly of what you’re doing.  And, what do you think?  Concerning Greenland, would you stay, go, or integrate?


Cut the Calculus Teacher

Syllable notesHow much like school does school need to be for kids to learn reading, writing, math, and science?  Tell me.  How many square feet do we need?  Are bricks required?  How about double doors?  A gym, even?

No.  No.  Those things aren’t necessities!  Heavens to Murgatroyds!  Desks are.  Can’t learn without a desk, right?  Wrong, silly.  It’s not the desks.  It’s the teachers and the ratios.  When you have one teacher to 27 kids, then real learning can happen.  Forty to one is probably too high.  Twelve to one is not economical.  We can’t afford to have a calculus class with only ten kids.

Oh, wait!  Let’s not forget the computers.  As long as we have computers, we can ditch the books and the calculus teacher, even!  Yes!  Yes!  YES!  Ditch the books!  Ditch the calculus teacher!  EVERY KID NEEDS A TABLET!  They don’t cost much!  No, stupid.  Not a cheap, lined paper tablet.  A mind-sucking tablet.  A teacher-replacing tablet.  Then, they can teach themselves and get college credit for it.  College credit makes you smart!  Guarantees a job, they say, even!

Oh, stop!

If it’s not the desks, gym, books, or teachers, then what is school?  What’s the fuss against unschooling?  Can traditional topics be taught without a curriculum?  Without a teacher?  Today we continue on in exploring unschooling through the kind writings of unschooler Corinne Jacob and the Snagglepuss comments of me (in blue).  Heavens to Murgatroyd!  Let’s get on with it, even!

How Does an Unschooled Child Learn Traditional School Topics?  Can they, even?

Reading: Unschoolers typically learn to read in order to follow their passions – whatever it may be.  (Students with passion?  Is that allowed?  Is that possible, even?) One young unschooler learned to read when he saw his elder brother reading a horror story and he thought it would be cool to spook himself out. Another polished his reading skills as he looked up and read instruction manuals on how to play his favorite video game.  (I’ll bet you could do that on a school tablet, even.) Yet another learned by reading movie subtitles as she and her mother watched movies with the volume turned down while her father slept.

Math: Now this is one subject that most school-going children learn to hate.  (What happened to that passion?  Did it get sent to the principal’s office for PDA?  Did it get squashed out in first grade being forced to tell time and dates over and over–something any reasonable person will learn without formal education, even?)  Unschoolers, on the other hand, learn math as they adapt recipes in the kitchen, calculate player stats and analyse player performance in their favorite sports, play with duel decks, look for bargains, and go shopping.  (Doesn’t this require independence?  I wonder should we foster independence, even?)

Writing: In some cases, unschoolers learn to write out of an interest in writing stories. In other instances, they learn to write in order to communicate with a grandparent through letters (Are they in cursive?  You know cursive isn’t common core.  Exit stage, left!), share information on a topic that interests them or write fan-fiction for their favorite online role-playing game. As for writing form, that is learned not through writing but by having meaningful conversations, reading good material and developing good thinking skills, all of which are fostered in unschooling.  (It’s not fostered by sticking 14 year-old boys and girls in the same classroom?  Smoochie.  Smoochie.)

Spelling: Unschooling parents report various kinds of experiences when it comes to how their children picked up spelling.  (Spelling?  Color?  Colour?  Fiber?  Fibre?  Is it necessary, even?  Do those tablets have spell chek, even?  Gotcha’!)  Some children have a natural flair for spelling. Others seemed to take a long time to develop good spelling skills, but then learned them incredibly quickly when the need arose, such as when they wanted to use big words in their writing or when they wanted to be taken seriously by others in online forums.


Unschooling Architecture” by Shan Jeniah Burton is licensed under CC BY 2.0

(Be careful with those costly school supplies.  Heavens to Murgatroyd!  You might break them, even!)

As for subjects like science and social studies, kids learn them through visiting museums, zoos, and planetariums, exploring nature, reading relevant books that interest them, and playing educational online games…TO BE CONTINUED


Over the last year, I’ve been noticing that I sometimes get in the way of my daughters’ learning.  I help too much.  I micro-manage too much.  I’m practicing butting out.  Cutting out.  Going to cook dinner or something.  School is about education and learning, not about the process.  When school gets in the way of the potential and motivation to learn, it has failed the individual and the society.  And for the record, a live calculus teacher is worth having if for only one student, even.

My apologies on the Snagglepuss humor.  Or is it humour?  My spelling is a little rusty.  Stale, even!  Next and final unschooling post (Thank you, Corinne) we will briefly discuss unschoolers getting jobs, socially interacting, and stigma.

What do you think of unschooling?  Lazy?  Brilliant?  Ineffective?  The tops?  Scary?


I Didn’t Teach Them That

How much do you think school needs to be like school?  I used to think I’d start homeschool each day with the Pledge of Allegiance.  Now I feel lucky if we start the day with a banana to eat and real clothes on.  Curious people ask me about our daily schedule.  I freeze up like they’ve caught me stealing candy at the checkout lane.—  Uh.  Uh.  Learning and teaching happen in this house.  They do!—  But if you casually drop in for only two hours, you’ll leave saying,  “Those people don’t do school.”  Um.  They are right.  Uh.  We don’t do school.  Snagged.

Unschooling.  If Mowgli is left all alone in a forest and no one is around to watch him learn, has he really learned?  Yes, he has.  A fellow homeschooling mom, Corinne Jacob, corresponded with me about educational philosophies, mildewed laundry (place in the sun to remove the mildew smell), and the best way to exterminate a fruit fly infestation (a jar with old fruit in it and covered with a paper funnel).  She loves to ponder education methods and her husband encouraged her to take her head out of the clouds and write about them.  So she did.  You’ll find her articles on homeschool sites and her own Alternative Tutelage.  She personally implements a bit of an unschooling method and offered to write about unschooling for my blog.  I will run her article over 2-3 posts.

As written by Corinne Jacob with sarcastic, italicized comments from the peanut gallery (me) here and there…

Does Unschooling Really Work?

For most people, the concept of unschooling is difficult to digest. Many times, this bewilderment stems from misconceptions.  (Try this one on for size:  “Those people homeschool because they’re too lazy to take their kids to school.”  Really?) In other cases, people are just so used to the system of schooling that they have trouble believing that it can be abandoned completely. Often, it’s a combination of both that causes people to react with shock to the idea of unschooling. But irrespective of the reason behind society’s non-acceptance, it makes life a lot more difficult for unschooling families.

Unschooling1autumn leaves boy” by Philippe Put is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Contrary to popular belief, unschooling can and very often does work incredibly well. (This is a nice article about a man who did some research on unschooling.  Fun to read!)  Unlike what many people think, unschooling parents are not disinterested, unconcerned or unaware of what their kids are learning. In fact, unschooling requires the parents to be far more involved than parents of schooled and home-schooled children. Yes, children are allowed to watch re-runs on Netflix or play pet games online (I swear when I was sick-on-the-couch-pregnant my kids were down in the basement watching American Pie on Netflix…) all day every day if that’s what they want to do. And yes, the kids are actually learning a great deal when they do so. Not sure that makes any sense? It’s natural to be confused, unless you take some time to really understand what unschooling is all about.

Unschooling, also called interest-led learning, is basically student directed learning. Kids learn what they want to learn when they want to learn it. There is no pressure to learn specific subjects or meet any standards. There are no textbooks, classrooms, teachers or curricula. So do these kids learn anything at all? Absolutely.

Any unschooled family will tell you that the kids are learning from the moment they wake up until they fall sleep at night. The only thing is the learning that happens in these households looks nothing like the learning that happens at school. It is joyful, passionate and exciting. It is actively sought out rather than externally imposed. It happens as a by-product of living out one’s childhood rather than as the primary objective behind one’s childhood.

Perhaps you’ve seen glimpses of it in your own life. Like the time you learned how to decorate cakes by watching tutorials on YouTube, simply because you love making beautiful cakes.  (Or the time you realized conventional medicine put your family on 15 prescriptions and reading about and implementing intensive diet change could and did get you off them.  And you’re mad because you were overcharged for a pharmacy and medical school education.)  Or the time you learned a foreign language as a by-product of your constant interaction with the native speakers of that language. Nobody told you what to learn, how to learn it or how much to learn. You learned what was interesting to you and what you thought was useful, and left out the rest of it. Pretty much exactly how unschoolers learn. There is one difference, of course. You have already studied reading, writing, math and the other basic subjects according to the standards set by the state. Unschoolers are allowed to learn even those basic subjects naturally. And that is what people have trouble accepting. What if the kids never learn to read, or write, or do basic math? How will they ever learn those crucial school subjects if no one is monitoring their learning?  TO BE CONTINUED…


The next unschooling post by Corinne Jacob will explore how unschoolers go about learning the material presented in traditional classes.  Personally, I am an eclectic homeschooler, which means I incorporate many methods of having my children acquire a good education.  We unschool in the areas of science, reading, and art; other areas I refuse to leave to their own devices.  However, I am slowly becoming an unschool convert, allowing my children more independence, while keeping tabs on when they need me.

Think about something that you think you are very good at.  How did you get good at it?  By your own motivation?  By an imposing teacher or parent?  By doing it?  Or reading about it?  I’d love to know!  To explore this idea of how far we can allow our children to learn on their own.

Eat right.  Feed your children right.  Their brains are counting on it.  Oil from whole fish and nuts is better than anything fried in vegetable oil.







More Fat Talks and Don’t Be a Tool.

UntitledIf you got no time for silly chitter-chatter, then skip ahead to the summary.  If you do, well, last post I wanted to solidify the organization of saturated, unsaturated, polyunsaturated, monounsaturated, omega-6, and omega-3 in our heads.   To see how all those terms fit together.  They fly around EVERYWHERE, whether you’re perusing the peanut butter label at the supermarket or just the cover of Women’s Health while you wait in line.  If you read any health information from the internet, you DEFINITELY get tangled up in fat terms.

Quick review from someone who learns (and explains) by repetition. 

My apologies if you don’t like repetition.  It’s just how I think.  Always starting at the beginning and building and building.  Some people don’t like it.  They feel kind of belittled.  I don’t mean to do that, but I have to see the whole picture.

1.  Fats can be categorized many ways, just like we categorize people.  We can organize by gender, age, height, weight, skin color, and so on.  And JUST like when we try to box people, when we try to box up fats, the lines get crossed.

2.  One way to organize and box up fats is by whether or not the fat’s chemical bonds are single or double bonds.  Remember, fats are made up of three fatty acids tied onto a backbone called glycerol.  You can think of it like a big E.  That will be sufficient.

3.  Fatty acids are organic acids made up of strings of carbons hooked together.  If the carbons are hooked together by single bonds they are very stable because nothing is being shared and everything is saturated (with hydrogens).  Having to share can create problems in relationships sometimes, even though it provides the best solution.  Like a family sharing a bathroom.  In unsaturated fatty acids, at least one carbon is sharing a bond with another carbon, which makes them less stable than the saturated fatty acids.

4.  Unsaturated fats can be monounsaturated (MUFA=monounsaturated fatty acid), meaning only one double bond.  (Oleic acid is a MUFA in olive oil.)  Or polyunsaturated (PUFA=polyunsaturated fatty acid), meaning “many” double bonds.  Omega-6 (linoleic acid) and omega-3 (linolenic acid) are examples of types of polyunsaturated fatty acids that you hear about like crazy.

Okay.  Set that aside.  I’ll repeat it in another post and build on it.  Now, what’s MCT?

Today let’s figure out where that term MCT comes from!  MCT oil is all the rage.  And you’re told that coconut oil is nectar from the gods because it contains MCTs.  Good.  Good.

But WHAT are they talking about?  How does MCT fit into what we just learned about saturated and unsaturated?

Well, it doesn’t really.  It’s a different way to box up and categorize fats, this time not thinking about double or single bonds between strings of carbons.  Instead, this time thinking about HOW MANY carbons there are in the string!   Let’s get some acronyms out of the way.  Acronyms are killers.

MCT=medium chain triglycerides
MCFA=medium chain fatty acids (6-12 carbons)
LCT=long chain triglycerides
LCFA=long chain fatty acids (13-21 carbons)
SCFA=short chain fatty acids (less than 6 carbons)

So MCT (medium chain triglyceride) simply means a fat made up of that glycerine backbone and medium chain fatty acids on the arms.

And LCT simply means a fat made of that glycerine backbone and long chain fatty acids on the arms.

Short chain fatty acids do not really bond to a glycerine backbone.  So they are simply short chain fatty acids and not short chain triglycerides.

Most natural fats are combinations of all the terms we’ve thrown around so far.  For example, MCTs are not only in coconut products.

Summary for Today

Now you should be able to see a spot on the shelf for each of the terms that are commonly thrown around in health writings.

Think.  Can you now place where omega-3s go in a box?  And how about MUFA?  And PUFA?  And MCT?

I will keep laying out more and more about fats in little pieces.  In the end, what I hope to illustrate, is that for most people, keeping fats as real as possible is the best nutritional plan.  Not isolating and calling out the individual components like we have over the last several decades.  I KNOW there are times when more or less of anything is called for to intervene at times in life, but overall, the boxing up of fats, like the boxing up of people, can lead to broken hearts, brains, and bodies.

Eat real fats.  Eat less processed fats.  Eat your omega-3 as fish or grass-fed meat or fresh flax.  Eat your MUFAs in butter or avocados or olives.  Eat your omega-6s in nuts.  Eat real.

That is key.

When the terms start swirling.  The brain starts whirling.  The experts start shouting.  Diet camps start pouting.  Studies are retracted.  Twinkies– they sound attractive.  Stop.  Don’t throw up your hands and say they’re all crazy.  Just stop.  Eat real food.  Tell them all, doctors and food manufacturers alike:  YOU ARE NOT A TOOL.


We eliminated dairy from our house for many, many months.  Slowly, with experimentation, we have found some sources that agree with most of us in the house.  I appreciate the vitamin K2 and butyrate found in select dairy products that are grass-fed and/or aged, and so I would like some dairy in my kids’ diets.  Dairy is not mandatory for health, and if it causes you symptoms, you have some more work to do before adding it back in.  But if it honestly causes no symptoms on close scrutiny, it adds wonderful flavor to foods and some important nutrients.

I write articles on whole foods living for a fun, quarterly magazine called Molly Green. We get the magazine in print and read it over breakfast. I love the kids to see me reading something tangible and not just reading on The Black Machine (insert Imperial Death March song). This quarter’s article is about different ways that dairy intolerant people may tolerate some dairy: A1 beta-casein versus A2 beta-casein, fat-rich sources versus protein-rich sources, milks from different animals, and fermentation. Click over if you’re interested…

look inside >



Fat Lessons

creamToday I’m going to start a little series.  I don’t know how many posts it will be.  As many as it takes.  And I’m going to keep them short.  They’ll be mini-bite lessons on fats.  (Oils are fats too.)  The kinds of fats you eat can make or break you.  Because sorting out fat terminology drove me crazy, I’ll start there.  Everybody throws these terms around:  saturated, unsaturated, MUFAs, PUFAs, omega-3s, omega-6s, linolenic acid, linoleic acid, MCT, and SCFA.  If my eyes glaze over reading posts and comment threads about fats, I’ll bet many of you out there have the same problem.  Let’s remedy that in little bits.

First off, fats are made of fatty acids, three of them in fact, bonded to a backbone called a glycerol.  Thus you get “TRIGLYCERIDES.”  Fats.

Mostly what health writers are talking about when they talk about “fats,” is the kind of fatty acids that make up the package called the triglyceride.  What kind of fatty acids are involved.  Fatty acids can be saturated.  Or unsaturated.  Or MUFAs.  Or PUFAs, omega-3s.  And so on.

THERE ARE TWO MAIN WAYS TO CATEGORIZE FATS, BY HOW SATURATED THEIR FATTY ACIDS ARE OR HOW LONG THEIR FATTY ACIDS ARE.  This is why it gets so confusing to read health articles on fats.  That and the fact that foods, oils, and fats are made up of many types of those terms I listed up there.  For example, olive oil is a mixture of several different types of fat.  So it gets confusing.

Today we’ll outline the saturation/unsaturation terms.  Later we’ll outline them (rather easily) by length.

Here is the outline for your head.  Don’t think about foods for now.  Foods, natural fats, and natural oils are a mix of all these terms you and I have spinning around our heads.  Today, just think of terminology.  Later we’ll apply it to food.


     I.  Saturated fats:  All carbons are full-up.  No double bonds.  Not much room for chemical reactions to take place.  Stable.  Solid.

     II.  Unsaturated fats:  Some carbons are double bonded, leaving room for chemical reactions to take place.  Liquid.

          1.  Monounsaturated fats  (MUFAs):  Only one double bond so less reactive than PUFAs.  More stable.

          2.  Polyunsaturated fats (PUFAs):  More than one double bond.  This makes them more reactive and less stable than saturated fats and MUFAs.

               a.  Omega-3

               b.  Omega-6

               c.  Omega-9

That’s it.

What do I want you to notice?  I want you to notice that omega-3s are PUFAs.   I want you to notice that saturated fats are the most chemically stable.  Then monounsaturated fats (MUFAs).  Then polyunsaturated fats (PUFAs).

That wasn’t too taxing, was it?  Do your eyes glaze over when you read those fat articles?  Do you wish somebody would figure out fats and stick to their story?  Do you worry about fat?  Do you try to stay low-fat or avoid certain fats?  I’d love to know.  And know why.

Have a good weekend.  It’s Labor Day weekend here, and we have company coming for a real good time!  My children are a little worried, “Mom, I don’t think they’re going to like our food…”  My poor kids.  Traumatized.


Dear God, Please

I always wonder why I ended up with this passion for nutrition that started three years ago.  It was a 90 degree, maybe even a 180–but since a medical doctor SHOULD be interested in all that is health, I’ll say 90 degree— turn from my former path.  It is not something I was ever interested in.  I was interested in finding the best chocolate chip cookie recipe.  Truly.  Truly.  Truly.  But it’s like God grabbed me, like we used to grab kittens we were housebreaking, and rubbed my nose in my mistake on the floor.  Smelly.

She’s Beautiful

When I was a kid, I had a dear friend who was always on a diet.  Remember those tuna can diets?  She exercised a lot too.  Walking.  Running.  Aerobics.  At home.  At the Y.  Exercise.  She was a beautiful, active woman.  Especially when she wore hats.  When she wore a hat, she put movie stars to shame.  Not a ball-hat.  She didn’t wear those kinds of hats.  Nice, church-like hats.  I kid you not, one little boy looked at my friend when we were in elementary school and said, “Wow.  She’s beautiful.”

As I grew with her, her weight increased.  She kept dieting.  She’d cook grand meals, and I wouldn’t see her eat.  I could see just how important losing weight was to her.  I used to always pray, growing up with her, “Please, God.  Please help her lose weight.”  I prayed for her weight for years.  I prayed desperately.  Pleadingly. The prayer of a child.  The prayer of a friend.  Despite her weight and her numerous diets, she kept right on being active.  Her activity was an inspiration to many.  Sometimes she’d lose 20 pounds, and I knew she was on her way!  Then, she’d gain back 30.  Over the years she finally gained back a lot more than 30 pounds.  And we had to be worried about a lot more than just weight.  So worried.

I’d Rather Be Fat Than Keep Trying

Food, which does deserve a high value, has become so cheap, so crappy, so disgusting, so pushed, it is killing us.  Here, eat another cookie.  Here, we don’t have much time, let’s run through McDonald’s.  (Yes, I used to eat here weekly.  And Chik-fil-A weekly.  And the Mexican restaurant weekly.)  And we sit there and ask why we feel so bad.  (Yes, I used to feel exhausted every day with headaches every day.)  We wear our health problems like a badge.  We say, “I’ve tried that diet.  I’ve tried that diet.  I just can’t lose the weight.”  It gets so hard.  My friend told me, “I’d rather be fat than keep trying.”  But consistency requires a lifetime of action.  My house doesn’t stay clean because I clean it once.  The baby’s diaper doesn’t stay poop-free because I change it once.  I’m not a good mom just because I pushed my kids out of my womb one day.

Stick to Real, Whole Foods And Willfully Shun Any Foods Which Lead You Down the Wrong Path.

You do not deserve to hurt so badly from food.  It IS hard.  I know it IS hard.  But keep trying.  Don’t see your failure as an endpoint.  See each day you try anew as a testimony to your stubbornness.  Choose real, honest foods.  Replace dry, hard foods with fresh vegetables and fruits.  Fill your day and life with as many vegetables and fruits as you want.  Even now, I am sitting beside a large tray of peaches and apples.  Toss in some nuts for salt and crunch.  Round out with some high-quality protein as fresh as you can afford.  (I like wild-caught fish, pastured pork, and eggs from chickens who roam free.)  Baked goods with sugar and/or white flour should be exceptionally rare treats.  Baked goods with any kind of flour and sweetener should be non-daily treats.  Root out foods for an undetermined period of time that cause you to over-eat inappropriately or bring you pain.  Cut them off.  Maybe forever.  Maybe not.  One day at a time.

One Good Life

We get one life to give.  Every day I miss who my friend was.  Slowly, she went from active to sitting.  She’d choose not to go out and do certain things because it hurt too much.  Yet, still, just about every day she made time for Dairy Queen or McDonald’s.  My friend.  One of the loves of my life.  Hurting because food gripped her so tightly.  It grips many, many of us tightly.  I’ve learned in this journey the last three years, “You don’t mess with people’s food.”  There but for the grace of God, go I.  Each day I will choose to walk this path of real, honest food as fresh as I can.  Walk with me.  Let’s live the lives we are designed to live.  Forget the guidelines, and just keep it, every bite, as fresh as you can.  Every–darn—bite.  Maybe my words fall on soil that is too hard, too dense to cultivate in my friend.  But maybe not.  Maybe my words aren’t meant for her.  Maybe they were meant for you.  Let’s choose to live.  Try again.  Today.


PS:  Where I used to see the label as “bad” or “unhealthy,” I now see the danger that lurks behind the food and its effects on cells.  For French fries from fast-food joints, I see destroyed oil getting incorporated into cells.  For dry, processed foods like crackers and chips, I see no fresh source of nutrients and supplementation with vitamins not physiologically compatible with proper cellular function.  I see FUNCTION (or loss of function, accurately) as the problem, not FAT.