Travel in the Magic City

This summer I moved to a new neighborhood that happens to be much nearer the freeway that divides my city. My  house is less than a mile from an on-ramp, though you wouldn’t guess it in this quiet and wooded neighborhood; you can̵...

Rituals of Embodiedness

[or “Talking with Our Stuff,” or “Salvation by Coffee”] This spring I had to buy a new coffee mill. Facing the loss of both my electric coffee grinder and my antique hand-cranked mill, I debated about what to buy. The decision was no small ...

Limits and Conscientious Consumption

Lincoln, I was informed when I was nine years old, freed the slaves. I learned that lesson well; I was an excellent student. Lincoln freed the slaves and, in my northern curriculum, that was that. Reconstruction, Redemption, sharecropping, ...

Hospitality at a Fractured Table

“It sure is hard to have people over to dinner these days,” the food writer lamented, at a talk I attended the other week. She told a sorry tale of a dinner party involving two vegetarians, their father who expected to be served meat becaus...

A Footloose Spring Day

On a gorgeous April Wednesday I am filling in as substitute homeschool teacher. We do arithmetic; we do a language lesson about adverbs and Emily Dickinson. Then—did I mention the day is gorgeous? That the air through the window is crisp an...

Homeschool Community

As a homeschooling parent I’m continually frustrated by the difficulty of talking about why we do what we do. Homeschooling is nearly always portrayed as a flight from something: bad influences, secular curriculum, bullying, drugs, vi...