Tuesday, May 27, 2014


 I am still Homeschool Atheist Momma!
secular homeschoolSecular homeschool am I am atheist I don’t believe in God doubting god and religion Atheist parenting secular parenting freethinking parenting homeschool secular challenging children

Is anyone here familiar with The Celestial Teapot magazine?
I've been asked to write a parenting column and I just don't know enough about the mag and I'm looking for feedback. I have written a few posts for the website but I'm unfamiliar with the magazine

Have you ever heard of Rich Lyon's podcase called Living After Faith?  Rich is a minister turned atheist who has a huge atheist online community and podcast. 
I discovered the LAF podcast when former minister Rich Lyons interviewed Seth Andrews from The Thinking Atheist podcast, my favorite podcast ever. Rich must have read a comment that I left on The Thinking Atheist Living After Faith podcast on homeschool because he came here to my blog.
He asked me this question:
I'm past the homeschooling age, as my daughter is in her third year of college. But, as an atheist, I am intrigued by the atheist homeschooling movement.

I was very familiar with homeschooling in the xtian circles when I was a pastor, but this is the first I've seen of it in the secular world. The xtians I knew who home schooled did so because they didn't want their kids "polluted" by worldly thinking, and the material and quality of education was not so good. I know a kid who didn't get her GED until she was 22-years-old, because of poor home schooling.
I'm interested in why you homeschool, whether you feel like your kids are getting a better education, and why.

Also, were you once a xtian, and did you start homeschooling when you were in a church?

I love what you're doing, and please understand my questions are not critical. I think there is a wonderful world of discovery for parents who are willing to take the time to find it with their kids. I think you may be on to something that is awesome! 
After I took a moment to pick myself up from my fan girling, my response to Rich was:
Like most people in this country, the first I knew of the new homeschooling movement was the moms in denim, seeking to keep their children out of the majority. Seeking to keep the children's exposure limited to good, clean Christian things. 
Then my best friend started homeschooling. She was a Christian at the time, though she is not one now. From her, I was able to see what secular homeschooling could look like and I loved it!
My own religious history came in phases. My parents were from different religious traditions (Catholic and Methodist) and enjoyed a great deal of stress from their respective families about this. I ASSume that is why our family did not go to church at all when I was a kid. 
I, however, thought that GOOD PEOPLE went to church, so I often went to churches with family and friends. 

Eventually, after my parents divorced, my dad started taking the four of us to Catholic church regularly. I was a very strong Catholic for about twenty years. But I had my doubts and, because I wasn't indoctrinated at an early age, I felt freedom to ask questions of stories and things that I thought were pretty obviously nonsense or that were conflicting. I did get enough of that good Catholic guilt to keep my struggling for a loooong time.
I STRUGGLED with that for about ten years on my own. 
Finally, when my daughter was still a newborn, I remember the night clearly, I was reading the Bible and I realized, I don't believe any of this!!!!!!
It was a wonderful moment for me!
Anyway, so I was an atheist long before we began homeschooling.

I appreciate your questions anytime! I enjoyed hearing you on "The Thinking Atheist" podcast and I'm thrilled that you came to my blog!

Rick Lyons is also on Facebook:  http://facebook.com/LivingAfterFaith
And Twitter:  http://twitter.com/LAFwithme

Have you had any run-ins with online celebs?
OOOOO...I hope Seth Andrews comes here to my blog one day!

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Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Another Reason that I'm Glad I'm not a Camel

I am still Homeschool Atheist Momma!
Secular homeschool am I am atheist I don’t believe in God doubting god and religion Atheist parenting secular parenting freethinking parenting homeschool secular challenging children

OMGosh, I am literally laughing out loud because I am sitting here listening to my son and one of his best friends in the middle of one of their intricate discussions of fantasy and reality. Would you believe that there is a spider that bites a camel, injecting it with some sort of neurotoxin that makes the poor camel unable to move, and then eats the camel alive.


Homeschool kids tend to have the most interesting conversations; I LOVE listening to the conversations when I get the chance.

The other day, while this same best friend was here, I overheard one of the boys saying, I am so joyful; it's just not right!!!!!!

It is a lovely advantage that homeschooled kids have, in my opinion: the ability to spend many, many hours together in complex fantasy worlds of imagination without any sort of outside interruption. In this case the boys have been together for four days and nights. The story lines to their pretending have been so intricate and interesting!

For John, I'm so glad to be home in the US where he can spend this kind of time with other kids who are like-minded in terms of what they enjoy playing.
In order to keep this a positive story, I'm not going to mention the complete demolition of my family room.

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Sunday, May 18, 2014

My "Inside of the Box" Kids

I am still Homeschool Atheist Momma!
Secular ethics morals homeschool am I am atheist I don’t believe in God doubting god and religion Atheist parenting secular parenting freethinking parenting homeschool secular challenging children

It was raining today and we were driving along doing some chores, visiting, and finally heading home. We saw a traffic sign on the side of the road that read Lights on when wipers are on, it's the law. Well I have this THING about being told what to do, especially when ridiculous things are LAW. Not just a good idea. Law.

So I said to the kids In my opinion it's a great idea to have lights on when my windshield wipers are on because it helps us all to see one another, but a law?!  That pisses me off. 
So I turned off my wipers.

The kids started getting nervous.
(I should mention that we were perfectly safe the entire time and I was just playing around.)

Mom, you have to understand, they both said, we are going to drive the speed limit, send cards on birthdays, follow street signs, read directions on recipes, give Mother's Day cards ON Mother's Day!, return library books on time, never drink or smoke, have sex only in committed relationships...and FOLLOW THE RULES!!!!!! We are going to follow the rules, Mom!!!! 
And we are never going to smoke weed!

As they shouting silly things at me I started cringing and saying Nooooooooo in mock anguish. 
Say it isn't so!!! 
Don't follow the rules!
Never send me a card on a holiday!!!! 
Don't fret around the holidays about what to buy me!


It was a riot and we all laughed and enjoyed it.

But isn't that just the way of the pendulum? All of the freedom that I have fought for and demanded during my adult years and my kids are going to swing all of the way over to conservative Rule Followers.  

Ironic, but history shows that these swings are quite predictable.  Damn it all.
Then again, that is what freedom is all about. 

P.S. I do not smoke pot. One day I told the kids that I would love to try LSD or mushrooms sometime. Not at a lifestyle, but as a life experience. They freaked. Of course, I never did it.

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Thursday, May 15, 2014

Be That Person

Do you know that in many other countries they are confused about the whole "coming out" as an atheist thing here in the USA?

Yes, many other countries see America's strong religious movement as quite dangerous, divisive, and an honest threat to peace in the world. While in our country, coming out as an atheist is tantamount to welcoming being ostracized. Other countries find it bizarre that a person finds it necessary to or feels the need to "come out".

And it IS bizarre. It is bizarre that coming out as a rational and logical thinker is considered risky in the US. It is bizarre that being clear about seeing mythology stories as myths is considered so frightening. It is bizarre that people will draw back in fear, both genuinely and metaphorically, when talking about atheism. It is bizarre that being an out and open atheist draws such freaky and strongly negative reactions from people. It is bizarre that science and knowledge are eschewed by so many for a culture of hands-over-ears-blah-blah-blah-I-can't-hear-you. It is bizarre that an entire segment of the population are proud to renounce and shun all things science.

I have had some very NICE people "unfriend" me on Facebook for my atheism...after their shock, anger, and fear expressed itself first, of course. Whatever made you the way you are? You have changed! How can you suggest that kindness has anything to do with salvation? I will miss you in heaven. Astrology means a great deal to me!

That is why I will always summon my courage and be OPEN as an atheist. I have never criticized others for their beliefs, though I think that some of my words have been misinterpreted at times to suggest that I do. 

I believe it is possible and preferred to love all people. I am not a judger. Nor do I live in fear. But mostly, I believe that the world will know peace when all people figure out how to love all people, including those who do not share your world view. 
I believe that true joy is found in freedom.

Join me in this! Be that person who is larger, kinder, and more loving. Be that person who chooses to NOT pass along any words or actions that are not of love. Make it a goal to JOIN with people rather than divide yourself from people. Live with open arms and open hearts. Show that loving one another is the strongest power we have as human beings.


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