My experience with alternative-schooling began when I quit high school to unschool in a tent by the beach (sorry for the anxiety, Mom!). The freedom to follow my every educational whim felt invigorating! I wrote stories and poetry, read my way through feminist lit, worked in a pottery studio, and spent my evenings sketching the ocean.
Carrying that spirit to The Evergreen State College, a sort of unschooler’s haven, I was able to craft my own interdisciplinary major around writing, ethnobotany, printmaking, and bookmaking. Studying under Puget Sound book artist Lucia Harrison, the basement print studio became my second home as I toiled for months, setting type and mixing ink, crafting books inspired by the campus's forests and ethnobotanical gardens. On my breaks, you could find me in the Rare Book Room, pouring over the pages of thousands of volumes of artists’ books.
These days, I’m still a plant-loving, writing, paintbrush-wielding bibliophile — add to that the wife of a handsome woodworker and homeschooling mother of two. Our homeschool journey began after a few fruitless years of public school. Our oldest son Townes is, let’s just say, “spirited” — six hours of daily desk-sitting was not his bag! Laszlo, our youngest son, lives with a neuromuscular disease called Spinal Muscular Atrophy and struggled to get the assistance he needed.
Homeschooling has given us the space we need to breathe. Hooray! It’s messy, down-right feral at times — but a beautifully evolving treasure that we hold dear. My best days are spent with my kids, nature journaling by the Salish Sea, digging in the garden, transcribing their wild tales, and building elaborate "book nooks," which are really just living room forts where all the best stories are told (and giggles reign supreme). In recent years, I’ve kept up with my own personal writing in addition to contributing to sustainable living publications, including Motherhood Northwest magazine, on the subject of traversing nature with children. I’m thrilled to have the opportunity to join Brave Writer and to feast with others on the pleasure of language, books, and all things writing!