Thursday, September 11, 2008


Our morning view in North Carolina

Alright, I'm sure you're wondering if I was on overdrive at the conference or something, what with the pictures of my over-stuffed van, new blog posts appearing every day, culminating in photos of me plucking feathers off a dead chicken. If it makes you feel any better, I'm wondering what's up with me, too. And if I find out, I'll be sure to let you know.

Here are the facts:
  1. The over-stuffed van was from our camping trip to Jesus-Land the Cornerstone Festival. Our van was NOT that full on our way to NC. I repeat - Jonathan did NOT have to breathe through plastic tubing because he was buried under 115 lb. suitcases. This time.

  2. I wrote all those blog posts before leaving for our trip, and scheduled them to post one each day. I repeat - I was blogging when I should have been packing.

  3. My sister - aka the President of the Corporation (ya ya) - made me pluck feathers off dead chickens. Alright, so she didn't make me; but you know how it is, when someone uses that tone of voice that says something entirely different from the actual words they're speaking? "We're having a plucking party. You don't have to come, but you're invited. There's a lot of work to be done. But only if you want. Feel free to come on over. If you can." I read ya, I read ya.

  4. I've finally quelled my gag reflex, and no, the food at the conference didn't help any.

So we're back from our kick-*ss road trip to North Carolina. The drive was beeeeautiful - Jonathan exclaimed, more than once, "I want to LIVE in Tennessee!" - and the conference was... well... life-changing. But if you're going to ask us what Asheville, NC is like, don't bother; we just whizzed right on by. We've traveled a lot this summer and we're .flat.broke. so we didn't build in any extra vacation time on the front or back of the trip like we usually do. I didn't think it was the end of the world.... until....

The author of one of my all-time favorite blogs, 37 days, recently published a book titled Life is a Verb. The premise of her blog and book is answering the question, "What would you be doing today if you only had 37 days to live?" as that's what happened to her step-father - he died 37 days after being diagnosed with lung cancer.

She did a count-down to her book's publication, publishing one reader essay on her blog each day for 37 days. She chose my essay for.... Day One! The final day of the count-down! I was beyond flattered.

But here's a nasty little rub... the author lives in Asheville, North Carolina...!!!! I could've stalked met her! AND, I could've shown up unannounced met her on the day my essay came out! How cool would that have been? All the way cool! Alas, I didn't even know I was within miles of her home until I returned. Rats rats double-rats!

Ah well, the news came at just the right moment. I was wallowing in post-conference pity, that I was no longer surrounded by vibrant unschoolers and was back in, well, a cornfield. (I know, I know) I was having one of those "I look fat in all my photos" kind of moments when I opened the email from Patti, telling me to take a look-see.

Ah, I love the way the universe works! Nothing like a good ol' dope slap upside the head!

Go get yourself one of Patti's books. Your life depends on it. Yes, really. Now Go!


Stephanie said...

Thanks for explaining! I was wondering :)
Hey I live in TN so anytime you come back let me know. We couldn't make it to the conference which really sucks.

I always say if I had to hunt it, kill it, clean it or pluck it I would be a vegetarian.

On my new diet I'm eating mostly fruit and veggies anyway but I still throw in chicken and the occasional burger.

I like meat but I can't do the dirty work :)

Curtis said...

Excellent essay. I've always been that way myself. I write much better than I speak most times. It's just so much easier to find the words then.

We too are still coming down off our conference high. It's amazing how much tougher things are in the real world! Don't forget to drop us a line next time you wander down here to St. Louis!

denise said...

I want to see some pix from the conference! I am really sad we couldn't go but that is far for kids who hate to ride in car still. I am needing some of that life affirming unschooling things are good there are others out there see you are not an alien happy positive life is good experience!!! :)

I loved your essay in 37 days!

Ren said...

You can always move out here ya know...where all the fun unschoolers live!!!;)



But not really.

debra said...

I couldn't figure out how you could do so much posting while leaving for a trip! I'm so glad you were able to go. We were at the UGO (Unschoolers Gathering of Ohio) campout in the beautiful Hocking Hills area of Ohio.
And we'll be going to the Lake Eden Arts Festival in Black Mountain, in October.