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On the Bookshelf

I've had a books post in mind for a long time.  I even took pictures last year to do it.  Even now, it feels intimidating to do it.  Let's jump in!

I bought a simple folding bookshelf this past year, which makes me think of Fraggle Rock and Doc's inventions. It was frugal, so it suited me. Most of the books here are ones that are in use weekly. I try to be mindful about having too many books or keeping books that I don't use. I'm a real re-reader, though, so most of my books get referred to or read again on a seasonal or annual basis.


The top shelf is mainly Waldorf books with a few others.  Some are titles I've had a long time and others are ones that I've bought this year from Thrift Books or on Amazon.  I've had great success with penny books on Amazon--several of them have been like new!  I've been able to find books that are no longer in print or are not available in the U.S. brand new, mainly Floris Books.  Here are some of the titles that I have enjoyed especially:

  • American Folk Songs for Children :: I bought a newer used copy of this book as the other one was falling apart.

  • All Year Round :: Through the year of Christian festivals with their history and meaning.  Many crafts and things to span all the years of childhood.

  • The Children's Year :: Wonderful book for learning how to make many, many seasonal crafts and even clothing.  Paper cutting, woodworking, knitting, sewing, felting.  Making this items in this book would yield a very well-rounded crafter!

  • Festivals Family and Food :: Another book that is quite thorough on seasonal celebrations.  Lots of recipes, many including Victoria Sponge.

  • Heaven On Earth :: A lovely book for the at-home parent and child(ren).

  • You Are Your Child's First Teacher :: A classic.

  • A Guide to Child Health :: This is a book from a different perspective.  If you want to know how to make a mustard plaster, this is the book for you. ;)  Also has delightful photos of early childhood.

  • Grimm's Fairy Tales :: Great to have on hand in any home.  Just make sure you find a list of age appropriate stories first.

  • Healing Stories for Challenging Behaviour :: A wonderful book that tackles stories for many common situations--tidying up, separation anxiety, boredom, loudness, death, wild behavior.  The stories are mostly short, so they're easy to read in one sitting.  Also includes writing your own stories.

  • Toymaking with Children :: I have said many times over that you could make the items in this book and be done with toys.  Succinct and informative.

  • Parenting a Path Through Childhood :: I mentioned this one recently.  Really a thoughtful book about the meaningful taks of parenting.

  • The Parent's Tao Te Ching :: I've had this book a long time and it always brings me comfort and inspiration.  You can find exerpts under this tag.

  • Steiner Education :: If you're looking for a comprehensive summary of Waldorf education, including the why's behind it, this is the book.

  • Lifeways :: What a nice book this is, a collection of essays from a group of parents in England in the seventies.  A few are a little heady, but most are comforting and community building.

  • Betty Crocker's Picture Cookbook :: My go-to book for nearly all cooking.  As ficitional as she is, Betty knows how to cook.  Some recipes are dated, but all the rest stand the test of time beautifully and get lots of praise, especially the rhubarb pie.


The middle shelf includes some of my nature books. A fair number sit over on the hutch--field guides, more delicate books. There are a few other books thrown into the mix, too, that might serve our homeschooling years. Numerous titles are library discards or ones from friends who have been clearing out.

  • The Elsa Beskow Baby Book :: Okay, not a nature book, but Laurel's baby book. Very, very sweet.

  • A Kid's Herb Book :: Wonderful ideas and stories for teaching children about common herbs. We used techniques in this book to dye silks last year.

  • The New Games Book :: I've been waiting all my life to use this book. The pictures in it are classic, lots of hippies.

  • Eastern Forests :: A simple Audubon guide that covers plants, animals, insects, and fungi in our part of the US.

  • Appalachian Autumn :: A daily reflection on the coming of Autumn and Winter in a woods in Pennsylvania. This was annual reading for a number of years. I hope to get back to it.

  • We Took to the Woods :: An account of a family living in the backwoods of Maine in the early 20th century. Really, really makes me want to go to Maine. I read this nearly every Summer.

  • Elizabeth Zimmerman's Knitter's Almanac and The Opinionated Knitter :: Two great books for many simple-ish projects. blakdove has loaned me the Opinionated Knitter.

  • 1001 Questions Answered about Trees :: Good trivia and lore.

  • Weaving with Reeds and Fibers and The Indian How Book :: Homeschool aspirations.

  • The Appalachian Trail :: A wonderful photographic account of The Trail from National Geographic.

  • The Appalachian Trail Reader :: Reflections across the decades of folks hiking from Georgia to Maine. When I see thru-hikers walking looking down at space phones now, I feel a lot of the magic has been lost.

  • One Man's Wilderness :: A beloved favorite of mine. I've written about it before, along with some of these other titles. You can find them under the "Reading" tag.

  • The Foxfire Book :: The first in the series. Each of these is full of wonderful information and the whole collection is a treasure.

  • Blue Ridge Parkway Guides :: Written by a park interpreter. Includes back stories for the unique names along the road.

  • Feasts for All Seasons :: This book is full of very fancy recipes. They are sorted seasonally, but this book certainly doesn't match the modern definition of eating in season. My budget does not permit very many dishes, but Vermont Blueberry Grunt is one that I have managed and it was interestingly good!

  • Lichen :: Because, why not?

  • A Walk Across America :: I haven't read this one yet, but Carrie says it is very good.

  • Voices from the Hills :: Writings from and about Appalachia.


And lastly, the Enki shelf.  These are most of the materials for Kindergarten and Grade One.  Enki really is the most complete curriculum.  I am starting preparations for first grade and it looks both exciting and overwhelming.  A couple other titles here: Singing Family of the Cumberlands by Jean Ritchie and Raising Waldorf, which is about building a Waldorf school in CO.

I have a fairly extensive collection of childbirth and breastfeeding books that come out when I have doula clients, but those are few and far between these days.  I also have my leather-bound Little House books that we are reading through right now.  I have joked with Mike that I need the bookshelf that stacks on this one for my birthday, but it's definitely not in the budget.  Willow wants to do that, sweet girl, and give me a few more books.  I'll be happy with a day all together and a trip through the countryside.

And that's it, or all I can stand to do.  My German pancake is ready and I have this morning's raspberries to go with it.


( 1 tree — Plant a Forest )
Jun. 18th, 2015 05:36 am (UTC)
I enjoyed peeking at your bookshelf! After I read the Konmari book on the magic of tidying up, I have been able to let go of the books that no longer "bring me joy" (her litmus test). I love having the books I truly love and use on my special shelf now.

( 1 tree — Plant a Forest )

A Blessed Wilderness

It was just like being in heaven, being in there. In those days there was no road. The park was all a blessed wilderness. I have often thought what a wonderful people we would have been if we had wanted to keep it that way.

~Adolph Murie, biologist, on Denali


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