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In Italics–Spring Edition (Book Recs)

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bubbleWe are wrapping up our school year. Lydi has her end of the year program at CC tonight. We only have a handful of math lessons left, and we have finished language arts already. Summer is just around the corner. I spotted a plastic baby pool at a garage sale on my run last Saturday, and later I drove by and picked it up for the girls. They have already put it to good use in the afternoons, and my feisty second-born has already proven she can’t be trusted with a water hose. She lured me over with that mischievous smile and then deluged me with water. I got her back though. 😉

I love summer. I love being outside all day long. I love green grass and the farmer’s market and homemade ice cream. And all that outside time makes for tired littles, and that hour or so when they’re all in their rooms resting and I can read a book on the couch is sweet bliss. A few recent favorites . . .

All the Places to Go . . . How Will You Know? by John Ortberg: This is one of those motivational, kick-in-the-pants, get-you-moving type books, and I loved it. I don’t like to write in books (except my Bible or study books) but I do dog-ear pages that I love, and this one had a bunch of corners bent down by the time I finished. This would make a great graduation gift.

Restless by Jennie Allen: When my friend Heather recommends a book, I read it. Every single time. She has never led me astray. (Except that one time, but we both got a very good laugh out of it, so it was totally worth it.) She told me I had to do this study, and one chapter in I was bawling and texting her to say thank you. There is a book and a study guide. I got the study guide. It is wonderful. Gather a group of girls together and go through this. I’ve been stuck in that I-have-no-creativity-because-my-days-are-filled-with-smushed-Goldfish-and-playdoh spot, and this has been good to start getting me out of that funk. (I also registered for the Visual Storytelling class at the Define School, but more on that later.) This study is fantastic!

Savor by Shauna Niequist: I love everything Shauna writes, and this book is just beautiful. The outside is gorgeous, and Lindsay Letter’s artwork is just perfect. It’s a daily devotional, and I will say that if you have read Shauna’s other stuff there is a lot of repeat writing from her other books. But it looks so pretty on my bedside table, and the poppy seed cake recipe alone is worth buying the book. This would make a great Mother’s Day gift.

The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh: After piles of non-fiction, I was in the mood for a good novel. My friend Amber recommended this one, and I finished it in a day and a half. It is suspenseful, thoughtful and beautiful–some of the best fiction writing I have read in a long time. Bonus: you can check it out from the library.

Secret Garden: An Inky Treasure Hunt and Coloring Book by Johanna Basford: I ordered this for Lydia for her birthday next month and had to hide it in my closet so I wouldn’t be tempted to color without her. Imagine intricate pen and ink drawings that you can color in to create beautiful artwork. I’m excited to spend time with Lydi on this over the summer. (Hopefully, she’ll let me help. Does anyone else find coloring very relaxing?)

Dorie: The Girl Nobody Loved by Doris Van Stone: My mom brought me this one to read. The writing is straightforward, almost like you were listening to your grandmother tell you a story. And the story is riveting. This is one woman’s incredible testimony of redemption, sacrifice and trust in God.

Here’s to warmer days and water fights and farmer’s market peaches–cheers!

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