Fall Reading Round-Up

This blog was created as a way to catalog my loves of reading, cooking, community work, and the activities of a-trying-to-do-homeschooling person.  So, in the spirit of all of that, here is my fall reading round up.  I’ve really enjoyed some of our/my books this fall.  Many are old favorites with some new ones too.  First I’ll list my books, then the ones I’ve been reading with the kids.

  • The beginners guide to Backyard Chickens by Eric Richardson.  This is one of several “chicken guides” I’ve picked up.  We’re considering taking the plunge next year and getting our own hens.  We’re allowed by our zoning laws and have the room.  I’m just a little nervous about keeping them warm in winter and keeping out predators.  I think I’ve found the coop I want to build so we’ll see.  
  • Kaytek the Wizard by Janusz Korczak.  This book was not a modern day wizard story and therefore didn’t have the ease of reading or typical writing of a new book.  What made it interesting was the author.  Here is a brief bio:
    “Janusz Korczak was the pen name of Dr. Henryk Goldszmit, a pediatrician and child psychologist who famously ran a central Warsaw orphanage on innovative educational principles; when his children were transported from the Warsaw Ghetto in 1942 Korczak insisted on staying with them and died with them in the Treblinka concentration camp. Korczak left behind a large written legacy, including books on education, plays, essays, letters, and of course, novels and stories for children, including King Matt the First. ” My grandmother’s side of my family is Polish and I enjoyed reading this book for its historical content.
  • The Social Media Survival Guide for Non-profits and Charitable Organizations by Sherrie A. Madia, PhD.  Very helpful tool for non-profits trying to get into the social media game.  I will be using parts of this book in my class at Edison Community College.  However, I unwillingly became the permanent owner of this library book when my son spilled my coffee over it.   He was trying to hug me so I guess it’s ok!
  • Happier at Home by Gretchen Rubin.  I didn’t read her first book, The Happiness Project, but this one did appeal to me. However, I found it hard to finish because, like some of Eat, Pray, Love, I got a little tired of the self-focused tone of the writing.  But there are some good parts and some good advice and great quotes from all over the literary map. 
  • The Hobbit by JRR Tolkein.  Need I say more?

Children’s Read-Aloud Books & History Books:

  • This fall we added history to our homeschooling subjects and have been following the Story of the World by Susan Wise Bauer.  Each week we listen to a chapter from the audio version and do an activity and map work from the activity book.  Then we follow up with books from the “literature sugestions” section.  We have loved this program and the follow up books have been great. 
  • One of the favorites from the Story of the World has been the Gilgamesh Trilogy by Ludmila Zeman.  The three books are Gilgamesh the King, The Revenge of Ishtar, and The Last Quest of Gilgamesh.  The illustrations are amazing and  we have all learned a lot about this ancient story.
  • Three Tales of My Father's DragonTree Tales of My Fathers Dragon by Ruth Stiles Gannett. My kids absolutely LOVED this book and I’m so glad I came across it in a reading list as most people nowadays have never heard about it.  It was so sweet.  Here’s a synopsis from Amazon: “The classic fantasy trilogy of Elmer Elevator and the flying baby dragon has delighted children and their parents for generations. Now, on the occasion of their fiftieth anniversary, Random House is proud to bring the three timeless tales together in one beautiful commemorative edition, complete with the original delightful illustrations.  A Newbery Honor Book and an ALA Notable Book, My Father’s Dragon is followed by Elmer and the Dragon
    and The Dragons of Blueland.  Each story stands alone, but read in succession, they are an unforgettable experience.”
  • Trumpet of the Swan by EB White.  I had never read this book and we all loved it.  We laughed and the kids could not wait to read it at night. 
  • Charlotte’s Web by EB White.  Again, my kids love this.  However, we are getting to the end and I am curious to see how they react to Charlotte’s death.  I also found the original cartoon movie at our library which we’ll probably watch this weekend.

Cooking: I gave myself a subscription to Bon Appetit Magazine and just got my first issue-just in time for Christmas cookies. There was also a piece on perfecting potato latkes. I really want to try to make potato latkes for Hannukah this year.  There isn’t a drop of Jewish blood in our family, but I think it would be fun to make these latkes and introduce the kids to some other traditions.  I also have been going back to my copy of Sur La Tables’ Gifts Cooks Love.  I think for my “give-away” gifts I’m going to make their Mexican Hot Chocolate Mix and pair it with these marshmallows!


One thought on “Fall Reading Round-Up

  1. I think the title “Happier at Home” sounds awesome, but if it’s like “Eat Pray Love,” I will not be able to finish it either (which is rare). Right now I’m reading “A Fine Balance,” by Rohinton Mistry (published in 1995)…what an amazing story. It reminds me a bit of “Life of Pi” or “In the Sea there are Crocodiles.”
    We also love Story of the World, and the stories of Gilgamesh! Those marshmallow treats sure look delish. I keep thinking I’m going to make homemade marshmallows. Have you ever? I would like to use a tried and true recipe. ♥

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