My seed catalogs are starting to arrive. After nearly seven years in New York City, I am able to plant and grow beyond what I could cultivate in my kitchen window or in the pots on my tiny terrace now that our family has moved to Oregon. Spring is on its way and my anticipation for days in the garden and outdoor play is growing with every page I turn and with all the seeds I'm circling. Just as important and planning my garden beds though, is planning our book basket. Spring awakens us to new life and fresh hope and our children's minds are waking to new thoughts and ideas as well. Here are ten of our family favorites that are sure to delight their hearts (and yours!) and light their imaginations in the season to come.
Linnea in Monet's Garden
This book follows a young girl to France to experience the art, life and gardens of Monet. It is a beautiful biography of the famous impressionist, full of artwork, nature study, botany and beautiful illustrations. A favorite poured over again and again and that happens to be sitting on our coffee table right now.
Thoughts to Make Your Heart Sing
A devotional by Sally Lloyd Jones, the author of the Jesus Storybook Bible, these short daily readings are perfect for children of all ages and especially delightful or family devotions or personal reading leading up to Easter. Each page will engage the heart and prompt thoughtful discussion in your family.
How Groundhog's Garden Grew
This book is a wonderful introduction for children about how food grows, and teaches them how to begin and keep a garden throughout the year in a story full of beautiful illustrations and a lovely community of characters.
Another book featuring our beloved Linnea, this Almanac is perfect year round, as Linnea shares life outdoors and guides young readers through her own study of nature month by month. There is an educational focus of study, a project and wonderful narrative descriptions throughout. This is a book I use in our home almost weekly and one of the few that I won't lend out for fear I might not see it again.
Girls Who Looked Under Rocks
This book shares the lives and discoveries of six pioneering naturalists from their time as young girls and throughout their careers. It is inspiring for your sons and daughters alike and sparks the imagination toward scientific discovery in children who are naturally curious about all they encounter outside.
A Beatrix Potter Treasury
From Peter Rabbit to The Tale of Two Bad Mice and the waddle of Jemima Puddle Duck, this collection of classic Beatrix Potter is so special and spans her entire collected works for children. What child doesn't want to read about bunnies this time of year?
Keeping a Nature Journal
This book is a classic instructor for older children (and their mamas!) in how to keep a beautiful nature journal through all four seasons. Inspiring to read and simply take in, or to follow along and begin your own beautiful notebook, you will love sifting through these pages.
The Tale of Three Trees
My favorite Easter story, the Tale of Three Trees, follows the dreams and realities of three trees whose lives become a part of the story of Christ. Not to be missed this season!
Make Way for Ducklings
Looking for a permanent home in Boston, this classic story and Caldecott winner shows how a mama and her ducklings make their way through the city to their new home.
After a life of adventure and world travel, Miss Rumphius longs to leave the world more beautiful than when she found it....but how? Barbara Cooney shows us that such a worthy endeavor can be quite simple through this lovely story and amazing illustrations.