I would guess most of you have a never-ending and never completed book pile just like I do. I thought it would be fun to share what’s in my book pile from time to time.
My book budget right now is zero so these are all from the library. I love it when I want a book, I ask them to buy it, and then I get it brand new. Three of these are like that. So here’s what I’m reading at the moment.
The Simple Home and Down To Earth
The Simple Home and Down to Earth are both by Rhonda Hetzel. If you worked your way through my list of Cozy Blogs I’m Reading, you might recognize the name from her blog Down to Earth.
Down to Earth is a guide to simple living.
Down to Earth: A Guide to Simple Living
It covers all the big areas:
- living simply
- ages and stages (I liked this feature – something not usually found in simple living books)
- saving and spending
- organizing your life
- home-grown self-reliance
- the sustainable backyard
I’m especially enjoying this book because Rhonda is retired and living what she is writing about. It’s a different perspective from someone who is in her thirties who hasn’t lived as much life writing about simple living. Maybe because I’m getting older, but I appreciate Rhonda’s perspective even more.
It’s also beautifully designed.
The Simple Home is a month-by-month guide to self-reliance, productivity, and contentment. It picks up where Down to Earth left off.
The Simple Home: A Month-by-Month Guide to Self-Reliance, Productivity and Contentment
It’s organized by month and each month has a theme.
- January – Organize the Year Ahead
- February – Your Money and Your Life
- March – A Food Revolution
- April – Food Gardening in Containers
- May – Laundry Love
- June – Food Preserving and Storing
- July – Simple Home Bakers
- August – Domestic Crafts, Sewing, and Household Linens
- September – The Home Diary
- October – Spring Cleaning
- November – Health and Wellbeing
- December – A Time for Celebration
It’s a lovely book with lots of recipes, ideas, and inspiration.
I think both of these will eventually end up in my personal library.
Homeward Bound – Why Women Are Embracing the New Domesticity
Next up is Homeward Bound – Why Women Are Embracing the New Domesticity. I don’t even remember how I learned about this book, but wanted to look at it.
Homeward Bound: Why Women Are Embracing the New Domesticity
The bound in the title works both ways as in women are heading home and the fear that women may be trapped at home. It’s a secular book and it approaches the subject from the standpoint of whether or not this movement is good for feminism, etc.
The easiest way to explain it is simply to copy the description from both the dust jacket flap and the Amazon description.
What happens to our society as a whole when smart, high-achieving young women are honing their traditional homemaking skills? Emily Matchar offers a smart investigation into this return to domesticity.
Amid today’s rising anxieties—the economy, the scary state of the environment, the growing sense that the American Dream hasn’t turned out to be so dreamy after all—a groundswell of women (and more than a few men) are choosing to embrace an unusual rebellion: domesticity. A generation of smart, highly educated young people are spending their time knitting, canning jam, baking cupcakes, gardening, and more (and blogging about it, of course), embracing the labor-intensive domestic tasks their mothers and grandmothers eagerly shrugged off. Some are even turning away from traditional careers and corporate culture for slower, more home-centric lifestyles that involve “urban homesteading,” homeschooling their kids, or starting Etsy businesses. They’re questioning whether regular jobs are truly fulfilling and whether it’s okay to turn away from the ambitions of their parents’ generation.
How did this happen? And what does it all mean? What happens to American culture as a whole when our best and brightest put home and hearth above other concerns? Does this sudden fascination with traditional homemaking bode ill for gender equality? What role have the media and blog culture played in making domesticity look so darn appealing?
In Homeward Bound, acclaimed journalist Emily Matchar takes a long, hard look at both the inspiring appeal and the potential dangers of this trend she calls the New Domesticity, exploring how it could be reshaping the role of women in society and what the consequences may be for all of us. In riveting interviews with all kinds of people from coast to coast, Matchar examines the motivations of those who have embraced this movement, from Southern food bloggers to chicken-keeping “radical homemakers” on the East Coast to Etsy entrepreneurs in Provo, Utah, to attachment parenting devotees in Chicago, and many more. This groundbreaking reporting on the New Domesticity is guaranteed to transform our notions of women in today’s society and add a new layer to the ongoing discussion of whether women can—or should—have it all.
I’m just getting started, but it’s interesting to read so far. My guess is the author is going to end up not being a fan of this new movement. The Amazon reviews are very mixed and all over the place. So I think it will be interesting reading. This one may end up in my personal library as a reference book.
Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now
Last up is a brand new book that was just released – Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now. Most of the people reading this post will know that I quit Facebook (update: and then Twitter) so this topic has been on my mind a lot over the past year.
Ten Arguments for Deleting Your Social Media Accounts Right Now
It’s different, but it’s very thought-provoking. (It also has language so just a disclaimer on that account.) Some of the arguments I find especially compelling as a Christian include:
- You Are Losing Your Free Will
- Social Media is Undermining Truth
- Social Media is Destroying Your Capacity for Empathy
- Social Media Hates Your Soul
The other six arguments I didn’t share are also excellent, but I don’t want to give too much away. I can’t comment fully on the content. I’ve only skimmed parts since it arrived, but I have found what I’ve glanced at very interesting. I’m looking forward to getting into it.
So there you are! Four books from my book pile that I think are all well worth a look!
I am picking my way through Ten Arguments, and finding them very valid (I wondered how I was going to ask if you’d read it!) … it mostly confirms my good decision to leave Facebook, as I mull over exiting Twitter and Instagram. I check one or the other every few days. I do like the contests I can enter with them 😉
Sadly, that Ten Arguments book is the only one at my library! I am intrigued by the Hetzel books and will save my pennies for them! The domesticity one doesn’t interest me much; am I so old as to not see this as a new phenomenon? 😉
I’m loving the free time to read again. I picked up The Penderwicks At Last by Birdsall (a charming series to read with your C) as well as 30 Minute Money Plan for Moms by Catey Hill. Oh, and a couple of old books on a Christian celebration of Passover seder, so my Bible Study can put one on for the youth group! THAT should be interesting!
I was thinking about you yesterday and wondering how your post-Facebook life was going. That’s funny you are also reading “10 Arguments…”
The domesticity one interests me because of the topics that intersect – homemaking, working from home, women leaving the workplace, etc. That’s all been in my wheelhouse for a long time. The twist that women baking cupcakes and homeschooling is a threat to secular feminism also interests me.
I haven’t read the Penderwicks. David just read The Chronicles of Narnia to Caroline and now they are going through them again. She loved them.
Good to see you!
I love Rhonda’s site, it has long been a favorite. I’m actually linking to it again this Saturday. She is one of my favorite “not a person of faith but excellent” people. She once had my blog as one of her featured blogs when she would put a few each month on her sidebar but I haven’t commented much in a few years.
I am still going through a crisis situation so I pulled Robert Morgan’s The Strength You Need off the shelf to read again. This time slowly. I highly recommend it.
I have been thinking of you daily ever since you mentioned you were going through some very severe trials the past several days. I was not familiar with The Strength You Need so I checked it out. That looks like a very good book.
Praying for you, dear friend.
Those first two books sound good to me!
In my book pile presently are Elizabeth Gaskill’s North and South which I’m am halfway through. I watched an adaptation of it which I enjoyed. Next up will be her book Cranford, so I will most likely watch that too. For my birthday (I just turned SIXTY!) my oldest son gave me The St. Nicholas Anthology that he found in a used book store in Elk Rapids, MI. It was compiled in 1948 from a children’s magazine called St. Nicholas which was founded by Mary Mapes Dodge. (It isn’t a Christmas book.)
Mostly, my to-be-read pile is made up of books I’m HOPING the four reluctant-reader grandchildren will find interesting this summer. I’ve run out of ideas to inspire them, so I have put books in both bathrooms, hoping and praying and dreaming that they will pick them up and be drawn in. (I can dream, can’t I?)
Did you watch this version of North and South? SO GOOD! I haven’t watched it in a while. I need to do so again. I haven’t read the book yet. I haven’t read Cranford either. The St. Nicholas Anthology sounds fascinating!
Caroline isn’t a bookworm, but she is starting to read more. I understand why she doesn’t love it given some of the challenges she deals with, but it’s still hard for me to fathom not loving books. Although, in all honesty, if I had had access to a computer and the web when I was growing up I would have probably wanted to spend a lot of time on it as well. I read many more books before I had a computer. I think it’s part of the progression of modern society.
And congratulations on your big birthday!
Yes! That is the one I watched. I finished the book and watched it again. I found it to be well acted. It stayed very close to the book, not too many changes. Although I do now refer to it as the series were nobody EVER smiled.
Presently I’m re-watching the first three seasons of Call the Midwife, while reading Jennifer Worth’s books. The stories about the workhouses are so heartbreaking.
That’s an interesting observation about the smiling. It is a rather dark and heavy series, but so good. I hadn’t thought about that, but you are right. Now I have to watch it again. LOL!
Is the anthology something like this one?
The same book, yes. But the one I have is from 40 years earlier. It’s SO good!
Dear Sallie … I feel very blessed to have ordered DOWN TO EARTH when it was first published. I love it and it is on my reading table all of the time. I go to it often and I must say I have learned so much from it. I am enjoying your website so very much. I love our humble little home. I love gentle, quiet, peaceful and simple living. My reading table has my Bible and my Daily Devotional waiting for my early morning reading time. I love ‘homey’ books. I have an Amish series that I am reading from our library. Happy Reading ♥ Teri
I think I would pick up Down to Earth many times as well. It is that kind of a book. It sounds like we are a lot alike in enjoying a quiet and simple life. I’m so glad you are here and have been blessed by my site. 🙂