Our daughter Sophia had her baby. She named her Eloise Victoria. Born 6 lb. 9 oz. she is a tiny baby still - a month later. (I announce it here for those who missed reading the comments added to the previous post.)
|Eloise Victoria - Great Grandma knitted the pink blanket|
Into her imagination and she stored them - held them there for safe-keeping - dreams for her adult life - like a carefully stitched patchwork quilt is held in anticipation in a trousseau.
Sophia even decorates her house like the rooms pictured in Eloise Wilkin's illustrations.
The simplest of books can influence our lives with profundity. A picture book, for instance, has this power because it invites us to look closely at a portion of life. Simple it may be, yet it is never without an opinion.
|Baby Dear - feeding time|
|Baby Dear - walking with our babies|
|Baby Dear - singing to our babies|
And, too, we crave reinforcement toward upholding the value of homemaking. Therefore, what was drawn as a mirror of home-life and childhood in the 1960s is being tapped into by today's busy mothers who secretly desire a career at home. If you are looking for a picture book with a worldview that celebrates the traditional family Baby Dear will be a welcome resource. It is included in the Golden Book collection, Eloise Wilkin Stories. We Help Mommy can be found in the collection also.
|Yours Truly, 1963|
Books That Pamper my Opinions
The same week my daughter emailed me some new photographs of her tiny Eloise I had The Painted Garden open at my summer leisure. It is the diary of the gardener Mary Woodin.
In this book I can walk down Mary Woodin's garden path. Among her brief notes of sowing and harvest, blooms and fruits, birds and butterflies, are selections she uncovered from other gardener's diaries - mostly those from the 19th century. I am amazed at how skillfully she uses her watercolor brush to beautifully portray what is alive and growing in her garden. If you are looking for nature diary inspiration you will find it here.
With my book open to the month of August I see a quote from Mrs. C. W. Earle's Pot Pourri From A Surrey Garden, 1887.
"Of all the months in the year this is the one in which the keenest amateur can best afford to leave home, and if I do not go away, it is the one I can best spare to my gardener for his holiday."
Immediately following comes a sweet surprise. Mary Woodin writes:
A bit of a lull in the garden - an opportune time to give birth! Reuben Charles entered the world safely in the midday heat. He has quickly become accustomed to being my garden companion - his pram [baby carriage] neatly balancing my drawing board, sketching stool, and the jam-jars for water. Parked under a tree he happily applies himself to the subtleties of cedar, oak, or ash. Or sleeps.
I love babies, summer sunshine, and flowers. I love books and the snapshots they give us. I don't mind reading books by those who have a different worldview than I have. I can find them interesting.
I can't help, however, to prefer books that pamper by own opinions. Have you found this to be true of yourself, too?
For you convenience I linked to Amazon: Eloise Wilkin Stories and also The Painted Garden.
This month, at a blog friend's prompting, I hosted a luncheon in my keeping room for some home teaching mothers. I fussed over the preparations for a week beforehand with Dean's help, even buying two new plates to add to my Butterfly Garden set. When the day came, sitting at the table, chatting in the company of kindred spirits, it ended up to be a mini vacation for me - without leaving home. I hope we can do it again, Ladies.
I talked about children's chores in the post: We Help Mommy.
Rosey-cheeked and Resourceful is a blog article that explores the sadly missing phenomenon of safe neighborhood-play. In the days of neighborhood play attention deficit was at an all time low.
Thanks for letting me share this bundle of news, memories, books and articles with you.
Oh. I've been meaning to tell you. Between posts, from time to time, I give articles to The Old Schoolhouse magazine to help spread abroad the good news of Miss Charlotte Mason's practical philosophy. Here are two links to TOS that relate to today's subjects.
A Nature Notebook
The Power of a Picture Book