The Rhythm of Family: Discovering a Sense of Wonder through the Seasons Paperback – Aug 9 2011
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“This book will fill you with yearning to connect further with nature, yourself, your family, and creativity. It inspires and uplifts with magnificent, evocative photography. Knitting and sewing projects, herbal health care, recipes, seed sprouting. A book of delight for the whole family.”—Juno Magazine (UK)
About the Author
Amanda Blake Soule is the creator of the popular blog www.SouleMama.com. Amanda spends her days with her four young children—making things, thrifting, exploring and being inspired by their coastal Maine surroundings. Learn more about her and find her blog at www.amandasoule.com.
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Top Customer Reviews
I must say, it's a lovely book.
This time Amanda and her husband Steve joined forces to write the book, which is divided into the 12 months of the year. For each month, there is one essay by "Mama," and one by "Papa." These essays were well written and a pleasure to read. In them, the Soules share moments in the life of their family, which have to do with the unique mood of each month.
After each month's two essays, there is at least one "Make" activity and a "Do" activity. The Make activities are some kind of seasonal craft, and the Do ones are simply something you can do with your children. For example, for October there are instructions for making a banner with homemade leaf prints, and then the suggestion of taking a "season's walk" with the children on a favourite trail to observe the changes there since last season.
The book contains quite a decent variety of crafts, recipes, and activities. All of them are pleasingly doable--even the knitting project looks like something I might be able to handle. I have not had a chance try anything yet--but I intend to soon. Some activities I'd love to do: Double thick homemade hankies (with a special bag to store them in), herbal throat lozenges, oat bread...I love her tips on taking a family picnic and celebrating the winter solstice. Especially appreciated by me, bookworm that I am, is the extensive booklist at the back on topics such as gardening, natural healing, and whole foods.Read more ›
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
The essays were like diary entries -- things about their family and experiences. There's some value to this I guess, but I thought the book would be about rhythm in family in general -- not just this particular family's journal of their private adventures. The book should have been called "The Rhythm of Our Family" or something like that.
Each month offers some crafting or cooking idea, but that doesn't add up to much. Far better books exist on crafting with family through the year, connecting with family outdoors, and cooking. For crafts I like "Crafts Through the Year" by Thomas Berger. For outdoor exploration I love "Nature's Playground" - it's packed full of ideas for exploring nature in every season with children.
I get that the projects are supposed to be things that you can do with kids, but if they are that simple I think the book should make up for it in quantity. (The book is divided up into months and each month has about 3 projects/ recipes) I just felt like this book should have been a blog. I don't mean to bash the book, and I hate to actually, but I do feel like I wasted my money.
I want to address the person who was offended by Amanda's chapter on meditation. I am a Christian and Amanda, I believe, is a buddhist. As a Christian, I teach my children to pray and to meditate on the Word of God. Her chapter on meditation, and other statements by Amanda or Steve that clash with my Christian worldview are NOT, for me, grounds for dismissing her book. There are authors who have a worldview agenda when they write a book, and you can usually pick up on it early on. Amanda's books (and blog) do not fall into that category. Her message is clear in all that she does: love of motherhood, love of home, love of children, love of (and respect for) husband, love of creativity, and love of nature. She is a buddhist (I believe) and I am a Christian, yet we are both women who share these loves. I can learn from her without fearing she'll influence my Christian walk, and I can love.
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