Wednesday, November 6, 2013

WWRW more children's books

Linking up with Jessica at Housewifespice

King David and His Songs

My kids and I really enjoyed this Mary Fabyan Windeatt story of David's life. As Windeatt goes through David's life, she ends each chapter with a Psalm he wrote from the Douay Rheims Bible. The book launched discussions about the Psalms in Mass an answered questions they had on what would have motivated David to write some of them. We were amazed at the incredible life David lived, many times in mortal danger and (mostly) stayed in God's presence, anointed by God yet a wanted man. As we listen to the psalms from now on, we'll have a greater understanding of what was going on in David' life to inspire such an outpouring of emotions from joyful thanksgiving, to profound sorrow for his sins, all with deep trust in God.

I'm not a fan of all the MFW books, but this one had them asking me to keep reading more.

The Kitchen Madonna
I hadn't pulled this one off the shelf in years. I'm wanting to have some help and motivation to create our own small kitchen shrine, and thought this story would be a good motivator.
It's a fairly short story by Rumer Godden about Gregory and Janet, siblings living in London with very busy career parents and have had a run of maids/nannies. The newest one touches Gregory's heart unlike any other person. Their relationship grew when the siblings wanted to hear all about Marta's youth in the Ukraine before her family was expulsed and made refugees. She described, with such longing, a happy place in her kitchen with a shrine to our Blessed Mother and Child Jesus, and awakened Gtegory's imagination and heart.
Gregory and his sister set on a quest to give a little beauty for Marta. {The quest includes disobeying their parents' directions not to leave their area.} Otherwise it is a sweet tale of a little boy opening his heart to help make someone else happy.

The Empty Schoolhouse
Out of print
Natalie Savage Carlson

I pulled this one out when we were discussing intolerance. The story is set in 1960's  Louisiana, a time of segregation. I'm old enough having grown up in Alabama to remember remnant signs of segregation. Fortunately for my children this concept of keeping people physically separate at school and church because of race was strange. 

Emma tells the story of her sister's struggles being integrated into St. Joseph's school when some parents and outsiders fought to intimidate students, parents and teachers to stop the process. Seeing a child not be able to play with friends on a playground because it was the public school for whites, not her school for blacks, is hard to see and imagine.

The story is as much about a sister's love as it is about integration.  Since it's told in the older sister's voice, you hear her pride and love for her younger sister and feel with her when her sister encounters physical and emotional pain. Aimed at 4th to 5th grade readers, and a good read aloud to inspire discussion.

And for Lilly, she wanted to read 
Cyrus the Unsinkable Sea Serpent
By one of my all time favorite children's book author/illustrator: Bill Peet.

I love all Bill Peet books, you can't go wrong, especially if you have love for animals, trains, and or the earth. Peet's use of the English language has enriched my children's vocabulary beyond their years. A great uplifting storyteller and endearing illustrator.

The story of Cyrus is one of my favorites because of the tale of courage and faithfulness of this sea serpent who decided, after being called a sissy, to watch over an ill fated journey of pilgrims off to the new world plagued by dangers, pirates, and the doldrums. He became their guardian and helped them through many dangers at a great cost to himself. The book is a little long for a picture book but a fast paced, interesting tale, with warm pictures keeps my three year old snuggled to my side the entire book. 
"Avast! You lubbers!" It's also a fun book to learn colorful sailing terms. We cheer Cyrus on as we read this book over and over.

I am currently reading Finding Grace  after reading Rebekah's review, and Euly found I am David on the bookshelf and started reading it last night (I'm hoping to add her review next week) and I downloaded Pope Awesome on my kindle to read when I have time to sit and read this week.


  1. The Kitchen Madonna is such a good idea - I'm going to have to look into that more.

  2. I have the Kitchen Madonna too. I'm a huge Rumer Godden fan.

  3. My kids also liked the king David book. I love the idea of the kitchen Madonna! Adding that to my wish list.