I had the amazing pleasure of getting a review copy of Amanda’s new book , The Creative Family, in my mailbox last week. I have been carrying the book around with me everywhere I go, slipping in a few more pages as time allows. Things are underlined, starred, pages are dog-eared and the cover is already tattered from marking my place as I move through her book. It is like holding all the inspiration and ideas from her blog in your hands; having it on your lap to easily flip through or revisit a favorite part. And that is what I’ve found myself doing this past week. Feeling the need for a recharge, I grab her book and open to my place and find a little inspiration or idea that helps me push back into my day.
Amanda approaches motherhood, creativity, and the work of raising our children with tenderness, care, joy and intentionality. And her book is a reflection of that spirit. It is wonderful to read Amanda’s words and thoughts on making by hand, dress up play, sewing with children or falling in love with the woods, and then turn the page to find one of her favorite projects or activities.
The Creative Family, is one of those books I think every mother(and father) needs to read. It is a reminder of the curious, tenderhearted, open minds of our children, and the important task we are given in shaping and guiding their young lives.
Every so often, I’ll read a book and come to a passage or an idea and think, "That, right there, made the whole book worth it." Sometimes I’m tempted to close the book at that place and soak in the words I just read–so that I really remember them. That experience happened to me several times reading this book but the first time was in the beginning, reading Amanda’s thoughts on gratitude. It made me remember that teaching my children gratitude and thankfulness is one of the greatest gifts I can give them. She says, "Practicing gratitude in our families can help our children…giving them a lifelong gift that will nurture all of who they are."
It reminded me of a favorite quote from Wendell Berry’s Andy Catlett that I have scribbled in my journal, "No one who has gratitude is the onliest one. Let us pray to be grateful to the last."
Amanda’s book is everything I expected after being a regular reader of her blog, and more. It is a gift of inspiration and encouragement in the blessed gift of nurturing the creative lives of our children and our families.