It is my plan for the second Sunday of the month that Operation Clean House kicks into gear. I will post before and after pictures of one area of the house that I’ve managed to clean, and as a reward to myself and to you for looking, I’ll also post a picture of a favorite shelf of books in my house and highlight some of the Good Books on that shelf. SInce I have approximately 250 shelves of books in my house and more areas that need to be cleaned than that, this project should last my lifetime if I choose to continue it that long.
How about “the area to be cleaned” is the same area where the bookshelf is, the corner where I spend a lot of time: my computer corner. As you can see, it hasn’t been cleaned yet, but I’ll spend some time on it today and Monday.
This shelf of books is in my bedroom just to the right of my computer desk. Several of the books pictured are worth a mention.
William Zinser’s On Writing Well is a fine guide to the art of writing nonfiction articles in particular. I should get it out and go over the material in it with Karate Kid who needs to be writing more. I could use some tips on making my writing a bit more sparkle-y and interesting, too.
The Homeschool Journey by Susan and Michael Card makes homeschooling sound so so artistic and beautiful and homely.
There are a couple of very old books on this shelf:
The Mother’s Book is from 1921, edited by Caroline Benedict Burrell and WIlliam Byron Forbush. It’s a collection of essays and advice for mothers from the Jane Addams settlement house era. In fact, one of the articles in the book, “Companionship vs. Loyalty in the Gang”, is by Jane Addams. The advice in the book is sometimes good, but more often it seems rather quaint and even silly to twenty-first century readers. I really ought to excerpt some of the more amusing and telling passages for a beginning history of child-rearing advice in the U.S.
I also have an 1812 fifth edition copy of Noah Webster’s Elements of Useful Knowledge, Volume 1, Historical and Geographical Account of the United States for the Use of Schools. I’m wondering exactly how this little book was used in schools. It contains 529 sections, about a paragraph or half a page each on such topics as RIvers of New York, Settlement of Georgia, Introduction of Printing, Trade of Connecticut, etc. Did students read an assigned passage aloud or recite it back to the teacher or write about a section or what?
The large yellow book called A to Zoo is a discarded older edition of a reference book that lists picture books by subject. It’s useful for finding picture books on a certain subject to read to preschoolers, but it’s somewhat outdated. If you’re interested in having one of your own, you might be able to pick one up at a library discard sale. Or you can get a brand new 2005 edition for $67.00 at Amazon.