Back in the piedmont this week and still dreaming of mountains. I live in a place between the mountains and the beach, and many in my community head to one or the other in the summer months. Me—I’m for the mountains and the lakes over the sand and the waves. Give me the hills and valleys over the stretches of sun and surf.
Around the Web
Beauty in Ordinary Days: Appreciating JJ Heller
Sarah Bramblett ponders the ordinary days of motherhood and how music has helped her appreciate them.
- “Oh, Mom! JJ Heller!” my two-year-old, Shiloh, exclaimed in the backseat as the song shuffled through the speakers. I didn’t know she was listening, much less processing and correctly identifying the singer-songwriter. I was proud, but it made sense. Heller has filled our house with daily anthems, lullabies, anxiety-soothing balms, and beautiful music these last two years.
50 Folktales for Kids from around the World
Erica at What Do We Do All Day shares recommendations for international folktales.
- Folktales are traditional stories that stand the test of time.
Folktales, fairy tales, legends, myths. All of these are are names for a type of story with origins in oral storytelling traditions. The stories frequently include a moral lesson and are ways for each generation to pass on its values and knowledge to the next generation.
Gladys Hunt on Pop-up Books
Pop-up can be fun, but are they the best gifts?
- Pop-up books could be one of those “Fresh Ways to Read” we’re considering in our Honey for a Child’s Heart Read-along this month. They’re clever, but are they always a good choice for gift-giving?
Young Men with Holy Habits
Bobby Scott shares thoughts on raising young men.
- What young men will be, in all probability, depends on what they are now. Young men seem to forget this.
I am a pastor, and my occupational duty requires me to read. So for the past 35 years, I have acquired literally tons of books. My office, my house, and even my bedroom are all inundated with books. Some I remember buying, and some I remember receiving as gifts. I don’t remember whether I received or bought J.C. Ryle’s Thoughts for Young Men, but I do know this: God used it to permanently change me.
Around the Warren
Review: The Labors of Hercules Beal
Millie Sweeny dives in to Gary D. Schmidt’s new novel.
- Hercules Beal is not the strongest kid in his class. He is, in fact, the shortest, still waiting on his growth spurt. He is also, thanks to a drunk driver, newly an orphan. As a result, he has to transfer to a closer middle school for his sixth grade year because his older brother (now his full-time guardian) cannot take time off keeping the family business alive to drive Herc to school and back.
Review: Daughter of Arden: Exile
I’m biased (as the publisher and sister of the author), but I don’t think Miriam Novotny is far off in her positive assessment of Exile!
- C. S. Lewis once wrote that “a children’s story which is enjoyed only by children is a bad children’s story. The good ones last.” I am inclined to agree with him. My favorite books are the ones that I liked at age 12, love at 22, and will probably treasure at 42. They are books like The Chronicles of Narnia, or Little Women, which yield new riches and give rise to new connections with each reading, the books that have sparked countless conversations with my mother. Daughter of Arden: Exile is one such book. Based on the Grimm’s fairy tale “Maid Maleen,” it is the first in a new fantasy trilogy by Loren G. Warnemuende.
Something to Do with Your Kids
For some quiet coloring time this summer, consider printing these animal coloring pages!
Something to Watch
Brett Goldstein talking with Muppets may be my favorite thing.
Thanks for reading. We’re on your side.
–The Story Warren Team