Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Best Books of 2011

I have been working through the 2011 Reflection Questions from Simple Mom in bits and pieces over the last few days.  One of the questions was about the best books you read in 2011.  Thought I'd share those here.  So, in no particular order, here you go:

Radical by David Platt
This book was given to us as a gift, and I have to admit I was skeptical at first.  I kind of thought "We're already missionaries, so I don't need to read this."  So, for awhile I didn't.  Dan picked it up eventually and read it and then handed it to me and said "you should read this".  So, I did.  Let's just say it was convicting, and one of the things God used to move us on towards our new ministry assignment.

What Did You Expect? by Paul David Tripp
This is probably one of the better marriage books I've read, and I've read quite a few.  I appreciated that rather than giving surface fixes (you should have date nights more often, etc) it got to the root of the problems in a marriage.  Most personally convicting to me was selfishness: in order to have a better marriage, I need to die to myself.   Maybe it's not rocket science, but it was what I needed to hear.

Christy by Catherine Marshall
This was a re-read actually, although it had been many years.  Found it in a box that had been in storage.  Wonderful story, with some wonderful insights that spoke to me as we, like Christy, will be stepping out of our comfort zone into a new ministry.

Loving the Little Years by Rachel Jankovic
I've already read this one twice, and will probably read it again every year as long as there are littles living in my home.   "What did you Expect?" spoke to me where I was at in my marriage, and this one spoke to me where I was at in my parenting.

Girl of the Limberlost by Gene Stratton-Porter
Another wonderful novel.  Once I got into this one I had a hard time putting it down because I wanted so badly to know how everything would turn out.

When Children Love to Learn by Elaine Cooper
Another great read about Charlotte Mason education that re-inspired me.  While written from the perspecive of those working in schools, there is much here for the home educator as well.  And actually, as a former school teacher, I found it very interesting to think through how Charlotte Mason's methods could be used in the classroom setting as well.

Shepherding a Child's Heart by Tedd Tripp
This is the parenting book I wish I had read in the beginning!   I love how he goes beyond just administering consequences, but really helping the child understand the motives behind their actions and their need for a Savior.   He spells out what this looks like at various stages of development as well.  A very thoughtful gift from my Aunt Sandi.

Cycling Home from Siberia by Rob Lilwell
Fascinating travel memoir.   Highly reccommended if you have interest at all in geography or biographies.  I happen to enjoy both.

The Betsy-Tacy Series by Maud Hart Lovelace
I'm planning to read the first 4 Betsy-Tacy (Betsy as a little girl) books to Bethany as read-alouds this coming year, but loved reading the later 6 books (Betsy from 9th grade through her marriage) for myself.  Fun, sweet stories full of the things Betsy learns about herself as she grows up.   (I will admit I still have a passion for reading children's literature!  One of the best parts of homeschooling for me...)

Happy Reading!

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