Sunday, September 28, 2014

Shop Around the Corner


I was reading the book Grandma Moses tonight to our children and was pleasantly struck by two simple paragraphs.

   "One day an art collector from New York, Louis Caldor, passed through Hoosick Falls and saw Anna Mary's pictures.  He liked her scenes of farm life and of days gone by.  He said the cozy pictures made him feel happy and he thought other people would feel the same way." 

    "People liked the honest way Anna Mary painted memories of her heart.  They smiled at scenes of long-ago days-quilting bees, playing in the snow, families getting together on holidays."


I have always enjoyed reading aloud to our children.  Since Dominic was small, we have clocked hours upon hours of reading together.  With each additional child, my elbows, shoulders, and head have grown accustomed to having children clamoring, hoping to catch a glimpse of the illustrations while they listen to me read a new or old favorite literary work.


I have such vivid childhood memories especially about the books I read as a child.  I can remember most titles, but there are a handful of stories I particularly remember loving, but can't seem to recall the exact names of the book to check them out for my children.  The memories of reading and visiting the library came to mind when I read these passages tonight about Grandma Moses.  As the years continue to click on, I know the wonderful stories we read together will become childhood memories of days long-ago and they will look back with such fondness. 

For the benefit of my children, my own records, and anyone looking for some great titles, I hope to record each day (or most) what books we read together under this heading Shop Around the Corner. I couldn't help but naming these featured posts after Meg Ryan's bookstore in You've Got Mail.  Wasn't it enchanting how she loved her whimsical bookstore?  Wasn't it wonderful how she decorated with twinkle lights?  I remember loving the sound the lights made when each bulb tapped the one adjacent to it.  I loved how she knew about each book and was able to help people through her knowledge of books. 

Our Shop Around the Corner 9/28/14:

(While my primary intent is for my own record keeping,  I will put an asterisk in front of the titles I personally would recommend.)

*Grandma Moses by Alexandra Wallner
Martin de Porres by Gary D. Schmidt
**Corgiville Fair by Tasha Tudor (One of my favorite authors.  I could read any of her books on repeat.)
Starry Messenger Galileo Galilei by Peter Sis
*Mark Twain and the Queens of the Mississippi by Cheryl Harness
*Blockhead:  The Life of Fibonacci by Joseph D'Agnese
*The Little Plant Doctor:  A Story About George Washington Carver by Jean Marzollo
**The Mouse of Amherst (about Emily Dickinson) by Elizabeth Spires  (The voracious vocabulary included in the book was outstanding.)
**Mercedes and the Chocolate Pilot:  A True Story of the Berlin Airlift and the Candy that dropped from the Sky by Margot Theis Raven.


  1. Thank you Lindsey for this list! I am always on the lookout for good read aloud books. Reading to my daughters is one of my absolute favorite parts of the day.

  2. Lindsey, why don't you give a brief description of the books you remember. Maybe someone will the know the title(s) and you can share them with your children (and then us). Blessings, Lynette

  3. Lindsay, thank you for the book suggestions. We love books at our house, and I have a passion for great picture books. We've read most of those on your list (in fact, we just, (bittersweet), gave away our copy of Grandma Moses to another family with younger children than ours), but I am requesting from the library the two we haven't. Thank you for your lovely blog!

  4. Oh, I LOVE that you are doing this!! I had to chuckle at your You've Got Mail reference, because I was watching it the other night (for the 20th time) and SWOON every time over that little book shop...I always cry when the shop closes. That movie has also caused me to develop a serious distaste for Barnes and Noble. I wish we had a book store just like the one in the movie close by. I kind of day-dream about opening one like it one day when I'm old so I can read to all the little kids and keep alive the "good books." Thanks for sharing your favorites!

  5. I love reading your posts! As another pregnant mommy (#4), I am curious if you continue to nurse throughout pregnancy and for how long. Trying to make a wise and informed decision :) and would love to hear how you handle it!

    1. Lindsay probably has much better advice, but I have nursed through all my pregnancies, except for my first child. All of my children are about a year apart (we have five children) and they usually wean themselves right before the new baby is born. Just make sure to drink a lot because nursing and being pregnant at the same time requires a lot of fluid. God bless!

      Thank you for posting this book list! We don't have any of these.

    2. Hi Tiffany! It was nice to hear from you. As God saw fit, I am not a good cow. I have always struggled with my milk supply regardless of whatever supplements I take, foods I eat, or what not. I silently mourn each baby that I am not able to nurse longer than I do. I especially like to nurse them through their first winter if possible. Sometimes, it has been and others it has not. I try to nurse each child until they are a year. I have supplemented with formula at various ages most of my babies. Some as early as a few weeks and others at four to five months. Like I said, I try to nurse until they are a year, but some have been weaned at 8 or so months. My heart desires a different scenario, but this is what we have to do. I have been nursing a few of my babies the first few months after finding out we were expecting again. I really have no rhyme or reason. God Bless You.

  6. Do you have any more information about the artwork you posted? I love to have pictures of children being read to in my house. Good luck with the pregnancy!

    1. I do not aside from the fact I pulled them from the internet. I probably should have referenced the source, right? Aren't they lovely? I believe I googled "Mother reading to children." I am sure you will be able to find most of the pictures under images. God Bless You.

  7. Have you seen the Jimmy Stewart movie, "The Shop Around the Corner"? It's great, but there's no books, which is unfortunate. "You've Got Mail" is basically a remake, and I believe the bookstore name is a nod to the original movie.

  8. Thanks for the reminder of Mercedes and the Chocolate Pilot. I meant to order this book last year when my kids got to meet Mercedes. How cool is that? Now we're at another German Reunification Day, so this is perfect.


  9. What a great idea! I am a voracious reader and LOVE reading to my children, but don't keep track of what we read. I really should! I may mimic this idea.

    And you are right about the Read-Aloud Revival podcasts. At first I shrugged them off because I'm such a read-aloud-er, but I've listened to 3 so far and they all have nuggets of inspiration and fresh thoughts--or good reminders!