Women sometimes do crazy things when we’re pregnant, wouldn’t you agree?
Between cravings and hormones, our behavior can get a little unpredictable.
Over ten years ago, soon after I found out I was pregnant for the first time, I drove 45 MINUTES just to get to the nearest bookstore. (Steve and I lived in lovely middle of nowhere, Texas back then.)
I happily went in, baby Jonathan in utero, and bought Honey for a Child’s Heart: The Imaginative Use of Books in Family Life by Gladys Hunt. It’s a fabulous title I’ve talked and written about dozens of times since then.
With lists recommending everything from starter board books to the best chapter books, I was in heaven reading its pages. I highlighted, underlined, and built up a little home library of children’s classics before I ever headed into the delivery room to bring that baby boy home.
I couldn’t wait to help my new little one fall in love with books.
Fast forward three years to 2007, and we had an unexpected family blossoming under our roof. That first baby arrived right on schedule, but God surprised us by leading us to two other children from the far corners of the earth: Elijah from Liberia and Trishna from India.
I was a new (and definitely overwhelmed) mama, raising global babes (ages 4, 3, and 2) from three different continents. For quite some time we operated in survival mode–and a good day was one in which everyone had eaten, taken a nap, and perhaps read a short picture book together.
But after we began to find our groove, I started to have a new inner question bugging me. We would be an international family forever–how could I teach my kids about the countries that made up our lives?
They weren’t yet old enough to seriously travel, and we couldn’t have afforded that anyway. My search for an answer led me straight back to the bookshelf again.
With the right books in hand, we could read our way around the world.
Fast forward several more years, to 2011, and the experiment was working! I did have kids who were beginning to love books and have a fascination with other cultures, people, and places. I wanted to expand the concept, go deeper with it.
Then an idea came:
What about creating a massive reading treasury that combines these two passions–books and the world? A global Honey for a Child’s Heart, so to speak?
I’ve spent the past FOUR years doing exactly that!
Four years researching over a thousand global titles, requesting hundreds from Interlibrary Loan (my sweet, hardworking librarians never complained!), reading nearly all of them myself to choose the absolute best for my own family and yours, and compiling them into reading lists based on country, region, and age range.
The result? My new book, released in 2016: Give Your Child the World: Raising Globally Minded Kids One Book at a Time.
Think of it like an inspired geography curriculum–one that will take your kids all the way from age 4 through age 12, for just the cost of a single paperback!
Pair it with a concept like Little Passports, and you’ve got the inexpensive makings of a world-loving home right there. That really excites me!
The book also shares our family’s unique story, practical ideas (besides the booklists) to help you create a globally-conscious home, and the power of using story to truly give your children the world.
And in an amazing, only God-could-orchestrate-this divine connection, the publisher and editor for this book of mine?
The SAME ones who worked on that title I drove 45 minutes to buy in 2004!
I’m beyond blessed to be partnering with Sandy Vander Zicht and Zondervan, who also helped Gladys Hunt get Honey for a Child’s Heart into all of our hands and on our shelves decades ago.
4 years down, 1 more to go
This project has taken so long because of all the research involved. (Well, that and the fact that I’m not super-woman!)
Over the next year the book–which contains more than 500 book recommendations at this point–will be revised, edited, and made even more useful for you.
I can’t wait to share more about it, but I’m telling you about it today because I’d love to ask for your help.
3 ways you can get involved
1. Please send up a prayer.
If it ever looks like I’ve got it all together on this blog, come talk to my family.
They’ll tell you that we’ve eaten a LOT of frozen pizza over the past month as the book deadline loomed large, that I completely lost my temper yesterday, and that I occasionally want to quit even the things that I know are mine to do.
In other words, we’re just a wildly imperfect family trying to live out our mission on this earth, which right now includes this book. So I’d be beyond grateful if you’d send a quick prayer that this book would be divinely inspired to help as many families as possible.
2. Become one of my “supporters.”
Do you feel that my blog or book writing has impacted or changed your family’s life in some way?
If so, would you consider joining my official group of supporters?
This would be VERY low maintenance and not a time commitment at all, but occasionally I might ask for your help in spreading the word on social media or in other small ways.
(And I’ll make sure you’re the first to hear updates or find out about little bonuses, too!)
I’ve created a private Facebook group for supporters, and I’d be so honored to have you there. There won’t be much activity in it yet, but definitely more as the book’s launch approaches next year.
If my writing has touched your life, I’m so blessed and humbled by that. Thank you!
3. Pre-order the book!
Pre-orders show publishers and retailers that there is substantial interest in a title, which goes a long way to making a book successful. So if you’re interested, please go ahead and place your order now!
My hope and prayer is that Give Your Child the World provides you with a resource that helps your family fall more in love with books, the world, and each other. Thanks for letting me introduce you to it today!
“The children should have the joy of living in far lands, in other persons, in other times—a delightful double existence; and this joy they will find, for the most part, in their story books.”
~ Charlotte Mason