Author: Shannon Honeybloom
Photographs: Skip Hunt
Publication Date: 2010
**Special thanks to Shannon Honeybloom and Bostick Communications for providing a copy of this book for review. Opinions provided are my own.**
First of all, I must say Shannon has the cutest business cards I think I've ever seen. They are very whimsical with a pink and green dragonfly. OK, yes, I know that is totally off-topic, but I just had to comment on them.
The photograph on the cover reminded me of my grandparents' home, enticing me to turn the cover and see what was inside. Every photo in this book is lusciously colorful, appealing to the senses, and delightful in its simplicity. Just looking at the photos brings about a feeling of relaxation.
In Making a Family Home, Shannon shares how to make a home that is healthy, safe, and appealing to the senses. Shannon uses the Waldorf system of education as a basis for the information she shares in this book. I don't know very much about the Waldorf system, but as a homeschooler I am a strong advocate in making the home a place that promotes learning.
I loved this quote, "Home is the place that forms the basis for a child's future. Home is the place where children are introduced to the world. Home can help children thrive and unfold and gather courage to meet their futures." (10)
Shannon's discussions of learning about home from her grandmother's house reminded me of my own grandmother. My grandmother also grew up during the Depression era. Simplicity, thrift, spotless, with no clutter are great descriptors for not only her home, but a way of life that many are seeking to return to in this cluttered, complicated, materialistic era. I appreciate reading a book about home that is based on these principles of simplicity.
My favorite section of the book was "The Senses and Other Considerations." Making a home a positive sensory experience is something I want to consider more closely. I thought about some of the sensory issues in our family. My husband and I both tend to get "nervous" if there is too much noise over a long period of time. My daughter insists on having everything on a surface or the floor removed before she goes to bed, she also likes to sleep with a textured shirt to hold. Like Shannon, I have found in most of the foods I dislike I think it is the texture that I abhor (such as the squishiness of mushrooms). This chapter provided excellent food for thought.
I appreciate Shannon's focus on using healthy and natural products. I'm sure this is a concern most parents consider these days. She even includes a list of resources on the internet and books.
The reason for a 4 rather than 5 star review is that I wish even more information was included. I would have loved recipes for simple cleansers, more specific ideas for decorating to appeal to children's senses and maybe even more information about children with sensory issues. This wasn't a complaint as much as I enjoyed this book and so hoped for even more. I also wanted to mention that the author and I come from a very different worldview, however, because this was a decorating book that did not affect my appreciation for the information shared.