Dark Glass Ponderings

For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known. -1 Corinthians 13:12

I've been thinking about children's books a lot lately.  Quite natural, since my daughter uses literature-based homeschool curriculum.  I thought I would share each of their picks and a few of my own.

Chris' Picks:

Chris remembers enjoying these fantastical tales of a most adventurous mouse.  He also enjoyed The Hardy Boys.  In junior high he enjoyed Ray Bradbury, The Hobbit, and Sherlock Holmes stories.  As an adult he prefers to listen to his books.

Elizabeth's Pick:
This is our current literature selection and Elizabeth's favorite line is when the horse tells Charlotte "Please don't eat me."  This line is repeated with a chuckle each time we pick up the book.

Noah's Pick:
This changes almost daily, but Elizabeth recently lost a tooth.  Instead of the tooth fairy, we have a tooth pig who comes while children are awake, snorts and spits out money.    

Julia's Favorites:

Harriet the Spy by Louise Fitzhugh
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L'Engle
Trixie Belden series by Julie Campbell
Anything by Beverly Cleary
Baby Island by Carol Ryrie Brink
Mr Bumba Series by Pearl A. Harwood (Anyone else read these?)
The Summer of the Swans by Betsy Byars (I was thrilled to meet her at a signing as an elementary student, see I was a book nerd even then :)
Anne of Green Grables series by L. M. Montgomery

So what were your childhood favorites?  Do you have any favorite childhood memories centered around books?


I loved Judy Blume's Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing and the follow up stories about Fudge, the Nancy Drew series, Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of NIMH.

I read nearly all of the Beverly Cleary books growing up. Ralph Mouse was a great set of books. :)

And YAY for your daughter! I LOVE Charlotte's Web and the first Anne of Green Gables, though I always preferred to listen to that one. For several years I was the only one that ever checked that out from the library. :)

Cut my teeth on Hank the Cowbog books too and soon learned what that phrase means: you've read one, you've read them all. :)

Lots of great kids books out there and most of them are the older ones! You just can't get good clean fiction anymore for young people it seems.

I had to laugh at the "tooth pig" snorting out money!!! I LOVE it! That is so funny. :)

I don't know if I like it yet or not, but I won Tumtum and Nutmeg in a contest and I'm so looking forward to reading it. I'm hoping it's a good book to add to my little boy's library.

I always liked the Ramona books... I love the rhythm and rhyme of Dr. Seuss, but I've never been a fan of the artistry. Does that make me odd?

Charlotte's Web. Now that's a story that I just find sad. I guess I get caught up in the whole spiders die, real pig life on a farm etc. I cannot tell you how many times people asked me if I named my daughter after a book... *sigh* You could say that, but wrong book!

When I was little, my allowance usually went to books, and I used to be so excited to find a new Trixie Belden book in the store. Our library didn't have many, and there was no Amazon or Half.com back then! . . . These are all great reads and bring back fond memories . . . Thanks, Julia!

@Joy, I'd forgotten about Judy Blume's fourth grade chronicles. Those were lots of fun! I've never seen Mrs. Frisby but my husband owns the cheesy movie of it :)

@Casey, Never heard of Hank the Cowdog, but sounds like I didn't miss too much. I think that's what the Mr. Bumba books were for me. I loved the Megan Follows audio version of Anne of Green Gables, but am surprised that you were the only one taking those out.

@Bluerose, This is a Reffner family tradition, the pig that is :). He has fun with it. I've never heard of Tumtum and Nutmeg, has the sound of a sweet story though.

@Margaret, I can understand how you wouldn't be a fan of the artistry. It has a very distinct style to it. Now I would love to know who you named your daughter after. I could say Charlotte Bronte, but I'm guessing maybe that's not right either.

@Renee Ann, Somehow I feel even more akin to you knowing you were a Trixie Belden fan, too. I wish I didn't get rid of those books.

The first book I ever owned was My First Blue Book of Cars. Harold and the Purple Crayon was a favorite of mine for many years. My friend Craig Lynch was a member of the Dr. Seuss Book of the Month Club, which made him impossibly rich in our eyes. I remember spending many rainy afternoon on the floor of his rec room reading to his Down's Syndrome sister and listening to her beautiful laugh.

Purple Crayon was a favorite of Liz's too (from you and Mom, I believe). Thanks for sharing some of your favorites, my list could go on and on.

Julia M. Reffner

About Me

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Christ-loving bookworm & homeschool mom of 2 stealing the rare quiet moments to pursue that all elusive writing dream. I also write book reviews for Title Trakk and The Historical Novel Society.


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