What I’m Reading This Week

So many books, so little time!

Today I am cleaning in preparation for tomorrow’s Waldorf Homeschool Day. As I came to the coffee table, I looked lovingly at my knitting (tomorrow…) and stack of books. And since they’ll all be put away tomorrow when you get here  🙂 I thought I’d share. Maybe some of you could read along with me!

Oryx and Crake by Margaret Atwood

  I really LOVED the sequel to this book, The Year of the Flood, which I accidentally read first. Apparently I wasn’t alone in this love seeing as the book has a website and musical. It reminded me a bit of The Fifth Sacred Thing by Starhawk. I am having a rougher time on Oryx and Crake. I think it’s because the main character is a man and the beginning is very bleak. But I’m holding out.

Heaven on Earth: A Handbook for Parents of Young Children by Shafira Oppenheimer


Christian-y name, but actually a nice book about applying Waldorf principles to your home. This book is lovely. I don’t agree with all of her ideas, especially her stance on gun play. It also makes me think I should write a book , I have so many opinions on everything! Here is the description from Amazon.com:

As we witness the shifting of old forms that once stood as the foundation of our daily lives, parents—who must prepare the next generation to meet this changing world—have more questions now than ever before. Although our culture and the nature of the family may be changing, the atmosphere in the home continues to create the foundation of a child’s life. In Heaven on Earth, parent and educator Sharifa Oppenheimer reveals how to make the home environment warm, lively, loving, and consistent with your highest ideals. 

Heaven on Earth balances theoretical understanding of child development with practical ideas, resources, and tips that can transform family life. Readers will learn how to establish the life rhythms that lay the foundation for all learning; how to design indoor play environments that allow children the broadest skills development; and how to create backyard play spaces that encourage vigorous movement and a wide sensory palette. Through art, storytelling, and the festival celebrations, this book is a guide to build a “family culture” based on the guiding principle of love. Such a culture supports children and allows the free development of each unique soul. 


Delta of Venus by Anaïs Nin 


Why ever put this away? It is breathtaking of course, because it’s by Anaïs Nin, my favorite author ever. (Okay, okay, Tolstoy is pretty awesome too. But WAY different.) I was gifted this book on Sunday by new friend and bellydance student Angela Chenus. She looks EXACTLY like Anaïs. 

Some of the stories are really “out there”, and a few even I take issue with. But some of them are, well, delicious

Here is a description from Wikipedia:

“Faced with a desperate need for money, Nin, Miller and some of their friends began in the 1940s to write erotic and pornographic narratives for an anonymous “collector” for a dollar a page, somewhat as a joke.  Nin considered the characters in her erotica to be extreme caricatures and never intended the work to be published, but changed her mind in the early 1970s and allowed them to be published as Delta of Venus and Little Birds”


 The Grand Design by Stephen Hawking

I haven’t even started it yet. But I can’t wait. I love Stephen Hawking so much. I really want a full back piece tattoo of him, but Chris says he won’t like it.


From Magical Child to Magical Teen by Joseph Chilton Pearce


This is a re-read for me, sometimes I just need a reason to keep the teens out of the kennel. My favorite book by Pearce is Evolution’s End.

Success With Houseplants by Reader’s Digest

I have owned this book since my childhood. I am reviewing the section on cyclamen. I cannot keep these beauties alive, yet insist on buying them every year. I am open to suggestions.

Living Cafts, Spring 2011

The beautiful bellydancer Rhea introduced me to this magazine when my baby Méabh was sick in the hospital. I have subscribed ever since. This Spring issue has articles on silk dying (April’s Waldorf day activity) and a daughter’s wedding!

Midwifery Today, Spring 2011, Number 97

I have subscribed to this magazine for 15 years. Just got the new issue today. Can’t wait. Especially the article by the very sexy Gail Tully!

Oh, and I can’t forget, Chris has a book on the table too!:

A World Full of Gods: An Inquiry into Polytheism by John Michael Greer

I’ll have Chris write a review. I know it’s led to lots of discussion here, and that Chris is looking forward to meeting the author at Paganicon next weekend.

Here is the description off amazon.com:

In this book John Michael Greer turns his attention to the intellectual underpinnings and superstructures of the Pagan and magical movements. Pagan religions have tended to be more concerned with practice that with theory and in a system that has no dogma – no legislated doctrine – that is as it should be. Yet as out movement grows and matures, it is inevitable that we will begin to think in a more abstract way about our models and systems. John Michael Greer has provided a primer on the kinds of ideas and themes that must be included in any discussion of the theology and philosophy of Neo-pagan religions.

There you have it, with links even! Read along with me!

What are you reading?


Author: thewitchmama

Melanie Elizabeth Hexen is a midwife, regionally famous bellydancer, homeschooling mother and matriarch of the Many Hands House. She has been a witch for 25 years, and her belief system is currently based on the writings of Terry Pratchett and the teachings of Steven Posch. With her coven, the Prärie Hexen, she is creating the Hexen Tradition of Witchcraft.

3 thoughts on “What I’m Reading This Week”

  1. Wow! interesting books! Some are going onto my “find these!” list! I especially want to read Heaven on Earth… bad enough I may have to just buy it.


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