Sunday, January 20, 2008

Gift from the Sea

The January Carnival of Children's Literature: Book Awards is up over at Wizards Wireless. The carnival highlights medal winning books of 2007. Have fun going through it!

Two books inspired today's post: Out of the Ocean by Debra Frasier, and Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh. Yesterday was clear and sunny- a glassy ocean beachwalk day. Today is cool and gray- a morning to reread my dog eared copy of Gift from the Sea.

Out of the Ocean belongs in every child's collection. It reads like fiction yet contains a glossary and photographs of the flotsam found by the author (or child on her beach walks with her wise mother.) Debra Frasier has prepared a curriculum guide for this book and it's well worth planning out a lesson.

And then there is my beloved Gift from the Sea. From my Oyster Shell I imagine those special shells she collected sitting in a row on her writing desk. A mother of five children, a famous writer, wife, explorer and aviator, Anne Morrow Lindbergh was a remarkable woman. This comforting book is a near perfect read for modern mothers and just as fresh as it must have been when it was first published 53 years ago.

It was a challenge to choose a quote because this book is so seamlessly written. She writes, "One learns to accept the fact that no permanent return is possible to an old form of relationship; and, more deeply still, that there is no holding of a relationship to a single form. This is not tragedy but part of the ever-recurrent miracle of life and growth. All living relationships are in process of change, of expansion, and must perpetually be building themselves new forms. But there is no single fixed form to express such a changing relationship. There are perhaps different forms for each successive stage; different shells I might put in a row on my desk to suggest the different stages of marriage-or indeed of any relationship."

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