My sister and I were talking about books her daughter (2nd grade) and my son (3rd) are really loving and then I thought, I should just do a blog post about them because then I’ll remember them myself! So please tune in at the bottom and tell me what you guys are loving reading in your household at these ages.

I’m using my amazon links so that means if you click through and buy anything I get a sliver. Just so you know.


Mercy Watson. This pig is a family favorite and her adventures are ha-larious.

Anything by Kevin Henkes. Especially the Lilly books. Especially this one.

Great Pie Robbery and other mysteries. A HUGE family favorite.

Millie-Molly-Mandy. Girl adventure power tales from the 1920’s.



Pony Scouts. This early reader (level 2) is kinda a chapter series but it’s also just a really fun one for any horse lovers out there. I can’t find a boxed set so I just am contented to buy them one-off used via ‘zon.

Magic Treehouse, of course.

Freddy the Pig. It’s hilarious and my son wolfed it down. There are tons of them so also grabbing them used.

Narnia. Got a used box set and it’s so sweet.

The Penderwicks. Adventure, kids, all good stuff.

American Adventures. He got the whole set as a gift from my family and every single one was riveting and he loved these. He’s a historical fiction guy.

The Borrowers. These little people are fabulous.

Boxcar Children. We keep getting more and more from our local used bookstore. They’re a fast read and not too scary for the little kids to hear aloud, too. Sweet sibling love and mystery and morals to the story.

Doctor DoLittle. FUNNNYYY like my kid keeps giggling aloud.

Encyclopedia Brown series. HE LOVES THESE.

Redwall/Mossflower Series. Mice, battle, epic.

Tales from Deckawoo Drive. A higher reading level with the Mercy Watson characters–just so so great!!


F A I R Y // F O L K  T A L E S

Six Swans. It’s gorgeous and heartbreaking and redemptive all at once.

The Woodcutter’s Coat. Hilarious and fast moving with a great story and illustrations.


Okay I ran outta steam. Your turn!


She IS the mini boss around here.

I’m finding that letting my kids learn and grow means a lot of me observing. Of course I step in and stop the fighting. Like, you know, every other minute or so.

But when no one’s life is imperiled, and I can actually keep my hands to myself, I try to just observe. Observe them laughing and saying funny dramatic off-key things. Observe them negotiating and haggling with a honed craft to make any street vendor proud. Observe them making dire proclamations about whomever they’re hating on that moment (Mama side bar: “we only hate the Devil”).

And when I observe and I take meager mental notes and I pat myself on the back or, just as quickly, kick my own shins as to where they learned THAT, I remember. They are not mine. They are their own. They aren’t accomplishments of mine. They are their own masterpieces unfolding. They aren’t just an inverse of the mirror in Snow White (showing me my worst). They are their own struggling, gasping, reaching spirited person. Prone to virtue and vice. Made in the image of their Creator.

I still have many years of big parenting work ahead. Guiding and teaching, disciplining and snuggling. But today, and maybe for you, too, today I am content to letting them grow with a little water and a little sun and a whole lot of air.

If you haven’t seen that the Blessed is She Advent reflection book is out, you may be living under a social media firewall ;)

My dear friend Shannon Evans crafted this incredible journey for us to take with her, walking along the path of the Magnificat prayer, studying how we are being called to bear God’s image into this world. My amazingly talented friend Erica Tighe designed it. And the cover is as stunning as the words within! A beautiful collaboration. It’s available here

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