I love books. No actually I LOVE books. I was an early reader and I love words. I love reading them, writing them, speaking them and even singing them. I love poetry, stories, song lyrics, fact and fiction. I worked for 5 years in our local library before we went WWOOFing and being surrounded by books was a joy.
At every stage of my life I have turned to books to support, encourage, educate and entertain me. As a child my friends were characters from Enid Blyton novels who were three dimensional in a way that TV characters never were. As an adult I still read a constant flow of fiction and miss the people I have come to know through the pages once the book is finished. In parenting, Home Educating, traveling, living off grid, growing food, keeping livestock, learning about permaculture have been books at ever stage to mark my ideas, inspirations and learning journeys.
In the Great Declutter of 2010 when we were preparing to go WWOOFing we all struggled to say goodbye to various things. For me it was books. I sold lots at car boot sales but found myself wanting to hand over more than just the book to the buyer in that grassy Sunday morning pitch. I talked to teachers, parents and children as they handed over 20p and I handed over a book. I held Book Sale Open Days at our house where we supplied a steady stream of tea and cakes and friends came by to peruse our bookshelves and take armfuls away. The remainder of books that we simply could not be parted from went into storage and are now here with us on Rum. Even in our incredibly minimalistic lifestyle in our caravan we still have a three tier bookcase and books in all three bedrooms. Plus we actually have a kindle now….
When we were planning our travels I embarked on a reading adventure first, seeking out as many books as I could find about people treading similar paths. I have a listmania list of the best reads from that period at Life Changing Years
I have spent most of today curled up on the sofa drinking copious cups of tea and reading well over half of The Hand-Sculpted House: A Practical and Philosophical Guide to Building a Cob Cottage: The Real Goods Solar Living Book. It’s been one of those reads so exciting, so inspiring that I have stopped at least five times to read a passage or two aloud to anyone willing to listen. I have been marking pages with post it notes and taking notes to research things. One of those reads where you want meet the author to thank them personally. (I have a habit of thanking authors by email at least, and so far they have all emailed back 🙂 My best author moment ever remains meeting Eric Maddern)
I’m intending to compile another amazon list of all the books currently getting well thumbed as we plan a self build but wanted to share this recommendation.