Saturday, March 7, 2015

The Artful Year- a review

I'm so excited to share one of my new favorite books with you! Today we are part of the blog tour for Jean Van't Hul new book. She has written another "soon to be" classic with The Artful Year, published by Roost Books (my favorite publisher!). It celebrates each season and holidays with crafts and recipes for the whole family. The essence is on creating memories and traditions together by following the rhythm of the seasons, which Jean feels are "ideal for introducing children to visual arts and natural science, both of which begin with observation".

Jean and I have been online friends since the early blogging days, and I was honored to contribute to her first book, The Artful Parent. Her blog, of the same name, is a wonderful source of inspiration for how to bring creativity into your children's lives. I love that Jean focuses on projects with an open-ended process. Nature is surely woven in, as well. The Artful Year is a wonderful reflection of that emphasis,  even though there are plenty of crafts that end in a wonderful gift, a celebratory decoration or a wonderful new holiday dish.

The Artful Year is brimming over with activities (175!) for all ages, lending itself well to families with mixed age siblings. It's organized by season, including a chapter on things to do anytime of year. There are reading lists for kids and parents… and there are recipes! I've always believed that cooking with children is just another creative outlet for families, and I love how many fun and festive recipes have been included.
As we push forward the clocks today, I am aware that spring might come after all. I've poured through the Spring chapter with gusto and there are over 10 different kinds of ways to decorate eggs- ten!
You'll  also find nests to make for your eggs and nests to bake and eat! Instructions are simple and straightforward… photographs are inspiring because they're great guides and not too glossy. I've noticed that many craft books for children often have an unattainable quality to their perfect end products. Jean's photographs are real and beautiful.
This book is truly a must have for anyone raising or working with children. If I could only keep a couple of books on creativity with children, The Artful Year would be at the top of my list. It's really that good.
 Here's a little peek:
And if you'd like to see more, check out the blog tour right here and hop on over to some of the other stops. 
Congratulations, Jean! 
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1 comment:

  1. thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on this book! it has been one in my *maybe i should read this next list? :) and i think you just pushed it too the top! especially with the little peaks inside the book.