Saturday, February 26, 2011

Book Review - Large Family Logistics

I enjoy reading homemaking and organizing books. You may say that I'd rather read about organization then actually do the work to be organized!

While most books are helpful, sometimes I find a book that is so impractical that it borders on ludicrous! A book I read last year was so far removed from my life that I kept reading almost more for the laughs. I wondered if the author, who was an empty nester, had ever lived with little children or could recall a life where bubble baths after dinner and long quite evenings in front the fireplace with a cup of tea are only figments of the imagination.

But the last homemaking book I read, Large Family Logistics was firmly rooted in nitty gritty reality. Kim Brenneman is a homeschool mom, mother of nine and lives on a farm. Several years ago, as a new mom, I enjoyed Kim's website. She completely understands mud, mounds of laundry, and endless meals.

My mom lent me this book, and when my mom tells me a book is worth reading, I read it. Especially since in many ways, the book could have been written by her. My mom is also a mother of nine home schooled children on a farm. Many of the things written in Large Family Logistics were lived out in my home. I know that my life was impacted in ways that I can't even begin to imagine by having a mother who tackled homemaking, even the daunting overwhelming aspects of managing many children, with joy.

I actually think the title could be misleading. While Kim definitely shares from a perspective of a large family, you wouldn't need many children to benefit from it. In fact, I think the one who could find the most value in Large Family Logistics is the young mom just starting her parenting adventure. If you could take to heart the tips and spirit of the book and establish good habits with your children when they are young, it would yield unbelievable benefits for years to come.

Large Family Logistics is divided into two sections. The first deals with the basics of goal setting, time management, attitude, and self discipline. The second section attacks each area of the home, such as laundry, errands, cleaning, meals- and gives practical tips and ideas. The appendix give suggestions if you are overwhelmed and don't know where to begin, or going through a crisis such as illness.

The two areas that stood out to me, either because they were repeated many times, or I just needed to hear them, was my attitude and the importance of training my children. I brought away many practical ideas. One of the reasons I've waited two months before writing a review of this book was to see if the changes were lasting. I revamped my homekeeping notebook and have a simplified housecleaning schedule that is working very  well for me.

But hopefully the most lasting part of the book will be the attitude adjustments. Kim dares to say things like "Learn to love to doing laundry. Replace all the bad feelings and ugly thoughts with Scripture and God-pleasing thoughts. Do the laundry as unto the Lord. You wouldn't complain about doing His laundry, would you?!"

Another quote that keeps running through my head. "When interruptions come, we can say with confidence, 'This is God's will'...Being upset about interrupted plans is, in essence, fighting God...The key is for us to remove 'self' from the center of our world and put God there instead."

See why I had sore toes after reading this book!

If you ever wished you could pick the brain of an experienced mom, I would recommend Large Family Logistics.

What is your favorite homemaking book?

12 comments :

  1. I love this book! A friend loaned it to me...I will probably purchase it for myself!

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  2. Hi Gina,
    I read "Large Family Logistics" and found it to be really helpful. I liked the attitude she gives and encourages for being a mom. I tend to be negative and really hate it. One of the best home schooling/large family books I have read was "Let me be a Woman" and "The shaping of a Christian Family."

    Also, since I'm mentioning books you might enjoy, "Healing and preventing Autism" by Jenny McCarthy. Just as a note I DISLIKE Jenny and do not reccomend her personally, but Dr. Jerry in the book did an awsome job explaining how our body functions and processes things. I think for being healthy it's important to understand how our body works, and this book did a great job.

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  3. AS a mom of eight children all on a farm and homeschooled I can tell you the joys and hair pulling experiences come with having that many children. There are days where having to peel potatoes seem like a foreign trade. But we do it. One joy of large families has to be the closeness of the children.They help as much as possible, but usually in pairs. They always have a best friend.

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  4. You hit upon my favorite parts too- the focus on attitude & that it's just as helpful (maybe more so) if you have just one, two, or maybe are just waiting for children!

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  5. I have always been drawn to observing large families. Being a homeschooling mom, myself, with only 2 children, I am immersed in the world surrounded by large families who homeschool. I truly marvel how it all comes together. I often notice that the children become more mature due to the necessity of handling responsibilities that come naturally because parents are outnumbered in their families. Sounds like a great book.

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  6. I love the book! I bought it when it first came out and am looking forward ti implementing some of her suggestions and examples. Now that I am feeling well enough to plan changes.

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  7. I will definitely check this out. Thanks for the thorough recommendation :)

    And I would love to hear about your revamped routines, sometime.

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  8. Deborah at To A Different Drum posted a review on this book too! Great minds think alike! http://toadifferentdrum.blogspot.com/2011/02/book-review-saturday-edition-5.html

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  9. Thank-you for reviewing a book that I wanted to read. I wonder if I could loan it from the library?

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  10. Thanks for the recommendation! Sounds like a book I need and would enjoy.

    I'm finding myself frustrated lately with this problem: so many good books and so few hours to read them!

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  11. Really enjoyed her blog, even though I am from small family of 2 kids & am still single. Lots of gd Info.

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  12. I have been reading this book too. It is one of the best home management books that I have read. And I have read many! And I, like you, think that this book is good for any wife or mama no matter the size of the family!

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I'm still learning how to be a joyful homemaker and I'd love to hear from you!

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