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Making a Family Home Paperback – January, 2010


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Product Details

  • Paperback: 90 pages
  • Publisher: Steiner Books; 1 edition (January 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0880107022
  • ISBN-13: 978-0880107020
  • Product Dimensions: 10.8 x 8.4 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (11 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,044,525 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Shannon Honeybloom was born in Florida, growing up there and in Colorado, Michigan, and New York. She has lived in France, Germany, and South Africa. After receiving a B.A. in Classics from the University of Florida, she was a Peace Corps volunteer in Niger. She has an M.A. in Literary Cultures from New York University and an M.S. in Early Childhood Education from Sunbridge College. After working for the Rainforest Alliance, she taught High School English in Brooklyn and Garden City, New York. She has three children and lives with her family in Austin, Texas.

Skip Hunt, born on the wind-swept plains of Oklahoma, is a professional photographer in Austin, Texas. He picked up a 35mm camera in the mid-1970s and has never stopped sharing his unique vision via photographic images. Many moons ago, he was bitten hard by the wanderlust beast and has been canvassing the globe ever since. Visionary artists such as Pete Turner, David Lynch, Cindy Sherman, and André Kertész set Skip's sight on a fine-art horizon early on. His insatiable thirst for rich color and even richer cultural exploration keeps him on the road most of the time. When he's recharging his batteries, he calls Austin, Texas home.


More About the Author

From a communal farm, to an ashram, to an adobe hut and a typical American suburban ranch house, author Shannon Honeybloom has inhabited homes of all shapes and sizes. In her new book Making a Family Home (SteinerBooks, January 2010, $20.00, 978-0-88010-702-0), Honeybloom helps readers figure out how to turn their own shelter into a warm, comforting environment, one that enriches the whole family. Before having her first baby, Honeybloom dove into how-to guides and parenting magazines in search of the perfect "nesting" elements. A former educator, she knew that a child's personal development began at home.

"But I was overwhelmed," said Honeybloom. "And I'm not the only one. Many parents I know are overwhelmed by the wealth of information about parenting and children. Wherever we go, stores urge us to fill our homes with all manner of useful and not-useful objects, baby gadgets and high-tech toys. So for inspiration, I turned memories of my grandmother and mother, and the homes they created." Honeybloom found that her family's time-honored home practices helped her create the peaceful sanctuary she was looking for.

Today, she is a blogger, writer, and speaker on domestic arts, and wrote Making a Family Home for those craving a more nurturing shelter. Honeybloom received her B.A. in Classics from the University of Florida in 1992. Shortly after, she worked as a Peace Corps volunteer in West Africa for two years as an educator in a clinic for women and children. There, she focused on preventative healthcare and nutrition for pregnant women and babies. In 1995, Honeybloom moved to New York state, earning her M.A. in Literary Cultures from New York University in 2000 and her M.S. in Early Childhood Education from Sunbridge College in Chestnut Ridge, New York. It was during graduate school that she first began studying the many facets of "home," and drew on both her research and personal experiences to create her forthcoming book.

A Waldorf graduate, the daughter of Waldorf teachers, and a fourth generation educator, Honeybloom also brings her knowledge of the classroom and childhood development into her work. After writing for the Rainforest Alliance during from 1995-1997, Honeybloom taught high school English both in Brooklyn and at the Waldorf School of Garden City, New York. Today, she lives in Austin, Tex. with her husband and three children.

Customer Reviews

3.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Kevin L. Nenstiel TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on June 8, 2010
Format: Paperback
This is more than a decorating or home-management book: Shannon Honeybloom describes how to craft a home that bonds families, nourishes children, and contributes to the community. She wants you to be healthy and nurturing, not just posh. Yet I note how the two go hand in hand, since the very traits that make a home healthy also make it gorgeous. Honeybloom's jargon-free text combines with Skip Hunt's elegant photos to show how Honeybloom has used modern psychological principles, childrearing values, and the teachings of Rudolf Steiner to design her home, and how you can do the same.

This oversized and dazzling book looks deceptively like a home décor magazine, but it's much deeper than that. Even if, like me, you don't have kids, this book has enough detail to turn your house, even an apartment or a ready-built, into a nurturing home. How to invite people in, like the house to the community, and make the home one in which you and others want to take care of themselves and grow. Though slim and lavishly illustrated, this is not a book to skim casually; take time to sit and read this book in-depth, and you can make your home nourishing and wholesome for yourself and your family.
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20 of 24 people found the following review helpful By sheila on January 21, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book because of some stellar reader reviews, though I was disappointed once I actually had the book in my hands. The writer's style is bland and the photography average. Though there are some good ideas for creating space in the home that is welcoming for both adults and children, what is missing for me is the vital contributions of the children's energy in creating the atmosphere in the family home.This feels more like a book for middle-class housewives who want to keep things tidy than a book about how to involve the whole family in making a creative, dynamic place to live. I only got about two-thirds way through by the time I felt bored with the book.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Sherry Ellis VINE VOICE on June 5, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
In today's hectic world, it is more important than ever to have a home that is restful - a sanctuary from the fast-paced craziness that surrounds us. Shannon Honeybloom takes the reader inside her home and shares what she has done to create a peaceful, loving environment. She methodically covers every room in the house, from the basement to the attic, explaining the purpose of each room and offering tips for making it "homey." These tips incorporate the use of all the senses. Ms. Honeybloom also discusses the outside spaces - the porch, the entrance, and the backyard. Each page of the book contains lovely photographs taken from the author's home, as well as some old family pictures of her grandmother's home.

Ms. Honeybloom also advocates the use of all things natural - from food to cleaners. She offers tips on using essential oils, as well as natural cleaners such as baking soda and vinegar. When discussing toys, she advises using toys that encourage imagination, rather than the noisy electronic toys that kids so often receive. At the end of the book , there is a resource guide which offers websites for finding some of the natural products that are suggested.

Making a Family Home is beautifully done, and its message is much needed. I highly recommend this book.
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13 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Grady Harp HALL OF FAMETOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on June 4, 2010
Format: Paperback
Many authors who create books on the 'how to' approach of altering a living space into a thematic vision of either fantasy, a greening raw earth statement, a revision or recreation of a period in history, or a showcase for enjoying an art collection seem to be salespeople who want to influence the new home owner into creating a mood piece. Along comes Shannon Honeybloom whose message is grounded in the meaning of family and the nourishing of the family experience as envisioned in the home - and voila! - we have a book that is not only immensely readable in its focus on finding a sanctuary for the preservation of mankind, but one that is also joyously colorful, the photography of Skip Hunt gracing every page with not mere snapshots illustrating Honeybloom's points, but serving as a fine art book in color photography. This book is as rewarding a philosophical viewpoint about family as any available today.

Obviously part of the pleasure of reading Honeybloom's prose is that it is informed by years of careful schooling (she holds degrees in the Classics, in Literary Cultures, and in Early Childhood Education and taught highschool English), but also by the fact that she has traveled extensively in such venues as the Peace Corps in West Africa, the Rainforest Alliance, and has lived in France, Germany, many spots in the United States including tiny apartment dwelling in New York City where she started her family and now in Austin, Texas.
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8 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Holly on February 18, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book will be interesting to you if: 1) you are looking for an introduction to Waldorf in the home and 2) you have a young child. I was looking for a more practical book, not a philosophical book. And honestly, I think there are other books which address the philosophical areas better (Simplicity Parenting by Kim John Payne, specifically as they relate to the household, those books by Soulemama).

All of the pictures in this book, while beautiful, appear to come from the same home (perhaps the author's?). If you have a Colonial style home, perhaps this will be inspirational to you. Having a variety of styles of homes would have made it more universal. But again, this was obviously not the author's goal. The author's goal was to impart her philosophy. As long as you buy the book expecting that, you will not be disappointed.
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