Saturday, March 31, 2007

MaryJane's Ideabook.Cookbook.Lifebook, a review

I came home from the library last week with an arm full of absolutely gorgeous decorating and cooking books. They are my "take me away from it all" books.

They do get written in my book diary (listing all the books I'm reading this year) but mostly I look at the pretty pictures and copy a few recipes.

The exception from this stack of books is MaryJane's Ideabook.Cookbook.Lifebook. I am thoroughly enjoying reading through the prose as well as all the delicious pictures. Even though, as my daughter would say, we're not "outdoor kinda' girls", I do enjoy the world MaryJane creates. It's much like the vintage style I surround myself with in my home and garden.

The only thing I haven't cared for in her magazine is when she gives recipes where you must use products she sells to prepare. Well, in this book (that I've read so far), she recommends her products but also gives the recipe for you to make it "from scratch".

Now, for those who care about such things, MaryJane is definitely not an evangelical Christian! In the same way I have learned so much from people like Tasha Tudor, Julia Child, Martha Stewart, etc., I can glean a lot of wisdom and advice from this book. It is loaded with practical information about cooking, sewing, gardening, etc.

For instance, I don't agree with Mormon "theology" but Beverly Nye is second (only to my mother-in-law) in whose advice on cooking and recipes I've adapted through the years. I'm not going to these women for spiritual advice, I want the practical knowledge they give to me.

If I want good Christian counsel on how to live my life as well as decorate and cook, I turn to Edith Schaeffer, Emily Barnes, and a shelf full of books by other Christian women whom I admire. I'm giving it three teacups out of four.

That leads me to another book I'll recommend right now and do a more "formal" review for in May. I was contacted by Lynn Bowen Walker to see if I'd be willing to read her book called Queen of the Castle: 52 Weeks of Encouragement for the Uninspired, Domestically Challenged or Just Plain Tired. How could I resist a title like that? :) Lynn is bringing together bloggers to review her book through the Month of May. Well, her book arrived in the mail yesterday afternoon and I skimmed it quickly when I opened the package. Hmmm...looks good. Then I picked it up yesterday evening and stayed up until nearly Midnight reading much for a week at a time!

I loved this book! Lynn makes me feel like I've known her all my life and I have a friend who is dishing out bits and pieces from the books she has been reading. If you click on the title above, it will take you to further info about the book and I'll share the remainder of my thoughts in May. However, I liked this so much that I wanted to share it with my fellow book lovers today. It's light reading about homemaking, parenting, the Christian walk, etc. will bring you Truth as well as knowledge.

Don't let the "light" full you, though. There is excellent information here. It would make a wonderful wedding shower gift for the new bride but this wife of thirty-two years learned a lot. It would also be a good book to take on vacation with you this Summer. This is definitely a four teacups out of four book and I'd even pay full price. (Hey, it isn't all that expensive, after all!)


smilnsigh said...

Question... Is the woman pictured on the 'Mary Jane' books, really Mary Jane?

Yes, I know. Silly question. -giggles- But I've wondered this.

Tomorrow is April. How goes the 'baby countdown'? :-))))


Brenda@CoffeeTeaBooks said...

Hi, MN!

I had to check for certain but it is a picture of her. She's one beautiful farmer.


Brenda@CoffeeTeaBooks said...

Oh...I forgot...

Bags are packed, ready for the hospital. Baby due any time now.

Wouldn't be surprised to get a call soon.

lady laura said...

smilnsigh--I think it is. There are other photos of her throughout the book. In fact, I think all the photography is original.

Brenda--we read so many of the same books, it just tickles me!

Anonymous said...

Wow, I could have used this book when I was newly married. But alas, I've learned quite a bit since. Of course there is always room for improvement and wisdom. This book sounds like a keeper.