Guest Post: Jennifer of Luster

by Ashley on August 24, 2011

I’ve asked a few friends and fellow-bloggers to guest post while I am getting acquainted with Hudson–though I know I’ll enjoy sharing updates and photos from time to time. Jenn is a Brooklyn-based designer who writes a beautiful site, Luster. We got to know each other (online) over shared travel interests. And I just learned that both of our mothers were elementary school ESL teachers! Here are Jenn’s bookshelf recommendations…

{My brother and I on the den sofa where I am begging him to read me a story. I think it was the only way I could distract him from teasing me. I am wearing my favorite cozy sweater that had applique ballet slippers, probably drinking an apple juice, and rocking a pair of Dr. Scholl’s sandals with socks.} 

Books were always a big part of my childhood. My mother is an elementary ESL Teacher and always had a well-stocked library at home, and her classroom at school. She read to us almost every night before bedtime and I think that helped progress my reading level because I remember being at Kindergarten and was breezing past “The Bug in a Jug” or whatever the title of that little book is that everyone gets in the beginning of Kindergarten.
My brother and I were not allowed to watch television during the school week, and I distinctly remember summers where my Mom signed us up for the “Summer Book Club” at our local library and we were required to read something like 10 books throughout the course of the summer. We were always frustrated at first that we were forced into educational activity during vacation, but as the weeks went by we always loved going to the Bookmobile a few streets from our house and picking out something new. I loved so many of the books, but the ones that I remember best are the classics like Alexander and Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad DayThe Velveteen RabbitWhere the Wild Things AreGoodnight MoonThe Giving Tree, and The Goat in the Rug.

The Goat in the Rug is not as well-known, but a great story about the Southwest, and a Navajo weaver named Glenmae and her goat Geraldine. Glenmae is about to start weaving a new rug, and that means it’s time to shear wool from Geraldine to use for the rug. I always loved hearing about how Glenmae used plants and herbs to make the dyes that color the wool. It’s a story about friendship and educates you about a traditional Navajo craft. It’s interesting reflecting on it now since I ended up studying textiles & weaving and became a textile designer. Even at that age, it held my interest.
I cannot wait to read to my future children, and I hope to instill the same love of reading and books that my Mom gave to us.

Thanks to Ashley for having me!

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