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Saturday, January 13, 2007

An Antiquer's Daughter

My mother is an avid collector of antiques, of course they have to suit her fancy but she has a few collections. She almost has every piece of the Ballerina Cameo, Green Depression glass. She knows the reproductions from the originals. She also loves lamps, candle holders and matchboxes. My grandmother collects Royal Doulton dolls and teacups with saucers. My mother-in-law collects Gone with the Wind memorabilia and cookbooks.

What do I collect? I tried the Willow Tree Angels, I love them! They are simple, elegant and have a primitive feel to them. However, how many angels does one person need? Also, where in the world do you PUT them? I tried a shelf, my fil bumped the shelf during a visit and the fall (laugh if you want) beheaded 6 of my angels. He offered to replace them but I told him it was okay. I didn't have the heart to say that it really wasn't a loss. My mil and fil had bought a good many of them.

I'd really like to say I collect something, at least to make it easier on those who want to give gifts that will have meaning to me. I was reminded at Christmas just how hard I tend to make gift-giving on others. I don't collect anything. A ha! Yes, I do. I realized this morning that I do collect something and I hold them in very high-esteem. I collect books. I don't just value the modern books, no my real passion is the books of old that are in good condition to be used today. Alas, I'm still difficult. I want certain books, a certain quality to them and I prefer that they don't smell.

I found these at an antique store and I have decided to "collect" them. They are called Junior Deluxe Editions, most were published by Doubleday in the 1950's. The ones I have pictured are in great condition, the pages are crisp and white, they do not smell and the spines are tight. Pictured is: Five Little Peppers, Myths Every Child Should Know, Gulliver's Travels, Bambi, Captain Courageous, Toby Tyler and Black Beauty. Do you know how many of these were published? I don't know either, but it's a lot more.

Here's a look at the inside of Five Little Peppers.

I love the illustrations. I also love that I don't have to worry about content due to modern updating. I can use these as read-alouds now and when my children are old enough, they will be reading them on their own. Another set that is probably even more lovely than these is the Everyman's Library Children's Classics. But I found these first and these are what I'm going to collect. (So, there!)

I know a lot of people don't wish to take the time to go to thrift stores, antique stores and used bookstores in search of great homeschooling books. Or they feel better buying new. All I can say is thank you! Thank you for leaving these treasures for me to find! While you like D'Aulaire, James Baldwin, Kipling, Burgess, and other authors that write "living" books in your shopping cart of the brand new bookstore or online homeschool store- I'm giving these treasures a home. In fact, if you have one or two on your shelf in good condition- email me. I'm interested!

See what an influence my mother is! It's all her fault. That's my story and I'm sticking to it.



ThoughtfulMom said...

I wish I had time for that kind of shopping! I love to find what we need for school at used bookstores. I can purchase locally, plus, they are so very nice!

We have the Black Beauty from that set - but then so do you. Sorry I can't help - I'll keep an eye out, though. I occasionally make it to used dealers.

Anonymous said...

Hi Jessica,
I had that WHOLE set growing up. I went over to my moms and put in dibs! lol My well meaning father ended up taking all the books that she had in boxes and gave them to my uncle who was having a garage sale.:( I was a little upset, to say the least. But I am sure the family that has them are enjoying them.
They are neat books. As I am sure you know. I hope you all enjoy them.
Have a great weekend!
Tina Kay

Anonymous said...

Oh, Jessica I sure wish you lived close by...we could go book hunting together. Then'd be competition then! *grin*

I have many of the Doubleday "Best in Children's Books" collection from the same years. They're collections of stories, I think I have 18 volumes. Now I'll have to start looking for the Jr. Deluxe Editions. No wonder you gave up the Five Little Peppers PB! :)

Anonymous said...

Let me type this before the drool on my keyboard shorts it out. I share your passion. Guess what they opened down the road from em? A Goodwill bookstore! That's right, a Goodwill with nuthin' but books! I bought a really nice poetry anthology from the '40's there when they opened. I have a bunch of old textbooks. We don't really use them, I just have them. Is that wrong? I love them!

Holly said...

HI Jessica,
I too collect those books as well. So far I have two of them. I love the illustrations...that they are so innocent...perfect for children. I usually hit our goodwill/salvation army store once a month to check for books. I am always amazed at the books people just give away! Have a wonderful Lord's day! ~Holly

Anonymous said...

One of my favorite places in our town is our used bookstore. It's this great old place with floor to ceiling shelves so close together you can hardly get around someone else browsing.

Kim W.

Under the Sky said...

These look so neat. I know what you mean about older books with a funny smell. :+) I don't much care for that either!

Your blog is just packed with so much great information! One could stay here indefinitely and not run out of things to read.