"Pocketful of Pinecones" Book Review

Jenny/ May 4, 2019/ Homeschool Reviews


I have to be perfectly honest, Karen Andreola is my new favorite author for non-fiction and then she had to go and do this: write an awesome fiction book that is super helpful also! Its called “Pocketful of Pinecones” and is the story of a mother in the 1930’s who is home educating her two children. Let’s just say, I had serious issues putting this book down!


The book itself is gorgeous and illustrated throughout with black and white drawings. (I love that!) Each chapter is short enough that a busy mom can snatch a few minutes to read and refresh herself throughout the day. I used it as my nursing book. As often as I could I read it while feeding my 3 month old baby.


It tells a beautiful story of Carol who is going to be homeschooling her children for the first time through the influence and advice of the writings of Charlotte Mason. This book focuses mainly on Nature Study, but somehow weaves the story of Carol’s life into the pages. I was hooked instantly.



Not only do I love this time period (the Depression) but I also love the sense of community you gain from the book. This tells of a time when communities where still tightly knit and time moved at a slower pace, without television, social media and cell phones. And while I appreciate many of the things we have access to now (for example, I was able to download for free many of the older books she recommended) I still highly appreciate the simpler time and would really love to experience that. This book helps do that for me!


But this book is not simply fiction and a good read, its also a highly practical guide for how to do nature study with your children. I gained so many good ideas from this and have already been putting them into practice. One thing we are doing is drawing plants, animals and insects we see. Though my kids are young right now, I hope to teach them to make a nature journal that they can treasure in years to come.



“Pocketful of Pinecones” is also full of spiritual refreshment and one idea she had I really liked was to look for hymns that sing of God’s creation and write some of them in your nature journal. It has several poems that spoke to me also and encouraged me to delve more deeply into poetry with the kids. In the back Karen gives the details of the resources she mentions in the book so you can get them for yourself if you so choose. I’ve already made a book order with many of her recommendations!


I cannot recommend this author and this book too highly! I am so thankful that I found her 🙂


Psst…stay tuned for the sequel “Lessons at Blackberrry Inn”.  Its my mother’s day present!!

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About Jenny

Jenny is a homeschooling mom of 4 and wife to a wonderful husband. She enjoys reading, a good cup of coffee, and spending time outdoors with her family. You can find her writing about Jesus, homeschooling, and life on her blog Our Inconvenient Family, and contributing regularly at Lifeschooling Conference.

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