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Mitten Strings for God: Reflections for Mothers in a Hurry

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4.20  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,162 Ratings  ·  272 Reviews
As mothers today we are faced with a daunting list of responsibilities. How easy it is to simply rush headlong through our lives, slaves to our daily obligations, and in the process race our children through their childhood. But there is a better way... In Mitten Strings for God, Katrina Kenison shares her own search for a more satisfying balance in her life. The result is ...more
Paperback, 240 pages
Published April 1st 2002 by Grand Central Publishing (first published 2000)
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Melanie
Sep 24, 2009 Melanie rated it liked it
Recommends it for: moms
Recommended to Melanie by: Karen Barnes
This was a quick read for moms. (Don't let the title deter you - what the crap? Who names a book using the words "mitten strings???") My aunt recommended it when she saw I had read "I Am a Mother." This one was more of a reprimand to moms who don't spend enough time and energy being moms. But in a good way. It just makes you realize how much value there is in just being present in your kids' lives. This book was a little more of a how-to book than "I Am a Mother" was. Parts of it were a little w ...more
Mandy
Aug 12, 2011 Mandy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
When I first heard of Katrina Kenison's book, Mitten Strings for God: Reflections for Mothers in a Hurry, I mentally brushed it off. With such a title, I expected the book to proselytize religious beliefs. When the book showed up in my mailbox from the publisher, I picked it up with apprehension, and found I was pleasantly surpirsed.

There are a handful of religious references in the book, but Kenison mentions them only in context to her life and never comes out and says anything definitive about
...more
Megan
Oct 14, 2009 Megan rated it did not like it
I must say that I really didn't like this book. I felt it was VERY self righteous and incredibley unrealistic. She acts like she prances after her children, playing a flute and showering them with flowers. She never mentions the fact that she works so they are likely in daycare, never mentions the laundry or the million other things to get done. She talks about all their activities and then says you shouldn't have them in too many activities. I felt it was hypocritical by omission. In our family ...more
Emily (emjoy20)
Jun 15, 2011 Emily (emjoy20) rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book was a relaxing, peaceful read. Excellent example to work constantly to prioritize and have our lives reflect what we want and believe in. I've heard some that thought that this book was too "idealistic" and I see what they mean. The author paints a very rosy picture of family life. But I loved that it gave a glimpse of how important the choices we make as mothers are for our kids and homes. Great mothering pick-me-up.
Alicia
Jan 10, 2011 Alicia rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
As a mother of children the same age as Ms. Kenison's I was interested to see what she had to say. I was captivated. Ms. Kenison said so much that resonated with me concerning raising your children. Don't get me wrong this is not a parenting book so much as a gentle suggestion book. This is a bit like a gentle conversation filled with musings from a good friend over coffee. I highly reccommend this book to any parent witha spiritual bent.
Becky
May 28, 2013 Becky rated it it was amazing
A dear, dear friend sent me a copy of this and I loved every beautifully written chapter. Such great reminders to slow down and enjoy every last minute with my kids while they are young. It also stresses how much my own attitude permeates the attitudes of those around me - if I am at peace, the house will be more peaceful. I'd recommend this to any busy mom out there. Five stars!
Sanz
Apr 23, 2014 Sanz rated it it was amazing
This book is outstanding. I read it in two nights and an early morning. I dog-eared so many pages and marked so many passages. It is easily my favorite parenting book. (Simplicity Parenting is now my second favorite.)

"Sometimes, it seems, there are discernible changes overnight. The boy who meets my gaze at the breakfast table is not the same one whose cheek I kissed the night before. And even as I marvel at the latest incarnation, I grieve for yesterday's child, already a memory. To love them
...more
Emily
Jun 09, 2011 Emily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I read this and Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother at the same time and it was such a stark contrast! I read Tiger Mother in about 24 hours and this one took me a few weeks, which is appropriate because Mitten Strings is about taking time to enjoy the day, noticing the little things, appreciating the quiet, being still, meditating and appreciating. Tiger Mother is Go! Go! Go!
If you like Anne Morrow Lindbergh, or feel overscheduled, or could just use a reminder of the beauties of motherhood, I reco
...more
Linda Francis
Oct 25, 2014 Linda Francis rated it liked it
I liked this book fine, and there were many things that I agreed with. I struggle in general to like parenting books because I believe so much of parenting is individual and Divine. It was not a book I could totally relate to as she was admonishing me with the experiences she learned parenting little ones, while I might be seeking the counsel of those who have successfully seen their children through many stages of development. I really enjoyed her thoughts on how children need to learn the plea ...more
Sarah
Jan 24, 2015 Sarah rated it really liked it
This is a warm, homey-feeling book that has a lot of gold nuggets of parenting/self-help wisdom to extract. The author obviously devoted herself to the duties of motherhood 100%, which is encouraging to me, as I want to do the same. As a Christian, only *some* of her principles and ethics resonate with me, because overall, the book had a new-agey tone which left me with an uneasy feeling at times.

She speaks of her children being "divine beings", which leaves a big question mark in my head as to
...more
Wendy
May 26, 2011 Wendy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a book that I started reading as we were trying to choose our church Mom's group book for a book discussion (I am co-leader). While we didn't choose this one, I still wanted to finish reading it. This is a book about embracing our children while they are young because they grow up so fast. I enjoyed all of the topics author Katrina Kenison touched on and many points she made were points I can truly identify with.
Jen
Dec 31, 2008 Jen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: parenting
I am going to return this to the library and pick up a copy for myself. Just after reading the first few chapters, I knew it was a book I would want to come back to. It is one of those books to read every few months just to slow down your mind, bring your focus back to what is important and really get some warm-and-fuzzies about being a mommy and the blessings of having a family.
Diane
Apr 27, 2011 Diane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Loved this book. Although I'm not in 100% agreement with her logic w/no tv, we have scaled back dramatically and it has made a huge difference in the quality of our lives since computers, ipods, television in general tends to take over our lives. Highly recommend it, especially to busy, working mothers who want a reminder to slow down and cherish every moment.
Juli
Dec 19, 2009 Juli rated it it was amazing
I learned to slow down and not try to do everything that we can possibly do for our children. They do not need to be in every imaginable activity to have a good childhood. They also need time to slow down and take in the marvelous world around them. It's nice for them to have time to make their own discoveries instead of having everything fed to them.
Holly
Nov 08, 2014 Holly rated it really liked it
Four stars because I really appreciate ether ideas she presented and the values she embraces. The chapters are short so it is indeed a book that a busy mom can nibble at over time. I did find it redundant and unrealistic at times - and even a bit outdated at moments. But overall a great read - lots of good reminders.
Cheryl
Feb 19, 2013 Cheryl rated it it was amazing
A lovely gem of a book. So much wisdom about choosing our priorities as a Mother. I learned so much, it spoke to my soul an answered actual prayers. It is about being an intentional parent an slowing down in this crazy life. Probably my favorite parenting book I've ever read
Jenn
Mar 08, 2008 Jenn rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This book has the lamest title in the history of books, but I really enjoyed her thoughts on motherhood and slowing down so you can authentically enjoy it. She reminds you to find joy in the simple and mundane tasks that are a necessary part of motherhood.
Brynn
Jul 21, 2011 Brynn rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book really made me reevaluate my life and what is important each day. It helped me to take a step back and contemplate what is really important in the day-to-day for my children. It was excellent--I highly recommend it.
Rose
Oct 13, 2011 Rose rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It's amazing how much I relate to this book. In this day and age I have taught my children to live simply and to entertain themselves with the arts. We really don't watch a lot of TV...we probably could live without it!
Kristen
Nov 15, 2010 Kristen rated it really liked it
Shelves: memoir, parenting
I read this book, then reread it, then reread it. Katrina is a beautiful writer and much of her subject matter here resonated with me as the mother of two young children.
Gaynell
Oct 09, 2013 Gaynell rated it it was amazing
Love! Katrina Kenison understands the moments in mothering that matter. The moments in mothering that are pearls which we string on a string and store in our hearts.
Sarah Evans
Jun 15, 2011 Sarah Evans rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Great for any mother to glean great things to apply in ones life as a mother. Loved it!
Michelle
Dec 18, 2011 Michelle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Beautiful book, I reference it a lot. Especially the pretzel recipe....
Michelle
May 10, 2014 Michelle rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
I thought this was going to be corny, but it is very well-written and thought-provoking. Ideally I would have read it when my children were younger (preschool - early elementary), but it still gave me some great perspective. What do I want our family culture to be? How do I want my children to remember their childhood? How exactly does one go about creating peace and space when our culture is to fill every spare moment with activities? Anyway, I do recommend it especially for young mothers who c ...more
Rebecca
Nov 26, 2014 Rebecca rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2014-read
I adore this book, this is maybe the third time I've read it - and won't be the last. The title is completely ridiculous and would no doubt put people off reading it perhaps. (There are no religious tones to it at all - the title reference is about her son making a particularly long thread of finger-knitting!) I know when I first read it I identified so strongly with its' themes, and 4 years later, I still do. It is a book about mothering and simplicity and choices and families, and how we spend ...more
Ashley
Jun 04, 2012 Ashley rated it it was amazing
Memoir? Check.
Musings on motherhood? Check.
Final chapter that made me cry? Check.

My oldest is closing in on 4 years old, and I already feel like he's too grown up! I found this book at the right time - the last week or so, my 3-year-old and I have spent several afternoons laying on the hammock, sometimes reading and sometimes just listening. That hour of time with his mommy makes him happier than any new toy, TV show, or sports lesson ever could. This book assures mothers of what we already know
...more
Kerstin Olcott
Jan 05, 2011 Kerstin Olcott rated it it was amazing
Shelves: parenting, reviewed
This book is another book club book. It's completely perfect for where I am in my life right now. Kenison is a working Mom, raised during the feminist movement, who has chosen to slow her life down and really be mindful of the fleeting time she has with two sweet little spirits. Kenison has re-prioritized her life around finding joy, simplicity, and peace while nurturing her children and her own inner spirit. The book reminds me a bit of The Creative Family although it is focused more on finding ...more
Patriciahoperose
Jul 27, 2012 Patriciahoperose rated it really liked it
"I've learned that even a small shift in my own thinking usually has a more powerful effect on my day-to-day life than any full-scale attempt at self-improvement.

"This is one thing motherhood has taught me: Living according to my values does not necessarily mean being rigid in my convictions about what's 'right.' Sometimes our children's needs do not coincide neatly with our own beliefs. And therein lies a challenge. Do I try to control every aspect of our family environments, or do I allow oth
...more
Emilie
Apr 20, 2011 Emilie rated it it was amazing
Wow! This book was recommended by a friend and it will now be my new highly recommended read for all Moms. This book is beautifully written, with rich, colorful words and visions into the life of the writer that make you yearn to slow your pace, as she has. Despite the many gorgeously written paragraphs of scenes her family has experienced since simplifying her life, she never once comes of as preachy or unattainable. In fact, the many far-from-perfect experiences she shares fro her own mistake ...more
Sarah
May 07, 2011 Sarah rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: self-help, book-club
I loved this book! She painted a beautiful picture of what a home/family can be. I was tempted to knock the rating down. At times I felt some animosity towards the author and her seemingly "perfect" family, ideas, and ability to put it all into action,etc. I fully realize that this was due to jealousy on my part because her pretty little picture doesn't seem possible at this point in my life. I have to take into account the atmosphere that my brother is trying to provide for his children and the ...more
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"I write to remind myself of how I want to live and who I want to be," says KATRINA KENISON, author of three beloved memoirs that, together, chart the seasons of a woman's life.
Her first book, MITTEN STRINGS FOR GOD: REFLECTIONS FOR MOTHERS IN A HURRY, now a classic for parents of young children, is a compelling invitation to do less and enjoy life more -- in a culture that urges "bigger, better
...more
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“we can learn to trust our maternal selves and to have faith in the innate goodness and purity of our children - even when we feel overwhelmed and the kids are pushing all our buttons. we can support one another....we can be understanding of each other and easier on ourselves.” 11 likes
“We are the windows through which our children first see the world. Let us be conscious of the view.” 10 likes
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