All the Places to Love by Patricia MacLachlan PDF Print E-mail
In the Library


all the places to loveAll the Places to Love by Patricia MacLachlan with paintings by Mike Wimmer: I included the painter’s name in the introduction of this book because of his gorgeous pictures. Wow, what a beautiful and endearing book. Who couldn’t love a book that begins with a dedication by the painter to “my grandparents…for their sixty-four years of marriage, which serve as the mortar that binds my family together”? As a matter of fact, the story is about grandparents and the love they have for their daughter and her children. It begins, “On the day I was born my grandmother wrapped me in a blanket made from the wool of her sheep. She held me up in the open window so that what I…saw first were all the places to love: the valley, the river falling down over rocks, the hilltop where the blueberries grew. My grandfather was painting the barn, and when he saw me he cried. He carved my name—Eli—on a rafter beside his name and Grandmother’s name and the names of my papa and mama.”

      Well, besides falling in love with the pictures, I knew from the start of this story that this was a winner. As a matter of fact, I intend to buy this book for Sonia, Jedidiah, and Josiah. The story goes on to tell about his mother who carried him through the meadow; him helping his father plow the fields and how they carried a handful of dirt home in their pockets—not because they were so dirty—but because they loved the earth in the field so much; about his grandmother sailing little bark boats downstream with messages like “I love you, Eli”; about cattails and killdeers, blueberries and the sweet-smelling barn with the endearing thought voiced to his grandson: “Where else can the soft sound of cows chewing make all the difference in the world?” Jon’s and my sentiments exactly! Oh, how we both long for our farm! Maybe, someday, Jon and I will be able to take our grandchildren to our sweet-smelling barn and say, “Where else can the soft sound of cows chewing make all the difference in the world?” Lovely, simply lovely!