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Crafts & Hobbies

These days, the word "hobby" evokes a sense of blase interest. Children have hobbies; bored housewives might have a hobby or two; the rest of us can scarcely be bothered. The original connotation was much different, however—a person's hobby was their avocation, not a primary sense of income, but certainly the focus of passion and interest.

To put it in perspective: Rene Descartes was a mathemetician by trade, but his hobby or avocation was philosophy. Not everyone with a hobby is going to change the course of Western civilization, but the point is that Descartes' hobby wasn't a mere back-drawer doodad he pulled out when he was bored and lonely, it was a motivating force in his life.

We're not suggesting hobbies need to take over your life, like robots in some creepy sci-fi movie. Just the opposite, in fact—hobbies should keep us from surrendering to the doldrums of existence, make us excited, provide an opportunity to exercise our creative talents and explore our interests. They shouldn't be simply a way to pass the time, because that's just another name for boredom.

At the same time, making your hobbies (whether they include cooking, weaving, woodworking, book-binding, or origami) the focus of all your attention is just as harmful. If you find yourself only working to fuel your interests, your hobbies (however harmless they were to begin with) have become your idols and you need to put them aside and learn to prioritize. Still, you need to have interests outside of work, and they need to be cultivated and not just casually dabbled in from time to time.

Why do we take hobbies so seriously? Because what we spend our free time doing reveals a great deal about who we are. If your primary activity when you aren't at work or cleaning the house or whatever is buying clothes, then clothes are what's important to you. The same is true for playing video games, watching reality TV, and bare-knuckle boxing.

It's important to choose hobbies that are constructive. As Christians, we're to do everything to the glory of God, and while some activities done in moderation might be fun, doing them all the time is more a sign of selfish addiction than simple enjoyment. Hobbies should be relaxing, of course, but they should be good for something, and good for other people.

The books you'll find below won't tell you what your hobby should be. They will, however, help you develop the skills related to certain hobbies so you can pursue them to the best of your ability. In a world that excuses lack of excellence and even defends poor quality, we need to work even harder to do our best, whether in our vocations or our avocations.

Review by C. Hollis Crossman
C. Hollis Crossman used to be a child. Now he is a husband and father, teaches adult Sunday school in his Presbyterian congregation, and likes weird stuff. He might be a mythical creature, but he's definitely not a centaur. Read more of his reviews here.

 

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85 Items found Print
American Boy's Handy Book
by Daniel Beard
from Dover Publications
for 4th-9th grade
in Hiking & Outdoor Adventures (Location: CGA-09A)
American Girl's Handy Book
by Lina & Adelia Beard
from David R. Godine
for 4th-9th grade
in Dangerous Books for Kids (Location: CGA-10A)
Animated Origami Faces
by Joel Stern
from Dover Publications
for 4th-8th grade
in Paper Crafts & Origami (Location: CGA-07B)
Backyard Homestead
by Carleen Madigan
from Storey Publishing
for Adult
in Self-Sufficiency (Location: C08-09A)
Baffle Book
by Lassiter Wren
from David R. Godine
for 6th-12th grade
in Brain Teasers & Puzzlers (Location: CGA-07D)
Beginner Book: Warfare by Duct Tape
by Steven Erickson
from Chinquapin Press
for 4th-Adult
in Crafts & Hobbies (Location: CGA-06C)
Bentwood Box
by Nan McNutt
from Sasquatch Books
for 4th-6th grade
in Native Americans (Location: B01-16C)
Best Hikes with Kids: Oregon
by Bonnie Henderson
2nd edition from Mountaineers Books
for 1st-8th grade; adult
in Hiking & Outdoor Adventures (Location: CGA-09A)
Big Book of Geometric Designs and Illusions to Color
by Koichi Sato, Spyros Horemis
illustrated edition from Dover Publications
for 2nd-Adult
in Dover Coloring Books (Location: A01-DOV)
Botanical Gardens - Coloring Book
Dover Coloring Books
by Dot Barlowe
from Dover Publications
for 2nd-6th grade
in Dover Coloring Books (Location: A01-DOV)
Button Blanket
from Sasquatch Books
for 4th-6th grade
in Native Americans (Location: B01-16C)
Carpentry for Children
by Lester Walker
Ninth Printing from Overlook Press
for 4th-8th grade
in Carpentry for Kids (Location: CGA-08A)
Cat's Cradle
from Klutz
for 3rd-6th grade
in Crafts & Hobbies (Location: CGA-06C)
Civil War Paper Soldiers in Full Color
by A. G. Smith
from Dover Publications
for 2nd-5th grade
in Paper Cut-Out Models (Location: CGA-06B)
Common Threads: Global Quilts Coloring Book
by Tess Zimmer
from Mindware
in Miscellaneous Coloring Books (Location: A01-02D)
Common Weeds - Coloring Book
Dover Coloring Books
by Stefen Bernath
from Dover Publications
for 2nd-6th grade
in Dover Coloring Books (Location: A01-DOV)
Complete Wilderness Training Manual
by Hugh McManners
2nd edition from DK Publishing
for 7th-12th grade
in Hiking & Outdoor Adventures (Location: CGA-09A)
Cut & Assemble a Medieval Castle
by A. G. Smith
from Dover Publications
for 4th-7th grade
in Paper Cut-Out Models (Location: CGA-06B)
Cut & Assemble A Southern Plantation
by Edmund V. Gillon, Jr.
from Dover Publications
for 5th-10th grade
in Paper Cut-Out Models (Location: CGA-06B)
Dangerous Book for Boys
by Conn & Hal Iggulden
from William Morrow & Company
for 3rd-Adult
in Dangerous Books for Kids (Location: CGA-10A)
Dazzling Designs - Coloring Book
by Koichi Sato
from Dover Publications
for 2nd-Adult
in Dover Coloring Books (Location: A01-DOV)
Down & Dirty
by Ellen Zachos
1st edition from Storey Publishing
for 7th-Adult
in Gardening for Kids (Location: CPB-06B)
Eleventh Hour
by Graeme Base
1st ed from Harry N. Abrams, Inc.
for 5th-Adult
in Picture Books (Location: CPB-03)
Eleventh Hour
by Graeme Base
from Scholastic Inc.
for 5th-Adult
in Picture Books (Location: CPB-03)
Favorite Roses - Coloring Book
Dover Coloring Books
by Ilil Arbel
from Dover Publications
for 2nd-6th grade
in Dover Coloring Books (Location: A01-DOV)
Favorite Wildflowers - Coloring Book
Dover Coloring Books
by Ilil Arbel
from Dover Publications
for 2nd-6th grade
in Dover Coloring Books (Location: A01-DOV)
Fizz, Bubble & Flash!
by Anita Brandolini
from Williamson Publishing Company
for 3rd-8th grade
in Chemistry (Location: BSR-05C)
Floral Bouquets - Coloring Book
Dover Coloring Books
by Charlene Tarbox
from Dover Publications
for 2nd-6th grade
in Dover Coloring Books (Location: A01-DOV)
Flower Garden - Coloring Book
Dover Coloring Books
by Ruth Soffer
from Dover Publications
for 2nd-6th grade
in Dover Coloring Books (Location: A01-DOV)
Fun with Easy Origami
by Dover
from Dover Publications
for 3rd-6th grade
in Paper Crafts & Origami (Location: CGA-07B)
Garden Flowers - Coloring Book
Dover Coloring Books
by Stefen Bernath
from Dover Publications
for 2nd-6th grade
in Dover Coloring Books (Location: A01-DOV)
Gardener
by Sarah Stewart & David Small
from Sunburst Book
Realistic fiction for Kindergarten-4th grade
1998 Caldecott Honor Book
in Picture Books (Location: CPB-03)
Gardening When It Counts
by Steve Solomon
from New Society
for 9th-Adult
in Gardening (Location: C08-08F)
Geek Dad
by Ken Denmead
from Gotham Books
for Adult
in Dangerous Books for Kids (Location: CGA-10A)
Giant Play and Learn Book
by Pascale Estellon
from Chronicle Books
for Preschool-3rd grade
Gizmos & Gadgets
by Jill Frankel Hauser
from Williamson Publishing Company
for 1st-8th grade
in Science Experiments & Activities (Location: B17-00A)
God's Special Tent
by Jean Stapleton
from Christian Focus Publications
for 3rd-6th grade
in Bible Activities for Kids (Location: CPB-08C)
Great Animal Search
by Caroline Young
from Usborne
for 3rd-7th grade
in Zoology (Location: BSR-09B)
Great World War II Projects You Can Build Yourself
by Sheri Bell-Rehwoldt
from Nomad Press
for 4th-9th grade
in World War II (1939-1945) (Location: B01-24B)
Green Thumbs
by Laurie Carlson
from Chicago Review Press
for Preschool-3rd grade
in Gardening for Kids (Location: CPB-06B)
Grow Your Own Fruits and Vegetables
by Ian Cooke
from Skyhorse Publishing
for Adult
in Gardening (Location: C08-08F)
Handy Dad
by Todd Davis
from Chronicle Books
for Adult
in Dangerous Books for Kids (Location: CGA-10A)
Home Machinist's Handbook
by Doug Briney
1st edition from McGraw-Hill
for 10th-Adult
in Crafts & Hobbies (Location: CGA-06C)
Homemade Uniforms
by Daniel Forster
for 6th-10th grade
in American Civil War (1860-1865) (Location: B01-18A)
Homesteading
by Abigail R. Gehring
2nd edition from Skyhorse Publishing
for 9th-12th grade
in Self-Sufficiency (Location: C08-09A)
Improve Your Survival Skills
by Lucy Smith
from Usborne
for 4th-6th grade
in Hiking & Outdoor Adventures (Location: CGA-09A)
Joy of Signing Puzzle Book 1
from Logion Press
in Sign Language (Location: B14-03C)
Joy of Signing Puzzle Book 2
Reprint from Logion Press
in Sign Language (Location: B14-03C)
Jump Down, Turn Around
by Bob Jones University
from Bob Jones University Press
for 1st-5th grade
in Brain Teasers & Puzzlers (Location: CGA-07D)
Kaleidoscopic Design - Coloring Book
from Dover Publications
in Dover Coloring Books (Location: A01-DOV)
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