The First Try-It-With-Me-Tuesday Book Club

Try-It With-Me Tuesday, an interactive weekly time and place to foster connections that challenge and encourage the process to become a well-rounded person.

“Mom, do you know why Sam in My Side of the Mountain might be like Thoreau?” My fourth-grader questioned me. “If I find out, I can get extra credit.”

“You just learned about Thoreau,” I said. “Remember that talk we heard about Walden Pond? That was about Thoreau.”

She was skeptical. “I don’t think it was the same Thoreau.”

I assured her it was and that we even had his book, Walden, on our bookshelf. “Go get it and get your book, too, so I can see the reference.”

Not many fourth graders would understand that allusion without an explanation, but she got a jump start this week when we heard a leader in our church speak about Thoreau’s experience to separate himself for two years to live a simple life. When she came back, I quizzed her on the four things that he discovered he needed—food, clothing, shelter and fuel. By thinking about those answers, she could see the comparison between Sam and Thoreau.

Since this seems an appropriate time in our society and in my life to consider how Thoreau’s experiences might apply, I’m introducing Walden by Henry David Thoreau as my first selection for the Try-It-With-Me-Tuesday Book Club. By the way, thanks to Holly at Marathon Bird for starting me with Bodacious Bloggity Book Club.

Want to Try It With Me?

First – Find a copy of the book. Thanks to Rachel, who suggested Project Gutenberg would be a great source for books. You can download Walden for free from Project Gutenberg. Or download and listen to the audio book version. Your public library, a friend’s bookshelf or retailers are also a good source if you like to have the book in hand. But hurry . . .

Second – Read it in the next three short weeks, before Tuesday, October 28. Jot down your thoughts and impressions in a journal or on sticky notes on the pages to mark your insights.

Third – Share your impressions in an online discussion here on Tuesday, October, 28. Write a post on your website if you have one. Or just come back and share your thoughts in the comments.

If you do write a post, I want to publish your link so we can visit your website and see what you have to say. Please email your  permalink to tj (at) tjhirst (dot) com no later than Monday, October 27 at 12 a.m. (Central Time). If you don’t make that deadline, just leave the link in your comments on the Tuesday post.

I’m inviting anyone to participate for what I hope will be far from a stuffy discussion to discover what simplicity meant to Thoreau and what it means to us today.

Join in by trying the challenges with me, commenting, linking, or suggesting a challenge. If you want to write a post on your blog about what happened when you took the challenge, I will publish your link. Just link to my website in your post and send me your link. Feel free to use the TIWMT image in your post.


  1. Rebecca
    Oct 7, 2008

    Oh I’m excited! I’ve never read this and hearing that talk made me want to run out and grab a copy!

  2. Rachel
    Oct 7, 2008

    Sounds awesome! I’ve never read Walden. It’s a great time of year to read it!

  3. Rachel
    Oct 7, 2008

    Oh, and thanks for the shout out!

  4. Camille
    Oct 8, 2008

    Count me in too. I’m a great fan of a simple life and am excited to read Thoreau’s thought’s and to go back and listen to Elder Perry’s talk.

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