July 2023 Monthly Newsletter

July 3, 2023

The following post will be a blog archive copy of Build Your Library’s July 2023 Monthly Newsletter. If you missed the email, you can subscribe to our mailing list here. [Scheduled to be sent by 7/3/23 8:30 AM EST]

[July 1, 2023 ] – Welcome to our July Video Newsletter!

You should have gotten our regular monthly e-mail newsletter in your inbox if you subscribed. But you can now watch the video highlights and read the full details below or watch the BYL July 2023 Video Newsletter on Facebook.

Hey everybody, it’s Emily from Build Your Library! If you are just going to skim the beginning, here are the main topics in this month’s newsletter:

Now that I have your attention, here are the details on those items and more.

Monthly Newsletter

“And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.”

—F. Scott Fitzgerald, The Great Gatsby


Welcome July! Once more, a month has just flown by, but it’s fine because it’s really and truly Summer! It’s a season of slowness, cold drinks in the sunshine, picnics and cookouts, and long days spent outside (or if I’m being honest, inside) reading stacks of books. But it’s also a season of planning and getting everything in order for the upcoming school year!

As far as the newsletter goes, we have some new information to share, as well as some reoccurring monthly reminders!

Early Bird Summer Sale!

I hope that you are all having a wonderful and relaxing summer! I know it seems like you just finished, but the new homeschooling year is just around the corner.

But now, it’s time for our Early Bird Summer SALE! We kicked off the savings just in time to get ready for the next school year!

summer sale

Take 20% off  your entire purchase using the code EARLYBIRD23 at checkout until July 9! This code is only good for all secular. literature-based products listed on our BuildYourLibrary.com website, as well as used books in our BYL Online Used Book Super Store.

We hope you will try out a program and join the Build Your Library family, – building young minds, one book at a time!

Brand New Lit Bite: The Last Mapmaker!

A brand new Lit Bite just dropped!
The Last Mapmaker by Christina Soontornvat is a high-seas adventure set in a Thai-inspired fantasy world. Sai is a girl who dreams of making a name for herself in the world. Filled with intrigue, mystery, and adventure, this book is a thrilling and moving story about found family, ambition, and colonialism.
This Lit Bite will take 4 weeks to complete, and I recommend it for ages 10 and up.
Lit Bites are small literature unit studies based on just one book. These bites contain everything you need to study a piece of literature with your child. They include vocabulary, discussion questions, and activities based on the story.
These short units are perfect when you just want to study one specific title or when you need to swap a book out of a level. Now, you will have a ready-made literature unit to use rather than having to come up with something on your own!
Each Lit Bite is just $5.95. We have a variety of literature for all age levels to choose from!

Build Your Library Updates

In an attempt to answer when the next level update will be ready, we have compiled our projected schedule into a post for easy reference. We will periodically update the chart when we make progress or have any changes to our tentative schedule.

Last month, I completed a small update for Level 0 – I replaced the atlas with the DK Smithsonian Children’s Illustrated Atlas, and the sticker book with the Gold Star World Atlas for Kids: Fact and Activity Book. It was a relatively minor update, but it will hopefully work much better for everyone now! 

The Level 10 update is well underway now and I’m so excited to see how it all turns out. I am updating the science, of course, but I am also changing up the World Religions and Mythology course and freshening up the literature and history…I can’t wait to share more soon!

I am always brainstorming and collecting books for various unit studies too. I have lots of exciting new things in the works! Hopefully, I will be able to share more about those projects soon!

PayPal Issue – Stripe to the Rescue

We had an issue this past month with our shopping cart when Paypal started to flake out on us. For several days, Paypal was failing to resolve our transactions with some sort of issue on their end. After incident tickets with our shopping cart provider, and tickets with Paypal, they eventually figured out their bug after well over a week. While we were offline with PayPal, we switched over payment processing of credit cards to Stripe after a few days to keep our business rolling.

We apologize for any purchasing issue you may have had, but we should be all set now. Currently we have both options available at checkout, regular Paypal and credit cards still through Stripe. At some point we may swap all the way back to Paypal for both, but we now have options to get us through. Thanks so much for your patience.

Build Your Library Reviews and Testimonials

We have never been good at keeping up with trying to compile reviews and testimonials. Over the past 10-plus years, we have gotten a few here and there but we really should get on top of them. We would love to hear about your experience with Build Your Library! Your review could be as short as a few sentences, or as long as you’d like.

Google reviews make up a large component of the SEO algorithms. We are told it is as significant as ~1/3 of the equation. With that said… We would really appreciate it if you clicked the link below, and showed your support by leaving us a Google review, Facebook Review or testimonial for our website. Our growth has been focused around customer interactions and building long-standing relationships. Thank you all for everything, and for making it so easy to love what we do.google review

July Giveaway

Congratulations to our winner of last month’s Giveaway!


This month we will be giving away a free Lit Bite of your choice! 

Each action gives you entries into this month’s drawing, with some allowing for daily clicks. Odds of winning depend on the number of entries received.

Check out the contest page for more details, and come back each month for new opportunities!


Collab with Soul Sparklettes Glitterbombers!

I’m excited to announce that we are collaborating with Soul Sparklettes Art!  They have so many amazing art projects that blend well with Build Your Library. You can sign up for Glitterbombers membership through our affiliate link. Check the downloads on the Purchase Pages for Levels 0 – 5 to see what projects align!

Sign Up for Glitterbombers Here!

July Bookish Holidays

July is designated Read an Almanac Month, and July 30th is Paperback Book Day!

As far as birthdays go, Dean Koontz (July 9, 1945), E. B. White (July 11, 1899), Ernest Hemingway (July 21, 1899), and Helen Beatrix Potter (July 28, 1866) all celebrate this month.

While most of you do not need any extra encouragement to pick up some additional reading material – we have plenty of excuses for you here! Or an excuse for cake.

BYL Online Used Book Super Store

I have wanted to open an independent bookstore my whole life. A cute, cozy Hobbit hole of a bookstore with new books, used books, maybe tea… After many delays and setbacks, a brick-and-mortar store isn’t currently in the cards.

However, since I have a storage unit (and house) full of books I’ve been collecting for a store, we have decided to try to set up the BYL Online Used Book Super Store! We are so excited to announce that we are open for business! We don’t have a ton of books listed yet, but we will be adding in inventory throughout this month. So yay! Happy book shopping!

We are adding new books almost daily, so keep checking back. We have something for every reader!

2023 Build Your Library Reading Challenge Check In

We are over half-way through our reading challenge this year. How are your reading challenge checklists looking so far this year? For 2023, we created a new list of 40 reading prompts to help you and your children stretch your reading muscles. This year’s theme is Adventures in Science and Nature! It’s going to be an amazing reading year filled with fun challenges and lots of science and nature-themed reading! Head over to our blog and download your checklist today!

I’ve already checked off  30 out of the 40 prompts, I am SO gonna finish this year’s whole challenge!

I just filmed my Mid-Year Book Freakout Tag if you want to see how my reading year has been going!

History Book by Book (HBBB)!

History Book By Book is our database collection of engaging, entertaining, and educational books about various historical topics. Whenever possible, we have cross-referenced topics, internally linked additional suggestions based on like subjects, and created useful categorized lists for you to search and browse. Hopefully, you will be able to glean a vast amount of information and find as many history-related books as you would ever want to find. We discussed it in depth during a recent Tea With Emily Livestream on Facebook, you can view the recording here.

As a long time homeschooling parent, and the author of literature-based homeschool curriculum, we designed HBBB to help:

(1) homeschooling parents looking for additional resources to read to their children,
(2) homeschooling parents looking for more historical based books to give their children to read themselves,
(3) any teen or adult looking for categorized historical reading material for their own enjoyment and knowledge.

Reading your way through history… one book at a time.

History Book By Book Main page

We have recently started to create some blog post articles on HBBB! You can check out our first couple on our HBBB Blog.

Homeschool Tidbits Blog and Video Series

We have an ongoing series on both our blog and YouTube channel called Homeschool Tidbits!

In this weekly video series, I will briefly discuss a homeschooling-related topic and will share some of my knowledge and expertise as a long-time homeschooling mother of 4 children, Three of whom have graduated high school, and one is also a brand-new college graduate!

This series will consist of an approximately 10-minute “quick-bit” YouTube video and a corresponding blog post article.

I took most of June off from filming Tidbits, but I’m planning on filming some more in July, so stay tuned, hopefully on the 7th… 14th at the latest! 🙂

Most Recent Episodes:

“Tea with Emily” Instagram Live Stream

We hope you all enjoyed our last “Tea with Emily” Instagram Live Stream. If you missed our “Bringing Learning into the Slower Summer Months” last month in June, you can find a recording by scrolling our Facebook, Instagram or direct links on our past events page.

Our next Instagram Livestream will be in August.

Every other month, I host a 30-60 minute Build Your Library homeschooling chat. You can ask questions about homeschooling, using Build Your Library curriculum, book recommendations, etc. We will announce the date ahead of time, and you will be able to submit questions you would like to cover. Additionally, you can also ask questions during the interactive live stream. Grab a mug of tea (or coffee) and cozy up with our virtual hangout!

Build Your Library Support

Are you looking for help or advice on your homeschooling journey? We have compiled all of our helpful resources into one blog post for you. From the many BYL-related Facebook groups to my book A Literary Education, there is a treasure trove of information and helpful parents out there to help guide you along your homeschooling adventure. If you have any questions, just ask!

For a comprehensive, everything you ever wanted to know about homeschooling with Build Your Library, check out our “Build Your Library University (for Parents).” We have collected the definitive list of articles, videos, and books about Build Your Library, Charlotte Mason, and general homeschooling, all categorized in a logical order for you to peruse.

BYL Social Media Shout Out

We always have our Social Media “chicklets” at the bottom of our newsletters and web page, but we wanted to ensure you follow us on our other platforms. The Build Your Library Facebook is our go-to social media site, and we post there frequently with cool Amazon products and book recommendations we think you would like, as well as all of our Read Aloud Book Club announcements, blog posts, full-year and unit study product releases and updates, and more.

Our Build Your Library Instagram page regularly posts pictures and insider info about projects I’m currently working on or what I’m doing with my kids.

Although not 100% exclusively Build Your Library related, our Arrrgh Schooling YouTube channel has videos about books and homeschooling, but let’s be honest, it’s mostly books. If you want to see what I’m reading, join my Arrrgh Booked Book Club. This month we’re reading Weyward by Emilia Hart! Or if just want ideas for books to read (either for you or your children) you are sure to find something useful!

We also have a BYL Twitter feed where I share links and information about BYL and homeschooling. Or you can stay subscribed to our email list and browse our monthly newsletters.

Wrap Up

I hope you have a wonderful July! I can’t wait to see what this new month brings!

“Everything good, everything magical happens between the months of June and August.”

—Jenny Han, The Summer I Turned Pretty

If you are looking for some more inspiration, here are some articles you might find helpful:

We have well over 100 blog posts on various homeschooling and book-related topics if you want to browse for more.

I think that is about all for this month. Again, please follow us on whatever social media you frequent, there will be periodic updates posted there as well, but we will try to keep everyone in the know wherever you are surfing!

Thanks and Happy Reading! Emily

See Also:

June 2023 Monthly Newsletter

Browse the course work
people are raving about


About Build Your Library

Have you been looking for a literature based homeschool curriculum that is secular? How about a way to incorporate narration, copywork, dictation and memory work into your child’s education? Or art study that ties into history?

Read more