Every year I bring up our Christmas books and magazines, tuck them into a basket, and put them somewhere to catch our eyes. Our daily ‘breakfast and storytime’ becomes ‘breakfast and holiday magic’ time. The kids are either laughing or I’m crying, depending on the tale.
Here are a few that we all enjoy:
- The Christmas Ship by Morrisey – inspiring, true to the spirit of the season, paintings of incredible colours and light
- Great Joy by Dicamillo – makes me cry every time, but so simple and so powerful
- The Christmas Orange by Gilmor – what’s not to like about this one? An orange, perfect and mysterious, as an anecdote to greed
- How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss – great rhythm, great message, a lot of fun to read aloud, Sandra memorized it last year
- The Night Before Christmas illustrated by Jan Brett – the illustrations are like the season – full of many boxes with treasures to be discovered.
- The Baker’s Dozen: A St. Nicholas Tale by Shepard – great visual style, a wonderful message about the difference between honesty and generosity
- The Christmas Kitten by Heriot
- Poetry for Holidays edited by Larrick
Two the kids like better than I do:
- Snowmen at Christmas by Buehner – the rhythm is erratic in this rhyming and playful tale. Tias still likes to find the hidden cats, Santas, dinosaur
- Bear Stays Up at Christmas by Wilson – it was charming when they were younger, but now I find it too simplistic
If you can find it:
- Medieval Holidays and Festivals: A Calendar of Celebrations by Madeleine Pelner Cosman – wonderful resource for learning how the Christmas traditions of that period were so different from our own and yet form the root of them. 12 times 12…
I’m pretty excited about the books I discovered for the kids at a second-hand ship this year. Among them is A Newberry Christmas. I’m so excited to put together a reading treasure hunt for them to follow, with this and some hot chocolate mix and cookies at its end.
What stories are part of your family’s season? Christmas, soltice, wintertime… I’m always looking for wonderful stories, especially since part of our early December traditions include a new book for each child.