1980s

Let’s Read Three: Vintage Valentine’s Day Books!

Happy Valentine’s Day! It’s been a long quiet stretch here since Christmas Day. While I’m not one to collect many Valentine’s themed books, I couldn’t help but grab a few pictures of three of my favorite vintage Valentine books. These books are harder to find but you know I love a good trio, and these three are all quite different in their approach to this holiday. (I’ve been pondering a different format for posts on occasion, so bear with my as I try this square, quicker format today.) Let’s read three (vintage) books about Valentine’s Day! Read the full post…

25 Days – Book 23: Angelina’s Christmas

Day 23 is here and in all the hustle and bustle of finishing out the season, it is a good time to stop and think about those who have no one to share the holiday with. For this there is a book like Angelina’s Christmas by Katharine Holabird, illustrations by Helen Craig, 1985.

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25 Days – Book 22: The Story of Holly & Ivy (Cooney)

Day 22 has arrived and with it a long, lovely picture book. There have been many illustrated versions of this picture book. I have two of them: one illustrated by one of my favorites, Adrienne Adams, and this one. This is the one that I have very specific memories of from childhood. I don’t remember owning this book. It must have been a favorite from the library. But I remember the pictures like I made them myself. They bring a flood of memories. And someone must have read me the story, or perhaps I could read for myself at the time; but this one leaves an impression on your heart. Come enjoy a story about wishing. This is The Story of Holly & Ivy by Rumer Godden, pictures by Barbara Cooney, 1957/1985.

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25 Days – Book 19: Barney Wigglesworth And The Smallest Christmas Pageant

Day 19 of our Christmas picture book countdown. We are so close to Christmas! Today I bring a book from the 80s, but it is new to me. I wanted this book so badly as a kid, but never got it. I don’t know if there were any other Barney Wigglesworth fans out there. That series is still one of my favorites from my childhood. We had mostly Christian themed books in our home and, as I’ve bemoaned before, they don’t tend to be very good quality. Barney Wigglesworth is one of the series that breaks that stereotype. There are four total in the series. I had three growing up and my children adore them now. This Christmas I determined to see if I could find an inexpensive copy of that elusive fourth which just so happens to be the Christmas one. So here it is! Barney Wigglesworth and the Smallest Christmas Pageant by Elspeth Campbell Murphy, illustrated by Yakovetic, 1988.

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25 Days – Book 12: The Berenstain Bears’ Christmas Tree

Day 12 brings a lovely tale of a Christmas tree for a family of beloved bears. I don’t know about your families, but around here there is a lot of love for the (vintage) Berenstain Bears. Most of our books are from the 70s and 80s and were my husbands. Our girls have taken a strong liking to them all on their own. I’m not sure if it is the size of the books, the familiarity of the characters, or the simplicity of the stories that has them so captivated. I was excited to track down this book last Christmas. It is a special holiday book based on the NBC-TV Christmas show (which we actually haven’t seen). Warm your heart and your spirit this season with The Berenstain Bears’ Christmas Tree by Stan and Jan Berenstain, 1980.

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25 Days – Book 10: A Child’s Christmas in Wales (Ill. Schart Hyman)

Day 10 of our Christmas countdown is ending after a long Sunday. The Christmas preparation is starting to wear on me a bit and I’m taking a deep breath, hoping to make it through this coming last week of school before the holiday break. Somehow, this book always seems to find me when I’m too tired for the holiday. I wrote a long post about this story last year with illustrations by Chris Raschka. I just reread my post and have considered simply reposting it here as appropriate. Ha! I think I did an excellent job discussing the story in that post, so here I will talk about this version’s illustrations. It is my new favorite version of this book due completely to the illustrations. So come get lost in the art of A Child’s Christmas in Wales by Dylan Thomas (1954) , illustrated by Trina Schart Hyman, 1985.

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25 Days – Book 5: Presents Through the Window

Day 5 of our Christmas countdown is a surprise appearance from Santa in a helicopter. Originally published in Japan in 1983, this book was joyfully translated last year. It’s a hilarious story about Santa, windows, animals, and mixed-up gifts. Check out Presents Through the Window by Taro Gomi, 2016.

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25 Days – Book 4: I Can’t Wait Until Christmas

Day 4 brings a very real sentiment for the littles in our home. Once Thanksgiving is over and December begins, the wait for Christmas can be immensely hard to bear! Join Big Bird in this Sesame Street Little Golden Book, I Can’t Wait Until Christmas by Linda Lee Maifair, illustrated by Joe Ewers, 1989.

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