Day 9 brings us a book of selected poems. This book is so incredibly lovely, I was quite surprised to realize I haven’t featured it before. It is a book about Christmas Eve. About a moment when, if all creatures were given human thought and speech, they might utter responses to welcome and comfort the baby Jesus in the manger. Allow yourself to wonder with Manger, poems selected by Lee Bennett Hopkins, illustrated by Helen Cann, 2014.
Day 8 is a sweet book adapted from an old English carol. It is a story about the first Christmas as the animals await Mary and Joseph and their newborn baby. It is a unique version of the carol, with an expanded story and vibrant, unusual colors. Check out The Friendly Beasts by Laura Nelson Baker, illustrated by Nicolas Sidjakov, 1957.
We are now officially halfway through the 25 Days of Christmas Books for 2015! While this makes me a bit stressed out as I still have so much to do in preparation for the holiday; I find a sweet, simple book like this one helps me take a deep breath and refocus myself and our family’s hurried schedule. My copy of this is a board book, which is proving helpful for my less-than-gentle younger daughter who loves to look through it multiple times a day. It contains all the aspects of Christmas she finds exciting: dogs, popcorn, Christmas trees, babies, Santa, candy canes, cookies, reindeer, ducks, donkeys, Joseph, Mary, and baby Jesus. Whew! Yes, it is all here in this very short, very sweet, rhyming message about the true celebration for Christmas. Here is What Is Christmas? by Michelle Medlock Adams, illustrated by Amy Wummer, 2006.
The first week of Advent is finished and to start the new week, I thought this book would be perfect as we prepare our hearts for Christmas. A story about a mouse, making room, and the manger that will warm your heart and possibly choke you up a little too. Take a peek at Mortimer’s Christmas Manger by Karma Wilson, illustration by Jane Chapman, 2005.
Merry Christmas! We have reached the end of yet another 25 Days of Christmas picture books. This season went so fast, and yet when I look back at the first books posted this December, it seems like ages ago. How is that possible? As I suspect no one will be visiting today, I will share a simple, vintage Little Golden Book that has sat on my family’s bookshelves for years. It is only appropriate to finish with a Nativity story and what better than a classic Eloise Wilkin styled one. Here is The Christmas Story by Jane Werner Watson, illustrations by Eloise Wilkin, 1956.
Three more days until Christmas, which means three more books in our Advent countdown! Today we have another fun book by Tomie dePaola, that is an illustrated version of a play about the Nativity story. It is such a fun concept to draw characters having a play and I love all the ways dePaola pictures the set and costumes. Here is The Christmas Pageant by Tomie dePaola, 1978.
It’s day 12 in our book journey and that means we are basically halfway there! Christmas is in 12 days. I am so not ready, but the celebration and preparations continue. Today’s books is very unique. I read it cold turkey with our toddler the other day and I was completely surprised by its format and illustrations and story. Even more surprising was that my daughter loved it. It seemed a little slow-paced and not a lot for visual cues, but I was wrong and she was enthralled. This is a beautiful, childish retelling of the Christmas story. A sister and brother play pretend and recreate the Nativity together. Enjoy sneaking into their playtime with Our Very Own Christmas by Annette Langen & Mariji Tolman, 2012.
I am so excited about today’s book for our Christmas picture book countdown! Although this one is from 1981, I had never seen it until this year when I was browsing Christmas books for this series. I enjoy Tomie dePaola’s work and he is quite a classic for children’s books, but wow! This is going to be one of my new favorites of his. Join me in admiring The Friendly Beasts: an old English Christmas Carol by Tomie dePaola, 1981.
December 2 is upon us (and almost gone! Still getting back into writing, so bear with my belatedness.) For today, we read a simple Nativity story by one of my favorite simple illustrators, Dick Bruna. His work is so stripped down that many assume it is easy, but he is an excellent creator and completely fascinating to children. He knows just the right way to tell a story and his linework is firm and no-nonsense with flat, solid colors. I requested this book for last Christmas and have been impatiently waiting to share it until this year. So have a peek at Dick Bruna’s lovely story, The Christmas Book, 1964.