My friend, Sarah, recently asked for some Christmas book ideas for her sweet almost-two-year old daughter. My friend, Monica, has a great list over at her place, as does Haley at Carrots for Michaelmass and I’m sure many others. I’ve wanted to compile a list of ours for my own records so this gave me a good excuse. We’ve checked out many wonderful and beautiful Christmas picture books and read-alouds throughout the years and have slowly built up our own little treasury. I keep them in our special Christmas book basket and getting it out again every year is another one of my favorites of the season. I set it out in different parts of the house and let the kids read through them at their leisure. When we can, we read one together. I used to wait until Christmas to get it out but I’ve since realized it’s all part of “preparing” (Advent) for celebrating Christ. Aside from our St. Nicholas books, here’s what you’ll find in our…
Christmas Book Basket
The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey – I love everything about this book, but most especially the illustrations – they pull you in and bring you right there into the story. I feel like I could reach out and feel the smooth carved wood of the figurines. There is also a a movie made from the story that our family enjoys watching during this time.
B Is for Bethlehem (Board Book) – We love this simple Christmas board book and apparently so do many others judging by the price. I didn’t realize I really did own a treasure. 🙂 If you can find this at the library or maybe your local book stores it really is a great one. I think this was one of the first ones we got for our daughter when she was about 2 or 3 and she still loves reading it and now reads it to her own younger brothers.
The Christmas Story (Board Book) – Another simple board book that easy enough for little fingers to hold in their laps and turn the pages. Our little toddler loves pointing to the animals and waiting for me to make their appropriate noises.
The True Night Before Christmas: While the World Was Asleep – this is also a special one for us since it’s written/illustrated by locals. I grew up listening to Robert and Vanessa Condreay’s harmonious voices and guitar acoustics so it was easy for me to imagine them singing this as I read it.
The Crippled Lamb – Oh Max Lucado, you really have been given a beautiful talent! I’ve yet to read a book of his I don’t like. (Though I haven’t read them all yet.) Again, beautiful illustrations with a story that’s bound to bring tears to anyone’s eyes. So beautiful.
The Very First Christmas – I love how this one’s done. A mother has to answer real questions from her inquisitive son about Jesus and Christmas and does a great job of explaining things beyond the average basic picture book. If you are looking for a picture book about Christmas that contains good historical facts you’ll like this one.
The Adventures of Loupio, Volume 1: The Encounter and other Stories – This book was given to our seven-year old last year from his super awesome godparents and it’s become a favorite! What better way to combine knights, saints, virtues, and adventure? Since it’s the first “comic book” we’ve had, it took a little bit of time for everyone to get used to the different reading format. This year, it’s been cool watching and listening to my son read it and follow along mostly on his own. I noticed there is a Volume 2 and a Volume 3 that I’m sure the boys would love since they’ve read this first over and over a good number of times now.
The Twelve Days of Christmas – The first book in the basket in the picture at the top is The Twelve Days of Christmas A Secret Song of Faith. However, I looked for it everywhere and it’s no were online to be found! Isn’t that weird? Something Amazon actually doesn’t have! It’s from Regina Press but they don’t have it either. The only thing I found that looks close to it is this one. The pictures and style look familiar so I’m betting this would be a lovely one to use for a quick daily read-aloud during the Christmastide.
Lastly, I mentioned that St. Nicholas would bring a new book this year and he did!
An Omelet Fit for a King – by my good and joyful friend, Maria Stewart. Seriously, I’ve never met a more joyful woman, wife, and mother. Her generous heart comes alive in this story of a young maiden who teaches a whole kingdom about the gift of “E.G.G.S” (Eyes, Gift, Glory, Servant). It is a very enjoyable family read aloud with beautiful and vital life lessons.