Monday, December 16, 2013

Reading Under the Tree

Since I happen to love books (you knew that already didn't ya?) it made perfect sense for our family to collect Christmas books to read for the holiday season.  In a perfect world I would have bought one special book each year to add, but hey, who can stop at just one book?  Or M&M's...just saying.

Anyway, through the years we have added Christmas books to our collection and now even house them in a cute little basket a friend gave us.  They go in front of the fireplace at whatever house we are currently in and are there to read the entire month of December.  As the kids have gotten older a few more chapter books were added and they tended to read them more on their own.  One year we read one book a night, often while lying under the lights of the Christmas tree.  (That might have been the year my oldest son wanted to sleep there as well!)  Now that we have a younger kiddo back in the mix, I have joyfully gone back to reading the books out loud.  Fun memories surround every one of them since some have been around for 19 years!  That, by the way, just makes the 19 year old old - not me!

It is hard to pick our favorites since when I asked, everyone had a different opinion, but I did try to narrow it down for you.  If I was an amazing professional blogger I would have them all tagged for affiliate money making on my part, but for now you just have to settle for hey, Michele said these were good, and I will settle for no money! ;)

The Soldier's Night Before Christmas! - Honestly, it is a little corny, but being a military family, it still makes me teary every time I read it and hey, bonus - a helicopter flies in the "jolly old elf". (you do know we don't "do" Santa here, right?  But we don't avoid him like the plague either.)

Who is Coming to Our House? - The sweetest book EVER!  My mom introduced it to us when she taught preschool and the older kiddos in this house can recite it practically.  We have two copies of it.  It is about the animals preparing a place for Jesus to be born.  Make believe completely, but I do not care.  I love it!

The Story of Christmas - This copy is bilingual and we got it for CJ!  Since he has been taking Spanish lessons weekly from his Guatemalan teacher and improves his Spanish daily, I cannot wait to see how well he understands this one this year.  Hey, maybe even my accent will sound better, who knows!

The Little House Christmas Treasury - Got this one a few years ago because I thought we should move on to reading older stories.  We never did read it out loud because the girls snuck it read it on their own. Classic stories you will recognized it you are a Little House fan.

Skipping Christmas - Yes, this is where Christmas With the Kranks came from.  Again, pure silliness, but makes me giggle every year when I read it.  If you want a quick read that will put a smile on your face, this little book is it.  Plus, it seriously puts all kinds of ideas in my head.  Like leaving next year for Christmas and THAT being our gift to each other.  You just never know! *Please note, this is an book for adults and NOT for kids!

The Jesus Tree, Song of the Stars and God Gave Us Christmas - All just super sweet children's books that further explain the true meaning of Christmas and remind us to refocus our hearts on what is important.  We love fun around here but I do feel very strongly about our kids knowing EXACTLY why we choose to celebrate Christmas.  It is not just an excuse to give presents!

The Christmas Alphabet - This is a simple alphabet book, but that is all that is simple about it! The paper cut out work in it is amazing and has always captured our children's attention at any age.  It was given to us many years ago by a dear friend.

Jotham's Journey - Last year we tried something a bit different - we picked up this book and read it as an advent "devotional" each night leading up to Christmas.  In fictitious story form, it tells the story of a boy who eventually gets to see Jesus.  I was not sure about it at first, but even the older kids began asking for it each night and we enjoyed making it a part of our nightly family devotions.  This year I picked up a second book by the same author called Tabitha's Travels. I am looking forward to seeing what it will hold.

And of course, the true Christmas Story found in the Bible.  While we love board books about Jesus' birth, to silly books like Big Bird's Sweet Surprise, to classics like Twas the Night Before Christmas and The Nutcracker, nothing can replace to true story of our Savior's Birth - the most precious story and gift we will ever receive.  If you have never read it or if it has just  been a while, I would encourage you, dear friend, to start in Luke.

May The Lord bless you this Christmas and always!


Fellow Schoolhouse Crew members are also chatting about Christmas books this month!  Be sure to visit them by clicking on the button below to find even more books to add to your list! (Goes live 12/18)


  1. What a lovely collection of books for Christmas! I don't think I have heard of any of them. I did not know there was a treasury of Little House Christmas stories. That sounds like one I would love to have in my home. And "Who is Coming to Our Home" sounds like another one I have to look for.
    Thanks for sharing.

  2. I have never heard of these titles and will definitely look into them! :-)

  3. Oh I am definitely going to check out Skipping Christmas! I was looking for a holiday book for myself. Thanks for sharing!


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