It’s mid-December. Stockings are hung, trees are trimmed, and lights are twinkling on houses and storefronts throughout the city. Christmas shopping is in full force, which for me, means that the UPS delivery guy and I are becoming quite close. (Seriously, can I get an amen for free 2-day shipping?!?)
More importantly though, families are coming together and parents are sharing the magic of Christmas with their children…through experiences, music, movies, and of course — books. We all know and love the classic Christmas tales: The Night Before Christmas, The Polar Express, Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer. But there are plenty of new stories that deserve to be added to your collection as well.
1. The Spirit of Christmas – Nancy Tillman books are some of my favorites to read to the kids. The rhyming verses roll off of your tongue and the illustrations are just plain dreamy. This book with it’s sweet message is no exception. Confession: I may have gotten a little teary eyed the first few times I read it.
2. Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree – Though this book is over 50 years old, it may still be new to many. It’s a heartwarming story that teaches children about the joy of sharing, especially at Christmastime.
3. A Wish to Be a Christmas Tree – An overgrown pine is passed by year after year and becomes too big to be a Christmas tree. When his friends in the woods see how sad it has made him, they have a plan to lift his spirits. A sweet story about love, kindness and true friendships.
4. ‘Twas the Mouse Who Saved Christmas – This is story about a little mouse in Santa’s workshop who accidentally rips a child’s name off the nice list. The best part is, the book is personalized so that it’s your child’s name on the list. My daughter loves hearing her name on each page…and luckily, the mouse saves the day and gets her back on Santa’s list!
5. Humphrey’s First Christmas – This story, both humorous and touching, is told from the perspective of a camel that is traveling to the stable were baby Jesus is born. This is another favorite in our house, because you just can’t not love Humphrey!
6. Olive the Other Reindeer – Olive the dog thinks she might actually be a reindeer after she hears the words “all of the other reindeer” on the radio…so she heads to the North Pole to help Santa! Though she can’t fly, she uses her doggy senses to contribute to the team and get all of the toys where they need to go on time. We love this cute and funny book!
7. Bear Stays Up for Christmas – Just like the rest of The Bear Books, this one is a sweet tale about friendship and a big sleepy bear. The pictures of bear and his friends decorating his cave for Christmas will definitely put your little ones in the holiday spirit.
8. Little Blue Truck’s Christmas – If you’ve got a Little Blue Truck fan in your house, then you definitely need this book in your Christmas collection. It’s got all the charm of the original book, plus counting, holiday cheer, and the grand finale: real Christmas tree lights on the last page. I can’t tell you how many times we’ve opened and closed that last page just to watch the twinkling lights.
9. Snowmen at Christmas – A companion book to Snowmen at Night, this funny little story gets lots of giggles at our house. My daughter loves all the silly things that the snowmen do, and it makes me excited for the first big snow when she make one of her own. I’m sure her imagination will be running wild!
10. God Gave Us Christmas – As much as I love a good tale about Santa and his elves, it’s important to me that my kids understand the real reason that we celebrate Christmas. This story is about a little bear who sets out to find Santa with his mom, but what he finds instead is God. A great read for kids of all ages!
What did I miss? Share your favorite Christmas books in the comments below!