Sunday, December 15, 2013

news from the book nook: Christmas stories

This edition of news from the book nook is filled with Christmas cheer. If you're new here, check out this post to see what this series is all about (and thanks for stopping by!).
Christmas Eve was always one of the best days of the year. The anticipation. The preparation. The quiet. The love. The candlelight. And the day we received an early Christmas present - a new family Christmas story book. Through the years, we've accumulated quite a collection. It's always fun to pull at the box of books each season and read through some of our favorites. Wondering what they are? I've included some of my favorites in this blog post. Hope you find a new festive favorite for your family!

Santa Claus and His Elves by Mauri Kunnas
This book holds a special place in my heart. Hands down one of my favorite children's books of all time. If you've ever wondered what life is like for Santa and his hardworking elves - wonder no more. Beautiful, intricate illustrations and a magical story of life at the North Pole make this perhaps the best book about Santa of all time!
Gingerbread Baby by Jan Brett
I mentioned before that gingerbread men are beloved in my family. Jan Brett's rendition of the classic gingerbread man story is a favorite. My preschoolers loved this book so much so that we read it everyday for a week.

Great Joy by Kate Dicamillo and illustrated by Bagram Ibatouline
A inspiring story of how one little girl shares the Joy of Christmas with those in need.

The Night Before Christmas originally by Clement Clarke Moore
Such a classic! In my family, my dad still reads this one aloud before we head to bed Christmas Eve. Some childhood traditions are just too good not to continue. The copy we have is "an exact reprint of an early edition" which basically means it has vintage illustrations and type. I love the oldness of the edition, but I've seen some newer versions that look just as magical.

The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg
Like most things, the book is wayyyyy better than the movie! This is one of those rare children's books that captures the magic of childhood and believing in both words and illustrations. We read this one aloud as a family too!

The Jolly Christmas Postman by Janet and Allan Ahlberg
This book is a sequel to The Jolly Postman and is filled with Christmas cards and letters to Red Riding Hood, Humpty Dumpty, and other favorite fairy tale characters. The story ends with a trip to the North Pole to deliver some children's letters and there may even be a special one for the postman too!

Silver Packages: An Appalachian Christmas Story by Cynthia Rylant and illustrated by Chris Soentpiet
A beautiful story of a Christmas train that comes through the mountains with a man who brings silver package Christmas gifts for the children. One boy, Frankie, wants one specific thing every year that he never receives. When Frankie is older he realizes he was given just what he needed each Christmas.

How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss
No Christmas book list would be complete without the Grinch. "Maybe Christmas, he thought, doesn't come from a store. Maybe Christmas....perhaps...means a little bit more!" P.S. I highly recommend the illustrated movie too!

Of course, the best story of all is the true story of Christmas which far exceeds anything Santa could write or give. As the angel told the shepherds,
"Do not be afraid; for behold, I bring you good news of great joy which will be for all the people; for today in the city of David there has been born for you a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.This will be a sign for you: you will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” And suddenly there appeared with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying, Glory to God in the highest, And on earth peace among men with whom He is pleased.”  ~ Luke 2:10-14

Merry Christmas, friends!
Oh, if you are wondering when we got a cat, we didn't. We happened to be snowed/iced in at my parent's this morning and Pockets was helping with the photo shoot. He a sneaky cat masquerading as a children's book lover.

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