Although I still shake my head a bit over all the things I pin and don’t actually do, I am still pleased whenever I pull off anything I find on Pinterest. With the help of some early Christmas gifts from a few family members, we will soon be pulling off one of my biggest Pinterest projects yet – a countdown of books leading up to Christmas.
I saw the idea last year and started collecting titles then, but this year I decided I really wanted to make it happen. We don’t have an advent calendar of any kind and don’t do the whole Elf on the Shelf thing, but Harrison seems old enough this year to be able to get into a countdown and naturally I love the whole book focus. And again, thanks to our own little family of elves, we were able to get them all ordered and delivered and ready to go before Dec. 1. Here is what they look like wrapped and ready to go:
Our plan is to take this stack of wrapped books and stick it under the tree before Sunday. Then we’ll have the kids pick a new “present” each day to open. More likely, HD & RL will take turns every other day doing the selecting, but you get the gist. This way they will have something to open and read each day leading up to Christmas and each opened book will hang out for the month in our living room to be read as many times as they like. To be honest, I hadn’t read all of these titles before buying/asking for them, so I have no idea what the kids (or I) will think of some of them. Ben was reading some to me tonight as I wrapped them and wow, some are too wordy or too heavy for a 4, 2, and less-than-1, but they will grow with our kids. Right?! Really, though, I hope to do this from now until forever and I really hope it is something our little family can look forward to year after year (and yes, I really do plan to keep this up even when they are eye rolling teenagers because that’s how much I love my littles!).
In case you’re interested in doing something similar, I broke down our list of 25 for you and am including pictures so you can see the pretty covers. I’m also including a little commentary here and there, because you know, I’m wordy like that! Perhaps I’ll also do a follow up post in January to let you all know how this little tradition went during its inaugural year!
The Nutcracker and the Mouse King by E.T.A. Hoffmann *So many words! Will have to read selectively for a few years.
Making a Friend by Marc Rosenthal
Thomas’ Christmas Delivery by Rev. W. Awdry *Thomas has been so dear to us during HD’s early years, we couldn’t help ourselves!
Richard Scarry’s Best Christmas Book Ever! *HD LOVES Busy Town!
The Night Before Christmas by Clement C. Moore *Classic!
Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol (picture book version) *first page talks about death; might have to read selectively for a few years on this one!
Olivia Helps with Christmas by Ian Falconer
Christmas in the Big Woods by Laura Ingalls Wilder *LIW is one of my childhood heros; love this!
The Legend of the Candy Cane by Lori Walburg
The Legend of St. Nicholas by Dandi Daley Mackall
Stick Man by Julia Donaldson *Oh, the rhyming cuteness. Loved this when Ben read it to me as I wrapped.
Bear Stays Up for Christmas by Karma Wilson
The True Night Before Christmas by Timothy Penland
Home for Christmas by Jan Brett
The Spirit of Christmas by Nancy Tillman
Jingle Bells by Kathleen N. Daly *A Little Golden Book given to us by Ben’s mom from when he was little (possibly before??)!
The Christmas Story by Jane Werner *Another LGB from Grandma Deb.
The Berenstain Bears Meet Santa Bear by Stan & Jan Berenstain *My childhood copy!
Santa is Coming to Nebraska by Steve Smallman *Saw this at the office store and couldn’t help myself since Hastings is actually named on one of the pages.
The Christmas Magic by Lauren Thompson *Don’t judge a book by its cover, blah blah blah – I love the cover of this book and can’t wait to read it with the kiddos!
Christmas Eve Good Night by Doug Cushman
Margret and H. A. Rey’s Merry Christmas, Curious George
How the Grinch Stole Christmas by Dr. Seuss *From my parent’s house, possibly my mom’s childhood copy?
The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg *Classic!
The Twelve Days of Christmas by Jan Brett *Love Jan Brett’s illustrations (and her original books, too).