Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
Then low and behold, what do I see?
Two glowing eyes twinkling under the tree.
“Which one should we choose, the big one or small?”
Each night a child will choose only one from them all.
Inside each lays a book, some old and some new.
Stories of dreams and folklore, and some that are true.
Each night only one may be opened and read.
Before the clock chimes and all go to bed.
Stories of Christmases past and winter weather too.
Tales I want to share from me down to you.
So each night before Christmas beginning December one.
We open a present and have some family fun
Until no more presents are to be had,
And then it’ll be Christmas, for which we’ll be glad.
Merry Christmas to all and to all read with cheer.
As you sit down to read with those you hold dear.
For money and presents and toys and more,
Last only a moment before hitting the floor.
But time spent with family can ne’er be replaced.
That and good books outlast time and space.
Merry Christmas to all and to all I will say,
Remember, the real reason why we celebrate this day!
Countdown to Christmas with Books
Several months ago a friend shared with me one way she counts down the days till Christmas with her children, all while encouraging literacy and enjoying some family time during the crazy Christmas season–book presents.
Each year, she wraps twenty-four books and places them all under the tree by December first. These books are a compilation of both old and new, mostly centered around Christmas and the winter season to help everyone get “in the mood.”
Beginning on December first, the children collaboratively (or alternately) get to choose one book to unwrap each night. Then, everyone sits down to read the book together before heading to bed. Many of the books they probably opened the year before, but the children don’t seem to mind because they still get to open a present each and every night leading up to Christmas.
I thought this was such a great idea that I’ve decided to try it with my family this year. Since we have fairly young children, we’ve been looking to explore what traditions we are going to begin for our Christmas celebrations, and I definitely thought this should be one to consider adding to the list.
Getting 24 Books
I’ve wrapped twenty-four picture books all centered around Christmas and colder weather, used only books we had in our library that have either been given to us by family members, found at a thrift store, or hand-me-downs from when I was a kid. And can you believe it–we had EXACTLY 24! Sometimes I just stare in amazement at God’s handy work.
I was even able to wrap them in old Christmas paper my mother-in-law found at a thrift store, so the grand total cost for this experiment–nothing!
We’ll have to keep you posted on how this goes, but I can hardly wait until Peanut gets to open the first book and see what it’s all about. If all goes well, then maybe we’ll look at adding some new books for next year.
Need some Christmas book ideas? Check out these gems for starters as well as garage sales, thrift stores, and second-hand stores. You may be amazed at what you find.
Speaking of which, what are your favorite Christmas picture books?
If you have any favorites you’d like to share, please do. Make sure to include the title and author so we know what to look for when we go to the store.
Also, do you have any Christmas traditions, such as this, that you enjoy doing with your family?
If so, what? I’m always looking for frugal yet memorable ways to make Christmas special and meaningful for my family as I’m sure you are too.