I love Christmas traditions; especially when it involves books and snuggling together with my babes. It may be one of my favorite places in the world.
A few years ago, I wrapped 24 books and then unwrapped one to read everyday until Christmas. It was so much fun! But the last two years, I just haven’t had the time or the energy to wrap the books. I’m finally giving myself grace as I’ve realized the books don’t need to be wrapped to be enjoyed. The kids and I still choose one of our 24 favorite Christmas books everyday to read as a countdown to Christmas.
Our favorite Christmas book list has changed over the years as the kids mature and grow and as our tastes have changed, so here is an updated list of our 24 favorite Christmas books. There are so many good ones and it was hard to decide, so if you’re interested, you can also read our Christmas favorites from the past that got bumped from our list.
1. Christmas Tapestry by Patricia Polacco (gets me choked up and in tears every time I read this. Sophia, my oldest girl, might cry a little too)
2. The Crippled Lamb by Max Lucado
3. The Tale of Three Trees: A Traditional Folktale retold by Angela Elwell Hunt (this one works for Easter as well)
4. The Legend of the Candy Cane by Lori Walburg
5 . The Nutcracker by E.T.A. Hoffman and illustrated by Lisbeth Zwerger (A friend told me about this illustrator and I am grateful; thank you, Ayme. Lisbeth’s artwork is breathtaking)
6. A Christmas Dress for Ellen by Thomas S. Monson (another one that has me in tears every time)
7. Christmas Day in the Morning by Pearl S. Buck
8. The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey by Susan Wojciechowski (I recommend buying this book new as it comes with a CD)
9. The Gift of the Magi by O. Henry and illustrated by Lisbeth Zwerger
10. The Other Wise Man by Henry Van Dyke
12. Silent Night written and illustrated by Will Moses (I love the illustrations by Will Moses! So much so that I just bought a puzzle from his artwork for the kids for Christmas for our something we need.)
13. The Story of Holly and Ivy by Rumer Godden and illustrated by another of my favorite illustrators, Barbara Cooney (love her)
14. The Christmas Doll by Elvira Woodruff
15. The Carpenter’s Gift: A Christmas Tale about the Rockefeller Center Tree by David Rubel
16. The Gift of the Christmas Cookie: Sharing the True Meaning of Jesus’ Birth by Dandi Daley Mackall
17. What Think Ye of Chrismas by Ester Rasband
18. The Last Straw by Fredrick H. Thury
19. Papa Panov’s Special Day retold by Mig Holder
20. The Christmas Cat by Efner Tudor Homes and illustrated by Tasha Tudor
21. Grandfather’s Christmas Tree by Thomas Locker
22. The Year of the Perfect Christmas Tree: An Appalachian Story (Picture Puffins) by Gloria Houston and illustrated by Barbara Cooney
23. Christmas on the Farm by Bob Artley
24. Christmas Farm by Mary Lyn Ray Little House Christmas by Laura Ingalls Wilder (thank you again, Ayme for this recommendation)
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Some of the books are expensive, I know (even when you buy used). Consider buying your children one book each year for Christmas (for “something to read”) and grow your collection slowly over time. Or you could buy a couple of quality Christmas chapter books and read one chapter a day out of it until Christmas; books like A Little House Christmas Treasury: Festive Holiday Stories by Laura Ingalls, Louisa May Alcott’s Christmas Treasury by Louisa May Alcott, Christmas Stories: Heartwarming Classics of Angels, a Manger, and the Birth of Hope by Max Lucado, A Charles Dickens Christmas, or Christmas in My Heart: A Timeless Treasury of Heartwarming Stories by Joe Wheeler.
The point is to read a little bit of Christmas a day while snuggling on the couch with your littles (no matter how big they are) 🙂
What are some of your Christmas favorites? I would love to hear…