Christmas Books

It's that time again! Time to pull out our favorite Christmas books, grab a few cookies and hot cocoa, and share wonderful stories of the season. Do you have your favorite Christmas books? I know we do.

However, every year, we try to find a few new books to read. Three new to us books this year follow. Have you read them? If not, we liked them so much, we recommend you search your library shelves for a copy to borrow.

The Family Christmas Tree Book, by Tomie De Paola
A great informative book on the history of the Christmas tree as told by parents and a grandma while a family selects a tree, takes it home, and decorates it.  Includes these wonderful little tid bits: German customs of Christbaum trees (a tree decorated with apples for Adam and Eve, roses for Virgin Mary, and wafers for the Christ Child); Pyramid (a wooden structure in pyramid shape decorated with evergreen branches and candles); and Lichstock (a flat triangular shaped candle stick rack). There is also a mention of the year President Teddy Roosevelt did not want a tree and his son hid one in his closet.

The Trees of the Dancing Goats, by Patricia Polacco
This is another endearing book by Polacco. A little girl and her family prepare for Hanukkah festivities.  Candles are made by her Babushka (grandma), her Grampa makes wooden animals for the children's gifts, and the little girl polishes the menorah. Latkes and roasted chickens are made, anticipating a joyful celebration. However, an epidemic strikes the farming community. It is scarlet fever. Most of the nearby families are sick. The Jewish family decides to help their ill Christian neighbors celebrate Christmas. They cuts small Christmas trees and decorates each one with a goat (made by Grampa) and some paper garlands. Then, they make more chickens and latkes. A beeswax candle is included in each basket of food. All their neighbors are blessed by their selfless actions. It is a heartwarming story.

One Hundred Shining Candles, by Janet Lunn
Taking place in the backwoods of upper Canada sometime in the 1800's, Lucy and her family have no presents this Christmas. Despite their extreme poverty, Lucy and Dan, her younger brother set about to surprise their mother with candles for Christmas. It is an idea born from their teacher's description of holiday decorations in the big cities. It is a beautiful story of children trying to bless their parents.

Related Posts:
Christmas Past - Historical Read Alouds
Christmas Joy - Read Alouds
Christmas Carols in Books
Good King Wenceslas

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