Tuesday, November 22, 2011

It's a Picture Book Day! Advent Style!

        I probably should say:

It is a Picture Book a Day!!!

     Living a literature-based life means, of course, that books picture in most parts of our lives......especially picture books.........and Advent is no exception. In fact, the only exception about Advent and books is that this season in our life is particularly picture book heavy. I would say that we own somewhere between 60 to 100 picture books themed on Advent & Christmas. I am pleased to say that most of them were found while treasure-hunting through every children's book section at every thrift store that I have ever visited.  I look at that section first.......of course.

     When my children were young, I worked hard to keep Advent on this side of Christmas.....saving Christmas celebrating for Christmas Day and beyond. I only brought the books out on Christmas morning and we did the best that we could to read these during the Twelve Days of Christmas.

     After about five years of this, I realized that we really were not getting to spend much time with the special books in the way that I desired. What to do???

     Funny that it really was so simple.......but it dawned on me that the children would be better prepared to greet their Infant Savior on Christmas morn if they had been reading about His coming during all of Advent. And I was right!

     Then, as our collection grew, setting the whole lot of the books out at the beginning of Advent was just too much. The children would look through all of the books over in the first week and then only at their favorites the rest of Advent.

     One year, I decided to bring about ten books out once a week, on each Sunday of Advent. That worked well. The children looked forward to their old favorites and made new friends with the other books.

     And then, my youngest, my wee fella, was old enough to enjoy the books. I came up with a plan to have his older siblings wrap up enough books for each day of Advent. I set them all under our home altar where he happily grabbed a book to unwrap each day. This was definitely a happy Advent memory in the making. 

     I usually put the older siblings to work wrapping those books for him. Makes it more likely to get done.....  In those few years when I have been unable to get the books wrapped, I let him pull a book out of the box with his eyes closed. That was an acceptable substitute. 

     Only a few more days to go.......and we will begin making new Advent memories, inspired by our old family traditions.

     Do you have any special ways of sharing picture books with your children during the Advent season?



P.S. As I said on Facebook earlier this evening: God bless the husbands who -every single year for decades- get  the Advent boxes down from the rafters......including those four boxes of books.  : )


  1. I love your idea of only bringing a set amount out each week! going to think about that, I admit I never wrap, seems too much work, but you have me thinking now.

    1. Sometimes I wrap....but most times I don't wrap...... I just bring out a couple each day.......I have about 100...possibly......and my little person watches for what is coming next....always old favorites. St. Nicholas usually brings new books....if I have any.....or they will be under the Christmas tree.

      Oh...and *I* rarely did the wrapping....older children usually love to do it as part of the joy of surprising the youngers. Mine are too old now to enjoy that....they KNOW it is a chore now. ;)

  2. I would love to know the titles you include during this season. Looking to begin new family traditions of my own.

  3. I'm with Sonya--please can you share some of your favorites? (Maybe you will link up to Brandy's post on this!) I have only one or two Christmas books yet and want to choose the best to build my collection.

    1. Harmony, I am so sorry that I never got a chance to respond to this.......since we are "neighbors", I meant to tell you to come on by and see my collection of Advent/Christmas books. Of course they are all put up and out of the way for the season. I will have all of them down at the beginning of Advent this year......in time for you to pick a few out to purchase in time for Christmas.....so, just remind me.....and come on by and see them in person. I would love to share my favorites with you and your littles. God bless!


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