December 4, 2013

Children's Book Advent Calendar.

So!  Wow!  The Christmas Season is in full swing all of a sudden!  And this year I feel like the big kids are really in a sweet spot for enjoying it.  The 4 year old is so, so excited about everything and the 2.5 year old is old enough to actually get it this time around.

Decorating a Christmas tree w 3 small children is a frustrating, ridiculous, labor intensive process but I think we're almost done!  #christmas #tree

Enjoying some squash on his first Thanksgiving. And yes, his eyebrows help him keep his head up. #thanksgiving #whyimthankful
I don't really get it but I like the shiny lights!
So this year we wanted to do something really special to count down to the big day:

Book Advent Calendar

A book Advent Calendar!  The concept is simple.  I found 24 holiday books, wrapped them all, and every day the kids get to open and read one.

Both big kids are SO into books right now so this works perfectly.  And it fits in really well with the 1000 Books by Kindergarten that my daughter is working on.  Wins all around.  I tried find a variety of books telling a wide range of holiday stories.  Really cover all of our bases with this Christmas thing.  I have both secular and religious stories, a few licensed things (cars Christmas?  really?), and the major holiday classics like the Grinch.  I used the hive mind of twitter and my librarian friend for recommendations to fill out the rest - which lead to some great discoveries like Night Tree and Olive, the Other Reindeer.

Book Advent Calendar

To keep the cost down I used quite a few books that we already had.  Over half were from my very own attic.  The kids haven't seen them in a year and presented this way they become new again!

Book Advent Calendar ready to go!  They get to open 1 per day from now until Christmas. #advent #book #read #christmas

I laid out the order of the books for Maximum Holiday Awesome.  So they will receive the Polar Express the day before we watch the movie.  And my daughter will open Angelina Ballerina and The Nutcracker Story leading up to seeing the Nutcracker at Ohio Dance Theater.  All of it ends with the big finale which Matt will read on Christmas Eve:

Book Advent Calendar

 Here's the books I'm using broken down week by week:

Book Advent Calendar
Week 1:  The First Christmas, How the Grinch Stole Christmas, The Biggest Snowman Ever (the mouse in this story has the same name as the dude!), The Polar Express, C is for Celebrate, the Twelve Days of Christmas, The Christmas Story (I actually swapped this one out for the Rudolf the Red Nosed Reindeer Golden Book that follows the traditional Christmas special.  I already had a nativity story this week and the dude has been singing Rudolph nonstop so it seemed to fit better.)

Book Advent Calendar
Week 2:  Olive, the Other Reindeer, Fancy Nancy's Splendiferous Christmas, Spot's First Christmas, The Super Friends Save Christmas, Christmas in the Manger, a Cars Christmas, Angelina's Christmas.

Book Advent Calendar
Week 3:  Charlie the Christmas Kitty (this missing books were on order from her school's scholastic book program when I took these pictures.  I'll add them in once they get here), Night Tree, The Animals' Christmas Eve, The Story of the Nutcracker Ballet, The Poky Little Puppy's First Christmas, Maisy's Snowy Christmas Eve, Dinosaur Christmas.

Book Advent Calendar
Week 4:  Ituku's Christmas Journey, Pete the Cat's Christmas, and finally The Night Before Christmas.

Overall I think I have a pretty well balanced and awesome collection assembled - one that they will enjoy for years!    Yay Books!

Reading the great grand kids How the Grinch Stole Christmas.
Bonus Picture - my grandparents reading the kids How the Grinch Stole Christmas.
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