After seeing the chaos of Black Friday reflected in the news, I pulled my children close and reminded them that we don’t have to be like that. My oldest (who just turned eighteen) said, “Isn’t it ironic that the day after we give thanks, we trample people to death to get a better deal on something we probably could have afforded anyway?”
But it’s easy to get caught up in the hype of Christmas—stores start piping in the music shortly after Halloween. This year a few stores snuck Christmas ornaments on shelves next to cornucopias and Indian corn. I bet they sold more than a couple, too, because Christmas is like pumpkin pie on Thanksgiving—yes, you just stuffed yourself and probably should wait, but why? There’s the pie right there…
But there is a certain joy in waiting.
Of quieting your heart in expectation of what is to come.
To me, that’s what the season between Thanksgiving and Christmas is, quiet expectation. Expectation reflected in the manger scene by our front door—Mary and Joseph near an empty cradle, waiting.
That expectation is also reflected by the pile of books under our Christmas tree. It waits for dinner to be done, dishes to be cleared, hot cocoa to be marshmallowed, and the fire to be crackling. Then the children gather around Daddy and he reads one story each night between Thanksgiving and Christmas.
My favorites are the calm, quiet stories. Here are a few on the top of the pile:
If you haven’t yet discovered Deborah Underwood, you’re in for a treat.
Her characters are gentle natured woodland animals getting ready for Christmas, but without the hustle and bustle of other books.
Check out the book trailer below!
Gorgeously illustrated story about a boy hearing the Christmas story for the first time.
Another sweet book. A little tree wishes to be part of something—anything—and winds up being part of something he never could have imagined.
How about you? Which Christmas books make your family’s must-read list?