Tag Archives: celebrate

Celebrating a Storybook Year – December

It’s the most wonderful time of the year – welcome to December. This month we have a very carefully curated list of our favorite Christmas and winter books to share. Our Christmas picture books are some of our very favorite, and reading them together is the best part of the holidays. We usually wrap our Advent books but this year we decided to just put them in a basket unwrapped so that we can enjoy them over and over again throughout the month.

We have several familiar and heartwarming stories for December, but as with every other month this year we have discovered some brand new favorites as well. We watched papa turn tragedy to joy by re-purposing an apple tree felled by a blizzard in “Apple Tree Christmas” and read about how the spirit of the season can help mend heartache and bring families together in “Holly & Ivy” and “The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey”. We saw kindness repaid with kindness in “Silver Packages”, “The Carpenter’s Gift” and “An Orange for Frankie.” We sat out in the forest drinking hot chocolate and singing Christmas carols with the family in “The Night Tree” and witnessed a miraculous real-life Christmas celebration in the midst of the Great War in “Christmas in the Trenches.” We sang our way through a Winter Wonderland and the Twelve Days of Christmas, fought the fearsome Mouse King in “The Nutcracker”, celebrated Christmas Eve with old friends Frog and Toad, and smiled to see the heart of the Grinch grow a full three sizes on Christmas morning…and that’s not even the half of it.

We have many outstanding selections in our basket this month, but what you see here are those we’ve picked these as our favorites. It wasn’t easy to narrow the list down, but we couldn’t have had more fun trying each book on for size…who knows, some of the books that didn’t make this list may show up at A Storybook Year in 2017.

Ho! Ho! Ho!

Celebrating a Storybook Year – August

We began the month of August with a night sky theme in mind. We read about the “Starry Messenger” Galileo Galilei, learned about the origins of Carl Sagan’s fascination with space in “Star Stuff”, and discovered a way to keep a star in your pocket for days when you don’t feel so shiny in Mary Lyn Ray’s “Stars”. We chased fireflies through the yard, soared into the night sky with a little girl who was determined to show the world she could fly, and went on an enchanting bed time journey in “The House in the Night”. We even found stars in places we didn’t expect, like on the cover of the book “The Wall” about growing up behind the Iron Curtain, or on the bellies of Dr. Seuss’ Sneetches.

Of course, there was plenty of other fun to go around this month. There were Morris Lessmore’s flying books, and historical tales about the Silk Road and the Nashua River. We took a timeless and familiar journey to Portsmouth Market with the Oxcart Man, and discovered a new and heartwarming journey on a “Train to Somewhere.” We ventured to London from darkest Peru, and our old friend Lentil reminded us that if we play the harmonica in the bathtub, the sound is improved 100 percent!

Taken as a whole, maybe you could call August our “Time of Wonder”, borrowing the title of an old favorite from Robert McCloskey about a family’s summer in Maine. I think that fits.