New Christmas Books from 2017

I’ve loved Christmas books my entire life.  I treasure my copy of Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree from childhood.  I’m always eager to find new gems each year.  Below are my favorites this year.

Pick a Pine Tree

Pick A Pine Tree by Patricia Toht and illustrated by Jarvis – A festive read-aloud brimming with all the joy and excitement of Christmastime — beginning, of course, with picking out a tree!

Little Reindeer

The Little Reindeer by Nicola Killen – An enchanting Christmas story about a magical yet unlikely friendship between a little girl and a lost reindeer sure to be a Christmas classic lovingly told and illustrated with red foil highlights and interactive die cuts.


The 12 Days of Christmas by Greg Pizzoli – Elephant is delighted to get a gift, but as the twelve days of Christmas continue, presents pile higher and higher! A partridge in a pear tree? Cute! But soon, her dad despairs. Two turtle doves? THREE French hens?! And just what are they supposed to do with ten lords a-leaping? Kids will love each silly spread in this raucous take on the classic carol that is perfect for reading aloud around the fireplace.

Merry Christmas Peanut

Merry Christmas, Peanut! by Terry Border – A sweet (or is it salty?) Christmas story with heart, humor, and plenty of punny holiday cheer.

All summaries from publishers’ websites.



Fun With Cousins – But Only Two Books

Peanut Butter and CupcakeThe Troublemaker

ML’s cousins visited last weekend. Forty eight hours of fun, but only two books read out loud to them. I planned to share at least five. Want to know what kept this from happening?

  • Visiting a local park to ride the train and spin around on the historic carousel built in 1911.
  • Lunch at our favorite cafe.
  • Feeding the fish in the koi pond at the local garden store.
  • An elevator ride to the top of one of the few skyscrapers in our growing city.
  • A trip to the cupcake shop riding the free bus that circles downtown to get there.
  • Dinner at a restaurant where fresh seafood has been served since 1931.
  • A sleepover with cozy blankets on the floor with lots of whispering after lights out.
  • Visiting two rival colleges roughly ten miles apart.  My brother attended one.  I the other.
  • Lunch at a famous restaurant that serves some of the best southern cooking in the world.
  • Lots of creative play by two seven-year-old girls and one four-year-old boy.

The creative play idea began in a law firm office.  My brother visited with his former colleagues.  Not much fun for three active children.  Until one of the lawyers, who has grandchildren, gave them free reign with his office supplies.  Tape, rubber bands, paperclips.  He even let them rummage through his desk drawers looking for more.

When we arrived home the first afternoon, it was raining cats and dogs.  ML found the office supplies and craft materials.  They closed the door to her bedroom and got to work.  Somewhere along the way they decided to sell their wares to their parents, aunts and uncle.  They played this game three different times.  Making items on Friday afternoon; then selling them to us.  Saturday morning they woke up first and started making items to sell.  When my brother and his wife arrived from the hotel, the store opened.  Then, they chose to go home to make and sell more things Saturday afternoon, instead of getting cupcakes or ice cream.

See why we only read two books?  Peanut Butter & Cupcake by Terry Border was a hit with them.  To get an idea of this self proclaimed Humorist, Photographer and Earthling’s sense of humor check out “My Many Tries At My First Book Cover.”  I’m mad I didn’t discover this post about the books his publisher passed up on.  A peanut butter filled take on famous children’s books before their visit.

The other book we read was The Troublemaker by Lauren Castillo which I shared with you recently.  We watched the video that sparked the idea for the book.  If you haven’t seen it, you are missing out on a huge laugh.

CarouselDSC01158The Wares