I’ve written many times about our Christmas Eve book tradition. Each year, I give the kids a Christmas book with a little note and the date inside. There is also an extra book that also gets the year inside, and that one is for the house. Each child gets their own book and when they grow up and have their own families to celebrate Christmas with, they will take them with them. The extra book for the house will stay with me, and hopefully, God willing, Wes and I will read them to our grandchildren.
I started this tradition 14 years ago, on William’s first Christmas. I wrap the books and give them to the kids with a new pair of Christmas pajamas. They open their books, put on new jammies, we read them, and send them to dream of sugar plums and reindeer. That is the idea, but you probably have kids and know that isn’t how it works. But that’s the intention.
This is one of those things you do as a mom that you think goes unnoticed or unappreciated, but when Ava and I were going through the books to add to my Amazon store, she told me how much she loves her books and how much she loves reading them each season.
I should also mention that they only come out in December. They get packed up with the decorations and the fact they have a short shelf life (how’s that for a pun?) makes them even more special. You know that the holidays are kicking into full gear when the book tubs come out.
We have a lot of Christmas books and some are more loved than others. Each year I try to pick something that represents where they are in their lives. Whether it is where we are living, something they are interested in, or something that I just think that they are going to like.
I had the kids go through the books and pick out ones they love the most. Some surprised me and some I put in here because I love reading them too.
We have a lot more Christmas books than just what is pictured. And many that could also be on this list, there are so many sweet and funny Christmas books. I created an Amazon store with all of the holiday books in our collection.
Some of these books are out of print, can be purchased from other sellers on Amazon. I found a source for every book and many are less than what I paid for them.
If you are reading this post from your email, please scroll down to the bottom and click over to the website. There the links will be live and you can go directly to Amazon.
CLASSIC CHRISTMAS BOOKS //
Because is it really Christmas without a reading of The Night Before Christmas? I don’t think so.
The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg – This is William’s favorite Christmas story. We added this book the year that we rode the Polar Express in Old Town Sacramento.
The Elf on the Shelf by Carol Aebersold – We are OG Elf-ers. We got our elf the first year that these little elves made their appearance and before they had clothes and pets and all of the Elf accoutrements. I remember going to 10 stores before I found our John elf.
The Night Before Christmas by Mary Engelbreit – There are so many versions of this story, but the illustrations in this one are my favorite. Mary Englebreit can do no wrong in my humble opinion.
The Nutcracker by Emma Helbrough – A sweet, shorter version of the famous ballet.
CLAY’S FAVORITE CHRISTMAS BOOKS //
These are the books that Clay gravitates towards when the books come out.
Clark the Shark Loves Christmas by Bruce Hale – This was given the year the shark obsession began. All of the Clark the Shark books are cute.
Howard B. Wigglebottom and the Power of Giving by Howard Binkow – A gentle reminder that Christmas is not just about getting presents, but also giving them.
How to Catch an Elf by Adam Wallace & Andy Ellerton – Clay was really into the mystery surrounding elves and how Santa does his business so this was a fitting book.
Frosty’s New Friends by Richard Cowdrey – Frosty makes new friends Snowpup and Snowboy. This was a good book to get ready for an upcoming move.
AVA’S FAVORITE CHRISTMAS BOOKS //
These are the books that Ava reads over and over and over again.
The Christmas Wish by Lori Every – The pictues in this book are incredible photographs. Anja wants to be one of Santa’s elves and this is her adventure to the North Pole.
Olive the Other Reindeer by Vivian Walsh – A dog that thinks that she is a reindeer. This is probably her all-time favorite Christmas story.
Snow Bunny’s Christmas Wish by Rebecca Harry – Snow Bunny realizes that she forgot to mail her letter to Santa so she decides to hand deliver it to him. She makes lots of friends on the way.
Christmas Farm by Mary Lyn Ray – This book is so sweet. Wilma and Parker, her 5-year-old neighbor, plant seedlings over the years they have a Christmas tree farm. They love and nurture these trees and so does their relationship. One of my favorite too.
WILLIAM’S FAVORITE CHRISTMAS BOOKS //
Will isn’t much of a reader, but when he does pick up a Christmas book, it is usually one of these.
An Otis Christmas by Loren Long – Will has always had a thing for tractors, and this book was right up his alley.
Off the Hook: A Christmas Ornament Adventure by John Arvai III – This book is so cute. Competing sides of ornaments on the tree have to find their missing star. The star is what tells Santa which houses to visit.
Inspector McSqueaks and the Santa Claus Clues by Scott Emmons – The age old question, how does Santa do it? This a great read aloud.
How Santa Got His Job by Stephen Krensky – Santa always knew his skill set, giving gifts, but he like most grown ups, did a few less than fitting jobs before he landed his dream job.
MY FAVORITE CHRISTMAS BOOKS //
Over and Under the Snow by Kate Messner – I love this book about winter animals. It is a science book that illustrates what is happening above and below the snow. The illustrations are wonderful.
When Santa Lost his Ho! Ho! Ho! by Laura Rader – The Santa that visits my house typically loses her ho, ho, ho, before the main event. In this delightful tale, Santa loses his belly laugh and the children of the world help him get it back.
When Santa Was A Baby by Linda Bailey – Santa’s parents know that he isn’t like the other babies. An adorable story about what Santa was like before he was really Santa.
Secrets of Winter by Carron Brown & Georgina Tee – I love this book so much. As you are reading, you shine a light through the pages and you see a scene under the scene. I guess I really love books about winter, and Clay loves any science book. We have more in the series too.
FAVORITE CHRISTMAS BOOKS FOR OLDER KIDS //
The Christmassaurus by Tom Fletcher – Ava has already re-read this book this season. We love Tom’s YouTube channel and his books are always so good. She loves The Creakers too.
Christmas Around the World by Lesley Sims – This has come in handy as we are celebrating new holiday traditions in Europe. Also a good resource for the inevitable Christmas Around the Globe projects.
The Naughty List by Michael Fry – This book is laugh out loud funny and reminiscent of Big Nate books.
Laugh Out Loud Christmas Jokes for Kids by Rob Elliott – We brought this book to Christmas dinner and there are some very clever jokes in it. Kids never not like a joke book.
The Christmas Story: The Brick Bible for Kids by Brendan Powell Smith – Minifigures reenacting the nativity. It’s obviously going to be a winner.
To see our entire Christmas book collection.
If you have any books that you love or that I missed, leave a comment and let me know. I’m always looking to add to the collection.
GIFT GUIDES FOR TWEENS AND TEENS //
Have some tweens and teens you need to shop for?
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