Saturday, November 26, 2011

Preparing for Advent :: Book Baskets

Our picture books are all wrapped, despite running out of the dark purple paper and having to finish up with light purple rather than making another trip to the store!  There is one wrapped for each day of Advent, with the remaining books placed in additional baskets.    I also filled a couple baskets with all of our remaining Christmas Books, and I don't think I will be needing to check any more out from the library this year... We have plenty to keep us busy all of Advent and Christmas!

Just like I have done in the past (here are our lists from 2008 and 2010, or you can scroll through all our Christmas Picture Books here), I thought I would share our list of books for this year.  I will be back soon with the new books I choose for the feast of St. Nicholas, and pictures from another new favorite we will be surprising the kids with in a couple weeks.

November 27 ~ Waiting for Noel: An Advent Story

November 28 ~ An Early American Christmas

November 29 ~ The Christmas Cobwebs

November 30 ~ Waiting for Christmas: A Story about the Advent Calendar

December 1 ~ Cobweb Christmas: The Tradition of Tinsel

December 2 ~ The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey with CD: Gift Edition

December 3 ~ The Little Fir Tree

December 4 ~ The Gift of the Christmas Cookie: Sharing the True Meaning of Jesus' Birth

December 5 ~ The Miracle of Saint Nicholas

December 6 (Feast of St. Nicholas) ~ A Gift from St. Nicholas

December 7 (Feast of St. Ambrose) ~ The Christmas Candle

December 8 (Feast of the Immaculate Conception) ~ Mary, Mother of Jesus

December 9 ~ Pablo's Christmas

December 10 (Feast of Our Lady of Loreto) ~ The Three Gifts of Christmas: Book with Audio CD

December 11 ~ An Orange for Frankie

December 12 (Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe) ~ Our Lady of Guadalupe

December 13 (Feast of St. Lucy) ~ Lucia, Saint of Light

December 14 ~ Hanna's Christmas

December 15 (Rose's Birthday) ~ The Legend of the Christmas Rose

December 16 ~ The Night of Las Posadas

December 17 ~ Night Tree

December 18 ~ The Clown of God

December 19 ~ Shoemaker Martin

December 20 ~ Mortimer's Christmas Manger

December 21 ~ Little Star

December 22 ~ The Donkey's Dream

December 23 ~ On Christmas Eve

December 24 (Christmas Eve) ~ The Night Before Christmas: Book & DVD

The following are wrapped in gold paper and will be placed in the empty basket on Christmas morning:

December 25 (Christmas Day) ~ Bethlehem

December 26 (Feast of St. Stephen) ~ Stephen's Feast

December 27 (Feast of St. John the Apostle) ~ Good King Wenceslas

December 28 (Feast of the Holy Innocents) ~ The Little Match Girl

December 29 ~ Saint Francis and the Christmas Donkey

December 30 ~ The Mitten 20th Anniversary Edition

December 31 ~ The Huron Carol

January 1 (Feast of the Circumcision) ~ All for the Newborn Baby

January 2 ~ Angela and the Baby Jesus

January 3 ~ The Stable Where Jesus Was Born

January 4 ~ The Last Straw

January 5 ~ The Story of the Three Wise Kings

January 6 (Feast of Epiphany) ~ We Three Kings

Our Additional Books for Advent and Christmas:

A Basket of Board Books for our Littlest Ones:

Note:  Quite a few of the books on our reading lists have study guides in either Christmas Mosaic, An Illustrated Book Study for Advent and Christmas or Catholic Mosaic: Living the Liturgical Year with Literature an Illustrated Book Study for Cathoilc Children, which we will be using as well!

Wishing you all a very Blessed Advent!


  1. Great work, Jessica! I've been working on my list too. I'm looking forward to incorporating this into our Advent & Christmas this year. Have a blessed week, Lori

  2. Hi Jessica!
    Thank you for sharing your list with us! We are just starting out on our journey with the kids and I find it very inspiring how much you incorporate books into your traditions. With a 2 year old, a 1 year old, and another due in May, I am hoping to start building these traditions in our home as well. Do you wrap the same books from your collection every year? If so, how do the older kids react if it's not a "new" book? Are they just surprised at the order with which they are revealed and excited to read an old favorite? It would be costly to buy 28+ new books every year.

    Thank you for your help!

  3. Yes! It would be very costly to buy all new books each year! I am finding it hard enough to continue our tradition of one new book each, since we started this when we just had a couple children, and now we have 7! Some years I have had to be very creative, due to a tight Christmas budget, but if you watch the sales you can find great deals on Christmas themed books throughout the year.

    My children know that the books that they unwrap aren't going to be "new" - but they are always so excited to unwrap it and see it again for the first time since last Christmas. They don't know which of the books they will be unwrapping, since I tend to vary the list each year, but they do have a good idea that on the feast of St. Nicholas it will be a book about him, and on the feast of St. Lucy it will be a St. Lucy or Lucia Day book, etc.

    An idea for the future: Usually the library lets you check out books for at least 3 weeks, so you could always check out books from the library to wrap, placing them in the first few weeks, and use your own books closer to Christmas. For many years we were checking out lots of books every Advent. Only these past year or so have I not needed to do that, since our collection has grown so much.

    I hope that helps... Have a very blessed first week of Advent!

  4. What a wonderful suggestion to use the library! Thank you for all your ideas and help!

  5. Oh, my goodness! Jessica, your "new favorite" is the same book I found at the Telluride bookstore on our anniversary getaway a few months back! I was so jazzed I even posted about it then, lol. It's awesome, isn't it? I'm so excited to add it to our Advent/Christmas basket and share it with my kids this year. :)

  6. Kelly ~ It is awesome! I pre-ordered it last year, and it didn't arrive until after the feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe, so I ended up saving it for this year. I've been dying to take it out of the closet to share with the kids ever since! They are going to love it!! :)

  7. I am the same way about finding new books--my Christmas book wishlist keeps growing! I will have to check out many of the titles you listed.


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