Saturday, November 28, 2015

Saint Nicholas & the Nine Gold Coins

Saint Nicholas & the Nine Gold Coins by Jim Forest

The figure of Saint Nicholas stands apart from nearly every other Christian saint: his fame spread across empires and generations to make him one of the most recognizable Christian saints in history. But the popular perception of Saint Nicholas today diverges greatly from his original veneration as a compassionate almsgiver and defender of the poor. Saint Nicholas has been reduced to the pop culture figure of Santa Claus, a jolly old man who brings presents to good little boys and girls. This book reacquaints those boys and girls with the authentic Santa Claus Nicholas, a man who found greatness not simply in spreading "good cheer," but in being a true icon of Jesus Christ in word and deed.

The feast of St. Nicholas is coming up on December 6th, a week from tomorrow! I already shared the list of new Christmas books our children will be receiving this year and you can find lists of our additional St. Nicholas theme books in my Advent & Christmas Book Collection, in my post of Christmas Gift Ideas, or in our December Book Basket (which I still need to update for this year). 

I mentioned that I included another new book in our 2015 Advent Book Basket and wanted to share a few more pictures with you all, since Amazon doesn't provide the "look inside" feature on this beautiful new release.

Saint Nicholas & the Nine Gold Coins, an Eastern Orthodox "retelling of the legend of Saint Nicholas illustrated in exquisite iconographic style", is still temporarily out of stock, but they are saying they will have it back in stock on December 1st (there should still be enough time to get it for his feast day with prime shipping!!!) and the price has dropped 14% from the full MSRP of $20 down to $17.28, PLUS right now you can save an additional $5.18 (30% off one book, up to $10 and one time use so make it count!) with coupon code HOLIDAY30 (good through 11/30/15) which would bring it down to only $12.10.

Here is a little peek inside our copy for those who would like a closer look...

but of course he told his wife, who felt it necessary to tell her brother, who told his best friend, who whispered it to his next-door neighbor, who mentioned it to her husband. Each person who knew the secret thought of one other person who could be trusted not to tell. Before many days passed, everyone in Patara knew what Nick had done.

At last the story reached his uncle's ears. I'm so proud of you, Nick," the bishop told his nephew, "and I know your parent's would be too. You cared more about your neighbor than yourself." 

(This page made me laugh, and will present a great opportunity to talk to the kids about how easily "secrets" and rumors can spread, especially in small communities.)

It is a beautiful and inspiring book. I'm looking forward to unwrapping and reading it on the feast of St. Nicholas this year!

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Bargain Priced Books :: Puffin in Bloom Collection

The Puffin in Bloom Collection

A collection of classics with stunning cover art by renowned stationery brand Rifle Paper Co.'s principal artist, Anna Bond, now available as an exquisite gift set! Featuring all four Puffin in Bloom classics with illustrated covers by Anna Bond in a charming keepsake box designed in her signature style.
(Note: All links to Amazon are affiliate links.)

Right now Amazon is offering The Puffin in Bloom Collection at a 40% discount, PLUS right now you can save an additional $10 (30% off one book, up to $10) with coupon code HOLIDAY30! I've been keeping an eye on this set, hoping to get it for my girls, and this is the lowest price I've seen it listed. I think I'm going to order it to include in one of my daughter's Stacks of Books this upcoming Christmas.

Sean and I were at Barnes & Noble one night last week and I happened to see the brand new addition to The Puffin in Bloom Collection commemorating the 150th anniversary of Alice's Adventures in Wonderland this month!

Alice's Adventures in Wonderland is larger than the other Puffin in Bloom titles, and filled with lovely illustrations! However, after seeing the $30 price tag, I placed it back on the shelf. (It was too expensive, even with my Barnes & Noble Educator Discount.) With the 50% discount that Amazon is offering (up from 40% yesterday!) I am reconsidering it for this Christmas.

You can find additional books for girls here: 

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Cinnamon Roll Turkeys

Last Thanksgiving we started the morning with a yummy brunch, including Pillsbury's Cinnamon Roll Turkeys!  I doubled the recipe to make 10 cinnamon rolls for our family.  My kiddos 'gobbled' them up! I am planning on making them again this year, perhaps using Trader Joe's Pumpkin Rolls instead.

Cinnamon Roll Turkeys

  • 1 can (17.5 oz) Pillsbury Grands! refrigerated cinnamon rolls with icing
  • 10 slices bacon - We used TURKEY bacon! ;) 
  • 5 candy corns (Update: we use these now for a food coloring and corn syrup free option)
  • 5 red mini candy-coated chocolate candies (we used Little Secrets for food coloring free here)
  • 10 candy eyeballs
  • 15 mini pretzel sticks, cut in half


Heat oven to 350 F. Line cookie sheet with cooking parchment paper.

Set icing aside. Separate dough into 5 rolls; place about 3 inches apart on cookie sheet. Unroll each roll about 1 inch; tuck dough into roll to create neck of turkey.

Bake 20 minutes or until light golden brown. Remove from cookie sheet to cooling rack; cool 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook bacon until crisp; drain on paper towel-lined plate. Cut bacon slices in half. Tuck 4 halves of bacon into back of each cinnamon roll so they stick up and look like tail feathers.

Drizzle tops of rolls with icing. Decorate turkeys with candy eyeballs, candy corn and candy-coated chocolate candies. Before serving, place halved pretzel sticks underneath each turkey to resemble turkey’s feet.

Let the kids have fun decorating their turkeys with extra sprinkles and candy corn. Look for the candy eyeballs in craft stores near the candy/cake decorating section.

Turkey themed veggie or fruit platters provide a healthy and creative Thanksgiving appetizer for children which are always quickly ‘gobbled’ up too! I hope you all have a very Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 23, 2015

Christmas Gift Ideas {Plus a Sleighful of Giveaways}

Around this time of year the questions start pouring into my inbox from other mothers who are looking for gift ideas and book suggestions. I always enjoy sharing about my "fun finds" each Advent and our ever growing book collection as we begin to prepare for Christmas!

Earlier this year I put together a list with 100+ Easter Basket Stuffers & Catholic Gift Ideas {Plus a Basketful of Giveaways!} and I thought I would do the same for Christmas! I decided to gather some of our favorite gifts from over the years into one (ginormous!) post. Almost everything listed below are things we have either purchased for our family or have been given over the years, with some new additions for this year and a few things on my "wish list."

Before I get started, could I ask you all for a little favor? Last Monday my mom received the results from her recent MRI. They found a 1.4 cm Acoustic Neuroma tumor. It is a rare benign (non-canerous) growth that develops on the eighth cranial nerve, leading from the inner ear to the brain. Her doctor has recommended that she travel to San Francisco or Portland sometime soon to have it removed. She is looking into her options now. Could you please offer a prayer for her? Thank you! 

Be sure to scroll all the way to the bottom to enter the giveaway for a chance to win one of 31 PRIZES, from my generous sponsors here at Shower of Roses, with a combined value of over $1,200!

Note:  Links to Amazon are affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

.: Advent - Preparing for Christmas :.

  1. Advent Candle Set (makes one set) - Here is another option we have used in the past, 'Make Your Own' Beeswax Advent Taper Candle Kit, which makes 3 complete sets.
  2. The Jesse Box (I've blogged a little about this here.)
  3. Kurt Adler Wooden Nativity Advent Calendar with 24 Magnetic Figures
  4. Mauve Pearl St. Andrew Chaplet from Mary Devotions
  5. Music for Advent Including: Advent at EphesusAdventus (Tracks 1-5 for the First Week of Advent), and Legends of Nicholas.
  6. St. Andrew Christmas Novena Bracelet in Bronze from Loreto Rosaries (on my wish list)
  7. Rustic Wooden Jesse Tree Ornaments from Jesse Tree Treasures (We use these beautiful ornaments in addition to our Felt Jesse Tree. You can find my No-Sew Picture Tutorial here.)
  8. Nativity Fabric Advent Calendar
  9. 100% Beeswax Advent Taper Candles (Our candles from The Cloister Shoppe have sold out for this year. Other options include: Toadily Handmade Beeswax Candles, Honey Candles, or these from Big Dipper Wax Works.   I'll be using these pillar candles in pink and purple for our large wreath. If you are looking for less expensive candles, these might be a good option.

.: Saints of Advent - Jolly Old Saint Nicholas:.

  1. Saint Nicholas Statue
  2. Saint Nicholas Gold Coin Soaps from Saintly Soaps
  3. Saint Nicholas from Shining Light Dolls 
  4. PLAYMOBIL Christmas Parade Set (or the St. Nicholas and Christmas Angel Play Set)
  5. Saint Nicholas by Naturally Catholic 
  6. St. Nicholas from Tiny Saints
  7. St. Nick Goat's Milk Soap
  8. DIY: St. Nicholas Chocolate Coins 
  9. Saint Blessing Blocks from Almond Rod Toys 

  1. The Baker's Dozen: A St. Nicholas Tale (I blogged about the book and our cookies here.)
  2. St. Nicholas: A Closer Look at Christmas (coffee table style book)
  3. The Legend of St. Nicholas by Demi
  4. The Legend of St. Nicholas by Anselm Grun
  5. Saint Nicholas & the Nine Gold Coins
  6. Nicholas of Myra: Giver of Many Gifts
  7. Saint Nicholas and the Mouse of Myra (comic book style)
  8. Kersti and Saint Nicholas by Hilda Van Stockum (chapter book, originally published in 1940)
  9. Nicholas: The Boy Who Became Santa DVD (also available from Catholic Child)

.: Saints of Advent - Santa Lucia :.

  1. Hand Painted Wooden Saint Lucy from Catholic Folk Toys (custom orders available - Tammy's hand painted saint dolls were the very first I ever saw online many years ago and inspired me to paint my Alphabet of Saints - I'm so happy that she is painting again! I love her dolls!)
  2. Lucia Saint of Light
  3. St. Lucy from Naturally Catholic
  4. Saint Lucy from Tiny Saints
  5. Saint Lucia Christmas Postcards from Audrey Eclectic
  6. Starboy Hat and Star Set
  7. Saint Lucy Articulated Paper Doll in Color from Stella Marigold Art
  8. Lucia Pewter Ornament
  9. Saint Lucia Dress & Wreath from The Little Habit

.: Saints of Advent - Our Lady of Guadalupe :.

  1. Our Lady of Guadalupe
  2. Cloak of Roses - Our Lady of Guadalupe from Regina Martryum Productions
  3. Our Lady of Guadalupe and Crown from The Little Habit
  4. Mañanitas CD or MP3 from Casa Maria/Sister Servants
  5. Our Lady of Guadalupe Puzzle
  6. Our Lady of Guadalupe from Prayer Pillowcases 
  7. Our Lady of Guadalupe from Shining Light Dolls 
  8. Juan Diego: Messenger of Guadalupe DVD
  9. Our Lady of Guadalupe Pop-Up Book - We also really love The Story of Our Lady of Guadalupe, Empress of the Americas

.: Christmas Picture Books :.

  1. Christmas Mosaic (read more about Christmas Mosaic and find the featured book list here)
  2. Bambinelli Sunday
  3. Bethlehem (Catholic Edition)
  4. Mary's Song
  5. The Miracle of St. Nicholas
  6. Katy's Christmas Gift (peek inside the book here)
  7. Manger (peek inside the book here)
  8. Song of the Stars
  9. The Nativity

.: Christmas Board Books :.

  1. Who Is Coming To Our House?
  2. Stable in Bethlehem: A Countdown to Christmas
  3. One Night In Bethlehem (A Touch-And-Feel Book)
  4. Who's Hiding? A Christmas Lift-The-Flap Book
  5. The Saving Name of God the Son
  6. Christmas in the Manger
  7. My First Pictures of Christmas (you can also find the new Christmas! by same author here.)
  8. Little Blue Truck's Christmas
  9. God Bless Our Christmas

You can find our complete collection of Advent & Christmas Booksthe links to all of our book lists, and the list of books our children will receive this year in the archives.

.: Christmas Jigsaw Puzzles :.

These are some of the puzzles our family has worked on in the past, plus a couple new ones for this year. I was also considering this 500 piece First Prayers Puzzle for my younger children.
  1. Heaven on Earth Jigsaw Puzzle (1,000 pieces) 
  2. Stained Glass Jigsaw Puzzle (500 pieces) 
  3. Stained Glass Window Jigsaw Puzzle (1,000 pieces) - similar to this one in the archives.
  4. Stained Glass Nativity Jigsaw Puzzle (1,000 pieces)
  5. Holy Family Jigsaw Puzzle (1,000 pieces)
  6. Stained Glass Holy Night Jigsaw Puzzle (1,000 pieces) - new for this year! 
  7. Glorious Nativity Jigsaw Puzzle (1,000 pieces) - more pictures in the archives
  8. Forest Nativity Shaped Jigsaw Puzzle (1,000 pieces) - new for this year!
  9. "A Christmas Angel" Jigsaw Puzzle (1,000 pieces) 

    .: Nativity Sets for Children :.

    These are some of the nativity sets our family has collected over the years. 
    1. Little People Nativity 
    2. Nativity Puzzle by Flipzels (a new gift for our soon-to-be four year old!) 
    3. Playmobil Nativity (we have an older style)
    4. Wooden Nativity Blocks from Almond Rod Toys
    5. A Child Is Born from Naturally Catholic (new for this year! So beautiful!) 
    6. Hand Painted Wood Peg Doll Nativity from Make the Scene
    7. Kurt Adler 10.5-Inch Hand-Carved Child's 1st Nativity Set
    8. Schleich Nativity (No longer made, but worth searching ebay.) 
    9. Wooden Nativity Scene from Armadillo Dreams (Pictured in the archives: Roses for Baby Jesus)

    .: The Holy Family and More Saint Dolls :.

    We don't own all of these, just Bud's favorite Saints 'N Stitches doll in the last picture, but numbers one, three, and seven are going to arrive sometime next month! 
    1. Saint Joseph from Shining Light Dolls 
    2. Mary & Joseph Journey to Bethlehem from In the Loft
    3. Mary, Blessed Mother from Tiny Saints (SAVE 20% with coupon code ROSES20) 
    4. Holy Family Soft Saint Doll Set from Trendzilly
    5. Holy Family Set - Zelie Dolls from Family Cloister Learning Center
    6. Nativity Soft Dolls from Baby Steps to Jesus
    7. Saint Michael the Archangel from Baby Steps to Jesus
    8. Saint Therese Felt Saint Doll from Sanctus Stitches (I love the Saint Lucia too!)
    9. Saints 'N Stitches Pillow Doll from Waltzing Matilda Makes… 

    .: Family Game Night :.

    1. Cathedral 
    2. St. Peter's Basilica 3D Puzzle
    3. Scattergories - Catholic Edition
    4. Catholic By The Number
    5. Saint Memory Game (You can also make your own Saint Joseph Memory Match Playing Cards with Printables in the Archives!)
    6. Lord of History Card Game
    7. Church Windows
    8. 'Tis the Season, Christmas Trivia (A friend gave us this last year and we enjoyed trying to answer all the questions!) 
    9. Catholic Trivia: Traditional Version

    I asked each person in our family to share one favorite. Here's the list: 
    1. Stratego Original
    2. Ticket to Ride (I'm considering ordering the Nordic version as a Christmas gift!) 
    3. The Settlers of Catan and Expansion Sets (See our Settlers of Catan Birthday Party here.)
    4. Axis & Allies 1942  
    5. Monopoly: The Classic Edition
    6. Say Anything
    7. Guess Who? (Patron Saints Edition!) 
    8. Bird Bingo 
    9. Bug Bingo 

    .: Christmas Activity and Coloring Books :.

    1. Christmas Coloring Book
    2. The Childhood of Jesus Coloring Book from Holy Heroes
    3. The Holy Imitation Series: Eucharistic AdorationLife of JesusMother of GodHoly Name of JesusChoirs of Angels, and Communion of Saints
    4. Crayon Rocks in a Red Velvet Bag
    5. Nativity Stained Glass Coloring Book
    6. Branch and Twig Colored Pencils
    7. Coloring Book About Christmas (available at Sacred Heart Books and Gifts
    8. Saints of Christmas Activity Book
    9. Nativity Sticker Activity Book

    .: Scapulars, Veils, Rosaries and More :.

    1. White Infinity Veil from Robin Nest Lane
    2. Embroidered Scapular from Mary Devotions
    3. Hand Embroidered/Sewn Scapulars and Medals from StellaMarigoldArt
    4. Miraculous Medal Necklace from Blessed Beans Boutique
    5. Crocheted Wool Rosary Roses from The Fig and Thimble
    6. Ave Maria Crown Earrings from Gail's Designs
    7. Madonna and Child Tapestry Rosary Pouch or Nativity of Jesus Rosary Pouch(many additional designs available including: Sacred Heart with Immaculate HeartCrucifixion, and more) 
    8. Infant of Prague Rosary from Loreto Rosaries
    9. Sheet Music Beaded Bracelet from Art Angel Gallery

    .: Christmas Decorations and More :.

    1. Enesco Pillars Advent Wreath 5-piece Set
    2. Heritage Lace Silent Night Runner (or Silent Night Table Cover and Mantle Scarf)
    3. Joseph's Studio by Roman Holy Family Triptych Figurine
    4. 18" Madonna and Child Statue 
    5. Infant Jesus in Manger (still looking for the link - I purchased from Catholic Child) 
    6. Christmas in Harvard Square
    7. Oplatki Wafers (I blogged more about these here.) 
    8. Nativity Ornaments including this Holy Family with Baby Jesus
    9. Nativity Set Cookie Cutters (or from Catholic Child!)

    .: Favorite Gifts for Little Catholics :.

    1. Baptism Set from Our Father's House (pictures of my son using his set here)
    2. White Vestment Set from Interior Castle Goods
    3. Miniature Mass Kit from Our Father's House
    4. Monk Rag Doll: Brother Hubert from Jacob's Toy Box and Books
    5. Wooden Mass Kit from Almond Rod Toys
    6. Priest Rag Doll: Father Martin with Vestments from Jacob's Toy Box and Books
    7. Saint Francis of Assisi from Shining Light Dolls
    8. Child Size Priest Vestments from Jacob's Toy Box and Books
    9. Hand Painted Wooden Saints from Catholic Folk Toys

    1. Saint Therese the Little Flower Costume from Our Coats of Many Colors (Princess costumes are great gifts too. This is one of my girls favorites!) 
    2. Subscription to St. Mary's Messenger
    3. Saint Habits and Accessories from The Little Habit
    4. Immaculate Heart and Sacred Heart Cross Stitch Patterns
    5. Saints 'N Stitches Embroidery Kits from Waltzing Matilda Makes… (LOVE these! One of my daughters also has the Klutz Tiny Stitches book, which I've seen them referencing lately when practicing their embroidery.  I think I might get Doodle Stitching for them this year, along with some new embroidery kits and some sewing supplies.) 
    6. Nativity Silhouette Cross Stitch Pattern
    7. I haven't ordered this St. Therese Doll doll or seen it in person, but it might be a great alternative to other 18" dolls!
    8. Marian Grotto Craft Kits from Catholic Child
    9. Zelie Dolls (these are so beautiful, but they do need to be ordered in advance)

    .: Favorite Toys for Little Boys and Girls :.

    In addition to our collection of Lincoln Logs, Playmobil, Thomas Wooden Railway, and LEGO, here are some more favorite toys that I would buy again... 
    1. Schleich Portable Barn with Accessories with Schleich Animals
    2. Wheely Bug Cow, Small and Large
    3. Castle Block Set
    4. Leather Swords and Shields from Made by Alejandro
    5. Melissa & Doug Deluxe Folding Medieval Castle
    6. Wooden Shield and Sword from Frost Lane
    7. Tug Bowl Kid's Dinner Set (not exactly a toy, but definitely a favorite!) 
    8. Tree Finger Puppet (and our whole collection of Folkmanis puppets!) 
    9. Large Elements Set (I blogged more about these here.) 

    1. Tree Trunk Fairy Home
    2. Children's Tin Tea Set and Retro Pink Play Kitchen (not pictured, we have an older version)
    3. Calico Critters 
    4. Melissa & Doug Fold & Go Wooden Doll House
    5. Melissa & Doug Castle and Castle Furniture
    6. Wooden Doll Stroller from Nova Natural
    7. Play Silks in a Variety of Colors
    8. Corolle Babicorolle Dolls (we also LOVE these Pink and Red Kathe Kruse Dolls
    9. Grimm's "Little Flower" Wooden Puzzle Stacker

    .: A Few of our Teens Favorites :.

    According to my 15 and 13 year old sons, these are some of their favorites... 
    1. Perplexus Original and Epic
    2. Deluxe Hockey Goal Set
    3. LEGO Architecture Sets including Trevi Fountain
    4. The Art of the Hobbit, Letters From Father Christmas, A Dictionary of Tolkien (I've ordered Frodo's Journey to give one of them this Christmas.)
    5. Metal Earth Model Sets (Note: These are challenging to assemble. My 13 year old loves them, but our 15 year old isn't a fan.) 
    6. The Brotherband Chronicles and Ranger's Apprentice Books (including the new release: The Tournament at Gorlan (Ranger's Apprentice: The Early Years)
    7. LEGO Creator Sets including Mountain Hut
    8. Risk (We have the Lord of the Rings Middle Earth Conquest Edition
    9. Bose QuietComfort 25 Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones and Bose Mini BlueTooth Speaker (The boys love the prizes they won from the 2015 NPLTW Contest! The earphones have been so great for our oldest son, who has auditory processing challenges and listens to lots audio books. They were the perfect prize for him!) 

    Saturday, November 21, 2015

    New Christmas Books for the Feast of St. Nicholas

    Every year on December 6th, the feast of St. Nicholas, our children wake up to find new slippers (or sometimes as new pair of shoes for winter) filled with treats and chocolate gold coins (last year the bags from Trader Joe's worked perfectly so I picked up seven more bags last week), along with a new Christmas picture book to add to our ever growing collection.

    This year, while I was creating the labels for our Advent Book Basket, I made some little Saint Nicholas labels as well. You can download them from my Dropbox (Black Text or Green Text) if you'd like to use them too.

    Here is the list of books my husband and I choose to give our children this year, in addition to Saint Nicholas & the Nine Gold Coins which is in this year's Advent Book Basket:

    For Captain:

    'Round Christmastime, things are a little different on the Emerald Isle. Instead of logs thrown onto the fire, we find turf blazing bright. Instead of cold eggnog spiced just right, the mother and father are enjoying their stout. You'll find no Donner or Cupid or Blitzen, but Ould Neddy the donkey and his small cart. Father Christmas with his Irish eyes twinkling ushers in his seven elves, and thus begins the wondrous Irish Night Before Christmas. This humorous tale, in the same vein as the famous Cajun Night Before Christmas, is the Irish version of Father Christmas's yearly visit. Told in delightful brogue, it will have everyone wishing "Nollaig sona agut!'' (Merry Christmas to you!)

    The Angelus chimed
    While into their beds
    Climbed eleven "T'ank Gods" 
    to rest wee sleepy heads. 

    *"T'ank Gods" - children

    I know that our all-things-Irish loving oldest son will get a kick out of this book! I found myself laughing as well.  ;)

    For Ranger: 

    “Mark Vogl has given us much more than a parody of the classic Christmas poem. He has infused his version with the spirit of the Confederate soldier, who gladly makes yet another sacrifice for the good of his country. Stephanie Ford’s illustrations are stunning in their authenticity and beauty.” —Charles H. Hayes, author of Civil War Limericks"

    For Twinkle Toes: 

    "It is Christmas Eve. An abandoned gray cat shivers alone in the cold, snowy forest. Not far away in a warm and cozy farmhouse, Jason anxiously asks his brother Nate if Santa Claus will be able to come in such bad weather. But soon the bitter wind stops howling and the sound of sleigh bells rings clearly through the woods. Neither the cat nor the boys know it, but a small Christmas miracle is about to occur.... Tasha Tudor's radiant illustrations illuminate this story, perfectly expressing the loving spirit that shines through the simple text. Efner Tudor Holmes skillfully combines down-to-earth reality with just a hint of seasonal magic."

    For Chiquita:

    "Originally published over twenty years ago, and out of print since 1998, Sleeping Bear Press is proud to bring this beloved Christmas tale to a whole new audience. Moving and nostalgic, and brought to life by glowing watercolor paintings, it reveals the joy of a very special present and the love that a father and daughter share."

    For Snuggles: 

    "It's Christmas Eve 722, and Kristoph, a young orphan boy, is accompanying the missionary priest Boniface through the German countryside. They are hurrying to reach the next village by nightfall when they come upon a group of people in the forest worshiping an oak tree and preparing to sacrifice the son of the village chieftain. To prove that the oak is powerless and that there is only One True God, Boniface miraculously fells the giant tree with a single ax stroke. In its place stands an evergreen. Calling it "the tree of the Christ Child," he instructs the men to mend their lives and take the tree home where it will shelter "loving gifts and lights of kindness." Now rescued, the son of the village chieftain invites Boniface and Kristoph to share Christmas with his family ...around another evergreen that Kristoph cuts down for their own celebration."

    For Rose: 

    "An old owl tells the Christmas story to the community of birds as he has done so many times before, but when he tells of the special message from the Baby Jesus, a little bird questions why they no longer sing the message. “People no longer listen,” is the sad realization. The birds decide to share the message once more, but this time to the children of the world. And what unfolds is surely a Christmas wonder."

    The book ends with the message:
    "Let there be peace.
    Peace on Earth!"

    Originally I had planned to give her Katy's Christmas Gift, until I realized we already had it under the old title of  The Christmas Bird.  I don't like this one as much, but it's a simple, sweet story that any little bird lovers will enjoy.  Bird Bingo is a favorite game around here, so I think my little ones will especially enjoy the illustrations of all the different birds in this book.

    For Bud: 

    "It's the most wonderful time of the year! Little Blue Truck is spreading cheer by delivering Christmas trees to his animal friends. Can you help count each green tree from one to five and back again? Don’t forget to save one for Blue! Beep! Beep!

    With the gentle rhythm and signature illustration style that made Little Blue Truck a household name, Blue's new adventure is full of holiday warmth. Sturdy cardstock pages, a compact and child-friendly text, and flashing colored Christmas lights on the final page come together in a novelty gift book that’s sure to be the favorite treat of the season."

    With a forester for a daddy, I think our little Bud with love this new addition to his Little Blue Truck collection.

    .: Giveaway :. 

    This year I have a copy of the hardcover edition of The Twelve Days of Christmas to give away to one of my visitors!

    Please enter the giveaway using the Rafflecopter box below:

    a Rafflecopter giveaway

    For additional Christmas book suggestions you can find some of our lists in the archives: