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There is always a flurry (ha ha) of excitement when we bring out the holiday books: for book lovers returning to our favorite holiday books is one of the great traditions of the season. Christmas and Hanukkah books can be anything from inspired to insipid. Many Christmas books retell classic stories–The Night Before Christmas, Twelve […]

December 5th, 2012
polar express inside1

The Polar Express 1985

The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg As Yolanda has written in previous posts, Christmas is a time for wishes and a time for memories: The Polar Express perfectly captures both. A young boy lies awake on Christmas Eve wishing for the sound of sleigh bells, but instead hears the sound of a train. He […]

December 26th, 2011
christmas memory inside1

A Christmas Memory 1956, 1989

A Christmas Memory by Truman Capote As much as Christmas is about wishing, for grown-ups, it is also about memories. During the holidays, we recall days gone by filled with special meaning – sometimes poignant, sometimes joyous, and sometimes downright sorrowful. My memories of Christmas include believing in Santa Claus (and other mythical beings), spending […]

December 21st, 2011

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever 1972

The Best Christmas Pageant Ever by Barbara Robinson I’m a big fan of creating family traditions and Christmas is a great time for that. We’ve imported a load from my English childhood and my husband’s Welsh childhood, as well as creating our own for our American-born children. Food is important: My contribution is getting my […]

December 14th, 2011
story of holly and ivy cover

The Story of Holly and Ivy 1957, 1985

The Story of Holly and Ivy by Rumer Godden Christmas is about wishing – wishing for a special gift, wishing for snow, and, in the case of Holly and Ivy, wishing for something that is missing. Ivy, a tough little orphan, is wishing for a home. Holly, a beautiful but shy Christmas doll, is wishing […]

December 12th, 2011