25 Readable Nights Before Christmas – Start a New Tradition!
Halloween is a sweet memory, with Thanksgiving scant weeks away, but there are people already bellowing on Sirius radio, “Where is the Christmas music?” The Hallmark series of holiday sentimental tales is ALREADY airing its broadcasts from years past.
Are we “rushing the season”, as my mom used to exclaim with dismay each year? The answer, unfortunately, is a huge YES!
The merchandising culture of bigger, better, newer and “don’t miss out” is a 24/7 clamor that hits not only our ears, but those of our children as well. They are not immune from it, unless we try, with small, but important diversions, to make them aware of what has lasting value, not only at this time of year, but in life in general.
And that would be the sharing of timeless traditions, both old and new, where families gather to be together to share time, and create memories.
Trust me, these are the moments, years from now, that your children will remember, and yes, even sustain them, if I may be so bold.
And in that vein, may I suggest a new tradition of the “25 Readable Nights Before Christmas?”
Yes, it will take some time and effort on your part, because you know better than anyone that life today is lived at a fast forward pace, which is all the more reason to put “a halt to the gallop,” as a dear friend of mine, Sister Trinity, a Franciscan nun, used to remind me often.
Today, it is more essential than ever to carve out time, amid the hustle and bustle that envelops us on a daily basis, in the run-up to the holiday season, that has become the “new normal” for many families.
Please find some time to browse through a book store in the next month, or maybe even find a second hand book shop that many libraries now have. Ask your local book store, school or local librarian for additional suggestions. Pick out twenty-five picture books and wrap them.
I know, I know… it’s another task to tack on to days filled with adult to-do lists, car pooling to activities for kids, plus meal times on the run..
As we all know the anticipation built into the “waiting” for the eve of holidays is a big deal to children. But, this is one way to have them enjoy that anticipation, both productively and profoundly.
It will be worth it, as your young readers experience each of the “25 Readable Nights before Christmas”, when, come bedtime, your child selects and unwraps a book from the pile next to their bed and snuggles with you to read and RELAX. It says, unconsciously, both to you and them, that both TIME TOGETHER and BOOKS are important and valuable.
You are the best determinant of your young readers’ taste in books, but don’t be shy about straying into new territories of taste. They will learn and grow from the experience.
Years from now, they will be thumbing through a memory!
Here is a list of some Christmas suggestions and please add your own: