In our house, we have a box full of picture books that comes out on the first Sunday in Advent, and I’m always on the lookout for new Christmas books.Tonight I read a new one to Peter. It’s a new edition of Pearl Buck’s short story “Christmas Day in the Morning,” with pictures by the Salt Lake City illustrator Mark Buehner. The plot is simple–a boy growing up on a farm decides to wake up early (3:00!) on Christmas Day and do the milking before his dad gets up to do it. The prose is spare and perfect, the exchanges between father and son tender, but never cloying.
I couldn’t get through it tonight, reading to my firstborn, who so wants to be good (even though he mostly forgets). He was very patient, waiting for me to collect myself every other paragraph, looking solemn when I went to fetch tissues. In another year or so, he’ll tease me for being such a sentimental old ninny, but tonight he was sweet and snuggly.
What about you? Any specially magic Christmas stories or traditions around reading Christmas books? Recommendations for our collection? (And yes, this is a shameless ploy to get a certain MMF to comment here!)