Really, to be perfectly honest, I could talk about books every day. But today I wanted to share with you a Christmas book that we’ve been reading quite a bit, because, you know … it’s Christmas! :)
The picture book When I Love You At Christmas, written by David Bedford and illustrated by Tamsin Ainslie, with its brief but charming text and adorable paintings is a delightful read for young children.
It’s a cute story narrated by a stuffed lamb telling us about how much he loves his little girl. He goes through all of the activities that the little girl engages in around Christmastime, such as when she is wrapping presents, baking cookies, writing out Christmas cards, acting in a nativity play, and getting excited about Christmas day.
The double-page spreads are decorated with bright watercolor artwork and the text itself if very simple, but also very sweet.
One of the aspects I love about the story is how the girl gets so excited about Christmas, but she’s always thinking of others. The book demonstrates things that are sharing activities, like wrapping presents, baking cookies, and sending out Christmas cards. Things that emphasize a spirit of love and giving.
Even though the girl has trouble sleeping on Christmas Eve because she’s anticipating the big day, and even though she rushes quickly to find her own presents on Christmas morning, she takes the time to share a present with her stuffed lamb, too.
The lyrical text is short enough to hold the attention of toddlers and preschoolers, the illustrations are detailed enough to give their eyes plenty to explore, and the underlying message is subtle but lovely.
My girls, who are about 2-1/2 and 4-1/2-years-old, love it … but so do I! This is definitely going to be a regular for us around Christmas, but is still worth a read throughout the rest of the year, too.
*Update: I know the picture says you can get the book from my Usborne site, but it has been discontinued. There are, however, sometimes copies available on Amazon.