The Polar Express is a given, as is The Night Before Christmas, but I couldn't find a picture of my favorite Night Before Christmas version. I like the one that Jessi and I read when we were growing up. I think it had been my mother's when she was little. The pictures were classic. Thomas has a HUGE Night Before Christmas book that we read so many times when he was a baby that now every page is held together with tape. It is well-loved.
Night Tree is one of my all-time favorites. Instead of describing it I'll just suggest you read it for yourself. Unfortunately we don't own it, but it's a feel-good Christmas book, and it's another that Jessi and I used to like to read. In fact I bought it for Jessi once as a gift, and she read it to me on Christmas Eve every year after. We decided early that we would spend every Christmas Eve together, forever, no matter how old we grew or how we changed, and she would always read the stories to me. It was tradition, after all. Of course we now live too far apart for that to work out, but the memories are priceless, and I would never take back those promises, because now I like to think that we both reminisce about the same things every year at this time.
The Mitten and Trouble With Trolls are two Jan Brett classics. The Mitten is just fun. -A little girl drops a mitten, and while she's playing a whole bunch of animals all squeeze inside and stretch it out. I like the secondary story told by pictures in the border of Trouble With Trolls.
Obviously, I can't forget The Christmas Story. Thomas has the version shown. It is a hand-me-down, and we love it. There's something about those sweet little Holly Baby faces that is just perfect for babies and toddlers. Thomas still loves the book.
Last but certainly not least is the newest of the books listed. That's Bear Stays Up for Christmas. We like to read Bear Snores On and Bear Stays Up for Christmas together. There is something about the simple rhymes and jolly spirit of both books that is warming and enjoyable to read aloud.
I'm sure I've forgotten some, but I think anyone who enjoys children's books (I collected them before Thomas was around) should read each of these.
That's it for tonight! Sweet dreams!