This year, at age two and a half, Baby Lighty is super clued up about Christmas for one so young! This is the first year where he understands the idea of Father Christmas, he can point out a Christmas tree, a polar bear or an elf at ten paces, and is really interested in the whole event. He quite often role plays that he is the big man in red, wearing his Father Christmas hat and dishing out presents with the help of his trusty push along dog (which is 30-something years old and used to belong to Mrs Lighty, and who I assume is meant to be one of his reindeer!). It’s been lovely to see his curiosity surrounding this special event, and as such, I decided to pique this curiosity by creating a Book Advent.
There are many wonderful Advent calendar ideas around at the moment; I love the refillable wooden and fabric ones that you can buy in the shops (I’ll even stick my neck out and say that I’d like to have a go at making Baby Lighty a fabric one one year, although judging by my attempt at Christmas stockings, this may not be wise!!), and there are even ones filled with such wonderful things as gin and Prosecco for us grown ups, I understand! I also love the idea of a reverse advent calendar, whereby you give something back to those in need (Abi from Something About Baby has a great post on that idea here), although I’m not sure that Baby Lighty would understand the concept of that this year.
So what is a Book Advent, and why create one this Christmas?
Well, it’s basically 24 books which are read each night in the 24 days of Advent. I’ve heard how successful it was last year for one of my lovely NCT friends, and I also loved this post by Sophie Ella and Me. You can either wrap them (although let’s face it, this is more effort on top of what is already expected at Christmas!) or just leave them unwrapped. Similarly, you can number them or not. I’ve gone for wrapped and numbered, purely because it’s a bit of a learning aid in terms of number recognition, as well as something fun for Baby Lighty, too.
I’ve been hunting for Christmas books suitable for a two and half year old over the past couple of months. I think it’s perfect this Christmas, as he’s got the general gist of the celebration and we’ll be learning about the festivity at our Church-based baby group, and I hope that the bedtime stories will just help to build the excitement and understanding over the coming weeks. I’m super excited to see Baby Lighty’s reaction come December the first!
If you’re looking for some inspiration for your own Christmas advent calendar, take a look at the books I’m including below. Some of them are new books that I’ve bought specially, and some of them we already had in our collection.
Christmas Book Advent 2017:
- Snowy Bear and Friends – Roger Priddy
- The Christmas Selfie Contest – Rosie Greening
- Is it Nearly Christmas? – Stuart Lynch
- Puppy’s First Christmas – Steve Smallman and Alison Edgson
- “What’s a Christmas?” – Hayley Down
- My Visit to Santa at CenterParcs
- Little Bear’s Big Adventure – Julia Hubery
- Spot’s Christmas – Eric Hill
- Disney Christmas Storybook Collection – Various
- Santa’s 12 Days of Christmas – Alexandra Robinson
- The Christmas Show – Rebecca Patterson
- I am the Snowman – North Parade Publishing
- 10 Christmas Wishes – Claire Freedman
- When Granny Saved Christmas – Julia Hubery and Caroline Pedler
- Play Hide and Seek with Little Reindeer – Igloo Books Ltd.
- Mog’s Christmas Calamity – Judith Kerr
- Christmas Stories – Luana Rinaldo
- Santa’s Little Helpers – Dawn Machell
- Christmas Peek-a-Boo!
- The Little Lost Robin – Elizabeth Baguley and Tina Macnaughton
- The Best Christmas Present Ever! – Ben Mantle
- Santa’s Sleigh is on its way to Essex – Eric James
- The Very Smiley Snowman – Jack Tickle
- Santa’s Noisy House – Sebastian Braun
We also have a fuzzy felt book for Christmas Eve, called ‘Fuzzy Christmas’ by Kate Thompson. This one will go in Baby Lighty’s Christmas Eve box, as it’s more of an activity book. I’m hoping that over the years, we’ll be able to swap out the younger books for books suitable for older children. I can’t wait to see his little face when he’s presented with 24 books to open! He’s definitely one lucky Lighty this Christmas, and Mr Lighty and I will be able to share in the joy through his bedtime reading.