Christmas is just around the corner (yikes!) and what better gift for the young friends in your life than an excellent book? If children’s books are on your shopping list this year, you’ll love this roundup of my family’s favorite children’s books.
Before we get to the list, this seems like the perfect opportunity to share a poem that I absolutely adore. It’s by Alice Low, and appears in The Family Read-Aloud Christmas Treasury.
I’m not an aunt yet, [Update: Now I am!] but I am a mother, godmother and friend. I love to include a wonderful book with gifts for all occasions. Any occasion is a perfect occasion for a book! Baby showers, weddings, birthdays, Christmas, etc.
Since most kids I know aren’t thrilled with “just a book”, I often give a book and “something else”. I’m holding out hope that in time, the recipients of my literary gifts will come to treasure that part of the gift far more than the other “fun” part.
A Merry Literary Christmas
When Christmas shopping time
And I am faced with gifts to buy,
I think about one relative
Who always had one gift to give.
And every year her present came.
And every year it was the same.
While other gifts were round and fat,
(Their secrets hidden) hers was flat.
Rectangular, the corners square,
I knew exactly what was there.
I’d pass it by without a look—
My aunt had sent another book!
I’d only open it to write
A “thank you” that was too polite,
But every year when Christmas went
I’d read the book my aunt had sent,
And looking back, I realize
Each gift was treasure in disguise.
So now it’s time to write her here
A thank-you note that is sincere.
So—thanks for Alice and Sara Crewe,
For Christopher Robin and Piglet and Pooh,
For Little Nell and William Tell
And Peter and Wendy and Tinker Bell.
Thanks for Tom and Jim and Huck,
For Robinson Crusoe and Dab-Dab the duck,
For Meg and Jo and Johnny Crow
And Papa Geppeto’s Pinocchio
For Mary Poppins and Rat and Toad
King Arthur and Dorothy’s Yellow Brick Road,
For Kipling’s Kim and tales from Grimm,
And Ferdinand, Babar and Tiny Tim.
I loved them all, I’m glad I met them.
They’re with me still, I won’t forget them.
So I’ll give books on Christmas Day
Though I know what all my nieces say–
I know it from the way they write
A “thank-you” that is too polite.
A Book Makes a Great Gift
If you–like myself–enjoy gifting quality literature to the young friends in your life, you may appreciate the list below. As much as I love giving books as gifts, I also hate to waste my money on subpar titles. Especially when there are so very many excellent choices.
The following list contains every children’s book I’ve recommended to date here at Yankee Homestead. It is by no means an exhaustive list; in fact, it continues to grow and evolve here in our own home. But it’s a good place to start!
My Favorite Resource for Picking Great Children’s Books
First of all, let me recommend one of my favorite resources for selecting excellent children’s books. While it’s not the only “book about books” out there, it’s definitely at the top of my list.
If there are children living in your home, or if there is a young family you know and love, I highly recommend adding this book to your (or their) personal library. Read all about it here: Honey for a Child’s Heart: How to Choose the Best Children’s Books.
And if you love wonderful children’s literature, or could use a few suggestions in this area, be sure to follow my Pinterest board Favorite Children’s Books. (Original, I know.)
Yankee Homestead Favorite Children’s Books
- Favorite Picture Books for Fall (updated)
- More Favorite Books for Fall
- Favorite Thanksgiving Stories for Children
- Favorite Christmas Books for Children
- The Nutcracker for Kids
- Our Favorite Winter Poem (The More It Snows)
- Happy Winter: this year’s favorite winter book
- Favorite Winter Books for Children
- Favorite Valentine’s Day Books for Children
- Children’s Books for St. Patrick’s Day
- Favorite Children’s Books for Spring
- Favorite Children’s Books for Easter
- 11 Favorite Children’s Books about Seeds and Gardens
- More Delightful Children’s Books about Gardening
- 9 Favorite Children’s Books for Summer
- 3 More Favorite Children’s Books for Summer
- Our 4th of July Book Display
- Favorite Children’s Books about the Beach
- Goodnight, Sleep Tight: Favorite Bedtime Books
- Excellent Nature Biography for Kids
- On-the-go Nature Guides for Kids
- Exploring Nature With Kids: Take-Along Guides
- All Things Bright and Beautiful
- Recommended Butterfly Books
- Goodnight, Sleep Tight: Favorite Bedtime Books for Toddlers & Preschoolers
- Recommended Resource for Family Devotionals
- 10 Favorite Children’s Books