Holiday Book Countdown to Christmas


While putting away the Halloween decorations, I came across a stack of wrapped “packages” in the basement. I suddenly remembered what I made the kids do before putting away all of the Christmas decorations last year. I made them wrap books.


We tried this five years ago and here is what I posted back in 2011:

“A lot of families have recently had a guest move into their home since Thanksgiving has come and gone…the Elf on the Shelf.  Well, bah-humbug at our house.  We do not succumb to the Elf because I do not need more to do this month!  Very cute idea, but (in my opinion) a lot of work for the parents if you do-it-up like I would.  So for now, no Elf.

However, I did like the Pinterest idea I found about unwrapping a holiday book each day in December.  Not a brand new book, but one you already had.  And what you might not know is that I cannot stand to read children’s books out of season.  For real.  Halloween book in January?  No way.  It was always torture for me to read a Santa book during the summer to the kids I watched while in college.  Truly pained me.  Odd, I know.

So each season I put the kids’ themed books away with other decor.  Which keeps them new and exciting every time they return the next season.  And we get lots of books as gifts.  So I dug into my holiday/kids’ bin and counted the books…perfect amount.  So then I spent an hour in front of the TV and wrapped up about 25-30 books.  All different shapes and sizes.

Last night I introduced the basket to the girls with the “rules”.  The books would only be unwrapped and read on nights of good behavior.  So last night bath time and the entire get-ready-for-bed process went pretty smoothly!  To kick it off each of them picked one book, but we’ll probably switch between 1-2 books depending on their behavior and the length of the book chosen.  I LOVE that it will keep me from reading the same Princess holiday book over and over each night this month.”

Below are some pictures of our own book basket 5 years ago. It worked awesome that first year and then the second year Charlotte got into the basket and unwrapped them all one day. So I never did it again. Ha! Then the kids were bored over Christmas break last year after Christmas had actually came and went. So they wrapped books. And we will try this countdown again this year. It will be even better since all three kids can read! And all three kids have reading homework! So they can focus on these books the next few weeks once Thanksgiving is over.


So if you have a stack of holiday books around the house, some wrapping paper and bored kids over Thanksgiving break, try it out. It would even make a cute holiday gift to give another family. However, you may want to secretly mark easier vs. longer books in some way so that parents aren’t stuck reading the LONGEST BOOK EVER on a night they are trying to get the kids to bed the quickest.

Do you have a special way to countdown to Christmas?


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