I love seeing the holidays through the eyes of my children, and one of the things I enjoy most about the season is reading them stories that leave visions of sugar plums dancing in their heads. Simon & Schuster has a wide array of holiday-themed children’s books, and if storytime always puts you in the holiday spirit, I have three that you won’t want to miss.
Reindeer Christmas($16, hardcover) is warm and cozy throughout, in both prose and inillustrations. It tells the story of two children and theirgrandmother, who rescue a lost deer found in a nearby forest. Theyprovide him love and care until the night before Christmas Eve, when hetakes off into the sky. On Christmas morning, as the children opentheir presents, they receive a letter from Santa alerting them to thedeer’s true identity — Donner!
The classic Christmas carol ‘Deck the Halls’ has been around forhundreds of years, while the illustrations of Norman Rockwell areclassic Americana at its very best. The two are paired beautifully in aclassic-in-the-making, Simon & Schuster’s Deck the Halls($17, hardcover). You’ll sing ‘fa la la la la’ louder than you everhave before, as you and your children are treated to some of Rockwell’scheeriest, merriest artwork. At the end, the publisher provides youwith a guide to each painting, including when it was completed andwhere it first appeared. This book makes a great gift for the childwhose parents crave history and tradition, especially during theholiday season.
Last but certainly not least, our personal favorite — Where Did They Hide My Presents?($7, paperback) If your gang is big into sing-a-longs, than this is thebook for you. A series of "silly dilly" Christmas songs sung to thetune of their more popular counterparts, it’s guaranteed fun forparents and kids. The son ‘Batteries,’ for example, is modeledin tempo after ‘Silver Bells.’ Instead of the traditional lyrics,however, you’re encouraged to sing "Batteries, Batteries, All of ourgifts aren’t working. C’s and D’s, Father Please, Get hundreds oftriple-As." There’s lots of mom and dad humor in these songs that yourkids will be oblivious to, and that’s the most fun part of all.