Tuesday, December 15, 2015

reading under the Christmas tree

As soon as we pulled out the Christmas tree and lit it up for the first time, we all knew it was time:

Time for some Christmas stories under that beauty.

Yep, still one of my all-time favorite Christmas traditions.

Because I don't know about your neck of the woods, but things haven't been necessarily "peaceful and holy" around ours.  We've all had some sleep deprivation with all the holiday hoopla going on, which in turn always turns to stomping fits, wailing, door slamming (I've taught my kids well), arguments over the dumbest things, and silent tears over who-knows-what.

But it's like someone waves a magical wand over our whole house when we sit down and read a story under that luring glow.  

We don't do it every night, and these days we're lucky when we can get any more than just the two littles nestled in right there, but usually the big girls are close (doing homework or working on something or another), but the minute we start reading that Christmas spirit seeps into every nook and cranny all around us.

We've done the kids favorites so far ("The Grinch" and "Frosty") and a couple of my favorites too: ("The Gift of the Magi" and "The Three Trees"), and a few in between.

Sometimes the girls just sit and read without me:
...and will wait for a long time for me to join them if they need to...
...complete with socks in their hair :)

My favorite moment from last Saturday was coming out of the laundry room to find this:

I love this tradition with all my heart.

Some of my favorite books we've gathered over the years (and yours in the comments) are back HERE.

Happy reading!


  1. when my kids were babies I remember reading that you did this.. and we have done it too.. like yours it's sometimes just one kid now.. but I still have the books out.. it's do hard to gather everyone lol

  2. Please, please... Where did you get your leather chairs in some of these photos?

  3. What a precious moment captured on that video! Funny how those super sweet moments can more than make up for hours (days?) of grumpiness.

  4. What a sweet video! And what quick thinking to pull out your phone and capture it. I need to do more of that. Thanks for the inspiration!

  5. Love this tradition! At our house we pull out the Christmas books and put those under the tree until Christmas Eve and then we'll switch them out for presents. Until then, though, it's nice for my preschooler and toddler to get excited about our Christmas books under the tree. It's such a nice way to wind down after a long day. :)

  6. Shawni, I have been reading you for years. Thank you! I have spent way too much time searching the internet for a table like your large white round kitchen table. I can't find it. Please help.

    1. We had that table made because I could not find one big enough in the style I wanted. Found a really great local guy who did a great job. Sorry that's not a whole lot of help if you're not local but I bet you could find someone in your area who could help.

    2. Thank you for getting back to me! Having it made opens a lot of options, I will give that idea a try. Thank you!!

  7. Just FYI. Some brands of Segway have been recalled. One was mentioned in a post a bit ago.

  8. I love your book list! Such a great tradition. Have you ever listened to the Read-aloud-Revival podcasts? the last episode featured a mother who shared Christmas book ideas and it was a pretty fabulous list! Just in case you are looking to add more to your full box!

  9. Just love it! I found something awesome this week that you'll love to have! Coming next Christmas!


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