Several years ago, I saw on Pinterest the idea of reading a children’s Christmas book each week in December as a type of countdown to Christmas. I loved this idea, and I knew that I wanted to make this a part of our Christmas traditions.

I had a simple measure for my Christmas book countdown—I wanted all the books to be Christ-centered to help our family stay focused on the true meaning of the season. As with most children, my little ones had become very fixated on their very long Christmas lists, Santa Claus and candy canes.

Reading a book each week was an easy way to recenter and reconnect with the true Christmas spirit and teach them about the birth of Jesus. Below are some books to consider reading this year with your little ones to start this new Christmas tradition in your family.

Mark 10:15-16 says, “‘Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.’ And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them and blessed them.” Merry Christmas!

A Birthday Party for Jesus
By Susan Jones

This book is a heartwarming reminder to children that Christmas isn’t about Santa or asking for presents; it’s about celebrating Jesus’ birthday. It tells the story of forest animals preparing for a big and exciting event. Somewhere in the forest, one special animal knows the true meaning of Christmas and is celebrating Jesus and wants to share it with the rest of his forest friends.

God Gave Us Christmas
By Lisa Tawn Bergren

As Little Cub and her family prepare to celebrate the most special day of the year, the curious young polar bear begins to wonder, “Who invented Christmas?” Mama Bear and Little Cub head off on a polar expedition to find God and to see how He gave them Christmas. Through Mama’s gentle guidance, Little Cub learns about the very first Christmas and discovers that Jesus is the best present of all.

The Pine Tree Parable
By Liz Curtis Higgs

The Pine Tree Parable tells the heartwarming tale of a farmer and his family who nurture tiny seedlings into fragrant Christmas trees. When the trees are tall enough to offer to their neighbors, the farmer’s wife plans to keep the most beautiful pine tree for her family—until one snowy December night when a child teaches her the true meaning of Christmas.

Mortimer’s Christmas Manger
By Karma Wilson

Mortimer is tired of his dark, small home. He finds a manger scene in the family’s living room and proceeds to rearrange the nativity characters and makes the manger his new bed. However, each day, the nativity is reset. He finally sees one of the humans reading the Christmas story and realizes that he cannot use the little bed because it belongs to baby Jesus. So, he prays to Jesus to provide him a new home.

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Kelly Wise Valdes
Kelly Wise Valdes has been writing for the Osprey Observer since 2008. She graduated in 1989 from Florida Southern College with a B.S. in Communications and enjoys writing and traveling. She currently resides in northern Hillsborough County with her husband, David. When not traveling and writing, Kelly and her husband enjoy spending time with their five grown children (as well as their grandchildren) that still keep them very busy.