For the last day of our Advent of Christmas books, we have been enjoying quite a varied selection. The list of stories we wanted to read, and activities we planned to do, was so long that of course we haven’t got to the end of it, but we’ve had a good try.
Monkey and Rabbit have been trying out the Star Paws Animal Dress-Up Christmas Sticker Book which was sent to us by the lovely people at Macmillan. They both liked it, and had fun dressing up the animals in silly Christmas outfits.
Early in the evening Tiddler and I had a lovely quiet time together singing along to Twinkle Twinkle Little Star, A Lullaby Book with Lights and Music, and then I read Thomas’s Christmas Party to him.
And later on I read to Owl. We started with Clement C. Moore’s “The Night Before Christmas”, from The Christmas Book, compiled by James Reeves.
He then read by himself for a while. He had been asking about the story of Scrooge, so I found him a copy of Dickens’ Christmas Books and he made a start on A Christmas Carol. After a while, I took over and read a bit more to him. He is enjoying it and was even laughing out loud in places. I’m looking forward to reading the rest of it with him, though I think he might finish it before I get the chance.
We have enjoyed our Advent of Christmas books, and I think it will become a family tradition. There are so many books and poems I want to share with the children, and twenty-four days just wasn’t enough. But Christmas isn’t over yet, so I’m sure we’ll be reading some more over the next twelve days. If nothing else, we must read this one – it should have been this evening, but we ran out of time.
The Oxen, by Thomas Hardy
Christmas Eve, and twelve of the clock.
‘Now they are all on their knees,’
An elder said as we sat in a flock
By the embers in hearthside ease.
We pictured the meek mild creatures where
They dwelt in their strawy pen,
Nor did it occur to one of us there
To doubt they were kneeling then.
So fair a fancy few would weave
In these years! Yet, I feel,
If someone said on Christmas Eve,
‘Come; see the oxen kneel
‘In the lonely barton by yonder coomb
Our childhood used to know,’
I should go with him in the gloom,
Hoping it might be so.