Works For Me, The Christmas Edition

This week Shannon at Rocks in My Dryer is doing a holiday theme for Works For Me.

One of the fun things we during the month of December is a nightly gift-opening. Sound extreme? Not really.

You see, over the years we have gathered a wonderful collection of Christmas story books of all types. A couple of our favorites are The Christmas Tree That Grew (fanciful and fun) and Room for a Little One (stunningly lovely).

One year I dug through every bookshelf in our house and found every single Christmas book we own. I was amazed to discover we had nearly 3 dozen Christmas books. I decided our collection needed more attention than it was getting. That November I took an hour or so and gift-wrapped each book individually.

I filled a big basket with the brightly wrapped packages, and put it in the corner of the living room. Every night during December, the younger children take turns picking and unwrapping one book, which is then read by dad along with the usual bedtime stories. We have fun trying to guess which book we might end up with that night, and the youngest kids are thrilled to get to open a package.

This simple tradition has been a lot of fun for our family.

Works for me!


  1. What a sweet idea.

  2. Wow this is a great idea Mary. I’ll have to go book-hunting and see if what I can find around here. Thanks for sharing it.

  3. Terrific idea… I have two little girls so I think we may have a new tradition this year. Thanks so much for the idea.

  4. That is a great idea! I have just bought Munchkin her first proper Christmas book. Looking forward to seeing the collection grow and putting this idea in to practice!

  5. What a lovely idea!

  6. How fun! Thank you- I think we’ll be trying that this year!!!!!! now, to clean out the book shelves and locate all Christmas books!!!!

  7. LOVE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I’m totally going to do this.

  8. Sounds awesome!

  9. Great idea! My oldest just pulled out one of our many Christmas books this morning wanting ot read it! I don’t think I have 3 dozen, but I may be able to come close! Thanks for sharing!

  10. I love that idea, definetly going to implement it.

  11. That is the most wonderful idea!! I think we might do that as well! Thanks for sharing!!

  12. What a great idea!!! I was an elementary teacher in my former life :0) so I have a TON of Christmas books too – I think we’re going to have to start this tradition with NewDotBaby! If you don’t have “The Crippled Lamb,” by Max Lucado, it’s a gorgeously illustrated one worth adding to your collection.

  13. That’s a fabulous idea! Thanks for sharing!

  14. That is such a great idea! I love it! Thanks for the idea, Mary.

  15. I absolutely LOVE it!

  16. That sounds like so much fun!

  17. this is an awesome idea!

  18. How sweet…we do books as an advent calendar of sorts too!
    I never thought of wrapping them! That would really add to the excitement!


  19. This is a great idea!

    I also discovered we had tons of Christmas books and decided to pack them away instead of leaving them out all year. We bring them out with the Christmas decorations, and they’re like brand new again.

    It’s amazing how long those little batteries in sing-a-long books can last when they’re only played with a month per year. (We’ve had one book for ten years now, and it still plays music!)

  20. How exciting for them! A great, simple idea.

  21. What a fun idea!! I love it!

  22. Wow! A surprise book each night! How fun and what an ecomonical way to hype up reading and what you already have! I am going to have to do this in my classroom!

    By the way do you have THe Christmas Miracle of Johnathan Toomy? It is a wonderful story of how the Christmas story transformed a lonely mans life.

  23. I love this idea.. I am definately doing it. Don’t know if I have that many books..Time to search!

    Thanks for sharing!

  24. Love it!

  25. That is a great idea!

  26. Oh, I am SO doing that this year!

  27. We do the same thing. We call it Advent Book Reading. The kids love unwrapping the books. We have done it so long that they try to guess by the size and thickness of the books which story it is. There is one particularly shaped book that they tend to look for each year.
    Thanks for sharing!

  28. Great idea, I think it’s going to take us a few years to amass that many Christmas books.

  29. As everyone else has already said – Great idea! I love it!

  30. Very sweet idea, I love it! Thanks for sharing =)

  31. What a wonderful tradition! I love reading Christmas stories as well.

  32. thank you so much for sharing this idea!

  33. BTW thanks for the idea

  34. That is a great idea! My favorite tradition for our family is our Jesus Stocking. I have the sermon that David Niven is giving at the end of The Bishop’s Wife typed up and it goes in the stocking. There is a line that says something about everyone’s stockings being up except one for the Christ child.

    In there we write down the things we do for Christmas that are “for” Jesus: Operation Christmas Child boxes; Heifer Int’l; etc. The first thing we do on Christmas morning is pull that stuff out, read the little sermon and remind ourselves of the things that aren’t for us but for God. Then of course, we dive in to presents! 😉

  35. I LOVE this idea! I used to teach and have a million Christmas books. What a delightful idea! I know my kids will love it. Thanks for the great tip!

  36. This is great! Every year we unpack the Christmas books all at once and the kids spend the day going through them all. I like the idea of wrapping them up.