Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Holly and Ivy

"This is a story about wishing," starts the story of Holly & Ivy.  Indeed, this wonderful book written by Rumer Godden and illustrated by Barbara Cooney is all about wishing and dreams coming true.

Miss Nancy at The Storybook Shoppe recommended this beautiful book to our family.  We fell in love with the tale of Ivy, an orphan who wants a home for the holidays more than anything else, Holly, a doll who wants a girl to bring her to life, and a lonely, childless couple who wants a family.   It's a story about Christmastime, when all three wishes come true as one.

This is not a short picture book, it's actually quite long, and it is recommended for children ages 5+.  (Though I think it's better suited for an 8 or 9 year old.)  I sat down with Molly who is 4 years old to read it, but it was much too long for her, although she truly enjoyed the vignettes and whimsical pictures that tell the story wonderfully.  The illustrations in this book are nothing short of magical.  They are very realistic and captivating.  Molly loved the picture of Ivy drinking hot chocolate and every wintery scene that just feels like Christmas!

We have several copies of Holly & Ivy in store, and many available to ship directly to your door.  There's still time to have it by Christmas!  Save 10% OFF and have it delivered directly to your front door.  Check out with PayPal, it's really is the "safe and easy way to pay."

HOLLY AND IVY by Rumer Godden/Barbara Cooney
$16.91 (normally $17.99) plus $5 shipping and tax 

Wednesday, December 11, 2013

The Christmas Wish

The Christmas Wish

Here's a book that will instantly bring the magic of Christmas to your home: The Christmas Wish by Lori Evert (with eye-popping photographs by Per Breiehagen) captivated my daughter, Molly and me, too!  It's a story about a little girl, Anja, who lives "in a place so far north that the mothers never pack away the wool hats or mittens."  Anja's lifelong dream is to become one of Santa's Elves and the story is about her pursuit to find Santa across the frozen tundra.

Her journey is made possible by a friendly bird, a talkative horse, a shy but strong ox, a cuddly polar bear, and a thankful reindeer.  Each animal has it's own persona and each is incredibly endearing.   Hard to say if we liked when Anja read to the polar bear the most...

Or if it was it was when they arrived early to meet a friend, and decided to take a nap together...

Or if we liked it when the horse gave her a ride because Anja was tired...

When Anja finally gets to the North Pole, her wish of meeting Santa Claus comes true! Santa Claus thanks her for making the long journey and tells her she is an extraordinary girl that brings kindness and joy to those around her all year long.  Then he asks if she will drive the sleigh!  This breath taking picture nearly convinces me of Santa....

When they arrive, Santa hands her a bell and tells her that if she ever needs anything, she should ring it.  A moment later, Anja awakes in her bed without any sleigh tracks or Santa, but she is holding a bell.   Readers are left wondering if it was all a dream.

My daughter absolutely loved this question, and it's an excellent transition into the topic of "is Santa Claus real?" I asked her if she believed the story was true and if Anja really made that incredible journey with all of those wonderful animals.

She had a wide smile after a moment and said - "MOM! It has to be true because the little girl was holding the bell!" Bravo, Molly!  This is a wonderful story about believing in the magic of Christmas.  We will treasure this story and it's spectacular, spectacular photographs for seasons to come. (Per Briehagen was a photographer for National Geographic, the photos are real.)

Buy The Christmas Wish now, right here on our blog and support The Storybook Shoppe! You will save 10% OFF the list price and pay only $5 shipping right to your door.  PayPal is a safe and easy way to pay... click on the BUY IT NOW BUTTON below! This one makes a great gift for the holidays.

The Christmas Wish

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

Christmas Is Here

Every year, Christmas gets more and more commercialized and I feel more and more that Christmas has become completely out of hand.  This year, we are instituting a few rules in the O'Regan household.  For every gift that comes in, we will donate one toy that we don't play with anymore.  I also hope to volunteer at Savannah Feed The Hungry with my daughter.  Since my husband thinks it would be too difficult, I may just go alone.

This Christmas book, "Christmas Is Here" was recommended to our family by Miss Nancy at The Storybook Shoppe.  Words are from the King James Bible and it's a very grounding book. The words are comforting, rhythmic, biblical.  A warm feeling came over me (and hopefully Molly and Connor) as I read, "Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will towards men."

I hope that after the Cyber Week sales and the mad dash rush at the mall, everyone will enjoy a moment (or more!) this season and be thankful for all that we have.  I love the "pay it forward" ideas found all over the country... picking up the coffee for the person behind you, paying the persons toll behind you, donating toys and books, or volunteering.  Giving back this year can be just as rewarding as getting gifts and scoring a great deal.

This book brings us back to what Christmas is all about.  We love the illustrations and the "story" of Christmas and I think your little ones will too.  Buy this book right here on the blog and support The Storybook Shoppe.  Get 10% OFF your purchase and pay just $5.00 flat rate shipping.   PayPal is safe and secure and your book will arrive in a few days!