We've started pulling our favorite Christmas books off the shelves for family reading. Tonight at bedtime we read B is for Bethlehem, a book we first found when the sweet girl was just an infant.
I loved this book from the first time I laid eyes on it. The beautiful, vibrant colors of the illustrations, reminiscent somehow of folk art or patchwork quilts, work in lovely tandem with the rhyming couplets that take you through the alphabet and through the nativity story.
And I love the book for the memories I have of reading it over and over to S. when she was a baby and a toddler. Several of the pages glisten with tape because we couldn't bear to take it away from her determined baby grip and some of the pages ripped. She loved looking at it, long before she could have been fully conscious of what it was about. And we loved that her little eyes (and heart, we hoped!) were already drinking in the glorious news of Jesus' birth.
It was fun tonight to read through it together and hear her new observations. She realized that, even though it was an alphabet book, giving you words that represented each letter, it was also going through the story. She loved how it talked about light (it mentions that "R" is for radiance): "that's neat," she said, "because God is Light, and Jesus is God's Son."