Open Before Christmas – A Holiday (Picture Book) Giveaway

When I was a little girl, Christmas was a time of glorious anticipation:.  I counted down the days; I loved opening the tiny doors of my advent calendar; I baked cookies with my mother; and when it got really close Christmas, my nana came to visit and she’d show me how to fold and tuck lengths of ribbon into beautiful bows to place on the presents.  The only thing that was hard was watching packages arrive by mail each day and disappear into the depths of my parents’ closet by night.

My other grandfather who couldn’t often be with us for Christmas had the perfect fix for a small person’s pre-Christmas lack of patience.  He’d always send one box marked with the magic words:  OPEN BEFORE CHRISTMAS. Inside would be something special to help get ready for the holiday.  Sometimes it was an ornament to hang on the tree.  Some years it was a set of cookie cutters or an apron to use while baking Christmas cookies.  And of course, sometimes it was a Christmas book.

This year, I can help you make the wait until Christmas a little more bearable.  I have a new copy of Olive, the Other Reindeer ready to go out on an early sleigh.  Call it a practice run for Rudolph.  (Oh, who are we kidding, I’ll be using the US Postal service, and for that reason can only open this giveaway to residents of the US and Canada, and while this giveaway is open until 12 midnight on Saturday night EST, and I will be mailing out the package on Monday I can make no guarantees about when the book will get to you.  See aforementioned USPS.)

So how can you win a little holiday cheer?  Leave a comment here, telling me your favorite Christmas (or winter) story.  I’ll use a random number generator to pick the winner.  Just make sure you leave some way for me to contact you!  The winner will be announced Sunday, December 12th!

For those unfamiliar with Olive, she is a dog, who has listened to Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer on the radio one too many times and develops an identity crisis.  She firmly believes she’s hearing them sing “Olive, the other reindeer” and therefore hightails it to the North Pole.  Our Olive isn’t the brightest creature, but she’s certainly well-intentioned.  She heads out with Santa and the reindeer and of course, they run into a few predicaments that can only be solved by a reindeer that’s really a dog (sticks that need chewing, things that need fetching, sniffing her way home in the fog).

Sex, Nudity, Dating – None.
Profanity – None.
Death, Violence and Gore – None.
Drugs, Alcohol and Smoking – None.
Frightening or Intense Things – None.

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8 Responses to Open Before Christmas – A Holiday (Picture Book) Giveaway

  1. stellacarolyn says:

    I don’t know if I have a favorite Christmas or winter story. Nope, just went back and looked at my goodreads and no, I don’t have one. Maybe Olive could be the start of a new tradition.

  2. Pingback: Open Before Christmas – A Holiday (Picture Book) Giveaway | altdotlife: Build your own village

  3. Alto2 says:

    My all-time favorite is The Mitten by Jan Brett. This simple folk tale of different animals piling into a child’s mitten for warmth really captured my imagination at a young age. The illustrations are beautiful, and the story is well-told. The age range on amazon says 4-8, but I recall reading it far past the upper end of that age range and still love it as an adult!

  4. Alison says:

    The story in my family is that the Christmas when I was nearly 2, I had “the Night Before Christmas” memorized (or close to…) and various aunts and uncles and grandparents would encourage me to recite it at every opportunity. I still have a soft spot for this old poem with the beautiful descriptive language (“as dry leaves that before a wild hurricane fly, when they meet with an obstacle mount to the sky”), and my 2-year old seems to like it too, though he in no way has it memorized! I bet he would like Olive, too – will need to check it out if I don’t win it here :D

  5. Meaghan says:

    I can’t recall a favourite Christmas story, although I have a lot of favourite Christmas movies! Many of my favourite childhood chapter books included Christmas though. Right now I’m thinking of the Little House on the Prairie series. I think that every book must include at least one Christmas.

    However, I’m sure my little one would love a copy of Olive the Other Reindeer!

  6. I just learned that I know “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas” by heart. I started reciting it and to my surprise got all the way to the end with just a few stumbles. I think my favorite might be Bear Snores On by Karma Wilson, which is winter but not Christmas. But then, I haven’t yet read Bear Stays Up, which is about waiting for Santa Claus.

    I also have an anthology with an excerpt from Little House on the Prairie about getting an orange, a piece of peppermint candy, a penny, and your own tin cup for Christmas, and my husband and I often look at each other and say, “Who could ever imagine such a Christmas?”

  7. Linden says:

    Our favorite Christmas story is currently “Rudolph The Red-Nosed Reindeer”, mainly because our two-year-old loves it and bursts into song every time we read it. There’s nothing like a toddler rendition of the Rudolph song to put everyone in the Christmas Spirit!

  8. Mrs. N says:

    stellacarolyn I will have to introduce you to MY favorite Christmas story if you don’t have one then.

    Alto2 First off, that was totally the voice part I sang in regional chorus. Second of all, The Mitten is so adorable. I also really like the hat. Who knew that animals and knitwear were such an engaging combination.

    Alison My family would have me read the Night Before Christmas every year. There’s a video of it from one year where it’s kind of fabulous because my nose was itchy and I was trying to tell someone to get me a tissue without ruining the video/reading to tell them, so there’s lots of nose-related pantomime in addition to the christmasy description.

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