December is nearly upon us and that means it is almost time to start the real count down to Christmas. Many of you will have advent calendars ready to enjoy but I have a nice alternative count down for you in the shape of Fred Arthur’s latest book, Twenty Four Days to Christmas.
Poppy is in agony – it is the First of December and she has twenty-four days to wait until Christmas and she is convinced that she will not be able to contain her excitement and impatience: How can she possibly wait so long for Santa to arrive? Poppy’s parents put their heads together and come up with a cunning plan that has Poppy completing a different, Christmas themed activity every day, to keep Her busy until Christmas (and Santa) finally arrives. Twenty-Four Days to Christmas is an Advent Calendar of a book, which can be read one day at a time, or as a complete story, and centres on Christmas, family and the magic of the Christmas season.
This book is brilliant for getting the whole family in the festive mood. With its bright, fun illustrations mixed in with lots of rhyming, it is a picture book that is made for the family to read together in my opinion.Each day brings us different activities to take part it. From nativities and carol singing to writing letters to Santa and visiting Christmas fayres. You can see a fab list of suggestions from Fred Artthur below on Christmas family activities.
• Christmas morning walk, with new bike, scooter, roller skates etc,This is a great way to build up an appetite and meet people and share Christmas cheer.
• Opening stockings together as a family before breakfast to see what Santa has brought. A real family occasion and the best way to start Christmas (usually very early).
• Christmas games, Jenga, Uno, Trivial Pursuit, Outburst, card games. This is what family (and friends) time is about.
• Christmas baking – mince pies, sausage rolls, Christmas cake, Christmas pudding. I never sure how much cake or cookie mixture makes it into the oven.
• Carol Singing Singing our favourite carols by candlelight in the snow (usually followed by mulled wine and mince pies).
• Choosing the tree and decorating it. Always a great activity especially with a glass of mulled wine (Only after you have placed the star at the very top)!
• Going to the Christmas Pantomime. Who doesn’t like shouting ‘He’s Behind You!’?
• Midnight Mass. The start of Christmas Day with a candlelit service and the end of the Service is the first time you can say ‘Happy Christmas’ to your family and friends. (And as a child, staying up until Midnight is a real treat.)
The story goes through one day at a time and with each new suggestion brings new discussions to have with the kids. For example what presents are on their lists and what have their previous favourite gifts been, do they think they’ve been naughty or nice and what could they do to be better behaved.
Now you can of course read the story all in one go or you can read one day at a time to coincide with the real count down to Christmas as a sort of reading advent. However you decide to read it, it will definitely be a story to in-still more than a touch of festive spirit into you.
If you’d like to hear more about this fantastic book then keep following the blog tour for more tips, information and guest posts and you can of course get yourself a copy of the book from Amazon