One of the things we do to count down the days to Christmas is to open a new Christmas book each day of Advent. These books are sometimes funny, sometimes of the “Christmas is a season of love” variety and sometimes more explicitly Christian. This isn’t the main way we observe Advent but it’s a fun extra that gives the boys something to look forward to every day. I’ve collected a lot of Christmas books I like over the past few years. Many were given to us by my Mom. Some I mooched from Book Mooch. And I get the rest from the library. I wrap up enough to have the kids be able to open one every day of Advent. We usually have other books that I keep on a shelf and will bring out as the month goes on.
Today’s book was The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey by Susan Wojciechowski. This is a beautiful book with gorgeous illustrations by P. J. Lynch. The story itself is somewhat sentimental, but the author writes so well that it’s never overly saccharine. Jonathan Toomey is a grumpy wood-carver who has withdrawn from society due to grief over the loss of his wife and baby boy. He is saved from his sadness by a friendship with a widow and her small son. I see his redemption and ultimate change is an allegory for how Christ works in all men.