On the Children's Shelf Throwback: Halloween Reading Traditions

I tend to go overboard decorating for holidays. I love seeing my children’s excitement when I drag those giant boxes of decorations out. We reminisce as we see decorations they made years ago, smile at all of our favorites and feel a sense of connection that comes through tradition. Included in those boxes of decorations are favorite holiday books.
I pack all our favorite holiday books away with the decorations so I can easily find them for each holiday. I carefully wrap them up in Ziploc bags to protect them. My children are so excited when we reach into the boxes and pull out favorite books we haven’t see in a almost a year. Even when the books are for the littlest readers, we still all happily sit around and read through all of them again.
The Halloween book collection is one of my favorites. It includes "Happy Halloween, Curious George" by N.T. Raymond and Kelly Loughman, "Say Boo!" by Lynda Graham-Barber, "Spot’s Halloween" by Eric Hill, and "Ghost Gets Dressed!" by Janee Trasler. It also includes a book from my childhood: "It’s The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown" by Charles M. Schultz. While I love the yearly television showing of "It’s The Great Pumpkin," the book, as always, is even better. From the original price on it of $1.29 to the memories of reading it every year at Halloween as a child, I consider this book priceless. I love when I pull this book out of the decorations box and get to read it once again, only now my children are enjoying it as much as I do.
For the older readers in our house, I include "Selected Writings of Washing Irving." This beautiful book from 1945 is a great October/November read. Of course, I also include a copy of Washington Irving’s "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow." Growing up in New York, The Legend has always been one of my favorite stories, and I love looking at this book every October. This year, I found a children’s copy of "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow" and am adding it to our Halloween book collection as well (once my daughter finishes reading it).
In a few weeks, I will share the books in our Thanksgiving and Christmas decoration boxes. I can’t wait to visit those books when we begin unpacking the next round of decorations.
Do you pack books with your holiday decorations? If so, which ones?
Photo by Jessica Collins
This piece originally ran October 2014
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