Monday, April 3, 2017

B is for “Books in Stockings”

Welcome to the Blogging from A to Z Challenge. Every day in April (except Sundays), I’ll be sharing a short bookish memory with you.

I didn’t love reading as a kid, but I always got books for Christmas. They were usually in my stocking along with an obscene amount of candy. I didn’t know it at the time, but some really important books showed up in my stocking: Bridge to Terabithia, Hatchet, When Zachary Beaver Came to Town, Holes, Walk Two Moons, Island of the Blue Dolphins, The Summer of the Monkeys, The Golden Compass, Around the World in 80 Days, and many others.

Recently, I asked my dad how he—I mean, how Santa Claus—chose which books to put in our Christmas stocking every year. Neither of my parents are readers, so I wondered how they’d picked books for us kids. My dad said he didn’t remember. He didn’t even remember which books they’d given us.

I remember. Most of my Christmas books were classics or winners of major literary awards. I have a feeling my parents went to the children’s section of a bookstore and chose whichever books were sitting on the shelves with the covers facing out. If you’re searching a store for popular books, that’s a pretty good strategy for finding them.

I'm not sure how my parents chose books for me, but I’m very grateful they did. If I ever have kids, they’re getting books and candy in their Christmas stockings.

Some of my original stocking books.




Did you get books for the holidays when you were a kid?






36 comments:

  1. I don't specifically remember getting books for Christmas, but I'm sure I did. I always got a lot during the year. I've been buying my niece and nephews lots of books, though! They all get them for Christmas and birthdays.

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    1. Books are the best gifts. I hope your niece and nephews grow up to be readers.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  2. Santa Claus was amazing for you, I don't think I started getting books until just recently (and those are from my husband because I give him a list). I think I'll do that for my future children though!

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    1. Santa Claus was amazing. We always got a ton of stuff for Christmas.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  3. I love that!!! I never got books that I remember. I was a reader but never got books on holidays. I do get my kids books for holidays - easter basket, for christmas and whenever else I can.

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    1. Awesome! I hope your kids like their books.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  4. When I was maybe 7 or 8, my dad's company had someone dress as Santa and give a gift to each employee's kid. I was the only one who asked for a book: Shel Silverstein's Where the Sidewalk Ends. I remember sitting down right in the middle of the Christmas party to read it and all my dad's friends commenting (positively, of course) on it.

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    1. I love Where the Sidewalk Ends. I remember my teacher reading it to us in first or second grade.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  5. I don't remember getting books for Christmas but that could be because my parents wanted me to interact with the family over the vacation not hide in a book. I don't remember not loving books and think they are a great idea for stuffing a stocking.

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    1. Lol, it would be torture to give a kid a gift and then expect them to interact with family.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  6. One of my older brothers always gave me books. He really liked researching and trying to find a good fit. I have him to thank for getting me hooked on Madeleine L'Engle's Wrinkle in Time series.

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    1. It’s great that he put so much thought into what to get you!

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  7. I usually asked for books or gift cards for the book store at Christmas time. I would provide a list of titles to help out because my parents weren’t readers either. I always gave books at Christmas as well; I hoped that I could make a reader out of everyone if I could just find that right book to draw them in. Now, that I am a mom I give my boys books at Christmas too and I make a point to read them with them (my boys are still very young). Wonderful post!

    Shari

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    1. I love that you give your boys books. Hopefully they’ll become readers!

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  8. I can't tell you how many times I read Bridge to Terabithia, hoping and hoping that the ending would be different.

    Yet it never was.

    Great choices for A to Z!

    B is About Build-Up
    Isa-Lee Wolf

    A Bit 2 Read
    @IsaLeeWolf

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    1. Me too! I was devastated the first time I read that book.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  9. I always got books for Christmas and birthdays. I can remember my friends laughing because at my birthday party one year someone gave me a book and I curled up in the corner to read it while the rest of the festivities went on around me.

    I love giving books as gifts as well, especially when I've found one which has spoken to me in some way and I feel like I need to share it with people.

    Cait @ Click's Clan

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    1. Lol, if someone gave me a book at a party right now, I’d probably sit in a corner and read it. I’m not a party person.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  10. WOW! LOVE ALL THE BOOKS. Good post, have an AMAZING DAY!
    -Jared

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  11. My family gave books for Christmas and birthdays often, but not in our stockings. It was always so fun to see what they'd picked for me!

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    1. I liked seeing what my parents picked for me, too. They chose some really good books.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  12. I only remember a few books as a kid--all but one was about baseball and baseball players. The one that wasn't was a book about stamps. Later, when in grad school, I'd ask for books for the next semester and sometimes be surprised with one.

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    1. I had the same idea in grad school! My parents gave me gift cards, and I bought books off my assigned reading list.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  13. I did get books as a kid but often I'd get gift certificates too, so I could go buy my own. Those were the best!

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  14. That honestly sounds like the PERFECT Christmas gift of ever. Nothing is better than books and chocolates/candies. 😍😍

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    1. Books and candy go together very well . . .

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  15. I definitely got books for Christmas. We always had tons of book, and I spent most of my days in the Flatbush branch of the Brooklyn Public Library. What a lovely memory! Thank you for sharing.
    Sam @ WLABB

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    1. I spent a lot of time in the library as a preteen. I was desperate to find a horror book in the YA section that was actually scary.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  16. My gran was religious so she gave me bible works or CS Lewis books, my mum's cousin would buy classics for me that she read as a kid like Cold Comfort Farm (none of which I read!), my parents bought the books I really wanted to read like Enid Blyton and Roald Dahl every time we went shopping! When I stared secondary my mum would buy me a book each month from a local bookshop-I was in my Sweet Valley High obsession by that point! Books were always a big part of my childhood...Great post again!

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    1. My grandma got me books, too. They were usually about horses or wolves because I had an obsession with those animals as a kid.

      Aj @ Read All The Things!

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  17. That is awesome, AJ! I remember picking books out from those Scholastic flyers from school but I don't remember ever getting books as a gift for the holidays. My kids just got candy in their stockings.

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  18. That is so sweet. I gave my daughter books for Easter and as a last day of school treat.

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  19. It's so sweet that they were still willing to go to the bookstore and tried to make the best choice for you guys - even though it happened to be the most popular ones. I have to say that we also got books as a child, but I think my older sister did a lot of guidance when it came to my parents choices....

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  20. I give my kids books for every holiday of ever, so I'm glad you appreciate it. :-)

    Nicole @ Feed Your Fiction Addiction

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