Most of us are familiar with the classic, "The Night before Christmas" by Clement Clarke Moore.
Now, your typical non-obsessive person probably feels that any copy of the classic is as good as the rest of them. But not this 24-year-old woman yearning for a piece of her childhood Christmas!
For years, I have had a foggy image in my head, drawn by memory of a specific illustrated edition of this book. Unfortunately, after hours of searching on websites and archives and numerous annoying phone calls to family members begging for detailed descriptions, I have been unable to find it.
I have chalked up this unusual book-hunt of mine to the importance of family traditions. And there is no better time to celebrate family traditions than during the holidays. These are the experiences that can turn into the most meaningful of memories.
For me, that nostalgic memory is of a book, but it's not just the book; it's the pretty cursive font, the cold shade of blue in the snowy sky on the cover, the playful illustrations of the dancing sugar plum fairies, and the peaceful sound of my father's reading voice.
Simply put, books can be the key to your child's sense of magic this holiday season. And the library is here to help provide a great selection of holiday titles to help you and yours create meaningful traditions.
"The Polar Express" by Chris Van Allsburg, "The Mitten" by Jan Brett, "Hershel and the Hanukkah Goblins" by Eric A. Kimmel, "The Snowy Day" by Ezra Jack Keats and "The Best Christmas Pageant Ever" by Barbara Robertson are just a few family favorites that are available for checkout in the Youth Room.
So when you go about your busy holiday season this year, make sure you add "family traditions" to your checklist. Who knows? Maybe the library has the exact copy of the book from your own childhood that you've been searching for. Give us a call to find out, 814-946-0417, ext. 123.
Adrienne Brown is the Children's Services Supervisor at the Altoona Area Public Library. She lives in Hollidaysburg with her husband, Christopher, and their two dogs.