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One of the traditions I started with my baby is picking out a themed book or two about each holiday and gifting them to her. She’s got a nice little collection of various celebrations now, including an impressive Halloween book selection. This year, since it’ll be her second Christmas, I am looking to add even more baby Christmas books to her stash, alongside other winter holiday titles. We aren’t religious, though we practice a mix of Christmas traditions and Jewish Hanukkah traditions because of our families, alongside several of our own making, including the traditional Texas tamales (and yes, even in my part of Illinois, you can buy tamales from the woman known in her former Mexican town for having the best ones and those are bought from her at her home, not in the grocery store). Reading baby Christmas books together is one way I hope to expose her to the traditions of some of her more devout peers and help her understand various cultural references.
This roundup of baby Christmas books focuses on board books that are perfect for those newborns to three year olds who love handling, tossing, and chewing what they’re reading. I believe books are for use, so every time my kid destroys a book because she’s been reading it so enthusiastically — and she is an intense reader — I feel like the book has more than done its job.
I’ve stuck primarily to baby Christmas books, including baby’s first Christmas and some personalized options, but I have added a few broader “winter” and winter holiday themed books, too, to offer a range of options. Because these are board books and many are developed inside publishing houses, as opposed to created by individual authors, it is challenging to know how diverse this list truly is. So I’m conscious of making sure the books themselves feature a range of illustrations, showcasing a range of families. It is a priority for me to get diverse books into my own kid’s hands, and despite the barriers to figuring out who has written or illustrated some of the titles, what’s not hard is perusing through the images to ensure they don’t represent a single type of person.
Most of these books are not part of a franchise, though a couple are part of a well-known series and/or by beloved authors.
The Best Baby Christmas Books (Plus Some Bonus Winter/Holiday Picks!)
This first Christmas book is not only a beautifully illustrated look at the holiday, but it doubles as a perfect gift, as there is space for an inscription in the back. Imagine how special this book will be as that baby grows up and can revisit the love from when it was given to them.
Another option for a baby’s first Christmas book is this one, packed with realistic photos of a wealth of the holiday’s most well-known images. The images have a tactile element to them, so while it’s not a touch-and-feel style book, there is still plenty for young readers to experience on a sensory level throughout.
For readers who love this book or want to expand beyond Christmas, there is also an excellent title in this series called Baby’s First Hanukkah.
This entry into the “Babies Love” series introduces the youngest readers to words related to Christmas, including star, gift, elves, and more. As a bonus, it’s a lift-the-flip book that keeps little hands engaged along the way.
Baby Loves Electrical Engineering on Christmas by Ruth Spiro, illustrated by Irene Chan
For a completely different spin on baby Christmas books comes this title in a series all about STEM. Little brains can learn about the science behind Christmas lights — it’s age appropriate and includes bright and illuminative illustrations.
Want another STEM-themed winter holiday book in this series? Check out Baby Loves Angular Momentum on Hanukkah.
Bear Stays Up for Christmas by Karma Wilson and Jane Chapman
Bear has been sleeping — it is winter, after all — but his friends desperately want him to wake up for Christmas. To help him do so, they bake, decorate a tree, sing songs, and, when Christmas finally arrives and Bear succeeds in staying awake, he learns about the true meaning of the holiday.
Christmas Cheer by Ingela P. Arrhenius
Talk about a book that small hands will love to flip through! Christmas Cheer is exactly what it sounds like: a look through all of the ways cheer is spread during the Christmas season, including decorating a tree, caroling, baking, building snowmen, and more. The bright colors pop right alongside the varied page shapes and heights.
Christmas in the Stable by Rhonda Gowler Greene, illustrated by Virginia Allyn
Jesus’s birth is, of course, the reason behind the Christmas holiday, so this touch-and-feel board book is a great introduction to that story. What makes this one stand out is that it is not a white-washed set of illustrations.
Fa-La-La Llama by Joan Holub, illustrated by Allison Black
Read this fun book about a llama decorating for Christmas to the tune of “Deck the Halls.” The illustrations are fun and silly, and there is something on each page that is touch-and-feel.
First Christmas Personalized Book
Personalize a baby’s first Christmas book for your child or as a gift to another. Not only does this one allow you to personalize the name and dedication, but there are opportunities throughout to include beloved pets and other loved ones, too.
Grandma’s Sugar Cookie by Rose Rossner, illustrated by Kathryn Selbert
Featuring cute mice as the main characters, this book explores the love between a grandmother and grandchild. It centers on the experiences of baking cookies together during Christmas time, and obviously, there’s a recipe in the book that can be made together after reading the book.
I Can See Christmas Tree by Elly Crawford
High contrast board books are ideal for newborns and infants, as the images on these books are designed to help with their eyesight development. This one is specific to Christmas and showcases cute holiday images in those classic black, white, and bold color schemes.
Krampus Baby! by Elias Barks and Zoe Persico
How about a little winter holiday folklore for baby? Learn about the story of Krampus (as a baby) and the creatures and customs associated with it. We’re big Krampus fans in our house, so it will be hard not to grab this one for my kid — why can’t the winter holiday season also be fun and darkly funny? This is a lift the flap book sure to keep baby eager to read and discover.
You can buy other books about similar creatures of folklore in this series, including the seasonally-appropriate Yeti Baby.
Little Santa’s Workshop by Lala Watkins
Merry Christmas! What does preparing for the big day look like in Santa’s world? This book takes readers inside the magical world of Santa’s workshop and all of the elves who are busy preparing to celebrate the season.
Search for Santa Personalized Book
Though it is not a board book, this book would be a special gift for any baby in your life. It’s a personalized story about searching for Santa, filled with bright, charming illustrations.
The Snowy Day by Ezra Jack Keats
While The Snowy Day is not Christmas focused, nor even affiliated with any holiday, this winter story is a classic and available for even the littlest of readers. Follow along as Peter puts on his winter gear and has a series of tiny adventures following the first snow of the season.
Want more holiday books for children and babies? Check out: