Saturday, March 20, 2010

Picture Books for Easter

With Easter just two weeks away, I spent some time this weekend pulling out and organizing all of our Easter Picture Books, and ordering a few new ones for the children's Easter Baskets this year.

I have most of them listed in my sidebar right now, but since I've received a number of emails asking which ones we've enjoyed the most, I thought it would list them here as well:


~ The Garden of the Good Shepherd ~ 


Our absolute favorite book for Easter is not actually a "book" but rather a Sticker Calendar!  We have used  The Garden of the Good Shepherd to count down the 50 days of Easter for the past two years now, and will be using it again this coming Easter Season.  The guide that comes with the sticker calendar suggests bible verses to look up and read, which coordinate with the sticker/symbol for each day.


~ Benjamin's Box and Resurrection Eggs ~ 


Another one of my childrens favorites is Benjamin's Box: The Story of the Resurrection Eggs.  We also have a set of Resurrection Eggs to go along with the story.  These Resurrection Eggs are now very expensive at Amazon, but it would be very easy to make your own!

Note: The book Benjamin's Box only includes 10 symbols and our set of Ressurrection Eggs has 12.  We include those extra eggs by opening Egg #9: Soldiers Spear and Egg #10: Linen Wrapping  with the reading for "The Cloth" and Egg #11: Stone at the Tomb and Egg #12: Empty Tomb with the last reading for "The Stone."


Update:  If you'd like to use the Resurrection Eggs, and you'd rather not make your own, you can find an updated package of our Resurrection Eggs for only $12.99 here.

Another Update:  I've just found out that I would no longer recommend this book, due to revisions in the newest editions.  I'll post more later, but for now you can read more in the comment section of this post.


~ The Jesus Garden ~


I think The Jesus Garden: An Easter Legend is my favorite Easter Book!  The images are beautiful and I love the story.  It SO makes me want to plant Morning Glories, Bleeding Hearts, and Dogwood Trees!  If only the deer didn't eat everything we plant... Hillside Education has a great Study Guide to go with this book.


~ The Easter Story ~


We LOVE Petook by Caryll Houselander and illustrated by Tomie dePaola.  Unfortunately it is out of print, and rather expensive for used copies, so we borrow it from the library each year.

We also love the books by Brian Wildsmith including Jesus (which the boys recently re-read in History) and The Easter Story which is told through the eyes of the little donkey who carried Christ into Jerusalem.    Both are excellent books filled with beautiful illustrations!

Oh!  There is a also a study guide in Catholic Mosaic for Petook and one at Hillside for The Easter Story.

Another one of our favorites is The Easter Story by Gennady Spirin, it stands out particularly for the gorgeous illustrations, just like her book We Three Kings.


We also have The Easter Story by Fr. LovasikThe Story of Easter by Aileen Fisher, and The Very First Easter by Paul Maier.


~ Decorating Easter Eggs ~


Easter Eggs for Anya: A Ukrainian Celebration of New Life in Christ  and Rechenka's Eggs are definitely favorites, particularly of my girls who received them in their Easter baskets last year.   Both are about making traditional Ukrainian pysanky and end with sweet surprises.  When my girls are a little older (perhaps next year?) I want to purchase a Ukrainian Egg Decorating Kit and learn how to make these beautiful eggs!


The Country Bunny and the Little Gold Shoes is an old favorite that comes off the shelf year round, but especially at Easter time.  Such a cute story!

Another favorite is The Egg Tree, but this too has always been borrowed from the library.


~ For the Littlest Ones ~

All my children have loved the Catholic Babies First Easter. Our Oldest received it in his Easter Basket when he was a baby, and it has been carried around for nearly 10 years.   I think they all loved that it had a little handle attached.   I thought about purchasing another copy to put in Rose's Easter Basket, but it looks like it is now out of print... I hate it when that happens!


I do have a new favorite Board Book though!  The Saving Name of God the Son is excellent!  Snuggles received it for Christmas from his grandparents and I can't recommend it enough!  It starts with the Annunciation and continues through the life of Christ including the Last Supper, the Crucifixion, and the Resurrection.   Even though it is a board book, I often find my older children looking through the beautiful images on each page, which are all Renaissance paintings by Fra Angelico.


The First Easter Bunny is a sweet little book that was written by a Catholic Priest.  It is a story about a bunny who follows Jesus through the events that take place during Holy Week and is the first living creature to see the Risen Jesus.  My older children are quick to point out that this is "just a story and we don't really know if a bunny was the first animal to see Jesus," but my little ones really love listening to the story.  :)


~ Little Saints Pre-School Easter Books ~


I purchased these (Happy Easter Day!Easter and The Best Thing About Eastera number of years ago to go with our Little Saints Preschool Program.  They are cute enough, but if I could go back I would have saved my money for any of the books listed above! ;)


~ Library Books ~


In addition to Petook, I also just requested The Easter Egg by Jan Brett and The Golden Egg Book by Margaret Wise Brown from our local library again this year.


~ For This Years Easter Baskets ~ 


We always like to include a new book in our children's Easter Baskets, and so far I've ordered these three for this year:  Easter by Fiona French, The Bird's Gift: A Ukrainian Easter Story, and A Tale for Easter by Tasha Tudor.

I'm still on the lookout for a few more,
so I'd love to hear about any other favorites you all might have!  

13 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing, Jessica. I always appreciate your kid picks!

    Sadly (although gladly for me) all but one title I checked on at our library was available. Now they are reserved for me! :-)

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  2. Yay! Sounds like you have a great library system! I hope you enjoy the books!

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  3. I was just able to get Petook for 7.99 sterling from Amazon.co.uk. It is an absolutely darling book.

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  4. Books!! My favourite topic:) Thanks for sharing:)

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  5. Thank you so much for this post! I love hearing your recommendations for books!

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  6. Thanks for doing the hard part, Jessica. I just opened my amazon and library tabs and filled my Easter book basket. Love that!

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  7. My five year old has liked this one: http://www.amazon.com/Very-First-Easter-More-Kids/dp/0819880329/ref=sr_1_10?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1269265740&sr=8-10

    My 2 year old likes this board book:
    http://www.amazon.com/Day-Jesus-Easter-Board-Books/dp/0310708435/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1269265831&sr=1-1

    And they both love this one, the Easter story told through the eyes of two swallows: http://www.amazon.com/Easter-Swallows-Vicki-Howie/dp/0819823600/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1269265879&sr=1-1

    Thanks for sharing your favorites!

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  8. Your post is a wonderful resource for me. thank you for sharing all your time tested favorites.

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  9. I got Petook this year for about $15. I was so glad because I'd been watching for it, and it gets as high as $50. This time of year it will probably be more pricey...I bought mine in January.

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  10. You can still get Resurrection eggs at familylife.com or christianbook.com for $12.99
    We use them every year as part of our neighborhood Easter egg hunt and they are a big hit. If someone finds an egg with one of the symbols inside, they share about what it represents and then they get a prize.

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  11. Oh, how I love it when you do posts like this! I linked on my weekly roundup. I'm not sure that I've ever looked forward to Easter more than I have this year...

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  12. Almost all the books were at my library too! Yay!

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