Friday, November 23, 2012

Holiday Gift Guide: The Sparkle Box - Book

By Jill Hardie
Ideals Children's Books

Like many families, Jill Hardie saw that her family would get caught up in the tinsel, parties, gifts, lights and general busyness of the season that they would forget there is a deeper reason to celebrate Christmas. She found a special way to show her children the joy of giving to others and to teach them that giving is itself a gift! The result is The Sparkle Box: A Gift with the Power to Change Christmas, which is written by Jill Hardie, and beautifully illustrated by Christine Kornacki. Each book even comes with a beautiful sparkle box, so families can begin their own tradition this Christmas season.

Like most young children, Sam is so excited about Christmas. He’s busy thinking about his Christmas list, anticipating holiday parties and puzzling over one very mysterious gift—a sparkly box sitting on the mantel above the fireplace. Throughout the Christmas season, Sam and his family participate in various acts of kindness and service to others.  On Christmas morning, Sam finally gets to open the Sparkle Box, where he finds slips of paper recording the family’s good deeds during the holiday season.  Sam’s parents explain that the things that they've been doing for others are, in fact, a gift for God. This uplifting story will inspire readers to adopt this faith-centered tradition in their homes.

My Thoughts:
What a refreshing book! I must say that I get caught up in the hustle and bustle of the holidays. I am constantly searching for the best deals on presents and running to the stores on the busiest shopping days of the year. It's easy to lose track of what's important during the holiday season. And if it's that easy for me to lose track, I can only imagine how easy it is for my daughter who is fully caught up in the Santa and presents aspect of the holiday.

This book is a beautiful reminder that we can enjoy the holiday season and all of the traditions that go along with it, but that we should also be keeping the true meaning of Christmas in our hearts and in our lives. I love the idea of doing little deeds throughout the season and keeping them written down in the sparkle box. How special it would be to open that box on Christmas and be reminded of the people we've met, the things we had done for others. To read each slip and relive the moment on Christmas morning with our family.

This book could be the start of a beautiful tradition for you and your family. I am looking forward to putting our sparkle box to use and making a difference during the holidays... and hopefully the rest of the year, too!