Posts tagged ‘candy canes’


Ham Hands: The Christmas Elf

Written by Whitney Beatty

Illustrated by Becca Kaiser

Ham Hands the Christmas Elf by [Whitney Beatty, Becca Kaiser]

A funny book that preschoolers and primary grade readers will enjoy.

Ham Hands is an elf on Santa’s staff who has extremely large hands. As a result, he is banned from wrapping presents because he makes a mess of wrapping them. He is relegated to the candy room, bending the candy canes.

One Christmas Eve, Santa leaves a few presents behind. Ham Hands knows a deserving little girl is waiting. What can he do?

The text is a bit choppy in spots and the illustrations stylized, but the message is spot on. We are all unique and special. This book is also a godsend for parents who are all thumbs at wrapping Christmas gifts.

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Who is Santa: And how did he get to the North Pole?

Written by Stephan W. Bigalow

Illustrated by Bill Megenhardt


I received this book from the publisher and decided to voluntarily review giving my honest opinions.

An interesting book that tackles many of the legends associated with Santa Claus using a realistic, straightforward approach. This collection of short chapters containing two to five pages interspersed with full page color illustrations is intended to be an independent read for middle grade students or a read aloud broken up into sections for younger children.

Bigalow introduces Santa as a wealthy farmer living in the North Forest region. Santa enjoys crafting toys for a hobby. Mrs. Claus enjoys cooking; she understands her husband well and is adept at keeping him in tow, while at the same time providing advice and guidance. When their barns become overcrowded with toys, he decides to give his toys away. Not wanting others to feel obligated to repay him, Santa loads up his wagon on a dark winter night and the tradition of the Christmas Eve toy run springs forth. Word of his generosity explodes so Santa and Mrs. Claus set out for a larger more private location.

The following chapters will explore how they discover the Hidden Valley at the North Pole, strike up an improbable working relationship with the elf community, invent candy canes, build an enormous business enterprise, figure out how to use a sleigh and reindeer, and spread the true message of Christmas giving among themselves and others.

I used to read “The Night Before Christmas” each Christmas Eve to my children. This book could be shared as a family tradition during the weeks before Christmas, read together by older and younger siblings, or read independently by older children seeking to reignite the Christmas spirit in their hearts.

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