Happy Birthday, Christmas Child, A Counting Nativity Book by Laura Sassi, reviewed by Kathy O’Neill

Sturdy, colorful board books are just right for little eyes and hands. And Happy Birthday, Christmas Child, A Counting Nativity Book will also delight children’s hearts during Christmas celebrations.

The author of this very special book, Laura Sassi, has been reading and writing stories and poems since she was a child. Her many books share messages of kindness, comfort, and faith with children and their families. I’m also interviewing Laura for my own blog, and I asked her where she got the idea for Happy Birthday, Christmas Child.

Laura said, “The story is inspired by a favorite Christmas verse in the Gospel of Luke that describes Mary’s soul-filling wonder as the events surrounding the birth of Baby Jesus unfolded. It reads, “But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart” (Luke 2:19, ESV).  Likewise, I hope this simple counting story of the night Jesus was born will encourage littlest readers and their caregivers to slow down and explore and count and marvel on each and every spread. I hope readers will find the story soul-filling and fun in a joyful Christmas way.”

Slowing down to marvel at Christ’s birth is a challenge for all of us during the busy holiday season. But I’ve found that sharing Christmas books such as Happy Birthday, Christmas Child with little ones is a wonderful way to provide time to treasure the true story of Christmas.

Cover of Happy Birthday, Christmas Child by Laura Sassi

7 Ways Happy Birthday, Christmas Child Helps Us Slow Down and Allow Little Hearts and Souls to Fill with the Wonder of Jesus’ Birth 

  1. Colorful illustrations will captivate children and help them follow the story.
  2. Children will see themselves and their families, helping them engage with the story
  3. Sweet rhymes tell the Christmas story in a way little ones will understand and enjoy.
  4. Happy Birthday, Christmas Child is interactive, inviting children to find and touch and count the many different creatures in the stable.   
  5. Besides the usual animals seen in Christmas stories, some surprises will bring a smile to children’s faces.
  6. Children will see kindness in the way the animals welcome Mary and Joseph and the baby Jesus.
  7. By including many of God’s creatures in the Christmas story, Happy Birthday, Christmas Child mirrors what Jesus did when He was grown. All through His ministry He used the ordinary things of life to teach spiritual lessons to adults as well as children!

And we can, too! The wonder of Jesus’ birth, the fun of finding and counting some of God’s creations such as stars and mice and spiders—all in a colorful, rhyming board book, will give children and their caregivers a stable full of opportunities to talk about Jesus, His birth, and how today we can welcome Him into our own hearts.

Happy Bithday, Christmas Child, sneak peek inside the book
Image from Happy Birthday, Christmas Child, by Laura Sassi

So this Christmas, whether in a preschool classroom, a church nursery, or gathered around a family manger scene, I think Happy Birthday, Christmas Child will encourage parents and grandparents and teachers and caregivers to make time to hold their little ones close as they read and together discover the soul-filling wonder of Jesus’ birth! What are some ways you’d like to share Happy Birthday, Christmas Child this Christmas?

How to Connect with Laura and Find Your Own Copy of Happy Birthday, Christmas Child

Happy Birthday, Christmas Child will be available in bookstores and online beginning October 4th. If you place a pre-order before October 4th, be sure to visit the book’s landing page at https://happybirthdaychristmaschild.com to get your own activity kit to goes with the book!

You can also visit Laura’s website to learn more about her and all her delightful books for children.

Kathy O’Neill is an art teacher who loves to show everyone they can draw. Visit her website http://www.kathy-oneill.com/ to discover more about her writing and workshops, and her blog https://kathythepicturelady.wordpress.com/ for a Christian view of great art and related projects and devotions for children. Kathy’s goal is to engage children’s and adult’s hearts, hands and minds to discover God and their own creativity through art, history, and nature.

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