December 2018 Monthly Newsletter

December 9, 2018

The following post will be a blog archive copy of the Build Your Library’s December 2018 Monthly Newsletter. If you missed the email, you can subscribe to our mailing list here. [Scheduled to be sent 12/10/18 6:00 AM EST]

Hey everybody, it’s Emily from Build Your Library!

If you are just going to skim the beginning, here are the main topics in this month’s newsletter:

Now that I have your attention, here are the details on those and a couple other bits of information.

Monthly Newsletter

First off, Merry Christmas! Happy Hanukkah! Happy Kwanzaa! If I missed your holiday greeting, Happy Holidays!

This month’s newsletter is coming to you a bit earlier this month. As the holiday season is nearing full swing, if we don’t reach out to you now, I’ll be too busy, you’ll be too busy, no one will read the newsletter… Let’s do it now!

January 2019 “We Need a Shero!” Family Reading Crate

Can you believe it? We are at the January 2019 Family Reading Crate! This monthly subscription-style box offering this month is titled “We Need a Shero!” – Not just for girls, I’m including at least four books in our “strong female characters” themed box – a picture book for younger children, a middle grade family read aloud, a book for older readers, and a book for you, the parent! Think of Éowyn of Rohan, Hermione Granger or Katniss Everdeen, all strong females who leap off the page.

As always, every crate will include a booklet with discussion questions and rabbit trail ideas, as well as a link to a page on our site with additional links, booklists, movies and documentaries, and printable activities to go along with the books. We sold out of the December “Happy Holidays!” crate, so don’t wait too long if you want this one. We’ll be packing and shipping the January boxes very soon, so order yours today!

2019 Build Your Library Reading Challenge

Are you looking for a fun reading challenge for the whole family? Well look no further! I created the BYL Reading Challenge, a list of 40 reading prompts to help you and your children stretch your reading muscles in 2019. Head over to our blog and download your checklist today!

Our Holiday Favorite Picture Books

There are so many wonderful holiday themed picture books that I love to read with my children this time of year. I love this time of year, and our holiday book collection has grown exponentially over the years, but there are a few (and some new titles) that stay at the very top of the pile. 

  • The Polar Express – A little boy is awakened in the night and takes a train ride with other pajama-clad children to the North Pole to visit Santa. Well written and cozy, it’s the perfect story to read on a chilly December night. 
  • The Wild Christmas Reindeer – One of our favorite Jan Brett stories, I love that this book gives a different cultural view of Santa’s reindeer. The artwork, of course is the centerpiece of this book. I could get lost in the pictures for days. The sidebars are Christmas count-down with the elves!
  • Hershel and the Hanukkah Goblins – My youngest daughter says this is her favorite holiday book. She loves the illustrations of the goblins, and I love the message of bravery and courage, not to mention that it is a rollicking good story!
  • A Wish to be a Christmas Tree – A lonely tree stands in the forest wishing to be a Christmas tree. His woodland friends show him that he’s so important to them and help him to realize his dream while still being their home. It’s such a sweet story!
  • The Great Spruce – This is a new one to our shelves this year, but I’m already in love. Alec loves trees, especially the giant spruce his grandfather planted near their home many years before he was born. When some men from the big city come to ask to use their tree for their Christmas celebration, Alec comes up with a plan to save his favorite tree. 

Family Reading Crates as Gifts

Looking for a great holiday gift idea? You are cutting it close, but we could still try to get a Family Reading Crate sent out as a gift for a whole family of readers! We still have plenty of our previous crates available (May – November) or you could pre-order a January 2019 for them.

You can purchase the crate and have it shipped directly to your recipient with a note inside telling them who it is from. Or we can ship it to you and you can wrap and place it under the tree. Let us know, and we can cover the package in brown kraft paper for mailing, to help protect the box from getting marked up or dirty during shipping, and the USPS mailing address label will not be stuck to the actual box.

BYL Social Media Shout Out

We always have our Social Media “chicklets” at the bottom of our newsletters and webpage, but we wanted to make sure you are following us on our other platforms.

The Build Your Library Facebook is our go-to social media site, and we post there frequently with cool Amazon products and book recommendations we think you would like, as well as all of our Family Reading Crate announcements, blog posts, full year and unit study product releases and updates, and more.

Our Build Your Library Instagram page regularly posts pictures and insider info about what I’m currently working on or what I’m doing with my kids.

Although not 100% exclusively Build Your Library related, our Arrrgh Schooling YouTube channel has videos about books and homeschooling – but let’s be honest – it’s mostly books. If you want to see unboxing videos for the Family Reading Crates or just want ideas for books to read (either for you for your children) you are sure to find something useful!

We also have a BYL Twitter feed where I share links and information about BYL and homeschooling.

Wrap Up

I hope your school year is merrily rolling along! If you are looking for inspiration during the holiday season, here are some articles you might find helpful:

Lastly, have you heard this cover version of “You’re A Mean One, Mr. Grinch” by PA rock band Small Town Titans on YouTube? I haven’t ever heard a cover of that song that I liked besides the original, until now.

I think that is about all for this month. Again, please follow us on whatever social media you frequent, there will be periodic updates posted there as well, but we will try to keep everyone in the know where ever you are surfing!

Thanks, Happy Holidays and happy reading!



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