The Christmas Miracle of Jonathan Toomey is another family favorite. This picture book has a message applicable to all ages. When I read this to my children, all of them ages 3-13 were engaged with the story.
Summary: Mr. Gloomy Toomey as the children called him, was a sad, grouchy man. He was however, the best woodcarver in the valley. A widow hires him to recreate a special manager scene and also asks if her son can watch him carve the set. Creating this creche starts a process of healing for Mr. Toomey. A heartwarming story of healing, kindness and peace that Jesus brings to hurting hearts.
There are so many things to talk about after reading this story. The illustrations and the storyline are wonderful. One of the discussions we had while reading this was talking about virtues. The topic came up after reading,
““Do you every stop talking?” asked the woodcarver… “
And the widow tells her son that the woodcarver has the virtue of silence. In what instances is silence a virtue? What other virtues are displayed in this story? (kindness, patience, being attentive). At this point I realized that our We Choose Virtue Cards would come in handy. I pulled them out and we went over what being kind, patient, and attentive meant.
I also found some wooden animals in my craft stash. We read the descriptions in the book again and talked about how hard it might be to create figures out of wood. For a fun activity, have your children try to recreate the animals using clay or PlayDough based on the descriptions in the story.
Check out the rest of the books in our Christmas Book Series.