There are many different illustrated versions of the The Night Before Christmas by Clement Clark Moore. This story, as most people know, is a lengthy poem with sometimes awkward rhymes. But, it is a tradition, and the season would not be quite the same without the traditional reading on Christmas Eve.
Of all the illustrations, I prefer the one illustrated by Ruth Sanderson. The Ruth Sanderson illustrations are realistic but still gentle, and Santa looks like a magical friend. It’s our traditional read each year.
I also enjoy The Night Before Christmas as illustrated by Mary Engelbreit. Engelbreit’s illustrations have very bright colors. Her typical cartoon-like illustrations and hand-lettering (in parts) are detailed. The pages are very amusing in the portrayal of those in the story, although, with so many details, some pages look a little bit busy. The scene of Santa in the sleigh is a favorite page, and the reindeer all look unique.
I love Christmas. I love the daily reminder of Jesus Christ in the decorations and in the gift giving. But I also love the traditions of Santa Claus, the festive holiday songs, the fudge and gingerbread.
This year, I decided to immerse myself in holiday picture books. My son, at one-year-old, won’t remember a thing about this Christmas. But next year he might remember something: I want to know which picture books best bring the spirit of the season in to our home so next year we’ll be ready.