Sunday, December 2, 2012

Twas the Mouse who Saved Christmas {children's book review}

We love story time at our house.  Our son Charlie just turned 4 months old and part of our nightly bedtime routine we have story time and read a few books with him.  We were so blessed to receive lots of wonderful children's books at his baby showers, from family members and his cousins that live on the bookshelves in his nursery.  Each night, we pull one or two books and read them to him.  It's just the best thing in the world sitting there with him in my arms, a clean baby almost ready for bed and watch as he stares as I turn the pages of each book and read the words as the illustrations bring the story to life.  While he doesn't understand exactly what's going on yet in the books, you can tell he loves story time and mom and dad love it too.

Our love for story time is why I was so excited to get our own copy of a new book from Marble Sparks to read to Charlie at night to get the holiday season started called Twas' the Mouse Who Saved Christmas.  And it's not just any holiday book, it's a personalized children's book that has your child incorporated into the story.  Based on the name, you can tell it's a new spin on the very well known Christmas poem Twas' the Night Before Christmas.  It's all about a young mouse named Pipp Squeak who works to save Christmas for your child after she makes the mistake of ripping your child's name off of Santa's list.  Sound great, right?  Well it was and so much more.

When we first sat down to read the book, I was pleasantly surprised to see Charlie's name right on the cover of the book!!  How fun!  While obviously he is too young to recognize his name, you better believe it pulled some strings at this new mom's heart.  I love personalized things, so it was already special to me that it was made just for him.

As we started to read the story, I personally loved the story line about the sweet little mouse and her interactions with Santa and his cat named Fritz.  Charlie LOVED the pictures.  Brad did such a wonderful job with the illustrations that go along with the story.  They are full of color and very stimulating for my little guy - he seemed as engaged as any four month old can be!!

We kept reading about Pipp's adventures and how she accidentally ripped Charlie's name off of Santa's Christmas list (yep, it was actually his name in the book) and was on a mission to get it back on so Charlie would still get presents from Santa.  It was so neat to keep seeing Charlie's name as part of the book and while reading it getting to say his name.  While my little man doesn't recognize many words, I would like to think his name is one of his most familiar words to him!

Ok, this might sound silly, but I literally started crying in the middle of this book when I sat there reading it to him - not like sad/bawling tears, but sweet tears. Reading this book with Charlie's name built right into the story had thinking about how different Christmas will be for us forever with him now in our lives and it made me so happy.  When Santa was telling little Pipp the mouse that they were going to Charlie's house first, all these images went through my head of next year when he's a little older and he's walking around our house on Christmas Eve getting the milk and cookies ready for Santa Clause.  And then he'll head up to bed with all the anticipation in the world for Christmas morning to be here.  Sappy mom syndrome as we celebrate this little man's first Christmas?  Yes of course.  But this book truly helped me realize just how special Christmas time is to little kids and truly how magical it can be.  And it made me SO EXCITED for this Christmas, all the traditions we will start as a family and with Charlie and all those Christmases to come.

This picture towards the end of the book made me smile lots, especially since we just got our personalized stockings last week and Charlie's stocking is very similar to this!  SO neat that Charlie is part of the story and I can just imagine in a few years when he recognizes his name and his eyes light up when we read this book!

The back of the book also had a great illustration of Fritz, the cat, and the sweet little mouse, Pipp, along with Charlie's name from Santa's list!

Here's a sweet picture that Jimmy snapped of Charlie and I reading the book in his nursery.  This book is going to have a great home on those bookshelves and I know will get read lots and lots this year but also many more years to come.

So what do you think?  A pretty great book right!?!?  Wouldn't it be a great present if you are an aunt, uncle, or grandparent or even for a friend's kid?  And as a parent - it was so special to get in the mail personalized and everything.  If you are interested in buying for this holiday season, make sure you check out Marble Spark's website to buy the book (need to order by December 11 to get in time for Christmas with standard shipping - so don't delay!).  Add it to your Christmas list right now - I know I have! 

Did you like this overall idea of a fun personalized book?  Well Marble Spark's also has another personalized book for more everyday reading called Following Featherbottom.  And actually, the wonderful Marble Spark illustrator, Brad Sneed,  lives in Kansas City and will be doing a special reading at Pottery Barn Kids on the Country Club Plaza on Sunday, December 9 at 3PM.  Pottery Barn Kids is located at 4760 Broadway on the southeast side of the plaza.  Brad will showcase Following Featherbottom and may even offer some special discounts on Twas' The Mouse Who Saved Christmas!! Charlie and I are hoping to make it that afternoon - we have a get together with Jimmy's family but are trying to work around it.  So let me know if you want to go and we can meet you there.  Great break from Christmas shopping on the plaza!

Finally, if you want even more information, make sure to follow Marble Spark on facebook ( to drop them a note on what you think of their book and stay up-to-date on announcements from them. 

Thanks to 624 Public Relations for letting Charlie and I review this book!  We loved it and will treasure it for many years to come and hope you will pick one up for the children in your life!

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