Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Mother Makes Christmas

It's so hard not to become obsessed about collecting vintage children's books.  When I find an illustrator we love, I just want to track down everything I can!  Finding books at flea markets, thrift stores, and used bookshops makes it easy since you can pay less than $1 and justify bringing home a box-load.

Here's a vintage illustrator that I've lately been drawn to.  We have a few of her books floating around, one of poems and nursery rhymes and another is a chapter book called Indian Captive.

Cornelia Meigs
pictures by Lois Lenski 1940

 This one is a Christmas story about a little girl Sally and her family in Vermont.  It's been a tough year, but her mother has decided to "make Christmas" which means all the family will gather at their house for dinner.  When certain plans fall through, Sally and her brother, with the help of their vising cousin, work hard around the farm.  Their guinea hens are traded for two big turkeys and there's a bit of dangerous excitement on Christmas Day.

Just because it was a dull gray afternoon, with low skies and a soft chill in the air, Sally Gilbertson had let the school bus rumble away and had chosen to walk home.  Now it was not so very far from Christmas and still the first snow to come.  It would begin this very afternoon, Sally felt sure, for people who live on Vermont farms are always weather-wise.

And look at these great end pages!

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