Our 2021 Advent Book Basket and Printable Labels {Plus Giveaway!}

by | Nov 28, 2021 | Advent and Christmas, Advent Book Basket, Giveaway | 61 comments

Happy First Sunday of Advent! 

I apologize for taking so long to get this year’s Advent labels created and uploaded to share! Our college kids were able to make the trip home for Thanksgiving and I didn’t want to spend time blogging while they were here… The visit flew by, but at least they’ll be home again in 3 1/2 weeks for Christmas break! If you could please pray for their safe travels today. Thankfully the weather is much better than it was last Tuesday and hopefully the Save-a-Deer Whistles Sean added to the front of the minivan will keep the deer (and elk, moose, etc) from jumping out into the road too… I’ll be praying to their guardian angels all day! 
Anyway… back to Advent!

The length of Advent always varies from 22-28 days, beginning with the Sunday nearest to the feast of St. Andrew the Apostle (November 30th) and embracing four Sundays. The first day of Advent can fall as early as November 27th or as late as December 3rd. This year Advent begins on Sunday, November 28th.

Every Advent our family counts down the days until Christmas with picture books, Advent Calendars, and the Jesse Tree. Years ago, when we didn’t have enough Christmas themed picture books to wrap one for each day of Advent, I would check some Christmas books out from the library just before Advent began, using Christmas Mosaic as a guide. We have added many books to our home library since then, giving one Christmas themed book to each of our children on the feast of St. Nicholas, and our collection has definitely grown.  (You can find this year’s St. Nick books here!) 

I currently keep all of our Christmas picture books on the bottom two shelves of a corner bookshelf upstairs in our school room… In the past I have filled our Advent basket with Christmas Mosaic titles and our children’s 35 Favorite Christmas Picture Books. One year I picked twenty-six of MY favorites (although I still find new favorites to add to my list each year!) and one year I left the choosing up to my husband and our oldest daughter. We’ve had great lists the last few years too: 201720182019 and 2020.
I’m running behind this year so I had some of our children help pick out this year’s books, with their youngest siblings in mind. Now I need to go and get them all wrapped while the babies nap! 

Here’s what’s getting wrapped up for this year:

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Advent Book Basket 

November 28 – 1st Sunday of Advent: Saved by the Lamb – set up Advent Calendars and Jesse Tree
November 30 – Feast of St. Andrew: The Tree That’s Meant to Be
December 3 – First Friday: Cobweb Christmas: The Tradition of Tinsel
December 4 – First Saturday: Mr. Willowby’s Christmas Tree
December 5 – 2nd Sunday of Advent: Santa Mouse – write letters to Christ Child/Saint Nicholas, bake Speculaas or St. Nicholas Cookies, and decorate St. Nicholas Chocolate Coins to give to others
December 6 – Feast of St. Nicholas: Saint Nicholas – The Real Story of Christmas Legend – St. Nicholas Brunch
December 7 – Feast of St. Ambrose: Santa Claus and the Three Bears – Bake a Honeycomb Cake
December 8 – Immaculate Conception: The Miracle of St. Nicholas – Decorate Christ Candle
December 9 – Feast of St. Juan Diego: How the Grinch Stole Christmas
December 10: A Small Miracle
December 11: Our Lady’s Wardrobe – Holy Mass at Dawn, Our Lady of Guadalupe Brunch

December 12 – 3rd Sunday of Advent/Gaudete Sunday: Bambinelli Sunday 
December 13 – Feast of St. Lucy: Hanna’s Christmas
December 14: The Grumpy Old Ox
December 15 – Ember Wednesday: The Little Match Girl
December 17 – O Sapientia and Ember Friday: Mortimer’s Christmas Manger
December 18 – O Adonai and Ember Saturday: Who is Coming to Our House?

December 19 – 4th Sunday of Advent – O Radix Jesse: Gingerbread Pirates (The birthday boy has asked for a “pirate” theme this year… I’m going to order this book to wrap and slip in to the basket, unless anyone has a better suggestion?)
December 21 – O Oriens and Winter Solstice: Winter is the Warmest Season
December 22 – O Rex Gentium: The Christmas Cookie Sprinkle Snitcher
December 23 – O Emmanuel: Home for Christmas (College kids finally fly home!) 
December 24 – Vigil of Christmas: A Child’s Christmas Counting Book (New for this year!) 

Many years ago now (six or seven?) I switched to brown paper along with purple and pink ribbon, instead of the original purple and pink wrapping paper I would use years ago… Sometimes I use brown paper bags and sometimes I pick up a roll of brown craft paper from the craft store to use along with the ribbons I reuse every year and our homemade labels!

As always, we’ll unwrap and read one book each night during Advent, following our family rosary. The rest of our book collection will be placed in additional baskets to read during the seasons of Advent and Christmas. 
If you’d like to use my little labels too, you can download my Advent Book Basket Labels for 2021 over at Dropbox.

Two BRAND NEW books from Sophia Press!


  1. Brenna

    I look forward to your advent basket every year.

  2. Mama LD

    Awesome selection as usual!

  3. Anonymous

    Thank you so very much for sharing your talents. I've been following your blog for years, and my children have been blessed so much so. May God bless you and your beautiful abundantly!

  4. Mary

    Happy Advent!

  5. Kfussner

    As a book lover, I have always looked forward to your book lists. Thank you for sharing.

  6. Jenny

    I've been following your blog for years and this year we only needed to wrap 3 library books as we've been slowly adding our own collection. Thank you for making our advent special!

  7. Martianne

    These books look lovely! You always make such a great list.

  8. Kfussner

    As a book lover, I have always looked forward to your book lists. Thank you for sharing.

  9. Karen H

    Not only do you always (somehow!) unearth the very best books that always appeal, but you have giveaways AND your description of the season,(read one book each night following the family rosary), makes it all so sound so COZY! Thank you for bringing joy to the world 🙂

  10. Maria Joan

    Beautiful as always! Thank YOU.

  11. Lemmon

    Thank you for the great book recommendations!

  12. MaryLiz

    Thank you for the book labels and great book ideas! Thanks to you my family has been doing a book advent calendar for a couple years now.

  13. Lemmon

    I always love your book recommendations. Thank you!

  14. thewalshfam

    Thanks so much for sharing all of these beautiful books!

  15. Erin

    Thank you as always for these book labels!! I think you almost have every possible date variation for Advent made now, huh? I appreciate them and use them every year!

  16. Jessica Gordon

    You're welcome! I'm so glad to hear so many families use them each year!

    I was trying to figure that out today! It looks like I now have all but one. My original files are on an old computer in the school room (not on my laptop) which is another reason it took me so long to get to making them for this year. I might need to just make that last variation and have it done! I really would like to convert them all to a template for printable Avery labels and might just have to do that too.

  17. Mimi G.

    I love your book lists. We have enjoyed SO many titles that have become family favorites over the last few years. I always enjoy looking up the new titles too. God bless you and thank you for sharing.

  18. MC

    Love the book selection!

  19. starzine

    Wonderful list of books.

  20. Susan Lueger

    Started doing this last year after seeing the idea on your blog. Our kids really look forward to opening the book each day.

  21. Elizabeth

    Thanks for the recommendations!

  22. Cindy

    You pick the best books every year and I always find several that I've missed to bring into our Advent. The two giveaway books are already on my radar!

  23. Nancy

    P.S. I forgot to say that I am glad the college kids made it home for Thanksgiving and am praying for a safe trip home for Christmas.

  24. Nancy

    This post always makes me want to invite myself to your home to have a look at your MANY books. Your children are blessed.

  25. joy

    Always such great suggestions for books and other things. God Bless you Jessica and your wonderful family.

  26. Jodi S

    I always look forward to your book ideas! I can’t wait to add some of them to our family’s collection! Thank you!

  27. Hannah

    Always enjoy seeing your book recommendations. Thank you!

  28. Anonymous

    Thank You for the giveaway and the book list.

  29. Christine

    I love this idea! So many great books here!!

  30. Kalen Anderson

    What awesome Advent Books! And the labels are lovely.

  31. Anonymous

    My family enjoys "A Pirates Night Before Christmas" by Philip Yates. A fun pirate themed Christmas book!

  32. Cmerie

    Thank you for this list!

  33. M.E.

    Hello & Happy Advent to you and your little loved ones, Jessica!
    There’s a pirate Christmas book seen on Amazon that looks really cute.
    It’s called A Pirate Christmas Story. Here’s the review left by “Carla the Reader”:
    “What an awesome way to convey the Nativity Story. I picked this book to read to my grandchildren because, Pirates and Christmas, what's not to like. We were in for a big surprise. Instead of a pirate party, we were treated to a Pirate Christmas Story, complete with "a Lass named Mary" and lots of treasure. This was the Nativity story told with a pirate's eye. As Pirate Dad and Joe read the story, Joe asked questions and Dad answered. My grandchildren enjoyed this format and then asked me the same questions. The illustrations are fun, bright and large. These pirates are not scary, but they do have missing teeth, skinny legs, big bellies and Bright colors and instead of a parrot, they have a hamster. The party eventually happens aboard the boat, but the message of the true meaning of Christmas is there sparkling in the stars. A great book for a family library.”
    Maybe an option to consider? It looks like a fun read with the true meaning of Christmas included. Must admit, “a Lass named Mary” gave me a giggle, & what’s not to like about that, me hearties??

  34. Kristy

    This list is a great help for my classroom library!

  35. Alanna Garcia

    I appreciate the book list. It gives me some new ideas. God bless

  36. Susie

    Both of these books look gorgeous. You always find such treasures. Thank you!

  37. Michele

    Thank you for always having great ideas for me to share our faith with my children!

  38. Sarah

    So many fun books!

  39. Anonymous

    I look forward to your book recommendations all the time!

  40. Leslie

    I always love your book lists, but Christmas books are definitely my favorites!

  41. Anonymous

    I love your Christmas posts every year! Thank you!

  42. Emily Perea

    I love looking at what you pick! Book lists are my inspo.

  43. Kelly

    Always look forward to your new book picks!
    Thank you!

  44. Anonymous

    Looking forward to enjoying more Christmas books this season!

  45. Andrea C.

    excited to be doing my first ever advent book basket with the wrapping paper this year and being intentional about it!

  46. Donna Marie

    I love your giveaways…such great ideas!

  47. Brigid Mary

    Got our advent books all set! Many of which came from your suggestions!

  48. Jocelyn K

    I love these posts so much; thank-you so much for doing this. ❤️❤️❤️

  49. joy

    Jessica THANK YOU for offering this giveaway on your site. I got the Saint Lucy box that I won in the giveaway just now and I am just overwhelmed. Everything is so nice and it was packed so well that nothing was damaged. I just wish I had younger God-children to pass some of this on to but I know some little ones at Church that may get the things I don't keep.

    I will definitely recommend Saints Around the World as often as I can.

    And this will hopefully touch your heart, St. Lucy is a Saint I've prayed and asked her intercession MANY times. Both my husband and I have Glaucoma and quite a few family and friends have eye issues. So I definitely got the right Saint box as my prize.

    THANK YOU and God bless you and yours.

  50. Anonymous

    Thank you so much for hosting these giveaways, and for all of the resources on your beautiful blog. But thank you even more for your witness of Catholic family life!

  51. k


  52. Jess

    What lovely book options–thank you for compiling!

  53. Meg

    This is yet another awesome giveaway! I have been eyeing the Saint Joseph book this past month. Thank you for all that you do!

  54. Unknown

    The books look lovely!

  55. Sherri

    Thanks once again for your generous giveaway! Happy, happy Advent to you!

  56. Anonymous

    Love your blog and giveaway!!! Lisa P

  57. Anonymous

    Thank you for always offering such good resources like these lists of books for Advent -LB


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Hi! I'm Jessica, a Roman Catholic wife and home educating mother to our nine children. I was home educated myself, along with my eleven younger siblings. I have a special devotion to St. Therese, through whom I have been given much help and many blessings--the beautiful "Shower of Roses" that she has sent my way! Here I will record a few of the blessings I treasure. Please remember that what you see here is just a little glimpse at our lives, so please say a prayer for us, as we continue to strive for holiness.

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