313A: Christmas Cat (Solved)

The book was older, around in the 80’s/90’s, maybe older than that. It was a children’s Christmas Story of an old man who lived alone. He was known as a grumpy old man. A strange cat came to visit him everyday before Christmas and everyday he would angrily make the cat leave. On the final day (Christmas maybe?) something happened  (a memory of a loved one or something?) he was overjoyed with the cat for some reason and he let him stay. The story ended with him loving the cat and it being the best gift he had ever received. The title seems like it was “Mr. Mcdoogal’s Best Christmas Ever” or something similar. I feel strongly that the old man went by Mr. Something that starts with an “m”. The central theme was how angry/grumpy the lonely old man was and how his anger grew everyday the cat showed up until something changed and he loved the cat suddenly. Maybe the cat stopped coming for a while and it made him realize how he had grown fond of the cats visits and he was overjoyed when he returned?

305E: Little Whisker Wax

A little mouse is trying to guess what his mother wants for Christmas. He makes many guesses. One of the guesses is “my little whisker wax.” Ultimately the mother wants a hug for Christmas. The book was available as long ago as the early 1960s

304Y: A wave in the moonlight

My memory is it is Christmas Eve, and a mother rabbit comforts her son who is missing his grandpa that died. She goes to the window and waves her hand in the moonlight to cheer him up saying that is what grandpa did for her when she was little.  Then her son shares memories of grampa and says while mom is cooking the next day, he can carry on traditions of what grampa used to do like help the younger kids ride a bike, letting them win games, etc.

Thanks for your help tracking this book down.

303P: A Christmas story with a house on stilts

Looking for a book that my sister remembers, hoping to find it for her and surprise her.

She remembers this:

1) Early in the book is an illustration of houses on stilts

2) There is porridge that has a single almond hidden in it and one lucky person will find it

3) There is a man with a broken tooth

4) I think she said it is a Christmas story

Thank you!!!

296N: Cristobel and a tinkling Christmas Tree Fairy

Hi. I am trying to remember and locate a book that I loved as a child – possibly published between 1956 and 1961, in which the centrepiece was a Christmas Tree with a fairy that every now and then tinkled. In any memory the tree stood on the landing at the top of the stairs in the house.  It may have involved a girl called Cristobel /Christobel/Christobal.

Was it the same or another book in which there was a character, a girl, called Aurora. In this book there seemed to be a grove or woods.

Both were well-written and may have been Australian prize-winners from the Children’s Book Council or similar. However they do not seem to me to have been particularly Australian in flavour. Possibly English.

291W: Girl wants tassels for her sled (Solved)

This book must date back to the 1940s. I remember finding it at our summer home in NH, where there were all kinds of odd books for young people about.

It is a picture book. The illustrations are similar to pen-and-ink drawings that have been colored in, quite bright, beautiful sense of line.

The story is about a girl (and her brother) in a northern country (Scandinavia?). In the winter (Christmas?) they decorate sleds with strings of colored tassels for some procession. The girl cleans house for an old woman who makes her the tassel string. The girl gets caught in a terrible snowstorm on the way home and takes shelter in the root-hole of a much loved ancient oak tree. (The oak tree is a character in the story too.) This is where she is found.

I have never encountered this book anywhere else. It doesn’t ring a bell with anyone I have ever talked to.

Thanks for your suggestions!

289C: Curious old doll gets new clothes and a new owner for Christmas

From what I recall about the ending of the book: There is an older doll who used to be played with all the time but now had long since been forgotten and was put in an attic. One Christmas she comes down the stairs to experience the warmth and beauty of the Christmas tree lights once everyone had gone to bed on Christmas Eve. While she is downstairs, Santa Claus realises he forgot a present for one of the children (was this an orphanage?) and he spots the doll. (And for some reason I keep thinking the doll’s name was Clara.) The doll is mortified that Santa picks her up and puts her under the tree as a gift. She is too old (too stiff) to make it back up stairs and she realises how outdated he clothes and hair look when the newer dolls are laughing at her. The angel atop the tree looks down and feels sorry for her so she somehow manages to adorn the tree with lots of new clothes. When the children come down the stairs on Christmas morning they want to play with the old doll who now looks new and stylish. (I do not recall if the doll was intended for one special child or not).