Book and Gift Pairings for the Holidays

Books make great gifts any time of year. But what's even better? Books paired with a items meant to extend the enjoyment of the story! This Read, Discuss, Do! Gift Guide pairs some of our favorite books with other gifts meant to help extend the fun of the story beyond the last page and maybe even encourage some new experiences. We hope you find some good ideas for readers and doers in your life on this list. For Babies and Toddlers Hey, Bruce! by Ryan T. Higgins. Pair this super fun (and funny) interactive picture book with a black bear plush, such as this First and Main 10-inch Bear .  Stomp, Wiggle, Clap, and Tap: My First Book of Dance  by Rachel Burk and illustrated by Alyssa De Asis, a book that encourages imaginative play. Pair this book with a musical gift such as a music box or instrument. Or maybe a dance costume! More books for active babies and toddlers For Little Makers The Thingity-Jig by Kathleen Doherty and illustrated by Kristyna Litten will be a sure hit with lit

Snack and Story Time: Scarecrow Haystacks

by Mindy Baker

The Scarecrow written by Beth Ferry and illustrated by The Fan Brothers is a fall favorite that runs deep with an important message about friendship. Because Scarecrow looks scary, no one enters the field to be near him. One day, a baby crow drops into the field, injured. When the scarecrow shows kindness and helps the baby crow, it is the beginning of a special friendship. What will happen when the crow is healthy enough to fly away?

Read: The Scarecrow by Beth Ferry and illustrated by The Fan Brothers

  • Why doesn’t Scarecrow have any friends?
  • Who took care of the crow?
  • Why did the crow leave?
  • How did Scarecrow feel when the crow left?
  • What happened in the end to make Scarecrow feel good? Even though Scarecrow looked scary, how did he show he was friendly?
  • Have you ever met someone that you thought was going to be mean but ended up becoming one of your good friends? Tell about it.
Do: Make no bake haystack cookies!
  • 1 10 oz bag chow mein noodles
  • 1 pkg butterscotch chips
  • 1/2 cup peanut butter
  • Handful of roasted peanuts (optional)

Melt the chips on the stove, using a double boiler. If you don't have a double boiler, use very low heat and stir the chips constantly so they don't burn. You can also use the microwave. Stir in the peanut butter, then mix in the rest of the ingredients. Drop onto waxed paper to cool. 

(Recipe credit to


Marci said…
I love this book! It's beautiful and emotional--a strong friendship story!
Rebecca Gomez said…
Marci, I agree! And it's so beautifully illustrated.