The wait for Christmas day can feel interminable for a youngster – just like this playful bear cub Ted – who has little understanding of time. Maybe making festive preparations can help the time pass a little more quickly…

The repetitive questioning “Is it Christmas yet?” will strike a chord with many parents contending with excitable young children who can’t contain their excitement about the impending festivities of Christmas Day.

And as excited as little Ted is, his big ol’ daddy seems to be suffering from increasingly weary exasperation at having to deliver stalling statements: ‘Not yet’, ‘Nearly’, ‘Soon’… all of which mean very little to his young son.

Big Bear finds a variety of festive projects to occupy little Ted, from wrapping presents to decorating their home. But when their perfect tree proves too big to squeeze into the house, Ted is in tears and it looks like Christmas could be scuppered…

There’s a wonderfully amiable tenderness about the daddy-son bond between the two bears with Ted’s exuberant excitement tempered by the slow patience of his father, whose vivid facial expressions veer from indulgent to perplexed to ever-so-slightly grizzly (well, he is a bear, after all).

A sweet tale that perfectly captures the highly charged atmosphere and so-excited-you-could-burst expectation that surrounds the run-up to Christmas. And clearly there are lots of parellels to be drawn between the way in which bears and humans like to celebrate!

Fun fact Bears don’t munch on Christmas cake (like the ones in this book) but they do love honey and are attracted to beehives. In fact, they will also consume the bees inside the beehive, which are a good source of protein. 

Did you know? The traditional three colors of Christmas are green, red, and gold. Green has long been a symbol of life and rebirth; red symbolizes the blood of Christ, and gold represents light as well as wealth and royalty.

Author notes Award-winning illustrator Jane Chapman graduated from university with a First Class Honors degree in illustration. Working as both Jane Chapman and under her pseudonym Jack Tickle, she has had more than 75 titles published in more than 20 countries. Jane is best known for her illustrations in Karma Wilson’s ‘Bear’ books, an internationally bestselling series which has garnered a string of awards including the Oppenheim Platinum Book Award for ‘Bear Snores On’. Jane is married to children’s author illustrator Tim Warnes. They live in the South West of England with their two boys.