"Is Santa Claus Real?"  
Bobby Decker and his friend seem to think so...

"Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus" is a lovely story, but it is not the only answer to that question.  Here's another wonderful story, but I have no idea who wrote it... it stopped in to cheer me up just before Christmas this year.  I'm passing it on as a gift to you... I think you'll love it!

"I remember my first Christmas adventure with Grandma. I was just a kid.  I remember tearing across town on my bike to visit her on the day my big sister dropped the bomb: "There is no Santa Claus," she jeered. "Even dummies know that!"

"My Grandma was not the gushy kind, never had been. I fled to her that day because I knew she would be straight with me. I knew Grandma always told the truth, and I knew that the truth always went down a whole lot easier when swallowed with one of her "world-famous" cinnamon buns. I knew they were world-famous, because Grandma said so. It had to be true."

"Grandma was home, and the buns were still warm. Between bites, I told her everything. She was ready for me. "No Santa Claus?" she snorted...."Ridiculous! Don't believe it. That rumor has been going around for years, and it makes me mad, plain mad!! Now, put on your coat, and let's go."

"Go? Go where, Grandma?" I asked. I hadn't even finished my second world-famous cinnamon bun. "Where" turned out to be Kerby's General Store, the one store in town that had a little bit of just about everything. As we walked through its doors, Grandma handed me ten dollars. That was a bundle in those days. "Take this money," she said, "and buy something for someone who needs it. I'll wait for you in the car." Then she turned and walked out of Kerby's."

"I was only eight years old. I'd often gone shopping with my mother, but never had I shopped for anything all by myself. The store seemed big and crowded, full of people scrambling to finish their Christmas shopping."

"For a few moments I just stood there, confused, clutching that ten-dollar bill, wondering what to buy, and who on earth to buy it for.  I thought of everybody I knew: my family, my friends, my neighbors, the kids at school, and the people who went to my church."

"I was just about thought out, when I suddenly thought of Bobby Decker. He was a kid with bad breath and messy hair, and he sat right behind me in Mrs. Pollock's grade-two class. Bobby Decker didn't have a coat. I knew that because he never went out to recess during the winter. His mother always wrote a note, telling the teacher that he had a cough, but all we kids knew that Bobby Decker didn't have a cough; he didn't have a good coat. I fingered the ten-dollar bill with growing excitement. I would buy Bobby Decker a coat!"

"I settled on a red corduroy one that had a hood to it. It looked real warm, and he would like that.  "Is this a Christmas present for someone?" the lady behind the counter asked kindly, as I laid my ten dollars down. "Yes, ma'am," I replied shyly. "It's for Bobby."

"The nice lady smiled at me, as I told her about how Bobby really needed a good winter coat. I didn't get any change, but she put the coat in a bag, smiled again, and wished me a Merry Christmas."

"That evening, Grandma helped me wrap the coat (a little tag fell out of the coat, and Grandma tucked it in her Bible) in Christmas paper and ribbons and wrote, "To Bobby, From Santa Claus" on it."

"Grandma said that Santa always insisted on secrecy. Then she drove me over to Bobby Decker's house, explaining as we went that I was now and forever officially, one of Santa's helpers."

"Grandma parked down the street from Bobby's house, and she and I crept noiselessly and hid in the bushes by his front walk. Then Grandma gave me a nudge. "All right, Santa Claus," she whispered, "get going."

"I took a deep breath, dashed for his front door, threw the present down on his step, pounded his door and flew back to the safety of the bushes and Grandma.  Together we waited breathlessly in the darkness for the front door to open. Finally it did, and there stood Bobby."

"Fifty years haven't dimmed the thrill of those moments spent shivering, beside my Grandma, in Bobby Decker's bushes. That night, I realized that those awful rumors about Santa Claus were just what Grandma said they were -- ridiculous. Santa was alive and well and we were on his team."

"I still have the Bible, with the coat tag tucked inside: $19.95."

"May you always have LOVE to share,
HEALTH to spare and FRIENDS that care...
And may you always believe in the magic of Santa Claus!"

... Oh... and if you happen to think that Santa Claus has the power to help heal the world, or if you know who authored this lovely little story... please leave a comment on this post!

Merry Christmas from Grandma Jo!

Happy Birthday to Ellie!!
Happy New Year to all.... may all of your dances be happy... may all of your audiences cheer for you... may you bless the world with positive energy and cheer the whole year through!
Happy Birthday to our 4 year old grandson, David Cornelsen.... party on!!

My Aunt Bonnie sent this poem to my 86 year old mother, Betty Marie Lyman Rasmussen Christmas 2010They are part of "the greatest generation" and have been sending hand written Christmas Cards since the 1940's.

"I have a list of folks I know, all written in a book.
And every year when Christmas comes, I go and take a look.
And that is when I realize that these names are a part
Not of the book they're written in, but of my very heart.
For each name stands for someone who has crossed my path sometime,
And in that meeting they've become the rhythm in each rhyme.

And while it sounds fantastic for me to make this claim
I relly feel that I'm composed of each remembered name.
And while you may not be aware of any special link,
Just meeting you has changed my life, a lot more than you think.
For once I've met somebody, the years cannot erase
The memory of a pleasant word or of a friendly face.

So never think my Christmas cards are just a mere routine
Of names upon a Christmas list forgotten in between.
For when I send a Christmas card that is addressed to you,
It's because you are on the list of folks whom I'm indebted to.
Cause I am but the total of the many folks I've met
And you happen to be one of those I prefer not to forget.

And whether I have known you for many years or few,
In some way you have had a part in shaping things I do.
So every year when Christmas comes, I realize anew,
The best gift life can offer is meeting folks like you!
And may the Spirit of Christmas that eternally endures,
Leave its richest blessings in the hearts of you and yours." ~ Dotty Abernathy
When I was a little girl, Christmas was the ONE holiday that my family celebrated. I have fond memories of my big brothers winding strings of bright Christmas light bulbs round and round freshly cut trees.  Only when the lights were on and tested were the rest of us allowed to help decorate the tree. Mother insisted that we separate the tinsel strands and put them on the tree one at a time.

There were seven of us - plus Dad & Mom - that made nine.  And yes, we squabbled a bit, like all children do. Still, we loved it...but it was more than the tree and the tinsel.  The real blessing was that decorating the Christmas Tree was something we all could do together... something that mattered to each of us... adults, teens and toddlers alike! 

Click in the comment section below and tell me one of your favorite Christmas Tree Traditions...