Well kids (of all ages, of course), it’s that time again. Up here at the North Pole, Santa was so busy making sure the elves were working, and at the same time having fun, that he almost forgot to write you his annual letter. And, as you know, if the elves are not both happy and busy, they can get into a lot of mischief and we don’t want that to happen again. As Santa said last year, it is a good thing I have the love of my life, Mrs. Claus, around to help and especially remind me to write my letters.
Things are a bit tough this year with so many parents and others out of work, so a lot of the presents people want to give each other might be too expensive to give this year. But remember, it is not the gift that matters, but the thought, and anything we get from someone as a gift is always special and wonderful. And, we should look on this as a great time to get back to making, not buying, gifts for the people we love.
As you know, the elves make a lot of the presents to be delivered on Christmas Eve. And, a lot of people also make presents for their family and friends each year. Homemade presents are always the best, and there are lots of things you can make that will be very special.
One year it turned especially cold just before Santa started to leave on his trip around the world. He needed a scarf to keep his neck extra warm and he couldn’t find one. Mrs. Claus got a piece of warm flannel cloth, cut it to size and then snipped the ends to make them look like fringe. Santa loved it, especially since the cloth had one of his favorite cartoon characters printed all over it. With mom or dad’s help you could do that, and pick out a special pattern for each person.
Grandmas and grandpas would love a silhouette picture of their grandchildren. They can be easily made by taking a picture of someone from the side and, after printing it, use it as a pattern to make the silhouette on black construction paper. Mount it on a piece of white paper and put it in a frame. You will be surprised how much they will be loved, and you too.
Bracelets and necklaces are another wonderful thing for parents, grandparents or friends. They can be made with heavy string and beads or colored string found at the stores that sell things for a dollar, a place where you can also find a lot of wonderful gifts and things to make gifts, like glue, tape, construction paper and frames. Make them personal using the person’s favorite colors or maybe their name in letter beads.
Find something from someone’s past. Flea markets and thrift stores have lots of things like toys or games your parents had when they were young, or you can make one. Maybe your father talks about the wooden top or yo-yo he had as a kid. See if you can find or make one and wrap it up for him. He will be delighted and Santa is sure he will teach you how to play with it.
Bake something for someone. With an adult’s help, bake cookies for your grandparents, teachers, friends or maybe someone who lives on your street and has nobody to share Christmas with. That would be really special.
Make a Christmas tree ornament. These can be made with construction paper – make sure you have permission to use the scissors and glue, and someone to help you. Ask an adult to show you how to fold paper to make a snowflake, something Santa still likes to do. Those are always wonderful as ornaments for the tree or to put on Christmas cards. You can also ask your parents about making ornaments from flour and water. After they are baked they can be decorated with paint, sparkles and lots of other things. Make sure to point out that they should not be put too low on the tree where the family dog can get to them.
Make a Christmas card for someone. These are easy using construction paper, glue and, if you have them, old Christmas cards. You can draw on them or write something special for the person receiving them. With an adults help you can even make a hand print on them and decorated it. To make them extra special, put in a recent picture of yourself.
Give someone a coupon book filled with things you will do for them. Maybe wash the dog or the car, sweep the patio or sidewalk, vacuum the carpet or even just give them a lot of hugs when they need them the most. If you are old enough, fix them breakfast in bed.
Fill a stocking with lots of little things, some useful and some that are silly. Then everyone can sit around on Christmas and open all the things in their stockings, one at a time. A lot of people do this and have a great time smiling and laughing at each other, something we need to do more often.
I hope these ideas help you make gifts for Christmas. There are books at your local library that can give you other ideas. Homemade gifts are always the best because them come from the heart and show you really care a lot.
Well, Santa has to go make sure things are running well and the elves are all working. Right now he can hear them singing, which makes them, Mrs. Claus and especially Santa feel good. It is when things are too quiet that Santa gets nervous.
More and more letters from you are arriving every day, and Santa and the elves are keeping up with them and filling every deserving request.
Even though Christmas Eve is still days away, the reindeer are ready to go. They are all fattened up, brushed down and waiting in their stalls full of energy.
Every year Santa takes a few of the elves that have been especially good on a practice flight. This year’s test run was perfect, so everything is ready to go for Christmas eve and, yes, Santa has the scarf Mrs. Claus made him hanging next to his suit.
Keep sending all those letters to Santa and, most of all, mind your manners, listen to your parents and teachers, be good, be kind and, especially, take good care of each other,
Love, your good friend, Santa Claus