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Children bring holiday chair

Dear Santa, I am in Grade one. I like reading. I like iPads. How are you? Why do you have reindeers? This year I was good. I helped David play the Wii.

Dear Santa,

I am in Grade one. I like reading. I like iPads. How are you? Why do you have reindeers? This year I was good. I helped David play the Wii. Please could I have legos?

Love, Jesse

Christmas just got a whole lot merrier for this sometimes grinch. That’s because Crossfield and Acme elementary students submitted a number of letters to our office.

The adorable letters, filled with questions for Santa, such as: Why do your reindeer fly? Why do you deliver presents? How do you make snow fall?’ really create a sense of holiday cheer in the office.

It is just what I needed to remind me of what I love about Christmas: the joy and wonder kids have for the season.

From the intrigue of Santa and his magical reindeer to the intense excitement of presents under the tree, the season is designed for children.

Their love for the holiday even inspires excitement in stressed-out, complacent adults.

As part of my job, I take in a number of Christmas events. Although I enjoy the community events and markets, my favourites are those involving kids.

There is nothing more precious than kindergarteners dressed up as little angels, dancing and tripping over their lines.

Or the over-exuberant, slightly-off-key singing of elementary school kids, with their gap-toothed smiles and their waves to their parents.

I am blessed to have a number of siblings, cousins and friends with kids.

Every year, Christmas is teeming with the little rug rats, who have free reign to hordes of candy and Christmas baking.

You can imagine the scene: five preschoolers chasing after my son, 10, as he dodges around seated people, presents, dogs and a mountain of coats. The procession literally “laughing all the way.”

Some people might get annoyed, but I don’t mind the ruckus because I remember expressing myself in the same way when I was a kid at Christmas.

I remember my toddlers’ eyes light up as they witnessed the Christmas tree all lit up and their glee with the new toys they unwrapped.

I will never forget how both my children, and later, my nieces and nephews, discarded the clothes they unwrap, a look of disgust on their face.

There is nothing better than decorating the tree with little ones and stepping back to see the result: carefully placed decorations jammed onto the bottom third of the tree, sometimes two or three to a branch.

As my kids grew, it was exciting giving them money and helping them shop for gifts for one another and for their dad.

The excitement was extended by the secret wrapping projects in their room and the resulting strangely-shaped, lumpy packages waiting under the tree.

Opening those gifts, inevitably hand-crafted at school, was always emotional, as the kids proudly presented their work, made just for me.

The late nights trying to settle my youngsters down on Christmas Eve has been worth it for the past 14 years of wonderful Christmas mornings I have experienced.

Those of you with children know the drill: kids up at the crack of dawn squealing over their stockings and marvelling at the fact that Santa ate all of his cookies and drank his milk.

Little feet pattering down the hallway on their way to your room to show you their new treasures and beg you to get up.

Ripped paper and bows littering the floor, hugs, shining eyes and thank yous.

Those are the memories I have of Christmas morning.

Later, upon arrival at Grandma’s, the cousins spill out of the house bundled in a heap of snow pants and toques to welcome our family and drag my children out to the toboggan hill.

And the exercise is a good idea, as the kids are now on their second-round of adrenaline and are filled with nervous excitement about being with their cousins and opening the next set of gifts.

Even the teenagers are fun, coming out of their shells – and their rooms - to hang out with their aunts and uncles, play games and converse.

It must be a Christmas miracle.

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