About This Book
Christmas is an exciting and joyous time of year, a time of family, friends, and traditions. You will delight in reading these 101 festive stories about the joy, wonder, and blessings of the season. This collection is filled with merry and heartwarming stories about holiday traditions, family, and goodwill. Remember, all of our stories are "Santa safe" so they can be enjoyed by the whole family. A fantastic holiday gift and a great way to start the season!
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Inspired by Chicken Soup for the Soul: It’s Christmas! by Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, and Amy Newmark
Preparing for Christmas can be so stressful that we forget the holiday season is supposed to be fun! The 101 stories in Chicken Soup for the Soul: It’s Christmas! (Chicken Soup for the Soul Publishing, LLC, Oct. 8, 2013, 978-1611599251) will help you remember why you love the holidays, as contributors recount heartwarming and funny holiday memories. Here are five ways to make your Christmas merrier.
1. See the humor in those holiday mishaps. Lil Blosfield and her young daughter easily found the perfect Christmas tree. Getting it upright into the stand at home, however, was an entirely different experience. It repeatedly fell on Lil, much to her frustration but to her daughter’s amusement. "I hoisted the tree, bent to tighten screws, and our perfect tree again plummeted down," Lil writes. "And, again, Elizabeth laughed." With her husband away, Lil finally enlisted her parents’ help. "Elizabeth was nearly rolling on the floor trying to tell the entire story," Lil writes. More than a decade later, the family now has an easy-to-set-up artificial tree. "Yet each Christmas season as we decorate, Elizabeth asks, ‘Remember when the tree kept falling on Mommy?’" Lil writes. "It is almost as if I can still hear her little girl squeals as we hang each and every ornament."
2. Use Christmas to connect with your family. Rick Lauber had become the caregiver to his father, who had Alzheimer’s disease. One year, as the family relaxed after Christmas dinner, Rick’s nephew started dribbling his new basketball around the kitchen. Rick’s father reached for the ball and began a game of catch with the family. Although the dementia had robbed his father of many of his memories and recognition skills, in that moment his father clearly recognized the ball and knew what to do with it. "I’m not sure how long we played catch. Watching the clock was not important," Rick says. "What I do know is that our game ended all too soon, and it was time to face the reality of dirty dishes piled high on countertops. The moment, though, will certainly last forever. On this Christmas, Dad gave me a special memory – one that I will always treasure."
3. Find the joy in giving. Peggy Frezon was stressed during the holiday season. Her mother told her to focus on the positives. Instead Peggy fretted over what to get her mom, who had recently moved to Canada and was still adjusting to her new life. Peggy knew her mom wanted a cat, but didn’t know how to get one to her. But when Peggy’s mother told her about her Secret Sisters gift exchange at church, Peggy plotted with her mom’s friend to get her a furry friend. "From that day on," Peggy writes, "I found myself smiling and humming Christmas carols." The day of the gift exchange, Peggy’s mother excitedly told her about the new cat, baffled by how she had arranged such a surprise. "I had taken Mom’s advice a step further. Don’t just think about the positives, do something positive," Peggy writes. And because she had, Peggy rediscovered her joy in Christmas.
4. Accept help from friends. Marya Morin woke up at the crack of dawn to prepare Christmas dinner for the 30 people she expected. The turkey hadn’t completely defrosted, so she placed it in her office, carefully closing the door to keep it away from her cats. Unfortunately, she had forgotten her dog was asleep in the office. When she went to retrieve the turkey, she realized her mistake. The dog had eaten the whole thing. At that moment, Marya’s neighbor, Amy, arrived with Christmas cookies and witnessed Marya’s turkey-less meltdown. Amy assured her she would figure something out, and told Marya to continue preparing side dishes. As promised, right before dinner, Amy showed up with two other neighbors, carrying large dishes. Each neighbor had donated part of their turkey for Marya! "Thanks to the kindness of friends and neighbors, and polite guests who never questioned the various flavors and extra turkey appendages, our Christmas went off as planned," Marya says.
5. You are never too old for tradition. Fallon Kane loves Christmas and all her family’s traditions. One tradition started when she and her twin brother, Dan, were just five years old, and continues more than a decade later. As they wait for Santa on Christmas Eve, they hear the doorbell and run out to find a package at the door for them — new pajamas. The first year, Fallon received a snowflake-sparkled nightgown and her brother got footie pajamas. Now, as teenagers, they get pajamas that match their current style. "Luckily, Santa seems to understand how our sense of style has changed as we have grown," Fallon writes. "The fanfare was nearly as great as that first Christmas twelve years ago, with Dan and I modeling the new pajamas for our mother with great excitement." And the twins still leave milk, cookies and a note for Santa.