From Chicken Soup for the Soul Daily Inspirations for Women

December 24

Alice’s mother died when she was five years old. The year was 1925, and life was hard. Alice, who grew up to be my mother, told me that her family was too poor to even afford to give her a doll.

In December 1982, I worked at a local bank. One of my customers approached me with a sample of her handiwork: beautiful, handmade dolls. She was taking orders for Christmas. I decided to get one for my five-year-old daughter and then asked my customer if she could make me a special doll for my mother—one with gray hair and spectacles: a grandmother doll.

Christmas Day arrived, and so did Santa Claus. As he turned to leave he retrieved one more gift from his knapsack. The card read:

For Alice:

I was cleaning out my sleigh before my trip this year and came across this package that was supposed to be delivered on December 25, 1925. The present inside has aged, but I felt that you might still wish to have it. Many apologies for the lateness of the gift.


Santa Claus

That doll, given by “Santa,” 57 years late, made my mother the happiest “child” alive.

Alice Ferguson

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