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Representative Jim Buchy… Celebrating the Christmas Spirit
‘Tis the season for Christmas trees, holiday wreaths, gifts, and enjoying the company of our loved ones as we sit by the fire. But most importantly, Christmas is a time to join together to celebrate Christ’s birth. In the hustle and bustle of shopping and decorating Christmas trees, we often forget the true meaning of the holiday and the faith upon which our nation was built. From... read more.
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The true meaning of Christmas, By Lois Wilson
Once again Senior Scribe Poet Laureate Lois Wilson is on top of the season with her insightful look at the important events of the day. In this case, it’s Santa Claus… or more accurately, the Christmas Season! Lois provides the solution to no chimneys for Santa, then offers insight into the true meaning of Christmas. Wilson's completed set has a new edition – now six volumes... read more.
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My Christmas Wishes, By Bob Robinson
I had just received a letter from Jim Neely wishing my friends and family a Merry Christmas from Vietnam. I knew that was impossible; I was dreaming… my Texas A&M buddy lost his life Aug. 23, 1968. I pictured dad with his cigar, sitting back in his armchair, a half smile on his face. Every once in a while I’d pause from tearing open presents and glance... read more.
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The First Thanksgiving, By Albert F. Blaisdell and Francis K. Ball
All through the first summer and the early part of autumn the Pilgrims were busy and happy. They had planted and cared for their first fields of corn. They had found wild strawberries in the meadows, raspberries on the hillsides, and wild grapes in the woods. In the forest just back of the village wild turkeys and deer were easily shot. In the shallow... read more 
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A salute to our soldiers, From a CNO Reader
As the year draws to a close, County News Online felt it was appropriate (and important) to offer a salute to those who gave us the freedom to have this celebration… our nation’s soldiers. Twas the night before Christmas, He lived all alone, In a one bedroom house made of Plaster and stone. I had come down the chimney, With presents to give... read more 
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Christmas Day in the Morning, By Pearl S. Buck
He woke suddenly and completely. It was four o'clock, the hour at which his father had always called him to get up and help with the milking. Strange how the habits of his youth clung to him still! Fifty years ago, and his father had been dead for thirty years, and yet he waked at four o'clock in the morning. He had trained himself to turn over and go to sleep, but this morning it was Christmas... read more 
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Classic Literature… The Holy Night
There was a man who went out in the dark night to borrow live coals to kindle a fire. He went from hut to hut and knocked. "Dear friends, help me!" said he. "My wife has just given birth to a child, and I must make a fire to warm her and the little one." But it was way in the night, and all the people were asleep. No one replied. The man walked and walked. At last he saw the gleam of a fire... read more 
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From “God Don’t Make Junk”… The Golf Balls of Life, By Bob Robinson
In 2005 I wrote as part of the introduction to my book, “God Don’t Make Junk, from Ramblings of an Old Man,” an adaptation to something that was floating around the Internet. It was about golf balls and pebbles and sand and stuff. The message was powerful; the delivery… well… so, so. I love stealing great ideas that are presented in a... read more 
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The famous poem, "Night before Christmas", By Clement Clarke Moore
'Twas the night before Christmas, when all thro' the house, Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse; The stockings were hung by the chimney with care, In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there; The children were nestled all snug in their beds, While visions of sugar plums danc'd in their heads, And Mama in her 'kerchief, and... read more 
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Inspirational Stories… A glass of Milk, paid in Full
One day, a poor boy who was selling goods from door to door to pay his way through school, found he had only one thin dime left, and he was hungry. He decided he would ask for a meal at the next house. However, he lost his nerve when a lovely young woman opened the door. Instead of a meal he asked for a drink of water. She thought he looked hungry so brought him a large glass... read more 
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American Literature… Christmas Every Day, by William Dean Howells
The little girl came into her papa's study, as she always did Saturday morning before breakfast, and asked for a story. He tried to beg off that morning, for he was very busy, but she would not let him. So he began: "Well, once there was a little pig--" She put her hand over his mouth and stopped him at the word. She said she had heard little pig-stories till she was perfectly sick of them... read more 
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From County News Online… This Christmas Vacation… I’m Bored!
The kids are out of school. Christmas vacation has just started. The excitement reaches its peak. Santa’s coming. Santa’s coming!! But it’s only Tuesday. “Mommy, when will Santa be here?” Friday, buddy! “Is that tomorrow?” No, buddy. Four more days… “But Mommy! I’m bored!” One of the things that might help out a little is having them play some games at northpole.com. They can visit... read more 
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American Literature… A College Santa Clause, by Ralph Henry Barbour
A story of friendship and companionship extended during the holiday season. Note well, that "Santa Clause" is a play on words rather than a misspelling. Satherwaite, '02, threw his overcoat across the broad mahogany table, regardless of the silver and cut-glass furnishings, shook the melting snowflakes from his cap and tossed it atop the coat, half kicked, half shoved a big leathern armchair up to the wide... read more 
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The Innkeeper's Tale, by Dr. Ralph F. Wilson
They think I'm some kind of cruel, heartless landlord. Someone must have told them that. But they're wrong, just plain wrong, and it's time to set the record straight, once and for all. People say I'm an innkeeper. I suppose you'd call it an inn. To us it's just a big house. My grandfather, Joshua ben-Yahoudi, built it back when his... read more 
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State Representative Jim Buchy… Santa Claus is Coming to Town
Every Christmas, we look forward to celebrating the birth of Jesus with friends and family, as we all crowd around a dinner to enjoy each other’s company.  While our kids look forward to this excitement as well, their enthusiasm is most often directed toward the annual visit of Santa Claus. Each Christmas Eve, Santa delivers presents to children across the globe, including the good boys and girls... read more 
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American Literature… The Little Match Girl, by Hans Christian Andersen
Most terribly cold it was; it snowed, and was nearly quite dark, and evening-- the last evening of the year. In this cold and darkness there went along the street a poor little girl, bareheaded, and with naked feet. When she left home she had slippers on, it is true; but what was the good of that? They were very large slippers, which her mother had hitherto worn; so large were they... read more 
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A Letter from Santa Claus, by Mark Twain
Palace of Saint Nicholas in the Moon Christmas Morning - My Dear Susy Clemens, I have received and read all the letters which you and your little sister have written me . . . . I can read your and your baby sister's jagged and fantastic marks without any trouble at all. But I had trouble with those letters which you dictated through your mother and the nurses... read more 
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Darke County Senior Scribe… It’s Christmas in Darke County… 2015, By Lois Wilson
Once again Senior Scribe Poet Laureate Lois Wilson is on top of the season with her insightful look at the important events of the day. This time it’s Christmas. Wilson offers three poems, each addressing a different look at the Christmas holiday season… A showplace house crisis, Christmas arrives and A scatter matter. Wilson's completed set - five volumes - of published poetry is now available... read more 
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CNO Christmas Stories… A Country Christmas, by Louisa May Alcott
"A handful of good life is worth a bushel of learning." Dear Emily, --I have a brilliant idea, and at once hasten to share it with you. Three weeks ago I came up here to the wilds of Vermont to visit my old aunt, also to get a little quiet and distance in which to survey certain new prospects which have opened before me, and to decide whether I will marry a millionaire and become... read more 
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CNO Christmas Stories… The History of 'The Twelve Days of Christmas'
The song, "The Twelve Days of Christmas" is an English Christmas carol. From 1558 until 1829, Roman Catholics in England were not permitted to practice their faith openly. Someone during that era wrote this carol as a catechism song for young Catholics. It has two levels of meaning: the surface meaning plus a hidden meaning... read more 
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County News Online Christmas
The “holiday” shopping season began on Black Friday… or was it actually on Thanksgiving Day… yeah, well, probably it started a week or two before Thanksgiving for some merchants. Then there was Small Business Saturday. And then there was Cyber Monday. I’m all for business and the economy, and most retailers rely on a... read more 
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A Kidnapped Santa Claus, by L. Frank Baum
Santa Claus lives in the Laughing Valley, where stands the big, rambling castle in which his toys are manufactured. His workmen, selected from the ryls, knooks, pixies and fairies, live with him, and every one is as busy as can be from one year's end to another. It is called the Laughing Valley because everything there is happy and gay. The brook chuckles to itself as it leaps rollicking between its green banks... read more 
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The Elves and The Shoemaker, by The Brothers Grimm
A shoemaker, by no fault of his own, had become so poor that at last he had nothing left but leather for one pair of shoes. So in the evening, he cut out the shoes which he wished to begin to make the next morning, and as he had a good conscience, he lay down quietly in his bed, commended himself to God, and fell asleep. In the morning, after he had said his prayers, and was just going to sit down... read more 
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NorthPole.com… Help your child get the full enjoyment of the Christmas season - This web site is a creative, interactive site for children at Christmas time. It is online now and will add features as it gets closer to Christmas. This is also the site where children will be able to watch Santa's trip around the world on Christmas Eve. It is a must for children of ALL AGES! It currently is offering Christmas stories, including ones a child can personalize, and... read more 
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The First Christmas Tree, by Henry van Dyke
I. The Call of the Woodsman -- The day before Christmas, in the year of our Lord 722. Broad snow-meadows glistening white along the banks of the river Moselle; steep hill-sides blooming with mystic forget-me-not where the glow of the setting sun cast long shadows down their eastern slope; an arch of clearest, deepest gentian bending overhead; in the centre of the aerial garden... read more 
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Christmas Every Day , by William Dean Howells
The little girl came into her papa's study, as she always did Saturday morning before breakfast, and asked for a story. He tried to beg off that morning, for he was very busy, but she would not let him. So he began: "Well, once there was a little pig--" She put her hand over his mouth and stopped him at the word. She said she had heard little pig-stories till she was perfectly sick of them... read more 
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Yes, Virginia... Editorial of The New York Sun
December 21, 2012 - We take pleasure in answering thus prominently the communication below, expressing at the same time our great gratification that its faithful author is numbered among the friends of The Sun: Dear Editor — I am 8 years old. Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus. Papa says, "If you see it in The Sun, it's so." Please... read more 
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My fondest memory, By Heather Brooks, Edison State Community College Student
Editor Note: Students in an Edison Comp II class were asked to share their fondest memories as part of a weekly writing exercise. This one was especially appropriate as it took a look at human nature, especially at this time of the year. Here is Heather’s submission… “When I was five my aunt and uncle got a divorce, he left her right around the holidays and our family was kind of in an uproar... read more 
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County News Online… It’s that time of the year
It is 21 days until Christmas. This is the time those of faith think about our Creator and the message He sent to us through is Son Jesus. This is the time people of all faiths and leanings think of the season of celebration, thanks and giving to loved ones and those less fortunate. And this is the time when children all over the world dream of beautiful trees with stars and angels and lights... read more 
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Santa’s message to the children of Darke County
As always, Santa couldn’t remember my name, but he remembered the questions many of our children asked him. He sent me this letter and asked me to share it with all the children in Darke County. Bob - Dear John, I’m surprised at you, Helper No. 31278864. Your children asked me questions again this year but you didn’t remind me to answer them. Shame on you!! But you know Santa, ho ho ho! I will answer them... read more 
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To see Santa Facts from the Christmas Tree Market
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Follow Santa on his trip around the world
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Letters to Santa on County News Online
DARKE COUNTY – iPods and iPads topped the list for first and second grade requests from Santa, with the various versions of Xbox a close second, then Monster High toys. Beyond that, however, children around the county showed concern for the less fortunate or family members. A young boy offers to pay Santa $7.61 if he will bring food, and socks for his mom. A student wanted a notebook for his Mom to help her memory... read more 
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TLC Family Christmas… 'The True Story of Santa Claus'
Santa Claus was not always a jolly old fellow. He did not always have long white whiskers, and he did not always wear a big red suit. Long before he lived in the North Pole, and long before his yearly Christmas visits brought joy to all the children of the world, Santa Claus was a child himself. He was once just an ordinary baby boy named Nicholas. The baby boy was just like any other, but his parents hoped for great things from their only... read more 
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Storynory… The Girl Who Missed Christmas
Christmas is the happiest time of year, but sometimes something terrible happens – like a kid misses it all together… Once upon a time, there was a little girl called Natalie. Natalie was six. She lived in a nice house, on a nice street. She had a little brother called Joe, and dog called Marmalade. And most of the time Natalie was happy. She played with her friends. She played with her dog. Sometimes she even played with Joe – when he wasn’t... read more 
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Storynory… The First Christmas
Mary was sitting in the sun outside her house. it was a normal day, a bit of cooking, a bit of helping around the house. She was having a few minutes rest, when suddenly an angel appeared. “Are you Mary?”, he asked. “Yes, who are you?”, the startled girl replied. “I’m an angel from God”, and I have a surprise for you. You’re going to have a baby.” Mary raised her hand to her mouth. “It would be a surprise, I’m not even... read more 
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The Year the Reindeer Couldn't Fly, By Daniel 'Chip' Ciammaichella
The storm had blown in quickly from the north that Christmas Eve, turning the rolling grasslands south of Raton into an endless blanket of white. The snow and ice had transformed the pinon, cedar and oak-brush into fine crystal sculptures, and the majestic peaks of the Sangre de Cristos were obliterated from view by the fusillade of snowflakes, driven by a biting north wind in the dim late afternoon light. As Elizabeth Porter eased her... read more 
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A Kidnapped Santa Claus, by L. Frank Baum
Santa Claus lives in the Laughing Valley, where stands the big, rambling castle in which his toys are manufactured. His workmen, selected from the ryls, knooks, pixies and fairies, live with him, and every one is as busy as can be from one year's end to another. It is called the Laughing Valley because everything there is happy and gay. The brook chuckles to itself as it leaps rollicking between its green banks; the wind whistles merrily in the trees; the ... read more 
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A Cop's Christmas, An Original Christmas Story by Chip Ciammaichella
It was just after 11 p.m. when the call came over the radio. The reflection of the city lights made the falling snow look like a million points of light, drifting slowly toward the frozen ground. The cop debated with himself whether he should respond to the call; a burglar alarm at a nearby department store. His shift change was less than an hour away, if someone indeed had broken into the... read more 
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TLC Family “Christmas Stories”… 'Twas the Night Before Christmas
No set of Christmas stories would be complete without the famous ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas… ’Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house, not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse. The stockings were hung by the chimney with care, in hopes that Saint Nicholas soon would be there. The children were nestled all snug in their beds, while visions of sugarplums danced in their heads... read more 
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Commissioner Mike Stegall… Merry Christmas
“And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flocks by night.  And, lo, the Angel of the Lord came upon them and the Glory of the Lord shone about them; and they were sore afraid. And the angel said to them… ‘Fear not:  for behold I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people, for unto you is born today in the City of David a Savior, which is Christ... read more 
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Darke County Senior Scribe… The Angel Smiled, By Lois Wilson
Three thoughts on Christmas by Darke County Senior Scribes Poet Laureate Lois Wilson. A STAR IS BORN? In this year’s Christmas play, While sitting in a sleigh, The children sang a song, That went a wee bit wrong. Its planned end was, “Ho! Ho!” But Stevie stole the show, Ad-libbing, ”Ho! Ho! Ho!  Ho! Ho!   Ho! Ho! Ho! Ho! Ho!” He explained, his eyes aglow, “I was singing a solo!”  SANTA’S AD - Needed one reindeer To... read more 
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Christmas Day in the Morning, By Pearl S. Buck
He woke suddenly and completely. It was four o’clock, the hour at which his father had always called him to get up and help with the milking. Strange how the habits of his youth clung to him still! Fifty years ago, and his father had been dead for thirty years, and yet he waked at four o’clock in the morning. He had trained himself to turn over and go to sleep, but this morning it was Christmas, he did not try to sleep. Why did he feel so awake... read more 
Letters to Santa... Dear Santa,
This year, I'd like a fat bank account and a slim body. Please don't mix up the 2 like you did last year!!
You know who
Greenville, Ohio  
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Letters to Santa… Santa visits Mississinawa Valley Preschool, By Elaine Bailey
“My dog bites,” Gentry cautioned Santa. “That’s a good thing to know,” he chuckled. “I’ll watch out for him when I come to your house on Christmas Eve.” Santa left the North Pole under the careful supervision of Mrs. Claus to personally respond to written questions and requests posed by the three, four and five-year-olds attending Mississinawa Valley Preschool. Director and teacher Maria Kinninger encouraged the youngsters... read more 
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Dear Boys & Girls,
Ho ho ho. So you want to know my secrets, do you? Usually I don’t tell anyone my secrets. That’s why they are called secrets. But you said that I’m real and that you like me… you even sign your letters with ‘love.’ How can I resist that? So you have to promise – pinky promise – not to tell anyone. Okay? Ho ho ho. First of all, Keeno is not one of my reindeer. He tried out, but he was... read more 
Letters to Santa... Dear Santa,
This is Bob again. No, not Ronald. My name is Bob. Remember? From the Advocate a few years ago? I’m the editor of County News Online now and a Santa’s Helper (No. 31278664). I just posted more letters to you, this time from Mrs. Buschur’s class here in Greenville, Ohio. And guess what? Yep. You guessed it. They have a bunch of questions for you! I know, it might take a day or two, but they really would appreciate it if you answered some of their questions. Frankly? I’d kind of like to know, too. Like... read more 
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Letters to Santa… Mrs. Buschur’s class asks tough questions
This is a fascinating list of Letters to Santa. They came from Mrs. Buschur’s first grade class at Woodland Heights. The students asked more questions about Santa, his reindeer and his life than I think they did asking for toys and gifts. It’s obvious that they love him… one picture is especially for Santa: they were waving “hi” to him! More interesting is that the children would love to hear back from him. This presents a challenge to... read more 
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Yes, Virginia, There is a Santa Claus
New York Sun Editorial - Sept. 21, 1897 - Eight-year-old Virginia O'Hanlon wrote a letter to the editor of New York's Sun, and the quick response was printed as an unsigned editorial Sept. 21, 1897. The work of veteran newsman Francis Pharcellus Church has since become history's most reprinted newspaper editorial, appearing in part or whole in dozens of languages in books, movies, and other editorials, and on posters and stamps... read more 
Letters to Santa...Letters from Woodland Heights students
December 13, 2012 - Dear Santa, I want a stuffed kitten is my first (wish) and 6 pencits and books about flowers. Santa can bring (gifts to?) people. Santa is coming to tawn. Jennifer  --- Dear Santa, I want a sweater because mine has a hole in it. I will take care of (it). I was good all year. Love, Emma --- Dear Santa, I really need dresses. I also wunt an I.Pod. I will read Christmas books. Happy Christmas, Keira --- Dear Santa, I really want a stuffed cat. I need a sweater to keep me warm. A cat in the Hat... read more 
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Letters to Santa... Students write letters, make Christmas Decorations, By Bob Robinson
Senior Scribe Sharon Hopper, see When Children Were Children, talks about making decorations for the traditional Christmas tree. A few days ago, some of the children in Mrs. Black’s class at Woodland Heights were doing exactly that… making homemade decorations for their trees. I remember those red and green “chains” from my childhood. We would make them in school and each of us would take them home for our trees. It’s wonderful... read more 
Thank you, Santa
This is just a brief note to thank Santa for what he does for our children. Mrs. Ruhenkamp’s children worked very hard on their Letters to Santa this year and they were hoping that Santa would see them and answer them. He did! I was working on the next batch of letters when I got a Google notice that there was an email from Santa. I went to my inbox and there it was… a Thank You letter from Santa, sent directly to Mrs. Ruhenkamp’s class. Thank you, Santa. There are many children... read more 
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Wreaths Across America, From a CNO reader
Recently, 25 tractor trailers left Harrington, Maine loaded with wreaths to be placed on graves at Arlington National Cemetery. Hundreds of motorcycles and a police escort in various states led the convoy. The tradition began in 1992 when the Worcester Wreath Company found themselves with a surplus nearing the end of the Christmas season. They donated the wreaths to Arlington. A photo... read more 
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Letters to Santa… Mrs. Ruhenkamp's First Grade Class, Woodland Heights, From Bob Robinson
“We worked really hard on the letters.  They look great.” They did. Mrs. Ruhenkamp incorporated the assignment into the writing exercises that she regularly uses as part of her first grade grammar curriculum. First they did a draft, then they put it on a nice sheet with Santa art on it and pasted it onto a red background. Some are already on display in the hallway outside the room. Some of the letters below were indecipherable by yours... read more 
Santa and Sarah, Author unknown, submitted by Wavelene Denniston
Three years ago, a little boy and his grandmother came to see Santa at the McAllister Mall in Saint John, Nfld. The child climbed up on his lap, holding a picture of a little girl. “Who is this?" asked Santa, smiling. "Your friend? "Yes, Santa,' he replied. "My sister, Sarah, who is very sick," he said sadly. Santa glanced over at the grandmother who was waiting nearby, and saw her dabbing her eyes with a tissue. "She wanted to come with me to see you, oh, so very much, Santa!" the child exclaimed. "She... read more
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First Graders “Working Hard” on their letters, By Bob Robinson
With a poem by Lois Wilson - County News Online’s Letters to Santa (and More) seems to be a hit. We’ve had lots of reader interest in a heart-warming story by Senior Scribe Phyllis Mong, the Eagles Kids Christmas Party and a surprise submission to me… a Letter to Santa from a GHS Senior, Michelle Chen. On Sunday we posted our first letter from a young lady named Lexi. At Woodland... read more 
Dear Santa Claus,
My name is Lexi. I am 4 years old. I have been a good girl this year. I want a Barbie doll, kitchen set, a baby doll, pretty clothes, leapster games, tinkerbell costume and I want snow! And Frosty the Snowman!
Love, Lexi
PS I want you to come to my house for my birthday! 
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A Santa in our Hearts, By Phyllis Mong, Senior Scribe
At Christmastime, many years ago - during 1973-1974 – Santa was called to visit many towns. Lo and behold, Santa was called to a small town in Ohio. It was Greenville and he was asked to be in the Holiday parade. So, Santa got his bright red suit, black boots all spruced up and bells sparkling. He had his beard brushed and combed out. He was looking good to meet all the children and parents which lined the downtown sidewalks by the hundreds... read more 
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Annual Eagles Kids Christmas… Greenville Eagles treats kids to Santa visit, By Bob Robinson
“Are you here to see Santa?” Vigorous nod. “Were you good?” Sometimes the nodding continued. Sometimes there was a hesitant nod. Sometimes a parent popped up… “That could be debated…” One child said “No.” Mom agreed. “Do you think Santa is going to visit you since you weren’t good?” “Yes!” “What’s he going to leave you? A lump of coal?” “Toys!!!” Dad said, “We’ll see.” He grinned when he said it. Some kids loved to have... read more 
Dear Mr. Robinson,
Thank you for taking our pictures.  We appreciate it.  We are working very hard on them (the letters).  We were very excited to see our pictures on the internet. Love, Mrs. Ruhenkamp's Class (scripted by the class:)). 
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Union City Harter Park… See Santa & Mrs. Claus; Holiday Light Display at its Best Ever
Several visitors proclaim that this year’s holiday light display is the best ever.  It is believed that Santa took an extra break from his busy schedule at the North Pole to drive through the festive Union City Harter Park this past Sunday evening.  Allowing his reindeer to rest for the BIG night, he made the trip in a car, one of 83 vehicles that cruised through the lighted wonderland.  One visitor traveled from Ludlow Falls to see the Union City… read more
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Letters to Santa… From the Coolest Kid Ever
Dear Santa, Usually, I just visit you at the mall every year to tell you what I want, but that doesn’t really seem to work because I’ve never gotten anything for Christmas! So, I decided that this year, I was going to attempt to communicate with you via snail mail…or a traditional letter. Well Santa, before I tell you what I want and everything, I just want to let you know that you can’t pull that silly, “you’ve been a bad… read more
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Letters to Santa… Let the fun begin, By Bob Robinson
During my tenure at The Advocate, one of the most “fun” things I got to oversee was the annual Letters to Santa Claus. Kids can really be a hoot, especially when it comes to their thoughts about Christmas and Santa Claus and being good and everything. No one likes to think of that “lump of coal” that is reserved for the kids who have not been so good all year. Last year, County News Online went “live” in... read more 
Mail your letters to Santa's Helper, County News Online, PO Box 1113, Greenville, OH 45331
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