Happy Christmas to all, especially our children | RecordCourier.com

Happy Christmas to all, especially our children

by Karel Ancona-Henry, People editor

December arrived with bells on and I am reminded how much beauty there is, how much the season is for and about children (no matter the age) and that for some, things aren’t so easy.

I’ve been blessed with two little ones who are growing into independent, caring human beings, who sometimes grow horns and turn green.

We recently added Steve to our family and he’s maneuvering his way through Girl World with an ease that most of his cohorts can’t quite believe or understand.

For example, Emily and Natalie danced at Piper’s Opera House in Virginia City recently.

As we pulled up to the theater, Natalie, with fear in her big, violet-blue eyes said, “Mommy, I forgot my ballet slippers.”

Six words that transformed the outing from Peaceful, Fun Time to Day of Awful Family Trauma.

I was thinking of all the hard work and how she would feel if she couldn’t perform. Steve, while driving back home to get her shoes was beyond bewildered and not less than a little annoyed (he had, after all, asked Natalie two seconds before she got in the truck if her shoes were in her bag).

Emily was trying to maintain some semblance of calm and Natalie was clearly upset.

Steve arrived, little pink shoes in hand, two minutes before she had to go on. His actions tell me a lot about the man he is. Steve however, seems to think the significance will be lost on the girls.

Somehow, and especially as they get older, I don’t think it will be.

And still there are others who remind me that my life is in many ways uneventful.

Remember Haley Vana, now 5, who is still having a hard time. She’s been weaning off the steroids and has experienced some growth in the inoperable tumor that has been part of her life almost three years now. Her mom, Linn, could use our ongoing support as the medical bills continue. Donations can be made in the form of cash (checks or money orders are welcome, too) or by purchasing raffle tickets for two Renee Eckleberry limited edition prints at La Dolce Vita, 1561 Highway 395, Gardnerville, (775) 782-8070. Ask for Franchesca.

Justin Stegemann, the son of Dave and Wendy Stegemann, and a student at Pau-Wa-Lu Middle School, has been undergoing treatment for adult neuroblastoma, a severe form of spinal cancer.

An account for Justin is at Bank of America. Deposits can be made at any branch, to account number 004965744216; dropped off with Jim Valentine at 1320 Highway 395, or mailed to Friends of Justin Stegemann, P.O. Box 806, Gardnerville, 89410.

These families, like so many others, need our help. This is a great time of year to remember our own blessings while remembering others.

To follow up. We will publish our annual Letters to Santa Wednesday, Dec. 24. It’s a section filled with whimsy, silliness, thoughtfulness and a few ‘I wants.’

But not everything is peaches and roses. I received this letter via e-mail, early on. And while it’s not appropriate content for the Letters section, I felt that it should be acknowledged. It is a sharp reminder of how lucky I am to have daughters who try my patience, wake me at 3 a.m. and slip their pudgy little hands into mine while whispering that they love me.

God bless everyone during this season of peace.

Dear Santa,

First off, I’d like to thank you for the best Christmas present you could give any child — my parents, brother and sisters, dog, and bunny. I love them all so much.

What I’d like to ask for Christmas may be too difficult to give. You see, I went to Heaven to be with God and Jesus this February. I would have been 4 1/2 years old on Valentine’s Day. I miss my family very much, and I know they miss me. They come and visit me every day, and I try to show them that I’m OK here in Heaven and having a really neat time. I’m playing with all the other kids and animals (especially the Mammoths) that are here, and I’m with family that weren’t around while I was here.

If you could, Santa, would you please give them all a big hug for me?? It isn’t much, yet I remember how good it felt to be in all of their arms. I never felt so loved as when they were holding me close. I hope a hug from you will help their hurting hearts. Thank you, Santa, for helping me.

Alaina Sage Lester

(This letter was written by Alaina’s daddy, Shawn, as a reminder of what really matters in the world today Ð our children).

– People Editor Karel Ancona-Henry will be out of the office until Jan. 5 enjoying time with her family. Merry Christmas and a peace-filled New Year to everyone.