Thursday, December 30, 2010

"Thank You" Isn't Enough - A Secret Santa Story

I wish to share someting special with you and hope that you don't mind doing a little reading with this post.

Some of our readers are Calgarian crafters that have taken many of my classes at Scrapbookers Paradise for a year now, and know that I have been unemployed since November 2009. I have only earned a little here and there by teaching classes for the past year. The church I attend also knows of this life challenge that has been mine, and have taken good care of me. There are many wonderful people in our congregation, and this Christmas one of the families chose to be 'Secret Santa' to me. They had someone else drop off a large bag of gifts, a couple of days before Christmas, so I wouldn't know who they were.

After they were dropped off, I took each gift out, and found there where four of them, two large, one medium, and one small. I placed them under my beautiful white tree with silver and a variety of blue ornaments, because I wanted to wait to open them. I wanted to enjoy my Christmas. Two of the packages were wrapped in the gold foil paper and red gold embossed ribbon of Estee Lauder! The other two, the largest and smallest were wrapped in traditional Christmas paper. Each gift had great Christmas tags (no pics of them sorry).

Now, because I was raised with some of the wonderful German Christmas traditions, one of which is opening all the gifts Christmas Eve after a fantastic feast, I decided to open two gifts Christmas Eve and two on Christmas Day. This is the tradition that I started when raising my family. Everything from my side of the family was opened Christmas Eve, and everything from their dad's side was opened Christmas Day. This really made Christmas last longer in our household, and I loved it. Of course, so did the children.

Anyway, let's get back to my Secret Santa gifts. Christmas Eve I opened the smaller of the Estee Lauder wrapped boxes and found a gift set of 'Sensuous' scent and lotion. That was a "wow" for me! The other was the largest gift that held the surprise of a blue/purple top. It was one of those one piece tops that looked like two pieces. It's a beautiful color and I really like the top. But, that's not all that was in the box. There was a beautiful silver satin drawstring bag that held a gift card to the same store that the top was purchased from so that I could buy more clothing! Generous, right? Wait till you read about the other gifts!

Christmas morning, I opened the small personally wrapped gift first. As I lifted the lid to the box, you'll never guess what I found inside! When I saw it, I quickly put the lid back on the box, because I could scarcely believe what I saw! I then slowly opened the box again as my eyes began to water a little, though not quite to tears yet. Inside were three $100 bills with several gift cards. Included, a $100 Safeway card, $100 Shoppers Drug Mart card, and a gas gift card! Talk about generosity!! Behind that generosity is thoughtfulness, caring, and the true spirit of Christmas and giving.

The last of the gifts was the larger Estee Lauder wrapped box. In it was a large travel bathroom/makeup bag with a very large box with eye shadows of every color, a smaller box with 4 blushes, 5 lipsticks, makeup remover, 3 pencil eye-liners, a set of brushes, a flat travel mirror, and a smaller makeup bag.

So I ask you, who would spend somewhere around $700 to $800 on Christmas gifts for someone who isn't a member of their family? It humbled me to be the recipient of such heartfelt and thoughtful charity. A very special family did this for me! So I just had to make my Secret Santa a Thank You card. It doesn't seem to be enough to just give them a card when they gave me so very much, but I had to do something.

It turned out to be a little bit of a challenge to make this, as I'm moving at the end of January and have a lot of my craft things packed away already. Dana used to have all her crafting things at my place but has recently moved her craft things back to her home. I used her Cuttlebug nearly every time I make a card. So what to do this time? I really miss access to it. But this is what I came up with for this special generous family, and my Secret Santa.

I still have my kraft paper, my scraps that I still need to sort through before moving, my inks, my stamps, and my border punches. On the paper pierced/faux stitched piece I stamped the background with Versa Mark and clear heat embossed it. I ink distressed the edges with Versa Magic Purple Hydrangea, and used the same ink and clear embossing powder for the sentiment. The sentiment is a combination of Inkadinkado Thank You Words set and The Stamps of Life Thanks 2 You #7 set. I used Martha Stewart's Deco Fan border punch on the scrap of purple patterned paper.

So there you have a very special Christmas "Secret Santa" story and the reason behind this card.



Lynn said...

Sabrina, thank you for sharing. A very beautiful blessing.

Ted said...

Sabrina, this is a wonderful story. Just goes to show you how God works through His people. :)