I guess I had better get to using this blog. Santa Rielly has made it available and I signed in so I'll try to use it as much as I can.
First of all the ClausNET site is one of education and social and I appreciate the work and effort that goes into a development such as this. It's not always easy. So first of all Santa Rielly, my thanks for taking this on and for standing up for the site.
You gotta stand for something or you'll fall for anything. I also appreciate the fact that this site is nonheirarchal and that no one takes the role of a chairman, president or the like. I acknowledge this is Santa Rielly's site put here for the use of all Santas and that he is the "owner" and makes the rules and I suggest according to also the wishes of those who use it.
I also see from various posts that there are some Santa's here who have it rough in life. I see that due to circumstances some have health and financial problems. Others have had situations with family. I thought of myself, having two knee replacements coming up as something of a setback. but as someone once said, no matter how bad you think you have it, there is always someone worse off than you. It is evident here and I am glad that we can all pray and encourage each other in these various upsets.
I'd like to get to know you all a bit better and I guess if I post enough and you post enough we'll learn something about each other. I appreciate the words of welcome and kindness and help from so many. I also feel a genuine interest from people like Chris and Father David who have a seminary or theological background. I'd even encourage one of them to think about maybe becoming a chaplain for the forum. It's tough enough being a pastor without having to take this on but I feel that those who need it, may be encouraged by simple e-mail not public posts like here, to someone with a sympathetic ear and the way to handle situations. It could be shared duty as well. Like I said, private not public but someone to turn to.
I am the grandfather of 4, 3 shes and a he. My son and his family live in Finland so that is like a universe away. It's not like you can hop in the car and drive out for a visit, and believe me, there are no seat sales from Canada to Helsinki. It's not your typical tourist destination. That said, those on this forum would have an interest in the Santa Claus Village at the Arctic Circle in Rovanemi. I've been there once and would certainly go back again. We talk about a belief in Santa Claus and boy is it evident there on a year round basis.
I became interested in Santa Claus probably through that experience. I had to write two thesis on the conclusion of my Economic Development courses and I used the idea of transforming a town into a Christmas town in the first phase and then adding a theme park to the town. Not an abundance of that in Alberta. My profs were good enough to score me high on them but when I made the presentation locally, I was kind of scoffed at. Long time merchants involved in their own business and not having the best interest of the town as a whole. Small downtowns in too many centres are being lost to mega-developments and the WalMarts and Canadian Tires and Staples and Office Depots and Future Shops and Best Buy and on and on. The time will come when they say to themselves, "we got to do something". By then it may be too late. Life moves ahead very quickly these days.
Anyway, the spark never died and this past year after I lost my position to the president elect of my board, I found the time to don a rack suit and cheap wig and beard set and bring some happiness to some kids. (It had to be a rack job as it is hard for a 59 year old to get meaningful employment other than a Walmart greeter, and with the surgeries coming up, no one is willing to hire and train and then lose you for a few months.) It also made me feel good as I mentioned my own grandkids are not anywhere handy to sit on my knee and tell me all sorts of things. Maybe that helped in the feeling of satisfaction I received while being Santa. I got hooked. My office is now full of pictures from websites, tips on suit care, wig styling, beard cleaning behaviour and I even printed out the last 4 years of the Kringle Chronicle and bound them so that I woud have them on hand for reference. I bought real boots and belt because I don't like the "tops" and the suit was backed up with another one purchased after the season at 50% off. My sister from Denver also is sending me one she found as a birthday present to me. She knows my interest and supports my venture.
So there you have a short bit about me. I didn't think Santa Carlo sounded right so I used Santa Edson as that is the town I'll be mainly working in. After 12 years on the radio, and 15 years as an elected councillor for the town, I guess I'm sort of a "Mister Edson" so the title fits. I still write a Southern Gospel music column for the local paper, but that is because I've been involved in it for the last 15 years and it's my "ministry"
I'll try to keep in touch with this blog and with posts on the site and my mailbox is never too full, so if you really want...
Box 20002 Edson, AB. Canada T7E 1B4
God bless each and every one of you for your chosen activity in bringing smiles to the young and the young at heart.