With the holiday season just around the corner Detective Charlie Chan and family are trying to get ahead of the game. And with eleven children in the Chan household I asked him, “How do the Chans get through the holiday with so many young hearts to please?” Here is what he told me:
“Ah, best happiness comes not from gifts so much, but from simple things. Honorable wife and I practice long time tradition of Western world. Sit with anxious offspring and write letter to ancient elf, Santa Claus.”C. Chan
How about it? For a moment throw aside the constant bombardment of political infighting, gun violence, war abroad, family problems, or whatever else is dominating the negative part of your life. Forget you won’t be able to get everyone the “perfect gift” this year. Cast aside the fretting “Who should get invited to holiday dinners?” “Who should come to the party?” or (love this one) “Which side of the family will you visit first on Christmas day?” Tell Santa! He understands; and you know he sees you when your sleeping and awake.
So for those of you who believe—especially those with children–here is what the elves at North Pole, Alaska say about receiving a letter postmarked from Santa’s hometown:
- Have the child write a letter to Santa and place it in an envelope addressed to: Santa Claus, North Pole. Then…
- You write a personalized response to the child’s letter and sign it “From Santa.”
- Insert both letters into an envelope, and address it to the child.
- Add the return address: SANTA, NORTH POLE, to the envelope.
- Ensure a First-Class Mail stamp is affixed to the envelope.
- Place the complete envelope into a larger envelope, and address and mail it to:
- NORTH POLE POSTMARK
- 4141 POSTMARK DR
- ANCHORAGE AK 99530-9998
They recommend sending your letters by December 10th. Santa’s helpers in Anchorage, AK, will take care of the rest! Find more tips from the U.S. Postal Service here: How to get a letter postmarked from the North Pole
Now, if you are really in the spirit this year (and can afford it) try participating in USPS Operation Santa by adopting a letter sent to Santa and returning a gift or gifts: https://www.uspsoperationsanta.com/ (adopting letters begins November 28th.)
Reciprocally, should you or your children be in need this year you’ll find instructions on how to participate at writing a letter to Santa. (Note: there is no guarantee all letters will be answered as this is a volunteer public program. However, in 2021 over 24,000 letters were adopted and 21,000 packages sent!) Mail no later than December 12 to:
123 Elf Road
North Pole, 88888
Finally, speaking of letters I’ll leave you with one you may have seen before. It’s a letter to the editor of New York’s The Sun Newspaper from eight year old Virgina O’Banlon. It was answered by The Sun‘s veteran newsman Francis Pharcellus Church:
“You can’t help getting older, but you don’t have to get old.”George Burns, Entertainer