About the Author
Mark Victor Hansen is a co-founder of Chicken Soup for the Soul.
Hometown:Santa Barbara, California
Date of Birth:August 19, 1944
Place of Birth:Fort Worth, Texas
Education:B.A. in History, Harvard University, 1966; M.A.T. Program, University of Chicago, 1968; M.Ed., U. of Massachusetts, 1973
Read an Excerpt
With Gladness and Glue
While Christmas shopping in a jewelry store, I discovered
a clearance table of gilded ornaments. Detailed and
delicate in design, each had a personality all its own. I
sorted among the hundreds of filigreed masterpieces,
picked out a few and took them home.
Deciding they were much too pretty to disappear
among the clutter of a Christmas tree, I used them instead
to decorate small eight-inch wreaths. When I stood back to
admire my handiwork, a thought crossed my mind:
Wouldn’t some of our family and friends like these, too?
I raced back to the jewelry store to discover that the
stack of ornaments had been reduced even further. This
time I bought dozens as I thought of the many people
who might enjoy one for the holidays.
Armed with a glue gun and bright ribbons of every
color, I eagerly began my creative project. The wreaths
multiplied like measles and dotted every flat surface in our
house. For days, my family tiptoed around, elbowed their
way through and slept among the miniature masterpieces.
While I tied dainty bows and glued golden ornaments,
my mind wandered to Christmases past, and I pondered
how special each had been. I thought about others perhaps
not so fortunate. Some people in our community
didn’t have a family to share the joy of Christmas. Some
didn’t bother with holiday decorations. Some never left
their homes to celebrate the season.
I nodded my head in determined satisfaction. They
would be at the top of my list to receive a little wreath. My
husband joined me in the plan, andwe set out together to
put it into action.
We visited the aged. We visited the widowed. We visited
the lonely. Each one was thrilled with our cheery stops
and immediately hung our small gifts—often the only
signs of celebration in their homes.
After several days, I realized we had made and given
almost two hundred wreaths. Decorated with love and
delivered with delight, they filled many homes and hearts
with the joy of Christmas.
And I came to the simple realization that we were actually
the ones who received the greatest blessing that year.
We had found our Christmas spirit in the doing.
-Nancy B. Gibbs
©2005. All rights reserved. Reprinted from Chicken Soup for the Soul Book of Christmas Virtues by Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen with Carole Rehme. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form or by any means, without the written permission of the publisher. Publisher: Health Communications, Inc., 3201 SW 15th Street, Deerfield Beach, FL 33442.