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Stories of Christmas 2nd place-kids


Age 9


I’ve always wanted to be a detective, you know like the ones you would find in books. But lately I haven’t had any time to go to the library.The Great Depression has hit Brainerd, Minnesota. My parents are too afraid that I will lose my book and have to pay a bill. My family struggles and Christmas is coming. But Christmas isn’t about gifts. It is about Jesus’ birth.

I’m Ashlen Benz, a bored 9-year-old Ashlen Benz that is. I decided that I wanted to play with my spy gear “Who should I spy on?” I asked my cat Sparkle. “Purrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr” Sparkle responded. “How about dad?”

When I got down to the living room I saw my dad talking to a man. The man looked very familiar. It was the man from the bank. Their conversation was muffled but I could hear some.

“Your house” … the man was saying … “will be taken away by the bank” … I leaned in to hear more … “a week from today”. Oh no! I have to do something. Now! My thoughts ran through my mind as I went up to my bedroom. It took me about an hour before I could figure it out but I finally did. When it hit me it was like a rocket that just shot up like a space shuttle.

I could go to the bank later today and try to make them change their mind. Try was the key word there. There was no guarantee though. It was very hard to get out of the house. I didn’t want my parents to know so I lied to them and said it was something for school. Luckily they let me.

My long curls blew behind me as I ran to the bank. This plan just has to work. With only one week until Christmas Eve I really had to hurry. After about 10 minutes I arrived at the bank. A warm breeze flew at me as I opened the door to the bank. “Hello Ashlen. What brings you here?” A lady from the bank welcomed me.

“I have to talk to you about something,” I explained.

“Go on” said the lady.

“Earlier today I was spying on my dad. I found out that our house will be taken away on Christmas Eve.”

“You’re from the Benz family right?” asked the bank lady.

“Yes. I was thinking that I could help out at the bank.” As the bank lady was thinking I played with my fingers worryingly.

“Ashlen that would be wonderful. You can do it for three weeks after Christmas.” I was excited and said “Thank you so much!”

The next week went by fast. I had the perfect gift for my parents. On Christmas I gave them my gift. My gift was that our house would not be taken away. My parents were surprised. I told them the whole story. It was truly a Christmas miracle.

Denton (Denny) Newman Jr.
I've worked at the Brainerd Dispatch with various duties since Dec. 7, 1983. Starting off as an Ad Designer and currently Director of Audience Development. The Dispatch has been an interesting and challenging place to work. I'm fortunate to have made many friends, both co-workers and customers.
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