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Christmas for the homeless: Santa, Elves and a winter wonderland in Houston surprise shelter moms and kids

Christmas for the homeless: Santa, Elves and a winter wonderland

News, shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Santa, elves and Michael McNair
Taking a merry Christmas to Mission of Yahweh Santa's elves with Santa (Brian Hartland), Mrs. Claus (Adele Hartland) and young Michael McNair on Santa's lap. © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Monica Hartland Blaisdell, John Blaisdell
Christmas on a Misson organizers Monica and John Blaisdell. © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Joan Hartland, Charlie Hartland, Charles Hartland
Joan Hartland, from left, Charlie Hartland and Charles Hartland help distribute gifts to residents of the homeless shelter.  © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Adele Hartland, Warner Roberts, Santa, Angie Roberts
Adele hartland, from left, Warner Roberts, Santa and Angie Roberts. © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014,Uchenna Agu, JD Fishback, Dezmond Fishback, Ned Tumbull
Uchenna Agu, from left, JD Fishback, Dezmond Fishback and Ned Tumbull. © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Joanna Marks, Brad Marks
Joanna and Brad Marks. © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Rpbert McNair, Santa
Santa poses with young Robert McNair. © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Tiffany Martin, Martin Wild
Tiffany Martin and Martin Wild.  © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Amber Hartland, Jordan Boni, Allison Boni
Amber Hartland, from left, Jordan Boni and Allison Boni help distribute gifts. © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Audrey Cochran, Brandon Cochran, David Kennedy
Audrey and Brandon Cochran, left, with David Kennedy. © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Erich Ploog, Ben Johnston, Sarah Hartland
Erich Ploog, Ben Johnston with Sarah Hartland. © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Monsour Taghdisi, Cameron Taghdisi
Monsour Taghdisi with son Cameron. © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Robert Ochoa, Alex Ochoa with kids Joaquin, Jimena, Juliana
Robert and Alexandra Ochoa with their children, Joaquin, Jimena and Juliana. Joaquin, Jimena & Juliana
News, shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Santa (Bryan Hartland), Michael McNair
Santa and Michael McNair. © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Bethany Hartland
Bethany Hartland.  © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Kay Kay Blaisdell, John Blaisdell, Megan Blaisdell
© Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Michelle Betts, J.P. Betts
J.P.  and Michelle Betts. © Michelle Watson/CultureMap
News, shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Santa, elves and Michael McNair
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Monica Hartland Blaisdell, John Blaisdell
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Joan Hartland, Charlie Hartland, Charles Hartland
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Adele Hartland, Warner Roberts, Santa, Angie Roberts
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014,Uchenna Agu, JD Fishback, Dezmond Fishback, Ned Tumbull
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Joanna Marks, Brad Marks
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Rpbert McNair, Santa
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Tiffany Martin, Martin Wild
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Amber Hartland, Jordan Boni, Allison Boni
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Audrey Cochran, Brandon Cochran, David Kennedy
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Erich Ploog, Ben Johnston, Sarah Hartland
News, shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Monsour Taghdisi, Cameron Taghdisi
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Robert Ochoa, Alex Ochoa with kids Joaquin, Jimena, Juliana
News, shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Santa (Bryan Hartland), Michael McNair
News, shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Bethany Hartland
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Kay Kay Blaisdell, John Blaisdell, Megan Blaisdell
News, Shelby, Mission of Yahweh, Dec. 2014, Michelle Betts, J.P. Betts

Houston's chilly Christmas morning turned into a snowy delight in one small corner of the city when the 150 mothers and children at the modest Mission of Yahweh homeless shelter were treated to the holiday celebration of a lifetime.

It was a most generous gift — "Christmas on a Mission" — that Monica Hartland Blaisdell and John Blaisdell launched six years ago to bring special joy to the unfortunates who would otherwise be on the streets.

By 8:30 Christmas morning the mission campus had been transformed into a winter wonderland complete with snow (and the requisite snowball fights) and the arrival of  Santa and Mrs. Claus along with a posse of elves. There were games, face painting, a 25-foot slide and a Christmas DJ. Christmas cookies and hot chocolate for everyone!

Mission volunteers presented carry-on bags, filled with much-needed personal items, to each mom while the youngsters received toys requested in their letters to Santa.

Joining the Blaisdells as lead elves were Bethany Hartland, Julie Pitts, Megan Blaisdell, Ginnell Marshall and Paul-David Van Atta.

Sharing this true spirit of Christmas adventure were volunteers, many accompanied by their children, including Joanna and Brad Marks, Samantha and David Kennedy, Hannah and Cal McNair, Janelle and Greg Reid, Warner Roberts, Charlie Hartland, Angie Roberts, Ben Johnston and Erich Ploog, Christine Kirchner, Brian Hartland, Adele Hartland and Monsour Taghdisi and Henry Richardson.

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