Christmas time is the season when people feel inspired to help others by offering up random acts of kindness. Heck, even the Grinch’s heart grew during Christmas. Some of these are big acts that involve hundreds of people and some are as simple as a child gathering some toys, but they all remind us that at Christmas time people can be pretty wonderful. So if you need help getting in the spirit, these stories of strangers being awesome should do the trick!

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18 Heartwarming Christmas Stories

#1: Young Boy Gives Away Favorite Toys

One mom from Fort Worth, TX has been teaching her boys about giving gifts to those in need during Advent. This past week, she and her three boys went on their annual nursing home trip to sing holiday carols to the elderly residents. Before leaving, her oldest son threw a huge “bag o’joyful swag” into the car. When they arrived at the nursing home, he began to dole out his favorite gifts to the residents. Click here for the mom’s full blog post (pictures included).

#2: The Grinch is Arrested

After watching Dr. Seuss’ How the Grinch Stole Christmas, young TyLon Pittman was convinced that the Grinch was going to steal Christmas gifts from him and other young children. He was so convinced, in fact, that he called 9-1-1 to help. Because Pittman was so insistent, the local Byram, MS Police Department faked an arrest of the Grinch. Now, sweet TyLon can rest easy. Click here for the full story.

#3: Come On In

One cold, December day, Dave and Fran Nance were driving with their daughters when they came upon a young mother with seven children standing on the side of the street. Dave stopped and asked the mom if they needed any help, the mom replied that they needed a few things from the store but had run out of money. Dave and Fran decided to take them to the store, and while shopping with the mother, they ended up inviting them over for Christmas dinner. That year, the struggling family of eight enjoyed warm baths, Christmas dinner, and gifts with the Nance family.

#4: Christmas Cash Giveaway from Father Woody

It started in 1982 when a Denver area priest, Father Woody, invited the homeless to shelter in his Parish during a harsh storm. Today, that spirit is remembered each year when priests from his Cathedral give away cash to the poor and homeless. Each person who comes to the Father Woody Christmas event receives two $10 bills. One bill for themselves and one to give away if they should want to pass on the holiday spirit. To read the full story, click here.

#5: Blankets for Texas

When one first grade student in Edinburg, Texas asked for blankets, food, and balls for her brothers, people around the world delivered in a big way. Her teacher posted Crystal Pancheo’s sweet letter on social media, and a few days later Monte Cristo Elementary was inundated with boxes of blankets, and even some balls too. For pictures of Crystal with her letter to Santa, click here.

#6: Big Tips in Washington

The staff at Brief Encounter restaurant was floored when they received a $3,000 tip and a kind note from a regular patron. This customer from Bellevue, Washington shared shared that his mom had worked in a diner like the very one he often frequented, and he just wanted to do something to give back. For the full story, click here.

#7: Creative Couponing for Christmas Goodies

Jordon Cox loves to coupon. He decided to use his skills to help families who might not be able to afford groceries for Christmas. He spent hours searching the internet for the best coupons, used the coupons to obtain the Christmas food items, and then delivered the food to a local charity. All told he obtained about $800 worth of groceries and spent six cents. If you want to read the full story, click here.

#8: Tons of Tonka Toy Trucks

For Max Gretschel, a young man with cerebral palsy and severe scoliosis, the Christmas season usually brings a special gift from his sister Cassie. Cassie tracks down rare tonka trucks for her brother’s collection. However, this year Cassie was having a hard time making that Christmas tradition a reality so she reached out on Reddit, and Tonka came through by sending Cassie the discontinued shiny truck as well as promising to send others as well. Merry Christmas Max! To see the full story, click here.

#9: Handy-Mallet Christmas Extravaganza

Tina Handy-Mallet, a Tennessee native, hosts a Christmas party that includes pictures with Santa, food, and gifts for over forty families in the Mid-South area. A tradition that began with only two families has now grown into a community outreach event. Thanks Tina for being an awesome stranger! To see the local news story highlighting Tina’s good deeds, click here.

#10: Santa Tracker Started With a Mistake

NORAD SANTA TRACKER

In December 1955 the top-secret military hotline for the Continental Air Defense Command (now NORAD) started ringing. Colonel Harry Shoup picked up the red phone expecting to be connected to the military top brass. Instead, a young child asked if he was speaking to Santa Claus. Shoup soon learned that the local Sears had run an advertisement which had mistakenly given out Shoup’s number as a direct line to Santa at the North Pole. Rather than being angry, Shoup assigned some airmen to answer the calls as Santa Claus. Soon the whole group was infected with the Christmas spirit. As a joke, on Christmas Eve, the squadron pasted a picture of Santa’s sleigh to their defense grid. Shoup took the “joke” a step further and called the local radio station to give them an update on Santa’s location. And that’s how the NORAD Santa Tracker program got started. Cool, huh?

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I grew up in TN, but recently moved to Denver, CO to pursue a Masters in Literature. I love reading, writing, playing outside, hanging out with friends and family, and watching great movies.