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The best Christmas gift I ever received was...

December 18, 1999

We asked teens to tell us about their favorite Christmas gifs. We picked two winners from the 20 responses.

Matt Tyler, an eighth-grader at Northern Middle School in Hagerstown, and Patrick Younkins, an eighth-grader at Boonsboro Middle School, will receive $50 each.

cont. from lifestyle

Many of the entries were from students in Heidi Stroker's writing workshop. Stroker is an eighth-grade language arts and reading teacher at Boonsboro Middle School.

Here's what some of the teens had to say:




My favorite Christmas gift was a new Suzuki DS 80 dirt bike. I was soooo happy. That was all I wanted for Christmas. When I saw it, I about jumped out of my pants. That is how happy I was. I rode it all morning. I was a happy boy.

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  • Brad Wetzel
  • Age 13
  • Boonsboro Middle School
  • Grade 8


My favorite Christmas gift was my John Deere 214 tractor when I was 9. The reason it was my favorite gift was I always wanted a John Deere. Tractors have always appealed to me. I still have my John Deere after four years. I drive it a lot.

  • Joseph Ellis
  • Age 13
  • Boonsboro Middle School
  • Grade 8


My favorite Christmas gift was my GT bicycle. My bike is the coolest because it shines and all the kids say, "I wish I had that bike." When I didn't have that bike, all my friends could do tricks, and I could not, but now I can. That's my favorite gift.

  • Ben Smith
  • Age 13
  • Boonsboro Middle School
  • Grade 8


My mom and dad got me a Jet Ski one Christmas. We have a place at River Bend to ride it, but my favorite Christmas gift was when they had my bedroom redone and I got to pick out my bedroom suite. It was very special to me. I also got the other regular stuff like clothes. I do the tree at our house and all the decorating. I like to give people gifts. We will have something for our pets also, two dogs, one cat, one rabbit and birds. We will eat with my grandparents and great-grandma, who lives with them.

  • Roxi Conner
  • Boonsboro High School
  • Age 16
  • Grade 11


I received my favorite Christmas gift when I was 9. My mom's friend makes country rag dolls, and there was this one that I wanted so much but it was too expensive, and my mom said "no." When I woke up on Christmas morning, the doll was under the tree.

  • Stacy Williamson
  • Age 17
  • Williamsport High School
  • Grade 12


When I was 7, I received a pink stretch limo for my Barbies. I was so happy because my Barbies could cruise in style. Before, they were pushing a broken-down jeep that I bought at a yard sale which was being held together by duct tape.

  • Angela Clifford
  • Age 15
  • North Hagerstown High School


When I was little I watched "The Wizard of Oz" at my grandma's house. I watched it every day. I wanted it for Christmas. It was my favorite movie because I liked every scene very much. So on Christmas Day, I went down to my grandma's house, and there it was.

  • James Pearrell
  • Age 14
  • Boonsboro Middle School
  • Grade 8


On Dec. 25, 1998, I received a Christmas present from my boyfriend. It was a necklace. It had my birthstone on a charm in the middle of the necklace. He put it on me, and I never took it off. To this day, I still have it on.

  • Ashley Cole
  • Age 13
  • Boonsboro Middle School
  • Grade 8


$50 winner Patrick Younkins

My best Christmas gift didn't come from a store. My mom is a two-time ovarian cancer survivor. It has devastated my family. This year on Dec. 6, she went for a big check-up. She came home and said she was clear of cancer. That was the best Christmas gift.

  • Age 13
  • Boonsboro Middle School
  • Grade 8


My favorite Christmas gift is a tea set from my grandfather. When I visited him, we would play and talk over cookies and milk. My grandfather is gone now. I miss those tea parties and talks, but I still have the tea set we used to remind me of him.

  • Sarah Simmons
  • Age 13
  • Boonsboro Middle School
  • Grade 8


$50 winner Matt Tyler

A handmade coupon book that I received when I was 10 that contained coupons for special activities to do with my parents one-on-one. I really enjoyed the time we spent together doing fun things. That year I realized that the best gift was not always the biggest or most expensive.

  • Matt Tyler
  • Age 13
  • Northern Middle School
  • Grade 8


My favorite Christmas gift was a bike. I got it when I was 10 years old. I was so happy when I got it. I wanted to ride it that day, but I couldn't because it was snowing out, so I rode it the next day.

  • Jared Mann
  • Age 13
  • Boonsboro Middle School
  • Grade 8


I received my favorite Christmas gift on Christmas of 1998. Instead of receiving a lot of gifts, my parents took my sister and I to Jamaica. The fun and memories we had brought our family together; that is what Christmas is all about. Going to Jamaica was a great Christmas experience.

  • Amanda Balamenti
  • Age 13
  • Boonsboro Middle School
  • Grade 8


When I was 12 years old, I got a Nintendo 64. It was my favorite gift ever. I stayed up all night playing it. I loved it so much. I never stop playing it unless I have to go to school. I am still having fun playing it.

  • Andrea Youngblood
  • Age 13
  • Boonsboro Middle School
  • Grade 8


This may not be the winning essay or the answer you want to see, but it comes from the heart. The greatest gift was given to me and the world many years ago. Jesus is my favorite Christmas gift. God gave Him to the world. Without Christ, there wouldn't even be a CHRISTmas. This gift cost Jesus everything - his life. Because of Him, I can live - forever. Jesus IS the reason for the season.

  • Heather Irvin
  • Age14
  • Clear Spring High School
  • Grade 9


When asked about my favorite Christmas gift, I think past money and popularity and go straight to the heart. The gift that will always be closest to my heart is my family. They're always there for me when I'm in need, and they care, like so many people don't nowadays.

  • Chris Perkins
  • Age 13
  • Boonsboro Middle School
  • Grade 8
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