Marti Schodt
Updated Dec 17, 2014 @ 11:14 am

I’m a big believer in the kindness of strangers and the sweet, unwavering devotion of dogs. I believe in the beautiful, unreserved love of parents, and the endlessly adapting, full-hearted hope of friendship. I believe that everyone will find someone in this life who understands them intuitively and completely, without hesitation or judgment. I believe in magic, and I believe in Christmas, and perhaps most of all I believe in Christmas Magic. I believe, I believe, I believe.

If you believe, too, I’m sure you’re familiar with the ultimate magical Christmas movie, The Polar Express, about a kid who winds up on a train to the North Pole. If you’re not, or you’re having some trouble believing this year, you should watch it. It has a lot to teach us about kindness, generosity, and not losing very important tickets. Basically it’s a chocolate fondue fountain of information and important life lessons. Here’s what I learned, I hope it helps put the jingle in your Kringle and the jolly in your holly.

Lesson 1: Everyone has doubts. . .
. . .especially about things we can’t see or hold like the future or love or Santa, but sometimes you just gotta take that leap.

Lesson 2: If a magical train pulls up outside your house, you should probably just roll with it.

Really, I know it’s weird, but don’t question it.

Lesson 3: New people are scary. . .

. . . but probably nicer than you think they are (especially if they bring you hot chocolate!)

Lesson 4: Hot chocolate is the Queen Bee of beverages

Additionally, we learn from the movie, that sharing hot chocolate is the best way to make friends.

Lesson 5: Someone in the world is looking out for you

It may even be a terribly un-photogenic ghost. Again, don’t freak out. Just go with it.

Lesson 6: Invest in a robe with zippered pockets. . .

. . .because you never know when you’ll have to hold onto golden tickets or magical bells, and regular pockets tend to tear.

Lesson 7: Time stops when you’re having fun


Lesson 8: If you mess up, try your very best to fix it.

Even if it means climbing aboard a moving train to deliver a lost ticket that wouldn’t have been lost if you’d only had zippered pockets.

Lesson 9: Believe in yourself. Always.

Lesson 10: Sometimes the simplest gifts are the best gifs

In the movie, the boy finds a bell that breaks off of Santa’s sleigh. When he “believes” (see above) he can hear the sound of the bell. This is what Santa calls “The First Gift of Christmas.” It’s not a new iPad but it’s still pretty awesome.

Lesson 11: Finally, friends come in all shapes and sizes

Cherish them and give them all the hot chocolate they desire.

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