We've been asking you to submit your favorite Christmas memories and heartwarming Christmas stories to spread the warmth and joy of the holidays with a 'Charmed' Christmas with James Avery Artisan Jewelry and KVKI and you've delivered!

Each weekday through Friday, December 20, 2019, during the 12 pm hour with Bristol, we'll read one of your stories and the person who submitted it will receive a $50 gift card to James Avery Artisan Jewelry. At the end of the week, we'll put all five stories to a vote and the winner will receive an additional $250 James Avery Artisan Jewelry gift card! The winner will be announced Monday, December 23, 2019.

Today's winner is Jill Broadwater. Congrats Jill! We hope you love your new treasured piece of jewelry from James Avery Artisan Jewelry! Here's what she had to say:

One of my favorite Christmas memories is from the year we started celebrating Christmas again. It sounds weird, I know. Let me try to explain.

You see, my family has not always celebrated Christmas.

Oh, we did until I was 9 years old but then everything changed. That year my parents decided that for religious reasons, our family would no longer celebrate the holiday like the rest of the world. And it was very confusing.

I was a very compliant kid, so I kept all of my questions about their decision to myself. I did not know how to explain our family’s new perspective about Christmas to people who would ask, so I avoided it whenever possible. The best way I can describe my emotions during this time was I felt left out. I felt left out of the conversations among my peers regarding what they wanted Santa to bring them. I felt left out of giving or receiving gifts. And I felt left out of celebrations and programs at school that I wasn’t allowed to participate in. This period of our lives lasted for several years and at least for me, it didn’t get any easier.

But then fast forward to my junior year of high school. My parents had divorced, and my mom surprised my brother and I by saying that she wanted us to celebrate Christmas again. We were confused as to why she changed her mind but at the same time, thrilled! Our family dove headfirst into making homemade Christmas ornaments and decorating the tree with tinsel and sparkly lights. We watched holiday movies and drank hot cocoa and listened to Elvis sing Christmas songs as we drove around our neighborhood looking at the beautiful lights. And since it was the first year my brother and I would receive presents in a very long time, you better believe we made our lists and checked them twice! We could hardly wait for Christmas day to arrive and by hardly wait, I mean that we went snooping around our home for hidden gifts like impatient teenagers tend to do. We shopped until we dropped and squeezed every ounce of joy out of that wonderful time, but we also remembered Jesus is the reason for the season. We talked about His birth and we didn’t lose sight of what really mattered. I will never forget the wonder and excitement of that Christmas as I realized you can celebrate Christ and all the magic surrounding Christmas too.

Thank you, Jill, for sharing your memory! If you'd like to share yours or to find out more, click here!

See KVKI contest rules here.


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