“When we give cheerfully and accept gratefully, everyone is blessed.” -Maya Angelou

It’s Christmas time again. Stores have had their well-lit displays of bangles, baubles and toys front and center a week before October 31st! Bing Crosby and “Old Blue Eyes” (Frank Sinatra, to the young folks) started crooning about sleigh bells and white snow on the radio waves in mid-November. The Thanksgiving turkey had barely been defrosted before neighbors started stringing their bushes with twinkle lights and bedecking their lawns with huge blow-up Santas. Whether the festivities make you say, “Bah humbug,” or “Ho, ho, ho,” one thing is for sure, the Christmas season makes us remember. And we here at Advanced Wildlife Control like most to remember the joy and kindness we’ve received over this year from so many of our wonderful customers. We wanted to share these memories with you.

Everyone here had some really great stories but with around 14,000 customers, it was impossible to include every one. Here are just some of the highlights. Owner, Paul Winkelmann remembers most fondly how so many of his customers stopped to comment on how much it seemed he enjoyed his job over the years. “I still have fun,” he says with a twinkle in his eye. Technician, Josh Stangl recounts one customer who worked at a candy factory. “She would ask me what sort of candy my kids liked. Then the next time I came, she’d have huge bags of candy waiting for me to take home to the kids. She was just the nicest lady.” When technician, Brenton Page and his wife were expecting a baby, many customers surprised him with baby gifts. “Some even hand-knit baby sweaters and blankets. One customer gave us diapers.” Technician DJ Townsend was deeply touched by one customer’s kindness in particular. “If I was at her house and she was cooking, she would bring me a bowl of homemade soup or make a plate of food for me. Just such a sweet person.” Technician Ryan Litzau always works hard but twice had customers surprise him with a special gift for doing such a good job. “A customer gave me gift cards. It wasn’t necessary at all but I just felt really appreciated.” Technician Tom Stuck felt equally appreciated by many customers random acts of kindness- “I really appreciate the small things. The cold beverage on a hot day. I’ve even have had customers make me dinner if I’m working on a late night.” A customer even put a personalized touch on a baby gift for technician Zach Lange’s wife. “She made my wife owl earrings because our son’s initials are O.W.L. and one of his nicknames is ‘Hootie.’” These random acts of kindness made a difference and didn’t go unnoticed.

It’s fun to get caught up in the ornaments and the garland, in the cookie-making and the caroling, but it’s more important to think about the memories, the love, the giving and the kindness that gives this season it’s special glow. If you have a story about Christmas kindness that you want to share with us, connect with us on Facebook, or Twitter (#awc #awckindness) and tell us your story! Let’s keep sharing these stories throughout this season! Merry Christmas, from our family to yours!

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