Mum writes book about Santa shielding to guide kids through a Covid Christmas

It goes without saying that Christmas will not be just like every other year before it in 2020.

While we can adjust our expectations and understand the necessity for certain changes, children might struggle to understand that Christmas can still be magical amid coronavirus.

That’s where a new picture book, A Very Corona Christmas, comes in.

Author and illustrator Kelley Donner was inspired by conversations with her sons, Jonas, Lukas, and Max, to write a book all about how Father Christmas is handling Covid-19.

In the children’s book, a crafty help helps to save the day as Santa shields at home.

Kelley hopes the story will provide some reassurance to both children and parents amid all the uncertainties surrounding the pandemic and lockdown as Christmas approaches.

She said: ‘After world leaders cancel Christmas due to Covid 19, Santa decides he has no choice but to furlough his elves until the pandemic is over.

‘But then a bright, young elf brings Santa a letter from a little girl that changes everything.’

Aimed at children aged between three and eight years of age, the book combines Kelley’s watercolour illustrations with a healthy dose of humour, as Santa’s North Pole HQ gears up to get Christmas back on track during a pandemic.

Kelley, who is originally from Kansas in the United States but who now lives in Trumpington, Cambridge, said: ‘My kids and I began talking about what life would be like at the North Pole and how Santa would respond to Covid-19.

‘We figured Santa, being older, would likely be sheltering at home and the elves would have to come up with creative ways to watch children from afar, such as watching kids on Zoom lessons.

‘My sons, ages six, nine and 11, helped me a lot with the story ideas and we had a lot of good laughs coming up with illustrations, such as the sleigh with built-in Santa-tizer spray.’

Kelley added: ‘There is so much uncertainty and anxiety right now, so I thought it would be helpful to talk about Covid-19 in a way that’s both engaging and reassuring for children.

‘I also included a few little jokes for parents that most children won’t even catch, because I think it’s important that parents enjoy this book as much as kids do.’

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