Anderson had breast cancer at the time and after taking photographs with the shopping mall Santa, tried to explain to her children that the jolly old elf cannot do everything.
"He told Santa that he just wanted me to be better," explained Anderson. "In my head I just kept thinking, you know, I hope he doesn't really think that Santa can do that."
That is when the family decided Santa must have a "secret elf" who prays for the big things on children's lists.
The next night, Anderson got up at 2:00 a.m. inspired to write a book about the elf she named "Merryam."
"I think she means something different to every person depending on their situation and what they're really looking for someone to pray for," Anderson said.
The book is also available at the Santa's Secret Elf website. For every book bought at the site this month, the Anderson-Gogulski family will donate a book to a family in need.
Find out more here, http://www.merryam.com/.
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