We are very excited to introduce you to Santa’s Elves. Santa’s Elves are T1D kids and their families who have been working with the architects to design and build the Gingerbread Houses.  We encourage you to read about each elf and be sure to vote for your favorite!  After you vote, you can also donate via text as well.  Show your support of your favorite elf this holiday season.  All proceeds benefit JDRF Northwest Chapter. 
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Evan Fetro
Age 9 1/2, Diagnosed wtih T1D at age 7 1/2
Assisting Mulvanny G2 with "Mele Kalikimaka"

How old were you when diagnosed with T1D?
I was 7 ½. My diagnosis day was 12/30/12, over Christmas break.
 
How has diabetes affected your life?
Initially the changes I had to make seemed huge, but today the changes we made are my way of life. I check my blood sugar, by doing finger pokes, about 8 times a day and I give myself injections of insulin for the food I eat. 
 
Why are you excited to be a Gingerbread Village elf?
I got to meet some cool people that work at the architect firm. I was able to help build the gingerbread house you see here today. Most importantly I got to share my story and spread awareness about Type 1 diabetes.
 
What do you like about your gingerbread house?
I like the Hawaiian theme of our gingerbread house. My family and I went to Maui a year ago and it reminds me of my trip.
 
Do you have any hobbies?
I love to play Minecraft on the computer with my sister and my friends. I play select soccer, my favorite position is midfielder. I enjoy snowboarding in the winter with my family. I also love playing football, riding bikes, doing crafts and hiking with my family.
 
How long have you and your family been involved with JDRF?
We have been involved with JDRF since our first Beat the Bridge walk in the spring of 2013. My team "Evan's Insulinators" has now participated in two BTB walks and I am also into my second year as a youth ambassador for JDRF. 
 
Have you ever been to Gingerbread Village?
Last year was my very first year attending a Gingerbread Village display. 
 
Do you have a favorite theme or Gingerbread creation from the past?
Last years theme was pretty cool. I think this year will be my favorite though!
 
What else would you like to say about type 1 diabetes or Gingerbread Village
From Evan's mom: Evan is the strongest and toughest boy I know. We are so proud that he is involved with such a great organization. He truly enjoys advocating for JDRF and Diabetes Awareness. We all look forward to the day when we can say "Remember when Evan HAD diabetes", that would be a dream come true! 

 


 

 

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 Alex Van Matre
Age 14, Diagnosed with T1D at age 2 1/2
Assisting Callison Architecture with “Chipmunk Song”/”Rockin’ Around the Christmas Tree”/”All I want for Christmas”
 
How has diabetes affected your life?
It has separated me greatly in my mathematical excellence. 
 
Why are you excited to be a Gingerbread Village elf?
The Gingerbread Village is a special event I look forward to every year as part of the holidays.  I think it will be fun to be part of creating one of the Villages.
 
What do you like about your gingerbread house?
I like all of the sub-themes.
 
Do you have any hobbies?
Computer developing, coding and gaming.
 
How long have you and your family been involved with JDRF?
12 years
 
Have you ever been to Gingerbread Village?
Yes

 Do you have a favorite theme or Gingerbread creation from the past?
I loved all of the overall creations and detail that is made with the candy.

 
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Henry Nelson
Age 9, Diagnosed with T1D at age 3
Assisting Master Builders Association of King and Snohomish Counties & Gelotte Hommas Architecture with “Oh Little Town of Bethlehem”/”Little Drummer Boy”/ “Do You Hear What I hear?”/”First Noel”

 
How has diabetes affected your life?
It makes me have to stop things I like to do and test or tell my parents my number.  Sometimes I have to get tabs or a juice.  Sometimes I feel embarrassed and I don’t want anyone to see me do diabetes stuff.
 
Why are you excited to be a Gingerbread Village elf?
Because I think it is fun and cool.
 
What do you like about your gingerbread house?
It is one of my favorite Christmas stories.  I really like the glowing star that is taller than everything and different colors.
 
Do you have any hobbies?
I like to play cars, play soccer games, and play football and war with my brother John.
 
How long have you and your family been involved with JDRF?
2 years
 
Have you ever been to Gingerbread Village?
Yes, last year
 
Do you have a favorite theme or Gingerbread creation from the past?
The Seahawks Stadium from last year and the big skyscraper buildings.
 
What else would you like to say about type 1 diabetes or Gingerbread Village?
I am excited to be an elf for Gingerbread Village and to see my gingerbread house and the other houses.  Having diabetes is annoying but sometimes it is fun to get treats when I’m low. 

 
 
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Abby Alberg
Age 5, Diagnosed at age 2 1/2
Assisting 4D Architects with
“I’ll be home for Christmas”/”Santa is coming to town”/”Christmas in the Northwest”

 
How has diabetes affected your life?
I don't like diabetes, but I am brave and try not to let it make me sad. I really like to eat, and sometimes my mom says I have to wait or eat something different than I want. I don't like that. I also don't like the pokies which I get every couple of days. I do like getting new pump pouches, though -- I have a lot of cute ones. And I love going to see Dr. Sarah (and the Mickey Mouse statue) at the Children's Hospital.
 
Why are you excited to be a Gingerbread Village elf?
I love Christmas, I love candy, I love elves, and I love building things!
 
What do you like about your gingerbread house? 
I haven't seen it yet, but I love music, especially Christmas music. So, I am excited for this year's theme.  And of course, I am excited to help put the candy on!
 
Do you have any hobbies? 
I love to play with my brother and my stuffed animals. I have a lot of stuffies, and I know each of them really well. I also love to swim, pack for vacations, and spend time with my family. 
 
How long have you and your family been involved with JDRF? 
Since my diagnosis. I ran my first race last year at Beat the Bridge with lots of our friends and my family.
 
Have you ever been to Gingerbread Village? 
No, but my mom volunteered there and told me all about it last year. She showed me a lot of pretty pictures. 
 
Do you have a favorite theme or Gingerbread creation from the past?
I like all gingerbread houses, especially when I can try the candy while I make it.

 
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Nate VerBoort
Age 14, Diagnosed with T1D at age 9
Assisting Skanska with "Oh Christmas Tree"

How has diabetes affected your life?
Diabetes has affected my life by making me grow up faster and making me be responsible for my health. It also makes my family eat healthier and realize what they are eating.
 
Why are you excited to be a Gingerbread Village elf?
I am excited to be an elf to see behind the scenes of making the houses and also to help make decisions and create the gingerbread house.
 
What do you like about your gingerbread house?
I like that our gingerbread house incorporates all of the themes I liked and ties it all back to Seattle.
 
Do you have any hobbies?
I like to play baseball, soccer, basketball and hang out with friends.
 
How long have you and your family been involved with JDRF?
We have been involved with JDRF for 4 years.
 
Have you ever been to Gingerbread Village?
Yes. I have volunteered at the Gingerbread Village three years.
 
Do you have a favorite theme or Gingerbread creation from the past?
I liked the fairytale theme because the houses were very creative and I liked all of the moving parts.
 
What else would you like to say about type 1 diabetes or Gingerbread Village?
Type 1 diabetes doesn’t have a cure. It is difficult to maintain and live with. Gingerbread Village is for a great cause and it would be awesome for people to donate.

 

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Katelyn Forsythe
Age 10 1/2, Diagnosed with T1D at age 8
Assisting Bailly and Bailly with "Feliz Navidad"
 
How has diabetes affected your life? 
I am the only person in my family with type 1 diabetes. I work hard everyday to keep my blood sugars in range but sometimes I can’t help it.If I am growing, sick, tired, angry or stressed my blood sugar numbers are affected.When I play sports, I have to be very careful during and after to make sure my blood sugars do not go too low.My parents send me to a school where there are nurses so they can help me and be there if I need them – most kids do not visit the nurse every day.My parents worry about me and have to check me multiple times a night to make sure I am okay and my blood sugars don’t go too low or too high. I can only go to camp where they can take care of me and I usually have people come to my house for sleepovers.I am very lucky because I have good friends who know I have type 1 diabetes, but I will always need people to know that I have diabetes so they can help me.When I am too high, I am not able to eat until I am within a lower range as anything I eat will increase my blood sugars even higher.This is not fun when I am at a party and everyone else gets to eat but I need to wait.I wear an insulin pump that I change every 3 days, a continuous glucose meter that I change every 7 days and I prick my finger 8 to 10 times a day.One thing about diabetes that I like is that I have met other kids my age who also have diabetes and we can be ourselves and just have fun.
 
Why are you excited to be a Gingerbread Village elf?
I like the houses and I like spreading the word about Type 1 diabetes to help raise money for a cure for me and my friends with type 1.
 
What do you like about your gingerbread house?  
I like the theme of Feliz Navidad.I have been to Mexico before and it is one of my favorite trips.
 
Do you have any hobbies?
I play soccer, softball, swim, ride my bike and I like to build stuff.I want to be an engineer when I grow up.
 
How long have you and your family been involved with JDRF?  
My family and I have been volunteering since I was diagnosed.I am a JDRF Youth Ambassador.
 
Have you ever been to Gingerbread Village?  
We have volunteered the last 2 years at the Gingerbread Village.Last year my grandma, grandpa, mom, dad and my little sister volunteered with me.
 
Do you have a favorite theme or Gingerbread creation from the past?
Jack and the Beanstalk is my favorite so far.
 
 
What else would you like to say about type 1 diabetes or Gingerbread Village? Many people know someone with type 1 diabetes but not many know what it really is and what people have to do every day.  Having events like Gingerbread Village helps people learn about it and raise money for a cure and better devices to help type 1 kids and adults every day.  Plus it’s fun!