The Authors

Elaine, now 80 years young, grew up in a suburb of Chicago, Illinois, with her mother, Delores Van Kampen, her father, Adrian Van Kampen Sr., her sister, Barbara Jean, and her brother, Adrian Van Kampen Jr. Elaine was blessed with a desire to share the gift s of love and patience with everyone who touched her life.

Shortly after the close of WWII, Elaine met Al Whitney, at a party held in the home of his parents, Albert Gayle and Edna Whitney. Al had been discharged from the Army Air Corps. Al and Elaine fell in love and were married in June 1948. Four children blessed this union of hearts: Greg, Scott, Jim, and Jennifer. Family life centered around cherishing of basic values such as devotion to God, honesty, integrity, selflessness, love, kindness and good work habits. To date Al and Elaine have 8 wonderful grandchildren and 6 great grandchildren.

After retiring from the real estate brokerage industry, Al and Elaine moved to northern Wisconsin. In 2007 they opened a new business in downtown Minocqua called “The Knitters Nook.” Together they share the pleasure of welcoming residents and vacationers into their store. Yarns from all over the world are available for purchase along with select patterns, books, and needles. Elaine also teaches classes on “How To Knit” even the smallest sweaters, hats and mittens that might fit an Elf! It wouldn’t be surprising if Goldie was found sporting a new sweater knitted especially for her this Christmas.


Jim Whitney, one of the four children of Elaine and Al Whitney, was born in Illinois. Jim grew up with that Midwestern Love for all four seasons and enjoyed and played in several sports in each one – including Football, Ice skating as a speed skater and skiing at the Fox Trail Ski Resort that his Uncle owned in Cary Illinois.

It was not until recently in his mid 50’s in collaboration with his mother Elaine that the pair decided to put their family’s true story about The Christmas Elves and how the elves played a major role in the lives of the entire family into a book. Jim carried on the family Christmas tradition as he raised his two children with “Starbright” one of Red the Elves children.

 Jim Whitney spent most of his career in the high tech industries including computer soft ware and hardware, 3d animation soft ware and print and publishing soft ware.

Jim and his wife Jan, now grandparents to four, spend joyful time whenever possible with their grandchildren. They make their home in West Palm Beach, Florida, along with their Golden Retrievers, Tucker and Hinckley.