The Legend of the Nutcracker
Long ago, in the Ore Mountains of Germany, a little boy lived with his family. The boy and his father were very close, but the father worked long hours in the mines. He would leave very early in the morning for work and did not return until late at night. The boy missed his father, and was afraid when he was away from home.
To ease his son's fears, the father began to carve wooden nutcrackers to protect the son while he was away. He told the boy that the nutcrackers would watch over him and guard him from danger. The boy remained fearful and so the father began making more nutcrackers. He would return from his long hours in the mines and begin a new nutcracker every night. He would make each one unique; a solider, an artist, a king and so on. They kept him company, protected him and helped him pass the time while his father was away.
When the son grew to be a man and had a son of his own, he continued the tradition his father started and began making nutcrackers for his own son. And so the tradition came to be passed from generation to generation. The collection of nutcrackers continued to grow and each generation added its own unique qualities to the nutcrackers.