Joan Eyolfson Cadham
Contact Info

Christmas (book) is a'coming . . .Out this fall - watch for updates:
The cat's in the tree, the tourtière's in the oven and the penguins are gathering in the living
room. Joan Eyolfson Cadham must be preparing for Christmas. The Twelve Gifts of Christmas and Other Stories will be ready for Christmas, too.

Joan has celebrated Christmas in a big old house on a farm near Leslie, SK, in Foam Lake, SK, in two suburbs of Toronto (Scarborough and North York), in Malton, Brampton and Ottawa, ON, in Cold Lake, AB, in two Montreal-area suburbs (Beaconsfield and Pincourt), in Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, on the western tip of Montreal Island, and, since 1992, back in Foam Lake. Sandwiched between chapters on Christmas in her favourite locations are facts, history, superstition, legends and reflections covering the season from Christmas Eve through to Boxing Day, New Year's Eve and Epipany. Who is the anonymous bringer of gifts? Depends on where you live. Why should we all have Christmas spiders in our decorated trees? That ancient legend might have originated in any of several countries. Joan also tries to answer the most pressing question of all: what are the authentic ingredients for tourtière? Speaking of food, the book includes the family favourite holiday fare, traditional prairie, French-Canadian, and Icelandic. Dozens of photos are scattered through the 160 pages.

Meanwhile, Joan is very aware that, for many people and for many diverse reasons, Christmas is not the happiest moment of the year. There is a short chapter devoted to those among us who do not find Christmas the happiest moment of the year, and to family and friends who want to do the right thing.

The title? It's in honour of a Secret Santa who delivered an annual parade of works of art that ultimately caught the attention of an entire prairie town. That story earned its own chapter, complete with photos of each of the gifts.

Raised on a farm near Leslie, SK, Joan attended Rosevale, a one-roomed rural school, until the family moved to Foam Lake. Following high school, she moved on to Toronto and journalism. A combination of frequent moves required by her first husband's job and the arrival of Joe, Ruth and Inga created a hiatus from writing; the creative spark reignited when she moved to Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue QC and met Jack Cadham and his 24-foot sailboat, Hirondelle. Jack, Joan, three cats and two sailboats moved to Foam Lake in 1992 where they paid cash for a house.
Joan gave up "a real job" in favour of freelance writing, editing and storytelling, and has never regretted the decision.

*Freelance writer/photographer/editor/oral storyteller
*Editor, Port Hole, the quarterly magazine of Canadian Power and Sail Squadrons, a volunteer organization devoted to teaching and promoting safe boating - 1997 continuing.
*Columnist for Prairie Messenger, published weekly by the Benedictine monks at St. Peter's Abbey, Muenster, SK, mid-1980s continuing.
*Columnist and editorial writer for the Foam Lake Review - 1983 continuing.
*Reviewer, Tundra books (children's and young adult), and boating, safety and environment-oriented books for Port Hole.
*In progress: Canadian Book of Days, joint authorship with Harvey Grossman, background and current celebrations, sacred, ethnic, historical, national, folk days as celebrated in Canada.

2007: Contributing writer, Saskatchewan Book of Everything: Everything You Wanted to Know About Saskatchewan and Were Going to Ask Anyway, edited by Kelly-Anne Riess, published
by MacIntyrePurcell Publishing,
2008: Truth or Tale, Documentary TV Series - SCN, the stories, storytellers and landscapes of Saskatchewan, 13-week series. Recreated as a 14-disk box set DVDs in 2008. Winner, Tourism Saskatchewan Creative Excellence Award (2008) and winner Worldfest Houston Film Festival, USA, Gold Lone Star Remi Award for Best Cultural Film & Video, 2008.
2010 to December 2015: editor, Lögberg-Heimskringla, the Icelandic bi-weekly published out of Winnipeg, covering all things Icelandic across Canada, the USA and Iceland, the oldest continuously published ethnic newspaper in Canada.
2011: First Encounters: Served as a Norse resource for an educational multimedia online resource for grades 8 to 12, a 3D interactive game that allows players to experience some aspects of first encounters between guides the Norse and the Thule circa 1000 C.E., and the French and the Mi'kmaq in the 1500s. The project was headed by the Centre for Indigenous Research, Learning and Education (CIRCLE) at Carleton University, and is available online at
2011: Author, The Prairie Does Flourish: Sisters of St. Elizabeth, 100 years of blooming on Canadian soil, a history of the Congregation in Humboldt, published by the Sisters of St. Elizabeth, Humboldt, SK.
2011: Editor, Starting Out: A young man's search, life after school, in written conversations with a 75-year-old mentor, Rob Miller with Dennis Dwyer, prepared for the Dobson Centre for Entrepreneurial Studies, Desautels Faculty of Management, McGill University, 2011
2013: Editor, Beyond Belief: Agnostic musings for 12 Step life, finally, daily reflections for nonbelievers, freethinkers and everyone, author Joe C., Rebellion Dogs Publishing
2014: Editor/researcher/occasional writer, local community history book, The Wynyard Story: An Historic Journey of a Saskatchewan Community, 841 pps, layout and photos, Audrey Shepherd, published by Wynyard Town Council, launched October 2014
2015: Oral storyteller, Sasktel MAX TV documentary on Storytelling in Saskatchewan, 30-minute show, part of a group of five, now available on YouTube at
In Progress: Canadian Book of Days, with Harvey Grossman, background and current practices, sacred, ethnic, historical and national special days and folk festivals.

All contents copyright Joan Eyolfson Cadham

Joan Eyolfson Cadham
Box 1049 Foam Lake Sask S0A 1A0
phone 306-272-4994
fax 306-272-3796
please note - no hyphen in
Eyolfson Cadham




The Genetic Connection

Story Telling




Writing Credits