85-year-old's toy workshop would make even Santa jealous

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A spirited local toymaker's operation keeps the spirit of giving alive all year. (KTRK)

When it comes to making toys, Santa and his elves have nothing on one spirited local man.

Ernest Raines, 85, has been building toys in his Rosharon home for several years now. Although his workspace has since grown into a toy lover's wonderland, it had very humble beginnings.

Four years ago, he began collecting discarded lumber that eventually formed the basis for his homemade toys.

Now, Raines' workshop is lined with wooden helicopters, trains and cars (including a nifty Ford Model T replica) -- but he still takes suggestions for new creations.

"I tell people if I don't have it, I'll make it for them!" he quipped.

The handmade toys run between $3 and $45, but Raines keeps the spirit of giving alive year-round.

"If I see people who don't have any money to spend, I push it to them and and say, 'See how this rolls!'" and his beneficiaries are off with their toy.

He says he intends to keep making toys for the rest of his life.

"A toy a day keeps the doctor away!"


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