MINNEAPOLIS - Michele Berg never expected her simple message of thanks to blow up on Facebook but as of Tuesday afternoon, her post had more than 100,000 likes and thousands of shares.
Berg said it was all just an effort to thank a couple of Target employees at her local Andover store, who she says made her daughter's Christmas one she'll never forget.
You see, Berg's 9-year-old daughter Natalie only wanted one thing for Christmas -- A talking Cayla doll. It was her one big gift from Santa this year, Berg said.
When she opened it on Christmas morning, the spring was missing so the batteries wouldn't stay inside, and the toy wouldn't work.
"She was just devastated," Berg said. "I told her that Santa works with Target and that when Christmas is over and Santa recovers, we'd figure something out."
Berg called Target and spoke to a woman named Judy. She explained the situation and Judy found a replacement. She told her she'd put it on hold for them to come and pick up. And then she asked her for her daughter's name.
Berg and her daughter walked into the store, Natalie holding her broken doll, and went to the customer service desk. That's where they spoke with Maggie.
"She looked at my daughter and said, 'Oh! Are you Natalie?' and my daughter's eyes got big," she said. "Then she told her that Santa was here and left a new doll for her. (She) did that all on their own. I was really impressed. She even explained how Santa dropped it off and told her about how sometimes things can get broken when traveling in the sleigh."
Maggie went on to tell her daughter about how Santa works with Target to fix toys that the elves might not have put together correctly.
Berg and her daughter grabbed a few more items at the store and then got another surprise at the checkout. The cashier -- who just happened to be Judy, who took Berg's call -- saw the doll she put aside for Natalie, bent down and said, "Are you Natalie?"
Berg said once again, her daughter's eyes went big.
"Judy told her, 'Oh, I just saw your new doll back there that Santa brought in,'" she said. "My daughter looked at me and was like, 'Wow, I must be famous!' She was just beaming. She was so excited. She was on cloud nine when we left."
Berg thought the experience was too good not to share -- so she posted the story on Target's Facebook page, in the hopes Santa's two Target elves could be recognized for their great work.
Hours later, it racked up hundreds of thousands of "likes" and thousands of shares. Much to the surprise of Berg.
"It blows my mind," she said. "My phone just has been going off constantly. I kept checking and it was 70,000, 80,000, 90,000. I'm just going, 'Holy moly!' I'm glad people are happy. It's a little surreal."