Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The Magic of Christmas

This whole month we have been talking to our children about the real meaning of Christmas, how it is better to give than to receive, how we are to be thankful for everything we have, how we need to keep our focus on Jesus...and it went well. Except my kids really want to believe in Santa Claus.  They are both at an age where they ask a lot of questions and come to us for the answers.  We still feel new to the whole Kid-Santa "thing", never knowing quite how to respond.

We have told them that Santa Claus was a real person a long time ago (Saint Nicholas), but he's in heaven now and so we just pretend that Santa comes into our homes and brings us gifts.  We have told them that Santa is a man in a costume. We have told them that mommy and daddy put presents out in the night.  But these kids, they want to believe in Santa Claus.

So, when Micah asked for a really expensive Star Wars toy for Christmas and I said we couldn't get it this year, he replied, "Santa can get it, mom. He can get anything."  Hmmmmm.... not sure what to do with that.  When I told Micah he was only getting 3 presents, because that's how many Jesus got, he replied, "No, mom. Santa gets me 3, and you get me 3."  No pressure.

As the day came closer, their belief in Santa seemed to grow, too.   They talked about him every day.  Jaden wanted to walk by him at the mall, but wouldn't let me get close to him.  Jaden started to ask me questions, too, and I found myself waffling - backtracking, if you will.  "Mommy, how will Santa get into our house since we don't have a chimney?"  I heard myself say, "Well, he's magic, so he just comes in through the back door and doesn't even have to open it."  Um, what did I just say?!

Their excitement was building as Christmas Eve approached.  We tried to avoid the topic of Santa, but the boys kept wanting to talk about him!  On Christmas Eve, we put the boys to bed around 8pm.  Jaden got out of bed every 5 minutes- I kept seeing his shadow on the wall - and he whispered, "I'm waiting for Santa!"  At 10:30pm, as I was watching television, I jumped out of my skin as I saw something moving under the piano bench. It was Jaden, trying to fall asleep under the piano so he could catch a glimpse of the man in the red suit.

At that moment, I totally caved.  I went and got the milk and cookies and put them on the piano bench. Then I went and typed up a letter to each boy, on the computer using homemade "Santa Letterhead", about how they had both been good boys but needed to remember that Jesus was the reason for the season.  Martin took bites out of the cookies and we went to bed.

In the morning, Jaden could not contain his excitement. At 7am we heard him running through the house yelling, "Santa came! Santa came!"  We opened presents and then I read the letters.  Jaden asked, "How did he know those things?!"  He held up a half-bitten cookie and asked if he could eat it.  Micah said, "Eww! Those have Santa's germs on them!"

Even though the kids recognized the wrapping paper, and all the gifts said "From, Dad and Mom", they still want to believe.  And I have to admit, it is a lot of fun.  As long as they know the true reason for Christmas, which they do, we decided to embrace their joy and passion for Santa this year.  It may have been last minute, but we came around :)

1 comment:

  1. We're in a similar boat. :) It is fun to see the pure joy of Christmas in their eyes. They have years to "not believe in magic" so for now we let their imaginations go :)