25 Days of Christmas--Day Sixteen
To Santa or not to Santa...that is the question for Day Sixteen of the 25 Giveaways of Christmas: What about you? Santa Claus or no Santa Claus? For us, no Santa. We try to keep Christmas focused on Christ, and sometimes that's hard even without including that right jolly old elf. When I was little, my parents told us right off the bat that there was no Santa. They did tell us not to tell other kids, though, because it might make them sad. I remember one evening my mom's friend, Robin, stopped by with her daughter, Marcie, who was a year older than I. Marcie came in to talk with my sister and me. Our conversation went something like this: Katie: There is no such thing as Santa Claus. Me: Katie! Mommy said you're not supposed to tell people that. It might make them sad. Marcie: Yeah. And it did make me sad. You really hurt my feelings. (She did not, however, look very sad, and I suspect she already had known the truth.) It was a year or two later that my mom and I were walking through the mall, just the two of us. There was Santa, sitting in the middle of the mall, with a line of kids waiting to sit on his lap. I was shocked when my mom asked if I'd like to go sit on his lap! I reminded her that Santa wasn't real. She said maybe it would be fun to pretend, so I got in line. When it was my turn and Santa asked me what I would like for Christmas, I told him I wanted a "Make It and Bake It." (It was this little oven in which you could bake suncatchers. The heat of the light bulb inside the oven melted the little colored crystals you carefully put in the frame of the suncatcher. I had seen the commercial for it numerous times while watching the Smurfs on Saturday mornings, and it looked neat, but I'd never told anyone I actually wanted it.) I hopped down from Santa's lap, he handed me a little candy cane, and that was that. As I enjoyed the candy cane, my mom asked me what I'd said to Santa, so I told her about the Make It and Bake It. That Christmas morning, I was so puzzled when my grandparents gave me the Make It and Bake It. How did they know I wanted it? I looked questioningly at my mom, who responded, "Maybe Santa told them!" And then I realized that she had told them. (Much later, I realized that she had probably even bought it for them to give to me!) So, I probably almost believed in Santa Claus for about four seconds! I'm not sure when--I suppose it was when all four of us girls were definitely old enough for them to be completely certain we knew the real reason for Christmas--but my parents suddenly began giving us presents from "Santa." When we got even older, we started giving them presents from "Santa's Elves." It was fun, but not the focus for us. Anyway, I'm not totally against Santa Claus, but for our family, at least right now, we do not have Santa. What about you? Oh, and by the way, I still have that Make It and Bake It!