It’s beginning to look a little like Christmas

WARNING:  I am super opinionated about some things.  Well, most things actually.  And I’m pretty sure you won’t agree with me on this one.  But I don’t mind if you don’t mind.

My sister Arianne blogged yesterday about telling her kids about Santa.  There is no way I could say what I need to say in one measly little comment box.  You see, I actually tell my children that there is no Santa.  I always have.  Don’t worry, though.  I always tell them other children are foolish and have parents who lie to them, so they all think Santa is real.  And to not tell them otherwise.  

Just kidding, folks!  Seriously, I do tell them that most kids believe in Santa, so they shouldn’t tell their friends that he’s not real. But my kids accidentally let the truth slip out once, prompting an irate phone call from Heather, who was driving carpool that day:

Heather (in near hysterics): How could you?  How could you tell them that Santa is not real?
Me: Because he isn’t.
These are my problems with Santa:

–He is a symbol of everything crass and materialistic about Christmas.  I’m not saying that presents are bad.  Heaven knows I’m not.  Because nobody loves presents as much as I do.  I really, really love presents. I just hate how Christmas is all about buying and spending and shopping and getting and comparing and spoiling and excess.  I want to have myself a merry little Christmas.  I don’t think that Santa should be the mascot.

–Silly me, I also think that it should be a religious holiday.  I think my children should understand that Christ is the whole entire purpose.  When my children figure out that Santa isn’t real, I don’t want them to wonder the same thing about Jesus.  I am so sick of people bearing their testimonies of Santa.  If I see one more sign about Santa that says “I believe” I’m going to throw up.  All over my glittery Rudolph sweater.

–I spend all this time and effort picking out the perfect presents for my kids.  I’m not about to give some fictional character all the credit!  I want them to know that Mommy and Daddy spend money and time making their Christmas splendid–so don’t forget it! 

It hasn’t hurt my kids to know that Cinderella is just a story. What’s the big brou-ha-ha about Santa being a story too? 

P.S. I just realized this is my second rant in two days. Sorry, I have no idea why. (No, it’s not that time of the month, you weirdo!)  I’ll be back to my light-hearted self tomorrow.

| Filed under Christmas

12 thoughts on “It’s beginning to look a little like Christmas

  1. We’ve kind of straddled the fence on this one. We do the Santa thing, but it’s more packaged as a symbol of generosity. I have a great book about the real Saint Nicholas, the amazing man who kicked off the whole gift-giving gig many an eon ago. We don’t necessarily ‘promote’ Santa, but we don’t debunk either–the kids seem to pick up on the general marketing of the Santa story and then they begin to look for him in Scripture…and then the whole thing kind of settles. We talk about the reality of the spirit of a giving heart.

    Still, we’ve also had to clarify that other families handle it other ways–we’ve put the Santa issue up there with the ‘Where do Babies Come From’ issue–both are parent-only topics of discussion, with instructions to my kiddos that they are to zip-the-lip when it comes to Octamom Santa (and baby-making) theology….


  2. I totally agree with you on the wanting credit part. Everytime I left a present unwrapped “from HIM”, I was like, “But WE are the awesome gift givers!! Let’s tell him in a few years to thank US for the awesome toys we got them”.

  3. AMEN Jennie!!! WE do not do Santa at our house either. It has caused some conflict with the “outside” family though. We are still trying to find the best way to approach the whole subject. Last year Tanner said, “Mom, can I believe in Santa?” and I said, “You can do whatever you want Tanner. Will you be getting gifts from Santa?” Tanner, “No” okay then, we are settled. My parents think I am horrible and the worst parent ever not to allow/teach my kids about Santa. Oh well, I hated Christmas as a kid…whose fault is that?!?!?! LOL

  4. It’s all in how you choose to look at it, I guess.

    – It’s not materialistic unless you make it materialistic.

    -We have Santa but there is NO WAY anyone could tell me that it’s not about Christ in my home.

    – Needing all the credit? That’s NOT the spirit. What’s better than giving without receiving the credit?? That’s what it should be all about…. giving just for the sake of giving. And Santa shows how, and kids can follow lead. (Santa isn’t the only and main example, of course)

    Seems contradictory to me to say “it’s materialistic to have a Santa” and then say, “Give me me MEEEE all the credit”.

    Hope other opinions were welcome. 🙂

  5. Your points are all valid and good. Especially Christ being the center of Christmas and your children knowing that we give gifts because the wise men gave them to baby Jesus. And I don’t think there’s anything wrong with taking credit where credit is due (as far as the parent giving the gifts). So maybe I’ll just have one gift be from Santa, and all the rest can be from us and other family members. That way Santa doesn’t take center stage and get all the thanks for the Christmas we bought. Still contemplating on that.

    also, I had a friend a few years ago who gives her kids 3 gifts each. That’s it. If it was good enough for baby Jesus, it’s good enough for them. I like that idea too. It disgusts me when I see parents spending literally thousands of dollars on Christmas presents for little kids. I want my kids to look forward to Christmas, but not to have it be a materialistic free-for-all.

  6. Your reasoning is pretty much on par with our reasoning. We don’t “do Santa” around here either, never have. I am not particularly opposed, I think you can keep Santa low-key. But my husband was pretty adamant about it, especially because of the possibility of causing doubt in other areas (like our faith), when the truth was finally revealed. I tell my kids they BETTER NOT tell other kids, though.

  7. Hi Jenny! First time comment-leaver, here. We’ve always done Santa, and come to think of it, the best gifts are always from him! But in the back of my mind I always resented him for that!

  8. Since our kids are really little we have not even crossed that bridge yet, but I have to say that I don’t remember when, where, or how I found out about Santa. But I am not even sure that it was a big deal for me.(I mean I am not traumatized about it) My parents never made a really big deal about Santa, it was more about giving, and family.

    Also I just popped across something with a countdown, talk about trying to lay on the pressure. 41 days left.

  9. I LOVE the cartoon. LOLOL! It’s true, that is so convenient.

    We tell our kids when they are eight that Santa is a game. Because there is nothing more magical and delicious than the light in a 6 year-old’s eyes at Christmas time. And also because we are lucky to make it to eight before kids like yours tell kids like mine that they’d better stop using their imagination so much! 😛

    No, the real reason is because eight years old is when they really start to WANT to know the difference between what’s real and what’s make believe. Before that, they are happy little clams listening for reindeer paws. But if you don’t want to play, I won’t hold it against you. 🙂

  10. I was on the fence on this one, but my husband was all the way for Santa. Not over the top, he just didn’t think it was worth taking a stand on, so I deferred.

    One tradition we’ve had is that Santa only brings one gift, he doesn’t wrap, and my kids go through their things and leave toys and clothes under the tree on Christmas Eve for Santa to take with him to the kids whose parents can’t do anything for them. We’ve told them that that is who St Nicholas was really thinking of.

    I think as long as the message is clear about whose Birthday we’re celebrating it’s all good.

    I’m curious though, do you have an opinion on how your kids will handle it with their families? I’ve been thinking about how often I may need to keep my mouth shut as an MIL.

  11. I just stumbled onto your blog and have to say that you are totally right about Santa. For heaven’s sake, people…we’re LYING to our children and then expect them to believe us on everything else!

    Have said that, I would totally not do the Santa thing at my house if it wouldn’t wreck my marriage. That is how strongly my husband feels about it, and I’m nicer than he is. (and since you don’t really know me, I can say that because I know that you’ll never tell him I told you)

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