12 December 2007

I never believed in Santa Claus


My first Christmas memory is finding my presents (accidentally, of course!) and thinking, "Oh, that's where they are this year." I do not, never ever, remember believing in Santa Claus. He was persona non grata in our house growing up. Mother seemed to have a personal vendetta for the the red and white jolly little old man. Instead of Santa Claus, we did a different country's Christmas tradition every year. One year, we had clogs instead of stockings. I got to be Saint Lucia one year with the pretty white dress and poinsettia wreath in my hair (I think we left off the candles) and bring sweet rolls around to everyone in the morning. As was preached in our house: Saint Nicholas was a nice man, but in NO WAY to be associated with SANTA CLAUS that conniving mercantilistic creation of Coca-Cola (the Devil's Very Own Beverage).

That said, I still enjoyed the silly Christmas movies with Santa and Rudolf the Red-Nosed Reindeer and I don't remember trampling on the precious beliefs of my friends. Maybe I was smug in my knowledge, but I didn't ruin it for them!

I do confess to never really liking 'Twas the Night Before Christmas. (Now The Nightmare Before Christmas is an entirely different story!)

When it came to how I was to bring up my own kids, I had a relaxed attitude towards Santa. If relatives want to give "Santa" gifts, that's fine. Just don't expect me to take the time and effort to explain who he is and what to expect. The Dude has been young enough to not really take notice of the Man with the White Beard.

Until this year.

One day last week our neighbor innocently asked him what he wanted Santa to bring him this year. He stopped pedaling, looked up at her, and asked, "Who's Santa?" She turned an incredulous look on me, and I... started explaining.

Later, the Dude asked me about this Santa character, and I knew the Moment of Decision had come whether to impale myself on the North Pole or not. With a bit of mom-istic license, I told him about St. Nicholas being a man who was trying to be like Jesus and treat the children nicely (the Dude likes this story a lot right now), and so he gave presents to them. He died a long time ago, but people like to remember him as Santa Claus. How long that explanation will last, time will tell. At least it got us through one Christmas Party!

I do lament the secularization and commercialization of Christmas. The tradition of the Christchild (Christkindlein - eventually Kris Kringle) giving presents is a sad one to have lost. In (mild) protest, I don't think I'll be perpetuating a belief of Santa in our home.

So, Santa, St. Nick, Kris Kringle: you are welcome in my home, but you must be de-deified to enter. There's really only room for one Deity this Holiday.

10 December 2007

You know you're sick when....

After your bath to clean the puke off, you wrap up in your towel and fall asleep on the bathroom floor. You know your mommy's sick too when she just leaves you there.

05 December 2007

I'm a Mean Mommy

Today while the Dude and the Big O were playing, they decided to start playing Advanced Peek-a-boo, and of course, I was the audience. I spiced things up by lunging to tickle them before they could hide under their blankets again. The Dude protested, saying, "Don't be a Mean Mommy!"

I reclaimed my seat on the couch and resigned myself to making silly faces at them as they surfaced for air. Until Big O exclaimed, "I want you to be a Mean Mommy!"

I considered this my license to tickle them both mercilessly.

It is beyond wonderful to have the energy to play with the kids again! (The neighbors might not be so appreciative - the joyful shrieking has incrementally increased according to how recovered I'm feeling.)

If you're planning on wishing me a Happy Birthday,

you're too late.