Monday, December 21, 2009

Christmas Magic.

There was nothing quite like being a child and going to sleep on Christmas Eve, knowing that Santa Claus was going to slide down my chimney, leave me a special gift and eat the cookies I left out for him. It wasn't so much the gifts that I looked forward to, but the thought of him quietly marching around in my house while I slept, trying his hardest not to wake the children, while his herd of reindeer and sleigh waited outside. It was absolutely magical.

My parents went out of their way to strengthen our childlike fascination with Jolly Old Saint Nick. One year, Mom dipped our dogs paws in ink and let him run through our long tiled hallway. Then she threw some hay on the ground to make it look like reindeer had been traipsing through out house. I will never forget the excitement my brother, myself and my cousins felt that morning. Rudolph had been IN OUR HOUSE! That morning was magical.

Another year, I desperately wanted a chalk board for Christmas. I begged Santa for one in my letter to him. Sure enough, Christmas morning came, I wiped my eyes, walked into the living room, and lo and behold, there stood my beautiful tall standing chalkboard. And on it, was a letter from Santa himself, written to me in chalk. I never wanted to erase it! I cried I was so excited. That day was magical.

One year we had Christmas at my Uncle and Aunt's house and all of us children slept in the Master bedroom. We laid still in the bed, giggling and talking about Santa when all of a sudden, we heard BELLS on the ROOF! We screamed and jumped around and then buried our faces into our pillows trying our hardest to go to sleep, because we thought if we were awake, he might not come in. That night was magical.

Each year we wrote letters to him, telling him what was on our wish list. We would show them to our Mom (of course), and then throw them in the fire. Mom said the letter would burn into tiny pieces and blow up out of the chimney, form again in the air and float over to the North Pole. That made perfect sense in my little mind.

I have countless stories of my encounters with Santa, and when I sit and recount them, I get giddy all over again. My house felt different on Christmas morning. It felt different because because I knew deep down in the pit of my heart, that Santa had been there. I walked around from room to room, wondering if he had been in there or if he had petted our dog or left his hat on accident. I wondered if he peeked in on me as I slept. I liked to think he did. I loved him SO much.

I didn't take the news of Santa not being real very well. Actually, I flung myself in the floor and screamed "you're lying, you're lying, I KNOW HE'S REAL!" I'm telling you, I loved him! Before I found out he wasn't real, the older I grew, I started to doubt the whole thing, but I quickly brushed that out of my mind and clung to the magic.

My parents made certain that we NEVER put Santa Claus in the same category as God. And when I think back on my belief and love for Santa, I can distinctly remember that in my mind, he was never compared to God. My childlike mind took things for how they were. God is God, and there is only one God. Santa, well, he's just Santa. Nothing like God. He's just a kind man out to make children happy. And even with the hoopla over Santa every year, it NEVER took away from Jesus Christ. My brother and I grew up knowing exactly why we celebrate Christmas, and we had so many traditions and things to emphasize that every single year. Believing in Santa Claus was simply an aspect of the celebration. But we always, always knew What and Who we were celebrating. My parents did an excellent job instilling the birth of our Saviour in our minds and never taking the Christ out of Christmas. Christmas was absolutely every year JESUS CHRIST centered.

I'm 26 years old and I still love Mr. Claus. I cry every year when I watch The Polar Express, and when I hear a jingle bell ring, I am transported to those memories as a child that I so cherish.

I love his story.

The idea of a big jolly man in red who is so very generous and loving toward children. The idea of him giving gifts to the needy children by throwing packages in their windows. A man who spent his entire year creating and fashioning toys for all the children in the entire world, and delivering them all in one night!

I know many stories of people in my life that had very sad childhoods, and Santa was one of the only happy things in their memories. And some of those, who believed SO hard, they saw him flying through the sky. In their little worlds, where love and affection was lacking, they found such love and magic in Santa. He let them forget about their worries as they waited in anticipation for him every year.

Santa Claus is the greatest fictional character in the history of the world, and his story has brought joy to so many children for hundreds of years.

And this year, after many years away, he's coming back to our house. There are children in the house again and the magic is resurfacing! It's been far too long, Santa Dear. Oh, how I've missed you.

23 comments:

  1. Such a touching blog post! Your a very gifted writer. Your post brought back so many of my own childhood Christmas memories, and my love for Santa as well.
    I hope you have a "Majical" Christmas this year, and that Santa is good to you and yours!

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  2. Love the post! Santa will also be visiting our house =)

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  3. Such wonderful memories. Very well said. I never understood people who said that if the kids find out Santa isn't real they will think we are lying about Jesus.

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  4. Such a beautiful post! I am so looking forward to creating that same magic for my baby girl. It's such an amazing blessing to see the world through our child's eyes!

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  5. Awww... the chalk board part made me tear up a bit. Then again, I am pregnant, so everything makes me tear up!

    How fun that you get to start your own Santa traditions with your Levi!

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  6. Whitney, I was going to post about this EXACT same thing tomorrow!!! :D Great minds think alike, I guess! :D I love all of your stories, because they are so similar to mine! Even as an adult, I LOVE the magic as Santa, even as I have been allowed to play him on occasion! I am so thankful that my parents, like yours, made his story so real. It is such a special part of Christmas! :D

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  7. Thank you so much for posting this. I've had people tell me that I'm lying to my son and I'm not as good of a Christian because I let him (encourage him) to believe in Santa Clause. But in my mind I have the same sort of wonderful memories you have. And even when I found out he wasn't real (I was sorely dissapointed) it didn't change the special magical memories I had. Not to mention I got to help my dad ring bells on the roof for my little sister and brother. I was then part of the conspiracy to make their Christmases just as magical as mine had been. And this year my son is 2 and I don't know who is more excited about Christmas him or me.

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  8. Whitney - thanks for posting this. My husband and I both grew up not "allowed" to believe in Santa. My dad was quite legalistic and actually called him Satan Claus - which is HORRIBLE. Now that we have a son together we've been wondering how to go about this, since we never did the Santa thing. And of course, we want Christmas to continue to be about Jesus and His birth and what that means to us. After reading your post I think I defeinitely want Santa to be a part of our celebration of Christmas. IN hopes that he too can look back and remember this magical time of year with fond memories too. (o:

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  9. Sigh...this made my heart well up. I honestly think our moms are sisters. I absolutely adore Santa Claus. He is precious. I know Weebers is going to LOVE HIM, too. Can't wait to see the joy on his face.

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  10. This post brought tears to my eyes-so well written!

    My parents also did fun things like that...they'd take a door of the fireplace and say Santa must have broke it on his way in, my grandparents would go on the roof and make all kinds of noise and then Santa would walk in the front door for a visit...it was all great and I hope I can re-create some of that magic for my own kids someday.

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  11. I love this post! I feel the same way about Santa, in fact I wish I had never learned the truth :(. I have a 2 year old, and it is so exciting to talk with him about Santa, he cannot wait for Santa to come to our house. I also love your advent posts, we are always talking about Jesus's Birthday too! Merry Christmas, I know you will make it very magical for Levi!

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  12. Oh how I love this post! I have a children's book that talks about how Santa worships Jesus. It is a beautiful story. I can't remember the name of it, but I think you would love it. I will try to remember to send you the name of the book.

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  13. SUCH sweet stories!!! I love Santa and all my memories as a kid! I have a feeling Mr.Levi is going to have some good ones to tell one day, too!

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  14. What a sweet post! The letter on the chalkboard is just too adorable!

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  15. Beautiful post!

    I know you get many of these - but I have given you an award. Please check out my blog! Merry Christmas!

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  16. I too resisted learning the truth about Santa (or Father Christmas as we always called him). I LOVED the magic that my mother weaved around Christmas and your post really resonated with me. The magic is back and then some now that I have children of my own. I am so excited to create their special childhood memories. I'm not sure who is more excited this Christmas, me or the children.

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  17. Thanks for the "memories." We had them in my house growing up and I've instilled those in my children's lives. We have a "Birthday Cake" every year celebrating the birth of our Lord. Christ is never left out of our Christmas! Levi is one lucky, blessed boy!

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  18. I recently wrote a post about Santa and how magical it is. I loved this post! There's so much debate about it, but I say, let kids be kids and believe in the magic! Life is too short and they grow up too fast. I love your blog! :)

    Here's the post I wrote:

    http://www.ourhappilyeverafters.com/2009/12/parenting-to-make-believe-or-not.html

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  19. You put my thoughts into words exactly!!

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  20. Whit, I will never forget all the magical memories we had on Christmas Eve and Christmas morning. Every year I think of us laying in my mom and dad's bed and we absolutely heard him on the roof!!!! You and I loved our stockings more than anything!! All the fun bath stuff and little girly things. I was actually just telling Azem about our matching PJs. I think I looked forward to seeing what kind of jammies we were going to be wearing just as much as did opening presents!! Oh, the memories. Wonderful memories that can never be taken away. Including the memories of remote control cars slamming into our little legs as we innocently tried to bake a cake in our EasyBake ovens!

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  21. With your enthusiasm about the holidays little Levi is sure to have so much fun!

    P.S. I decided to make a blog. You make it seem so entertaining so I thought I'd give it a try.

    -heather

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  22. What a wonderful post..made me think about my favorite Christmas memories! :)

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May the Lord bless you and keep you safe today! Thanks for the comment, friends! :)

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