A little background here might be necessary. Never have two parents been so deliberate as Trace and I in trying to leave Santa and American commercialism out of Christmas. We just last year got our first tree, and that was only because Remy seemed so excited to have one. We do give gifts, but not to excess, and really try to emphasize that it's the giving that really makes the day. That is how we honor the birth of the Messiah. I didn't grow up believing in Santa, and once we became parents it just felt like lying, and we weren't willing to do that to our kids. When Remy has asked about Santa, upon seeing him in malls or movies, we just tell him that it's all pretend. He's just a man dressed up in a suit... some people like to pretend that he comes to their house... etc. Now we don't want to have the kid who ruins it for everyone, but at the same time it isn't for us.
So after what I shall call 'the incident' in the car, my immediate reaction was to email my mom about what a failure I'd been. My own son thinks Santa is coming! And she quickly reminded me that it's not my failure, but rather further proof that we live in this broken world among people who just haven't seen Him yet. I get so tired of this world sneaking into my home... is that selfish?
In the days since, I have found moments ripe with possibility to talk to Remy about ways we can celebrate Jesus' birthday. My boy does love a good birthday party! He decided that we need to take cupcakes down to the 'hungry guys' (we help feed the homeless guys downtown sometimes). He thought they might like party hats too, an idea that I thought might not fly so well, so I think I successfully talked him out of that.
And on the topic of Santa, why does it seem that I am the only person who thinks it's a bit creepy? If I were to tell you that some huge man in red velvet knows where you live and watches you all year long to see what you are doing. Then one night he comes and sneaks into your home, eats your cookies and milk, and leaves you gifts. Wouldn't you call the FBI or something!? I can't believe more children aren't terrified and traumatized!
Now I'd like to hear from you. How do you blend tradition and festivities without going overboard? How do you remain Christ-centered among a world of reindeer and presents?
"Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord."