I catch a lot of flack from friends when I tell them we don't "do" Santa in our house. Mostly it's met with fear that I might let the truth slip to their own kids. Don't get me wrong, I don't hate Santa. I just don't lead my children to believe that he's a real dude. After all, he is a fictional character based on a real guy - Saint Nicholas. He was a wonderful, Godly man, and for his full story, go here. It's some fantastic history! And Santa Claus makes a great STORY. But that's all it is. Same as Frosty, the Gingerbread Man, and Rudolf. Here are some of my top reasons why we don't push the Santa agenda:
1. It's lying. I can't believe the lengths that some people go to to keep the lie going, either. I just can't do it.
2. It takes away from the real meaning of CHRISTmas - you know... the birth of our savior, Jesus Christ? And if you don't believe in that, I'm not sure why you are celebrating this holiday. I don't celebrate holidays that I don't fully believe in.
3. If I did choose to go along with the belief in a real Santa, what happens when they find out he's a big, fat phony? Will they also stop believing in the reality of Jesus, God, and the Bible stories we read? I'm not willing to take the chance.
4. I expect my children to behave at ALL times of the year, not just between Thanksgiving and Christmas. This is also the reason why I don't have an Elf on the Shelf (no matter how stinking CUTE he is and how much fun it would be to put him in different mischievous scenarios!).
5. If Santa only comes on Christmas Eve, that means that I have to either keep wrapped presents hidden, or bust my rear end to wrap everything that night and get it under the tree, only to be woken up at 6am by my eager children. I much prefer to wrap presents and put them under the tree to enjoy for a few days (maybe a week) ahead of time. Then I can relax, and enjoy the holiday with family.
6. I want credit! If I had to sneak out in the middle of the night on Black Friday and fight off 5 other moms to get THE gift for my child, I'm not letting some fake guy get all the credit! I did that, not him!
7. It's creepy. Some thug breaks into my home in the middle of the night through my chimney? Seriously? That's terrifying!
8. Our family is on a budget. We can't afford to buy our kids each a $300 gift. So, if they ask Santa for something we either cannot afford, or is out of stock in every store, what then? What will they learn when their friend gets that gift from Santa, but they didn't? Will they think they weren't good enough? Talk about disappointment!
Now, I'm sure I've really peeved some of you off with this post, and some of you may even be calling me a hypocrite right now because of the toy fairy (which has been gone for a while now - turns out that good old Love and Logic works much better) and the tooth fairy (which my children also know is not real, but since she's not taking anything away from their religious education, we play along with it - plus, do they really care who gives them money for teeth?). I have always taught my kiddos the difference between reality and fiction.
We do have multiple Santa decorations in our house, but it's really only because he's darn cute. We have snowman decor as well, but they also know those don't come to life. We visit Santa every year because it's fun, and we will do the same when we get to visit Mickey and the Disney Princesses when we finally go to Disney World. We read Santa stories along with Frosty, Rudolf, talking animals, the Old Woman Who Swallowed a Fly, and many other great make-believe literature. Most importantly, we read from the Bible - every night.
All in all, my main beef with Santa is that he tends to become the center of the holiday for many families, and his importance shadows the true reason for the season.
No worries to all of you Santa lovers out there, though. To each their own. I just wanted to voice my opinion and let everyone know my reasons WHY. I understand that all families are different and do things in their own way, and because of that, my kids know that some children do truly believe in Santa, and they are instructed to let them have that fantasy. My babies just get to know the truth and play along as they wish.
Oh - and to save me some time in the spring... Easter Bunny - Ditto
Merry CHRISTmas, everyone!