Monday, October 18, 2010

The Santa Debate – Please Share Your Two Cents!

Hi guys!!!!!!! Before I ask you my question, can I just say that wow, I have reaaaaaaally missed blogging!  However, it also felt amazing to take a step back and just enjoy time with my little sister for the 4 days she was home.   While she was here she found her wedding dress and we picked out the bridesmaid dresses (I’m the matron {hate that word} of honor).  It was so great to see her and I already miss her like crazy.  :(  But at least I get to see her again at Thanksgiving! 

Oh and I also want to thank you all for staying in my absence.  I actually didn’t lose any followers, and for that I am *shocked*.  Thanks for sticking around!  :)


One of my all-time favorite movies as a kid.  I think I still know every line! 

My question today isn’t really earth-shattering, but it’s something I’ve been thinking about for months and it’s something I’d really like your opinion on:   What are your thoughts on incorporating Santa with Christmas? 

I realize to some of you this might seem ridiculous, because Santa = Christmas in a lot of people’s eyes.  However, Chris and I were both raised in fairly conservative Christian homes, and there wasn’t any Santa.  Ever.  Christmas was a celebration of Christ’s birth, and we got lots of presents, but we knew that every single one was from our mom and dad. 

I hated the fact that I knew there was no Santa Claus.  Hated it, hated it, hated it.  I was so jealous of my friends that got to get their pictures taken with him, and leave cookies and milk out, and try to get a glimpse of him sometime on Christmas Eve.  I hated that I knew a secret but couldn’t tell them (because I would have been in huge trouble), so they all were blissfully unaware and there I was, kind of on the “outside.” I felt so embarrassed, even as a little kid, when adults would inevitably ask me every December, “So, what’s Santa getting you for Christmas?”  and I would have to reply, “I don’t believe in Santa Claus.”  Talk about a mood-killer in the cereal aisle.  LOL!

I remember sneaking out of bed one Christmas Eve when I was 7 or 8 and standing by the window, just hoping that my parents were wrong and that Santa was actually going to come flying through the sky to my house.

My husband, on the other hand, liked knowing that Santa wasn’t real.  He thought Santa was stupid as a kid and he was proud that he knew the truth.  Ha! Boys!

I understand what my parents were trying to do.  They didn’t want to lie to us, and they wanted to keep Christmas about Jesus only.  I understand that, and I respect that.  I kinda thought that’s what I would always do with Luke……

Except I keep thinking about how fun it would be to leave the milk and cookies out with Luke.  And carrot sticks for the reindeer.  And then leave them half-eaten on the plate and the carrot sticks gone and see the magic in his eyes when he wakes up.  There is so little magic left in the world, you know?

I thought maybe I could do the Santa thing but just have him fill up the stockings (more like the tradition of Saint Nicholas), and then our kids would still know that their presents came from us. 

For the record, Chris isn’t crazy about the whole Santa thing still, but he’s not 100% opposed to it.  He does think that Santa shouldn’t get all the credit for the gifts, which I kinda agree with.  ;)

So……this is my dilemma!  Help!  I am SO curious to know what you do with your children (or what you plan on doing).  Even if you don’t have kids yet, I’m curious to know your opinion.  Did you believe in Santa?  If not, did you feel like you were missing out? I would SO appreciate your thoughts!!



P.S. This is SO not related at all but Sandy from Reluctant Entertainer is giving away an apron and copy of her book on her site today and since you get an extra entry if you blog about it I totally am since both of those things are on my Christmas list so why not try to get them for free and make a super-long run-on sentence while I’m at it?! :)


  1. Yay for fun with sisters and dress shopping! I don't think you'll be at all matronly as the matron of honor.

    As far as Santa goes... I was raised not believing in Santa Claus. Most of my friends also didn't believe in Santa, so it wasn't too hard for me. My parents believed that if they're going to give gifts at Christmas, they should receive the credit, not an imaginary fat elf. I know you'll emphasize Jesus over the excess often seen in Christmas.

    But there is something fun about the wonder of Santa's magic. I wouldn't be surprised if we play it by ear as my toddler grows up. She likes to pretend already. Why not pretend Santa comes down the chimney? If you don't make a huge deal about it, and say "yes, it's absolutely true, and so you must be a good little kid so Santa will bring you everything you write on a list and he won't bring you a lump of coal" I don't see the harm in pretending for a while.

  2. Ready? I'm about to write a confusing book! :)
    My husband grew up believing in Santa. His grandpa was so die-hard that he used to walk on the roof Christmas Eve so that my mother-in-law would believe. My husband's parents were that into it, but he still grew up believing in Santa.
    I don't remember ever believing. I was the youngest; my oldest sister was 14 when I was born, so it wasn't like I had siblings to feed off of. We still did the Santa stuff, though. I got my picture taken with him (knowing that he actually was a man my parents knew). I had presents from Santa (and from mom and dad, too...and the Santa ones were written in mom's handwriting). I left cookies and milk. I just knew, but it didn't take the fun away.
    We've talked about how we'll raise our daughter, too. My husband wants to convince her. I think we should just do the fun stuff and tell her the truth if she asks (in a gentle way, of course).
    In my humble opinion, Santa is a fun reminder of giving gifts and believing in the holiday spirit; however, the real reason in Christ, and that is the focus of Christmas. Does any of this make sense? :)

  3. I have often thought about this and this is the year for me to make a decision. I don't tell my kids about Santa but they get it from other kids and that is okay. We still believe in the spirit of Christmas and the magic but I want my kids growing up understanding the true meaning of Christmas. I never ask my kids what they want, because they get what I want to get them and for me it is all about the surprise of having no idea what you are getting. Last year, I remember there being so many gifts at the parents house and I remember thinking this is ridiculous. This is not why we give gifts. I think it is fine to do gifts and all but Christmas in its entirety is way too excessive and we really seem to be missing the point. Anyway, I don't care if they talk about Santa but I am quick to remind them why we celebrate Christmas. But I don't make Santa a big deal. Confusing and a bunch of rambling very sorry.

    Brooke@ Makin It domestic

  4. You can absolutely keep Christ in Christmas and still have the fun of Santa. :) Doggone it, I STILL BELIEVE IN SANTA! ;) Santa is the joy of sharing with others. He is that feeling you get when you give without expecting anything in return. He is the FUN in Christmas. My kids believe and they also are well aware of the true reason for the season.

    There is one thing I wish I had done differently. I wish we had given them only 3 gifts apiece from Santa. Upon his birth, the baby Jesus was brought gold, frankincense and myrrh. Why should my children receive more gifts than the Christ Child? It's another great way to incorporate the story of the Nativity into the Christmas celebration. You know that picture of Santa on bended knee, worshiping the Baby Jesus? THAT says it all. :)

    I'm sure you'll make the choice that is best for your family. :) And no matter what you decide, your child/children will adore you just the same. :)

  5. Like the other commenters said, you can most definitely have BOTH. I grew up knowing Santa wasn't real, but my parents still saved a few presents for Chrismas morning and signed them from being from Santa as well as the Stockings. Even though I knew it was really my parents, it was still fun. I've done the same with my kids. My oldest, who is 8, KNOWS that we are Santa, but I've explained that we help him because its all about the spirit of St Nicholas. She even wanted to leave cookies and milk out for him last year even knowing the truth. I think its good to give them a little magic, but I don't think its good to LIE and pretend that Santa is real when he isn't. I don't think its good for kids to believe that strongly in something that is unreal. THe gifts at Christmas are only a small part though, we also bake a Birthday Cake for Jesus for Christmas Eve dinner, so the focus at our house is more on the real reason than on the gifts. I think its a delicate balance that you have to figure out what works for you, but I'm sure you will! :-)

  6. Wow, thinking about Christmas already!? I still can't decide if or how we are going to celebrate Halloween! I grew up in a non-christian household, so their was no mention of God or Jesus, just Santa Clause. Now I am saved, and plan on celebrating my Lords birthday, but I still cherish the memory's that I have as a child and the excitment that I felt as a child getting to get presents, and imagining the reindeer, ect. (By the way, I loved the Santa Clause so much I saw it 5 times in the theatre, and have gone through 2 VHS's and 1 dvd so far)

    If your read Romans ch. 14 it talks about Christian liberties - about how when something isn't strictly forbidden in the Bible it falls to us to make a decision between ourselves and God about what we should do. And example in todays society is drinking alcohol - I have some christian friends that feel it is a sin to ever have a glass and that are strict teetotalers, and I have friends that think the alcohol itself isn't evil but that the excess consumption is. I've been struggling a lot about what to do with AJ when it comes to the holidays - having fond memories of my nonspiritual upbringing but wanting him to have so much more than I did.

    I finally decided that if it is something that isn't going to hurt his spiritual life, we are going to do it. We are going to tell him about St Nick. and the real story behind it as well; along with the story of the manger and Christ.

    I do my best to have the decorations around the house be geared toward Christ over St. Nick.

    I think the bottom line is whatever God wants you to do... do you feel uneasy about some of the traditions you'd like to start, or does God give you a peace that it's ok to do so?

  7. I never believed in Santa and it didn't ruin Christmas for me. It made me feel smarter and more mature than the other kids who did believe. Although my mom strictly warned me not to tell them to truth. (Wheres the fun there?!..haha)

    I never went Trick or Treating once in my whole life. That bothered me a little more than the Santa stuff. Sometimes I would have teachers who would say rude things to me because I wasn't allowed to do Halloween crafts, projects and things in elementary school. When it came to Santa-themed project my mom didn't care. So, it wasn't as bad. But jack-o-lanterns, black cats, and witch stuff was all STRICTLY forbidden!

    Still today I don't buy stuff with Santa on it. For me, I almost feel like Santa has come to represent all that is wrong with Christmas. I'd much rather focus on the real meaning of Christmas.

    With my (future) kids, I want to tell them the truth about Christmas, but maybe come up with new, fun traditions. I also agree that there is nothing wrong with playing long as they know that it is pretend.


I'd love to hear from you! Comments make my day! :) I generally respond to comments right here on my blog. If you have a more specific question for me, you are always welcome to e-mail me at blessedlifeblog{at}gmail{dot}com.