Why We Don’t Do Santa Anymore

Why We Don’t Do Santa Anymore

Honesty is something that I try very hard at, especially with my children. I want them to know that they can always trust me and believe what I say is true.

A couple years back, though, it slapped me in the face . . . my eldest son, who at the time was just six years old, came running in from playing with a friend and told me that I was growing poison in our garden. He was adamant that my newly sprouting cilantro was poisonous because his friend told him that it was. I told my concerned six-year-old that, no, in fact, it was not poisonous and was an herb used in food and cooking. He was determined and informed me that it was poisonous. I finally got him to stop yelling at me and told him that no, it was not poisonous but not only that, I would never lie to him, and he can trust me. 

Santa.

Immediately Santa popped into my head. I will never lie to you . . . unless it’s little fibs about Santa.

I knew in my heart of hearts that I didn’t want to tell him any tall tales about Santa and wanted him to form his own opinion on the matter, but I also didn’t want him to miss the excitement of Christmas morning and see the tree packed with neatly wrapped presents and the ever-exciting new bike sitting by the fireplace ready to ride. So, I started answering his questions with an open-ended question: “What do you think?” I would nod along, never affirming or denying his thoughts. But after that poisonous cilantro incident, I became much more aware of being honest with my children. I want them to trust me and know that they can come to me for honest, real answers. When they ask me about Jesus, I want them to know that He is real and everything in the Bible happened, not just a tall tale that someone made up. 

A friend of mine shared her experiences with her parents and Santa and I will never forget it. She was very much like my oldest son: quick, smart, keen, observant, and literal. Her parents always told her about Santa and how he would deliver presents to good girls and boys, how he would fly around the world quick as light and would eat everyone’s sweetly decorated cookies and drink the cold glass of milk . . . oh and don’t forget about the reindeer! They always enjoyed their carrots, too! But when she found out the truth, she started contemplating everything her parents had told her . . . “Well, if Santa is fake, is Jesus? Is Mary and Joseph? What about Adam and Eve?”

Boy, that hit home. I don’t want my kids to think that I fib and tell lies to them and exaggerated truths. But again, I wasn’t quite ready to throw Santa out to pasture either. 

Last summer, my then seven-year-old asked more questions about Santa. Honestly, at this point I was ready to just sit him down and tell him the truth. I was tired of the litany of questions and smiling and nodding and just going with it. Yet again I asked him, “What do you think?” To my surprise he said, “I think moms and dads leave the presents under the tree and say that it is from Santa.” 

YES! 

This time I replied, “You’re right, dear.” He wasn’t shocked, disappointed, or upset. He simply replied, “I thought so.” 

I began really contemplating Santa and the Elf of the Shelf . . . why do we do all of this as Christians? Christmas is not about Santa or the Elf on the Shelf . . . it is about God sending His Son to earth, born in a manger to one day take our punishment for sin on the cross. Yet Santa and the elf get almost an entire month of fanfare when Jesus gets one day. We tell our kids to “watch out” because the elf will relay info to Santa . . . how about they just be “good” because we are watching and God is, too? And not only are we just fibbing about Santa one time – it is drawn out to such great extents: moving the elf daily, dragging out about how Santa is watching, leaving cookies and milk . . . I’ve done it, too! I even wrote a letter from Santa to my son! But again, this has been a work in my heart, and we felt moved as parents. And to continue to do it just because it is a “tradition” just doesn’t fly with me anymore. My kids will have a wonderful and joyous Christmas regardless . . . and Santa doesn’t get any of the credit for the awesome gifts they receive (haha!). I took my boys to get pictures with Santa this year for the pure sake of lining up the photos to see how they have grown, but not because of belief . . . and honestly, this is probably our last year.

I want to remind my children that Jesus came as a baby, held tightly by his mother, to save the world from sin so we may live in Heaven with God forever. In addition, this verse hits home: “The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.”

The Bible is true. Jesus is true. God is true. Everything that we read in the Bible happened and it is real. 

I want my children to remember that when we read the Bible, that it is real. That it is true. I want what I say to matter to my kids. I want them to know that mommy tells the truth. So, when they ask the hard questions, even if it is awkward or hard to say aloud, I will say it. I will tell the truth because that is what they need. The world is sinful and already full of mistruths and lies. I want them to know that they can come to me to feel safe and secure. By lying to them about the little things, I am not being the example that I want them to be to others one day. So, when they ask if a shot is going to hurt, I say, “Yes, it will. But it will be temporary and won’t hurt for long.” One day, when they ask about where babies come from, I will tell them the truth and use the actual words of the body parts. I will have the uncomfortable discussions because I want them to come to me to find the answers instead of asking their confused cilantro-is-poisonous friends. 

Not for one second do I judge ANYONE for doing Elf on the Shelf or Santa – this is just something that has been on my mind, and I wonder if you will pray about it yourself. We can still enjoy Christmas and all its magic without believing that Santa is the one providing it. If we say that Jesus is the reason for the season – than let’s act on it! Let our homes, our actions, the way we live show that we are Jesus followers, not the worlds. No judgement here – I promise! I share all of this with you to just stir some thoughts and questions that stirred in my heart: Why do we still do Santa? The Elf on the Shelf? Is it purely because of tradition? The kids will be sad? Christmas won’t be as “magical”? I can attest, after not doing Santa last year and now this year that Christmas is so much more magical, special, humbling, and awesome. Jesus is awesome!

May you all have a very blessed Christmas!

What’s Up Wednesday: December 2020

What’s Up Wednesday: December 2020

Happy LAST Wednesday of 2020!!! WE MADE IT!

It’s the last Wednesday of the month – my What’s Up Wednesday post – where I link up with Mix and Match Mama and share all the things! It’s a little food, a little family, a little what we’re doing, a little what we’re watching and a little bit of everything else, all in one post.

So let’s look at December 2020!

WHAT WE’RE EATING THIS WEEK:

Sunday I made a big batch of veggie enchiladas (cheese and regular flour tortillas for the boys; no cheese and Siete almond flour tortillas for me) that will give us leftovers for lunch and dinner Monday, Tuesday I am making a new recipe from Deliciously Ella – her Eggplant Moussaka with leftovers Wednesday, Thursday we’re making homemade pizzas and Friday I am making another new Deliciously Ella recipe – Eggplant Lentil Bolognese.

WHAT I’M REMINISCING ABOUT:

Christmas! I LOVED our special, low-key Christmas! We stayed in PJs all day, watched ALL the Christmas movies, played games, ate too many homemade sweets, and lounged around. It was perfect!

WHAT I’M LOVING:

I am loving Danielle Walker’s Celebrations cookbook this season! I made quite a few of her recipes for Christmas and the week leading up to Christmas, but mostly I am loving her Peppermint Hot Cocoa recipe! I add a little coffee and homemade marshmallows and I’ve got my own healthier Starbucks Peppermint Mocha!

WHAT WE’VE BEEN UP TO:

Well I was busy all last week getting things pre-baked/cooked for Christmas so I wouldn’t have to do much on Christmas Day; we finalized and sent the January issue of Frisco STYLE to the printer; we started back with homeschool work Monday and started week 23 out of 35 so we are getting closer to the end (!); and trying to squeeze in some reading here and there. I finished these two books just before Christmas:

and working on finishing this one:

I am also working on blog posts for the New Year and just doing the everyday mom things! 😉

WHAT I’M DREADING:

Not so much dreading, but sad Christmas is over. It always comes so fast and goes so fast. Even though I treasured every minute leading up to it – it just goes in a blink! So I am having a little post-Christmas blues and sad to put the tree away … but also looking forward to it because my house will be clean again! 😉 It’s a bunch of mixed emotions over here!

WHAT I’M WORKING ON:

Blog posts, February issue of Frisco STYLE, getting March article ideas generated, homeschooling and trying to carve out some time to work on my book. I think I have a better idea of how I want my book to be written, thus I have a lot of re-working and re-organizing to do, but text-wise, my book is about 60-70% complete. Still trying to figure out how I want to go about publishing (any ideas and personal experiences are much appreciated!).

WHAT I’M EXCITED ABOUT:

Photo by Alex Fu on Pexels.com

Stephen and I have made some short-term and long-term goals and we are working towards those. I am excited to see how it all pans out and praying for God’s provision and guidance, as some of these goals/dreams are pretty big!

WHAT I’M WATCHING/READING:

As stated above, I am reading the second book in the Winter Street collection, but next on my cue is American Dirt and The Daniel Dilemma.

We have finished ALL the series it seems, the latest being Queens Gambit, but we anxiously await Wednesday nights to watch The Challenge! We love the Challenge and so glad it’s back!

WHAT I’M LISTENING TO:

You know I love podcasts and currently listening to the Moms Struggling Well podcast, but I also ask Alexa everyday to play ‘Hallelujah’ by Carrie Underwood and John Legend…it is magical!

WHAT I’M WEARING:

Pajamas…alllll daaaaay.

Haha! Seriously, I am wearing pajamas most of the day and only change when I am going to leave the house or ride the Peloton. Otherwise – it’s pajamas!

WHAT I’M DOING THIS WEEKEND:

Editing! February articles will start coming in this weekend and early next week so I will be editing those plus we will be packing up Christmas.

WHAT I’M LOOKING FORWARD TO NEXT MONTH:

Everything! Haha! It is a new month and a new year and lots to look forward to! January means we are THAT much closer to warmer weather and summer boating! 😉 Haha!

WHAT ELSE IS NEW:

The day after Christmas we drove around to look at Christmas lights and we made sure to see the house that was filmed for the ‘Great Christmas Light Fight’ … it was crazy! There were people directing traffic plus cones all down the street to keep people from parking in neighbors driveways. It was nuts! 10,000 of the lights were actually hot glued to the house but in all, there were 70,000 lights! It was a perfect ending to Christmas!


    December is a wrap! How was your month? Share below!

    Have a blessed rest of the year!