Keeping It Real (Santa, of course)

As I’ve mentioned previously, keeping Santa real in my house has gotten kind of elaborate.

Ironically, I don’t EVER recall believing in Santa as a kid. It just wasn’t something my mom encouraged. I’ve only tried to make Santa real for my kids because I thought it was what my husband wanted.

With no real experience of how normal families keep Santa alive in their homes, I kind of invented stuff as I went.

how to keep santa real

(updated December 2014: my sons have requested that I clarify. They no longer believe in Santa. They now claim that they never did and were just pretending… because they thought I still believed. #smh)

Ten Ways to Keep Santa Real

Keeping it real - Santa ate the gingerbread house

  1. Everyone knows that Santa takes a bite of cookie and drinks a sip of milk, right?  Well, at my house he gets a little crazy.  He’s on a sugar high or something.  Last year, he hacked off half of the gingerbread house and left a note explaining that the elves were hungry.   (recall we were in a hotel room at the time, that isn’t my actual carpet!)

  2. I’ve seen the idea where you cut out boot-print stencil and use it to leave glittery “boot prints” to show where Santa has walked.  We did that, only I used powdered sugar boot prints because boys don’t “do” glitter.

  3. Even more fun than the powdered sugar foot prints?  Let Santa’s reindeer tear up a few bushes by getting tangled in your outdoor Christmas lights.  Or just toss a big branch in the front yard.  When the kids see it, point up at the nearby tree and say “wow – Santa barely made it over the tree!”

  4. When we move, we always get a form letter from Minerva J Elf.  She is in charge of “chimney verification.”   The kids are happy to see  that they new chimney is “Santa Certified” and ready for Christmas Eve.

  5. When we travel, we get a form letter from Olivia R Dear.  She’s handles gift forwarding and chimney alternatives.  I’ve sent pretend emails to Olivia requesting that Santa deliver gifts via our oven, to the bathtub, or wherever it was the kids thought was appropriate.

  6. One year, Santa left his hat on our fireplace.  My kids were worried, so they asked me to ship it back to Santa.  I did (ok, honestly, i packed it in the Christmas decoration box.  shhh!)  Santa sent them back a thank you letter from a tropical island.

  7. Santa delivers gifts for every member of our household, not just the kids.  No matter who is at our house, they get a gift from Santa on Christmas morning. Sometimes, they get a flashlight. But it’s the thought that counts, right?

  8. I have different wrapping paper for Santa than for the gifts we give each other.  Santa uses red and white striped paper, just like you see in Polar Express.

  9. When my kids ask for stuff that is too expensive or change their minds too close to Christmas, they are free to send Santa a letter with the request.  Santa writes them back and explains the situation and gently tells them “no”.  Sometimes it’s a toy shortage caused by a blizzard.  Sometimes, Santa has run out of room on his sleigh.   Sometimes, the next option is best.

10. Last, when my kids are being greedy little snots, they have received an official “warning letter” from the North Pole.  The letter informs them that they are in danger of losing the Christmas spirit. They are offered the chance to become official Santa’s Helpers by performing a great act of charity. Being an official Santa Helper for the year offers immunity for small infractions and guarantees that they will keep their Christmas spirit.  So far, they’ve taken up the challenge every year.  We find a service project and do it. In exchange, Santa leaves them a thank you note and a small certificate.

How do you keep the spirit of Santa alive in your home?

10 ideas to bring Santa to life in your home

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Susan Baker
I have a passion for encouraging weary worn out mothers to find joy in everyday motherhood and peace in unlikely places. I have two elementary school boys, one nerdy husband, and two cats. I have a strange fascination for bad puns, the color pink, socks, and books. I worry about running out of toilet paper, wine, and chocolate.. I serve an amazing God. I live an ordinary life filled with wonder.
Susan Baker
Susan Baker

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