I’ve never been wholly down with the whole Santa thing, the least of which because I think the materialism of the holiday is indoctrinated so concretely (not to mention so early) that way. I try – like most parents I know – to teach my kids to be kind, generous people. But the holidays just seem so danged commercialized, and it’s hard to keep focus. I know there are plenty of options for charity and selflessness, but it still often seems to be so, well, tax deductive, and I’m not so sure we haven’t bastardized the entire point by channeling it to a one-month period in the whole year. People need clothing in June, as well, as far as I can see. And for a year or two I tried to muster up the whole Jesus/reason/season vs Santa=satan anagram, but like I’ve since admitted, in the end that indoctrination wasn’t my bag either.

Especially because I could take Jack to church to learn about baby Jesus and then promptly go into the lobby to sit on Santa’s lap.

But I digress.

The truth is I’ve been secretly stoked in the past that Lo was too young, and Jack just never seemed to care, about Santa or the whole production of Christmas. We ran around like chickens with our heads cut off trying to appease family expectations, but overall we didn’t do nearly as much as most Americans seem to during this time. The kids got a shitton of gifts, and many hours were consequently spent donating old toys, but to date they really hadn’t totally lost their minds about wanting things. Mostly because they have no real idea of want.

But my blessedly procrastinated reprieve is over, and at four and six the kids have now fully embraced that bountiful benefactor of booty. No pretense for goodwill or good behavior, Christmas has simply and unabashedly become the ticket to the goods. Jack wants a Lego set that happens to be FOUR HUNDRED DOLLARS. He has no idea of what the cost really means, he just wants it because he thinks it’s cool. But ole St. Nick (and Toys R Us) have full-on convinced my sweetly gullible -and literal- child that all he has to do is write it down on the list and voila! it will be produced.

Because that’s what SANTA DOES, RIGHT?

So what do I do when he’s upset I can’t get him a FOUR HUNDRED DOLLAR Lego set? Tell him it was because he wasn’t good enough? That there was a shortage of plastic up North? I have no idea. But we’ll figure it out because we always do.  And he’ll survive because he’s a champ.

And please don’t fully misunderstand me, I’m not really on the train to Cynicalville. I do actually like the holiday season because I get to see my family and friends more, and that always makes me happy. But it’s a hard balance for me as a mother, and I want to do better for my kids.

[I also want a law that declares Christmas music illegal until December 20th. Especially that creepy making-out-with-Santa-song. I mean really, how many confusing messages can we possibly send this time of year?! But I digress again.]

So because our ridonkulously overwhelming and draining year is over, I resolve to expand my kids’ horizons and attempt to dismantle the materialism they swim in so comfortably. Or at least temper it with some of the kindness and giving I’ve seen them possess in large quantities. I look forward to it – it will be good for all of us. And now that I’ve also purged my bah humbuggery for the season, I can happily post the letters the kids wrote today, because all other tiring issues aside, I think they’re hysterical, and the kids will never know they are skipping the mailbox and going into my treasure box.

Welcome to parenting, right?

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Dear santa.

I want for chrismrs the Legos set 7627 Indiana Jones and the Temple of the Crystal Skull. I would also want the Lego Indiana Jones 2 video game. I want the Legos Star Wars Death Star I want the Ewok set.

Love Jacoby

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Dear Santa,

I would like a dolly to name Lorelei please. And also cute little puppy dogs. And a baby pig for Christmas. And I want a baby giraffe and a baby puppy dog and a little baby giraffe. So I want that. Please. I want to have a baby puppy dog. And a baby ricenocerous. And a bottle for the baby rosernous.

I love you and thank you,

Lorelei Elizabeth

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Happy Holidays, friends. 😉

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