Archive for December 19th, 2018

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Dec
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12.19.18 … “Happy Christmas to all and to all a goodnight.”

Christmas Tradition # 11: Santa Claus, his elves and his reindeer, the Grinch and The Whos Down in Whoville and the array of characters in the cultural Christmas stories

I’ve known who Santa Claus was since I was 3. So I never remember believing. But I BELIEVE.

My dad dressed up as Santa and visited with friends and family and hospitals and community centers, whoever asked him after Thanksgiving. And then on Christmas Eve we traveled Atlanta delivering presents and reading ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas. He brought laughter and joy to many. And then the next day, on Christmas, he’d put the fat man suit on one more time and visit Mae. Mae had been his childhood nanny from age three, a second mom, and our beloved housekeeper and babysitter.

I loved it, my mom not so much. We used to tease him that we were going to bury him in the suit, but we did him one better, the epitaph on his grave reads “and to all a good night.”

And when it came time for me to create Santa for my children, I never worried if my children knew or believed. I just wanted them to BELIEVE in the spirit of Christmas. I didn’t trek them to the best Santa for their picture with Santa, although I made the effort. I tried to create my home as a place for wonder and awe. But the 90s was a time of great commercialism and I knew that another family would do Santa bigger. So I hoped to create a strong sense of family and sharing. So my mantle became my home’s shrine to cultural Christmas. I hung the stockings with care.

And my image for Santa? The Coca-Cola Santa, of course. It’s very appropriate that a commercial Santa controls my image. Along with cookies, my Santa needs a Coke.

What about the other cultural Christmas characters? I enjoy them all. I enjoy the elves, Rudolph and the other reindeer, the Grinch, Max and The Whos, Frosty, Rudolph, Nutcracker, etc., etc. And they all share a spot on my mantle and some on my tree.

“Happy Christmas to all and to all a good night.”

And I give a lot of underwear at Christmas. 😉

12.19.18




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