The Year Santa Came Early
I’m honestly not a big Christmas person. I like it fine, but even as a small child, Christmas was never my thing. That was Easter. I had stuffed animals, not dolls, and that whole giant bunny bringing you candy thing really did it for me. But, this is a post about Christmas, so I’ll stick with Santa (and Rudolph, who was my real favorite – see previous remarks about giant bunnies!).
When I met and married Mr. L, he already had two kids (and an ex-wife, but we won’t get into that). Our first Christmas as a new family meant that we had to figure out how to have a real Christmas with the kids (then four and seven) when their mother got them for Christmas Day. Luckily, Mr. L’s family is Scandinavian, and they always opened their presents on Christmas Eve, so we decided that would be our family tradition. We’d get Christmas Eve, opening the presents at night after dinner, and then the kids would go to their mother’s house to do presents with her on Christmas morning.
“But Santa doesn’t come ‘till we’re in bed,” the seven-year-old said. Ohhkay. Divorced parents Christmas take two.
“We’re going to talk to Santa,” we told the kids. “We’ll work something out.” They looked at us full of doubt, but let it go.
Skip to Christmas Eve: We had both kids, grandma and grandpa, and Mr. L and me. We’d had dinner, and everyone was settled in, opening presents from each other. While the very distracting joy of gift opening was occurring, Mr. L announced he was going to go make coffee. A few minutes later, there was stomping on the front porch, and a voice boomed out, “Ho, ho, ho! Merry Christmas!” Both kids stopped cold, their eyes growing to monumental proportions.
“Did you hear that?” the seven-year-old gasped.
All the adults in the room looked perplexed. “Hear what?” we asked innocently.
“It was Santa!” the four-year-old screamed.
“Really?” The adults asked.
“Maybe you’d better go see,” I suggested to my new stepdaughter. By this time Mr. L had wandered back in, cup of coffee in hand, a look of “what’s goin’ on?” on his face.
So, the kids rushed outside to the front porch, where they discovered a bag full of gifts and a note from Santa. They bought it completely, and the shrieking and hysteria that followed was the stuff family lore is made of.
Sadly, by the next year seven-year-old had forced the truth about Santa, and taken four-year-old along on her ride down reality lane, but for that one last, perfect Christmas, Santa showed a couple of kids who had gone through divorce and remarriage that he cared about them no matter whose house they were at, and that Dad and Stepmom loved them enough to get Santa himself to visit early.
If you could only celebrate one holiday what would it be?
Page Count: 754 pages
Publisher: C.P. Writes, LLC (November 20, 2014)
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Selena lives in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains and spends a hell of a lot of time at soccer games, on her laptop, and reading. She requires a Mocha Latte every day to function, keeps a goldendoodle at her feet most of the time, and has more kids than she or Mr. Laurence know what to do with.
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