Did not Inform Children About Santa; What Christmas Is Like With out Him


  • When my daughter was born, my husband and I made a decision we would not elevate our youngsters to imagine in Santa. 
  • I did not need Christmas to be all about presents, and letting her sit in a stranger’s lap felt mistaken. 
  • As an alternative, we bake gingerbread cookies, have a vacation photograph day, and attend Christmas Eve service. 

On my daughter’s first Christmas, my husband and I made a giant determination: Our household wasn’t going to do the “Santa Claus factor.”

It wasn’t a tough selection for me: Once I was rising up, my mother did not put a lot emphasis on St. Nick, so I wasn’t significantly connected.

In addition to, my husband and I had been discussing parenting priorities and the way we deliberate to lift our youngsters since our daughter’s beginning — weekly allowance: sure; contact sports activities: no. Name me a “Grinch,” however I assumed a number of the Santa traditions despatched children the mistaken messages.

We needed our daughter to really feel safe at house, so it appeared counterintuitive to show her {that a} unusual man might — and would — sneak in by way of the chimney every year. Likewise, I needed to instill a wholesome sense of boundaries, particularly with strangers, so encouraging my child to sit down on a stranger’s lap on the mall did not appear fairly proper both. Plus, I by no means needed Christmas to be too gift-focused, so educating my children that toys had been free, ample, and magically delivered appeared to overlook the mark.

Now, three years later, now we have a rising toddler, a child lady, and a singular, Santa-free vacation custom. To date, I am pleased we have caught with the plan — however bucking a Christmas custom is not all the time simple.

Here is what it is like being a Santa-free household:

Speaking about St. Nick could be difficult

I am the primary to confess our observe could make the vacation awkward at instances. Not like Jewish or Muslim children, my ladies do not have a group that equally skips Santa. In truth, my in-laws’ house decor closely options the “head elf” throughout this time of 12 months and he is a giant a part of my children’ and their cousins’ lives. Father Christmas even visits our toddler’s preschool.

Most individuals assume we partake in Santa traditions, so, when different adults ask my daughter, “What’s Santa going to carry you for Christmas?” I have to clarify why she appears to be like so confused.

We’re additionally attending to the stage the place my oldest is round different children who discuss St. Nick. I definitely do not need to inform her to lie, however I am afraid that if she lets the key slip, different mother and father will throw sweet canes at me.

I really feel like I am fostering honesty

Whereas being a Santa-less household comes with some awkwardness, it is comforting that I will not must have the “Santa speak” with my children in a couple of years. I hate the thought of being dishonest and I need to educate my ladies to belief me and allow them to know I will all the time inform them the reality.

I could not get to see the twinkle in my children’ eyes after they discuss flying reindeer, however I wish to suppose that that is one brick in a basis of parental belief that can make my life simpler all through my children’ lives.

Going Santa-less has pressured us to create different traditions

Whereas I do not significantly miss the person within the pink go well with, his absence does depart a little bit of a gap in our winter schedule: We aren’t dashing off to the mall to inform Santa what toys we would like and we do not spend hours writing letters to the North Pole.

However this free time has pressured us to seek out different vacation traditions and be intentional about how we spend the season.

In fact, eradicating Santa did not take away from the non secular elements of the vacation — Christmas Eve service has all the time been one among my favourite annual traditions and I like studying our Nativity storybook to the women. However this nonetheless leaves numerous time to fill within the winter months.

Here is a few of our favourite Santa-free traditions thus far:

Yearly, as an alternative of setting out cookies for Santa, we make gingerbread cookies from scratch. We all the time create a gingerbread model of our household with an lovely, edible determine to signify every particular person.

As an alternative of taking footage with Santa, now we have a vacation photograph day, the place we meet a household pal to take footage, then get lunch at our favourite diner.

As an alternative of studying “A Go to from St. Nicholas,” higher generally known as “‘Twas the Night time Earlier than Christmas,” we drink sizzling cocoa — and chocolate milk — and watch what I think about an equally timeless traditional: “The Muppet Christmas Carol.”

Slightly than making a listing of presents we would like, we choose a charity we need to give to that 12 months.

We have additionally borrowed non-Santa traditions from different nations, such because the Icelandic custom of Jolabokaflod, the place we give one another a brand new e-book on Christmas Eve and spend the night studying — or being learn to.

Presents aren’t a giant focus however they nonetheless play a job

One factor I needed to perform by making our vacation Santa-free was to not let presents be a giant focus — however my children nonetheless get loads of presents.

My husband and I attempt to persist with the fundamentals when shopping for for our youngsters: a e-book, one new outfit, and a toy — however we’re fortunate to have numerous family and friends who need to bathe our ladies with presents. We additionally need to ensure that our youngsters develop up realizing they’re lucky to obtain these items and that these presents do not present up on the home by magic.

As we open presents, my husband and I discuss who every merchandise is from and what that particular person means to us. When the women become older, I will encourage them to jot down thank-you notes to family and friends to indicate their gratitude.

With out the guise of Santa, I hope the women will develop up serious about the individuals who gave them these presents. As they open presents on Christmas, they will not take into consideration St. Nick and the North Pole — they’re going to take into consideration the family and friends round them. I feel these are those who actually matter.


Supply hyperlink