Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Explaining Santa's Gifts

We're approaching the big holiday season. Already. I'm still trying to get a nap in from last years Christmas. But, ready or not, it's coming. Are you prepared?! Your kids are older this year, and just might give you a run for your money with the Santa questions.

Every Christmas, we see parents all over trying to teach their kids the importance of giving, service and kindness. We see them doing their best to add a child in need to their Christmas list to be a good example. We bake cookies for neighbors, we drop off a turkey anonymously to a family's doorstep that we know is struggling financially.

But, when a child asks, "why doesn't Santa go to the homeless shelter?" Or, "why can't I ask for this $500 gift from Santa?" what do we say? That Santa picks and chooses which kids to visit, and that he also has a budget? Santa has RULES? Where's the fun in that?!

While there are plenty of great churchy and inspiring ways to deal with things like this where you can sit down with your children and give a lengthy and perfectly worded explanation, sometimes you need just a few words to get your point across. The best words I've ever heard someone say to their kids when these questions started popping up was,..

"Yeah, Santa brings the gifts, but Mom and Dad still have to pay for it."

I know there are many families out there who don't do the Santa thing, and that's okay. Every family is different, so if you're a family who cherishes those few years where your kids still believe in Santa and you don't want to break down saying, "Santa isn't real" when they ask the tough questions, this might be what you're looking for! These few words allow the magic of Santa to continue on while allowing some reality to the situation to be factored in. 

Children can grasp the ideas of some families having a larger budget than others. That's life, and they're typically already aware of it before anyone ever actually brings it up to them. Simply stating that Mom's and Dad's are still in charge of paying for their Christmas even when Santa and his helpers do all the work connects so many dots for them!

A family in need is still a family in need, even when Santa is involved. A $500 toy is still a $500 toy, even when Santa is involved. This answer might not be what you were looking for or work for your kids. If not, that's okay. There are plenty of other ways you can talk to your kids about these things. But for our family, it has worked great! 

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