I loved Santa Claus as a child. Loved. In fact, I made sure to stick little gifts in my mom’s stocking to make sure that she still believed in Santa (just in case she was really he, I didn’t want her to find out.)
I want my kids to love him every bit as much. But each year, I kinda forget how we did it the previous year. My husband and I invariably have a conversation like this on Christmas Eve:
Me: Was it one big gift from Santa and the rest of the presents from Mommy and Daddy? Ooh, but what about the wrapping paper? Does Santa always use the same wrapping paper? Wait a second, I know, we used plain brown paper from Santa!
Him: That all sounds fine. As long as you remember that Santa always brings Matchbox Cars!
Me: What are you talking about?!
Him: And the kids have to do “the pose” like me and my sister did.
Me: Well, all I really care about is matching Christmas jammies. Were we supposed to put out cookies? Oh crap.
And don’t bother to ask my BFF Whitney what normal looks like, the only opinion she offered is: it is bullshit to wrap stocking gifts. Well, ok then.
Another friend told me that Santa Claus brings the most commercial obnoxious gift that Mommy and Daddy would never purchase. That way, you can continue espousing the importance of independently crafted wooden toys and your daughter can still have her Barbie glam-o-rama beach house. I love that one.
So, friends, how do you do it? What are your Santa Claus traditions? Did you learn them in childhood or make them up as you go? And how the heck do you remember them each year?