I am Santa.

Alright, who’s coming over to clean this mess up?

DSC01769

I blame these heathens.

On December 24th my house was Priest-clean (what’s that? Oh, click here.), but by 7am on December 25th it turns into a dump and I’m waiting for the Junk Lady from The Labyrinth to pop out all, what’s the matter, don’t you like all your new toys? What about these Skylanders? Well look here, it’s the creepy talking Doc McStuffins doll, that’s what you were looking for, wasn’t it, my dear?

Each year, as playing Santa gets more and more like how I envisioned it as we blissfully stared over the crib at our darling first born, the more I grow to resent the whole thing.

I stay up until 2am, wrapping gifts, stuffing stockings, assembling crap, half eating cookies, all so I can wake up four hours later and watch my children squeal with delight about how amazing Santa is, and I’m like, really? He’s the awesome one? Did Santa cover rush shipping to get your American Girl Doll here in time? Did Santa cough up $90 for a box of Legos that he won’t be stuck assembling for 80 hours?

Am I selfish, totally. Is it better to give than receive, sure. Do their smiles make it all worth it, whatever. I’m working with a super small window of time that my kids think I’m awesome, and maybe I’m a touch jealous of this mythical guy who gets all the credit.

Except for not having 9 AAA batteries on hand. That I get credit for.

How do you Santa?

 

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  1. LouisianaMeredith says

    I felt your pain and resentment once upon a time. Then, they grow up and all they want is concert tickets (I rock! Won that round big time) and money….where’s the excitement in that? Push the frustration aside because you’ll be in my shoes waaaay sooner than you can imagine. :(

    On an up couple of notes, my 23 year old did tell me that, over the years, I was an awesome…and I quote here–squee!–”magical” Santa. Also, the 52 year old significant other, his 17 year old who couldn’t be more mine that’s how much I love him AND my 23 year old actually still get sorta giddy with the stocking stuffers I bust ass to make cool, unique and fun!

  2. Melissa says

    My mom said that all of the thankless Santa years were totally worth it when one day when I was 13, it suddenly dawned on me that my parents had done all of the Santa stuff when I was younger. I knew there wasn’t a Santa, but I hadn’t put together that meant that all the years I had believed, it had been them. Made it really easy for my mom to use that against me when I was acting like the typical sullen teenager… “Young lady, I did not spend hours at night assembling Barbie’s dream house so that I could be talked to in that tone of voice!”

    • says

      This totally cracked me up. Melissa, you are so right. I have to say that even as a 43 year old woman, I so miss my mom filling the stockings. She kept it up even when I was in college. Since it’s only my husband and I, it doesn’t get done. He just doesn’t seem to appreciate it and that whole “young lady” speech doesn’t really work on him.

  3. Carrie says

    I so get this. And now I have a new found respect for my parents who worked so hard to give us a great christmas each year. We do a one big gift from santa, the rest from us ratio. We like it!

    • Brittany says

      Yes, as it stands right now, ALL gifts come from Santa. I used to only do one or two, but then Andy told me that, no, ALL gifts had to come from him. So like, when I am explaining a toy or talking about it, I feel like I keep getting caught in a lie because HOW WOULD I KNOW ABOUT THIS THE ELVES MADE IT DUH.

      • AJ Owings says

        Nope Santa just brings one gift for each kiddo, the rest are from Mom and Dad. And Santa’s gifts are never wrapped and are preassembled if needed.

      • DeltaJuliet says

        What the hell. I lost this argument with my husband too and now all gifts come from Santa except for CLOTHES and the things no one wants anyway. Man, it’s a bummer.

  4. Rae Ann says

    One day, when these kids mature and figure out the whole thing, they will surely look back and KNOW that you did it all and worked hard to make them happy with the “Santa List” outcome. Its a little lke profit sharing: you invest the work and the bennies eventually come.

  5. Amber says

    I let my kids ask Santa for 2 things and the rest come from me. I’d like to say its because the simplicity of only having to stuff stockings and wrapping their 2 items on Christmas Eve night. In all honesty I feel like why should Santa get all the glory?! I busted my ass and spent my money on all.those.toys!! and I want some appreciation damnit!!!

  6. says

    I felt the same way when our girls were kids – we didn’t have a lot of money most of the time, so it would have hurt to give Santa the credit. So, as my own parents did, the stockings were from Santa, everything else was from us. Works that way with the grands too.

    We do still have to eat half of all the cookies though. I always try to make sure that at least some of them go well with red wine :)

  7. Dawn says

    I agree with most of these comments. Enjoy the “magic” while it lasts. They will soon be teens! Once the Santa fantasy is over, it takes some of the fun out of Christmas. I actually get a little break b/c we travel to TX every other year. The travel years are deemed “Christmas Light” and they don’t expect super expensive gifts. Instead, we all pick something really cool to do as a family on the drive home from TX! One year we hiked Mammouth Cave in KY, one year we did a LA Swamp tour. We always have fun! Not your traditional holiday!

  8. Jess P says

    My mom would always give us 2 -3 presents from Mom and Dad because apparently my sister and I were like “Presents from Santa!! Wait why did you guys buy us anything? You buy for your hair dresser and the dog groomer but not us?”

    “Santa” also wrapped all my presents in 1 paper and all my sisters in another. We could tell who’s paper was who’s by what our stockings had in them. Saves a bunch of tags.

  9. says

    27 hours of work to get it all ready, 7 minutes for it to all be over. Basically, Christmas morning is like the first time I had sex.

    I’m not a fan of Christmas. It’s stupid. And Santa is an asshole who has a REASON to be fat. What the hell is that about?

  10. says

    Santa gives 1 gift plus the stockings. We do the rest. I just don’t think this strange man, who my children won’t even go see, gets all the credit. My children have not suffered because of this in the least.

  11. Kira says

    I started out letting Santa take credit for the super cool gifts when my son was little. I decided that Christmas age 5 was when mom was taking over getting the super cool gifts. I take second place to no Holiday spirit. Santa gets to give calenders and head phones and small things like that. Mom gets the ipods and game systems and the hard to get hoodies! Works well for us and i like it this way :)

  12. Anna says

    I don’t have kids, so I don’t Santa yet, but it’s always so odd to me that parents wrap their Santa presents. “Santa” never wrapped our gifts. My brother and I woke up on Christmas morning to a beautifully stacked pile of whatever crap we had begged for that year. The only “wrapping” Santa actually used was our stockings.

    Until recently I didn’t even know it was common practice to do things like buy different wrapping paper to hide and fool the kids with.

    Oh, Santa.

  13. Spring says

    All toys, stocking stuffers, and generally fun stuff are from Santa. Momma & Daddy buy clothes, shoes and jackets…granted, those things are awesome to my 5 year old fashion crazy girl. Santa leaves 1 present at the grandparents (which they buy) and a stocking. I do the magic, I do the insane…and nothing is wrapped, all toys are assembled and ready to be played with. Partially because we have exactly 2 hours to see Santa gifts, unwrap gifts, load car, hit the road and also because it’s what my folks did. It makes me appreciate my parents more and also allowed my dad to tell me every year (until he passed away) about spending 5 hours with 2 of my uncles trying to put together Barbie’s Dreamhouse.
    I know when she gets older she’ll appreciate it, and even if she doesn’t, I love, love, LOVE the magic on her face.

  14. Mary says

    Santa gives ONE gift per kid in our house. It’s usually pretty big – this year it was Beats, American Girl doll, and Legos, but NOT the biggest. A few years back we got sick and tired of Santa getting all the glory.

    I do think that when your kids figure out who Santa is, they put it all together and realize that you are the one who has done all the hard work all the years past.

  15. Lisa says

    What I do is order everything online, have it shipped to my job and wrap everything at work during my luch breaks. This way come Christmas Eve, everything is wrapped and in a large box that I bring home from work and leave in the garage until my kids are asleep. No more staying up until 3-4 am, and then being woken up a few hours later by my kids to undo all my hard work. We do the one from us, one from Santa thing too so that way we do get credit for some of the gifts. The big stuff (ipods, wiis, and other large $$ items) come from mom and dad. I want the credit on those!!! Tell Andy if all gifts come from Santa, then have him shop and wrap them!!! You get your credit Mama!!!!

  16. Sherry says

    Santa has always filled the stockings. The wrapped gifts are from Mommy and Daddy. And now that the kids are grown up and out of the house (but not yet married with kids), we still all play the make-believe “Oh look, what did Santa put in your stocking?” game and get a kick out of it.

  17. Denia says

    Santa brings one “must” have gift, a nutcracker and my sons favorite candy. He fills the stocking with stuff we buy, my son knows this. Santa is then rewarded with wine, sometimes whiskey and fresh baked cookies. Santa is happy with the rewards and my son thinks that mom and dad are just as awesome as Santa.

  18. Jessica says

    Our Santa gives one big gift, NOT wrapped, and does the stockings. My girls are 7 and 5 and it has worked great. They love going to see Santa and asking for their one gift. He always asks what else they want and they tell him that he only needs to bring one gift b/c he has so many others to buy for. Mom and Dad get all the credit for everything else. It’s awesome. I love our arrangement and I’ll be very sad when they stop believing.

  19. Laurie says

    I had that exact conversation with my husband 2 nights ago! I was all like, why does Santa get all the credit when I busted my butt for the last few weeks? But in the end it is all about the little ones and making the magic happen for them. I know that all too soon my son won’t believe any more and I’ll be sad. But stil… I feel your pain!

  20. Christina S says

    When I was a single mom, the majority of the gifts were from Santa…but I got cool gifts form Santa too! It was fun to shop for myself.

    When I broke the news to my son that Santa doesn’t exist…his reaction was anger and disbelief that mom lied to him! My reaction to that…I played Santa as a single mom for 7 f’ing years…where’s the gratitude and appreciation?!

    I still haven’t gotten the credit I feel I deserve for all those years but now it’s nice to get the credit. We still make some gifts from Santa just because it’s fun. Now I’m re-married and I don’t have to do my own shopping…sometimes I miss doing my own shopping.

    I think it will be worth it when you visit your kids after they have kids of their own on Christmas morning, your kids are exhausted and your grandkids think you and Santa rock!

  21. says

    With two young girls, we try to divide what Santa brings and what we bring. Stockings are currently from Santa, and they also get a gift each from Santa (and FL Santa aka grandma) under the tree. Anything else under our tree is from from mom & dad, and I have no clue what we do under my in-law’s tree. It’s pre-assembled piles with our name on it after brunch.

    The girls are already forming the idea that Santa brings ONE gift (because that’s what Santa’s video shows from PNP – ONE GIFT), and they still get some cool presents from family too.

    So – go get some credit girl!

  22. Carrie F says

    I don’t do Santa thanks to a traumatizing event in school where the teacher asked how we found out Santa wasn’t real and I still believed. The other kids were brutal. This was in 5th grade.
    It’s not easy to pull off since Santa is shoved down everyone’s throat. We don’t leave out cookies or tell the kids that Santa is bringing them stuff. When they ask who got them they gift they’re opening we say we did. They usually get so caught up in the excitement that they stop asking. I still bring out all of the wrapped presents Christmas Eve because it’s fun and exciting.
    Although after reading some of these responses, the one gift from Santa and the rest from us thing sounds like a reasonable compromise. At our house growing up all presents were from Santa so I never thought of doing it any other way.

    • Lisa says

      I feel your pain Carrie! Only I was 6! It was terrible. We focus on the religious aspects of the season. Open the gifts that are clearly from mom and dad on Christmas eve. And my parents overwhelm the kids with presents Christmas day. We tell the kids they don’t need the nice story about Santa because Grandma and Grandpa give them more than any Santa could afford. Yes, my friends think I am screwball – but I think they are screwball too. ;)

  23. Jen says

    I never understood Santa getting all the credit! He likes to get a few things on the list for each child to keep the magic alive, but when it comes to the big things, my husband and I take all the credit! Our kids learn that they can’t ask for the moon from Santa and when we do splurge, they know it was a great gift from a mom and dad who love them!

  24. says

    Santa brings one gift per child at our house, the rest come from Mom and Dad. :) We have a formula for Santa letters: Say something nice to Santa and something nice about your year, ask for one thing for yourself and one thing for someone else (it can be general, like hoping all children have a good Christmas or something like that). Santa leaves his gifts in front of each child’s pile beneath the tree, and they are always wrapped in special Santa paper, and he makes fancy tags for them.

  25. Heather says

    My kids found out early Santa wasn’t real. Call us Scrooges, but well, it seems weird to lie to them about the existence of a person they will one day found out isn’t real and then why wouldn’t they be like, hey, Mom was lying about Santa being real, she’s probably lying that sex and alcohol are no fun until you’re a grown up? For instance…. So bah humbug, my eight year old helped me stuff his sisters stocking and nobody is super scarred.
    For a good while we gave pretty handsome tooth fairy presents, and I do recall the wide-eyed look of my son when he realized and asked, “So YOU gave me X?” “Yes.” “AND you gave me Y?” “Yes.” It was a pretty cool feeling that he figured it out and appreciated it, so yeah, I do get it. A little anyway…

  26. says

    When my brother learned the secret of Santa he started crying about how it is really unfair and expensive that my parents had to shell out all the swag! The babie will understand and be grateful in the right moment. :). At least that’s what I tell myself when I’m buying a third round of Santa gifts coz the lil varmints keep finding the original gifts!

  27. Jodi says

    After lots of recon for my two kids “christmas dream list” and ruling out the obvious castles in the sky, ponies and real live tigers, I would take the thing they wanted most and steal that privledge from santa by making it a from mommy gift. And convexly the crazy stuff i either couldn’t afford or find well…santa ran out…now go try on these nice warm socks (o; p.s. my kids are 17 and 16 and they loved their santa christmases, but appreciate their mommy ones more.

  28. Heather says

    I SO miss when my kids believed. It does take a little of the fun out of Christmas morning when they’re not excited about Santa anymore!

    But, when they believed, Santa always brought ONE gift, plus stockings, just like a few others have mentioned. Santa’s gifts were always wrapped in special paper that did not match any other paper under the tree (that’s how I figured out there was no Santa – thanks MOM!). I never waited to wrap anything until Christmas eve. Everything is wrapped and labeled and stored on a high shelf in the closet, waiting to be whisked out to the tree after they were asleep. :-)

  29. Amanda says

    Apparently, when I was about 3 or 4, some kid at preschool told us all that there was no Santa, so I came home and grilled my (totally unprepared for this conversation in the middle of bath time) mom, who provided an answer to the “is he real” question, but caved when I started in on the whys, like why the dogs didn’t bark at him. So I don’t remember ever believing in Santa. For some reason, we still did eggnog and cookies – because my dad loves eggnog – but all of my presents were always from people I knew. I’ve never felt particularly scarred by this, and I was unprepared for my husband’s insistence that boyo should believe in Santa. But that’s fine – presents on Christmas Eve were from mom & dad, presents at Bubbie and Grandpa’s house are from them, and everything that appeared wrapped and under the tree on Christmas morning was from Santa. He was mainly thrilled to get an orange in his stocking, since the main character in his favorite Christmas book got an orange in his stocking.

    BTW, what was up with that Barbie Dream House? My parents also have horrid memories of trying to get that thing put together! Also, there was an incident involving the Thundercats’ lair, which was set up, batteries and all, and then went off, unprovoked and loudly, at about 3 am. on Christmas morning.

  30. says

    My incredible parents gave us cool, fun gifts, plus books and clothes (practical) for Christmas. Then Santa in all his amazing glory gave us the FUCKING AWESOME gifts: the Barbie Dream House, the Nintendo and games, the stick hockey, mountain bikes, the Nintendo 64 with Mario64 and Goldeneye, the kayak, etc.. And Santa never ever wrapped gifts, but he and his elves did assemble absolutely everything; with the exception of the stick hockey table which got almost assembled before dear old St. Nick left us a note (with green & red ink on festive stationary no less!) apologizing for leaving it incomplete because he still had too many houses to visit, but he left tools and instructions for our parents to finish up. Plus stockings full of candy and knick-knacks and one piece of jewelry for me and my sister.
    How my poor parents did all that PLUS all the wrapping of family gifts and hosting Christmas Eve dinner AND Christmas morning breakfast for the entire family, I will never figure out.

  31. Sarah says

    We don’t do Santa at our house. We’re more focused on the religious aspect of the season. Plus, and here’s my selfish part, we were poor for so long that there was no way some fat guy in a red suit was getting the credit for the scrimping and saving I had to do to provide any sort of Christmas at all.

  32. Jen says

    At our house Santa leaves one gift, wrapped in special Santa paper right in front of their stockings (really more like personalized fabric buckets). That is the gift that they have “asked for” whether it be in letter form or talking to the big guy. This year we emailed Santa! Under the tree the kids get 3 presents from mom and dad, something to wear, something to play with and something to read. Three presents just like baby Jesus got from the wise men when he was born. Ties it all back into the reason we celebrate Christmas.

  33. Jill says

    I am with you 100% one year of bust my ass and Santa changed. Now we split the cool gifts it’s only fair right Mr. Claus and he does not wrap no way could he wrap his gifts and they not get ripped in the sleigh and thanks to the creepy elf that lives in our house if a gift sounds really cool sometimes the elf will just tell mom instead of santa since mom is really cool.

  34. Melitta says

    When I was little we had three “Santas” Mom, dad, and the grandparents. Mom’s tended to be the “must have” item we told Santa about, either by letter, or when we got to talk to him in person at the mall. Dad’s was stockings full of candy. And the grandparents helped mom or got something “little” compared to Mom’s. I remember one year though, my mom and my grandma told me that Santa recruited grandpa to help make my gift, it was a three piece wardrobe, complete with full length mirror, mirror and desk, and a “hope chest” full of new dress up clothes and fake make up. My Grandpa had made it and painted it and the “elves” helped fill it. Thinking about it now makes me almost cry with how much effort and hard work he put into it.
    And of course being the oldest of three, made it awkward but interesting when the truth came out. I played along for my sibling’s dreams, and came to love their reactions, and realized that grandma making us eat breakfast before we could go near the tree to see what santa brought, was just a cruel way to for the three of them to watch us squirm.
    Of course I felt bad that I couldn’t tell “santa” directly thank you, with out ruining it. And that my little brother found out earlier than I did that santa wasn’t real (though he played like he did for as long as he could because “believing in santa means more presents” ;)

  35. Jana Frerichs says

    Girl, you are singing my song. I HATED the whole Santa thing. My child is 15 so I don’t even do anything Santa anymore. He gets a stocking full of stuff, but all the presents are from me. And when he was little I hated that Santa got all the credit, so the presents he really wanted came from me and the other stuff was from Santa. Probaly not very cool, but dammit, I wanted the credit!

  36. Friday Ebersohl says

    We tell our daughter that Santa brought one gift (the one thats not wrapped but just has a bow) and momma and daddy get the rest. That way I’m at least getting some of the credit and the hugs and kisses :).

  37. Desera says

    Did anyone else notice how tall GiGi is???? She is such a little lady now! They are all precious and beautiful kids! Love the photo!

  38. Mel says

    When my kids were smaller we did three from Santa (generally whatever they had asked him for) the rest were from us and I totally understand I resented the fact that the things the kids really loved, the things I had to go in search of and stand in line forever for weren’t from me in their eyes. That is until the first Christmas that both of them knew the truth, in all honesty my heart was broken. My kids still loved all the presents they got and were so excited to unwrap and see what they got. But the magic was gone, no more “I can’t believe santa got me what I asked for” no more ” he ate all the cookies and drank all the coke” and no more “the reindeer ate all their snacks too!” This Christmas we actually had to wake them up and before we did I laid in my bed and cried because I didn’t have two little people jumping on my bed screaming and excited because santa came.

  39. says

    We could never do Santa because Giggles was terrified of him. She questioned one of his helpers at the mall once when she was three, she had issues with a fat, old, white guy watching her and being able to break into our house at any time to give her gifts or lumps of coal. The helper was perplexed but assured her that no matter what Santa is always watching and he will find a way to get into your house. (I know, I know I should have gotten her name and number so she could pay for the therapy that Giggles will probably need later in life because of it) So while he never got the credit, it made it harder to explain why sometimes their gifts weren’t as awesome as some of their friends’ gifts were and well…..I can’t remember where I was going with this. Like at all.

  40. kayk says

    With 5 kiddos the Christmas magic just overflows at our house. The adults (parents,grandparents, aunts etc..) enjoy making the magic happen for them. Most things require effort yes, but not alot of $$. We enjoy making wonderful memories for the kiddos instead of the highlights of expensive gifts from Santa.

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