Sunday, December 2, 2007

Spirit of the Season

Well, now that we're into December it's all Santa, all the time in our home. There are Santa pictures on the walls, Santa music emenating from the speakers, and plentiful piles of Santa books. We especially love How Santa Got His Job by Stephen Krensky and Where's Prancer by Syd Hof.

The fact that we don't do a "better be good or Santa won't come" schtick--or anything too literal at all--allows us a great deal of freedom in our relationship with the big guy. Charlie loves to put on the red hat and pretend to be Santa, just as he loves to pretend to be Curious George or Speedy Gonzales. He gets quite irritated with me for being so inflexible about a visit to the roof to check on the reindeer. "But they're my reindeer," he remonstrates.

When he is older we'll talk about the mythological tradition of Santa, stretching all the way back to the pre-Christian, reindeer-lovin' Icelandic shamen who wore red cloaks and crawled down smokeholes into doorless huts to go on vision quests. But for now we're having plenty of fun with his modern incarnations. "Ho ho ho," Charlie solemnly chants, as he hands me a rock wrapped in a well-used scrap of snowman paper. "I bring da presents!"

And I agree. For it's true, the very best gifts come from his presence.