“Seeing isn’t believing. Believing is seeing.”

Today is sunny and warm and in the high 40’s. Tomorrow will be even warmer. Where is Old Man Winter? Is he biding his time only to sneak up and wallop us as he did last winter? I will not let my guard down. Should it snow, I’ll be ready.

Santa Claus and his peculiarities were cause for so many questions. My mother, however, always had the answers. We didn’t have a fireplace so we were worried as to how Santa would get in to leave all the toys. Santa is magical my mother explained, and he always finds a way inside. How does he transport so many toys in one bag? That one is easy. His bag never empties and whatever he needs he finds inside. The size or weird shapes of the toys never matter. How do reindeer fly? That too has a touch of magic about it. Santa uses something like fairy dust and it gives the reindeer the ability to fly. I never thought to ask where the dust came from, but I’m sure my mother had an answer ready just in case I did. How does he eat all those cookies and drink all that milk? All the ups and downs and ins and outs make him hungry so he takes just a wee bite and a small sip at every stop. The reindeer hungrily eat all the carrots.

When my nephew was nine, he was wavering about Santa. Did he exist or not? He asked his mother for a favor. When he had kids of his own, would she please tell him everything he needed to know about Santa and toys and Christmas. My sister assured him she would.

I don’t remember how old I was when I figured out Santa wasn’t real. It wasn’t all that traumatic, and I didn’t blame my parents for perpetuating a myth. My two younger sisters still believed so I never let on what I knew. That would have been selfish.

One of the best parts of Christmas is always the anticipation. Even knowing the truth didn’t diminish my excitement. I still feel that way.

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15 Comments on ““Seeing isn’t believing. Believing is seeing.””

  1. rk2000 Says:

    I just herd someone say that yesterday.so cool i love this saying.

  2. olof1 Says:

    Still very windy here and it will be even more so during the night and tomorrow, still not as bad as they first thought. Now they are warning about flooding instead, some cities by the coast are already having problems and many inland will have too due to heavy raining. No risk here though, we have no bigger river or lake close enough to flood this neighborhood.

    Santa or Julemanden (the Yule man) as they call him in Denmark comes in to homes through their windows so there’s no need to have a chimney there and here in Sweden Jultomten (the Yule gnome) comes to visit in our homes on christmas eve. I think he does that in Norway (Julenissen, can’t translate nissen though 🙂 ) and some parts of Finland (joulupukki (except in those parts where they speak Swedish, there he’s called julgubben which is something like the Yule old man 🙂 ) , have no idea what that would be in English 🙂 ) too.

    I was so relieved when I found out he isn’t real, he scared the sh.. out of me as he seems to do with most Swedish kids 🙂

    Since a lot of people tends to give the Yule gnome a schnaps when leaving he can be a bit too jolly at the end of the day so now many let his wife, the gnome mother, give the presents instead. She seems to be much better in saying no to any kind of alcohol 🙂 and kids tend to love her since she’s an old time (sober) jolly granny 🙂

    Have a great day!
    Christer.

    • katry Says:

      Christer,
      We still have a too warm a winter. Usually by this time I’m in a winter coat and wearing mittens. Texas got weather like yours and so many places there flooded.

      The window is so much easier than a chimney. Our Santa also comes on Christmas Eve when we are all fast asleep but getting to sleep is the hardest of all on that night.

      Santa never scared me though he does scare some kids because of his beard. He doesn’t do anything scary. If you’re bad, he leaves coal in your stocking.

      I think Schnapps is a great idea-better than milk and cookies.

      Enjoy your evening!

  3. Bob Says:

    Anticipation, sounds like a ketchup commercial. 🙂

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=uoLoyg3JKRQ

    The Santa thing was popularized by that poem, the Coca Cola artist and Macy’s. A myth that has turned totally commercial. Now parents are putting an elf on the shelf. Sort of a CIA spy for Santa designed to encourage good behavior from their kids. My parents told me that Santa knows magically if you’ve been naughty or nice. The elf is just another thing to sell to the parents.

    Obviously, the kids figure out where the toys come from and move on hopefully without emotional damage. 🙂

    • katry Says:

      Bob,
      Santa was around long before the poem, but it was the poem which gave him us the Santa who looks like the one we have today. Coca Cola also gave us a Santa based on the description in Nast’s poem. Montgomery Ward gave us Rudolph as a Christmas sales promotion.

      I read Washington Irving’s Sketch Book where he writes about Old Christmas and we share some of the customs he writes about, many coming from the Dutch.

      My niece’s three year old jumps out of bed every day to find his elf on the shelf. The elf does watch so Santa doesn’t have to any more.

      Finding out about Santa was no big thing, and I don’t know anyone for whom it was.

    • katry Says:

      minicapt,
      Science muddies the legend just a bit. I guess we’ll have to rely on my mother’s answer that it was magic.

  4. Richard Says:

    Gettin’ greyish now as the sun exits the scene like a drop leaves the faucet … warmer tomorrow, and I too ask ‘Wo ist Winter?’ Not here yet, dat’s f’ true.

    I can’t remember ever being all that concerned about the peculiarities of the Gentleman in Red … we had more questions about Mardi Gras than Christmas. No fireplace in any of our homes – no need. Never got cold enough in New Orleans for one. Any of the ‘toney’ homes on The Avenue that had chimneys were possessed of them either as an architectural flourish or a touch o’ the old pretentiousness that came sneakin’ in thru the front door. I suspect the latter more than the former.

    I’m pretty sure we all had the ‘Santa’ thing pegged when we were around seven or eight years old – maybe a bit sooner, but I don’t remember. That, however, didn’t keep any of us from telling our children about ‘him.’ It’s the old ‘behavioral control’ thing at work again …

    Anticipation is still the best part of Christmas, even tho’ I now recognize it for the driver of the Engine of Commerce that it has become. Societies need Engines.

    • katry Says:

      Richard,
      The nights do get that winter feeling when down in the 30’s, but the day temperature jumps right back up to the 40’s. Winter is gone again.

      No Mardi Gras for us so Santa Claus was the mystery man. The poor Easter Bunny was a poor second or third fiddle to good old Santa. I don’t remember having any questions about the rabbit.

      We were eight or nine when we found out about Santa’s true identity, but knowing didn’t spoil Christmas.

      I love all of Christmas: the lights, the trees, the wonderful smell of pine and of sugar cookies baking in the oven, finding just the right gift and I love the carols.

  5. Birgit Says:

    When I’m lucky Saint Nicholas comes tomorrow morning and puts some candy, fruit or nuts in my shoes by the door but only when I behaved well. His companion Ruprecht beats the naughty children or puts coal or stones in their shoes. We sang our first Christmas concert today so I hope that’s good enough for Saint Nicholas to give me a treat.

    • katry Says:

      Birgit,
      I’m sure Saint Nicholas will be quite generous and will leave you a wonderful treat.

      I’d be really good if there was the possibility of a beating if I were bad.

  6. Caryn Says:

    Hi Kat,
    A friend of mine always told her kids that Santa was the spirit of Christmas and didn’t need any particular way to get into the house. Christmas spirit was just there. She also told them that the day they said there was no Santa was the day that there would be no presents any more. Her kids are in their 30’s and 40’s and haven’t said that yet. In her family, Santa only gave each kid a few small presents. Everything else was clearly labeled “from Mom and Dad”.

    In my family, Santa Claus came through the china closet in the dining room. It was next to the chimney which connected to the oil burner so he couldn’t come in that way. Christmas Eve day, we’d help our mother empty the china closet so Santa wouldn’t break anything. Since most of it was going on the dinner table for Christmas day, it was an excellent way to get it all out to be cleaned. No flies on my mom. 🙂 That practice stopped as soon as the youngest one figured out the Santa mystery.

    It’s sunny and warm here. I’m still wearing flip-flops outside. This is unnatural and I fear we will pay dearly for it. I have my snow plow guy all lined up.

    Enjoy the day.

    • katry Says:

      Hi Caryn,
      Every Christmas no matter how old I was my mother signed the cards on the present From: Santa. I did the same for her and my father’s presents. It was just keeping a bit of the magic alive.

      I love your mother. That was so smart. I’d have figured out how to keep the tradition going in some way.

      I also have my snow plow guy all lined up even for when I’m gone. The thought just popped into my head I should put a shovel in my trunk as I’m leaving my car at the bus parking.

      Great day here too!

      Enjoy the warmth before winter decided to return.


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