Every Christmas is similar in our house. I do the Christmas shopping, I wrap it all and put it under the tree. However, as I am the non earner in the household I wouldn’t be able to do any of that without Hubby. Both of us grew up with the notion of Santa and other than a few different details about how the Big Man delivered all the presents our Christmases had been much the same on that front; Santa bought all the presents. So when we had kids it wasn’t even a discussion that we would pass on the Christmas magic. However, I now feel like we haven’t thought this through enough. So here is my question; Santa: Yay or Nay?
Of course I may rememeber what I want to remember and there may well have been gift from my parents but I don’t rememeber that being the case. Nor do I remember being disappointed that one of my friends got more presents from Santa than I did. So it seemed to be no issue that Santa simply bought all of the Christmas presents. As Ellie is getting older I am starting to see an issue with that. She is not a spoilt child but once she thinks the acquisition of a new toy is fundamentally in the hands of some magical being and not a direct result of her Daddy having to work her attitude changes. She wants the toys in the adverts and she can’t understand why she wouldn’t get them all. It is magic after all and she is wishing very hard!
Making A Change
Every Christmas Hubby and I have the same conversation: He wants some of the credit for the presents. Initially I over came this by doing a Christmas Eve box from us to the girls. I understand this is a bit of a fashion at the moment but it served it’s purpose and Ellie has enjoyed getting gifts from her Mummy and Daddy. This year I feel like a change needs to be made. I am happy to continue with the Christmas Eve box, I enjoy putting it together. But this year Ellie is very receptive to what is going on at Christmas and now Trixie is nearly three she is too. Whilst Ellie remembers Santa brings the presents I know she would still buy into the fact that he doesn’t bring all of them which would be different from all the years gone by. Perhaps this year he can bring a few gifts to each of the girls.
What Others Do
To ease some of my worries and to get the perspective of others I asked some fellow parents and bloggers how they incorporate Santa or if they don’t include him at Christmas at all.
Lylia Rose – We have Santa in our home. My kids are only 5 and 2 so I think it’s fun to do all the Santa stuff. I remember finding it magical as a child so want them to as well.
Better Together Home – We have Santa however we say that he brings just one gift and that the rest are from mummy And daddy and family. We live in quite a deprived inner city area where many children get little for Christmas- we felt it would ruin the magic for other kids if our daughter got quite a few presents from Santa and they didn’t. Lily told the kids at school and now they all believe it too, have even been thanked by a couple of mums. With regards to beliefs we teach her that everyone has different beliefs and ideas and that if we don’t agree it doesn’t matter we have to be respectful. That applies across the board including different beliefs about Christmas.
Household Money Saving – We have Santa. However, all the presents come from us, he just delivers them. The gifts in the stockings come from him.
Pink Pear Bear – I grew up with no Santa as my parents didn’t want to build my childhood on lies! But my granny did and so she would keep it going and they would tell me the truth after, highly confusing! With my kids, we go for it and we do Santa in a big way but he only fills stocking so they know to thank the people that gave them gifts. Can’t have an imaginary man taking all the credit for my hard work!
Mayflower Blogs – Santa brings the kids their main presents and stocking presents and we do the rest from us-the children are 4 and 7 and still very much believe. Now my son is in year 3 we’ve obviously had other children suggest magic and Santa aren’t real, but I dismiss it and tell him I still believe at 31 and that his whole family do, and to ignore the children who say these things as they’ll be the ones that miss out on the magic at Christmas.
Oreos and Gin – We have Santa – not by choice though. I have told our older son about St. Nicholas who lived in the 12th century and how we carry the spirit of Christmas. However when he was almost 4 he told me he wanted to believe so we agreed and now Santa brings his everyone’s Stocking presents. I think that’s a good enough compromise that lets them have the magic of Christmas whilst letting them feel appreciation for the other gifts they receive from friends & family.
Family Travel with Ellie – We have Santa – we just love Christmas and the magic of Santa and his elves is a huge part of it whilst the children are small. I see it as harmless magic that children embrace. In our house Santa brings a stocking and a couple of small gifts for each child, the rest of the gifts are from us. The children believe that we are in partnership with Santa through the year, so he’s not a random stranger entering the property, as let’s face it, that’s odd. So we help him wrap his gifts when he’s busy etc. My son is 11 and this is his first year of not believing – but he loves keeping the magic alive for his little sister.
Autism Kids on Tour – The big presents all come from me. Santa brings a stocking with pyjamas, slippers, socks, a small present and a satsuma every year! My kids are 13 and 11 but we have been to Lapland the last couple of years and met the real Santa! Now we all believe!
Our Fairytale Adventure – We do have Father Christmas in this house, but he is the delivery man and doesn’t actually gift the presents. All presents are from Mummy/ Daddy/ Grandparents/ Aunts / Uncles etc. We tell the children that we have to give Father Christmas the money for the presents. We still leave milk, cookies and a carrot. We still do Father Christmas’s grotto and we still make it really magical. If they ever ask why Father Christmas actually buys some children presents we will just tell them that everyone has a different arrangement with Father Christmas depending on each situation.
Pondering Parenthood – Little M is only one but we will be talking about Santa – I want her to understand that people have bought her gifts and she needs to thank them, though, so Santa will be bringing the stockings rather than all of the presents!
The SML Diet Blog – We do santa, the elves, the reindeer everything. We even spend Christmas Eve tracking him. Unfortunately I found out at a young age that santa didn’t exist and from the age of about 11 we stopped with presents altogether so I’m keen to have some magic for my children.
Devon Mama – We have Father Christmas. He provides the gifts in the stockings, anything under the tree comes from us or other friends and family. On Christmas Eve we bring them all down and put them under the tree together so they don’t just appear. It’s exactly how we were both raised and helped us appreciate that a lot of effort and money had gone into getting those Christmas gifts!
Twinderelmo – We full on are Santa here. My almost 9 year old still believes and he still talks about him with such excitement.
Mummy Cat Notes – Santa just isn’t a thing in my house and hasn’t been a thing since my nan, she was scared of him and if you think about it, a stranger coming into your house at night is pretty scary so I can understand, the kids don’t seem that bothered by it and haven’t really asked if he’s real or not.
Ready Freddie Go – We are a Santa household and will be for as long as possible..I remember the day I learned Santa wasn’t real and Christmas has never been the same for me and so I want to keep the magic for the kids for as long as they believe.
Dad Geek – We talk about Santa as if he’s kind of a magical delivery service. That way we keep the magic of Santa but the kids understand that the presents are provided mostly by us. I think Santa is an important part of keeping mystery and wonder alive for young children.
Soph Obsessed – We have Santa in our house and he delivers all the presents! He won’t just bring you anything though as he doesn’t like spoilt children! The magic I’ve seen in my son’s eyes from believing makes Christmas so special for me! Long live the magic!
I Am River – We have Santa but he only brings a stocking. I love the magic of Xmas, but we live in Tanzania now and a lot of children here obviously won’t get anything at all. So in our home Santa brings a stocking and then other gifts are from family.
Mum’s The Nerd – We do the whole shebang, Santa, Elves, Reindeer and a whole load of Christmas magic. Santa only brings one gift that Little Legs has asked for though. I’d like for her to believe in the magic of Christmas for as long as possible.
Sinead Latham – Santa only brings stockings in our house. Why should the guy take all the credit for our hard earned money. Plus, when the magic is broken I think it won’t be such a surprise.
Mommy and Rory – Rory is still a little young to understand but we will definitely do Santa when he’s a little older. Growing up my mum always used to give us one gift which was left by Santa. Should would say he had so many toys to give to all the other children around the world that mummies and daddies had to give him a helping hand. It means the big guy doesn’t get all the credit and your children still get the magic of Christmas.
Ankle Biters Adventures – Love Santa and I think it’s such a magical experience for them my two love seeing him.
The Growing Mum – I didn’t have Santa when growing up and my other half is not organised enough to keep up the magic so we don’t bother.
They Grow So Quick – We have Father Christmas and brings the stocking and presents under the tree. It’s how we did it growing up and I am carrying it on because I loved it as a child. My children know that all families are different and some don’t celebrate Christmas at all so that Father Christmas might not visit everyone.
Coffee, Cake, Kids – We do Santa, big time – but he is only the courier! Kids know that we buy the presents, so they appreciate them and they know there’s no endless pot of money, and if something sells out or we can’t get it, they understand. However, shortly before Xmas, one of the elves comes to our house for a last minute meeting when they’re in bed, and he/she takes the presents back to Santa to be wrapped and delivered on Xmas eve! We don’t do stockings at all.
Neon Rainbow – We believe! Santa brings the stockings which are off him and the rest are off us and family he just delivers them for us.
Welsh Mum – I always thought it was a bit silly before I had my son, but now I do see the magic. I’m going to try and keep up the idea that Santa helps mummy and daddy by delivering the gifts, but not go full-on. There’s only a short period of your life you can really believe in magic like that so I don’t mind keeping it up until he realises!
The Sleep Thiefs Mummy – Santa sends all the gifts – all of them from us and the family but gifts from friends are from them.
Tippy Tupps – Santa is definitely here and provides the Christmas stocking. That way they know the big gifts under the tree are from family and friends and can be thanked etc, but the stocking is something extra special direct from the north pole!
Becster – Santa exists in our house and he gives the girls presents. I can see the magic when their eyes light up on Christmas morning. I want to keep this magic alive for as long as possible. Yeah ok, I’m lying to my kids but there are much much worse things in this world. The world is full of nasty stuff and the very least I can do is give them a magical time before they realise it.
A Journey to a Lifetime – Santa does exist in our house he brings one present (never the big present ) fills their stockings. The rest are from us and family.
Lojo Vs the World – Cece is only 18 months old so doesn’t completely understand yet but we do have Santa in our house. She went to see him last year and we’re going again this year. I love it, it’s magical. I’ve been thinking about it and I’ll be telling her that her just brings one present and the rest are from me and her dad.
Scandi Mummy – Growing up in Denmark where we celebrate on the eve of the 24th Father Christmas comes then, which often means a male in the family sneaks off after dinner and comes back as the big man himself. He delivers some of the presents and the rest are underneath the tree and will be opened that evening.
Joanna Victoria – We have Santa we do it that there is one gift from Santa the rest is from us and family members.
Boo, Roo and Tigger Too – Santa exists in our house, but we have always explained that he brings one gift. The rest come from us, family and friends. I don’t feel it is right to allow Santa to take all the credit.
Bumps, Babies, Tots and Teens Mummy Diaries – We believe here. I’m a mum of 5. My eldest two sons are 15 and 12. They obviously don’t believe but they’re amazing at playing along for their 3 younger brothers who are 3, 5 And 7. As far as they’re concerned Santa brings all their gifts. It’s amazing to make memories and see their eyes light up to the magic of the Christmas season. They’re memories they will cherish into their adulthood and pass onto their families in the future.
Odd Hogg – Santa is very much here in our house – not that Piglet understands that yet. He brings a stocking full of little bits and pieces and one “big” present. This year it is a Toddlebike. All the rest of the presents come from Mummy and Daddy. I love the magic that Santa brings, but at the same time I want Piglet to know that we work hard to make the money to buy most of his gifts and you can’t just get something for nothing.
Hello Little Lovely – We do Santa; our boys are 5 and 1. Our eldest sends letters, visits the grotto and leaves out milk and a mince pie, but for me it’s important that they grow to understand the real St Nicholas and the message of Christmas. As I grew up I understood that Santa didn’t bring the presents but he remained real to me (and still does ) as he’s the inspiration behind the gift giving, so really he does send gifts after all!
Are Pops – We do Santa, although Pops calls him Farmer Christmas haha – He only brings her one gift at Christmas (I want to get the credit for something!)
The Sensory Seeker – Does Santa exist in your house? – No he’s not in my house he lives in the North Pole! He collects them and decides whether people have been good or bad and then delivers them if you are good – including extra from naughty children if you have been exceptionally (this is why daddy is also surprised to see what you have got lol).
The Ish Mother – My 5 year old daughter has always known Santa is pretend, but we play along a little for fun. I just didn’t feel right lying to my kids about it. She knows that other children do believe and I’ve taught her to respect that and to play the game with them.
Raising a Ragamuffin – We have Santa but he only brings a couple of small presents. I read an article about poorer families where children think they’ve been naughty because they got very little compared to other children from wealthier families. It’s one of the reasons I don’t like the concept of a naughty and a nice list.
This Mumma Needs Tea – We have big gifts from Santa and some from us. Yes, it means the big man gets all the credit. But they’ll grow up eventually and realise who the true hero gift givers were all those years.
A Mum Doing Her Best – We have santa in our house. He just brings chocolate, socks a little presents. The kids send him their lists and santa passes the lists on to us so we can buy the presents.
Mummies Waiting – Santa exists in our house, he doesn’t provide any gifts, mum, dad, nanny etc buy them and send them to Santa to be wrapped and have the magic added.
Kate on Thin Ice – My children were pretty much trained from birth that Santa is non-negotiable and that once the stop believing they stop getting gifts. Probably sounds very harsh but I want them to still believe in the magic on Christmas Eve as I still do convinced that one day I will look up in the sky and see him.
Ethan and Evelyn – I love the magic of Christmas, and using the line: Santa is watching you.
Teddy Bears and Cardigans – Mine are grown up but Christmas was special in our house, lots of presents from Father Christmas, lots of decorations and lots of magic. One Christmas Eve as I was putting my son to bed (he was about 5) he heard Santas sleigh bells, we looked out of the window but didn’t see him. When he was older and realised there was no Santa he was so pleased he’d worked it out. He then became Santa for his younger sister, he was told not to break the magic for anyone else and as far as I know, he never did. We love it all.
Me Annie Bee – In our house we buy the presents and send them to Santa. He keeps an eye on us all and decides whether we have been good enough to bring them to us or give them to someone else. The stockings on the bed come from Santa.
Awaybies – I always had Santa growing up, even when I was a young adult my mum would still do a stocking! With my kids now we always have stocking presents from Santa, which are small and usually inexpensive, wrapped individually (I get hubby to do this), and then main presents are from mummy and daddy. I didn’t believe in Santa from age 5 (not sure how I found out) but I’m currently still trying to keep the magic alive for my kids and the oldest is 9! Not sure how much longer the believing will last.
Glasgow with Kids – We have Santa gifts. When my kids write to Santa they can ask him for up to 3 things. Those are things that they get from Santa. My daughter is the only one who’s old enough to understand that, and this year she chose small things. But now that I’ve started that tradition I guess if she asked him for 3 incredibly expensive things I’d need to have a discussion… Everyone sends the gifts they buy to Santa to have the magic added though, and then he delivers them on Christmas night. (Otherwise my toddlers’ lack of self-control would be an issue!)
My Parenting Journey – When I was a kid my siblings and I have always enjoyed the concept of Santa. It was a special memory for us. Looking back, I didn’t think I was fooled into believing in Santa and I never thought that my parents lied to me. It didn’t even matter if it was a lie. It was a fun moment in childhood and I wouldn’t want my kids to miss out on that.
What do you do…?
I find it so interesting that so many people do the whole Santa thing so differently. From going all out to refusing to lie to the kids I can see every perspective. Who knows who is doing it right. I think there is a lot to be said for the excitement and magic of Christmas but I wonder how much of that really should rely on believing in Santa.
So what do you do? Please leave me a comment because I would love to know. I feel a little like I have opened a can of worms as I really didn’t realise there were so many different possibilities for a make believe character.