Herald-Journal
Winsted-Lester Prairie Journal, Dec. 17, 2001

All the mystery and excitement of Santa Claus

By DENISE ROSENAU

What kid isn't awed this time of the year when he/she is thinking about the magic of Santa Claus? It cracks me up to hear what they come up with to explain how he works his magic. Almost all kids without a fireplace have asked how Santa will get in the house without a chimney.

My son recently asked me how Santa will find us since we just moved. I explained to him that Santa knows everything . . . including any naughty things he is considering doing.

I must admit that I enjoy the side effects of my son's good behavior. He has to be good, because he's scared to death that Santa or one of his elves will catch him doing something bad.Who says that fear is a bad thing? I'll take a well-behaved kid any day.

Some friends of ours have a 2-and-a-half year old daughter, Alison. She's a sweet little girl, and is my little buddy. Her mom and dad explained all of the Christmas have-to-knows to her, including how Santa comes down the chimney.

As they went about their business one day after explaining it all, they later found Alison laying flat on her back, looking up the fireplace trying to figure out how Santa was going to make it down.

She's gonna be a smart one, I'm afraid, so it's a good thing that we have already arranged her marriage to our little Cameron.

This is still pending her parent's approval. Of course, when my husband mentioned this to Alison's dad, he told us that our son was not allowed within 15 feet of his daughter. As far as I know, they haven't gotten the restraining order yet.

I think he'll get over his protectiveness someday. Hopefully, Alison will be able to date before she can legally vote.

Little Alison is already questioning how things work, and is trying to figure out the mystery of Santa. I have to wonder if she will be one of the kids who understands early, and misses out on the fun. I hope not.

My nine-year-old nephew, Jared, started asking questions years ago. He is one of those inquisitive kids - you know the kind - you try to pull some sort of prank on him and he figures it out before you can do it. He's busted me many-a-time. Not much gets by him, but I can't blame him, since he lives with my brother, the eternal jokester.

I don't know how much he understands about Santa this year, but I do know he's been kind to his little sister and brother, and hasn't blabbed anything. My niece, Madison, is still terrified that she will be busted by the fat man himself.

She is so concerned, in fact, that she reminds everyone, especially her continually naughty dad, that Santa watches. She's really worried for all of us. I think it's sweet.

The poor kid takes things so literally that she believes one slip up will earn her, or the rest of us, a coal-filled stocking. What a great way to keep her in line, though. I'd be willing to bet that she's never been so good.

The more I think about it, Santa has been torturing kids for years into being good. I love that guy!

Even now Santa still tortures adults. I have a musical Santa in my house that has certainly been torturing me. I don't love this thing.

As a matter of fact, I'm afraid that this Santa may end up having an unfortunate accident, because he's driving me nuts.

It's one of those hip swinging Santa's that plays "Santa Claus Is Coming to Town." He dances and swings his hips - it's absolutely adorable.

My kids love it, especially the little one. He loves it so much, in fact, that whenever he is close to it, he makes it sing.

AAARRRGGGHH! I wish Santa would never return to town, after hearing this song so many times!

If Cam is in the room with Santa, Santa must be singing. He doesn't care if we are trying to carry on a conversation or are watching Friends.

I think I better move Santa to a less annoying spot before something bad happens to him.

I don't know if the kids would look at me the same if Santa just up and disappeared. I'd hate to be the cause of anguish that would cost us tens of thousands of dollars in counselling or attach any negative feelings of Christmas to my children's subconscience mind.

Better yet, I think I will just remove his batteries. This is yet another sign of how things have changed from years ago.


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