Wednesday, November 16, 2005


Emmett walked into the bathroom today while I was doing my business--the standing up kind. When I was finished, he clapped his hands and said, "Again!"

Jackson found the Toyz R Us insert in the newspaper this weekend. His mom had him circle everything that he wanted. Yesterday I came down for lunch, my wife handed me the section and said, "You've got to see this."

The pages were marked-up like a bad English paper. He decided to shop for his little brother too, and so I found such items circles as Dancing Elmo and Baby Einstein items--the latter being crossed out after consultation with mommy. Jackson wants every remote control truck, boat, helicopter and plane. There are food makers, magic kits, tool chests, robo-raptors, race kits, boom boxes, video games and consoles, even a Gameboy--though he already has one--because it's yellow and has a picture of Spongebob on it. Roughly, we're looking at a ten thousand dollar wish list. Somebody is going to be disappointed this Christmas.

Every year I anxiously awaited the JC Pennies Christmas catalog, and pored over it's pages with the same intensity. Sure, Christmas has become a marketers holiday, and I understand the consternation of my fellow blogger Mr. Schprock, but the holiday for me has always been about just this. My step-mother used to remind me that it was about the birth of Jesus. Every year our nativity set had an empty manger until Christmas morning when my brother and I, alternating every season, would unwrap the baby Jesus and deliver him to the waiting Mary, Joseph, Wise Men, camels, and donkeys. Ultimately though, Christmas was about making a list and checking it twice. And now my own kids get to live the fantasy for a few years, and it is my honor to propagate the sweet lie.


Ultra Toast Mosha God said...

It warms my heart to know that the widely accepted pop-culture image of Santa Claus (red coat and hat with white borders) was invented by Coca-Cola.

Scott said...

Yeah, isn't that something else? It makes me long for a simpler time.

jenbeauty said...

LOL...again please!!

We have the Target catelog with the coupons. My dear girl cut out all the coupons for me so I would know what goes with what. Do you think that means she does not believe in Santa?

Perpetuating that lie for as long as I can Scott.

Eve said...

I used to wait for that catalogue too. And being that Christmas Day is my birthday too, I would circle twice as many stuff!
Jamie Lee Curtis once said on The Rosie O'Donnell show that there wasn't a Santa Claus and she didn't want her child believing in such stuff. Rosie really got a bit p.o.'d with her - me too. How dare she announce on a program that kids watched that there wasn't a Santa Claus. It wasn't her place to decided what other people's children can and cannot believe in. I felt sorry for her child - it's in believing in the magic of Christmas, Easter, the Tooth Fairy,etc. that form the basis of a child's imagination and creativity. I also no longer watch Jamie Lee Curtis' movies just because she's in them. Can you tell that it still bothers me? :-)

Scott said...

Jen and Eve - I was tempted by the same Curtis idealism to tell my children the truth from the beginning too, but I remembered how special it was when I was a kid, how my brother and I had trouble sleeping the night before, how we tried to catch Santa in the act, how the cookies we layed out were always gone in the morning with a nice thank-you note. It's all in fun, and when I finally knew the truth I didn't feel resentful at all, only sad that I was too old now to escape into that fantasy anymore. Eve has it right when she says it sparks the creative mind.

Mrs.T said...

Christmas is a pagan holiday isn't it?

I love it, because I love to watch the faces of my children light up thinking magic is real and anything is possible.

trinamick said...

My mother always told us such things weren't real, and I don't think it stunted our creativity. I still believed in fairies and Neverland until I was...wait, maybe I still do. :P

Beth said...

My son is 11 and STILL does this with fliers. It's crazy! This year will be tight, but they're both handling it well. They know their mom knows how to get more bang for her buck. lol

mr. schprock said...

Actually, I've lightened up quite a bit. Instead of just bituminous coal, which is really pretty ordinary, the kids are getting anthracite this year — a much higher grade! I can just see their faces now…

Tee said...

LOL - I have a similar list from my 7 year old. We got a catalog from in the mail, as well as a pullout section in the Nick Jr. magazine. Circles, circles, everywhere. I sat him down and told him that just because he wants it doesn't mean he gets it. He totally understands. He's cool like that... It's still nice to dream. I also have loving memories of the JCPenny catalog. We had to use 3 different colored markers (I have 2 sisters) LOL.

Are you also telling the Santa Claus lie? ... I couldn't do it to mine. I tell them it's a nice story and we can "pretend" he came. They're just as excited about that.

Like your stepmom, I try to keep the focus on Jesus. I think my parents acheived a good balance and I'm doing the same. (Plus we have Hannukah thrown in because my Dad didn't convert to Christianity until I was 16.) LOL.

Think I should throw Kwanza in for the heck of it? (wink)

Scott said...

Mrs T - It's just starting for me, so stay tuned.

Trina - I don't have any hard-line opinion about it. I almost did the same thing, but I fell back into my habit when it came down to it.

Beth - Yeah, I did it for a long time too. It's great to be a kid.

Mr Scrooge, er Schprock - I envy your kids. I wish I could be a fly on your wall on Christmas morning!

Tee - I understand why you would just let them know. What kid is going to care really as long as the presents are under the tree Christmas morning.

Sadie Lou said...

I remember playing "store" with my sisters. We would go through the JC Penny catalog and pick one item on every page that we could have. We'd simply point at the item and say "mine".
My mom thought we sounded spoiled.
I tought my kids how to play the game. It's so fun.
I'm like you--Christmas is the best when you're on the other side of Santa.

Trevor Record said...

When I was a little kid, on christmas I fully expected to get a jeep for christmas because I'd asked for it. I was having wild visions of riding it through the forest and desert every night. Never mind that I was 6 and wouldn't have been able to reach the pedal.

Chloe said...

My parents would talk about Santa when I was little, but I never believed them because we lived in an apartment and had no chimney.

The Zombieslayer said...

Sweet post. I love Christmas, for this very reason. It's for making magic for the kids. I still see Christmas as magical and I'm glad you are making it so for your kids.

Kathleen said...

I used to go through the JCPenney catalog and copy painstakingly every toy in which I was even slightly interested. I never ever got any of it.

My brother and his wife are Born Again and they actually told my niece that there was no Santa. I mean the kid was 2 or 3 and informed me there was no Santa. How freaking sad is that?

We did the whole carry Baby Jesus into the creche before we were allowed to look at the presents under the tree too. My little sister always go to do it though - or at least, that's the way my poor neglect middle child mind remembers it.

magnetbabe said...

Ugh. I'm completely torn on this topic. I think it's so cute when kids believe in Santa and its all magical and fun. When I was a kid though, I was terrified of Santa. I thought he was totally creepy and didn't like that he came into our house or that little kids sat on his lap. I avoided him at the malls and was so relieved when my parents told me the truth. And don't get me started on a giant bunny for Easter.

Scott said...

Sadie - I know what you mean. But watching the kids get excited is the other side of the fun, huh?

Trevor - I know how you feel. We were similar kids I think.

Chloe - Then you are a free thinker indeed. I waved away those annoying flaws in logic.

Zombie - Thanks, I'm also a sucker for Christmas, after the stress of getting ready for it has passed.

Kathleen - I think it's sad if they are doing it for the reason that Christmas is about Jesus. Kids could care less about that, and they don't need to be adults yet.

MagnetBabe - See, the scientist was in you at an early age. How cute!

Kathleen said...

Scott - Exactly. But when at the age of two they declared my niece a sinner because she did something wrong, I'm not sure there's a lot of hope for them.