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Thoughts For Thursday: No More Cookies For Santa?

December 16, 2010 · 36 comments

in Parenting, Thoughts For Thursday

Well, it is official now, I no longer have any children that believe in Santa anymore.  My youngest is 12, and I know he pretty much knew there was no Santa awhile ago, but it was flat out confirmed for him at school the other day.

I have mixed emotions about this.  On one hand, I always felt like a big fat liar when I talked about Santa to my kids and put out cookies and carrots for Santa and the reindeer.  On the other hand, I loved the excitement the kids had about Santa.  I never held it over their heads that Santa was going to blow them off at Christmas if they didn’t behave though.  We just enjoyed the ‘fun’ part of Santa.  I often wonder how anyone older than 3 can really believe in Santa if they really sat and analyzed the whole Santa story.  But, I guess that maybe it is just human nature to not want to question all that is fun and good.  Plus, I wonder if some kids worry that if they no longer ‘believe’, then presents will no longer be left under the tree.

I will say though, my life is much easier now that nobody ‘believes’ in Santa anymore.  My daughter can just show me something she thinks she might like in a catalog and not worry about little ears overhearing that mom buys the Christmas presents.  If we are low on money I will be able to say ‘sorry kiddos, Christmas is going to be light this year’.  (Not that it is ever very heavy in the first place.)  I will be able to make noise with reckless abandon on Christmas Eve as I arrange presents under the tree without worrying that the kids might hear all the racket and get suspicious.  I have more Christmas freedom, and I will be able to go to bed earlier on Christmas Eve!  Plus I won’t have to take a bite out of all those cookies left on the hearth when I am already stuffed from a giant Christmas Eve celebration.  (I never cared about presenting the illusion that the reindeer bit into the carrots.  I just whipped them outside and said the reindeer must have eaten them all.)

So, even though my kids seemed to have outgrown yet another phase of childhood, it isn’t all bad.  I just keep trying to do my best to embrace the positives and enjoy all the great things each phase brings.  However, I don’t know that I will be so upbeat when they have all left for college!

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{ 34 comments… read them below or add one }

First Gen American December 16, 2010 at 6:41 am

The carrot comment made me laugh. For parties my husband always volunteers for bringing the veggie platter and then brings something that will actually be eaten instead.

December goes way too fast.

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Kris December 16, 2010 at 10:03 am

Sneaky husband! I like that.

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101 Centavos December 16, 2010 at 6:46 am

Our youngest (11) also definitely announced without the shadow of a doubt that there is no Santa. He was on the fence for a few years, but this year he made it official, like your 12 yr old. Man, but they grow up too fast…

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Kris December 16, 2010 at 10:03 am

Isn’t it funny how they proclaim it to us? I think it is that final confirmation on what they think. They say they don’t believe, but they need that final ‘stamp’ that Santa really isn’t real.

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Moneycone December 16, 2010 at 7:09 am

WHAT?! There is no Santa?!! :)
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Kris December 16, 2010 at 9:51 am

Oh Moneycone, I am so sorry. Don’t worry, I still believe. If you believe he is real, then he IS real.

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Nicole December 16, 2010 at 8:01 am

Our little guy is just getting Santa for the first time, though he asked if he lives in the jungle with the dinosaur that looks like Elvis (he actually said the technical name) like at the North Pole on Dinosaur Train.

I don’t remember ever believing that Santa was real, I only remember believing that he was make-believe like the land of make-believe on Mr. Rogers Neighborhood. At the same time I remember knowing that was a big secret and not to tell other kids who believed. (I remember thinking with disgust about the kid in second grade who announced that Santa was our parents… DUH, but you weren’t supposed to SAY that.) I think maybe I was too well-read, as the Santa thing is discussed in a lot, and even young I read a lot of fantasy (or “magic books”).
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Kris December 16, 2010 at 9:50 am

Nicole – I actually think books are part of what made my kids all suspect in the first place. (Ok, they were comic books like Foxtrot, but still…)

There always seems to be that obnoxious kid that has to ruin it for those around him. I wonder if those kids ever look back at themselves once they are adults and think “I was such a jerk”.

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Nicole December 16, 2010 at 10:35 pm

So this evening, DC says, “Santa is REAL. [Friend's name] says he is.” Apparently in between dinosaur discussions they have these metaphysical kinds of conversations.
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Roshawn @ Watson Inc December 16, 2010 at 8:31 am

The carrot did make me laugh as well! Growing up in a family where we were flat-out told there was no Santa, I don’t feel deprived of a necessary experience per se. That said, I can understand why people do it for the reasons you sited. It is indeed fun to watch someone get excited.
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Kris December 16, 2010 at 9:48 am

So Shawn, do you think you will tell your kids there is a Santa?

I loved watching their excitement, but I always had a guilty little pang over my lying. (I need to relax!)

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Roshawn @ Watson Inc December 16, 2010 at 3:37 pm

sited should be cited… I think we will just tell our kids personally :)
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DoNotWait December 16, 2010 at 8:54 am

I guess that when a kid does not believe in Santa anymore its because he is starting to lose its childish innocence. I always find it a little bit sad as I love children imagination and world of fantasy. I always tried to keep it myself (which means sometimes being annoying to my family and friends!) but I hope my children will believe it for a while. I don’t feel bad about being a liar, I love making up stories with the children around me. I convinced one of them I could get invisible and his aunt made him believe her cat was going to school like him! He is only 5 and I am sure he will discover the truth soon enough, but to me it is more like getting into their world than lying.
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Kris December 16, 2010 at 9:47 am

DNW- it sounds like you will be able to keep up the Santa thing for awhile since you enjoy it so much too. (Assuming the kids don’t ruin it at school.)

It was fun, and I dreaded when nobody believed anymore. However, I can say it wasn’t as bad as I thought.

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DoNotWait December 16, 2010 at 11:29 am

Yeah, school has such an influence sometimes! You always have this one kid, at 7-8 years old, who try to ruin it all for the others saying: c’mon guys, you babies STILL believe in that lie?! I know, I got traumatized… LOL
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Carrie December 16, 2010 at 9:22 am

My children are all teenagers now. Honestly I found it a relief when they stopped believing in Santa. It was hard work keeping up the charade. We still leave out egg nog and cookies though, because that’s a tradition :-)
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Kris December 16, 2010 at 9:46 am

I can’t believe how much easier this is, I have to say I love it! I don’t have to lie anymore, and we can discuss Christmas presents anytime! It is great.

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FB @ FabulouslyBroke.com December 16, 2010 at 9:23 am

When did your kids stop believing in Santa?
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Kris December 16, 2010 at 9:45 am

Well my youngest stopped just about a month ago, at the age of 12. (He will always be a ‘little kid’)
My other 2 kids stopped at 10.

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Samurai December 16, 2010 at 10:34 am

How could you reveal the truth!!

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Kris December 16, 2010 at 10:41 am

Well I am hoping that people younger than 13 are not reading my blog. If you are older than 13 and still believe, then I am sure my blog will not convince you otherwise.

I apologize if I ruined the dream for you Sam…

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Crystal @ BFS December 16, 2010 at 11:28 am

I never believed in Santa. My mom didn’t come out and say “he’s not real”, but we were all told that Santa was just another “spirit of Christmas”. We were flat out told that some kids truly believe and we should keep our mouths shut since it is mean to hurt people’s feelings. I thankfully never blabbed and was never around if some bully did.

I still love(d) Christmas Eve and sometimes still glance into the sky just for the fun of it (and then laugh at myself because if I did see some fat guy in a suit on our roof, I’m more likely to call 911 then to be happy about it). I also still glace into lakes to see Texas versions of the Loch Ness monster, lol. I really want to experience something out-of-this-world. :-)

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Kris December 16, 2010 at 9:09 pm

It is funny how scary the thought of a big fat man coming out your fireplace really is!

Do you wish you would have believed for even a little while?

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Crystal @ BFS December 17, 2010 at 2:24 pm

Nope. I still got to REALLY enjoy Christmas and never had the moment of sadness other kids have to go through. The “spirit of Christmas” thing worked for me. :-)

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retirebyforty December 16, 2010 at 12:00 pm

I don’t think I will deceive my kid about Santa. I guess it’s really up to the Mrs. :)
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Kris December 16, 2010 at 9:11 pm

I just asked my 16 year old if he was glad he believed in Santa, and he said yes, and that it was really fun. He enjoyed the suspense of wondering if Santa was going to show up or not and what he would bring. He also found it interesting how Santa lived in the North and all. So I guess I won’t feel guilty anymore1

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The Grouch December 16, 2010 at 1:20 pm

As soon as my oldest knew he deliberately told his younger brother and sister, spoiling Christmas for them. So neither of them had the illusion for very long.
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Kris December 16, 2010 at 9:12 pm

It is interesting how the oldest sibling will do that sometimes! I am not scarred from it, but I do wish I would have believed a bit longer.

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Suba @ Wealth Informatics December 16, 2010 at 7:17 pm

I never knew about Santa until I went to college. Now I want to believe in Santa :) I think I missed a lot of fun.
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Kris December 16, 2010 at 9:07 pm

Oh Suba, that is sad! I barely have memories of believing in Santa, but I still feel so happy when Christmas songs start and I think about baking cookies.

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Molly On Money December 16, 2010 at 8:12 pm

My kids knew there was no Santa years ago (I’m a bad liar) but we kept it up. My daughter just looked on FB and found out that her Grandfather played Santa today at the local community center. If she didn’t know it before she knows it now!
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Kris December 16, 2010 at 8:18 pm

Darn facebook! You can always explain away Santa being grandpa though because there is no way the real guy could be hanging out in malls, he has to be in the north pushing all those elves to make toys! (Oh and he also has to get fat according to some of the TV specials.)

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Little House December 16, 2010 at 9:39 pm

I was subbing in a kindergarten class the other day and the kids couldn’t stop talking about their Christmas trees or their decorations their parents have hung up. The excitement was quite catchy, so it’s easy to see how much fun it must have been watching your own kids through the years. However, it must be a bit of a relieve now that you don’t have to “sneak” around. ;)
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Aloysa December 16, 2010 at 9:54 pm

I think I believed in Santa (we called him grandfather Frost) till I was about 7! The the truth was revealed to me by my friends.
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