This is how it’s gonna go down in the Millner/Chiles household from now on and forever more: Any kid who comes to my house talking about “There is no Santa Claus” will not be invited back until June, when nobody’s thinking about Christmas.
I just don’t need your kid ruining it for my kids.
On the real, my kids believe in Santa Claus—period. The red suit. The jolly laugh. The reindeer and the sleigh and the jingle bells and all of the reindeer—especially Rudolph. All of that.
And for this, I’m grateful. Because I’m a firm believer that children should be allowed to be children—that the magic and sanctity of being a kid should be respected and protected as long as humanly possible. In my house, letting my babies believe in Santa preserves that sanctity—helps them hold on to the magic of Christmas, and their childhood, just a little while longer.
Around this time of year, that magic sparkles. We’ve been making home made presents, eating festive cupcakes, and blasting Christmas music—classic offerings from Kirk Franklin, Yolanda Adams, Dianne Reeves, Will Downing, Tony Bennett, Faith, James Brown, and Stevie, and a bunch of new ones by Brian McKnight and Harry Connick. Last night, the girls were upstairs singing Donny Hathaway's “This Christmas” while they made “Santa Soup” on the play kitchen Santa brought them last year (the kitchen is the showpiece in their “restaurant,” which they lovingly christened “Lacey’s Grill.” No, I have no clue who in the world Lacey is.) Lila wore her blue tutu dress to the grand opening, and sang while she took my order. The “Santa Soup” was divine.
Seriously, can it get any better than that? They’re excited, you know? Bouncing around. Giddy. Because Santa is coming to town.
Here’s what’s also real in our household, though: My kids know that Jesus is the reason for the season. After they inspect their gifts from the big guy, we make breakfast together and, after Grace, we sing “Happy Birthday” to Him (the Stevie Wonder version, of course), and then remind each other how blessed we are to be surrounded by a beautiful, loving, close-knit family. That right there? That’s the true gift of Christmas—a gift that’s with us every single day of the year.
And Santa? He’s the icing on the cake for my babies—the cake that’s served only once a year, for one day.
Now, I’m not knocking the parents who tell their kids there is no Santa—what you do in your house, what you tell your kids is between you and yours. But please, before you send your kid to my place, have the talk with her—the one where you explain that people have the right to their beliefs, and that sometimes, those beliefs don’t necessarily jibe with everyone else’s, and so it’s best that maybe we keep the whole “Santa isn’t real” talk to ourselves.
Especially if you want to see Mari and Lila around the holidays.
Otherwise, they’ll send you a nice “we sure do miss you” note.
Speaking of notes, my ace, Melanie, over at Lucky Paperie, sent over the most adorable stationery for Lila and Mari, and some really beautiful note cards for their teachers’ Christmas gifts. Brava, Mel!
She’s also going to be sending two lucky MyBrownBaby readers—Stacey at The Blessed Nest, and Gina at Queen Rabbit's Realm, custom stationery the two won in last week’s Lucky Paperie giveaway. Congrats, my loves—I know Melanie is going to send you something breathtakingly beautiful.
AND, my girls over at ESSENCE are looking for super moms--African-American working mothers who manage to balance having a great career with their responsibilities to family. Want to share your secrets to success with the most well-read magazine for and about black women? Find out how here.
Until next week… * snaps fingers and hums “Santa Claus Is Coming To Town”—the Jackson 5 version, of course *