My stocking is the one on the right. The empty one. Now, I realize that in this case, "Santa" has a demanding job in the technology field, and is especially overwhelmed with work since all of his employees were stuck in their homes for part of the week with no electricity and no way into the office because of flooding, but still. I do not like the empty stocking. It just looks so sad.
A bunch of people are blogging about Santa this week and what to tell their kids. Read here, here and here.
Neither Daniel nor I was raised believing in Santa. In my case, we didn't even celebrate Christmas. At the time, the church I was attending believed that Christmas was mainly pagan and should be avoided. My parents still don't really celebrate Christmas much. I've embraced it to a certain extent. I like the presents and I like Christmas Eve services. It's a great time to worship and I always enjoy the sermons and music. Daniel's parents were more of the "why give Santa credit for things we bought" school of thought. And they were in Hong Kong when Daniel was little, and I'm pretty sure Santa isn't really a big deal over there. His parents still don't do Christmas very well. Last time we were up there we went to Christmas Eve service, and that was it. Gave each other gifts that no one opened in front of anyone else. It was kind of strange.
But now we have the little one, and he's going to have friends who believe in Santa. Even though I was raised not believing in Santa, my parents were careful to teach my brother and I to respect others and to not explain to our little friends the "error of their ways". And we just smiled when people asked what Santa was bringing us that year. I'd like to teach Ethan to do the same, to respect others' beliefs, even though we don't plan to have him believe in Santa as a person.
I really hope that we can manage to keep Christmas as a religious holiday in our family, and not make it all about the presents. I'm the present-fiend in our family, so I'm actually the one who most needs to be reminded about that. :) And I know that presents are going to be more exciting to Ethan for quite a while than church services and the Nativity story are, but we can do our best to keep the holiday focused on Christ.
But I still want some presents to hurry up and show up in my stocking.