While doing aerobics at the Senior center, we wore bells on our shoes and danced to Christmas Music. When Adele played, “I saw Momma kissing Santa Claus,” it made me stop and think about my parents. I know Momma loved our Santa Claus with all her heart. Mom and Dad made Christmas special for us kids. The Christmas holiday was the highlight of the year. December seemed like the longest month of the year.
“How many more days til Christmas, Mom?” We got presents only on our birthdays and at Christmas, “May we look at the toy catalog?” We spent many hours laying on our stomachs on the carpeted floor, close to the floor furnace looking at the toys in the Sears & Roebuck Catalog,
“I want some Lincoln logs,” Dennis exclaimed,
“Here is a tin barn with farm animals, I pointed out.”
“I want this doll house,” Dee shared! We spent hours dreaming about what Santa might bring.
If there was an argument amongst us kids, Dad would say, “I think I just saw Santa peeking in the window. He is looking to see which kids were naughty or nice?” Then Mom would burst out in song, “Santa Claus is Coming to Town.”
Our home had a nativity scene on the corner coffee table. It had a small blue light in the corner. “Dee, look, doesn’t baby Jesus look cozy and warm lying in his manger? She picked up baby Jesus and started to walk away. I scolded Dee Dee. “You bring baby Jesus back or I’m going to tell Santa, and he won’t bring you any toys, because you’ve been naughty.” She immediately returned the baby.
Dad would cut a cedar tree from the rows of trees that surrounded the farm stead. It was placed on the window seat in a bucket of sand. The fresh scent of cedar filled our home. It was a family project decorating with bubble lights, tinsel and homemade popcorn strings. A cardboard angel with gold tinsel wings and angel hair topped the tree.
As Christmas drew nearer, we watched the gifts closely. “Dennis, Dee, look, there are more presents under the tree.” Mom would hear us, “If you touch one package, I am going to take them all away!” I was so eager to pick up and rattle the packages but was too scared to do it. My Mom always meant what she said. The presents under the tree were from Mom and Dad.
Santa came every Christmas Eve while Dad was doing chores. He would use the front door of the house. That was the only time that door was used all year long. We begged Dad, “Please don’t go milk the cows till Santa comes.”
“The cows can’t wait,” Dad reminded us “Chores have to be done.”
Soon after Dad left to do chores, we heard “Ho Ho Ho, and MERRY Christmas!” “It’s Santa” we squealed with delight running towards him and hugging him. He sat each of us on his lap and asked if we had been good that year. I didn’t tell him about Dennis dumping me on the sled, and Dee running off with baby Jesus from the nativity scene,.
Santa had all the presents stuffed in a great big brown burlap sack. They looked just like the old feed sacks Dad got seed in for the cattle. Santa probably had a lot of these sacks left over from feeding his reindeer. I was amazed he always knew our names. I thought it must be hard remembering all the names of the boys and girls in the entire world!
“I have the reindeer parked behind the barn, Dandy, so I will stop by and say Hello to your Dad.”
We wanted to run down to the barn and see Rudolph, but we were so excited about our presents that we quickly forgot about seeing the reindeer.
Shortly, after Santa left, Dad came in the back door! “Hey kids, guess who came to see me when I was milking the cows!”
Prayer focus: I wish you the happiest and most joyful Christmas! Santa made Christmas special. But, may the peace of that night in the manger linger in your home and near your hearts for days to come! Merry Christmas to You and Yours.