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I Believe in Santa Claus

Sometimes we feel like there are two opposing messages of Christmas; the religious celebration of Jesus Christ’s birth and the commercialized worship of Santa Claus.  I love the book,  I Believe in Santa Claus (by Diane G. Adamson and illustrated by M. Chad Randall) because it focuses on ways in which Santa teaches us about Christ.

With very simple sentences, this book compares six basic qualities of Santa with six basic qualities of Jesus.  In each comparison we are invited to consider how Santa reminds us of the true meaning of Christmas.

For instance, on one page we read of Santa:  “He loves little children.”  When, in turn, we are invited to think about what Jesus is like, we also read, “He loves little children.”

The closing of the book says, “Santa Claus is a symbol of Christmas.  The symbols of Christmas can remind us of the true meaning of Christmas.  The symbols of Christmas remind me of Christ.  So, I believe in Santa Claus.”

A few of the things I like about this book:
Very few words, and straightforward statements.  I also like the illustrations, the list of Christmas symbols and scriptures at the end of the book, as well as the statement by the author at the end.  I love having another tool in our home to merge the idea of Santa Claus with the message and meaning of Christmas.   My children enjoy reading it and it provides opportunities to discuss attributes of both Santa and the Savior that we can strive to emulate, such as being the kind of people who give good gifts and who love others.

And, for the record, I, too, believe in Santa Claus!

How the day turned out

I wish the family room looked like this.  It looked like this last week, but tonight there is stuff everywhere.

I ought to finish decorating for Christmas.  I started last week when I had an hour to work on it but haven’t made time for it since.  Part of me wants to keep it minimal, just so we can live with less “stuff” this month.  We’ll see how it turns out!

We said good-bye to my parents this morning, then got the children off to school.   I took four of my girls to the dentist to have some work done and while we were there, ran into an old friend.  I found myself reflecting later in the day on how kind our children’s dentist has always been to us, how his office is a safe place to be.  I felt prompted to ask a question while we were there today that ended up saving us $200.  I am so thankful.

While driving this afternoon I saw two girls, arms clasped, skipping down the sidewalk together.  The sight brought a smile to my face.

Our afternoon and evening took some twists and turns as various children, especially those with numb mouths, fell asleep on the couch.  Some would wake up after others fell asleep and it turned out that I had one or two people sleeping on the couch for six hours today.   At one point my three year old woke up and was very distraught so I sat down to hold her and she went back to sleep in my arms.  I looked at her lovely face and remembered how common it once was for me to hold sleeping babies.  It rarely happens now, and so I sat and enjoyed it.  There were a thousand things I could have run around and done, but it was good to sit and hold her.  Dinner was simpler than usual but there was a peaceful feeling in our home as everyone quietly accommodated others.

I finished reading a book today while holding my sleepy girl.  I don’t know about you, but I always feel like I’m dragging myself out of another world when I finish a book.    This book was interesting and I’m eager to discuss it with the ladies in our family book club.  One thing it did for me:  I want to write.

I’m feeling grateful for our city library lately.  Without the pressure of a due date I have finished more books than I would have if I owned them.  For years I have avoided that library because it never has what I’m looking for, but this year  I’ve had great luck.

I was so proud of my husband today.  He received a hurtful email that someone meant to send to someone else, and it was about him!  He really could have gone after them for it,  but chose to be kind and forgiving.  Because of his choice, the individual had an opportunity to fix the situation and we’ve had lots to chuckle about since.

Tonight I read two of my all-time favorite Christmas stories to the children.  I always love the way they center our hearts in what really matters.

Some of my late afternoon nappers are now wide awake, keeping me company on the couch while their brothers and sisters sleep soundly upstairs.   It’s nice to have company.

Life is good.

HH

Bouquet from my garden

I’ve been a miserable failure on my birthday resolutions this year, hitting only a small handful of special dates on time.  I’ve got to do a better job of planning ahead for these!

I did manage, on Saturday, to put together a bouquet of flowers for a friend whose birthday is in April.  I am loving these double tulips from my flowerbeds.

The double tulips make me anxious to see how my peonies do this year.  These showy blooms are so beautiful!

And my birthday observations really need to improve.

HH

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