The Christmas Lists

Three months ago my kids started working on their Christmas lists. Three months ago! That means that for 12 weeks my wife and I have been told, repeatedly, what they expect Santa to bring them. It’s quite a load.

In fact, there are so many items on the lists that each boy taped another piece of paper to the original version. It contains items like “Nintendo Switch” (that ain’t happening), high-end Pokemon cards that do a lot of damage? and Lego sets with record-breaking amounts of pieces. In other words, these kids are shooting the moon. In fact, I’m surprised they didn’t ask for the moon. It might have been cheaper than some of the other items on their lists.

This is part of the joy of the season — seeing my kids get excited about Santa’s visit, worrying about whether their behavior will measure up to their grandiose expectations and, hopefully, teaching them valuable lessons about giving and receiving gifts and why we celebrate this blessed time of year.

The boys add to their lists every time a toy catalog arrives at the house or a commercial for a new toy, video game or other popular item airs on tv. They display a commitment to their lists that rivals any commitment to schoolwork or extracurricular activity. It is all consuming.

Like any parent I’m tempering expectations. “You want an Xbox and a robot that will clean your room and a $300 Lego set? I don’t think Santa’s gonna be able to swing all of that,” I say. “Well, we’ll see,” they tell me, confident in the big man’s ability to fulfill their every wish. In fact, their biggest concern right now is not the size of their haul but whether Santa can access our house. We don’t have a chimney so he can’t enter through his preferred method of ingress and the boys keep asking me not to set the alarm on Christmas Eve so Santa won’t set it off, alerting the police and delaying him on his journey.

I’ve assured them that Santa will have full access to our home.

Between now and Christmas we have lots to do. We have to visit the jolly old elf and show him our lists. I hope the people behind us in line have lots of patience because that effort could take a while. I’m sure that between the time they speak to Santa they’ll add a dozen or so more items to their wish list, prompting me to hide all the writing implements in the house.

Finally, Mommy & Daddy must perform that timeless parenting ritual — weighing which items on our kids’ Christmas lists we can afford and which ones are best suited to our kids’ aptitudes, needs and desires. Should be fun.

(Photo by Rockin’Rita on Foter.com / CC BY-NC-ND)

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The Beginning
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Two boys, one wife and a ton of material. I live for family and I'm one of the most blessed people you will ever meet.

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