Preface

— why I wrote this book

Dear Santa,

I want to say thank you. Thank you for being such a nice guy and a great manager. You somehow take care of happy little sugar-buzzed Elves, you win the hearts of small children, you spread Holiday cheer, and most of all you bring the “magic” into a world that lacks hope and excitement.

I know that you love cookies and you bring gifts to all sorts of boys and girls. You are HR’s favorite employee and yet it grieves me to inform you that you can’t do this job any longer.

You are being replaced.

You see while you are fun and magical you take away from the real magic of the Christmas season. You distract us from the meaning of Christmas and while you are one of the nicest guys I’ve ever met I’m sorry to say you are being let go, you are fired, and you won’t be visiting our home anymore.

Sincerely,

Jera’s mom

Harsh hu? I know I felt bad writing this pretend character a letter too. So many memories celebrating this jolly man, taking photos at Macy’s, and writing letters. But I knew Santa had to be fired from our home, I knew that the genuine magic of the season came from my belief and hope in God sending His own son to the world.

Without Santa could their really be Christmas magic?

As a creative, somewhat over the top person I always dreamed of the age when my kids would wake to glitter snow trails leading out our fireplace and of course gifts stacked and labeled from Santa. But I struggled with this idea of Christmas traditions and how to make them fit into our Christian view for 3 years now. I read countless blogs on how moms incorporated Santa into Christmas and made it “Christian” but as much as I wanted to make it work I felt like it just wasn’t a good fit for our family. When my 3 year old told me what Christmas was all about I knew I couldn’t settle anymore with the option of Santa + Jesus + tons of gifts = Christian Christmas.

I’ll never forget her saying, “Christmas is about Jesus but I know it is really about gifts and cookies Santa too.”

Our actions spoke a million times louder then our words and I knew I couldn’t be upset with her answer. We were all pretending the season was about Jesus while we focused on everything else, I mean everything, even Christmas church service was about pretty little dresses and patent leather shoes. It wasn’t like we didn’t drop change into the little red buckets outside of stores, or buy gifts for those less fortunate, and it wasn’t that any of those things were wrong I just felt our core focus was wrapped around something else, everything else, but the reason for the season.

“Could the story of Jesus actually be fun? Could we dust off those nativity