Funny things can happen when you’re gathered round the table. The conversation can meander from one juicy topic to another. Of course, when Christmas is just around the corner, and you’re busy making marzipan while listening to carols (the only time Michael Buble is allowed in this house), the topics automatically centre on all things Christmas.
I was trying to explain the REAL meaning of Christmas to the kids: the humble birth of Jesus, the importance of giving to those in need, the love and joy of coming together as a family. And how Santa, Christmas baubles and candy canes are all modern-day constructs of pop culture…
“So Joseph was Baby Jesus’* dad?” asked C2.
“Well, Christians believe that Jesus is the Son of God, so Joseph was actually Jesus’ foster father,” I tried to explain.
“What’s that?” asked C1
“Hmm, it’s like a step-father. Not the biological father,” I answered.
“Well, he seemed like a good guy. Good thing Joseph was not evil like Snow White’s step-mother, or I don’t know what would have happened to Jesus.”
*The grammar nerd in me needs to explain that the possessive noun of Jesus is always Jesus’ – not Jesus’s. Just put the apostrophe after Jesus without the extra S.
C1 and C2 were bickering over whose turn it was to crack the eggs and whose turn it was to put in the caster sugar while I was whizzing the dough for the Date Rolls in the food processor (thanks, Gaynor!).
Exasperated, I said sternly, “If you don’t stop this nonsense, Christmas will be cancelled!”
“Huh?!?” they replied, “How can you cancel Christmas?”
“I’ll give all the toys that Santa brings you to the poor kids,” I said, making it up as I went along.
“But even the poor kids get gifts for Christmas, mum. Santa doesn’t care if you’re rich or poor. Surely he would give them nice pressies, too.”
If only. IF ONLY.
“I wonder if Santa got our Christmas letters?” said C1. “Mum, did you put a stamp?”
“Yes,” I replied. “I’m sure he got them. Though I’m not sure he’ll understand C2’s handwriting.”
“Well, I feel kind of bad for Santa. He’s got to deliver all those toys to every single kid in the whole wide world in just one night,” said C1.
C2 replied, “I feel bad for Santa because he’s only got one outfit to wear his whole entire life!”
What are your plans for Christmas? Do you make sweets or bake? Sing Christmas carols? Do you have any favourite childhood memories of the holidays? Is it a good time of the year for you?