As every parent typically does, my husband and I have thought a lot about how to communicate with our kids the real meaning of Christmas. It’s hard for little people to see much beyond Santa and the presents these days.
Last year when we asked Arabelle what the meaning of Christmas was she responded with one word, “Presents!” Aaron and I were horrified and decided that we needed to come up with a better way to get the real meaning across other than our typical method of reading the kids the Christmas story and talking to them about it. Obviously that wasn’t doing the trick!
The only problem was that we just weren’t sure how to go about it.
Yesterday morning as we were sitting in church listening to the announcements (or at least Aaron was. . . I think I was a million miles away going over my to-do list one more time), Aaron leaned over to me and whispered, “That’s it! That’s what we need to do!” I looked at him blankly (like I said though physically present the mind was far, far away!). “We’ll help deliver the stockings to the needy families!”
I immediately saw where he was going and though I hate knocking on strange peoples doors, I thought I could make an exception this time. After all, it is Christmastime and the reason for the season and all that. We decided it was the perfect way to talk about the real point of Christmas being about giving, like God gave to us. It would be perfect!
The kids were actually pretty excited. Gavin and Belle kept announcing, “It’s just like Halloween except we’re giving instead of getting!” For some reason they really liked the sound of that.
I think that is where some of the confusion started. The kids had said Halloween one too many times and it stuck in little Lily’s mind. To her it must be Halloween come again. She kept asking me why people had Christmas decorations up and she wanted to know where the skeletons were. When we knocked on doors and no one answered, she became quite concerned that the Halloween ghosts had eaten them. None of it was making sense to her at all!
Meanwhile, Gavin, all excited to hand out his stack of stockings started getting a little perturbed that no one was coming to the door and so he began announcing at every door, “Don’t worry! We come in peace!” like we were making first contact in an alien movie or something. I cringed every time he said it, though I couldn’t help but laugh too!
Add to all of this the fact that every single house that answered spoke Spanish and none of us do . . . well, let’s just say that our big lesson in giving didn’t go over quite as well as we had hoped!
So, I guess we will have to find another way to get across the fact that Christmas is not about the lights or the presents or the big fat guy in a red suit. Our perfect idea was a perfect flop. But as the saying goes, “if at first you don’t succeed, try, try again!” 🙂
Until then have a Happy Halloween! Oops! I mean Christmas! 😉