As the holiday season rolls into December, all sorts of traditions come to light, whether based on religion or not. I love the holiday time … all the decorations and lights give me an extra spring in my step and joy in my heart. I celebrate Christmas, am a believer in the spirit of Santa Claus and the magic of the season. And as such, I grew up with a variety of Christmas traditions. We didn’t decorate the house until after December 4th (because it was my brother’s birthday), and the tree didn’t go up until the weekend before Christmas because we left it up until twelfth night (Epiphany, aka January 6th) and my mom worried about it getting too dry and bursting into flame (we always had a live tree, which was then planted in the back yard or used for fire wood), plus there would be too many fallen pine needles to clean up afterward. My favorite decoration to play with was the old nativity set purchased with blue chip stamps, but since it didn’t come with a crèche, my mom made one out of a graham cracker box, salt flour, and old pine needles. To my child eyes, that box was JUST like the stable Mary and Joseph sought refuge in. And my second favorite decoration to play with were the set of Elves my mom had purchased (probably before I was born) at a thrift store. We had a couple wearing red, one wearing green, and one in candy cane red and white. Those elves acted out more stories than I can count. So when Elf on a Shelf became popular, I grinned because I had been doing that for years, but without the photographic evidence.
Remember when I said we might be in trouble because Sergio is able to wear newborn size clothes? Well, it looks as if I’ll be doing a slight variation of the Christmas game called Sloth of a Shelf starring none other than Sergio.
The elf costume no sooner arrived than Sergio insisted on putting it on and sitting on the shelf. He said he could sit there until Christmas, no problem. I reminded him that Halloween hadn’t yet happened and he might want to wear some other costume and besides, even he might get tired of sitting still for that long.
So now I may be in even bigger trouble because Sergio has been reading up on the Elf on a Shelf phenomenon and has some ideas of what we can do. He’s now on a hunt for reindeer that can fly and directions to the North Pole. I recently caught him holding his breath and looking cross-eyed at his nose. When I asked him what he was doing, between pants, he told me trying to turn his nose red so he can lead Santa’s sleigh.
It’s going to be a wild December folks — I hope I can keep up.