Christmas Past

Christmas past was a lot of fun years ago when we had large family gatherings, with young children. The festivities started Christmas eve with a large dinner and almost no presents under the Christmas tree. After dinner Santa Claus telephoned, instructing all of us to exit the big house and crowd into the adjacent small cabin. Santa had said “Do not return to the big house too soon or I will gone in a *flash* without leaving presents.”

With the children in the cabin, my sister and co-conspirator turned on the cabin interior light switch. A tape recorder played in the attic. The children heard Santa on the roof, talking with Rudolf. They discussed if the children had been bad or good. (Earlier, I had real intel from my sister.) The recording included sound effects of reindeer hoofs on a metal roof. With the recording over, the children were encouraged to gather by the window and watch for Santa Claus. From behind the cabin, in a really good Santa outfit, I slowly moved past the cabin window with a sack full of presents.

While the young children were distracted, my son quickly moved unobserved to place many presents under the tree in the big house.

Sister and co-conspirator Lynda encouraged the children to disobey Santa’s warning about waiting. The children, with big hopes of seeing Santa, moved slowly under cover of darkness, across the yard to the big house.

With a flash camera I waited and watched from an upstairs window. The setup was complete. As the children slowly moved across the yard, the camera flashed. Panic replaced stealth as the children ran to the house. Much to their relief, many presents were found under the tree.