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Saturday, December 8, 2012

Santa Does Cosplay?

Cosplay = Costume Play

One of my favorite traditions that we're starting this year is to have a box full of wrapped Christmas books. Each day a different child gets to choose and unwrap a 'new' story for me to read to them just before dinner.

A few days ago, Lizzie unwrapped Arthur's Christmas. Remember Arthur the anteater from PBS?

This particular story involves Arthur trying to find a present for Santa. He goes from store to store and keeps seeing Santa in different locations and particularly notices Santa in various restaurants. He eventually gets the idea that Santa obviously LOVES to eat, so he makes a few different dishes which he has cooked himself (with dubious success) to leave out for Santa. The ending of the story has him finding a note left by 'Santa' thanking him for the food, and mentioning his awesome sister, D.W.

I had forgotten how this particular story went and so as I read it I wondered how the kids would handle the idea that there could be more than one Santa.

I'm not a huge fan of perpetuating the myth of Santa although I do love the ideas of St. Nicholas and giving and sharing.

However, my husband and teenagers love the magic of Christmas and the fun that kids can get out of it all.

It's a fine line we walk.

Anyway, back to the story. So, the kids had noticed that the Santas in the story all had slightly different outfits. They wanted to know why the clothes were different. Then when one in particular was quite skinny they wanted to know why.

At the end when 'Santa' leaves a note, Johnny's eyes were big as he asked if Santa had really left the note. We talked about how D.W had been really nice to help out Arthur. But, they weren't ready to give up the idea that Santa had really been in Arthur's house.

When they again brought up the fact that the Santas in the story had worn different clothes I decided to discuss it a bit. I asked the kids if Santa was real or a character from a story. A character from a story they all agreed. (I'm not sure they actually understood what those words meant though)
 Then, I asked, when Peter dressed up like Obi Wan, or Chola dressed up like Batman at Halloween, were they really those people or just wearing a costume? They laughed and agreed they were just dressing up.

So, I said, sometimes people like to dress up in costumes.

Johnny's eyes got huge. I was ready for the penny to drop, and truthfully not sure I wanted it to.

"So, Santa likes to dress up like Santa?!?"

Ummm, yeah......that's it. Story time's over!


Exactly Three Years Ago: A Christmas Card

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