I think my 7-year-old daughter might be humoring me when it comes to the whole Santa thing. Every day she desperately tries to search in my husband's side of the closet, when normally, she has no interest in his old uniform shirts and suits. I know she has to be looking for her Christmas presents. This year, to make the magic, I'm going to need to up the ante on old Father Christmas. I need to find new and creative ways to make my kids think Santa was here if she's going to believe just a few minutes more. I am really not ready for her to give up on Santa just yet.
Admittedly, much of the magical quality of Santa Claus and Christmas is that children are innocent and trusting, and they believe that human nature is good enough to allow something as wonderful as the myth of Santa to be real. It's before the world can dim that light. Before they learn that all those letters to Santa are all in the safe in the closet and not being read by mystical man in a colder clime. And in that period when children still believe, it's as magical for parents as it is for the kids. Everybody needs just a few more moments of magic and belief in the good of the universe, even if we have to make the magic ourselves.
1. Glitter Footprints
Footprints in flour and glitter strategically placed near the hearth or Christmas tree is an adorable, yet messy way to show that Santa showed up. Pro-tip: Best way to clean this us is to vacuum, and then use baby wipes. For some reason it really cleans that stuff up.
Also, make a paper stencil, don't use your own shoes. Kids will see the flour on them.
Did you know you can buy Santa's license and have it "casually" left behind? Oh yeah, it's a thing, and you can buy one at Santa's License for 7 bucks. And my husband is a cop, so he will definitely tell them it's a valid ID, and that Santa is going to have to roll up to the New York City Department of Motor Vehicles and get himself a new license.
3. Santa Spy Cam
This app uses augmented reality to have some elves and Santa show up at your house and captures them on a nanny cam on your phone. Show it to your littles the next morning with all the gravitas of a family that's just watched Netflix's Christmas Chronicles. Just, maybe keep them from jumping off the roof.
4. Leave The Cookie Crumbs With A Thank You
Leave your children a personalized thank you note for the cookies from Santa. Here's an important tidbit: Your kids know your handwriting. Have a friend write it, and you can write one for your friends' kids. "Dear Johnny, thank you for the delicious chocolate chip cookies. Next year, I'd appreciate some of your mom's fancy cookies from Colorado, if I could be so bold." Something like that. Or not, your choice.
5. Carrots In The Yard
Sprinkle the yard with the carrots you left for the reindeer, or leave some behind on the sidewalk. I know that at least in New York City, the sidewalks are the building's responsibility, and mine will leave the carrots if I ask them (and volunteer to clean them up).
6. Special Tags From Santa
These printable gift tags are the perfect finishing touch on the presents from Santa. Adorable, air-mail style and easy to modify.
Special tags from Santa are the cutest way to tie up a Christmas package and let everyone know that Santa did show up, and he wraps his own gifts, too.
7. Special Wrapping Paper
Make sure the wrapping you use for Santa is different than all the other wrapping you use, and ditch the evidence. Think glitter, ribbons, and a ton of fancy wrapping. (Even if you get that fancy wrapping at Marshalls on sale.)
8. Leave a Personalized Letter From Santa
You can craft something authentic and old fashioned-looking with parchment paper and a quill pen, or you can go the modern convenience route and print out a personalized letter from Santa with the help of the Santa letter generator at Big Huge Labs. The letter above is what I got using the "fill in the blanks" option (and the youngest Kardashian/West's info). Not bad!
After experiencing a traumatic c-section, this mother sought out a doula to support her through her second child’s delivery. Watch as that doula helps this mom reclaim the birth she felt robbed of with her first child, in Episode Three of Romper's Doula Diaries, Season Two, below. Visit Bustle Digital Group's YouTube page for more episodes, launching Mondays in December.