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 Fairmont1
Joined: 8/28/2007
Msg: 26
Believing in santaPage 2 of 4    (1, 2, 3, 4)
If a child holds a grudge and retains resentment because they were "lied" to about Santa then there are underlying problems or dynamics with the parents. Any reasonable person, when they find out "Santa isn't real" quickly realizes the reason for the "lie" and doesn't stay upset but basks in the fun of keeping the "myth" alive for the youngins. The whole thing is a win/win. The kids get to believe in a magical story and retain some innocence and the adults get to see the excitement created in the children and relive their youth.

This thread really is moot because Santa IS real!!!
 That is mommy2
Joined: 5/7/2007
Msg: 27
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History
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/5/2007 5:26:49 PM
I see no harm in Santa, tooth fairy, easter bunny, the boogie man, the man on the moon.
Face it, our world is brutual and harsh, why not allow the child to believe in things? it is called using ones imagination.

Adults who deny this loving adventure because of their own "PERSONAL ISSUES" should seek counselling to help them get over it.
 WindRoper
Joined: 7/24/2007
Msg: 28
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/6/2007 5:59:32 AM
Having voiced my feelings on the subject in a different thread as well as discussing it with some RL friends and coworkers, this following recently was shared with me. I saw it as a nice alternative so I thought I would pass it on. I hope some find it helpful.

In our family, we have a special way of transitioning the kids from receiving from Santa, to becoming a Santa. This way, the Santa construct is not a lie that gets discovered, but an unfolding series of good deeds and Christmas spirit.

When they are 6 or 7, whenever you see that dawning suspicion that Santa may not be a material being, that means the child is ready.

I take them out "for coffee" at the local wherever. We get a booth, order our drinks, and the following pronouncement is made:

“ You sure have grown an awful lot this year. Not only are you taller, but I can see that your heart has grown, too. [ Point out 2-3 examples of empathetic behavior, consideration of people's feelings, good deeds etc, the kid has done in the past year]. In fact, your heart has grown so much that I think you are ready to become a Santa Claus.

You probably have noticed that most of the Santas you see are people dressed up like him. Some of your friends might have even told you that there is no Santa. A lot of children think that, because they aren't ready to BE a Santa yet, but YOU ARE.

Tell me the best things about Santa. What does Santa get for all of his trouble?[lead the kid from "cookies" to the good feeling of having done something for someone else]. Well, now YOU are ready to do your first job as a Santa!"

Make sure you maintain the proper conspiratorial tone.

We then have the child choose someone they know--a neighbor, usually. The child's mission is to secretly, deviously, find out something that the person needs, and then provide it, wrap it, deliver it--and never reveal to the target where it came from. Being a Santa isn't about getting credit, you see. It's unselfish giving.

My oldest chose the "witch lady" on the corner. She really was horrible--had a fence around the house and would never let the kids go in and get a stray ball or frisbee. She'd yell at them to play quieter, etc--a real pill. He noticed when we drove to school that she came out every morning to get her paper in bare feet, so he decided she needed slippers. So then he had to go spy and decide how big her feet were. He hid in the bushes one Saturday, and decided she was a "medium." We went to Kmart and bought warm slippers. He wrapped them up, and tagged it "Merry Christmas from Santa." After dinner one evening, he slipped down to her house, and slid the package under her driveway gate. The next morning, we watched her waddle out to get the paper, pick up the present, and go inside. My son was all excited, and couldn't wait to see what would happen next. The next morning, as we drove off, there she was, out getting her paper--wearing the slippers. He was ecstatic. I had to remind him that NO ONE could ever know what he did, or he wouldn't be a Santa.

Over the years, he chose a good number of targets, always coming up with a unique present just for them. One year, he polished up his bike, put a new seat on it, and gave it to one of our friend's daughters. These people were and are very poor. We did ask the dad if it was ok. The look on her face, when she saw the bike on the patio with a big bow on it, was almost as good as the look on my son's face.

When it came time for Son #2 to join the ranks, my oldest came along, and helped with the induction speech. They are both excellent gifters, by the way, and never felt that they had been lied to--because they were let in on the Secret of Being a Santa
 cocytus
Joined: 11/9/2007
Msg: 29
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/6/2007 10:00:27 AM

Christmas is not what it used to be, when I was younger( many moons ago ).
Every child used to believe in santa, and I was no different.
But now , no-one seems to bother, my youngest who's 5 nows he's not real.
And I've tried my best to convince him that the myth is real, but are we kidding our selves.
Ay what age do you think kids should know the truth.


I'm sorry...exactly WHEN was Christmas better than it is now?
Santa is silly lie that parents shouldn't bother to tell children....
Why lie to your kids if you don't absolutely have to?
Isn't the point to have them be able to trust you always?
If people just explained the "Santa as an icon" story that an earlier poster spoke about to children in easy terms, at a young age...there'll be nothing for them to "find out"
 Jayderaven
Joined: 7/16/2007
Msg: 30
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History
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/6/2007 10:13:47 AM
Windroper - What a FABULOUS idea! I think I may have to borrow that idea myself... with what I am already doing, it is a perfect fit!
 mom23sillykids
Joined: 8/27/2007
Msg: 31
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/7/2007 6:18:39 AM
I think my 12 year old is on the fence of believing in Santa. Every year for the past few years I have been able to do something to keep her believing. This year I think that she may not fall for it. My other kids totaly believe in Santa. My 4 year old was crying last night because an older kid told him that poor Santa was dead. ( this kid likes to pick on my son) I ended up calling a friend of mine to pretend he was Santa to calm him down. Beleiving in Santa is a fun thing for kids. It still makes me happy to see thier faces light up when they see him or when they yell "Thank you Santa." Christmas morning.
 WindRoper
Joined: 7/24/2007
Msg: 32
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/7/2007 8:15:43 AM

Its nice to see that windroper has seen it from her first perspective about santa being a lie. i guess some leopards can change their spots.


I haven't changed my mind or spots. I still feel that if I perceive something as an untruth, then repeat it as a truth, I am lying. I just found the story someone shared with me to be a viable alternative for others who struggle with the issue so I passed it along. I think it is preferable to having a friend pretend to be Santa calling in order to placate a hysterical kid.
 cocytus
Joined: 11/9/2007
Msg: 33
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/7/2007 11:21:15 AM

its too bad about that,, yeah, tis too bad you actually believe that santa is a lie.
some ppl think that same thing about the holocaust (sp). but then, its easier to dismiss something you dont understand than it is to take the time and effort to investigate to see if your actually correct in your assessment of the situation. this is how stereotypes and prejudices prevail.

try googling this "the history of santa claus"
many european countries have stories of "santa claus" depending upon the country and language he is refered to as "father christmas" . "Santa" was an actual person who the legend is based upon. these men would travel the countryside and give presents to small children. He was usually accompanied by a "helper" (this would be where we get the "elf" reference) . Since this always happened in corolation to the winter solstice (which is where the christian belief takes its reference to the birth of christ) these men traveled by sleighs or wagons drawn by pack animals. (in the norse countries it was a reindeer) YES THEY ACTUALLY EXIST! In many of the smaller villages even today in europe, there are pairs who travel from home to home keeping the tradion alive.

As a child grows older they come to recognize that its the "traditions" of santa which are most important, not weather or not its an actual singular person. In a nurturing environment, a little fantasy is not harmful. In an environment where you have a develping child and the parents arent nurturing , supportive or comforting, then a bit of fantasy is confusing, and can become harmful.


It's too bad you tried to make your point using the HOLOCAUST (a REAL and tragic event) to support your belief it's OK to lie to children.
Santa,as we know him/it,is a creation of 20th century media...
Had somebody not gone back into the past and pulled an obscure saint out to sell goods...it's likely that people wouldn't have to continue a dated tradition of lying to their kids about the source of their gifts...
Trying Googling that...
The world is hard...the sooner kids realize that..the sooner they are able to deal with it....
No wonder there are two pages of shrinks in my towns phonebook...
 cocytus
Joined: 11/9/2007
Msg: 34
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/7/2007 10:15:17 PM

f you had any notion as to how many ppl are contending that the holocaust was propaganda only and based in no fact, it would, i suspect, curl your hair.
if you just bothered,............................ which apparently you are incapable of doing.
perhaps its you who percieve the tradition of santa as some madison avenue hype, and cant see the soul feeding traditions of charity, and community, etc that the legend represents. those aspects of charity, and giving, and community, and the other endearing qualities are what ppl mean when they say,, SANTA IS VERY REAL.
THOSE QUALITIES ARE VERY REAL TO ME, AND MILLIONS OF OTHER PPL, using santa is merely a catalyst to make the point available to children while feeding their sence of wonder of the world.
if i was as jaded as you sound i would hope that i would pick a name from one of those two pages in the phone book of yours and make a call.

perhaps those two pages of psychologists exist because of jaded disgruntled ppl who would prefer to blame anyone else for their sour grapes than take responsibility for themselves.
as far as windroper said,, ok,,I feel sorry for you,, i spoke too soon, hoping against hope, , then again, i was giving you the benefit of the doubt. I still say is fairly pathetic to call santa a lie and by default calling ppl who say that, liars.


Umm..are you seriously debating that the Holocaust took place?
Let's forget all the survivors and all the evidence of eyewitnesses in this country and others that SAW the death camps....
The Germans (as they usually are) were extremely efficient at documenting their own brutality in this matter.
Google that as well...
Anybody who argues there was no Holocaust is either misinformed or an idiot,,,or some combination of the two...
And...for the record...if you tell somebody a lie...you're a liar...
If you don't like being called a liar....don't lie
 cocytus
Joined: 11/9/2007
Msg: 35
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/8/2007 8:25:50 AM

of course i'm not debating that it happend,, jeeze,,, comprehend what you read. and since you haven't done that, go back and read the reference. duh
I USED IT TO MAKE A POINT,, ONE YOU OBVIOUS MISSED.
GODS, I HATE THE PPL WHO ARE REMEDIAL BY CHOICE.

let me help you out a bit on that,, i said--->
"yeah, tis too bad you actually believe that santa is a lie.
some ppl think that same thing about the holocaust"( i.e. they think its a lie)
you would need no more than a third grade lesson in grammer to get the reference to "lie". but in the absence of that>>> notice where in the sentence its said "you believe that santa is a lie" which is followed by, " some ppl think that same thing about the holocaust". when all one would have to do would be to do a minor bit of research to find its not a lie. ( again a reference back to the original point, which is "lie")

santa claus is a concept! a present day concept based in a legend based on actual ppl... NOW DO YOU GET IT? good lord,,
then you lot go about cryin and whinin that your parents lied to you and boohoo what an awful life you have because you're too thick to grasp a simple concept of humanitarianism.


Since it was your idiotic Holocaust mentioning that caused me to write..don't think you that "duh" is yours?
If you use the word "grammar" ...at least SPELL it correctly.
If you want to waste valuable w/ your kids telling foolish falsehoods...by all means..their your kids...
Santa Claus is a needless lie...
Telling that lie makes you do and say things to cover a lie that you DON'T HAVE TO TELL IN THE FIRST PLACE...
I'm well aware of both concepts...and legends...
Your overly loose usage of the terms makes me wonder if YOU are....
I await.... w/ baited breath ....your next imbecilic posting
 cherie70
Joined: 12/16/2006
Msg: 36
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/8/2007 9:30:26 AM
Aaaah thats sooo sad! Ive 2 kids 12 and 9 and both of mine still believe in St Nick...why cas if they didnt theyd get coal in their stocking (i aint jokin) lol...maybe its because I still believe in Christmas and the magic etc...off course my 12 yr old has said dont be daft theres no such thing, then I remind her about the coal and that I wouldnt be saying that she changes her mind quick enough lol...funny story the other day me and my kids were out shopping and my 12 yr old asked about santa in a whisper if he could get her this (whatever it was, some music cd) and I raised my voice repeating her request lol. she got all embarrassed....very funny.... but yeah I think it all boils down to how you come across regarding christmas and santa...Im hoping itl last a long time for them good luck...
 brandy_n_3
Joined: 8/27/2006
Msg: 37
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History
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/8/2007 11:05:16 AM
we still believe, my oldest is 9 and still believes. I still get presents from my parents labelled "from Santa" under the tree. I love windropers idea for then they are starting to no longer believe .
 nocalsingledad
Joined: 11/27/2007
Msg: 38
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History
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/8/2007 12:26:26 PM
My 9yo daughter knows there isn't a real santa but it was a teacher at school who told the whole class that last year in a section on "cultural myths". That kind of pissed me off, but she has been pretty good keeping it from her little brother who still believes.

It is part of the joy of being a child ... and part of the joy of getting older when you discover that your parents did all of that just to see that smile on your face and not for any credit for themselves at the time.

I think about 9 is a good age to learn the real deal. But I don't want to tell them.
 That is mommy2
Joined: 5/7/2007
Msg: 39
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History
Believing in santa - HISTORY LESSON!
Posted: 12/8/2007 4:29:46 PM
Christmas - An Ancient Holiday

The middle of winter has long been a time of celebration around the world. Centuries before the arrival of the man called Jesus, early Europeans celebrated light and birth in the darkest days of winter. Many peoples rejoiced during the winter solstice, when the worst of the winter was behind them and they could look forward to longer days and extended hours of sunlight.

Real StoryIn Scandinavia, the Norse celebrated Yule from December 21, the winter solstice, through January. In recognition of the return of the sun, fathers and sons would bring home large logs, which they would set on fire. The people would feast until the log burned out, which could take as many as 12 days. The Norse believed that each spark from the fire represented a new pig or calf that would be born during the coming year.

The end of December was a perfect time for celebration in most areas of Europe. At that time of year, most cattle were slaughtered so they would not have to be fed during the winter. For many, it was the only time of year when they had a supply of fresh meat. In addition, most wine and beer made during the year was finally fermented and ready for drinking.

In Germany, people honored the pagan god Oden during the mid-winter holiday. Germans were terrified of Oden, as they believed he made nocturnal flights through the sky to observe his people, and then decide who would prosper or perish. Because of his presence, many people chose to stay inside.


World Traditions

Christmas as we know it today is a Victorian invention of the 1860s. Probably the most celebrated holiday in the world, our modern Christmas is a product of hundreds of years of both secular and religious traditions from around the globe. Click around this map to learn about traditions from different regions and, along the way, learn about the history of this most cherished of holidays.


Sweden
'God Jul!'
Most people in Scandinavian countries honor St. Lucia (also known as St. Lucy) each year on December 13. The celebration of St. Lucia Day began in Sweden, but had spread to Denmark and Finland by the mid-19th century.

In these countries, the holiday is considered the beginning of the Christmas season and, as such, is sometimes referred to as "little Yule." Traditionally, the oldest daughter in each family rises early and wakes each of her family members, dressed in a long, white gown with a red sash, and wearing a crown made of twigs with nine lighted candles. For the day, she is called "Lussi" or "Lussibruden (Lucy bride)." The family then eats breakfast in a room lighted with candles.

Any shooting or fishing done on St. Lucia Day was done by torchlight, and people brightly illuminated their homes. At night, men, women, and children would carry torches in a parade. The night would end when everyone threw their torches onto a large pile of straw, creating a huge bonfire. In Finland today, one girl is chosen to serve as the national Lucia and she is honored in a parade in which she is surrounded by torchbearers.

Light is a main theme of St. Lucia Day, as her name, which is derived from the Latin word lux, means light. Her feast day is celebrated near the shortest day of the year, when the sun's light again begins to strengthen. Lucia lived in Syracuse during the fourth century when persecution of Christians was common. Unfortunately, most of her story has been lost over the years. According to one common legend, Lucia lost her eyes while being tortured by a Diocletian for her Christian beliefs. Others say she may have plucked her own eyes out to protest the poor treatment of Christians. Lucia is the patron saint of the blind.

Finland
'Hyvää Joulua!'
Many Finns visit the sauna on Christmas Eve. Families gather and listen to the national "Peace of Christmas" radio broadcast. It is customary to visit the gravesites of departed family members.

Norway
'Gledelig Jul!'
Norway is the birthplace of the Yule log. The ancient Norse used the Yule log in their celebration of the return of the sun at winter solstice. "Yule" came from the Norse word hweol, meaning wheel. The Norse believed that the sun was a great wheel of fire that rolled towards and then away from the earth. Ever wonder why the family fireplace is such a central part of the typical Christmas scene? This tradition dates back to the Norse Yule log. It is probably also responsible for the popularity of log-shaped cheese, cakes, and desserts during the holidays.

Jamestown, Virginia
According to reports by Captain John Smith, the first eggnog made in the United States was consumed in his 1607 Jamestown settlement. Nog comes from the word grog, which refers to any drink made with rum.

Germany
'Froehliche Weihnachten!'
Decorating evergreen trees had always been a part of the German winter solstice tradition. The first "Christmas trees" explicitly decorated and named after the Christian holiday, appeared in Strasbourg, in Alsace in the beginning of the 17th century. After 1750, Christmas trees began showing up in other parts of Germany, and even more so after 1771, when Johann Wolfgang von Goethe visited Strasbourg and promptly included a Christmas tree is his novel, The Suffering of Young Werther. In the 1820s, the first German immigrants decorated Christmas trees in Pennsylvania. After Germany's Prince Albert married Queen Victoria, he introduced the Christmas tree tradition to England. In 1848, the first American newspaper carried a picture of a Christmas tree and the custom spread to nearly every home in just a few years.

Mexico
'Feliz Navidad!'
In 1828, the American minister to Mexico, Joel R. Poinsett, brought a red-and-green plant from Mexico to America. As its coloring seemed perfect for the new holiday, the plants, which were called poinsettias after Poinsett, began appearing in greenhouses as early as 1830. In 1870, New York stores began to sell them at Christmas. By 1900, they were a universal symbol of the holiday.

In Mexico, paper mache sculptures called pinatas are filled with candy and coins and hung from the ceiling. Children then take turns hitting the pinata until it breaks, sending a shower of treats to the floor. Children race to gather as much of of the loot as they can.

England
'Merry Christmas!'
An Englishman named John Calcott Horsley helped to popularize the tradition of sending Christmas greeting cards when he began producing small cards featuring festive scenes and a pre-written holiday greeting in the late 1830s. Newly efficient post offices in England and the United States made the cards nearly overnight sensations. At about the same time, similar cards were being made by R.H. Pease, the first American card maker, in Albany, New York, and Louis Prang, a German who immigrated to America in 1850.

Celtic and Teutonic peoples had long considered mistletoe to have magic powers. It was said to have the ability to heal wounds and increase fertility. Celts hung mistletoe in their homes in order to bring themselves good luck and ward off evil spirits. During holidays in the Victorian era, the English would hang sprigs of mistletoe from ceilings and in doorways. If someone was found standing under the mistletoe, they would be kissed by someone else in the room, behavior not usually demonstrated in Victorian society.

Plum pudding is an English dish dating back to the Middle Ages. Suet, flour, sugar, raisins, nuts, and spices are tied loosely in cloth and boiled until the ingredients are "plum," meaning they have enlarged enough to fill the cloth. It is then unwrapped, sliced like cake, and topped with cream.

Caroling also began in England. Wandering musicians would travel from town to town visiting castles and homes of the rich. In return for their performance, the musicians hoped to receive a hot meal or money.

In the United States and England, children hang stockings on their bedpost or near a fireplace on Christmas Eve, hoping that it will be filled with treats while they sleep. In Scandinavia, similar-minded children leave their shoes on the hearth. This tradition can be traced to legends about Saint Nicholas. One legend tells of three poor sisters who could not marry because they had no money for a dowry. To save them from being sold by their father, St. Nick left each of the three sisters gifts of gold coins. One went down the chimney and landed in a pair of shoes that had been left on the hearth. Another went into a window and into a pair of stockings left hanging by the fire to dry.

France
'Joyeux Noël!'
In France, Christmas is called Noel. This comes from the French phrase les bonnes nouvelles," which means "the good news" and refers to the gospel.

In southern France, some people burn a log in their homes from Christmas Eve until New Year's Day. This stems from an ancient tradition in which farmers would use part of the log to ensure good luck for the next year's harvest.

Italy
'Buone Natale!'
Italians call Chrismas Il Natale, meaning "the birthday."

Australia
In Australia, the holiday comes in the middle of summer and it's not unusual for some parts of Australia to hit 100 degrees Farenheit on Christmas day.

During the warm and sunny Australian Christmas season, beach time and outdoor barbecues are common. Traditional Christmas day celebrations include family gatherings, exchanging gifts and either a hot meal with ham, turkey, pork or seafood or barbeques.

Ukraine
'Srozhdestvom Kristovym!'
Ukrainians prepare a traditional twelve-course meal. A family's youngest child watches through the window for the evening star to appear, a signal that the feast can begin.

Canada
Most Canadian Christmas traditions are very similar to those practiced in the United States. In the far north of the country, the Eskimos celebrate a winter festival called sinck tuck, which features parties with dancing and the exchanging of gifts.

Greece
'Kala Christouyenna!'
In Greece, many people believe in kallikantzeri, goblins that appear to cause mischief during the 12 days of Christmas. Gifts are usually exchanged on January 1, St. Basil's Day.

Central America
A manger scene is the primary decoration in most southern European, Central American, and South American nations. St. Francis of Assisi created the first living nativity in 1224 to help explain the birth of Jesus to his followers.
 That is mommy2
Joined: 5/7/2007
Msg: 40
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History
santa - HISTORY LESSON!
Posted: 12/8/2007 4:30:50 PM
The Legend of St. Nicholas and Santa Claus

St. Nicholas
Corbis-Bettman

The legend of Santa Claus can be traced back hundreds of years to a monk named St. Nicholas. It is believed that Nicholas was born sometime around 280 A.D. in Patara, near Myra in modern-day Turkey. Much admired for his piety and kindness, St. Nicholas became the subject of many legends. It is said that he gave away all of his inherited wealth and traveled the countryside helping the poor and sick. One of the best known of the St. Nicholas stories is that he saved three poor sisters from being sold into slavery or prostitution by their father by providing them with a dowry so that they could be married. Over the course of many years, Nicholas's popularity spread and he became known as the protector of children and sailors. His feast day is celebrated on the anniversary of his death, December 6. This was traditionally considered a lucky day to make large purchases or to get married. By the Renaissance, St. Nicholas was the most popular saint in Europe. Even after the Protestant Reformation, when the veneration of saints began to be discouraged, St. Nicholas maintained a positive reputation, especially in Holland.
 That is mommy2
Joined: 5/7/2007
Msg: 41
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History
CHRISTMAS TREE - HISTORY LESSON!
Posted: 12/8/2007 4:31:59 PM
Christmas Trees: How It All Got Started

Christmas Illustration

Long before the advent of Christianity, plants and trees that remained green all year had a special meaning for people in the winter. Just as people today decorate their homes during the festive season with pine, spruce, and fir trees, ancient peoples hung evergreen boughs over their doors and windows. In many countries it was believed that evergreens would keep away witches, ghosts, evil spirits, and illness.

In the Northern hemisphere, the shortest day and longest night of the year falls on December 21 or December 22 and is called the winter solstice. Many ancient people believed that the sun was a god and that winter came every year because the sun god had become sick and weak. They celebrated the solstice because it meant that at last the sun god would begin to get well. Evergreen boughs reminded them of all the green plants that would grow again when the sun god was strong and summer would return.

The ancient Egyptians worshipped a god called Ra, who had the head of a hawk and wore the sun as a blazing disk in his crown. At the solstice, when Ra began to recover from the illness, the Egyptians filled their homes with green palm rushes which symbolized for them the triumph of life over death.

Early Romans marked the solstice with a feast called the Saturnalia in honor of Saturn, the god of agriculture. The Romans knew that the solstice meant that soon farms and orchards would be green and fruitful. To mark the occasion, they decorated their homes and temples with evergreen boughs.In Northern Europe the mysterious Druids, the priests of the ancient Celts, also decorated their temples with evergreen boughs as a symbol of everlasting life. The fierce Vikings in Scandinavia thought that evergreens were the special plant of the sun god, Balder.
Christmas Illustration

Germany is credited with starting the Christmas tree tradition as we now know it in the 16th century when devout Christians brought decorated trees into their homes. Some built Christmas pyramids of wood and decorated them with evergreens and candles if wood was scarce. It is a widely held belief that Martin Luther, the 16th-century Protestant reformer, first added lighted candles to a tree. Walking toward his home one winter evening, composing a sermon, he was awed by the brilliance of stars twinkling amidst evergreens. To recapture the scene for his family, he erected a tree in the main room and wired its branches with lighted candles.

Most 19th-century Americans found Christmas trees an oddity. The first record of one being on display was in the 1830s by the German settlers of Pennsylvania, although trees had been a tradition in many German homes much earlier. The Pennsylvania German settlements had community trees as early as 1747. But, as late as the 1840s Christmas trees were seen as pagan symbols and not accepted by most Americans.

It is not surprising that, like many other festive Christmas customs, the tree was adopted so late in America. To the New England Puritans, Christmas was sacred. The pilgrims's second governor, William Bradford, wrote that he tried hard to stamp out "pagan mockery" of the observance, penalizing any frivolity. The influential Oliver Cromwell preached against "the heathen traditions" of Christmas carols, decorated trees, and any joyful expression that desecrated "that sacred event." In 1659, the General Court of Massachusetts enacted a law making any observance of December 25 (other than a church service) a penal offense; people were fined for hanging decorations. That stern solemnity continued until the 19th century, when the influx of German and Irish immigrants undermined the Puritan legacy.
Christmas Illustration

In 1846, the popular royals, Queen Victoria and her German Prince, Albert, were sketched in the Illustrated London News standing with their children around a Christmas tree. Unlike the previous royal family, Victoria was very popular with her subjects, and what was done at court immediately became fashionable—not only in Britain, but with fashion-conscious East Coast American Society. The Christmas tree had arrived.

By the 1890s Christmas ornaments were arriving from Germany and Christmas tree popularity was on the rise around the U.S. It was noted that Europeans used small trees about four feet in height, while Americans liked their Christmas trees to reach from floor to ceiling.

The early 20th century saw Americans decorating their trees mainly with homemade ornaments, while the German-American sect continued to use apples, nuts, and marzipan cookies. Popcorn joined in after being dyed bright colors and interlaced with berries and nuts. Electricity brought about Christmas lights, making it possible for Christmas trees to glow for days on end. With this, Christmas trees began to appear in town squares across the country and having a Christmas tree in the home became an American tradition.
 That is mommy2
Joined: 5/7/2007
Msg: 42
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History
CHRISTMAS TREE - HISTORY LESSON!
Posted: 12/8/2007 4:34:53 PM
Sorry to the nay sayers but read the information provided they the HISTORY CHANNEL!

Santa's legend was long ago........ not a modern thing........ same with the whole notion of christmas!
 Despotic-Panda
Joined: 11/23/2007
Msg: 43
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/8/2007 5:27:31 PM
i do not know what i particualy want to write other than how touched i have been tonight by some of your storys and how i feel that childhood is roobed far too soon nowadays. This post has reminded me of a young age i cant remember precisley but after spending christmas eve at an aunts house on the journey i home i fel asleep in the car as usal which i loved as a child but close to arriving home i remember waking to the sound of jingle bells in the sky and that made the best christmas memory for me even though i still have no explaination to this day.

all i can say is happy christmas to everyone and i hope santa visits
 cocytus
Joined: 11/9/2007
Msg: 44
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/9/2007 8:08:04 PM

dude, you seriously arent tryin to make me responsible for your inability to grasp a simple reference are you?? lol,,, but since you are, just how much more of your antics am i responsible for? ROTFLMAO
as far as your spelling lesson, while "ar" is the typical spelling, "er" is as well, acceptable.
bottom line is,, when a poster starts rippin at spelling, he/she is admitting they have nothing left of value to offer.


Might want to get your money back for that English degree,genius.
G-R-A-M-M-A-R Never seen or heard of it spelled any other way
You're reference was idiotic...it goes well w/ your argument...
I'm sorry I can't argue w/ stupid people...
They bring me down to their level...and they beat me w/ all of their experience...
And you seem to be VERY experienced.....
 KASL
Joined: 5/17/2007
Msg: 45
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Believing in santa
Posted: 12/18/2007 10:06:16 AM
Oh Dear,
Yes, Virginia, there IS a Santa Claus. It's when YOU STOP being Santa yourself, that he is not real.
When you donate toys to children in need, when you send teacher/mail carrier/maid etc. gifts in to show your appreciation, when you secretely put treats in their stockings or toys under the tree, you ARE Santa. You carry on the tradition that the real live human St. Nicholas started.
My sister and I beleived through 4th grade until we found "evidence" - Santa's wrapping paper in their closet.
I remember when I first "played santa" as a teen, my parents were thrilled.
My child (8) STILL beleives in Santa - although I think they are beginning to understand, that maybe it's her parents. but I think she is afraid of upsetting ME, saying he's not real. She was writing a letter to Santa the other night, concerned about not getting her first toy choice. We've already talked about "playing Santa" and helping santa out by giving toys to children in need. There will come a time and we will talk then.
 rockondon
Joined: 2/21/2007
Msg: 46
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Believing in santa
Posted: 12/18/2007 2:53:31 PM
personally I wouldn't assign a certain age to determine when kids should know the truth. I would rather base it on their maturity and when they start asking questions and essentially start figuring it out for themself. I allow my 6yr old to believe in santa, but if she starts asking me hard questions I don't plan on lying to her.

When my mom told my sister that santa wasn't real, my sister's reply was...
"I HATE YOU. YOU'RE A LIAR, MOM! I HATE YOU FOR LYING TO ME!!..etc"
Hopefully that doesn't happen with my lil girl.
 Cinders!
Joined: 12/1/2007
Msg: 47
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/18/2007 6:23:24 PM
I agree the christmas spirit has gone some what, I can't even believe it is almost christmas as it doesn't feel like such.

But yes kids are starting to stop believing in it at a much younger age. My daughter who is 7 came home from school and told me that a couple of her friends said santa isn't real but also told me that they are wrong because she knows he is. It's not really the children's fault because many of them have older siblings which can move the process along as well, so these children stop believing and go to school and spread the word. Also not as many parents get really into the spirit and the sneaking around and what not to keep it a secret and keep santa real.

I do a good job, because my brother lives real close to me so what I do is keep all of the gifts purchased at his home until christmas even and when the kids are sound asleep he brings them to me. This works because the kids have access to my room and we live in an apartment so nowhere else I can hide them so to them the gifts could only have gotten there one way!!!

Im lucky they still believe and still ask to put a carrott out and milk and cookies and a note and such. I love christmas not about the gifts but the meaning and about the joy for my children, i dont think it would be the same if the surprise and belief in santa was gone.
 cocytus
Joined: 11/9/2007
Msg: 48
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/19/2007 3:50:26 AM
FYI...Since Christmas was co-opted by the early Christian church from the Roman holiday Saturnalia (Jesus was either born in the fall or following spring) and since all of its traditions are borrowed from pagan festivals (Yule log,wreaths,even the red clothes worn by you know who,etc) I guess it's not that bad that people need to tell falsehoods on what is largely a made up celebration anyway.

Season's greetings.
 Lee4love
Joined: 9/24/2006
Msg: 49
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Believing in santa
Posted: 12/20/2007 6:00:28 PM
I told my kids early on. Santa is a myth. How many people who live in apartments have fat guys come dow the chimney? Here's a guy of maybe 350 to 400 pounds squeezing down a chimney made for a lady who is all of a size 2?
Come on people--!!

Look at the real confusion too. Santa and then there is a Rabbit with eggs??? we need to change all of that and very soon
 claire2282
Joined: 12/27/2006
Msg: 50
Believing in santa
Posted: 12/26/2007 7:27:18 PM
Santa is real in our house. This year he left footprints and cookie crumbs to prove it!!!

Let the children have their fun. The look of amazement on my daughters face when she saw those prints was PRICELESS and she'll remember it forever. Kids grow up way too fast these days!
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