During the month of March, I have been participating in the Slice of Life Challenge, hosted by Stacey Shubitz and Ruth Ayres at twowritingteachers.wordpress.com. I've been trying to do more creative writing and this post is part of a series about presents that I am working on, inspired by The Twelve Kinds of Ice by Ellen Bryan Obed. My father had a serious accident eleven years ago and I have been trying to figure out a way to write about it ever since. I'm trying to through this serious of memoirs about the gifts he has given me and my family members throughout our lives.
The How Did They Do That Present?
Santa was an important character in our house and since I was the oldest, I'd imagine that there was more pressure on my parents to keep me believing. Once I stopped believing, then my parents would have a harder time keeping my younger brothers believing…In conversations that I have had with my parents as a parent, I have learned that my dad was the brains behind the Santa Secret. He worked hard and put in long hours, but he must have saved some energy for thinking up Christmas surprises and the one that I am sharing here was one of the best. To this day, my dad giggles when I remind him of my pink rug.
We moved a fair amount during my believing years, which is helpful to me now, as I try to remember important events and how old I was. Because we were still at 39 Musket Trail, I was younger than 10, probably 8. I don’t think that at this point, I had any doubts about Santa's existence. He was a pretty special guy.
We took good care of Santa in our house. Left him cookies, fresh milk (my brother worried that the milk would be warm, so my parents were under orders to put the cup out only when they were really coming up to bed, as late as possible, so it would be cold), carrots for the reindeer, definitely no fire or hot embers in the fireplace.
I went to sleep in my four-poster bed with my bedside rug next to me. I had picked up my room since that we part of the nice not naughty deal, but my idea of cleaning my room always involved stuffing almost everything in sight under my bed, so I always had a lot under my bed and I’m sure that Christmas Eve was no different.
That Christmas morning, I woke up early. We always woke up really early in our house and the rule was that we stayed in our rooms until Mom and Dad let us know we could come down. Then, we would all go downstairs together. I picked up my Little House book from my night table (I don’t remember which one, but I read all of them many times). Something was different in my room. Whoa. Really different.
I looked down at the floor. Blinked. Looked down again. A pink shag carpet stretched from wall to wall across my entire bedroom. I got out of bed and walked on it, leaving footprints. My under-my-bed stash was exactly how I had left it, only it was on top of the pink carpet.
All I could think was that I loved my carpet and that Santa was magical! For the next couple of years, even my friends had an extended lease on the Santa-is-real-and-alive-in-the-North-Pole conviction, based on the fact that no one else could have lifted up a bed while a kid slept right through it. Wall to wall carpet on Christmas Eve was quite a trick.
Enjoy your gifts,
Enjoy your gifts,