Thanks Santa for those two posts this week. I hope you get that beach house. I really do.
Folks one of the many reasons Santa needs to get away every so often is that reindeer, as loveable and as essential as they are, can be a bit of a pain to take care of.
Consider the things Santa has to keep in mind.
Reindeer eat mostly hay and reindeer food which is not readily available at the North Pole. Santa has to drive down into Canada to find the closest feed store.
Reindeer aren’t native to the North Pole. Santa has his favorite eight reindeer, and Rudolph of course, but he often has to go to Finland to recruit alternates just in case one of the others can’t fly on Christmas Eve.
In the off months, the reindeer train in a special facility Santa had built at the North Pole. And ever since that nasty incident with Rudolph the reindeer games have been open to all entrants.
And sure, Santa has a veterinarian on hand along with a certain set of elves to help in caring for the reindeer, and ultimately, he’s the one responsible.
Christmas and being Santa is so much more than toys, folks.
A lot of people, perhaps your parents, have a tendency to think that I only work one night a year. Nevermind that in that night I travel the globe delivering presents to millions of good boys and girls.
But when I return back to the North Pole just before midnight on December 25 I get in a good, long winter’s nap, and the next day it’s back to work.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ll take a day or two here and there to watch some football and even sneak in a beach visit or two.
But I’m always working on your behalf. Always developing new toys and games.
For years (centuries even) children have been leaving milk and cookies for Santa on Christmas Eve. Never mind that’s how he gets to the bowl full of jelly part.
The tradition goes way back to when Santa Claus was known as St. Nicholas. On St. Nicholas Day (Celebrated December 6, we’ll talk about that another time), children would leave out food and drink which would be exchanged for gifts overnight.
In other traditions, such as in Germany where the first Christmas trees were decorated with apples and cookies Santa would often snack on the tree decorations. When decorations became shiny balls and baubles, the tradition of the snacks remained.
Norse mythology had children leaving out hay and other treats for Sleipner, Odin’s eight legged horse.
During the Depressionin the United States parents wanted to teach their children to share, even though they themselves might be struggling, so they would encourage the children to leave snacks for Santa and the reindeer.
While Children around the world leave various treats for Santa, the cookies and milk seem to be the American version of a long-standing tradition.