Christmas Magic

By

Christmas Magic
Christmas Magic

I am one member of a family of magicians. They don’t pull rabbits out of hats, perform card tricks, or make people disappear. What they can do is even more breathtaking. My family is capable of creating Christmas magic that can leave the average person amazed and bewildered well into adulthood.

One Christmas Eve, when my mother was a young girl, she was officially up past her bedtime. After being told by her mother to go to bed, she and her sister continued to sit on the sofa and color. There was a knock at the door, the two girls ran to answer it, and, to their surprise, a man in a red suit stared back at them from the doorway. They slammed the door, ran to tell their mother what happened and quickly jumped in bed while vowing to never again stay up late on Christmas Eve.

To this day, my mother still wonders who was wearing the red suit that infamous Christmas Eve. After ruling out her father (who was making deliveries on the big rig), her grandfather (who was away on a wrecker call), and numerous family friends (who swear they had not been to her house that night), the only logical explanation is that it was, indeed, Santa Claus.

That’s right. My mother, now 55-years-old, still believes in Santa. And frankly, so do I. Once you have experienced the magic, you have no choice except to believe.

When I was a child, it was an annual tradition to go see Santa at the Miller and Rhoads department store in Richmond. He was the real Santa; my mom said all the others were simply helpers. He was so beautiful with his perfect white beard, shiny black boots and cheerful, booming voice. “Ho Ho Ho!” he said. “Merry Christmas, Melissa!” I couldn’t believe he remembered my name. Every year I stood in line with my mom and my sister, planned what I was going to ask for, told Santa’s elf who I was and where I was from, and then, it was our turn. He called us by name, ushered us onto his lap, and then he asked us how things were in Wakefield! He knew the name of my town! Every year he blew me away. It was magical.

But few things could compare to the anticipation felt on Christmas Eve night. I used to worry that if I didn’t fall asleep fast enough, Santa would know and would not come to my house. Then, I would lie motionless in my bed, listening for sounds of reindeer hooves on the roof and wondering if Santa would be able to get inside our house since we did not have a chimney.

Even though we lacked a chimney, Christmas morning was never anything short of magical. There were half-eaten cookies left on the kitchen table, nibbled carrots scattered in the yard, and, of course, presents. There were so many presents that they could not fit under the tree; Santa had to put the overflow in chairs. On Christmas morning, our living room was transformed into FAO Schwarz. There were gifts from my list, toys I didn’t even know that I wanted, and then there were the items I so desperately desired but had told no one about. How did Santa know? Magic. Pure magic.

Throughout recent years, I have watched the magic trickle down to the younger generations. I listen intently to the stories of Santa sightings on the back porch, reindeer hoof prints in the front yard and sleigh tracks up the driveway. I love to hear that Santa ate all of the homemade cookies but didn’t finish his milk, and I love to see the ashy footprints Santa made walking from the chimney to the Christmas tree. I love the magic, every single bit of it.

Last year, I greeted the holidays with full gusto. It was my first Christmas in my new home, the first time I had ever had a fireplace, and I had a Christmas tree for the first time in four years. I sent Christmas cards, baked homemade cookies, bought gifts for everyone in my family (including my dog) and surprised my parents with stockings. I spent a lot of time reflecting on childhood memories and special Christmases and my heart became filled with more joy than I could handle. I realized that the magic was still there; it just came it different forms.

There was magic in helping my 72-year-old grandmother wrap her Christmas gifts so she wouldn’t have to do it all herself. There was magic in watching my handicapped aunt open her presents on Christmas day – ten one dollar bills and three pairs of underwear. Just what she wanted and she couldn’t have been happier. And there was magic in spending irreplaceable time with my husband, parents and other family members on the one special day when no one has other plans.

I am so glad that I have been able to appreciate the magic in my past and realize the magic of the present. And, with childlike anticipation, I look forward to my future. I can’t wait to have my own children and make their Christmas dreams come true. I want to help them find Rudolph’s nose in the nighttime sky, write letters to the North Pole, bake cookies for Santa and decorate their first tree. I want to be on the other side of the wand. I crave the magic.

About this writer

  • Christmas Magic

    I am one member of a family of magicians. They don’t pull rabbits out of hats, perform card tricks, or make people disappear. What they can do is even more breathtaking. My family is capable of creating Christmas magic that can leave the average person amazed and bewildered well into adulthood.

    One Christmas Eve, when my mother was a young girl, she was officially up past her bedtime. After being told by her mother to go to bed, she and her sister continued to sit on the sofa and color. There was a knock at the door, the two girls ran to answer it, and, to their surprise, a man in a red suit stared back at them from the doorway. They slammed the door, ran to tell their mother what happened and quickly jumped in bed while vowing to never again stay up late on Christmas Eve.

    To this day, my mother still wonders who was wearing the red suit that infamous Christmas Eve. After ruling out her father (who was making deliveries on the big rig), her grandfather (who was away on a wrecker call), and numerous family friends (who swear they had not been to her house that night), the only logical explanation is that it was, indeed, Santa Claus.

    That’s right. My mother, now 55-years-old, still believes in Santa. And frankly, so do I. Once you have experienced the magic, you have no choice except to believe.

    When I was a child, it was an annual tradition to go see Santa at the Miller and Rhoads department store in Richmond. He was the real Santa; my mom said all the others were simply helpers. He was so beautiful with his perfect white beard, shiny black boots and cheerful, booming voice. “Ho Ho Ho!” he said. “Merry Christmas, Melissa!” I couldn’t believe he remembered my name. Every year I stood in line with my mom and my sister, planned what I was going to ask for, told Santa’s elf who I was and where I was from, and then, it was our turn. He called us by name, ushered us onto his lap, and then he asked us how things were in Wakefield! He knew the name of my town! Every year he blew me away. It was magical.

    But few things could compare to the anticipation felt on Christmas Eve night. I used to worry that if I didn’t fall asleep fast enough, Santa would know and would not come to my house. Then, I would lie motionless in my bed, listening for sounds of reindeer hooves on the roof and wondering if Santa would be able to get inside our house since we did not have a chimney.

    Even though we lacked a chimney, Christmas morning was never anything short of magical. There were half-eaten cookies left on the kitchen table, nibbled carrots scattered in the yard, and, of course, presents. There were so many presents that they could not fit under the tree; Santa had to put the overflow in chairs. On Christmas morning, our living room was transformed into FAO Schwarz. There were gifts from my list, toys I didn’t even know that I wanted, and then there were the items I so desperately desired but had told no one about. How did Santa know? Magic. Pure magic.

    Throughout recent years, I have watched the magic trickle down to the younger generations. I listen intently to the stories of Santa sightings on the back porch, reindeer hoof prints in the front yard and sleigh tracks up the driveway. I love to hear that Santa ate all of the homemade cookies but didn’t finish his milk, and I love to see the ashy footprints Santa made walking from the chimney to the Christmas tree. I love the magic, every single bit of it.

    Last year, I greeted the holidays with full gusto. It was my first Christmas in my new home, the first time I had ever had a fireplace, and I had a Christmas tree for the first time in four years. I sent Christmas cards, baked homemade cookies, bought gifts for everyone in my family (including my dog) and surprised my parents with stockings. I spent a lot of time reflecting on childhood memories and special Christmases and my heart became filled with more joy than I could handle. I realized that the magic was still there; it just came it different forms.

    There was magic in helping my 72-year-old grandmother wrap her Christmas gifts so she wouldn’t have to do it all herself. There was magic in watching my handicapped aunt open her presents on Christmas day – ten one dollar bills and three pairs of underwear. Just what she wanted and she couldn’t have been happier. And there was magic in spending irreplaceable time with my husband, parents and other family members on the one special day when no one has other plans.

    I am so glad that I have been able to appreciate the magic in my past and realize the magic of the present. And, with childlike anticipation, I look forward to my future. I can’t wait to have my own children and make their Christmas dreams come true. I want to help them find Rudolph’s nose in the nighttime sky, write letters to the North Pole, bake cookies for Santa and decorate their first tree. I want to be on the other side of the wand. I crave the magic.

You can skip to the end and leave a response. Pinging is currently not allowed.

2 Responses to “Christmas Magic”

  1. Mary Stymes says:

    Melissa, I love your writing. I looked back at your articles in some of the previous issues and was very moved. I wanted to find your chicken soup but didn’t see it in the bookstore – where to look?

    Please keep writing.

    Mary – Florida

  2. David and Kim Face says:

    Always enjoy reading your articles. Now you have competition with your mother.

Leave your mark with style

Comment in style

Stand out from the crowd and add some flare beside your comment.
Get your free Gravatar today!

Make it personal

avatar versus gravatar Close