“HE sees you when you’re sleeping, HE knows when you’re awake…HE knows if you’ve been bad or good…”
Oh, how I loved Santa when I was a little girl. He was my hero. Many a Christmas Eve was spent gazing out the window, hoping to catch a glimpse of he and his reindeer as they arrived in our small community. Sometimes I actually believed that I saw his sleigh in the distance. I remember one Christmas Eve when I was in bed, supposedly sleeping, that I rose quietly and peeked through a crack in my door. All I saw was a red suit moving about the living room. I just couldn't help myself. I threw open the door and there stood my mom and dad in front of a decorated Christmas tree. After getting scolded, I climbed back into my bed, but even what I saw that night didn't take the magic away for several years. Even as children we block out that which we don't want in our lives and continue to believe in the wonders of our childhood myths for as long as we can.
One of the most beautiful myths of Christmas is the story of Santa Claus. Children the world over send him letters and eagerly await his arrival on Christmas Eve. But, just who is this jolly fat man 'with a little round belly, that shook when he laughed, like a bowlful of jelly'.
Legend has it that the real Father Christmas is the pagan god, Odin, who rode across the sky on his eight-legged flying steed, Sleipnir, bringing presents at the time of the festival of Yule, a celebration of the Winter Solstice.
Others claim he is none other than Saint Nicholas of Myra, patron saint of sailors, a fourth- century bishop who is best known for being a patron of children and most often called Santa Claus. According to legend, he used the great wealth he inherited to help the poor and rewarded good children by putting presents in their shoes while they slept. St.Nicholas, just as Odin, was believed by children in many countries to ride a magical horse to deliver his gifts.
Over the years, the legends began to merge, as the folklore of Paganism was absorbed into Christian legend. After all, they were travelers of the road, both were known for their beards, and both rode horses which were said to 'fly through the air'. And, as time went on, Sleipnir, with his eight legs, multiplied into a team of reindeer.
As you can see, Santa Claus, along with the Angels, rules my home at Christmas. The following two pictures are of a Santa collection began twenty years ago. Sadly, several were shattered beyond repair during my move. The first year hubby and I were together, I discovered several of these little Santa dolls in the store and bought several of them. The next year and the year after that, I bought several more. Then, the store closed. These Santa Claus dolls are replicas of the way Santa has been pictured throughout the ages and around the world.