Well, another Christmas Eve is coming up shortly and Santa has to start getting ready. It is our busy time of the year and the elves are working hard putting together presents for all of the good children, and Santa knows you are all trying to be good.
Last year a little boy wrote Santa and asked me what I do when I get back to the North Pole on Christmas morning, after delivering all of the toys.
When Santa gets back home, he is tired, but not as tired as the reindeer who do all of the real work flying around the world. So, the first thing Santa does is to take care of the reindeer.
Reindeer are very smart and in the wild can find food all winter long even in the snow. They like to eat grasses, mosses, lichens, leaves and small tree branches. They get to them by scraping off the snow with their antlers and sharp hooves. In fact, the reindeer in North America, which are called caribou, get their name from the Native American word for shovel.
Of course, Santa’s flying reindeer are very special and Santa feeds them so they don’t have to dig for their food. But, they still like to poke at their food with their hooves. And, if they are outside and there is snow around to eat, they still prefer eating that over drinking the water Santa puts out for them.
After our trip around the world, Santa always has something special for the reindeer. They like oats, so I give them all an extra helping for all the work they have done. Santa also gives each one of them a hug and makes sure that they are cleaned up and warm before he goes into the house.
Mrs. Claus is always outside to greet me when I arrive at the house. She is funny and often says something like, “Where have you been all night?” or “ Out gallivanting around again?” Then she gives Santa a big hug and we go into the house to get warm. But, before she will let me into the living room, I have to change from my Santa suit into some warm pyjamas and a robe and slippers that she has set out for me.
She takes my suits an boots and brushes off the snow, soot and mud and puts them aside to clean later.
I have several suits to wear on Christmas Eve: the red Santa suit you all know, the green Father Christmas outfit that I wear in England, and my all white St. Nicholas outfit I wear in some northern countries.
Now, that one gets really dirty. Mrs. Claus once said I should have a black one as dirty as I get. She is silly.
Mrs. Claus always has a big fire going and some hot chocolate for me to drink. I love hot chocolate and she also has a few chocolate chip cookies to go with it. You know I love chocolate chip cookies, because so many of you leave them for Santa on Christmas Eve. I don’t eat all that you leave because I know Mrs. Claus will have some for me when I get home, but don’t stop leaving them. I sometimes sneak a few to the reindeer when I get back into my sleigh. They aren’t supposed to eat candy so I eat the chocolate chips out first. Yum!
The day after Christmas is when Mrs. Claus, the elves and Santa give each other presents and have a big dinner.
The elves always make something special for the reindeer like warm blankets or new hand decorated harnesses.
One year they made them all hats with their names on the side and and flashing red lights on top. They looked at them funny and I don’t think they ever wore them, although I was once told Vixen put hers on her nose and went around with the light flashing, telling all the rest of the reindeer she was Rudolph. Even Rudolph laughed.
One day after Christmas Mrs. Claus said to me, “This is the day all of the stores have their after Christmas sales, why can’t we go?” Then she laughed, so I said to her, “Well, this is also the day people take back the presents that they gave each other that didn’t fit, do you want to do that too?” She gave me one of those looks that made me think I shouldn’t have said that, then she smiled as she always does. I love Mrs. Claus.
Well, it is time for Santa to go check on the elves. They always seem to get into mischief when Santa is writing a letter to you and it has gotten way too quiet in Santa’s workshop. I know they are planning a trick on Santa, so I will sneak a peak through the window before I walk through the door.
Keep sending all those letters to Santa and, most of all, mind your manners, listen to your parents and teachers, be kind and, especially, take good care of each other.
Love, Your good friend, Santa Claus