When I was a kid, I believed in Santa 100%, despite the fact that some mean kids would try to tell me he wasn't real and my parents gave me the presents. I would imagine I believed in Santa until I was around 15. (This willing suspension of disbelief would also lead to my love of pro wrestling, which I believed was real until I was about 18).
So great was my love of Santa, that I even accepted as Gospel the fact that Santa would come early on December 21 or 22 just to deliver my family's presents because I would be gone for Christmas. You see, ever year the Maven family hit the road around December 21 or 22 and took a two-week car trip to some part of the country. Looking back, I cannot imagine the Hell that my parents endured during these adventures. I do recall some vomiting and car sickness and peeing into coffee containers and laying on the floor of the car. I recall my dad's car defroster not working one winter and us getting stopped by the police because he could barely see through the windshield. "You see officer, we are headed south and the sun will burn off the frost soon." Don't know why the guy let us continue. We had like 3% visibility in that car.
And I remember the 500 mile drives and the sharing a milk at McDonald's and the efforts at eating a 400 degree McDonald's fried apple or cherry pie. The roof of your mouth was ruined for 3 days.
But the trips were always to colleges and to historical sites and to places that everyone should see. These trips are why I love America and American history so much.
But anyway, another thing that it taught me was that Christmas season isn't necessarily about being home and eating and sitting by a tree. It is about being with your family and doing things that are family traditions, whatever they may be.
So Merry Christmas to my loyal readers. I hope that Christmas finds you with the ones you love, keeping or making traditions that you will have all of your life.