Christmas is many things, but there’s one aspect of it that you don’t hear much about in the consumerism-obsessed, slick advert-soaked world of the media.
I’m sure though that it’s one that most parents will be aware of: that extra little weapon it adds to our armoury in aiding our little darlings in their eternal battle between Good and Naughty:
“Father Christmas is watching!”
“You’d better watch out, you’d better think twice, he’s gonna find out who’s naughty or nice: Santa Claus is coming to town”
Harsh but useful!
Is there ever a more effective deterrent to Naughtiness than the threat of removal of presents? Not here!
Painting on the walls? “That’s 1 less present for Ellie in Santa’s sack!”
Stealing your sister’s toy? “Jake: Father Christmas is watching!”
It’s amazing the effect this can have!
In the run-up to Christmas we had quite a contrast here: Ellie often seemed hell-bent on being as naughty as she could, whereas Jake was on a mission to be good.
Even after being naughty he’d announce that he was trying to be as good as he can, all the time!
I do wonder if it was just that he’s a bit more savvy & socially aware: he hasn’t been quite so well-behaved in 2014…
As for Ellie: all I can say is that her sack from Santa must have had a huge number of presents to start with, given the number of times we had to threaten their removal!
So Ellie was misbehaving somehow or other; I can’t remember exactly how. We did the usual “Santa’s watching: I think that’s another present he’s taken out of your sack”.
Up steps Jake, seeming very concerned at his sister’s plight:
“Ellie, you can have my presents if you lose any by being naughty, because I love you”, then gives her a big hug.
He really was on a mission to be Good. And I do think it was genuine.
We may slipped in an extra gift or 2 in his sack from Santa…
And Ellie got exactly the same number of presents she would have anyway: just don’t tell her that, OK? At least not for a few years…
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