Santa Claus never came to our house the same way twice when I was a kid. The only sure thing was that he would visit on Christmas Eve. One year I woke up from a nap in the afternoon to discover he'd come a little early. Another year I was worried we'd miss him because we went out for dinner. Not finding anyone home, he left all the gifts on our front porch for us to find when we got back. Once, I had finished my job of drying the dishes after dinner and when I went to put the damp towel out in the service porch to dry, I found all of my presents out there. It was Mother's practice to let me open one gift from family early. My sister married when I was four or five and began her own family traditions, but they came to visit a day or two before Christmas one year. Pat and my mother decided we should open perhaps just one gift to each other while we were all together. My father just sort of went along with the program, whatever that might be. One gift led to another, and pretty soon the living room was filled with wrapping paper and laughter. To my astonishment, Santa had apparently discovered our early celebration and left toys and goodies in our garage right then and there! I went to school the next day and felt pretty darned special because I was the only kid Santa had visited early, and I had the bike to prove it.
There came a time when Mother explained that there were a lot of new children in the world and Santa had to have a cut-off date for bringing toys for older kids. The deal was this...he would continue to visit every year, but his gifts would be the spirit of kindness and giving and it would be my job to share these...the Spirit of Christmas.
I believe in Santa Claus.