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In 2019, our six-year-old boy started asking hard questions about Santa and we didn't have good answers. We wanted a way to keep Christmas as magical as possible for as long as possible and so we googled around and asked some friends. Surprised not to find an on-topic children's book, we wrote an idea down. It was better than we expected, and when we shared it on Facebook, our friends convinced us to submit it to be published even though we'd really just done it for our own kids.
We kept working on the poem, and when Anna started to paint pictures, we felt like the story really needed to be told. Luckily, the publisher agreed. A strangely cool part of the whole experience was getting the note that our book had been delivered to the Library of Congress.
By Anna and Gunnar Counselman
So, now you’ve heard
And think you know
The real secret of Santa
From a friend or a show,
A film or a book,
The Internet? Siri? Alexa?
Or, maybe you listened in line at the mall,
And you think you’ve finally assembled it all.
Regardless of where,
Your thinking is fair,
And you’re wondering, “What’s the deal?”
Can it be true?
Like, really true?
That the jolly old elf ain’t real?
The word on the street
Is that it’s parents that treat
You to all the stuff under the tree.
And, frankly speaking, you’ve wondered a bit
Just how the dude could possibly fit
Through chimneys and travel so incredibly quick,
Taking time between trips for little milk sips .
And you’re pretty sure what Einstein would say,
“Space-time doesn’t really work that way.”
And why does every Christmas show
Seem as if adults all know
That belief in Santa is just an act?
Can believing something hard enough really make it fact?
So, you might be thinking
Or getting an inkling
That it’s parents and stores and actors galore
Just trying to make kids smile some more.
To make them laugh
And give reasons to buy
New things for the cold winter season—
A reason for sweets and songs and treats
And lights and stockings and bows.
And if that’s the case, who could blame you for thinking
It’s not all bad to have a reason for drinking
Hot cocoa and cider, and even for eating
Pies - turkey - cranberries - Chex Mix.
And, oh my gosh, do I love Christmas!
But now, you might be feeling it’s gone.
Not totally gone, but never the same.
Will future Christmases all be lame?
Well, let me tell you, girls and boys,
Of Saint Nick’s true appeal.
Christmas is more than loads of toys—
It’s a magical magic; I promise it’s real.
I know this because it’s part of my job
To keep this secret each year.
To keep it buried deeper and deeper—
Shhhh, don’t tell,
I’m a Christmas Magic-Keeper.
And if you want in,
I’ll tell you the truth,
The whole truth—I promise no lies.
But before I share,
You have to show
You’ll never tell anyone
Who doesn’t already know.
This knowledge isn’t free.
It’s a big responsibility.
The cost is just this promise to me.
Sign here please,
And dot your i’s and cross your t’s:
A thousand years ago began
A wonderful, jolly, and loving man
Who actually did
Make presents for kids
And deliver them on Christmas day.
He started with a few—
Maybe one, or maybe two—
Of his neighbors who
Got his very,
Very first gifts.
Their smiles made him happy.
Their laughs made him gleeful.
So from that few, he grew and grew
Until he had more than he could handle .
Now, he probably had deer
And surely a sleigh,
And maybe even called
His reindeer by name,
Like Dasher and Dancer … and Betty and Rey?
We don’t really know,
For all that remains
Is his legend,
As this story explains
Where Santa is from
And how he became
This global sensation
And “Ho Ho Ho” Saint .
The elves I doubt
and always have
Elves just aren’t real.
But the magic of Santa is, I know
And it started one Christmas long ago.
There were too many children for one poor old saint.
Too much to get done in just one short day.
Try though he did,
Some wonderful kids
were left with nothing to play.
And they hadn’t been naughty
And didn’t deserve
Such a sad sad Christmas day.
And that’s when the first Christmas Magic came.
Parents arrived in droves
Saying, “Chris, you’re not alone!
We’ll cover our town
And turn frowns upside down.
You’re only one man,
You’ve done all that you can.
We’ll take it from here”
And they saw a tear
Form in the old man’s eye.
The snow was all sparkly
And the icicles glistened.
“We promise to share this
With grown-ups who will listen
And we’ll never tell
That it’s us wrapping gifts.
We’ll sign your name
And continue your quest.
Saint Nick, we love you.
You deserve a rest”
Then a young boy stepped forward,
hugged Santa, and said,
“My sisters believe,
And I’ll never spill,
Because I hope
They always will.
Thank you, Santa,
For all you’ve done,
For the wood horse, the toy soldier,
And all the fun.
I’ll bury this secret
Deeper and deeper.
I’ll be your very first
Then, an amazing thing happened. Year after year, the legend of Santa Claus grew and grew, and parents kept faith. As the little boys and girls came of age, they became Christmas Magic-Keepers, too. They never told their little brothers and sisters or their friends at school. And when they had children of their own, they passed along the magic.
You see, the magic of Christmas is one simple and powerful thing—love. That’s the magic. For the real Santa Claus so loved to see kids happy that he spent his life bringing them joy. And as long as that spirit of loving to see others happy survives, Santa can live forever through us. And it’s that part of Santa that parents tap into when they sign his name, drink his milk, take just one small bite of his cookies by the fireplace, and dutifully move the elf from shelf to shelf each night.
Every Christmas Eve, billions of children around the world go to bed dreaming that they’re on the nice list. And as they fall asleep, they can feel the magic. For that one, moment, the whole world is blanketed by Santa’s love.
Because for a thousand years, generation after generation have been Keeping Christmas Magic.
Now, it’s your turn.
The US Marine Corps runs an annual toy drive, and we're donating 1% of all revenues to help them make sure that every child has something special waiting for them on Christmas morning
We're on a mission to make an otherwise tough conversation into a beautiful moment instead! Drop us a line if you'd like to learn more