My mum asked me the other day if my eldest son still believes in the magic of Christmas or had anyone ruined it for him yet?
Josh turned seven in the summer, but happily up until this point I’ve had to put little thought into at what age kids either stop believing or are told by their friends in the school playground that some childhood heroes may actually not exist. Of course at some point Josh will discover that Father Christmas isn’t real, but I have no intention of dropping that particular bombshell yet.
At Easter I tried telling Josh that the Easter bunny was made up and it rocked his little world. His reaction actually broke my heart! The reason I’d broached the subject was because my youngest Ben, who’s four, was terrified at the idea of a giant bunny coming into his house – quite rightly so if you ask me! But I ended up having to back track, claiming what I’d said was only a joke.
I also remember a friend of mine who has older children once telling me that her eldest son – after hearing chatter amongst his schoolmates – challenged her one day about Santa Claus. He kept saying: ‘I know he isn’t real’, and was relentless in his questioning, so in the end she agreed but told him not to ruin it for his siblings. She then had to watch him as he sobbed saying his Christmas was ruined!
It is a hard subject this as in theory we’re lying to our little ones with these myths, but the festive season truly is a magical time of year and ‘Mr C’ is all part of that – so I’m quite happy for Josh to go on believing.
In a wider way my children’s own special brand of magic has completely inspired the Miss Shelly range. My first gingerbread man decoration was made for Josh to celebrate his first Christmas, and I’ve since created a range of baby’s first Christmas gifts which I probably wouldn’t have thought of without him.
As Josh has grown up a lot of interests have also influenced my work – such as the dinosaur Christmas decorations that came about from his ‘dino mad’ stage and the Ninjabread men that were dreamed up because he had an obsession with Ninja Turtles.
I even made a Ninja Turtle pumpkin that year and created some DIY baubles that I could make with him. (I’ve attached an image at the bottom of this blog so you can see how to make them if your child is turtle crazy at the moment!) And I’ve blogged before about how the design for my penguin decoration this year came about because of Ben’s fascination with the black and white birds.
Children are Christmas and trying to see this important holiday through their innocent eyes and imagination I find hugely inspiring. When I think of Christmas I feel as if I’m reliving all the excitement I had as a child through them and it certainly didn’t harm me having a little white lie told to me every now and then.
Except of course where the Easter bunny is concerned – I’m with Ben on that one!