Sunday, December 23, 2012

The True Meaning of Christmas

So, here's the story.

Every year, the elementary school which each of my three childen have attended holds a PTA fundraiser called, "Breakfast with Santa." (Actually, the name has changed for political correctness reasons to "Winter Festival" or "Winter Breakfast" or something else much less catchy.) Like we had in most previous years, we attended. However, last year we had an extra motivation. My favorite photographer had volunteered to take the Santa pictures.

While The First Beautiful Daughter, The Favorite Son, and I prepared ourselves for our big moment with Jolly Ol' St. Nick, The Second Beautiful Daughter had a little trouble finding her holiday spirit. When it was our turn to sit with the man in red, Kathie Austin snapped a couple of pictures.

Because of my special access to Ms. Austin, I occasionally see some of her images before she shows them to the client and publishes. With our pictures, though, she was a little apprehensive for fear of my reaction. She had no reason for concern. In the spirit of Clark W. Griswold in National Lampoon's Christmas Vacation, when I saw our family photo, I just laughed.

Photo Credit: Kathie Austin Photography

At first, The Second Beautiful Daughter (seated, obviously, lower right) was embarassed about the picture. Soon, however, she changed her mind and joined in the fun. In fact, because The Second Beautiful Daughter knew I enjoyed this little family adventure so much and because the picture was, well, so damned funny, she had a print made and framed. She gave it to me as a Father's Day gift this past June. The framed photo now sits on a shelf next to our family room fireplace and reminds me of that Breakfast with Santa and not everything has to be perfect to enjoy our time together.

* * *
“Aren’t we forgetting the true meaning of Christmas? You know, the birth of Santa."
— Bart Simpson

While I know many readers of The Single Father's Guide Blog have other holiday traditions or, perhaps, none at all, my family's tradition is the celebration of Christmas. So, from my family to yours, Merry Christmas and best wishes for a healthy and prosperous 2013.