Sunday, December 21, 2008

Why Santa needs her Beard!

When my kids were young we wanted to see their mouths open in speechless wonder, at the sight of a red clad fat man stuffing red pillow cases and stockings with goodies.

When Husband came home, always only after Santa had left, he was given breathless, wide eyed accounts. Son always claimed he saw reindeer flying outside the windows. Over-imaginative liars! They never noticed specks of white cotton on their Dad's cheeks.

The kids and I were alone one December. After they were asleep, I took out our crudely stitched but precious red and white cotton costume stored next to the red wedding lehenga. A friend and I had promised to be Santas for each others kids.

The disguise was crude. Bollywood style cushion for Santa's paunch, and cotton glued on the cheeks for beard. Who would step out looking like this?

The gifts including those for the maid's three daughters could be given the next day, but the friend was pacing the floor in the next building. And if one does not make eye contact, there is no nervousness. Santa stepped out of the flat and into the lift.

The lift man stared in astonishment. Santa looked straight ahead.

A late night dog walking friend halted in his walk, the dogs looked excited. Santa wanted to say, "You are smarter than your human!" but had to scurry away into the lift of the next building.

It was worth the dazed delight in two pairs of sleepy eyes. I was mighty proud. And since the maid had no idea, she was too shocked to react. Some hohoho, and hand the shiny packets to her little girls - and literally, gratefully escape into our flat.

Almost immediately while I was peeling off the beard, the door bell rang. "Memsaaabjeee, memsaabjee, woh Santajee!! ... hamare ghar Santajee aye!"
(Mr Santa came to our house!)
"Aap the?!" (It was you!?) I wish she'd given me some time to change :(

Today two harassed sounding friends organizing a Christmas Carnival called. Please, please, could Son please be their Santa? Son gave a look that said, "Don't even think about it." Daughter is away at a camp.

They had Gifts, Guests, Games, Music, Stalls, Circulars, Announcements and now at the last moment their Santa can't come. It was a real emergency. If I wasn't so sleepy when they called I know I would never have volunteered.


Ajit said...

hahahahaha :)
Good one... I still remember the my days in Kerala where a group of us used to roam about in the night singing christmas carols and collecting money :) (which was the ultimate objective) .........
and yes, Merry Christmas.....

Indian Home Maker said...

@ Hi Ajit, Merry Christmas :)
LOL @ your ultimate objective.
Carol singing sounds like such fun, I have enjoyed listening once, but never got a chance to join ...

Ritu said...

LOL, I hope you have a blast! The costumes are better now by the way

Anonymous said...

Ooooo, what fun! Tell me, how many people came over and hugged you? I am always amused to see folks hugging Santa or other characters like old friends. I'm sure half of them wouldn't do it when he/she's out of costume!

It was very sweet and sporting of you btw. Merry Christmas to all!

Indian Home Maker said...

@ Ritu They have no costume. Everything else was planned and quite nice. I just stuck cotton with fevicol to hide the face and gave away the gifts :)

Indian Home Maker said...

@Jottingsnmusings My son was horrified at the thought of my being Santa, but once he saw me dressed with beard and cushion in place, you should have seen his face.
There are many, many sentimental moments attached to that old costume.

Imp's Mom said...

lol! what fun:) and how sweet of u to volunteer as santa! imp attended her first xmas party yest, and boy was she thrilled... initially scared of the santa but as soon as she realised gifts were being given away, wanted every one of them... now everywhere she sees pics of santa, she sings jingle bells :)

ur son must have dropped his jaw wen he saw u dressed up?

Mampi said...

This was a great fun read.
Santa, like tooth fairy has to exist till he can.
Good luck to all of them.

Anonymous said...

You just gave me one more item to add to the: List of things I admire about IHM.
Can we get some pictures?
Our party got cancelled due to heavy snow :-(

Sahaja said...

Wow....I am smiling....thats such a sweet thing..even now I jump up if I see a santa in a shop or outside!

and i could sense a sort of "how nice it was then" feeling in the last 2 paras...was that intended?

Indian Home Maker said...

@ Jottingsnmusings ... nobody hugged me, but I shook hands with a lot of kids and hugged a lot of babies, and (horror of horrors)some people took pictures too! I should have realised they would, I have my kids baby pics with various Santas.

@Imp's Mom Reminds of the fun we had when my kids were young :) Kids love Santa! Give little Imp a Huge hug from this Santa!

@Mampi I agree Santa and tooth fairies must exist, I have preserved all the letters that were written to both, year after year ... I felt the kids had an idea they were not really real, but it was a great game,and they loved it.

@ Tears n dreams I saw some of the parents did take some pictures, but I didn't think of it, you know the moment my son saw me in the costume, he looked so ... He is going to be extra nice now for days because 'I was such a good mom' when they were young (Not anymore!)

@Sahaja Maybe, because the biggest joy it brought ... there is an ad that goes, "The look on his face - Priceless." It was worth the look on the Son's face. We had all forgotten what fun we had, the costume brought memories of those letters to Santa, those delayed gifts ... :)

Sue said...



You sucker. Post a pic na, bet you looked cute.

vimmuuu said...

Merry Xmas !!! and yeah like the others, whers the pic??? now, be a good Santa and send me gifts too !

Btw, how do you make the comments to appear in the same page? is it theme specific or you played around with the HTMLs?

Pixie said...

LOL! What a sweet post! :-)
And, yea, where are the Pics?!

Merry Christmas!

Indian Home Maker said...

@Sue I wish I has take some pics!!! Just didn't think of it ...! Merry Christmas to you :)

@pixie It was fun, but I didn't take any pics :(
Merry Christmas to you too :)

Indian Home Maker said...

@Vimmuuu LOL :) In the blogosphere the best gifts are our awards full of Bloggie love, one's coming your way, in the forthcoming award ceremony, specially from Santa IHM :)

To make comments appear on the same page,go to,
'Customise' => Settings => Comments => Comment Form Placement => Embedded below post => Done :)

karmickids said...

looks like you had fun!!!!

Anonymous said...

LOL! That sounded like a lot of fun. It also brought back a lot of memories. Thank you, IHM.


Quirky Indian

Mavin said...


That was great...Do you do that often..??

The lure of gifts from Santa is so irrestible that my daughters still refuse to grow up.

But when they were younger, the eagerness to see what was there, astonishment on their faces, squeals of delight and excited chatter made our days/weeks/months after that. Thank Santa for all that...

hitch writer said...

HO HO HO !! Merry Christmas....

Withering Willow said...

That's so sweet. I wonder how you would have looked with cotton glued on your face and a false paunch! :D

I just love this festival more than any other indian festival. But i never met got a chance to meet santa during my childhood days. :(

Anyways Merry Christmas! :)

Varun said...

A very sweet post IHM.

BTW here's an award for you :)

Gauri Gharpure said...

Woww!!! The adventures of the Indian Homemaker never fail to amaze me! this was such a sweet, joyful post. almost like a colourful christmas card, you know. I just loved the part abt 'memsaabji, santaji aaye the'' tht santaji was so hilarious, innocent and original.. here some people call him santa-da.. :)

Monika,Ansh said...

Aww.......I am sure u'll be a great Santa. I would not mind trying it out myself at some party just to see the looks in the kids' eyes.

Santaji, have fun!!

Balvinder Singh said...

Lovely post IHM. You know once i was made to act as Santa Clause at Bombay in our residential colony. I was standing on a high wooden plateform jumping and singing now and then to charm the kids who would walk up to me to shake hands and receive gifts from me, which had been purchased by the welfare association of the colony. My identity was kept a secret except for my family and some welfare association members. While the kids jostled with each other to come and meet me first, some young mothers lifted their kids and made them plant a kiss on my cheek or touch my beard or cap. Some of the mothers also kissed and touched me without knowing who i was. My family and friends pulled my leg later on for that. I wondered the love and respect that this imaginary figure commanded. What if it happened in real life too !!!

Indian Home Maker said...

@Karmickids Yes, and Merry Christmas :)

@Quirky Indian Yeah it was fun :)

@Mavin No, only these two times :)
Normally my husband became Santa, once another friend was persuaded... and as the kids grew older, and couldn't be trusted not to recognize Santa, we always made sure they were asleep when Santa left the gifts behind. But the costume has been used by many people.

@Hitchwriter Merry Christmas :)

@Withering Willow I looked horrible!!! The ladies who were escorting me back said they would just like to know who exactly this Santa was, and I realised I was reasonably unrecognizable. Thank God!!
PS What made you choose this name :)

@Varun Thank You!!! I am excitedly waiting for my chance to be Santa and pass awards too! Thanks, it feels really good that you thought of me when you were giving awards ... am going to grin all day now :))

@Gauri Gharpure Aw santa da is so sweet !! And I love your description, 'The Adventures of an Indian Home Maker' :))
Thanks, and Merry Christmas :)

@Monika,Ansh Try it, it is a lot of fun. The kids look so stunned, dazed, delighted ... their joy is unbelievable. Whoever came up with this idea truly loved kids.

Indian Home Maker said...

@Mr Balvinder Singh You have been Santa Claus too :)?!
I have done this lifting of an eleventh month old daughter to let her plant a kiss on Santa's cheek while her proud dad took a photograph :) The pictures are still there, taken year after year.

Which year was this? Did you land from the North Pole on a Fire Engine? One Santa I know did :) The kids loved it!

Smitha said...

Lovely Post IHM, My daughter is in that 'Oh Look Santa' phase now - so am sure you must have brought a lot of happiness to a lot of kids(and their parents:))

Merry Christmas!

Chirag said...

Merry Christmas! :)

Joe Pinto said...

My dear IHM,

More than a century ago, eight-year-old Virginia O'Hanlon wrote a letter to the editor of New York's Sun. The quick response was printed as an unsigned editorial on 21 September 21, 1897.

The work of veteran newsman Francis Pharcellus Church has since become history's most reprinted newspaper editorial, appearing in part or whole in dozens of languages in books, movies, and other editorials, and on posters and stamps.

This is the letter:

"DEAR EDITOR: I am 8 years old.
"Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus.
"Papa says, 'If you see it in THE SUN it's so.'
"Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?


This is the link:

Wishing you joy and peace.

Warm regards,
- Joe.

Rakesh Vanamali said...

Merry Christmas!

I laughed out real loud reading this post! I admire your sportive attitude which I'm sure has left the kids very happy!

Also....the comment "You are smarter than your human." Lol! ;)



Anonymous said...

haha... nice of u do do this.. !... hehe and the son never noticed the specks when uncle used dress up...but he could see the reindeers flying away ...:) hehe

Devil Incarnate said...

O my goodness........ i cant believe this...
wowwww u might hav had a gr8 time na... :)
Merry christmad

Another Kiran In NYC said...

Awwwwww but no pictures? This is a picure I would have loved to see.

That was such a cute post.

And a merry christmas to you too!

Mesoliloquy said...

Ha! Ha! this is hilarious yet at the same time so sweet.

Merry Christmas to you and your family!

Sumana said...

Oh wow IHM that is so nice of you. Definitely waiting for a santa here just kidding. You should have taken afew snaps to put them on here. LOL at the maid's comments.

Monika said...

lol!!! that was so cute... hope u had a great time on xmas

Usha Pisharody said...

:) That would have been a vision indeed!!!

Hope you had a great time :) And thanks for those wishes too!

Reflections said...

A lovely visualise the entire scenario:-)).