...is the process by which we create, discover, learn and grow with those we cherish most.



Tired of looking at xmas lights, we decided to head North and visit Willow Bend, where a larger than life snow globe stands on display with fake snow blowing overhead.

Polar Express4

Polar Express

This year the attraction showcased characters from the movie, The Polar Express.

We've watched this movie several dozen times already (unfortunately it has some questionable dialogue) but still, it's entertaining and fun to watch - AND there's a train in this movie - and if there's one thing Noah has loved from day 1 - it's trains.

Polar Express5

Polar Express2

The Polar Express is a story about skeptical children who journey to the North Pole, get lost, witness tiny elves wrapping gifts for those on the "good list", and cheer for a Santa kickoff to fly around the world and deliver a toy for every child - and only through this myriad of adventures, do they come to believe in "Christmas." And how will you know if you're a believer? According to this movie, if you can hear Santa's sleigh bell ringing- then you are.

While this is a highly entertaining movie - there's a lot to draw from and put into perspective for the kids, especially now as they are absorbing insurmountable information from everywhere. Scary scenes (like the ghost on top of the train) initiate more questions - and this is when we reiterate how cartoons are make-believe. Pretend. Not real - Contradicting the movies' main point of - believing in what you can't see.

Polar Express is just one of many cartoons that portray Christmas to be a time to get gifts ("My favorite part of Christmas is gifts for me" - Ming Ming from The Wonder Pets), after all, Santa knows exactly what you want (Diego gets his telescope) and "naughty" kids don't get anything (Swiper on Dora the Explorer). So in other words - there's an incentive for being good. I have a hard time swallowing that - shouldn't kids strive to be good for no other reason than for themselves and the greater good?

So if we don't place gifts under the tree for them Christmas morning - will they think they are bad? Or what if we get them something they didn't want - because they secretly wished it from Santa?

While I love to live in a world with my children where we can make believe about anything - some things just jump the hurdle. This is one of them. So in the car, when Ava brought up Santa, I explained that he's just pretend like in their cartoons. BUT that it was based on a true story from a long time ago when an old man named St. Nicholas made gifts for children who didn't have any.

Ava seemed content with that answer - so I left it alone.

Polar Express3

And will let the magic of Christmas be what they believe from their hearts...


  1. We try to celebrate Santa, but it is rather difficult when you celebrate Christmas hundreds of miles away from home and there is precious real estate in the car as it is.

    Being Catholic, we do, however, celebrate 3 Kings Day, or the Epiphany, when the magi brought gifts to Jesus. We exchange our gifts, just one each, and close the Christmas holidays with that. It was a tradition that I picked up 10 years ago, not one I grew up with. It really reinforces that Christmas is about the quality time and not the quantity of gifts (or stressing out about them, even though I'm guilty of that!).

  2. Thanks Mrs. Bianca! I echo and love how you carry family traditions even if they didn't begin as a child for you. Remembering the religious aspect of it is so humbling - no matter what religion you are.

    I too am guilty of wanting to buy gifts for the kids - they just come out with darn too cute stuff this time of year. But I have to turn this leaf and make it a habit. Lots of my blogger friends have already done so - creating beautiful handmade stuff for their loved ones. It just takes so much time. Maybe I start now and create something new each month for someone? Now there's a thought...

    At least what I bought the kids complement their playrooms (shopping cart for "grocery store" play... and magnetic cars to count and pick up with using magnets (manipulative play). It's the jewelry and lip gloss that Ava is into right now that has me swooning - I can't believe she's at that age already!

    Thanks so much for sharing!

  3. I really enjoyed your blog today. The pictures were great and I am amazed at how you both are handling the seasonal and religious questions. When my kids were little, their best friends were Jewish and their mom was so confused about what to do they went to Miami every Christmas. Coward's way out!

    The older I get, the more I have come to believe there is no "right" religion. There are good people of all religions and each has the same tenents - respect others, respect yourself and do the best you can. No one chooses to be born a particular religion - you are usually what your relatives are.


Thanks for sharing - I will respond to your comment here as well so check back! xo


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...