There are reindeer in my house.
Years ago, my children – like all children, I imagine – would look for hidden presents before Christmas. It was never very easy to hide gifts. I believe that when a child found a gift with his or her name on it, that child would shake the gift or maybe even peek under the wrapping paper in hopes of finding out what might be in the box. The "evidence" led me to believe there had been what one might call "tampering."
So, I simply quit hiding the gifts. Instead, I put the names of various reindeer on packages. (As daughter Mandy pointed out, this was not an original idea; a long-ago neighbor did the same.) Each year, it became a game to figure out which reindeer was which person. Usually, each child was two reindeer.
This has become one of our family traditions. It just wouldn’t seem right to have gifts with the real names instead of reindeer names.
Now, the children are grown – ranging from 26 to 33 – and the family has grown to include a son-in-law and a grandchild.
They’re all living in other states, but their gifts are ready with reindeer names, awaiting their arrival home for Christmas.
Since there are more people, I’ve added Frosty and a few other names, although I haven’t yet had to use Scrooge or the Grinch, thank goodness.