yes, it was time for the answer, Virginia.
and i had to break the news to my dear little daughter that 'no, Santa Claus is not a real person. he's just a story'.
"REALLY? HE'S NOT REAL?" she gasped.
she was not upset, or hurt, just very shocked- it seemed like she could hardly believe that so much excitement and fun surrounded a person who is not real.
i followed up with saying that Christmas is really about Jesus- that he is who the story is really about.
she nodded...Jesus has been in her life since before she was born...so that seemed to be a given.
i told her the story of a man named Nicholas who was so kind and good that people began calling him a saint...how he gave to the poor...how he was our example for gift-giving and out of his story emerged the story of St. Nicholas, which then morphed somehow into Santa Claus.
"but Emma," i said, "we must remember that Jesus was the best example of all, because he gave himself."
again her little head nodded, and her black eyes sparkled.
Sorry, Virginia, i cannot tell a lie. There really is no Santa Claus...only the Lord who came as a baby and with joyous abandon gave his life away- for us.
It's really all about Jesus.
and that's the truth.