The Gift Giving Season, a Personal Dilemma – Project Real Life (Week 4)

Trying to keep things simple over the holidays is getting more and more difficult as our son gets older. There are growing expectations around gift giving, and questions about the meaning of the holiday. “Who is Santa” has come up a number of times, and we struggle with our approach on the topic. Gifts, as much fun as they are to make or find, can quickly take over as the core of the season. An advent calendar full of chocolate? Sure, I planned on making one myself and having it full of simple toys, crafts and ornaments… but real life set it. I don’t have time to make something so extensive while also trying to crochet up gifts for the rest of the family when the house is quiet and all are asleep. Reality takes over and I buy the $2 advent calendar at the grocery store.

This whole parenthood thing is not easy. Once you get past the sleepless nights and settle in to cuteness overload, they find their voice and start asking questions! So many questions. This year we patiently tried to answer the 200+ daily questions spilling from our three year old, including “Now that you’re done having babies and don’t need your vagina, will you get a penis?”. But now he’s four and more serious questions are pouring out like “What’s cancer?”, and I hear him telling his sisters about how when they get old, they will die, but that they have a spirit which will hang around as a ghost. Life is getting real. And so we’re trying to be as honest with him as we can… so where DO we stand on telling stories about Santa? Can we really jump on board and suddenly spin a tale even though honesty has been at the core of our parenting strategy? Who knows. For now he’s confused about who Santa is, and was sure that the man in the mall was someone dressed up in a costume. I guess we’ll leave it at that and answer his questions as they come.

Here are a couple photos from this week including a self portrait I took while trying to avoid doing laundry.


 Documentary Family Photographer | Birth Photographer | Storytelling Photographer

Collingwood, Owen Sound, Thornbury, Clarksburg