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Santa Clause: A Christmas Tradition

Updated on September 13, 2014

The Tradition of Santa Through a Child's Eyes

When my kids ask me about Santa Clause, I tell them what I have learned over the years...Santa is a wonderful man who makes Christmas time amazing for all kids based on how good they've been all year. I teach my children the tradition of Santa passed down from generations....what most Americans know elderly man who lives with his wife (Mrs. Clause), wears a velvet red suit, displays a white fluffy beard, and has a large workshop where he has elves that make presents for all the girls and boys for Christmas day.

Yes, I know that it's basically a lie, but the joy of knowing that my children believe in something larger than themselves (besides God...and yes, they do believe in God) is an amazing gift I can give them until they are too old to have faith in the jolly Christmas being.

Even though I'm an adult and no longer believe in a large man dressed up in a red suit with a big white beard, I'll always have the jolly guy close in my heart. Santa Clause taught me how to love Christmas and cherish the bond of family and friends. He taught me that giving should be effortless, selfless, and the most important reason for the holidays (except for the birth of Jesus).

I hope you enjoy this lens that is decided to Santa Clause and all the joy he can bring to children and adults. Holiday traditions are an amazing thing and sharing traditions can bring people closer. My hope is that you all share your traditions and joy with others this holiday season.

Photo Credit

Santa Clause Coloring Pages for Kids

Your kids will enjoy coloring these adorable pictures of Santa Clause. Encourage them to give their Christmas creations away as gifts or place near the cookies and milk for Santa on Christmas Eve. You and your child can even color these cute Santa Clauses together. Click on each Santa image to be taken to a printable coloring page.

The American Tradition of Santa Clause

Orginally, Santa Clause came from the Dutch version called Sint Nikolaas or Sinterklaas. The Dutch settlers in New Amsterdam (New York) brought this fun and unique tradition (some even say cult) to America. Instantly, Santa Clause became a household name as a man dressed in a red velvet jacket and pants with white wool trim. He lived in the North Pole with his wife, Mrs. Clause, and numerous elves who worked all year round to create toys for girls and boys that Santa would deliver every Christmas Eve night. Within a few years, when an explanation of how Santa Clause got around town was needed, Rudolph and his 8 reindeer crew were born.

The first written evidence of Santa and his reindeer came from Clement C. Moore in 1823 in a poem called "A Visit From St. Nicholas". It included the first real picture of Santa Clause, illustrated by Thomas Nast. See the picture above.

Santa Clause Around the World

Each country has it's own traditions on who Santa Clause is. Here are names other countries have for the big jolly man.


Here, they call him Shengdan Laoren


In this country, his name is Father Christmas


Here, the big guy is called Pere Noel


In this country, they refer to him as Christindl, the Christ Child

Spain and Latin America:

Here, people believe that el Niño Jesus (the infant Jesus) brings gifts

Brazil and Peru:

These countries believe in Papai Noel


Here, He is known as Black Peter


In this country, he is called Joulupukki


Here, he is referred to as Kerstman


In this country, he is called Babbo Natale for Father Christmas

Want More Info on the History of Santa Clause?

Santa Clause is a wonderful Christmas tradition all over the world. For more information on the history of Saint Nicholas and Christmas, please visit...

History Channel: Santa Clause

You'll find videos, stories, external links and more.

Thomas Kinkade Santa Clause Ornaments

The Tradition of Christmas Trees


#1 - The first use of the Christmas tree dates back to the 1500's.

#2 - Some claim the tree originated in Germany in the mid 1500's, others claim it was Latvia in the early 1500's, and a few even believe in a legend that St. Boniface created the Christmas tree in the 7th century.

#3 - The Christmas tree has been condemned as a pagan symbol, renamed a "holiday tree", and removed from public spaces due to political correctness, and blasted by environmentalists.

#4 - In 1851, Mark Carr opened the first Christmas tree retail lot in New York, and from that time onward the use of Christmas trees as family tradition for the holiday took off.

#5 - The first use of a Christmas tree in America was an artificial one made of evergreen branches attached to wooden pyramids in 1747.

What kind of Christmas tree do you use for the holidays?

See results

Twas the Night Before Christmas

My favorite Santa story to recite to my children on Christmas Eve

Twas the night before Christmas, when all through the house

Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.

The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,

In hopes that St Nicholas soon would be there.

The children were nestled all snug in their beds,

While visions of sugar-plums danced in their heads.

And mamma in her 'kerchief, and I in my cap,

Had just settled our brains for a long winter's nap.

When out on the lawn there arose such a clatter,

I sprang from the bed to see what was the matter.

Away to the window I flew like a flash,

Tore open the shutters and threw up the sash.

The moon on the breast of the new-fallen snow

Gave the lustre of mid-day to objects below.

When, what to my wondering eyes should appear,

But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny reindeer.

With a little old driver, so lively and quick,

I knew in a moment it must be St Nick.

More rapid than eagles his coursers they came,

And he whistled, and shouted, and called them by name!

"Now Dasher! now, Dancer! now, Prancer and Vixen!

On, Comet! On, Cupid! on, on Donner and Blitzen!

To the top of the porch! to the top of the wall!

Now dash away! Dash away! Dash away all!"

As dry leaves that before the wild hurricane fly,

When they meet with an obstacle, mount to the sky.

So up to the house-top the coursers they flew,

With the sleigh full of Toys, and St Nicholas too.

And then, in a twinkling, I heard on the roof

The prancing and pawing of each little hoof.

As I drew in my head, and was turning around,

Down the chimney St Nicholas came with a bound.

He was dressed all in fur, from his head to his foot,

And his clothes were all tarnished with ashes and soot.

A bundle of Toys he had flung on his back,

And he looked like a peddler, just opening his pack.

His eyes-how they twinkled! his dimples how merry!

His cheeks were like roses, his nose like a cherry!

His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow,

And the beard of his chin was as white as the snow.

The stump of a pipe he held tight in his teeth,

And the smoke it encircled his head like a wreath.

He had a broad face and a little round belly,

That shook when he laughed, like a bowlful of jelly!

He was chubby and plump, a right jolly old elf,

And I laughed when I saw him, in spite of myself!

A wink of his eye and a twist of his head,

Soon gave me to know I had nothing to dread.

He spoke not a word, but went straight to his work,

And filled all the stockings, then turned with a jerk.

And laying his finger aside of his nose,

And giving a nod, up the chimney he rose!

He sprang to his sleigh, to his team gave a whistle,

And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.

But I heard him exclaim, 'ere he drove out of sight,

"Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night!"

Santa Clause: A Heartwarming Christmas Tradition

Click thumbnail to view full-size

Santa Clause Suits for "Playing" Santa

Santa Bags for Carrying Christmas Presents

Our Family Santa Clause Tradition

Every Christmas Eve, our family has a Santa Clause Tradition that was passed down from my parents to me. It's a wonderful tradition that always got me so excited as a child to wake up Christmas morning. It goes like this...

After the kids are in bed, I, like many parents, play Santa and place presents under the Christmas tree to be seen on Christmas morning. I tuck them all neatly under the tree, beside the tree, and a few smaller gifts in the branches of the Christmas tree. Because I have two children, our Christmas tree is usually pretty full of beautiful presents that stem out beyond just the skirt of the tree itself.

This Santa Clause tradition is the norm for most families I know. However, I take the Christmas Eve routine one step my parents did when I was a child. Rather than just place wrapped presents under the Christmas tree, I (Santa Clause) leave a few unwrapped presents out on the floor in front of the wrapped gifts. Usually these presents include clothes, small toys, school supplies, coloring books, and a Christmas stocking full of fruits, candies, hygiene essentials, and small games and toys (depending on what will fit). The cat even gets a stocking full of treats!

As a child, I remember how thrilling it was to wake up on Christmas day and see that Santa had left me unwrapped presents that I could view in plain sight. This meant that I didn't have to wait till the evening to open Christmas presents, as our Christmas tradition always goes...dinner, dessert, then presents. The reason I passed this open gift tradition to my children is to share the excitement I alway felt on Christmas day...really feeling that Santa Clause had been there and was showing me so with his small assortment of presents I could play with immediately.

I'm sure your Christmas Eve/Santa Clause tradition is as wonderful as mine and that every Christmas day brings a million smiles. Please feel free to share your Christmas traditions in the comment box below. I'd love to hear them!

Get in the Christmas Spirit With Santa Clause Coloring Pages

Looking for great coloring pages where your kids can decorate Santa, his elves, and all things Christmas? Please visit...

Santa Clause Fun

Click on each picture to be taken to a printable Christmas image page.

Santa Clause Quilted Throw Pillows

Santa Clause Throw Blankets

Santa Clause Lamps

Love Santa Clause and Christmas Time?

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    Post Comment

    • aesta1 profile image

      Mary Norton 

      3 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Santa will always be part of our Christmas.

    • LikinTrikin LM profile image

      LikinTrikin LM 

      7 years ago

      Absolutely!!! What a wonderful lens *blessed*

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      Hek yeah! Kids love it too.

    • bharat01 profile image


      7 years ago

      I Love Christmas and Santa, we enjoy a lot on Christmas day, you have made a very nice lens, great job done by you, and Merry Christmas.......:)

    • fugeecat lm profile image

      fugeecat lm 

      7 years ago

      Christmas is so much fun and Santa is so wonderful.

    • safereview profile image


      7 years ago from Kansas City

      Love both Santa and Christmas... and this lens! :) Great job.

    • WriterJanis2 profile image


      7 years ago

      It's my favorite holiday.


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