Santa’s Hat

By: Darlene G. Snyder

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This is a story that I wrote and was published by Xulon Press  in a anthology titled, I’ll Be Home For Christmas.

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The sound of the knock on our door and then a big, “Ho, Ho, Ho, Merry Christmas!” sent all three of us squealing and running for cover. We just knew Santa had come, caught us awake and out of our beds. There will be no toys for us this Christmas if he finds us awake, we thought.

We had just spent time with visiting family. My aunt Kathleen or “Kat” as we fondly called her, my uncle “Deb” shortened from Delbert, and their two children, Ricky and Debbie had just left our house.

Mama had cooked a great meal for all of us. My brother, sister, cousins and I played games, told jokes, and did everything we could to make time pass. Our anticipation of Santa’s arrival caused us great anxiety. We had been outside looking up toward the sky; checking to see if we could see Santa and his reindeer anywhere. “Look!” one of us yelled out, “over here, hoof prints in the snow.” That sent us all in a tizzy, and running for the house, for we just knew it was from the reindeer.”

After the adults assured us that it wasn’t time for Santa, that those prints were not made by reindeer, we calmed down and went back to our playing. Soon it was time for the cousins to go home. We said our good-byes, while kidding about keeping watch for Santa Claus.

We still had Santa on our minds as we went through the routine of getting ready for bed that night. We hadn’t quite made it to bed when we heard a knock on the door. The excitement, the euphoria was like electricity in the air when we heard, “Ho, Ho, Ho. Merry Christmas!”  Could it really be Santa? Mama opened the door and as we peered out from behind her, we spotted our uncle. He’d returned to the house, because he’d forgotten his hat!