It will be Andrew’s first Christmas, first Hanukkah and first birthday all in one month. He will spend his birthday and first night of Hanukkah with me and then go to his dad’s house for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. He won’t ever get to spend Christmas Day participating in the “Jewish” tradition of eating Chinese food and watching movies. I’m happy with that. I don’t need to split Santa with his dad. Let him create his own traditions with his father’s family. I don’t think it’s fair to rob Andrew or his dad of that.
There’s really only one or two things I’ll ever agree on with Andrew’s dad: 1.) Religion- We both are loyal, practicing non-believers. For us, the holidays are an excuse to spoil our kid. 2.) Sharing time- Even though he doesn’t really have much of a say since my court order gives me full legal and physical custody with moderately discretionary visitation (a must if your ex-spouse is delusional), I NEVER say no. Seriously, in the past year, I have never said no to a request. It would be nice if he asked for more time with Andrew, but he never does. If he did, I’d give it to him in a heartbeat. It’s just the right thing to do for Andrew. Funny enough, when you receive the holy grail of custody orders, you don’t feel the need to be rabid or territorial. At least I don’t.
Even though I was raised Jewish, I had Santa. My favorite part of the holiday was leaving a carrot for Rudolph. My dad took a bite every night to “prove” Rudolph visited the living room. We didn’t have a tree primarily because my mother hated the job of caring for a tree or decorating. She hated a messy house and the thought of pine needles littering her floor was too much. I was also assured by my mother that Santa brought gifts for Jewish kids, although only a few because we had a longer holiday and a present each night for eight days (nice add-lib, mom). Once my mom transitioned into becoming a more devout Jew and I no longer believed in Santa, she did away with our family’s brief flirtation with Christmas. Sad face.
Although I won’t be putting up a tree (I agree with you mom, my house is messy enough!), I totally support Santa and his reindeer. I buy into anything that makes my kid smile so I’m sure celebrating, not splitting, two holidays will get me a giggle or two. And TONS of wrapping paper to clean up.