▶ Watch Video: Faith Salie on Santa’s magic

I’ve known Santa for 50 years … or, I guess he’s known me.

When I was really little, Santa brought me presents and joy… I was stupefied with joy!

Faith Salie (far right) is stupefied!

Family Photo

As kids, my brothers and I actually heard reindeer hooves on the roof. And I once talked to Santa on the phone! I called the North Pole, and he knew that I wanted a tape recorder and a cassette tape of “Annie.”

As I grew up, Santa continued to visit, except the things I asked for changed. When I was 39 and single, I sat in Santa’s lap and asked for a baby. Two Christmases later, I was a married mother.

Santa delivers!

In bringing my own kids to sit on his lap, Santa offered me a new kind of joy: their lists are now in cursive! 

We leave Christmas Eve cookies and carrots out for Santa and his reindeer. On Christmas morning, we find the remnants of Santa and Rudolph’s snacks, and proof of his visit in the form of ashy boot prints!

Santa was here – and he wears size 12!

Family Photo

The year COVID prevented us from our traditional Christmas visit to my dad’s house, Santa still found us in our apartment that doesn’t even have a fireplace!

The older I get, the closer I am to Santa. I see him more. I feel like I know him, and I have a deeper understanding of how hard he works to bring hope, the joy he feels when he gives – not just to children but to all of us who yearn to believe.

Santa reminds us that, at least for a short time every year when the nights are long, all of us grown-up kids can experience the gift of magic.

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Story produced by Sara Kugel. Editor: Ed Givnish. 

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