Thank you everyone for the warm greetings. It really was a wonderful Christmas season, lots of family and friends and without stress. The way it should be.
Unfortunately The Czech Republic is slowly changing. Advertising is starting earlier and this family event is slowly giving way to commercialization and the childrenís larger expectations of presents.
I hope to keep the real meaning of Christmas alive in our family, although itís harder to get our 12-year-old daughter to sing along. She is leery of Santa and we try to explain the spirit of Santa. We were able to twist her imagination a little this year by rigging a chimney that use only for smoking meat or fish. Our son annually prepares cookies, milk and opens the grate for Santa to enter. This year my wife and I placed bells and a line to close the grate in the chimney. All was controlled from our bedroom in a way that the strings and bells would be pulled up through the chimney and disappear. At 3 AM the bells started ringing. Our son heard the bells and woke his sister. Both remained in bed as I rang the bells for a good 5 minutes. We knew they were awake but puzzled as to why they did not sneak a peak out their door and into the foyer. My wife then went to them asking what was happening, to our surprise they were both afraid to go out and see. As they walked down the steps I pulled and closed the grate with a loud bang, the kids started running back up the stairway. The happenings of this Christmas Eve remain a mystery to the children. www.Santacla.us