My son is 7 years old and he is in the 2nd grade. It's a nice age because he retains the charm of childhood even as he begins to develop reasoning skills. For this reason, Santa Claus is a complicated figure. JT very much wants to believe and I think that he still does believe. But he asks pointed questions: how is it that Mama promises to wake up if a bad guy comes in the house and yet she sleeps soundly through the night on Christmas Eve? The world is a big, big place: how does Santa get to every house on Christmas Eve?
This year's suspicion centered on just where it is that Santa gets his goodies. In our sometimes cold corner of the world, Santa frequently delivers the gift of fleece. Last year Santa brought a fleece vest. This year Santa left new fleece mittens and a new fleece hat in JT's stocking. Like many of the clothes worn in our house, all of the fleece items came from Lands' End.
"Oh," JT announced as he emptied his stocking, "Santa gets things from Lands End, just like you do. Mama , why don't the elves make these things for Santa?."
Obviously, this query called for a quick response. So I went with the obvious as I explained, "Santa has lots of things to make for people so he asks for help. And the nice people at Lands' End make good warm things like jackets and mittens so Santa must have asked them to make mittens and a hat for you."
He seemed satisfied with this explanation, but I think that I just accused Santa of outsourcing.