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The Apple and the Tree, Again!

January 1, 2013 - Jen Zbozny
When it comes to Santa Claus, I just say "yes". Yes, there is a Santa Claus and yes, I believe. That's the truth. If you want to split hairs on issues like chimney travel and airborne reindeer, I might duck the specifics but let's be clear about something. Santa Claus is a kindly mystery, he's a gift giver and inspirer of hope and kindness. Santa Claus is a reason for joyful mischief and goodness. How can I not believe in that? How can that not be true, right?

I've come down on what I think is the right side of the "man with the bag" issue, but it raises a small dilemma.

Eve asked him for two things.

Wait, allow me to clarify. She wrote him a letter asking how the reindeer were and included some very nice drawings of herself hugging Santa. Then she made me go tell him what she wanted when we encountered him in the mall over the holiday season. Warily, she kept her distance and politely said hello. Then she shook his hand at arm's length and picked out a lollipop, but let's be clear I had to do all the talking. Santa did a fine job of not doing a spit take when informed that Eve wanted: a) a real live puppy and b) a real live apple tree.

Right. What to do with that one? Bonsai is an option because a little teeny tiny apple tree with little teensy apples would be adorable. It would also require almost as much attention as a puppy. Bonsai apple trees start at around $60.00. That's a chunk of change for a plant that probably won't make it to apple harvest season in fall. In case you haven't noticed, it's winter here too. That cold, white stuff all over is not conducive for planting a fresh little sproutling outside. Apple tree began to make the puppy look like a great choice.

Except it's a puppy. We can't handle a puppy right now. First, we have two ancient cats who do enough damage on their own, second, we leave town quite a bit these days and a puppy would not do well in the car potty. And that white stuff outside again? Who wants to train a puppy to go outside when you have to get up super early and stand outside in the freezing weather waiting for a puppy to figure out where to pee.

Of course, if we had an apple tree, he could pee on the tree. Ugh.

Santa weighed his options carefully and found a grow-your-own apple tree kit. He also sent many other lovely things include Eve's very own hotel for her to operate, check people into, hand out keys, deliver luggage, etc. Pets are welcome but so far she's managed to be pretty accepting of Santa's decision to wait on the puppy.

I don't know what I'll have to do or say when she asks other kids if they got everything on their list and she figures out she didn't. In the meantime, because he DIDN'T bring a puppy, I still believe in the good and kind spirit of the man with the bag !


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