Just when you think you are the Christmas Cheermeister and know everything possible about Christmas, some new information will present itself on your Santa Claus radar. I had no idea until last week that The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus by L. Frank Baum was an actual book. There is also at least one animated show based on the book. How could a Christmas Cheermeister miss out on such an amazing book for so long?
Claus was born near the forest of Burzee. Since he was abandoned by his parents, a kind wood nymph named Necile asks for permission to raise him. The immortal Ak the Master Woodsman allows Necile to raise Claus. Ak is always kind and fair to Claus. He even takes Claus on a trip around the world to show him the human world. The trip is instrumental in guiding Claus to making toys for poor and neglected children. Ak supports Claus in his endeavors to help the children.
When Claus is an adult, he moves from the forest to the Laughing Valley. I picture it looking like a remote area of the world. I don’t think Claus has any neighbors for miles and miles. Claus spends his time making toys for local children. This enterprise gains a following and before you know it, Claus is taking toys to children all over the world. Along the way, he builds a sleigh and finds reindeer to assist him on the yearly trip. On his journey, the stocking and Christmas tree traditions come into existence.
Ak the Great Woodsman helps Claus to get permission to keep the reindeer. I pictured Ak looking more majestic than regular lumberjacks. The artist renditions that I’ve seen depict him as even more majestic than Gandalf. I think the headdress helps with the look.
Eventually, Claus becomes Santa Claus. He gets older and becomes ill. It looks as though the tradition of spreading joy to children could be at an end. However, everyone agrees that Santa Claus should be given immortality so that children will not be disappointed for all of the future Christmases.
Anyone and everyone who loves Santa Claus will love this book. It’s just as magical as Santa Claus himself.
If you are Grinchy or one of the Bah-Humbugs of the world, then you might not understand the beauty of The Life and Adventures of Santa Claus.