Every year since my husband and I were engaged, we have spent Christmas eve with a family who was kind enough to take my husband in as one of their own after the death of his parents when he was a teenager. Actually, their relationship with him goes back way before that, to when he was a little boy and they would baby sit for him while his divorced/widowed mother worked.
When he was little, he would be included in their Christmas eve celebrations even though he was a bit of a brat. He was included when all the children gathered around to sing songs around a piano, and when a neighborhood Santa came to visit their house.
Time passed and those children had children, and my husband's mother and step-father passed away while he was still a teenager. This family continued to include us each and every year and treated our three children like their own grandkids. Our kids were included in the singing, and the neighborhood Santa visit. All of the screeching and playing would come to an abrupt halt the minute they heard the doorbell and the calls from parents that "Santa's here!!" They, like their parents all did at one time, all really did believe this man was the "real" Santa and stood wide-eyed, mouths gaping in awe as he jingled his bells and ho-ho-hoed and asked each one if they had been good little children to which they all nodded "yes." As he left they would run to the windows to see the sleigh and reindeers to which we replied they could not because it was on the roof! When they asked if they could go outside and see it, we said that it was too cold and Santa was probably gone already because he was in a big hurry (or some other reason we made up).
Now there is yet a new generation of kids and we are now the grandparents (or old enough to be grandparents) and we sit and reminisce about the old days when our kids were small as we watch the little ones once again sing their little songs, and wait for Santa and rush to the windows in hopes for the glimpse of the magic sleigh and flying reindeer. It made both my husband and I a bit weepy in the eyes as we remembered those days when our kids were little and way back to the days when we were little ones ourselves.