The One About the Reindeer

This post isn’t for the wee little beasts, unless you want to answer a few questions that deal with a somewhat more mature subject matter.

Two Christmases ago, we bought Zoe and Talia a pair of swants. University of Michigan-themed swants to be exact. What are swants exactly? Pants made of sweater material. Apparently these swants are fantastically comfortable because the girls lounge around in them all the time.

So, I thought buying them a new pair of swants for their birthday would be a wonderful idea. I checked online every couple of weeks for a pair I thought they’d like, but each time I found the swants (I like saying that word, can you tell?), two things would occur: 1. they cost more than I was willing to spend or 2. that particular pattern was out of stock. In early January, however, I hit the jackpot.

Yahoo! I thought, as I checked the selection on the screen. It looked like a size small was available in a couple of nifty reindeer-themed patterns. I just needed to decide whether we wanted the red, the blue, or the gray pants. That decision didn’t take long: we needed to go with red or blue because the gray looked too much like OSU apparel (and we all know that OSU paraphernalia is not welcome in this home). I quickly grabbed Melina, asked for her opinion on red versus blue, and then clicked on the “add to cart” button before paying for my purchases and moving on with my day.

Now, I pride myself on reading the fine print and looking at the product descriptions. But that day, I knew I needed those gifts and I needed them soon. We’d bought nothing for the girls up until that time, and I wasn’t sure how long any gifts would take to arrive arrive. I could not, in any way shape or form, celebrate their sixteenth birthdays without at least one gift, right?

When the swants arrived several days later, I chucked them in the back of my closet without opening the package. They stayed there until two days ago, when I peeled them from the bag, wrapped each of the swants in its own wrapping paper, and put them in the small pile of gifts we had for the girls.

Fast forward to our little celebration, when Zoe and Talia opened their package of swants.

Zoe and Talia: Oh great! A new pair of swants!

Tim: What are swants?

Me: Sweater pants. You know, like the Michigan pants they wear.

Tim: Oh, cool.

Zoe and Talia: Umm. Did you not see what was on these pants?

See what was on the pants? Reindeer, of course! How cute might those reindeer be, right? Well, friends, these are no ordinary reindeer. (Or actually, maybe they are . . . ) These very confident reindeer are in the midst of . . . well . . . let’s just say that the URL . . . well . . . read on: (by the way, that URL is no longer active).

That’s right. Humping. Reindeer. I bought my girls each a pair of “Womens’ Navy Nookie Jogger Pants.” (“That title says it all, Mom,” Talia said, and then giggled.) I’m sure you’re just bursting to know what the product description says (from the Tipsy Elves website).

It’s the most salacious time of year with these shocking Fair Isle swants. No, it’s not the humping reindeer that are so titillating to the observer. It’s how great you look wearing these surprisingly flattering sweater pants. Give yourself some credit. Not everyone can rock the swants like you can. That’s why everyone at the office holiday party is staring. Really.

And here’s a visual, just in case you needed one (I had to upload a picture from EBay of a sweater, since I lost the photo of the pants):

A Tipsy Elves sweater with just about the same image of those fornicating reindeer!

I always think about whether my kids will remember me and how they will remember me. I’ve given them something to think about now, right? Someday, as they sit by my side in the old-folks home, they’ll look at one another and say, “Remember when you bought us the pants with the fornicating reindeer on them? What a memorable sixteenth birthday.”

It’s all about the memories, folks, and whether or not you can laugh at yourself. I’m still laughing about this one.

Image of deer by Tapani Hellman from


  1. Gail Aldwin on December 22, 2022 at 12:38 pm

    Lol! As you say, that will go down in family history.

    • Christina Consolino on January 3, 2023 at 7:11 am

      I read this comment days ago, and I meant to reply! So sorry. It was and is a funny story. 🙂

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