Black Santa is back in the building and I couldn’t be happier. Once again, the brown faces of my red-suited Santas are bedecking my office — old favorites along with some new figurines tucked in on my shelves, walls and desk.

The tallest ones rim the edge of my desk — many hand-carved and handcrafted — dressed in fur hats, and elegant robes, holding naughty and nice lists and hoisting overstuffed bags of gifts. On the multi-tiered steps atop my festively accessorized file cabinet, some of the smaller ones stand cheek by jowl, including African Kente cloth Santa and snow globe Santa, who also lights up.

My animatronic Black Santas who move have added something special to the office display. It’s so calming to watch the one sitting in his sleigh lead his reindeer in an endless loop around a ceramic-lighted tree. I’m also enthralled with my new Black Santa holding Christmas lights in one hand while going up and down a tall white ladder. I regularly hum the medley of holiday tunes that accompany his never-ending climb.

With skin tones that range from dark amber to milk chocolate to smoky black, I am surrounded by the many iterations of Black Santas. I never tire of looking at them, and I’m pleased by my colleagues’ excitement. One passed by as the hourslong transformation from daily office decor to Ebony Santa Wonderland was underway. He did a slow gaze around the room and with a broad smile declared, “I don’t know where to look; they’re everywhere!” Call that #Blanta (as in Black Santa) goals.

My Black Santa collection has more than tripled in size — up to 200-plus — since I started my year-round rummaging through specialty shops and crafts fairs. I don’t know for sure because I’ve yet to complete the inventory I started three years ago. And of course, I’m still adding to my treasures!

I’d like nothing better than to best the New Jersey woman who singer Kelly Clarkson featured on her talk show last year. Crystal Kittles says she can’t confirm, but some speculate hers might be the largest collection. I might be better positioned to compete with her now that I have inspired an unofficial search team. For months, these volunteer holiday elves have sent me multiple texts of Black Santas spotted out in the wild. But I’m a lot pickier now. While it’s wonderful that there are more mass-produced Black Santas, I want the ones that are solo standouts.

Meanwhile, I love seeing Black Santas popping up in pop culture. One of the white characters in a recent holiday movie was wearing a Black Santa sweater. Oreo’s 2022 holiday TV ad still makes me smile: the suspender-wearing Black Santa dips the beloved chocolate cream cookie into his glass of milk. And there are two new Christmas movies starring comedian Eddie Murphy and hip hop artist Ludacris, respectively, which highlight hip and modern Black Santa characters.

Off-screen, the Mall of America, where Santa Larry debuted as the mall’s first Black Santa in 2016, just added an Asian Santa last year.What a thrill for kids of color to see themselves reflected!

Joyful inclusion should be what the holidays are all about. I grew up with and enjoyed the white Santa whom author Clement Clark Moore wrote had “cheeks like roses.” But for me, Black Santa is a sweet, special gift, and a fun way to spread the joyful spirit of the season.