Ahh, the Christmas season. A time for merry celebrations, good will toward man, and forcing our children to sit on a strange man's lap and take a picture. Over here at the hacienda, we've been having a little bit of stranger-danger dialogue with Sarah. But, at Christmastime, for the sake of the obligatory picture with Santa, we throw caution to the wind and plop our children on a badly-disguised stranger's knee.
I know, I know, nothing's going to happen with all those people around. Plus, who in their right mind would want to take off with someone else's screaming, crying kid?
Heck, maybe that's why the kids are screaming and crying: because they have a firmer grasp on the irony of the situation than us adults do.
The house of Brown is divided over the Santa issue. Whereas Mike grew up with a tradition of some adult family member dressing up every year as the jolly old elf, there are no known pictures of little Julie and Santa even occupying the same ZIP code. That being said, I regret that there aren't any pictures of me attempting to escape the clutches of St. Nick, because I'm pretty good at throwing a fit, even then.
Anyway, now that I have my own progeny to
torture entertain, I like to get the yearly picture done to measure our progress.
Here's a little walk down Memory Lane, beginning with Sarah's first encounter with Santa at 18 months of age:
|Not even the bells could coax a smile.|
By the following year, Little Bro had made his appearance, and neither one of them would even round the corner to where Santa was sitting. There's fear and suspicion in those eyes.
|The anti-Santa force is strong with these two.|
By the time Sis was 3, she'd caught on to the whole Claus/reindeer/presents racket, and so she was happy to make a good impression whilst ensconced on the old man's knee. Will was having none of it and screamed til it echoed from the Apple Store to the Container Store, and everywhere in between.
This year, I had a pretty hefty wager about how fast and far Will would run once he spotted the red suit and jolly smile. Turns out, he REALLY wants that astronaut Mater and Roger Rocket, so he hopped up on Santa's lap of his own accord.
This picture marks the end of an era. No more photos capturing a moment of terror. From now on, we'll have only angelic smiles, laughing eyes, and sticky-peppermint kisses.