This was probably MM’s first meeting with Santa Claus, picture taken for free at a local bank. It still amazes me how much they charge for a picture with Santa at the mall, etc. when you can find free picture opportunities everywhere. Banks, Christmas Tree farms, even Wal-mart all seem to offer a chance to get your picture taken with Old Saint Nick.
This picture still makes me laugh a lot. At 8 months old, he wasn’t really afraid of that large bearded man in red, just a tiny bit curious. I think in 2007 we attempted another picture and he freaked out more. I’m not sure because apparently there is no photographic evidence. I couldn’t find any pictures from 2008 either. In 2009 I know that we took the kids to see Santa at a local farm here in Wisconsin, but I was feeling lazy and didn’t bother taking a picture and then never got around to finding another opportunity.
How did I go three years without getting another picture of my kid with Santa? Isn’t that a thing that people do annually? I sprung on an opportunity today to get a picture of both kids with Santa – for free of course. I was using my small Canon so the quality wasn’t great, but dude it’s better than NO picture at all for four years in a row, right? Plus you can’t beat free.
BB was neither afraid of nor interested in Santa Claus, mostly she just seemed to sit there and say, “Whatev.” MM is totally into the Santa thing this year though, well aware that Santa is basically a celebrity and totally awesome. Though, he kept telling Santa that “The other Santa lives in the clouds at the North Pole” and I kept trying to assure him that there was only one Santa and that he didn’t live in the clouds (that I know of).
My cover might have been blown when we went to Wal-mart after and another Santa was there, and in my opinion he looked noticeably different than the Saint Nick photographed above. So maybe that castle in the clouds idea isn’t completely out of the question?
Dan is partly pleased with the fact that we haven’t made this an annual tradition, not very fond of the whole thing in general. I don’t think I had my picture taken with Santa every year growing up. I only have a few pictures from my childhood with Santa, mostly when I was pretty young. Maybe we did it more, I honestly can’t remember.
These thoughts also lead to bigger questions about the whole Santa conversation in general, the “do we continue the lie” thing which I inevitably answer with a “yes” because I think some childhood lies are in good fun, and are more magical than malicious. I like that in childhood you believe in things even when they are not practical or realistic. And I have to admit, it almost ruins the magic of Christmas when you run into Santa in every store you go to. After awhile your kid definitely might start thinking something is up and it makes the whole thing less special.
I don’t think MM or little BB are going to look through my photo albums or digital photo books someday and ask, “Mom why aren’t there pictures of us with Santa Claus every year?” And really, if there was photographic evidence from each year, eventually a clever kid is going to take a look at those pictures with various Mall Santas lined up and they are going to notice that not all of those guys really look alike and then? The magic might be ruined just because Mommy was too On Top Of Things. So really, my haphazard, forgetful fits of laziness might really be helping my children keep that magical childlike innocence a bit longer.
So you might have to wait until like 2014 to see another picture of my kids with Santa, but you know what? I’m okay with that.