On the Saturday before Christmas, the Schmitts (Ryan and Tyler’s family) hosted a cookie decorating party for the kiddos to use for their Santa snack. Sweet Sara baked 200 (?!??!?!) delicious cookies, and those kids went to TOWN on decorating them and maybe tasting a few here and there. Pretty soon, they were running around the backyard like a ton of hooligans, screaming and laughing. What they didn’t know was that Santa was making a surprise appearance at the party!
While HG was a Santa champ last year and saw him several times, she has had a change of heart this year. She tells me that Santa is like Jesus where she can just talk to him in her mind and tell him what she wants, so she doesn’t need to see him in person. We’ve seen him out and about a lot this season, and she completely puts the brakes on and won’t even talk about it. SO I was standing at the window watching for her reaction when she saw Santa walk into the Schmitts’ backyard. She stopped immediately and just stared, and when she saw the other kids swarming him (and keeping him safely at distance from her), she went right back to playing.
Santa came inside and gathered the kids around the tree to read a story to them. HG was fine with that, but when he started having kids line up to sit on his lap, she beelined it straight back to the backyard. When I realized that kids were getting gifts for having a turn with him, I asked her what she thought about it, and she dropped what she was doing and agreed to talk to Santa as long as I was with her and she didn’t have to sit in his lap. She waited until the very last child had a turn and then she timidly stepped up to him. She had her baby doll in hand, and that smart Santa sensed she was nervous so just started talking to her doll. She got tickled and started to loosen up. He finally asked if she and her baby wanted to sit in his lap, and I got the best ever Santa picture of them! SUCCESS! She was happy to get a huge package of bouncy balls from him, and the cats love it too.