I have the scars to prove it, but Christmas Santa pictures each year were anything but fun with our kids up until this year.
It has been four Christmases in a row now that we have had a Christmas with little ones in our house. In 2009, we celebrated our baby’s first Christmas with our first born, who was only 5 months old. Most who follow me know that, she was a colicky baby, but by this point she was also teething massively. She was not a happy camper. The poor thing was not even a big smiler and when we did get a smile it was like we had struck gold. Even our Christmas pictures at JC Penny’s were a bust, for more on this click here.
So, when we discussed taking her to see Santa at the mall, the overall consensus was no way in hell were we going through that, because she cried if being held by anyone she didn’t know, let alone trying to get a strange man with a beard to hold her in front of many people.
Well, it was Saturday night right before Christmas and there was a knock on our door. I opened the door to find my brother dressed up as Santa. My brother, must have took mercy on us, beside the fact that he truly was the greatest uncle who just loved Emma to pieces and had decided to dress up so that we could get some pictures of her with Santa. God love him, it worked like a charm, because the feeling was mutual pretty much from the get go with Emma to him. She worshipped the ground he walked on (still does) and we got wonderful pictures of her sitting on Santa’s lap (aka Uncle Michael). I practically cried seeing them together.
In 2010, her younger girl wasn’t even a month old and her big sister was on her way to 18 months old. We could have tried to take big sister to see Santa, but didn’t want to drag a newborn to the mall for one picture with Santa. So, Uncle Michael to the rescue again. More wonderful pictures of both girls and Santa (aka Uncle Michael).
Last year, we were actually going to go see Santa at the mall, but our older daughter was truly going through a shy phase that she would cover her face up if she met someone new, so in the end we opted yet again not to try the mall. And you guessed it Uncle Michael was at it again. I was glad we didn’t go to the mall though, because it took forever to get one picture with my brother, because they both went into shy mode around him dressed up even in the comfort of their own own home.
This year, our oldest started pre-school and has been talking non-stop about Santa for weeks now. And even kept telling me she need to go see him to tell him what she wanted. She was adamant. So, I asked around and was told they had a free Santa picture at Hicks Nursery near us as long as you brought your own camera, but then heard negatives from a few others on this. Finally, we heard some positive feedback about the Mall Santa near us.
It was Saturday morning, both girls had their dance class. I waited at the dance studio with our older girl while our baby had her class and then vide versa, while my husband went food shopping. Once dance was over, he picked us up and we stopped home to drop groceries off, get the girls changed and let them use the bathroom, too.
Then, it was off to the mall. the girls were so very excited. When we got to the mall, we went immediately to where Santa was set up and there was only one family in front of us. I spoke to both girls and Emma told me that she was going to tell Santa what she wanted.
A few moments later, it was our turn and both girls walked over to Santa holding my hands. Santa knelt down and talked so softly to them. They were in awe and big sister was the spokesperson for the two apparently answering all of Santa’s questions for both of them. Little sister was totally shell shocked at first staring in enamored, but not our oldest she was in big sister mode and had this one.
Santa asked big sister finally what she wanted for Christmas and she immediately said not missing a beat, “I want the Easy Bake Oven and Barbie Dollhouse.” And then, it was time to take a picture, the two got up on Santa’s Lap (little sister started to warm up now), said “cheese” with big smiles.
In the end, I was impressed and the girls even got a surprise from Santa with their own little cow stuffed animals. By the way when asked later, about Santa Emma retold the whole tale beaming and then turned to me and asked, “But Santa is still going to come to my house, right?” Guess it will be Uncle Michael to the rescue again!!
Jane Marsh says
What a great uncle!
Thanks Jane and I have to agree with you on this whole heartedly 🙂 🙂
I've got a ton to do this morning, Janine, so I'm just stopping by to say hello. Hope those scars heal soon. 🙂 Such little angels…..:)
Thanks Bill for taking a few moments out of your busy day to stop by. And you must know how much I do appreciate that 🙂 🙂
Thanks Melanie and I was so happy to share those stories, because I just wanted to put out there what a wonderful guy my brother is and how much we love him, too 🙂
Seriously great pictures! Can you come here and work your magic with my kids? I can't get a good Santa pic to save my life!
Thanks Meredith and if I could I totally would try to help out!!
Oh they totally do Michelle and Emma told me again this morning, "Santa is coming to my house!" So darn cute, lol!!
Oh Steph, I only have two and know the feeling. For both this pic and the holiday ones at Target, I made Kevin come with me, because I truly didn't want to have to try to do this alone.
Thanks so much Richard and seriously have missed you so. As for the pic with Uncle Michael, that was the best Kevin could get last year, lol 🙂
Emily Cappo says
So sweet and happy to hear it worked out so well this year…I loved hearing about Uncle Michael too — he sounds like a great brother/uncle! I love how you describe big girl Emma with Santa…
Thanks Emily and my brother really is so good to my kids and even to me. Whenever I need anything he is always there. So, I am just so very thankful for him 🙂 🙂
Angie Brewer says
That was very sweet of your brother to do that!
My grandboy won't take pictures with santa unless his momma is sitting on santas lap with him, and he just turned 5, lol.
Thanks Angie and I am still a bit shocked how good my kids were with Santa this year 🙂 🙂
Thanks Julie and could ask my brother for you guys lol 🙂 🙂
Stephanie Sprenger says
Wow- sweetest uncle ever! I love how you included memories of each of your Christmases with your kids- great idea!
Thanks Stephanie. I have so many pictures, apparently I probably should have been blogging sooner, because I am always taking pictures, especially of my kids 🙂 🙂
Stacy Harris says
I have to say….. we still haven't brought the kids to see Santa this year. Maybe we need to put that on the agenda soon. I will sadly say though, we really don't have pictures of the kids with Santa. It makes me so mad that they charge these ridiculous prices. All I want is a candid picture. I don't want a 5X7 or wallets or a package deal. I want my kids to experience Christmas. Ugh – guess I better get to searching for Santa again! 🙂 great pictures and you are lucky to have such a wonderful Uncle Santa!
Thanks Stacy and I am with you on the cost, but caved when Emma kept asking to go see Santa and found it is $20 for the two 5 x 7's. I wouldn't pay the extra $10 for a CD with the picture, but just ended up scanning it in and cropping it on my MacBook. As for my brother, he truly is one in a million!!
So cute little girls. Im glad they bad nice photos with santa. My hubby used to be a santa too to his nieces. Its cute when kids believe santa.
Thanks Chymecindy and that is so very nice to hear that your husband used to dress up as Santa to his nieces, too 🙂 🙂
Thank you so much for visiting my blog! Your kids are super cute, they remind me of myself when I was younger!
My pleasure Leslie and so happy to see you here, too. Glad you enjoyed reading about my kids and that they reminded you of yourself when you were younger 🙂
Fun times! Wow! Glad you got some Santa pictures. My fav is the one with Uncle Michael and you and the girls on the sofa.
Oh thanks Cyndi and I love that picture of all three of us too. I also love the one with Emma from her first Christmas, because my brother was able to get that huge smile out of her, when we had a lot of trouble photographing smiles at that age with Emma.
Dani Ryan says
Oh my – look at how cute they are!!!! I didn't bother last year with my daughter. She was only 8 months old and I figured it would be a bust. But I did go this year and was surprised she sat on his lap. He lured her with a glow stick, which I still use when she gets upset. 🙂
Oh Dani that sounded adorable and it is the little things with kids that get a smile out of them. Last year, when we took our family pictures, Lily wouldn't smile. I did Peek-A-Boo and got smiles and then some. Got to love when it all comes together though 🙂 🙂
Lol, Clark. I think you did fine, but we will soon find out when the contest is over and we have a winner 🙂 🙂
I always thought Santa at the Mall was a bit creepy as a kid, so I think it's pretty normal to be shy. Really great picture!:)
Thanks Courtney and I was totally the shy kid around Santa when I was younger. So can relate to what you are saying.
Thanks so much Vikki. I think that is pretty god shot, too 🙂 🙂
What an adorable Santa story, Janine! 🙂 And thank goodness for Uncle Michael! 🙂 The girls will cherish those memories for years! "I remember the first time I met Santa!" 🙂
Oh thanks Terrye and I truly love looking through all the pictures I have taken of my kids from the beginning and so do my girls. They were sitting with me while I was putting together these photos that shared here and so excited!! I, too, still remember the first time I met Santa by the way (Kevin says I always was a good elf, lol!!).