Wednesday, December 21, 2011

santa...i know him!

We went to visit Santa last week. While I was pretty sure Laney would do just fine, I had NO idea how Libbi would react. She's seemed to have grown a shy bone as of late.  While she is as loud and sassy as ever at home, she is much more reserved when she first sees new people. She likes to assess the situation and size up the person before she really lets loose. :)

For instance, there's a sweet older man that is a greeter at our church. He stands outside every Sunday and gives the kids "high fives" as they walk into the auditorium. Everyone knows and loves Mr. Bob....everyone except Libbi that is. As soon as we pull into the church parking lot, she immediately starts saying, "I no give Mr. Bob high five." Her fists remained tightly clenched until we are safely in the building leaving Mr. Bob "hanging" each and every Sunday. (And we may or may not tell her that Mr. Bob is sliding on the playground slide as we leave church on Sunday. I'm telling you what, we haven't had one incident with tantrums and meltdowns about the playground since. That, my friends, is parenting at it's finest :))

When we were at the mall last week, Santa was kind of hanging out in his little cottage just waiting on some kids to stop by. We just so happened to be walking by during this "down time" and Santa meandered out to chat with Libbi. Needless to say, she immediately became mute, her chin attached itself to her chest, and I'm sure she was silently willing herself invisible. Her little hands were tightly clenched into fists as Santa's valiant attempts at a handshake or even a high five rivaled the efforts of the infamous Mr. Bob. 

So, with those two experiences fresh in my mind, I honestly thought we were going to have one of the classic Santa freak out pictures to display this year. I tried to prepare Libbi as much as possible, but as most of you know - there are no guarantees when it comes to two-year-old's. We arrived at the mall nice and early. Libbi seemed excited, but again, I still wasn't sure. She kept telling Laney that they were going to sit on Santa's lap and tell him that they wanted "peasants" ;-)
What happened next can only be described as a series of Christmas Miracles...

Christmas Miracle #1 - there was NO line! We walked right up and saw Santa without even having to wait!
Christmas Miracle #2 - Libbi sat on his lap like she'd been doing it all her life. She was actually excited and made an attempt to smile (aka look like she's just gotten a whiff of rotting flesh)
Christmas Miracle #3 - She let Laney sit with her AND without her.
Christmas Miracle #4 - Santa was giving out slinkies! (one of Libbi's favorite toys! And I guess it's a good thing she can't read yet since Santa's elves left the "made in China" sticker right on the front of the slinky....)
Christmas Miracle #5 - Santa's chair is placed in such a way that the Great American Cookie Company's sign is highly visible by those that happen to be sitting on his lap. Let's just say that Santa's elves (and G.A.C's employees) sure knew what they were doing when they set up this whole locale.

After our successful visit with Santa, we went outside to partake in another tradition: The riding of the Macy's Pink Pig! Last year was Libbi's first time to ride the Pink Pig and since I was pregnant with Laney I was just the photographer. This year, we all got to ride! Since Laney was not allowed to sit in my lap for the ride, she and I shared a car and Libbi got to ride by herself. She was over the moon excited to ride all by herself and loved every minute of it! She loves telling Laney that she can't do something because "you just a baaaa-beeee" and this was the ultimate. :)
It's crazy how much can change in just a year! I can't believe how much Libbi has grown...was it really just a year ago that she looked like such a baby?!?
It's fun to see though, that even as some things change....others stay the same :)
(also know as the frozen face look. wonder if libbi will ever outgrow it?) ;-)

our "official" Santa pics from 2011:

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