In an attempt to get into the  Christmas Spirit we thought it would be fun to take Addison to the town’s Snowfest over the weekend.  It was a good idea, but it was 75 degrees outside, and that will never say Holiday Season to me.   Our plan was to play in the snow with Addie and there were three snow zones set up.  There was a hill for tubing, a big kids snow area and a toddler snow area.  The lines for all of the snow activities were a mile long and the snow was rapidly melting.  Of course it was melting!  It’s 75 degrees outside.

We worked our way down past the snow and all the vendors – mostly selling things like health insurance and windows (really?) – to Santa’s Pavillion where the line was only half a mile long and therefore, we deemed, reasonable.  It was one of those “bring your own camera” things.  I thought that was nice because I’ve been reluctant to take Addison to the mall and pay $20 for a picture of her screaming with her eyes closed.    The thing I forget about pictures with Santa is that the point of seeing Santa is not to get a picture taken with him, but to sit on his lap and read him a laundry list of what you want for Christmas.  There were probably eight people in line in front of us.  But one of those people was the parent or guardian of 8 children and when that person got to the front of the line, kids started running in from all directions, I think one crawled out of the lake for his turn to make demands of Santa.

Knowing this was going to take a while, Scott and I took turns; one of us standing in line while the other chased Addison around the grounds.  Since Addison has never met a drop of water she didn’t like, she made a bee line for the lake.  Unfortunately, it was while she was on my watch.  Where her father would pick her up and find some other fun thing with which to distract her, I wasn’t born with that parenting skill.  So I stood there clutching her hand, pulling in one direction, while she pulled in the opposite direction, grunting and  attempting to take both of us into the lake in a toddler tug of war.  Because swimming is fun and, after all, it is 75 degrees outside.

When she realized that pulling and grunting and stomping and biting was not going to work, Addison sat down like a proper child.  Just sitting on the ground, watching the waves lap at her feet.

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She turns to inspect the grass…

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And just when she thinks that silly ol’ Mommy has let her guard down she starts backing herself into the lake for a swim.

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But there would be no swimming on this day and we returned to meet Scott in line.  It was almost our turn to see Santa and when we got to the front of the line Addison, who seconds earlier was running around  squealing like a banshee, became very still and quiet and slowly backed into her father.

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As we made our approach there was no crying.  I was hopeful.  No clawing.  No scaling of shoulders.  In fact, Addison was completely unreadable which I took as a good sign, because in these situations I can usually read Addison like a book.  And it’s almost always some sort of horror story.  As Scott bent down to put Addie on Santa’s lap, she realized she better act fast if she wanted to get out of this.  Begin histrionics.

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Santa is one exceedingly nice guy to be able to look at a screaming Addie Baby coming toward him and keep a smile on his face.  Even I was cringing.

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And Scott, bless his heart, was so patient and did everything he could to make this fun for Addie.

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Man, this guy was a good sport.

If there’s one thing that has taken me far too long to learn about my daughter, it’s that Addie will not do what she doesn’t want to do.  No amount of smiling and cooing or begging and pleading or bribing is going to change her mind.  So we didn’t push it.  Pushing Addison in a situation like this will only lead to people getting hurt; probably Scott and definitely Santa.

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So Merry Christmas, Internet.  Don’t be offended if you don’t get one in the mail.

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