Kendall and I had eye doctor appointments, and since hers was in the afternoon, there was really no reason for her to go back to school. By the time I would have gotten her back and headed home, I would've had to turn right around and go pick her up...so I decided to just keep her out and we did some fun holiday errands. On our list was a couple of returns, a visit to Santa, and (if they were good), a trip to Cheryl's Cookies and Krispy Kreme (all in one day? OMG!) to get Kendall's report card rewards. At Cheryl's, the kids get a free cookie for every A, and it's the same with doughnuts at Krispy Kreme!! And the best part is that Kendall is always happy to share with the rest of us!
So we headed to the optometrist, the kids fully briefed on how to behave in order to get to do the "fun" things on our list. Noah was fully prepared, carrying his Leapster, so he wouldn't get bored and antsy during our eye appointments. He did great...and Kendall and I are both rockin' the house with 20/20 vision. WAHOOO!!
After we left the optometrist, I again briefed the munchkins on how to behave in the mall...plus, Santa was soooo close...did they want him to see them misbehaving? The returns went as smooth as silk...Noah's only slip-up was when he saw Auntie Annie's Pretzels, and couldn't pull himself away. But hey, can you blame the kid? They ARE darn good...and the smell is divine!
Once we got his attention and reminded him that we were walking down to the other end of the mall to see Santa, he was on board. I pointed out all of the spectacular decorations as the kids ooooohed and aaaaaahhed. We were holding hands and skipping through the mall, singing "Santa Claus is Coming to Town." I'm sure people were getting quite a kick out of that, but I didn't care. The kids were having a ball, and so was I. Let 'em laugh!! I mean, have you ever watched "ELF"? 'The best way to spread Christmas cheer is singing loud for all to hear!" Take a lesson from Buddy, peeps! LOL!
Finally, Santa was in sight. Lo and behold, there was only one little girl in line...and she was kind of scared of the Big Man. Noah was in awe. It was hysterical. His eyes were as big as saucers, mouth half open, body frozen. And then, when the cute little girl in all her Christmas finery was finished, Noah's trance was broken. He went sprinting up to Santa, asking him a million questions:
"Hi Santa! I'm Noah! Where are your elves? Where are your reindeer? Has Tinker Bing-a-Ling been telling you I've been good? Have you been to my house before? Did you know we have a chimney? What kind of cookies do you like? Do you miss Buddy? Is there enough Christmas spirit this year for your sleigh to fly? What time will you come to my house? Can I touch your beard? Why were you so mean to Rudolph before the fog came?...and on and on.
Bless that Santa, for he did his best to answer each and every question. I guess he figured he had the time...no one was in line behind us! And then it was time to get down to business...
"Noah, have you been a good boy this year?"
"YES Santa, I've been really, really good!"
"Have you been nice to your sister?"
"Ummmmm....a little bit. I've picked up all my toys!"
( The boy has learned the art of distraction well.)
"Have you been good at school?"
"Yep! Except when Josh hits me. Then I get mad and use my outside voice!"
"Have you listened to your parents?"
"Ummmmmm.....ummmmmmm....I think so. A little bit. Sometimes. I've been pretty good, though, Santa."
"Well, what would you like Santa to bring you this year?"
"I really want a remote controlled WALL-E, and a combine with 2 heads, and some gears!! Do you think I've been good enough for all that? I try REALLY hard!!" (Hmmmmm.....questionable!)
"I think we can arrange that. It sounds like you've been giving your best effort this year, and I'm proud of you! Keep up the good work, Noah."
At this point, Noah's little face lit up and he got so excited, he came running toward me, totally forgetting the sucker they had for him, and the fact that he still had to have his picture taken. It was really too cute. Then it was Kendall's turn. Funny how my totally outgoing girl suddenly gets shy and backward when she's standing in front of Santa Claus himself. What was going on? She wouldn't look him in the eye, kept looking at her feet, spoke softly (softly???? I didn't even know she had a "soft" mode!), and had to be coaxed to sit on his lap. But she finally did, and explained how she's done her best all year long to do well in school and has tried(oh Lord, has she tried) to not get annoyed with Noah...
"But it's hard!!And sometimes it's best not to keep all your feelings inside you, or you just might burst!Sometimes when he's really annoying,I have to go to my room and scream and punch my pillow, 'cause I can't punch him, or I'll get in trouble...you know? I love him...he's my baby brother, but he can be SO ANNOYING SOMETIMES!!!"
(She was unloading...talking so fast that I though she might pass out! I think she was actually sweating when she was finished!)
And to this Santa replied, "Oh yes, I do know all about that. I surely do! I have 3 younger brothers and a younger sister. I know how annoying they can be. You just keep up the good work, and keep trying so hard. That's all you can do. It will get easier! Now, what is the number one thing you would like my elves to make for you?"
I could see the relief in her face. Her worst fears were laid to rest. Santa understood what she was dealing with, and there would be presents under the tree for her on Christmas morning. Apparently, she had been just a tad bit stressed out about it, but now things were all good. After the pictures were taken, we headed down to Cheryl's, where she treated Noah and I both to cookies of our choice...orange citrus for me, and lemon for him. She chose a frosted cutout cookie with red & green sprinkles for herself. We sat and ate our cookies and contemplated the things Santa had said. It was a good day...a very good day indeed!
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