Sadly, I neglected to look up what time Santa arrives at our mall, which happens to be a full hour after the stores open. I obviously failed to allow the extra time needed for him to check his list (twice) and pop a handful of Imitrex. We managed to keep Bean busy during that wait, with help from the play area and countless kiosks scattered between the stores, waiting to suck away your hard-earned dollars for 45 seconds of your child's happiness. (You want your child to be happy, don't you? DON'T YOU?) We are fortunate that Bean has not yet figured out that the little merry-go-round toys actually move when you put money in them, as for now he is content to turn the steering wheel and provide his own sound effects. Beep beep.
After surviving the first hour of chasing Bean around the mall and protecting our wallets from the siren call of those crane grab-a-toy games, we got in line. After a 15-minute delay by the big man (which earned us a free print), they finally allowed the first kid to sit down. After another excruciating 45 minutes of waiting, during which
We plopped Bean in Santa's lap and bolted out of the scene, without so much as adjusting the poor kid's pantlegs. They took the picture immediately and we scooped him back up. It's truly inspiring how quickly toddlers can escalate from mild apprehension to horrified wailing. That being the case, DH and I were actually shocked at how (relatively) calm Bean looks in the picture, as had the photographer pushed the button even one second later, we would have captured trauma level at least equal to the Easter Bunny Incident of earlier this year.
It. Just. Does.
I'm pretty sure one day, Bean is going to thank me. Or something like that. Right?
Anyway, fortunately the rest of the Thanksgiving weekend wasn't nearly as traumatizing for any of us. In fact, it was downright lovely. It didn't escape me how much we have to be thankful for this year. It also didn't escape me that next year, we will have a two-and-a-half-year-old Bean and seven-month-old Twinklets. I will likely not have slept more than 2 hours at a time in least eight months; I will look absolutely haggard (as my optometrist put it) with a tenuous grasp on sanity. If any grasp at all.
Although I know I will have even more to be grateful for in 2010... I think I'll hang on to this Thanksgiving just a liiiiittle bit longer, if you don't mind.