When Tresa was little there was a wonderful looking Santa at one of the malls. He had the real beard. I do think he was tired of the Ho-Ho-Whole thing though, because his personality wasn't quite as jolly as one might expect of a jolly old elf! Then there were some really bad looking Santas, the ones where you could see the elastic that held the curly beard in place!
Looking at my picture with Santa collection that I display every year, I laugh at the pictures of my kids crying hysterically, and trying desperately to get away from the guy in red. What's really funny is that I have one of those for each of my three kids, and that always occurred around the same age.
Tresa's screaming with Santa photo came when she was 15.5 months old. The boys were both 19 months old. The one with Michael crying is great! Tresa is 7 years old and at that age, she could just ignore her screaming little brother and smile for the camera.
Then there is the one where Matt is screaming and Tresa is highly embarrassed! She was 10 years old and that's an age where you really don't want the attention to be on you. After all, you already think you might be too old to be sitting on Santa's lap, and then your little brother starts screaming and everyone is staring at you and laughing at the little spectacle on Santa's lap!
Oh, those were the days. When I look at the pictures now, and see the terror on their little faces, I actually feel kind of guilty. Then again, if it really harmed them psychologically, they would all be in therapy. Right?
When the kids got a little older and started asking questions about Santa, the ones that most parents don't like to answer.... I told them this, "When you stop believing in Santa, that's when Santa stops coming."
My kids are 25, 28 and 34, and Santa still stops at our house every Christmas!