Last year, Sabrina promised up and down and sideways that she would happily sit on Santa’s lap for a picture. Instead, she walked up, got within 15 feet of the man, and lost her mind. For the next half hour I cajoled, begged, and bribed her in an effort to get 1 lousy picture. At someone, the patron saint of photography must have pressed the shutter because we did get a shot where she didn’t look like I’d just poured spiders in her milk. I grabbed that print and ran, sweaty and completely stressed out, praying that next year be better.
We started out today with 2 excited, happy kids proclaiming their affection for Santa and reciting the lists of items they planned to request. I thought that as long as the line of people didn’t wrap around the entire man, we were golden (this is why we went before Thanksgiving). Ha ha ha ha, man, I laugh at my own bravado.
Sammy and Sabrina love Santa for sure, but they can’t pose for a picture to save their lives. And I did get close to threatening those lives at one point, so I can vouch for the truth of that statement. They have 2 issues that can occur singly or in tandem: not actually looking at the camera and freaky weird “smiles.” I have GOT to figure out another word for them to say because Cheese (or more specifically, “Cheeeeeeeeeeeese”) results in a scary grimace of strain that is anything but happy. And I have no idea why they can’t keep their eyes on the round circle of the lens (no, it’s not a flash issue, they just look everywhere but the camera), but nearly every shot contains 1 or the both of them giving sideways glances or looking down like they’re (not so)subtly trying to see if they dripped soup on their shirts.
I have no idea how many pictures were snapped all told, but it took 2 sessions with Santa (plus a break at the bookstore) to get 1 that was close to acceptable. And again, I grabbed that print and ran screaming away, pulling 2 limp children behind me).
The photo elf was an angel, taking shot after shot with a good measure of patience, and kindly going through every one with me on an extremely slow computer. Mall HR, she deserves a raise.
Thank goodness this is a once a year proposition. That said, I’m terrified of what these kids will come up with next year to screw with me. Let the holidays begin!