Well, so last December as the Christmastime neared, Cody and I did what every parent of a young child does. We took Becca to see Santa Claus and get the famed photos. Except our little Christmas elf didn’t want ANY part of being in a picture with a crazy old man in a bright red suit sitting in front of a gorgeously decorated backdrop. She cried. No, actually, she screamed in terror. (Seriously, ya’ll… I was glad there were no other kids in line or they might have changed their minds about sharing their present wishes with the old cherub.) So, we did the next thing all good parents do, and we forced the issue. We ended up getting some super cute pictures with her sitting in front of the Christmas tree- in mommy’s lap… A safe distance away from said man-in-red. Fast forward a couple weeks and we relived the whole scene again… Altho thankfully she didn’t scream, and we already had some ok pics so we didn’t force the issue.
Well, so yesterday it came time for Becca to meet Santa’s Spring counterpart for the very first time. We took her to Chickfila for their Easter celebration, and I honestly wasn’t sure what she would do. The odds were stacked against me:
1. A restaurant we don’t go to very often (we usually visit a different location).
2. Tons of people she didn’t know after a weekend of over-stimulation and a day of just wanting to be by herself in her room.
3. A person she didn’t know dressed in a head-to-toe costume making them no longer look even partially human.
4. A character she didn’t recognize (she LOVES the Sesame Street characters at Sea World).
So yes, it was a bit crazy on my part to think it would go well, but I conjered up that wonderful parent who forced her child to take pictures with the Old Guy and off we went- her dressed in a cute springy outfit from my mom, and me armed with, well, nothing but George.
George- who stayed in the diaper bag from the time we got out of the car until the time we got back in it. She was a pro! We arrived 10 mins before the event started, and already the restaurant was so packed that we got the last high chair, and sat at a table for two! But she ate her dinner, and did a fabulous job making her Easter egg foam magnet craft.
And then, she met him. The big, white, fluffy bunny. Her new bestie. I seriously think she would have stayed and hung out with him longer if we could have let her. She was fascinated. Enthralled. In love.
As we got in the car, the talking began. “Bye bye, Eas-er bunny! See you waiter!” I didn’t have the heart to tell her it’d probably be a year before she’d run into him again. All the way home was this and that about the Eas-er bunny and Eas-er cow. (Yup, there’s one of those, too, folks… She wears pink and has a huge bow and ginormous eye lashes. She’s a bit scary, in my books, but Becca loved her, too!)
All in all, it was a fabulous evening, and though I’m surprised at the outcome, it’s definitely a pleasant-sort-of suprised, and I’m also hopeful… Hopeful that maybe THIS winter will be different, and maybe she’ll let the Big Man Himself hold her on HIS knee for a picture. Maybe if he’s at Chickfila…