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Santa!  I know him! Okay, I don’t really know him, but I do know where he hung out last night.  He was at our local library to visit with the kids.  We took Ben to see him and get the obligatory picture.  I love taking Ben to see Santa at the library.  They do a really great job of making it a nice experience.  First of all, it is inside.  This winter hasn’t been too cold yet, but being indoors is always a plus.  Second, they hand out numbers so you don’t have to stay in line the whole time.  Sure, the wait to get a number is a little tense, but after that you can let your child wander around.  Ben isn’t big on staying in line, so it was nice to not have to do so for too long.  Finally, there is a lot to do at the library!  While you are waiting for Santa, they have a bunch of crafts and activities set up.  Ben is still too young for the crafts, but I know he will enjoy them in future years.  The kids section at our library has a bunch of toys for kids of all ages, and Ben enjoyed playing with some of those.  If you get bored at the library, there are always plenty of books to read.  Plus, it is a pretty safe place to let kids explore (while keeping an eye on them).

Ben enjoyed playing with the toys while we waited for Santa, but he really liked crawling around.  The library is a big place for a little guy!  We let him crawl around and explore.  We stayed by him of course, but let him decide where he wanted to go.  He was so good about it!  He just crawled around and looked at things, earning a lot of smiles from other library patrons.  He had a blast, until we ruined it by making him see Santa that is.

Ben was one of the first kids to lay eyes on Santa.  He happened to be nearby where Santa made his entrance. At first, Ben went towards where Santa was coming from.  There were bells jingling which got his attention.  But as soon as he saw Santa, he slowly backed away.  At that point though, he was just kind of looked like he wanted to avoid Santa, but he wasn’t really bothered by his presence.  Ben just went on his merry way crawling around.  Eventually we had to line up, and I was again so glad we didn’t have to wait in line for too long.  Ben wasn’t super into staying in one place, but he was pretty good about it.

Then, the time came.  We went into the room. The family ahead of us was finishing up, and the little one in that group wasn’t into Santa at all.  Ben was thoroughly freaked out by Olaf at Christmas Walk, but Santa is didn’t have a mask on or anything.  Pretty much all the main guys in Ben’s life (Pat, Omi, Grampa, Uncle Chris, Uncle Jared) sport some sort of facial hair.  I was hopeful the beard wouldn’t throw him off.  But I did know that Ben is in the stranger danger time of life, so I crossed my fingers and we strode up to Santa.

Well, it didn’t go so well. Ben burst into tears and pretty much cried the whole time.  Poor Ben.  Poor Santa!  I have to assume that those kind people that play Santa are used to this kind of reaction.  Santa rolled with it like the pro he is and let us take some quick pictures with him.  We thanked Santa and headed out.

Once we were out of the room, Ben recovered pretty quickly.  He had the sad single tear going on, but overall he was fine.  Pat, Ben, and I grabbed some dinner afterwards, and Ben really enjoyed that.  So we ended the evening on a high note.

Despite the tears we will return next year to see Santa again.  And now we have the “Crying with Santa” picture every child needs.

Excited to be at the library!
Seeing Daddy at the end of the day is always fun.
Meo and Omi!
Meo and I are pumped for Santa!
Always more hugs
Looking at books
Play time!
Time to explore…
Hide and seek with Meo
Found her!
Meeting Santa
Family picture with Santa and a crying Ben
Fully recovered at dinner
Meeting Santa in 2013
As you can see in last year’s picture, Ben didn’t cry when meeting Santa.  He definitely had a “Who the heck is this guy?” look though.  Perhaps that should have tipped me off to this year…  Oh well, we’ll try again next year!


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