‘Tis the season for those lovely pictures with Santa! Unless you’ve got a Santa costume stashed in your closet, it’s going to cost you for those priceless photos so here are some suggestions to get the most out of your pictures.
There are a few key times NOT to go:
1- Don’t go during or around nap time
2- Don’t go during or around a meal time
3- Don’t go late enough that you MIGHT end up messing with bed time
I promise you any three of those situations will give you uncooperative children and pictures that will end up on one of those awkward family websites. Do your best to go at a time when kids are well rested and fed! Likely the line will be long to see Santa (depending on where you’re going) so bring snacks if you have to in order to keep kids happy longer.
Hopefully the photographers know what they’re doing and they’re used to kids going bizzerk from sitting on a strangers lap. Do your best to talk up Santa and what he does and how nice he is. If you can give your kids a sense of familiarity with Santa they are likely to do better sitting on his lap for a photo. Show pictures to your kiddos and watch Christmas movies to also encourage seeing Santa. If your kiddo is going to freak they’re going to do it regardless of how much they love Santa.
One of the methods you can try for a non crying picture with Santa is the drop and go. Simply tell the photographer to be ready, warn them you know Johnny won’t happy and simply drop him on Santa’s lap and quickly move out of the way. You’ll likely get a stunned face from your kiddo which could be just as interesting as screaming. Another trick is to stand behind Santa and duck once the photo is taken. Sometimes you can stand far enough off to the side while holding your little one’s hand that they feel safe enough just to sit for a few seconds. Sometimes letting them hold a favorite toy or something is another easy way to comfort them. Bribing is always an option for those children who can understand that.. after all chances are you’re in a mall, what’s a cookie going to hurt for being such a good boy with Santa!? And as always, it is required as your right of parenthood to stand in front of your child and Santa and jump up and down and make silly faces like a fool!
Just keep in mind, your child isn’t the first nor the last kid to cry with Santa.. and imagine all those photos you’ll have showing the progression of Johnny growing and going from screaming with Santa, to that awkward “I know you, but I don’t know you” face, to being ‘too cool’ to sit on Santa so he’s just going to stand there with his little sister simply because you told him he could have an extra half hour on the xbox when he gets home.
As always, make sure to report back with your favorite picture with Santa story!