How I Got on Santa’s Naughty List

I was SO excited to take Luca to see Santa this year. We didn’t even bother last year. You see, last year, Luca was like this:

Luca's Favorite Place to Be (photo by Jessica Boltman Photography)
Newborn Luca.

But this year, he’s like this:

Who wouldn't do anything to see this smile everyday??
Who wouldn’t do anything to see this smile everyday??

So, of course, I thought that it would be imperative that Luca meet old St. Nick. If nothing more but to get a quick snapshot.

I was prepared for the tears.

I was prepared for the line.

I was NOT prepared to have my Christmas sugar-plum-filled-dreams smashed to bits by the Grinch who was disguised as Santa!

Oh sure, he had a real beard and the whole she-bang, but this was NOT Santa.

Know how I know?

Because Santa is Holly Jolly and not Cranky Panky.

It started-out fine. I mean, when I walked-up to him with Luca, he said, “Hey, I know you!” and smiled at Luca. But then, as he scanned my toddler, he saw something that took the Jolly right out of his Holly… A sticky snack.

His face dropped. “What’s THAT??” he asked seriously.

“Oh, oops,” I say nervously while trying to remove the snack from my toddler’s death grip, “I guess he hasn’t finished his snack.”

“Is it…sticky?” Asked Santa in his most I’m-condemning-you-to-the-Naughty-List voice.

Yes, I confess, my kid had a little bit of a sticky snack in his hand. Mom fail. I totally understand that this is not a good idea. So of course, I’m trying my darndest to remove this atrocious item so it won’t ruin Santa’s beard. This of course, causes my kid to start fussing. Awesome, he’s not even in Santa’s lap yet and he’s already upset.

Santa waits (un)patiently.

I (finally) am able to remove the snack and take a breath.

As I cautiously prepare to put Luca on Santa’s lap, he stops me.

“Wait. There’s two more.” He says abruptly.

People. The kid had a millet treat in his hand. Ok. When he says there are two more, he’s seriously referring to TWO TINY PIECES OF MILLET. If you are not familiar with this nutritious grain, let me enlighten you. It looks like this:



Yep. There ya go. Can you see the ridiculousness here??

Ok, so I kindly remove the TWO TINY PIECES OF MILLET, and proceed to place him on Santa’s lap.

Does Luca get a, “Well hey there little fella?” or a “Merry Christmas Buddy!”


Not a single word.

He just poses for the photo as my son begins to scream and lean towards me.

I quickly remove Luca and rush off, but not without offering a, “Thank you! Merry Christmas!” I did feel bad about the millet and that we had taken-up so much of his time, so I didn’t want to be rude.

But still. I wanted to be rude.

I mean, come-on man, get over yourself! You can at least say something cheery now that I’ve removed the stickiness. Don’t punish my kid for my mistake.

In my mind, this was going to be a magical outing. Again, I knew Luca was going to cry but I also knew that the crying would be quick and painless. I guess you could say the little child within me was personally very excited to see Santa. So it was the little child in me that was crushed when he wasn’t very nice.

I wanted to see his face light-up when he saw Luca. I wanted to see him treat Luca like he was special. You know, the way all kids feel when they see Santa.

Instead, he looked at my kid like he was toxic.

Oh dear, I hope kids don’t get placed on the Naughty List on account of their parent’s behavior. If so, I think Luca is due for coal this year.

Oh, well. The great thing about photography is that it can fool everyone into thinking that everything is great in that moment. Looking at the photos, you would have had no idea about all of this unless I told you. Here they are:

Innocently enjoying his millet treat.
Before Santa saw the stickiness.
Yay! We got one good shot!
And then, inevitably, this happened.

IMG_2401 IMG_2402

There you go. The typical First Meeting of Santa pics! At least those turned-out ok. =)

Merry Christmas everyone and good luck with St. Nick! If you have any interesting stories from meeting Santa, please share! Any other Mom Fails out there??


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