Becoming an elf and having your picture taken with your baby elf and Santa. I had such a good time I may quit working at Jennie G's and see if Jordan and Suzi want to move to the North Pole. This was at the Lights Before Christmas at AnMed Health in the Women's and Children's Hospital. You can't see it in the picture but I'm wearing tights (one leg is green, the other red) and curly toed shoes with bells on the tips. I loved the costume except the tights were too short because I guess I'm kind of big for an elf. I dressed Suzi as a baby elf and she had a hat too but I thought it might make her cry if I put it on her; she wasn't in that great of a mood anyway. It was amazing how many children were there, and it was so much fun watching them get excited over Santa. I got to answer their questions about elves, such as "Why can't we see the tops of your ears?" and "Are you going back to the North Pole with Santa tonight?"
Being there reminded me of something I read in one of my favorite books, Thomas Kincade's Come Let Us Adore Him which features his beautiful Christmas paintings and reflections about the season. A lot of people think the Santa (material) part of Christmas is sinful, but he says:
Each of the Christmas events we may be tempted to think of as worldly and wrong, in the light of Christ, point to a purpose much greater. They are the physical, tangible realities we celebrate each year that help our hearts understand the deeper, spiritual truths those traditions represent. When I was a child, I saw Christmas only through the eyes of a child. It was my joy to play with my toys and with my friends on the day when all the world seemed right. As a parent, now, I get a glimpse of the joy our Heavenly Father feels when He gives good gifts to His children. (pp 10-11)
Suzi won't understand the idea of a gift this Christmas and probably not next year either, but when she finally does, I can't wait to tuck her into bed on Christmas Eve and hear her asking "Is it Christmas yet?" every half hour from midnight on. I remember lying in bed under my multicolored hearts comforter with butterflies in my stomach, completely unable to sleep. Would I get the Little Miss Makeup I'd asked Santa for? Games? Candy? What else? It's this first love of Christmas that over the years grows into an understanding of God's gift and a spiritual appreciation of what Christmas means.
...On that note, let's go watch The Best Christmas Pageant Ever and have some hot chocolate.