Monday, December 12, 2011

the train to see santa

Fletcher is 3.  Fletcher is a boy.  Therefore, Fletcher is obsessed with trains.  It's like a proven scientific fact.  So last year, since we had a great time taking him on the Santa train, we thought we'd do it again this year.  Although the South Carolina train museum is much smaller than the Illinois train museum, Fletcher still loved it. 
We did not expect the loooong ride, though.  Last year, it was about a half an hour, and then you got out to see Santa, waiting in line to sit on his lap.  This year it was an hour and a half round trip, and Santa was on the train.  So we went for about 45 minutes one way, and then the train went back for the other 45 minutes.  It was about that 45 minute mark that the natives got restless.  Luckily my kids enjoyed it and were happy, but there were other kiddos on the train that were READY. TO. GET. OFF.  Or to just see Santa already.
And of course Rowan was happy anytime you handed her a snack.  She's easy that way.  The only time she got upset was when the guy leading the sing along moved onto another song than "Jingle Bells."  That's her favorite.  And it's the only one she knows the words to sing along to.  Although she is getting pretty good at "Oh Come Oh Come Emmanuel."  We kept them happy with tickles, snacks, toys and books.  And with incessant renditions of "Jingle Bells." 
The littles also entertained themselves by watching the countryside out the window, and occasionally licking the very same window.  Yuck.
And since mama reacted so strongly AGAINST licking the window, they liked to keep on licking just to rile me up.  Fun.

And then came the main event.  Santa!  Fletcher enjoyed talking to him and telling him what he wanted for Christmas.
But Rowan?  Not so much.
After Santa moved onto the next child, Fletcher asked, quite loudly, "But where's the REAL Santa?"  Oops.  After trying to hush him, I told him that it WAS the real Santa, and that he was just visiting from the North Pole.  But Fletcher was not convinced. I think maybe the thick southern accent really was a give away.  Santa's not from the South, OK?  Sometimes Fletcher is too smart for this mama. 
They both kept their eye on Santa the whole time he was in our train car.
After the train ride was over, we checked out the caboose and some Pullman cars.  Fletcher's favorite is the caboose.
Later when we went out to dinner that night, we saw the "real" Santa, according to both Fletcher and Rowan.  There was a man waiting for his table in the waiting area with us.  He was in regular clothes, but he had white hair and a real white beard, and glasses.  And he was very round, indeed.  He winked at the kids, and Rowan got all excited, pointing and saying, "Santa!"  She even approached him a few times to say hi.  She was much more talkative and friendly to this Santa.  And he leaned down as he was leaving to tell Fletcher to be a good boy.  Fletcher's eyes got all WIDE and he smiled so big.  Perfect ending to the day!

*Bonus points to anyone who noticed that we're wearing matching shirts.  Yes, we are THAT nerd-ay. 

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