Every year, we visit Santa at the downtown Nordstrom. I love the ritual - the same place year after year, the same backdrop against such changed children. And downtown this time of year, for all its madness, is beautiful. The life size star of Bethlehem atop Macy's, the larger than life Christmas tree in Westlake plaza, the carousel, the twinkly white lights literally everywhere. Then there are the conversations with Santa. I'm always surprised, at least a little, by what transpires. Most memorably, one year Abbott asked for cereal and a new box of crackers. I worried we would be directed to the food bank at the end of the visit.
Today, they thanked Santa for the kittens they got last year, and then Cal asked for 'a painting of you' and a nerf gun. We don't buy toy guns; however, the boys have been having lots of fun at a neighbor's with them. Perhaps Santa is a loophole to my refusal to buy any? Abbott then proceeded to ask for a nerf gun also, in addition to a Harry Potter Lego Hogwarts castle, and a pair of Harry Potter slippers, with one slipper looking like Harry and one looking like Ron. That crazy Santa, he told Abbott 'I'm sure the elves can do that, no problem'. Those elves, they'd better get busy.