We woke up on Saturday without any specific plans, only that we would try to visit Santa at Macy’s downtown. So we headed out the door, parked the car on the outskirts of the city, and jumped on the lightrail.
After hopping off the train and making a very quick stop at Finnegan’s toy store (that place is a parent trap), we finally turned the corner to see this.
I’m sure it’s even more beautiful at night, but I was satisfied with the cold wintery day and the flashing led lights that look like little sprinklings of snow.
After looking at the tree for about 2 minutes before the kids got bored and asked to move on, we headed into Macy’s. Based on past experience I had my doubts about whether Thomas would be comfortable talking to Santa and, since Samuel takes Thomas’ lead on most things, our chances of a picture with the big guy were doubtful. Sure enough, Thomas told us he’d rather stand back and look at Santa from a distance. Unfortunately the setup at Macy’s means that this was the closest we got.
And I’m OK with it. Sure, I won’t have that iconic photo of a screaming child in Santa’s lap, but part me of me likes the fact that Thomas is a little wary of strangers, especially the kind who ask you to come and sit on their lap and offer you presents.
The biggest benefit of choosing Macy’s for our Santa visit was that Santa is not the only draw. Reindeer and elves were there in abundance.
Even Rudolf made an appearance.
We then headed over to Pioneer place for lunch and a stop at a couple of stores (the ipad was calling my name at Apple – sadly I left empty-handed).
And then, without warning, it SNOWED! Inside! Sure it was some weird-smelling foam substance, but for the few minutes that we were in the mall it was amazing.
At one point, Samuel simply looked up at the falling snow and let out a big sigh of contentment.
So, you’d think getting a glimpse of Santa, saying hi to Rudolf and an unexpected indoor snowstorm would be the highlight of our day, right? Wrong.
We headed back outside and looked across the street and that’s when Thomas’ head exploded.
They were there to draw attention to the Salvation Army bell ringer (it was working). Of course Thomas was too afraid to get close – those Storm Troopers are bad guys you know – but Samuel was game for a Chewbacca high five.
He even tried to relieve one of the Storm Troopers of his blaster.
That’s one authentic Chewbacca outfit.
After adding a little money to the Salvo bucket (they earned it), we headed further up the street and that’s when our day reached it’s peak. I think the only thing that would have made this moment better would have been if Carrie Fisher herself walked out in a gold bikini (circa 1985 Carrie, not 2010 Carrie). Since that was unlikely to happen, we settled for a Princess Leia stand-in and the scariest guy in the universe. (and some random child in my photo because it was difficult to avoid other people’s photo opps and there was no way my children were going to stand anywhere near the dark side of the force).
I’m told that the guy above on the right was trying to be Luke Sywalker because he has the green lightsaber – but that he “doesn’t REALLY look like Luke Skywaker mum”. I explained to Thomas that even Luke Skywalker doesn’t look like Luke Sywalker anymore. I hope I didn’t crush his dreams.
Thankfully, this guy never changes.
Alas, Darth and the Ishidas had to part ways – Darth, to collect more money for the poor and the Ishidas to enjoy a little hot chocolate as the perfect end to our day.
Well, almost perfect. Thomas’ snow globe ornament that I let the him choose at Macy’s earlier that day was not long for this world and ended up in a wet, glassy mess on the floor of Peet’s (rookie Mum mistake). And, since I couldn’t let the day end on that note, I quickly ran back to buy a new one before we hopped on the train to head home.
Then it really WAS perfect.
And then Samuel got sick later than night and threw up on me – the end.
Ahhh, reality. It always brings us back with a thud.