When I would picture having kids, I thought I would have zero desire to ever do the whole Santa Christmas photo shebang. But then you really have one, and you want them to do ALL THE THINGS! Last year at Christmas, Rowan was just a wee thing, so this year was his first Santa experience.
I had no desire for the Santa photos, because I thought there would be:
1. a line that would take all afternoon
2. tacky decor that I don't care about photo framing
3. a drive to a mall where I never shop
4. tired, rude employees
5. and a recipe for your child to become hysterical!
Turns out, only #5 happened! -- But I'll get to that later.
In Birmingham, the Summit now takes appointments, so you don't have to wait in any line or carve out any long period of time in your schedule. The design set-up at The North Pole is a gorgeous, modern winter wonderland. Santa is magical, people. Nothing against Bass Pro Shop, but Santa doesn't have taxidermied deer... they are alive and can fly! He lives in a land of pristine snow and magic!
On top of all that, there was easy access without venturing deep into a mall scenario. The employees were extremely laid back and nice! We were waiting on some of the grandparents to arrive, and they let us just chill in a play area -- even though it was past our exact appointment time. While we waited for the fam, there was some awesome hot chocolate and coffee (from Sur la Table)! I mean let's be real, this experience is mostly for the parents' memories, and your infant/toddler is (luckily) not going to remember being put through this testy tradition.
When the time came to meet Santa, he was just the sweetest! As expected, our 14-month-old little buddy was NOT having it!!! I'm really glad he was just a little scared though, and not hitting a severe code red terror level. He was just clinging to me tighter than a kitten with their claws stuck in your sweater!
So guess what? We both sat on Santa's lap! (insert cry-laugh emoji!)
But when better to go ahead and embrace your inner child than Christmas? Even my grandmother did! ...Unless Santa was flirting with her... I guess we'll never know for sure!
Somehow the photographer only barely captured Rowan's terror, and we had a blast! And if you're worried that they capitalize on all the sappy parents' wallets, you can get a 5x7 for only $15, while taking as many phone shots as you wish!
Santa gave Rowan some Bud's Best chocolate chip cookies, and he had a sit in a cushy chair for a little post-Santa-pic recovery time.
Schedule an appointment here! The site does say walk-ins are welcome-- which I didn't know-- but making an appointment is great for making sure you don't have any waiting. As of now (12/12) there are still spots open after 12/14.
Hope everyone is having the best holiday season. MERRY CHRISTMAS, Y'ALL!