On the last evening we were in North Dakota over the Labor Day weekend, we were hanging out in the living room. I was sitting on a recliner and Rhiannon had decided to sit on my lap due to a lack of other seating and the fact that apparently I looked too comfortable. Grace, who just turned three, walked out into the room and immediately took issue with this seating arrangement.
“Don’t sit on his lap. That’s bad.”
Rhiannon thought she would be clever. “But it’s ok – he’s Santa Clause and I was telling him what I wanted for Christmas. Do you want to sit on Santa’s lap?”
I don’t have a lot of experience with small children, but I could see the thought process run through her head. He doesn’t look like Santa, but Santa = presents and a generally good time, so I’ll go with it. And so, on the last day of August, I had a small child telling me what she wanted for Christmas.
“I want a baby.”
“What baby do you want?”
“That one.” And she hopped off my lap, walked over to the toy box, and grabbed one of her dolls. For being new at this Santa thing, I thought I was doing pretty well. Mike walked into the room.
“Michael, get a present from Santa.”
“No thanks, Grace. I’m good.”
“MICHAEL. GET A PRESENT FROM SANTA, NOW!!”
I give the girl credit - she knows what she wants. We traveled to the North Pole and back. We discussed how Santa had to go home tomorrow. Everyone had a good laugh and slowly dispersed to get ready to eat dinner. I assumed that the imaginary Santa game was over.
From down the hall, a small voice called, “Santa.”
“What do you want, Grace?” I walked into the doorway of the bathroom where the voice originated.
There, perched on the front edge of the toilet, pants around her ankles, she looked at me. “I want Santa to WIPE MY BUTT!”