The evolution of Eliza's relationship with Santa begins in 2006 (and for those of you concerned about the germ factor for the early years, I will tell you the secret and it isn't photoshop).
2006: Fits in the palm of Santa's hand:
2007: Deer in the headlights:
2008: Abject terror and she leaps from Santa's lap (scaring the bejesus out of Santa):
2009: Starting to think this isn't so bad, but certainly not talking to Santa:
2010: Quite thrilled with the old guy and even chatted it up with Santa:
An added bonus for 2010, the Richter Cousins in their Ugly Sweaters:j
2011: The dynamic changed. Eliza realized that Santa was the key to getting a Wii, and World Peace, so she ingratiated herself to him by giving him a thumbs up to everything he had to say:
The Richter cousins also took a moment with Santa, sans Ugly Sweaters, but with oddly mismatched outfits:
2012: Now at first you may be dismayed at this somewhat angelic photo of Eliza with Santa (but do not despair dear readers...).
Santa invited the Richter cousins to sit and talk about World Peace and finished up asking Eliza to do a portrait of the two of them for him to bring back to the North Pole:
We took our leave of Santa and headed to the elves who will gladly give you photos from Santaland for a small donation.
And before our eyes what wonders did appear!
We didn't have Ugly Sweaters this year, or a wee child leaping from Santa's grip this year.
Instead we discovered the "Give Me the Toys Old Man" photo:
Yes! And here I thought we would break our tradition of spontaneously bad Santa photos! Perhaps Santa was aware of Eliza's unlady-like sneer before he met up with us and was simply cowed into giving into Eliza's demands? Perhaps he wasn't as sweet as we thought, but just scared to say no to Eliza?
2013: After 8 years of visiting Santa Eliza realized it is all about the list (which always includes first and foremost World Peace) so she insists that Santa give it a good read before the official pose.
Eliza is going for a mature look, no antlers this year.
2014: Nine years of visiting Santa! It's very hard to believe Eliza is only a year away from marking her first decade with Santa. And it is also a bit shocking to realize as she sits on his lap that her list if 5 feet long!
May Christmas bring us all Peace, Love, Joy and Laughter.
Anne and Eliza Grace.