Dear sweet A.J.,
Oh, my innocent little boy. Words cannot express how much we love you. I so look forward to Christmas time since I know how much you anticipate the birth of our Savior and all of the celebrations that encompass such an event with so much glee.
We speak often about the preparations, the decorating of the tree, the visit from Santa and of course the reason for the season, the birth of Christ. You listen with excitement as I tell you about each upcoming event that keeps us so very busy during this holiday time. You whole-heartily agree to cooperate and be a "big boy" as we head out the door to fulfill each of these memories that we want to forever engrave in our minds.
So, my question to you, sweet little one, is WHY? WHY? WHY? Why does it take 47 pictures for you to look at the camera ONCE? Why is it that we must entice you with candies, toys and other forms of bribery just so you can peek at the little man inside the
lens circle or beg you to show the little man your teeth in order for you to smile? Your siblings tire so easily and quickly join the choir of chants, heard near and far, that rhythmically repeat the same words, "AJ! C'MON! PLEASE LOOK AT THE CAMERA!"
I noticed especially during our 47 attempts at getting a beautiful picture for our Christmas card how much your Daddy loves you. He always expresses his love, but for some reason after about the 20th attempt, I noticed he was holding you especially close and maybe had a
death-grip bit tighter embrace around your little body. I'm still a bit baffled at why there were beads of sweat forming on his forehead when it was a crisp 60 degrees outside.
I know that years from now we will look back at the pictures of our visit to Santa and smile. Yes, dear boy. That's the one, the dear old Santa, whose cheeks were just the perfect hint of faint pink when we arrived. Ah, and do you remember Santa's helper? The little elf? She was the one who wanted us to
desperately get out leave with magical memories through pictures attempted 6 times to get you to look at the little man inside the circle? Although I admit that I was getting a bit worried and was considering suggesting to her that she maybe see a doctor. I'm not sure why, but her breathing was getting increasingly heavy as our visit went on. Hmm.
You are such a joy. Do you recall our departure from the same sweet Santa with the pink cheeks and the kindred spirit? AJ, you remind me of a rainbow, splashing color wherever you go. When we left Santa, his hair seemed a tad bit whiter
not to mention frazzled. And those cheeks. No, Santa no longer seemed to possess that same faint-pink color. Instead, I quickly noticed how your charm magically transformed the color of his cheeks to a stunningly bright, crimson shade! Oh, you must've brought such joy to him as you wiggled and squirmed while talking away. I know he must've appreciated the break from having to speak as you allowed him quite some time to sit quietly and enjoy your company. He was so relaxed that I think I even saw his eyes roll back a couple of times. As we were leaving and you were proudly hailing, "Bye-Bye, Santa!", I could almost see a tear in the corner of his eye.
Since this letter is for you to view many years from now, I have included above just a small collage containing a few of the many attempts on that
dreadful sunny day we tried so hard to get that one magical Christmas picture. To make it a little easier for you, I have highlighted which little person you are. Yes, darling. You certainly do become very interested in your surroundings when a picture is to be taken.
With all my love I thank you for continuously striving to ensure that my level of patience is always tested and that I remain a good Catholic Mama by attending confession more often than I ever believed I would have to go. I also thank you for indeed engraving these memories in our minds. We certainly will never, ever forget days like pictures for Christmas cards and visits to Santa, not to mention the looks on your family's faces when I tell them that it's time for another family event.
I love you endlessly,
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