This past week she was letting her mother know about some conversations she had exchanged with Emily, a girl who sits near her in class. It seems that Emily's older sisters might have enlightened her on some topics and she felt a need to share the info with Lillie. So, in pretty typical Lillie-fashion, the info was passed along in conversation with Bridgette. As soon as she got a chance, Bridgette made a quick call to her mother (me) to get a bit of advice. As always, I adhere to the honesty and openness is the best course and encouraged such this time as well.
The next morning, after trekking out to feed her horse, Blaze...after preparing her own microwave pancakes for breakfast...she told her mother...
"Another thing Emily told me is that her father is...you know."
Bridgette took a deep breath and swallowed (to make her heart get back down into her chest and out of her throat) before she said, "No, I don't know. You will have to explain."
"Santa Claus," explained Lillie.
Before another half-heartbeat, Lydia vehemently exclaimed, "Well, Emily is a liar, Lillie! Ain't she, Mama?"
(...and she kept repeating that statement several times.)
Lillie went on to explain that she looked closely at Emily's ears and, "they did look a little pointy."
Bridgette asked her if she didn't recall what Emily's dad looked like last summer when he coached a softball team and Lillie did remember...
"Emily is a liar, Lillie!" exclaimed Lydia again.
So, Bridgette suggested that maybe Emily was pulling Lillie's leg a bit and off to school they went.
Fast forward to our family Thanksgiving gathering...
We were all feasting at my mother and father's house and the doorbell rang. Papaw nonchalantly opened the back door and guess who was standing there...
Like children do, Lydia came running to the door to see who had arrived and as her eyes widened, Santa said, "Hi, Lydia. Where is Lillie?"
I think that sealed it.
Emily was confirmed as a liar with no doubts!
Santa came in and knelt down to talk to the children. Recognizing an old friend when she saw one, Lillie began talking...
Having a serious talk with the man, himself!
She let him know exactly what made her list. She also requested that he include a halter for Blaze and some treats for him and Benny to share and maybe a few treats for their puppy, Huck. She explained that they have Chester, an elf-on-the-shelf, who comes to their house and described some of his antics - including when he hung underwear on the mantel. Santa also listened to Lydia's list and responded that he wasn't so sure about her getting a pony since that is hard for him to transport in his sleigh. Lydia, who has always been fearful and stand-off-ish toward Santa, gave him, not just one, but two hugs!
Santa asked them to record their lists in his book so that there was no danger of forgetting. He visited with each of the children there, calling many by name - including Mike and me! Then, he slipped quietly out the back door and went on his merry way.
I guess you can imagine what the talk for the rest of the evening centered round. Even on the trip home Santa was the main topic. Lydia knew Emily was a liar and, "Lillie you need to tell her she's a liar!"
Lillie noticed, "He even knew our names when he walked in! And, I think he may bring me everything on my list I made him."
Even the next morning the girls were reflecting on the experience with their visitor and Lillie decided, "I gave him a hug...twice. I think I'm in good shape."