A Christmas visit with Santa

As parents and grandparents we know our children pretty much what they will put on their Christmas list except may be a few things that they may surprise us with when we see their list. How innocent and pure their little minds are and their Christmas lists are priceless. Oh, how I wish they would stay little forever. It was so much fun to sit and watch the long lines of boys and girls wearing their fancy dresses and boys with their shirt and bow tie. Moms always dress them pretty because pictures with Santa make perfect presents for grandparents, family, and friends.

I can close my eyes and see when I used to take all three of my kids to Sears department store where Santa would act surprised when hearing each child’s list and of course there was a long line with kids, some happy, some scared, some teary eyed, as they got closer to sit on Santa’s lap.

As I recall at Christmas time, Montgomery Wards and Sears department store would always have those huge Christmas catalogs full of tempting toys for all ages.

I remember our kids would each take turns and go through the numerous pages with a with a crayon or marker and pretty much circle each toy in the toy section, between the three of them.

It’s so funny, a few months ago our granddaughters were at our house and they spotted a Walmart advertisement sitting there and quickly grabbed a pen and started circling things they like, just like their parents used to do. It brought back memories of their parents doing that so many years ago. Great memories!

We kept all their Christmas lists over the years and I haven’t done it yet but at some point I would love to find them and read over all the things that meant so much to them.

After my granddaughters went through the slim Walmart advertisement, I gave each one of them a Post-it note and ask them to write one of their favorite toys they hope they got from Santa. After they were finished they were to put it in a little Christmas mailbox that I have. After they left my house, I opened the mailbox and read over each of their lists to see what they hoped for from Santa. Then, on second thought, I said to myself, no Kiki it’s too early but then tonight at 12:43 as I was writing my newspaper article while watching a Hallmark movie (that had Santa and kids with their Wish Lists), ran to my Christmas mailbox and without hesitation I opened to see what my seven sweet granddaughters wrote. I will keep these 2020 Santa’s wish list and one special place at my house and when those beautiful granddaughters become adults, one Christmas I will read them what they wrote one day at Yiayia’s house. Here are a few things they asked for, Stuffed dog that looks and sounds like a real dog and I wish it would snow on Christmas, fuzzy blanket, a real French bulldog, a real bunny, a lot of comfortable leggings, air pods, boots and I wish for snow. Awwww, how sweet! I have no control over making it snow or buying them real pet animals but I’ll be more than happy to buy the stuffed animals, boots, fuzzy blankets and the clothing that they want.

A few weeks ago, when I asked them what they wanted Santa to bring them, I acted really surprised when they told me what they wanted because I had never told them that I had read their notes that they had left in my Christmas mailbox. LOL Tricky grandma (Yiayia), that I am.

One of these years I will reveal to all of them and I hope they will think it was funny what I did.

Below I have recipes for cakes so you can make with your children.

Merry Christmas!

Until next month…


Surprise Package


1 package chocolate cake mix, plus ingredients to make

food coloring

1 16-ounce container vanilla frosting

1 tube white decorator icing

72 chewy fruit squares

colored decors and birthday candles

Spray 24 muffin pan cups with paper baking cups or spray with nonstick cooking spray. Prepare and bake cake mix in prepared muffin cups acccording to package directions. Cool in pans on wire racks 15 minutes. Remove cupcakes to racks; cool completely. If desired, tint frosting with food coloring, adding a few drops at a time until desired color is reached. Spread frosting over cupcakes. Use decorator icing to pipe “ribbons” on fruit squares to resemble wrapped presents. Place 3 candy presents on each cupcake. Decorate with decor and candles if desired.


Sleepover Cake

1 18-ounce package cake mix, plus ingredients to make

1 container white frosting

red food coloring

2 long cream-filled snack cakes

decorative sugar sprinkles

4 marshmallows

red and yellow decorator icing

assorted candies for decoration

4 chocolate peanut butter cups

red, black or brown licorice strips

2 packages bubble gum tape

bear-shaped graham crackers

Preheat oven to 350. Prepare and bake cake mix according to package directions for 13×9 pan. Cool in pan on wire rack 10 minutes. Remove from pan to wire rack; cool completely. Tint frosting with food coloring to desired shade of pink. Place cake on serving platter; frost top and sides with frosting.

Cut snack cakes in half length-wise. Arrange snack cakes cut sides down, evenly on top of frosted cake. Smooth frosting over snack cakes; sprinkle with decorative sugar sprinkles. Flatten marshmallows by pressing down firmly with palm of hand.

Arrange marshmallows at top of snack cakes to create pillows. Use decorating icing and assorted candies to create eyes and lips on peanut butter cups. Add licorice strips for hair, if desired; or use decorating icing to create hair. Place decorated peanut butter cups on marshmallow pillows. Unwind bubble gum tape; arrange across cake at edge of peanut butter cups to form edges of blanket. Arrange second bubble gum tape around base of cake.

Tuck bear-shaped grahams around blanket.


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