Guess what? There really is a Santa Claus whose face glows with loving good cheer and whose blue eyes actually twinkle. So he doesn’t blow his cover, he calls himself Jim, when he is not suited up.
Every year I take my two grandchildren to the local department store to get their pictures taken with Santa. My granddaughter stutters, so she is reluctant to speak to strangers. Last year’s Santa was an impatient most unjolly man, who should have been cast as Scrooge.
So Sherry, a darling moppet of five, refused to go this year. When I heard her adament pronouncement, I mentally lunged at last year’s Santa swinging Christmas Past’s heavy chains, flames flaring out my nostrils.
Finally the thought of her six old brother, Avery, experiencing a Christmas outing which traditionally includes sundaes at the Ghirardelli’s pushed her over the precipice.
Calling the store I found out they had hired a different Santa. I strategized the fear factor would be minimized, if Sherry didn’t have to wait for a long time. So on the appointed day we were second in line.
Surprisingly instead of a young female elf in a short skirt flashing shapely legs, Santa’s assistant was Mrs. Claus. No doubt the Dads waiting in line would be disappointed. Briefly I wondered why the elf was never a hot young hunk.
When it was Sherry’s turn, my heart was thumping so wildly, I should have been wearing my sports bra. Mrs. Claus noticing Sherry’s hesitation put her arm around her shoulders and whispered something in her ear. Sherry responded with a knowing smile and readily climbed on to Santa’s lap.
I edged closer to hear. Did you know Santa has a soft southern drawl? I swear I saw puffs of light going off like old fashion camera flash bulbs all around them during the encounter. When Sherry got off Santa’s lap, her face was once again infused with the magic of Christmas.
Yes, I cried a few tears. I was so grateful to Mr. and Mrs. Claus that I called the store to deliver them an invitation for dinner. Tell me Mama Goose, what do you serve Santa Claus whose off season name is Jim? Virginia
There is nothing better than a story with a happy ending. This one was perfect. I share your joy. Now what can we cook up for this auspicious couple. I’m going to swim upstream with this suggestion, Yum Yum Meat Loaf.
Why? In addition to his heavy Christmas schedule, Santa spends a lot of time on the road lining up material suppliers, checking out what is new in the toy world and keeping tabs on the naughty and nice rosters. Those meals on the road can build a terrific yearning for a down home comfort meal. But jazz up the meal with an elegant table setting. Select a nice bottle or two or three of red wine to counteract all the Xmas milk. Oh definitely NO cookies.
- 1 pound LEAN GROUND BEEF
- ½ pound GROUND PORK
- 1 cup YELLOW ONION, chopped small
- ½ cup RED PEPPER, chopped small
- ¼ cup CELERY, chopped small
- 1 Egg, lightly beaten
- 1 teaspoon SALT
- ½ teaspoon GROUND PEPPER
- 2 cloves FRESH GARLIC, chopped
- ½ teaspoon DRIED OREGANO
- 1 15 oz can ITALIAN STEWED TOMATOES
- ¼ cup DRIED PARMESAN CHEESE
- ½ cup OATMEAL
- ) Mix ground beef, pork, salt, oregano, pepper & garlic
- ) Add onion, celery, red pepper, egg, parmesan cheese, oatmeal and blend until all ingredients are well combined
- ) Shape into a loaf and put in 1½ to 2 quart baking dish
- ) Pour Italian stewed tomatoes over the top
- ) Bake uncovered at 375 degrees F for 1 hour or until center tests done
- ) Serves 4 to 6