me: oh lia, santa's here in the mall. do you wanna go
malia: YES!!! can i take a picture with him? please?
me: sorry, not today. your brother's not here. besides, it's kinda
malia: aww, but i want to. and you have to pay, because you have to help the poor people in the north pole.
me: what?! what makes you think there are poor people in the north
malia: because it's cold.
me: okay, santa sees you, wave and say hi.
my sister wondered why i had to tell her it was expensive to take a picture with santa. well, the word expensive has been in both my kids vocabulary since they were 2 years old. they need to know we can't afford to do everything. i don't have a lot of money. apparently the people in the north pole don't either.
i'll just have to wait to tell her that people don't live in the north pole.