Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Santa's Wonderland (and as close to snow as we'll see around these parts)

About an hour away is a lovely place that opens for just a few short weeks a year called Santa's Wonderland. We discovered it last year and quickly decided that it would definitely become a family tradition! You go in to "Santa's Village" where there's a big bonfire and cute little shops. Texas snow (a.k.a. soap snow) blows down on you and there is usually live entertainment. If your little one pleases they can take a picture with Santa in his cowboy hat (again, definite Texas thing) and then ride on the mechanical bull. There is a huge TV screen where a Christmas Classic is playing and even a petting zoo and pony rides. On a cold night the hot chocolate and kettle corn are to die for. It's just a very happy place. The best part though is the hayride through the Christmas lights. To see this place from the freeway you have no clue what is in store for you. You load up on the wagon and Christmas music fills the air. Your journey begins and for the next 35ish minutes you are surrounded by beautiful scenes and lights galore. It is phenomenal.

last year, not knowing better, we went on a Friday night and ended up waiting in line for about 2 hours before loading on the hayride. Although we loved the place and hayride itself, the way was miserable. This year we learned that if at all possible you go on a weeknight. We went on a Wednesday and had no wait at all. We were told that they after Christmas is even better since they stay open until New Years.

The man driving the hayride (meaning the man pulling the wagon inside the warm cab of his dodge) made the comment that he watched Chase through the whole thing in the mirror and loved how excited he was. I'm telling you, a two year old certainly makes this time of year magical.

**Edited to say that we did make a 2nd trip after Christmas and it was defintely a lot less crowded (we even got to park in the actual parking lot)! Much colder too if you can't tell. The first time we were in light shirts, the next time all bundled up! Fun!!!**