We'd been in our new house for three weeks before we were startled one afternoon by blaring sirens and the loud, blatting honks of the Fire Chief's jeep. Worried because they sounded so close, we looked out the windows and saw the trucks coming to a slow stop IN FRONT OF OUR HOUSE. Hearts pounding, we sniffed the air and looked for the children. Then we noticed the neighbors' kids running toward Santa, perched atop the Ladder Truck!
Four years later, our kids' inner clocks are now set to listen for the sirens on the Saturday before Christmas. They keep shoes by the door, ready to spring out whenever Santa might drive by. Lars heard his the sirens first this year and everyone jumped into shoes while I grabbed the camera. It's fun to see all our neighbors at once! We got to meet Minnie, the new puppy across the street and catch up with everyone's holiday plans. We'd been standing outside long enough to be officially chilly and were starting to wonder if Santa and his chauffeurs had been called to duty when we saw them coming! Having Santa come by our house is SO much better than suffering the mall! We might not get tree ornament style pictures out of it, but the home-based memories of seeing Santa with all the kids' friends on the block will survive, good photos or no.