He'd done Father Christmas before with the children around, but back then, Monkey was scared of him and Missy Woo was still a baby. Daddy reported back afterwards that if either of them twigged who he was, it was Missy Woo - she may have been under 6 months but he saw the recognition in her eyes as she looked at his face.
Queueing up, Missy Woo was not keen to go in - she was having her phase of being scared of Father Christmas. Monkey just wanted his present!
Eventually, we went in. Neither were keen to sit on his knee, but both stood there transfixed as he spoke to them, bringing up little details so that they knew that Father Christmas was watching them all the time. After a couple of minutes of chat, they took their presents, said their good byes and walked out of what was actually the Y3 classroom temporarily converted to Santa's pad.
We walked out of the door in silence. And then it happened. Missy Woo turned to me, took my hand and as we passed the queue waiting their turn to be called into the inner sanctum, said in the clearest voice possible:
"Mummy, that Father Christmas sounded just like Daddy."
Cue a few sniggers from those that knew who we were, me stifling a laugh and trying to maintain a straight face whilst shepherding the children away before she said anything else to the assembled throng.
Thankfully, that was largely that. Monkey never said anything and I still, to this day, don't know if it is because he didn't notice the same or he is just in denial. Missy Woo made one further reference to it the following day when she told Daddy that Father Christmas sounded like him. Having been briefed by me, he managed to come up with a suitable brush off and it was never mentioned it again.
Tonight is once again the Christmas fair at school. And yes, once again, Daddy is Father Christmas. He likes doing it, he's good at it and the school ask him to do it. I am not really sure what to expect this time. I'm hoping Daddy can disguise his voice a bit better this time, because I love their innocence. I love that they have a sense of wonder at the magical things about Christmas. OK, they are fabrications but it makes Christmas special for them. In the meantime, I have to think up a suitable and plausible explanation if either of them - especially Missy Woo, there are no flies on her - manages to out him completely.
Maybe by this time tomorrow, Santa won't be quite so secret after all. Wish me luck!