Samuel Spencer, 1, signs the word 'help' in American Sign Language while sitting on Santa's lap at a mall in Provo, Utah, in 2005. Samuel's mother, Kerry Spencer, shares the photo each year around Christmas.
Crystal Bonvillian, Cox Media Group National Content Desk
Kerry Spencer has an annual Christmas tradition that brings a smile to the faces of her family members, and this year, the public is getting in on the laughs.
Spencer, of Parkton, Maryland, every year shares a photo of her son, Samuel, sitting on Santa’s lap at a mall in Provo, Utah. What’s unique about Samuel’s visit with Santa 12 years ago is that he wasn’t crying, and he wasn’t telling the big guy what he wanted for Christmas.
In the photo, a very authentic-looking Santa smiles for the camera while a solemn-looking, 1-year-old Samuel averts his eyes. His chubby little toddler hands are making the American Sign Language (ASL) sign for “help,” or as close to it as he can get.
Mashable reported that Spencer, whose Facebook profile states that she is a faculty member at Stevenson University, taught both of her children ASL.
“We taught both our kids baby sign (language) because they can sign before they talk and it is so very useful to be able to communicate with your baby,” Spencer said.
Spencer said she shares the photo each year on Facebook, but this year, her friend, author Mette Harrison, asked her to tweet it so she could retweet it to her own followers.
As of Monday morning, the tweet had more than 25,000 likes and had been shared close to 6,700 times.