The hat in question is the delightful and colourful jester's hat that Dad has been wearing in public for at least three years, usually around Christmas time.
When questioned about the hat just before leaving the house to get this year's Christmas tree, Dad reminded both kids to get their own santa hats. They dutifully complied, but still Dad's hat seemed to be a problem.
However, Dad had some good points in support of the hat: For example, at a previous year's Santa Claus parade, the mayor of Barrie, while riding by in the parade, specifically called our "Nice hat!" And another time, a woman who had commented "what a wonderful hat!" followed very closely for a block while examining the hat from all sides to figure out how to make them herself. What more can be said?
Once the Christmas tree was secured, Kristin didn't seem to have a problem being seen with her father in the funny hat, as the two of them took the tree to the vehicle. Perhaps that was better than going with Mom and Jakob to Santa's house and risking what happened last year when she was forced onto Santa's knee by Mrs. Claus.