Today’s writing prompt, The Perfect Christmas Tree, is the eighth prompt of the TWELVE DAYS OF CHRISTMAS PROMPTS on the Daily Drafts and Dialogues blog this year. Keep reading to see the full prompt.

Today’s Writing Prompt: The Perfect Christmas Tree

Write a scene in which two or more characters are out looking for the perfect Christmas tree together when something unexpected happens.

If you complete this writing prompt, share your draft by tagging #DailyDraftsAndDialogues and @kecreighton on Medium, WordPress, or Facebook.

One comment

  1. Dad took me, my little sister, and our two older brothers for the annual Christmas tree selection.. We met the Johnson family, who ran the local pine tree farm outside of town. The trip took over an hour, but the mountain scenery and the hot chocolate with pastries was worth the trip. However, the treats only came after Dad and my brothers had chosen and hauled the tree of our choice back to the truck. Thus, the incentive was to not tarry too long!
    Mom decided to stay home, telling me and my 10-year-old sister it was to get dinner ready. She didn’t know I had been reading the medical bills from the Cancer Treatment Center. Since I was in 10th grade, I had taken the family living skills class, and budgeting was a huge part of it. The numbers from the bills made it clear that Mom’s treatment was far beyond our budget!
    Tom and Frank told Dad that if he chose the tree, they could handle it themselves. Dad grinned, so proud of his sons! Tom was in his junior year at State, and Frank was in his first year at the local community college. Both had earned scholarships, Tom in basketball, and Frank for academics.
    I took Susan’s hand and led her back to the Johnson family home, following Dad and my brothers. The look in Dad’s eyes belied his smile. Although I could tell he was enjoying being with his children, his eyes held sadness and concern. I was sure I was the only child of his who was aware of the cancer mother had contracted.
    The tree was a beautiful Douglas fir, eight feet tall. I was amazed at Frank and Tom, hefting it so easily, and toting it back to the truck. Dad picked Susan up on his shoulders, and I took his hand, trying to reassure him that everything would be alright.
    After Frank and Tom tied down the tree, we all sat in the Johnson family living room, and had the best pastries and hot chocolate ever! Mrs. Johnson was the perfect hostess, and Mr. Johnson took Dad into the next room to speak with him privately. This piqued my curiosity, but I had learned not to be too nosy before Christmas!
    Mrs. Johnson slipped me an envelope, making me promise to not open it until Christmas Eve, and only for me and my parents. I was surprised, but her hugs reassured me that he heart was in the right place, Mr. Johnson came back into living room, and Dad seemed happier.
    The trip home was quiet, except for Susan, who was so excited to tell Dad her Christmas wish list! I took delight in hearing that she still believed in Santa. I knew she would outgrow this very soon, but Christmas was often seen in the faith of the children. The only other person outside of the family to know of Mom’s condition that I knew of was my school counselor, Mr. Tripp. He almost broke out in tears as I told him of my finding the bills and how they had ran sky high over the past year.
    Mr. Tripp told me that if it was okay, he would try to raise as much help as he could for my parents. I asked him to keep it anonymous, and he agreed, stating that a true gift was a silent gift!
    I smiled, and thanked him for his help, promising to see him at the Midnight Mass. He reassured me that even the darkest circumstances can be made easier with a little faith.
    As we decorated the tree, Mom was in the kitchen preparing dinner. Dad had spent most of the time in his study, looking over some paperwork Mr. Johnson had given him. I knew Dad had been in lumber work for about 10 years before he and Mom got married. However, all those late hours in his woodshop seemed to have dropped to almost nothing over the last year.
    As we all bedded down for the night, I could hear the noise of the once quiet woodshop come to life. We were still 10 days from Christmas, and Dad was once again working late into the night, then leaving early for the plant. This went on until Christmas Eve, and I had seen Dad taking the truck out late, and returning just in time for breakfast every night.
    Midnight mass was this evening, and Susan was bouncing around all day, trying to help Mom and contain her excitement. I decided to hold the envelope from Mrs. Johnson until after dinner, knowing that Dad may be working in the woodshop until time to leave for Midnight Mass. I received a request from the parish to meet with Mr. Tripp and the parish priest about 30 minutes prior to the service, and to bring only my brothers and sister. This Christmas held the promise of quite a few surprises!
    Dinner was incredible, as Mother had been preparing it since lunch. Frank and Tom had taken the truck out for another delivery that afternoon, and Dad had been working feverishly all afternoon. When Frank and Tom returned just before dinner, I watched as they hugged Dad in the driveway. Mom finished clearing the table, and told everyone to try and nap a little before mass.
    I asked Mom and Dad to step into the study with me, and they agreed. Susan went to bed, and Frank and Tom did the dishes and we gathered in the study. I showed the envelope to Mom and Dad, explaining the request from Mrs. Johnson. The Christmas card held a document, stating that the Cancer Treatment had chosen to adopt our family, and half of the treatment bills were forgiven!
    Mom and Dad cried with joy, and Dad pulled out a contract from Mr. Johnson. This explained his fervor in the woodshop, since it was a contract for 15 pieces of furniture to be filled by Christmas Eve. This was why he and my brothers were so excited earlier. The final payment from Mr. Johnson was sent home with them, and it took care of about 1/4 of the cancer bills!
    I mentioned the request to meet with the parish priest and Mr. Tripp, and my parents said that this was fine. They straightened up, and got ready for mass. We arrived 45 minutes early, and I and my siblings met in the priest’s office for about 20 minutes, When we came out, Susan was bouncing with anticipation.
    After the sermon, the priest asked me to play the organ, Susan the flute, and my brothers to sing “O Holy Night”. The special offering was taken for mother’s bills, and Mr. Tripp concluded the service by stating that the teachers of the high school had raised enough to pay off the remainder of the bills! Mom broke out in tears, and Dad stood and humbly thanked the entire congregation. Christmas was never as great as this one, and though the years saw us each go our separate ways, we always treasured this Christmas as the most blessed one our family ever had!

Comments are closed.