It's that time of year again! I almost chose not to participate, but, I foraged ahead, despite feelings of uncreativity, and joined others for:
SUSANNA HILL'S 4TH ANNUAL HOLIDAY CONTEST!!!
The Contest: Write a children's story (children here defined as approximately age 12 and under) in which wild weather impacts the holidays! Your story may be poetry or prose, silly or serious or sweet, religious or not, based on Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa or whatever you celebrate, but is not to exceed 350 words (I know! So much freedom after the Halloweensie Contest :)) (It can be as short as you like, but no more than 350! Title not included in word count.) Any kind of weather will do: sun, rain, sleet, heatwave, blizzard, tsunami, monsoon, hurricane, hail, tornado, etc! Weather may be atypical for your setting (rain in Maine, frost in Florida), it may be extreme (blizzard instead of regular snow, drought instead of lush greenery), or it may be unheard of (spring flowers in Antarctica, snow in the Sahara, bathing suit weather at the North Pole), but whatever you choose, make us feel the impact on the holidays! The wild weather may be a hindrance, a wish-come-true, a threat, a pleasant surprise, etc. The field is wide open! Have fun! The wilder and wackier the better! No illustration notes please. (And yes, if you feel compelled to submit more than one entry you may, just remember you're competing against yourself!)
Since I cannot write a holiday story without mentioning the Reason for the Season, here is my attempt at 342 words:
THE UNEXPECTED GIFTS
The house awoke early. It was Christmas morning! The snow outside was gently falling. The family gathered to open gifts under the glistening gold and silver tree. Suddenly the wind began to howl. It raced around and around the house until it forced itself though a crack in the door. In it came, swirling around the Christmas tree.
The little family pressed close together. They watched in amazement as the gifts began to rise and dance around the tree. Around and around they went in all their bright and dapper wrapping. Then, just as mysteriously as it came in, the wind ceased its roaring, and became a gentle breeze. As obedient children, the packages landed together under the tree once more.
The wind blew back out the window, and into the morning, as quickly as it entered.
"What was that?" asked Mother.
"Amazing" noted Daddy.
"Whee. . .what fun!" said brother Donald.
"Oh, no!" said sister Wendy. "The tags are gone. They have blown away!"
"It's a muddle," said Sarah, "but what an adventure!"
The family each took a gift from the pile, and opened it.
"This shirt is TOO big," said Donald.
"These socks are TOO small" said Daddy.
"But this scarf is JUST right!" said Mother.
After much laughter and joy, the family read the story of the first Christmas.
"There were plenty of surprises on that night long ago, too," said Daddy.
Sarah agreed. "The shepherds were surprised to see Angels in the starry sky over Bethlehem."
"And the wise men were surprised to find the Baby Jesus in a stable instead of a big fancy palace" added Donald.
"And Mary was surprised at the Wise Men's gifts. Gold, for a king, frankincense for a priest, and myrrh for a prophet." said Mother.
"Those are grownup gifts" said Wendy.
"But Jesus used them later," reminded Sarah.
"Maybe Donald will use Daddy's shirt when he gets bigger", said Wendy.
There was joy all around that Christmas morning. They would never forget the day the wind mixed-up their gifts!