Monday, December 11, 2006

Punishment and Reward: A Christmas Story

My parents always sent "Southwest Santa" packages to my family. The girls were eleven and thirteen when the youngest decided to try her skill at peeking.

Packages surrounded the tree. I noticed one package opened and re=taped while adding to the pile. Hmmm, I thought, this is interesting. So I carefully extricated the gift and replaced it with underwear.

Christmas Eve arrived. We loaded up the car and drove to my husband's mother's house as was our tradition. The family gathered in the living room after a wonderful meal of crabs and red sauce, garlic bread and salad.

Packages were handed out. The youngest unwraps a gift, followed by the next until each family member has had a turn. Both my husband and oldest child knew about the "switch". I opened my "Southwest Santa" gift; a sweatshirt. My husband opened his "Southwest Santa" package; a sweatshirt, and my oldest opened hers; a sweatshirt. The youngest put off opening hers (because why should she, she knew what was in it) until it was the final gift of the evening. She unwrapped the gift with great care and said, "Oh, "Southwest Santa"sent me underwear". Her expression said something else, "WHAT?".

The next day she admitted it scared her to see a different gift come out of the package. This is one story we tell each Christmas.

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1 comment:

Tongue in Cheek Antiques said...

Stories that are retold year after year are the way memories are kept alive. I love stories like these.