Christmas glee vs. laid-off living

My husband and I made a promise about Christmas this year. You know the kind of promise husbands and wives make. The kind when they swear that this year they’ll keep the promise and not buy each other any gifts? That’s the promise we made. We were serious. We had good reason not to go crazy with the Christmas “stuff,” what with the laid-off living and all (meant to be said in the tone my grandmother would say it.) 

Last week, two rather conspicuous gifts appeared under our tree. Both marked “Jan.” I had this hope that I knew what they were, but I was literally afraid to say what it was I was hoping for. I knew the hope was unreasonable and ridiculous. Why would I pick this Christmas to really hope for a MacBook? But I couldn’t help myself. Every time anyone asked what I wanted for Christmas, I hedged. I wouldn’t allow myself to say the words aloud.

So, come Christmas morning, the girls started bringing boxes over for me to open. The first one was the most perfect wicker basket for my bike. It was better than I could have imagined. It has a handle and can be used on and off the bike. Then the second gift came. I opened it and found a super-cool neoprene laptop case with Mac Office inside. I was ready to sing and dance. Julio said, “I guess you should have opened the other one first.” It was the first time since Santa brought me a white 10-speed English Racer when i was 8 that I got exactly what I wanted and hoped for for Christmas. It was perfect. Julio rationalized the extravagance by saying that I use the MacBook for my freelance work. Now I’ve got to get busy getting some more assignments on the horizon.

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