Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Above And Beyond

Don't forget! I have two different $200 gift card giveaways going on yet
here and here. Go. Play. Win.


When Mister Man was a baby, he received this Advent tree for Christmas. At the time, we thought this was not the best present for a two month old, so we put it away for a couple of years.

For the last three or four years, though, this has been the highlight of the wee ones' Christmas anticipation. They can't wait for me to get it out each year. The first thing they do every morning is to run downstairs to put the next number on the tree. They take the numbers off the tree and play with them. Mister Man reads and now knows all the poems on each of the ornaments that has a poem. In short, they big puffy heart this tree.

Until this weekend....

Last Wednesday, I had my co-op Christmas party and gift exchange at my house. Since the numbers were so neatly arranged on the foyer table (thank you, Mister Man) a couple of my guests assumed I was using the numbers to see who went first, etc in the Yankee gift exchange. oooo, brilliant idea!

Everyone loved the fun little numbered ornaments. I loved not having to write out twenty-two numbers on little slips of paper. As soon as each person went, they put their number into a special bag, and at the end of the night, I carefully rearranged all the ornaments to be exactly where they were pre-party.

On Sunday, I had another Christmas party and another gift exchange at a friend's house. I decided to be cute and bring my fancy numbers along.

Unfortunately, when I got home, I realized that number fifteen was missing. I checked and rechecked to no avail. I called a friend I knew to be still at the party cleaning up, but it was not at the house.

Our assumption was the someone had accidentally put it in their pocket or into the gift bag instead of back into the special bag I'd brought. Now the fun became trying to remember who was number fifteen. I dialed for dollars but came up empty. Finally, one woman thought she might have remembered who had number fifteen.

Given the hour, I decided to simply email her rather than wake up her entire house. By this point, it was Monday night -- the 14th -- and I knew there would be disaster in my house come yesterday morning. And there was. There was crying and wailing and gnashing of teeth about the missing fifteen. Well, there was until Mister Man had the idea of just putting up number sixteen intead. Ah-ha!

Last night, I got home from work late. I arrived to a mysterious bag sitting in my doorway and twelve emails going back and forth trying to track down the missing ornament. Offers to search through garbage were handed out. My friend who did have number fifteen offered to buy us a whole new tree. I was overwhelmed by how far people would go for a little number!

I was hoping that we could easily find the number, but if not then we'd deal with it. We'd fake a number of we'd just deal with the fact that we no longer had number fifteen.

My friend wasn't going to let that happen, however. She felt so guilty about misplacing the number fifteen -- and truly, we don't know that it was her. Someone else may have moved or taken the fifteen after she put it in the bag.

So inside the bag she left unsolicited in my doorway last night was a replacement ornament that she had made, and two presents for the wee ones. She actually made a new felt ornament to go on our tree when she hadn't found it within two hours, then drove to my house to drop it off.


And this morning after Mister Man read the apology letter she left him? He totally forgave her and understood. But that new ornament?

Look, Little Miss! Look! We have a brand new ornament for our tree. And it's a SNOWball!

First of all, I can't believe she made that. I can't even come close to cutting an actual circle, let alone two, and forget painting a recognizable number on it and making a border. It looks great, doesn't it?

It's now happily ensconced on our tree, and the world is once again right. In fact, it's more than right. Thank you, L. Thank you so much for going above and beyond -- we're really grateful!

I hope each and every one of you has friends who would do something like that. Talk about finding a way to put some joy into everyone's hearts.


septembermom December 16, 2009 at 11:18 AM  

That's a beautifully heartwarming story. There's the true spirit of Christmas in action. We should all strive to spread some joy too.

Unknown December 16, 2009 at 11:25 AM  

I feel all warm and fuzzy inside now :) If only everything could have a happy ending.

Hyacynth December 16, 2009 at 4:23 PM  

That was really, really nice of her. And now you have a really awesome story to tell about you tree and use it to teach more lessons than just about Advent. :)

Tara R. December 16, 2009 at 8:02 PM  

Going above and beyond. This was a very heartwarming story.

Nicole December 16, 2009 at 9:19 PM  

What a nice story:)

Claudya Martinez December 17, 2009 at 12:19 AM  

Aww, you are surrounded by lovely people.

Jane In The Jungle December 17, 2009 at 7:48 AM  

That is a great story and will be an even better memory!
Each of the kids has an advent calender here, in fact my oldest uses the one my family had going up. And you're right, first thing is to change the number...and the best thing is that they continue to do it no matter how old they get!

Michelle December 17, 2009 at 8:18 PM  

Kelly - It really is great, isn't it? Now I need to find a way to pay it forward.

Megryansmom - Me, too :) I'm good with this ending for now though.

Hyacynth - Wasn't it? I hadn't thought of using it as a lesson to teach, but it's so perfect, isn't it?

Tara - Gotta love it, but not nearly enough people do it.

Nicole - Thanks! I'm glad I had it to share.

Unknown Mami - Aren't I? I love knowing that I have the good people near me.

Jane - I love hearing that they keep the enjoyment of the Advent calendar alive. I can only hope the wee ones do,too!

Angela December 23, 2009 at 5:09 PM  

This is so cute! What an awesome friend!

Michelle December 27, 2009 at 9:53 PM  

Angela - Absolutely! And ummm shhhh but that one is now lost somehow. As is #2. We know that's a gingerbread man though. And we're still looking. *sigh*

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