David’s Gift

My two younger brothers had plotted the night before to sneak downstairs on Christmas morning.

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Christmas Eve – 1975 – Right:  Keith (7), Tommy (12), David (10), Danny (5), Annie (14)

One Christmas when my brother, David, was about ten, he and another brother, Keith, slipped downstairs early in the morning to peek at what Santa had left under the tree. That year, our friendly elf started providing little red Santa bags under the tree for each child. Each pretty bag had a red ribbon that tightly cinched the sacks, and each pouch had our names on them too. With five kiddos in the house, I believe our jolly friend tried to find a painless way to disguise our gifts.

My two younger brothers had plotted the night before to sneak downstairs on Christmas morning.  Early that morning, the two met in the upstairs hallway before heading to the living room.  Once on the main floor, they turned on the Christmas tree lights and began checking each bag to see what each sibling received from Santa.

Now, our youngest brother, Danny, had put in a last-minute gift request from Santa; he decided that he wanted the same Fisher-Price toy that David had requested.  However, he missed the “deadline,” so he did not receive his gift.  When David noticed that Danny didn’t obtain the favored prize, David took out his present and slipped it into Danny’s bag. Then the two little detectives went back upstairs and waited for our parents to give the signal that we could officially begin our Christmas morning.

While my parents sat on the couch and sipped their morning coffee, they watched their children eagerly open their Santa sacks.  Out of the corner of her eye, my mom noticed that Danny had an extra gift, and she realized that David was short one gift.  She quietly called David over and told him that she thought Santa made a mistake, and she would correct this error.  David looked up at his mama and smiled.  He whispered, “Santa did make a mistake; he forgot that Danny wanted that present too.  He is little, and I didn’t want him to get his feelings hurt, so I gave him mine.”

Mama pulled her son in for a hug and told him that she was proud of him.  She had tears in her eyes and didn’t want to cry in front of everyone, so she wandered into the kitchen.  I followed her and smiled at my mother, for I knew she was amazed at her son’s generous heart.  Quietly, we worked together making orange rolls for breakfast, a Christmas family tradition.   And yes, that year, David received the last one with all the extra frosting!



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