Dads’ Day at the DeSotos’
By Audrey W.
Joanne DeSoto sat down at the kitchen table, joining her eight-year-old son Chris and six-year-old daughter Jennifer. With Popsicle sticks, paper, paint and glue in front of them, the two were set to complete Fathers’ Day cards and gifts for their dad.
By luck, Roy was on duty at Station 51 the day before the holiday, making this the opportune time to create the special items without him knowing.
Joanne handed a small birdhouse made from Popsicle sticks to Jennifer. “The glue’s dry now if you want to paint it.”
“Okay, Mommy.” The little girl smiled as she picked up a paint brush and dipped it in blue paint. Sticking her tongue out in concentration, she began to apply the color to the house.
Having already finished his gift for his dad, which was a little box made from Popsicle sticks to be used as a nail holder, Chris reached for a piece of white drawing paper and folded it in half.
“I’m gonna put footballs all over mine,” the boy said as he began to draw. “Dad likes footballs.”
“Mine’s prettier,” Jennifer challenged.
Chris looked at the stick-people figures in tutus that his sister had drawn on her card earlier. “That’s girly stuff.”
“Daddy likes ballerinas.”
The boy shook his head. “He just says that ‘cuz you’re learnin’ to dance.”
“Chris!” Joanne scolded when she saw the hurt look on Jen’s face. “Your dad will love both of your cards equally because they’re made by each of you.”
“But she’s the one who said hers was better!”
“Prettier,” Joanne corrected. “And ballerinas are much prettier than footballs, aren’t they?”
“Mommy!” Jennifer whined.
“Chris, now you apologize to your sister.”
“But they’re sti--”
“Apologize,” she repeated firmly.
“Okay. I’m sorry.”
Jennifer sniffled, tears streaming down her cheeks.
“I said I was sorry! Why’re ya still cryin’?”
“Your fingers are crossed!”
Joanne glanced at Chris’s hand. “Christopher DeSoto, uncross those fingers.”
“Man, girls. . .”
“Don’t say too many negative things about them. Someday your best friend will be a girl.”
“Only if she doesn’t draw stupid ballerinas on my cards!”
Joanne sat back and closed her eyes. I think next year I’ll just take them shopping.
Fathers’ day morning, Roy came home from work to a breakfast of bacon, eggs and toast. Chris and Jennifer sat eagerly awaiting their turn to give their dad the cards and presents they made.
“After you eat, the kids have a few surprises for you,” Joanne explained. She winked at the children, who were grinning, their eyes lit with excitement.
Once breakfast was over, Jennifer and Chris led their dad into the livingroom, where their gifts and cards were set up on the coffee table. Still in uniform, Roy took a seat on the couch, the kids on either side of him, and read each card with a smile. He then picked up one gift after another, admiring the efforts of both children.
“Mine is for all those nails on that shelf in the garage,” Chris explained.
“And mine is for you to hang in the tree by the birdfeeder.”
“Which do ya like best?” Chris asked, shooting a smug grin at his sister.
Joanne started to open her mouth to referee, but held back as Roy handled the situation perfectly.
“I like one thing as much as the other, Chris. That goes for the gifts and the cards.” He grinned when Jennifer returned the smug grin to her brother.
“But ballerinas, Dad? Are ya sure?”
Roy nodded. “If life was nothing but ‘guy’ things, it’d get awful boring. Remember, variety is the spice of life.”
Chris screwed up his face and rested his chin in his hands, elbows on his knees. “I always thought it was cinnamon.”
Thanks to Purry for the encouragement!
My daughter and I made cards for our guy for the holiday(which is kind of what inspired this story). Only we didn't fight. When Chels told me her card was going to be better than mine, I think I took it pretty well.<G>
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Happy Fathers' Day!
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