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The Picture Book Buzz

Susanna Hill's 9th Annual Holiday Contest

Every family has its own traditions, its own twists to the holidays. Special foods, timing of opening gifts - Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, or perhaps Epiphany. Things passed down through the generations, things added to a young family, or maybe things created to help blend together two families.

My mom and stepdad started a number of fun traditions for us when they married - such as Christmas Eve soup and Christmas breakfast of sourdough waffles with whipped cream & chocolate sauce. But this one was the most unusual and the one each of us four kids continued with our own families.

First, let me tell you about the contest (Link).

Rules: Write a children’s holiday story (children here defined as age 12 and under) about A Holiday TREAT! Your treat can be any kind of treat – a delectable holiday food specialty or an event or experience that is a treat – sky’s the limit 🙂

Your story may be poetry or prose, silly or serious or sweet, religious or not, based on Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa or whatever you celebrate, but is not to exceed 250 words. Your entry should be posted on your blog by Wednesday December 11 at 11:59 PM EST.

Now, I'll introduce you to this unusual treat that my parents created --


(242 words)

“Everybody ready?” asked Dad. “Then . . . GO!”

Little Bea, Marie, and Ron rushed through the house looking for their stockings.

“Mine!” Bea yanked hers from under the coffee table.

“Good job, honey,” said Dad.

Ten minutes later, Marie found hers stuffed in the toybox.

“Anyone seen mine?” asked Ron.

“Chocwate!” mumbled Bea.

“A horse!” cried Marie.

Ron humpfed and glared around the room. Where’s mine?

"Where have you looked?” asked Dad.

“The couch, coffee table, and bookcase,” said Ron. “I found yours and Mom’s. But I can’t find mine.

"You try the hall closet?” asked Mom.

“Yes,” said Ron. “Why does Santa hide our stockings anyway? He doesn’t do it at my friend’s houses.”

"Hmm, I think it started when your Mom and I married and we all moved to this house.”

“Bet Santa hides them ‘cause we don’t have a fireplace and we lay them on the back of the couch,” said Marie.

“Maybe. Okay . . . if Santa wanted to be super sneaky, what about . . .”

The shoe rack – Nope.

Dryer - Empty.

Ron slowly spun in a circle, where else could Santa hide a stocking?


As he cracked open the lid, a red sparkle caught his eye. A big red bow. “I found it! And look what I got,” he said, waving a model airplane kit.

“You have to admit, it does make Christmas morning exciting,” said Dad.

“Yeah, it’s not so bad,” agreed Ron. When you can find your stocking.

Maria Marshall

 Photograph © A. Marshall

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