Reluctant Hero – Christmas Edition

Hello friends!

As promised, here is a Christmas story for you all, starring Ryan. If you haven’t met him before, go check out his previous adventures here for a little background on this story. (Although it should still make sense even if you haven’t read the previous stories.:))

This is just a goofy little piece, and I hope it’ll bring a smile to your face!😊

“Ryan! We’re going to build a gingerbread house with graham crackers and frosting and stuff!”

Cameron grabs my left hand and drags me through the doorway into the living room. “Come on! Mommy has everything ready in the kitchen!” He stares up at me, cocking his head. “Oh, yeah, Mommy told me to take your coat.”

I shrug it off and hand it to the five-year-old. He throws it over his shoulders like a cape and swoops into the kitchen screaming the Batman theme song. I shiver and take a deep breath, squeezing sweaty palms into fists.

I can do this.

After all, last time wasn’t that bad. The two and a half hours of babysitting I did for the Winters’ ended in three sleeping children, only one broken dish, and minimal scratches. I’m getting this babysitting thing down.

It’s the gingerbread house that scares me.

After waving goodbye to Mrs. Winters (once I confirm with her three times that she’ll be gone for only two hours), Cameron and Holly spin away from the front window and race for the kitchen table. I charge after them, socks skidding on the hardwood, remembering the multiple bowls of candy sitting within perfect toddler reach.

“Hey, hold up!”

Cameron bounces up and down, gripping the edge of the table. “Let’s make the best. Gingerbread house. EVER!” His scream turns into a roar, and I grimace.

“I want mine to have lots of gumdrops,” Holly mumbles, pulling her thumb out of her mouth long enough to grab a gumdrop from the nearest bowl.

“Hey, wait, first we have to build the house!” I shove the bowl out of reach and grab the box of graham crackers.

Miraculously I manage to construct one small house out of the graham crackers without their curious fingers poking it into a heap… although by the time we’re ready to decorate it, a few of our ornaments have disappeared behind two little pairs of red-stained lips.

“Dude, I’m serious, you have to stop eating the candy. You won’t be hungry for supper.” I wrestle a peppermint candy from Cameron’s sticky palm.

He shrugs. “I don’t care. We’re having chicken noodle soup for supper.” The gag that follows tells me that the aforementioned soup is not a favorite.

“Well, anyway, if you keep eating everything, we won’t have anything to decorate the house with.” I squirt a bunch of icing onto the roof of the house. “Okay, what do you guys want to put on the roof?”

“Gumdrops!” Holly yells.

“No, peppermints!” Cameron roars in her face, and I cover my ears.

“Hey, how about both?” I pull them away from each other and hand each one a bowl of their preferred candy.

“Jake’s screaming,” Holly says, poking her first gumdrop onto the roof.

“I’ll get him,” I say, jumping up from the table. “Don’t eat any more candy while I’m gone.”

It takes me thirty seconds to dash to the nursery, scoop up the butterball, and lug him back to the kitchen.

It took Cameron and Holly thirty seconds to topple our graham cracker structure and start a highly-competitive screaming competition.

I glance at my watch.

One hour and forty-five minutes to go.

Photo by Randalyn Hill on Unsplash

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