“Saying Good-Bye,” Friend, Dec. 1990, 14–15
At Christmastime Cynthia, Richard, Gerald, Mom, and Dad went to Grandma and Grandpa’s house. The children helped set up the stable like the one where Baby Jesus was born, sang Christmas carols, and opened presents.
A few days after Christmas, Dad said, “It’s time to go home.”
Grandpa and Grandma looked sad.
“Mommy,” Cynthia said, “why are Grandma and Grandpa so sad?”
“Because they will miss us when we go home.”
Cynthia went to find Grandma, who was helping Gerald pack his clothes.
“Grandma,” Cynthia said, “will you be happy if I leave some of my toys? You can play with them till we come back.”
“Thank you, honey,” said Grandma. “I will miss you, not your toys.” She gave Cynthia a big hug.
Cynthia wondered how she could help Grandma and Grandpa be happy. Suddenly she remembered how happy Dad was when Mom put notes in his lunch sack. She ran and whispered to Gerald and Richard and gave them each some pieces of paper. Richard sat on the floor and wrote and wrote and wrote. Gerald drew pictures because he was too little to write.
“Mommy,” said Cynthia, “how do you spell love?”
“L-o-v-e,” Mom told her.
When Cynthia finished writing, she tiptoed into the living room. She hid one of her notes on Grandpa’s chair. She put another note in the piano bench. She even put two in Grandma’s slippers under the couch. Then she tiptoed quietly out.
Richard waited in the hall until Grandpa left the kitchen. Then he scurried in and put one note in the cracker box, one on top of the forks, and one in an apron pocket. He also put notes in the refrigerator and the pantry.
Meanwhile, Gerald was in Grandma and Grandpa’s bedroom. He put all his picture-notes under their pillows for them to find when they went to bed.
Soon Dad and Mom were bundling them into their coats. “Kiss Grandma and Grandpa good-bye and get in the car!” said Dad.
Grandpa kept saying, “I’m going to miss all of you. I’m really going to miss you!” He looked like he was already missing them, and they hadn’t even gone yet!
Grandma kissed all the kids and Mom and Dad too. “Remember to write me,” she told them.
Cynthia, Richard, and Gerald started to giggle.
“What’s so funny?” asked Grandma.
“You’ll see,” Cynthia told her, grinning from ear to ear. “We left love notes for you all over the house.”