Christmas Without Mommy

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Christmas Without Mommy

“How many days are left until Christmas?” asked Bo the Penguin excitedly as he dashed downstairs to the kitchen. Daddy Penguin grinned and pointed to a big blue “x” on the calendar hanging next to the stove. 

“Not long now! Vacation starts in a week and then only three more sleeps,” said Daddy Penguin. Bo understood that it wasn’t long before Christmas. 

“Come on, let’s make some ornaments for the Christmas tree and check the lights so that nothing goes wrong at Christmas!” suggested Daddy Penguin.

Santa Claus

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The two sat down at the kitchen table and began cutting out beautiful fir trees from green construction paper. Bo liked stars the best. He made a big yellow star to decorate the top of the fir tree like he did every year. 

Just as they were about to start untangling the old string of lights, they heard the front door open. 

Mommy Penguin came in from work and greeted Bo and Daddy with long hugs. “Well, these look great. I guess we don’t have to worry about Christmas tree decorations this year!”

Mommy Penguin had a bag full of groceries that she put on the kitchen table and started unpacking. Bo watched curiously as she pulled flour, milk, sugar, and various nuts out of the bag in addition to some fresh fish for dinner. 

Mommy Penguin saw Bo’s eager looks. “I bought all these ingredients so we can bake lots of cookies tomorrow—enough to last at least until after Christmas.”

Mommy joined them at the kitchen table. Bo thought she looked a little worried. 

Mommy worked at the hospital and took care of a lot of patients. Sometimes she came home exhausted and needed time to rest. She also had to work some nights. When that happened, Bo usually didn’t see her until the afternoon when he was back from kindergarten. 

“This year, unfortunately, I have to work on Christmas Eve,” Bo’s mom said. “Right now, many of my colleagues are sick, so I will have to fill in. It will be just the two of you for Christmas this year.”

Mom and Dad smiled confidently at each other to reassure Bo. 

“I think that’s really dumb!” said Bo. He couldn’t imagine Christmas without Mom. “Why you of all people? Surely someone else can work on Christmas!” 

Bo started to cry. What would it be like if Mom wasn’t there at Christmas? It was out of the question! 

Mommy Penguin lovingly took her son in her arms. “Even on holidays, people can get sick and then they need help from doctors and nurses,” she explained. Bo still thought it was silly and unfair. 

“But why did it have to be on Christmas Eve?” he thought.

Here you can find more Christmas stories for kids and adults.

The next day Bo went to kindergarten still feeling sad. He told his friends that his mom had to work on Christmas. All the children listened intently and told Bo that they admired his mommy for helping other families on Christmas and saving lives.

“You have a real hero for a mommy!” said Edwin the Arctic Fox. “My dad works for the fire department and had to work on Christmas last year, too. He prevented the village museum from burning down when a candle fell over and started a fire.”

Lilly the Snowy Owl also shared that her dad sometimes worked on Christmas as a train driver. “He keeps the trains running so that other families can visit each other at Christmas.”

When George the Snow Bunny told Bo that his mom also has to work every now and then on Christmas because she takes in the goods at the grocery store and restocks the shelves, Bo realized that it’s not that rare for a parent to have to work on Christmas. 

After hearing about all the other kids’ families, Bo realized he was really proud that his mom had such an important job. He wanted to tell her right away. 

When Bo walked in the door that afternoon, he saw Mom standing in the kitchen with a flour-stained apron. She was rolling out some delicious cookie dough. 

“Mom!” exclaimed Bo. “I’m so proud of you for saving lives at Christmas! The other kids told me today that many parents have to work on Christmas so that other families can spend the holidays together.”

Mommy Penguin was quite surprised. She gave her son a big hug and said, “Next year we’ll all celebrate together again!”

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