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I elbowed Bruce in the ribs. “Quick. We don’t have much time!”
I rushed to the kitchen, retrieved from its hiding spot the Barbie: Swan Lake movie the dratted Great Pumpkin was supposed to leave, and handed it to Bruce, who stuffed it under his shirt.
I made sure the kids were still in their rooms as Bruce quietly opened the front door.
By the time the girls had arrived at the front landing, Bruce was sitting innocently on the couch. I ushered them outside, and heard a great whoop of joy as Geneva and Paris came dashing in with their prize.
“He came!” Geneva bellowed.
Paris chanted: “Barbie Swan Lake! Barbie Swan Lake! Barbie Swan Lake!”
They settled in front of the TV, and Bruce and I padded into the kitchen to start breakfast.
“That was close,” said Bruce.
“Too close,” I replied.
And thus, a near disaster was averted and the Great Pumpkin lived to make another appearance.
But did I learn from my mistake? Not quite. One day I accidentally “locked out” the tooth fairy. It’s a good thing I think fast on my feet.
Michelle Houlden is a journalist and illustrator who lives in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.