Maybelle stepped back and admired her handiwork. Two days of pushing and pulling the branches of her artificial Christmas tree. One entire day spent sorting through dozens of ornament boxes to pick out just the right ones, and another whole day finding the best spot for each bulb. The dancing lights lit her front room. She clapped with glee. This was going to be a perfect holiday for the family.
She woke early the next morning and groggily fussed with her tea kettle. While waiting for the water to boil, she flipped through her recipe cards and pulled out some that Susan and Lloyd might like to help with while they visited. Just the thought of her grandchildren visiting brought a smile to her face.
A knock on the door made her squeal. “They’re here!” She rushed to the door and threw it open.
“Grandma! Grandma!” the kids yelled as they hugged her.
“Morning, Mom,” Vanessa said, bringing in the kids’ bags. She paused in the living room doorway and dropped both the bags and her jaw. “Mom?”
“Um, you put up the Christmas tree?”
Maybelle wrapped her arms around her daughter and smiled. “Doesn’t it look lovely this year?”
“Well, yeah, Mom. It looks great, but…”
“But it’s July Fourth.”