Mason kisses his mom every morning. He kisses the picture of Dad, in full uniform, hugging Mason goodbye. Some days it makes him smile. Some days it makes him sad.
“When does Daddy come home? It feels like it’s been forever.”
“Soon. He’ll be back on March 5,” Mom replies.
“We need to make a countdown calendar.”
Mason decorates March 5th with the word HOME in red letters. Mom writes the number one on March 4. Counting together, writing numbers until they reach the calendar square for today.
“Thirty-four more days,” Mason sighs.
“It’s been a long time and we both miss him. Imagine the celebration we’ll have when he comes back.”
“Can we make a surprise party? Surprises are the best!”
“Sure, we’ll plan it together.”
Mason studies the calendar and discovers Valentine’s Day is only two weeks away. He needs to plan a surprise for Mom. Mason enlists Grandma, his secret weapon, to help him make it happen.
On the morning of February 14, Mason waits in his room until – beep, plip, plop: Skype ringing. When he hears his dad’s voice, he scoops up the flowers and chocolate Grandma helped him buy. Racing to the living room, he jumps into Mom’s lap! A surprise Valentine’s Day party for Mom.
Thank you for reading this story. It’s my entry into a Valentine’s Day writing contest held by Susanna Leonard Hill. The parameters of the contest require the story be 214 words or less, tell a full story featuring a character who is hopeful, be appealing to children, and be related to Valentine’s Day.