One of my favorite parts of Christmas is Ron Carlsons's "The H Street Sledding Record"
"How do you like it?" Elise says to me. She has selected a short broad bush which seems to have grown in two directions at once and then given up. She sees the look on my face and says, "If you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all. Besides, I've already decided: this is the tree for us."Go, dear reader, go and read that short story. It will be the best thing you read this Christmas eve. I promise you. It's wonderful and heart-lifting. Carlson is, after all, the master of the happy ending.
"It's a beautiful tree," Drew says.
"Quasimodo," I whisper to Drew. "This tree's name is Quasimodo."
"No whispering," Elise says from behind us. "What's he saying now, Mom?"
"He said he likes the tree, too."
Elise is not convinced and after a pause she says, "Dad. It's Christmas. Behave yourself."