An icy flutter of wind breathed against my face and my eyelashes trembled. Outside lay a snow-velvet blanket covering the world. Barefoot, I dashed downstairs to tug at the door. As I opened it, a fresh wave of icy air blew into the house and my toes curled and turned blue. I didn’t care! It was going to be a white Christmas and, although not properly dressed, I couldn’t resist stepping out into the garden to make the first tracks in the snow.
I heard my name being called from the kitchen and ran back inside. My cheeks were flushed scarlet and my eyes bright with excitement. I ran into the room where Daddy was sleeping. ‘It’s snowing!’ I cried as I hurled a pillow in his direction. No real response - just a mumble and a snore.
The smell of buttered toast and crispy bacon drifted up the stairs into the sleepy dreams of my siblings. I woke them all with my shouts of “Snow!”. Soon, a hungry, dribbling cluster was bundled behind me as we went in search of breakfast.
It was the first taste of snow for the youngest two and after hurriedly gulping down our meal, we grabbed our coats and went outside. Very soon, Z. was crying because her hands felt so cold but she didn’t want to take them out of the snow, Gigi began to wriggle in my arms wanting her first handful of snow and my brothers were challenging each other to a fight in the snow! I breathed a sigh of relief when Mummy and Daddy appeared. I handed over all the babies and went to see what the golden, sparkling package was that was hanging on a tree at the bottom of the garden.
A label on the package read: ‘Dear Children - this is an early Christmas arrival. Don’t open until the 25th December. Love from Father Christmas and Rudolph. xxx’ The younger children were wild with excitement and begged to open the gift, but Mummy stayed firm. As they drifted back inside, I looked far into the sparkling, white distance and thought how beautiful this Christmas was going to be.