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Clare writes inspirational romance, usually of a suspenseful nature. Her books are available through her publisher Pelican Book Group and Amazon. She is married with three kids and lives in the UK. She loves watching sci-fi, crime drama, cross stitching, reading and baking.

Saturday, 3 December 2011

Advent day 3 - Carol Ann Erhardt

The Unexpected Christmas Bonus

by Carol Ann Erhardt

"I'm getting a Christmas bonus this year, hon," I told my husband.

"Really? That's great. Maybe we can get that new refrigerator now."

We'd been nursing along our ancient side-by-side for the past two years, but other more pressing things drained our funds. Earlier in the year, hubby had to remove the handle on the refrigerator door and mount it a little lower because the screws had become stripped. Looking straight at the unit would make you laugh, because the freezer handle was about four inches higher. A new appliance would be welcomed. But, the unit was still functional. Maybe it would be best if we waited until it clunked out. If it held up for a couple more months, we might draw a little interest on the money by putting it in our practically non-existent savings account.

We headed out that weekend to look at refrigerators. Crowds were already heavy…everyone out shopping for Christmas. Red bows, music, brightly decorated trees adorned even the appliance stores. Prices were really high, much higher than I’d anticipated. Purchasing a new one would take all my unexpected Christmas bonus plus the remaining funds in our account. What if we had an unexpected emergency? A new refrigerator wouldn’t help pay bills. And, there had been something else on my mind lately, too.

The next morning I woke early to get ready for church. I had made a decision on what I wanted to do with the money, and I hoped my hubby would understand.

"Honey, I've been thinking."

He looked at me with raised eyebrows. "Really?” He grinned.

"I kind of like the look of the refrigerator with the offset handles. And it does work."

His grin lifted higher. "And..." he prompted.

"And our kids are struggling this year, too. I’ve been remembering how hard it was to pay the bills and provide a few presents for our kids on Christmas. I think we should divide the Christmas bonus and give it to the children to help with their expenses."

He grinned. "Okay."

"So you agree?"

He hugged me. "Of course I agree. That's why I married you. You have such a big heart. Now hurry up and get dressed so we're not late for church."

That year was one of our best Christmases ever, and that old side-by-side? It continued to function for another two years until we could afford to replace it.


Inspirational romance writer, Carol Ann Erhardt, touches the hearts and emotions of her readers. Fans categorize her books as emotional, suspenseful and inspirational.

She gives the glory to God. Carol Ann lives in Columbus, Ohio, with her husband and three cats. She divides her time between volunteering at her church, being a caregiver for her hubby, caring for twelve feral cats, enjoying time with her eight children and their families, and writing. She is the newsletter editor for Central Ohio Fiction Writers, and a member of Romance Writers of America, Kiss of Death, and American Christian Fiction Writers. Learn more about Carol Ann by visiting her website at www.CarolAnnErhardt.com.

And don't forget to check out the holiday extravaganza. Either a new book or a special offer each day up til Christmas.


Delia Latham said...

Very sweet story...and sounds so familiar! lol We never stop trying to take care of our kids, do we...no matter how old they are! :D

Carol Ann said...

That's so true, Delia. They are always are babies and we hurt when they do! Thanks for stopping by today.

Dora Hiers said...

Great memory, Carol Ann. It's the cycle of life, isn't it? But as my 96-year-old grandfather will testify, one day those kids/grandkids that you've loved and nurtured will be taking care of you. Glad you finally got your fridge!

Clare, I'm enjoying your Advent posts. Great idea.

Tanya Hanson said...

Love the post, Carol Ann. My kids are the light of my heart so I totally understand. Clare, thanks for this wonderful advent calendar!

LoRee Peery said...

Lovely -- reminds me of how I so wanted a side by side. When we got it, it didn't fit where I wanted it and it has less room inside. Too bad I didn't have something to give away instead.

Donna B said...

It's so amazing how we are blessed by the blessings that we share - and not to be redundant, but God bless you all!

Carol Ann said...

So sorry I've been away from the computer today. Thank you so much Tanya, LoRee, Dora, and Donna B for stopping by and a great big thank you to Claire for hosting me here today! I've been busy with my church group crocheting prayer shawls and chemo caps. So much joy in being together and working together to help others through troubled times and to bless Jesus!

Marianne Evans said...

Parenthood never ends - and it's the most wonderful grace from God I can possibly imagine. Great post, Carol - and wonderful reminder of what's most important in life!! Blessings~

Carol Ann said...

Glad you stopped by, Marianne, and so happy that people can relate to my post today.

Clare Revell said...

It was a pleasure to host you Carol Ann.
Thanks for all the comments :)