(Robot) Doggone It!

by

Chip the Robot Dog(WARNING: Not appropriate reading for young children!)

All my daughter wants for Christmas is this stupid robotic dog named “Chip” that, supposedly, you can teach to do obey you and do tricks like fetch a ball. (Yeah, I’m sure that’s exactly what it does.) It’s definitely not cheap, but at least it doesn’t make a mess on the living room carpet.

So last week Boogieface writes a note to Santa asking for the robot dog. She then gives the letter to our Elf on the Shelf, Snowflake (don’t even get me started on that) to deliver to the jolly old man himself. In the meantime, my wife goes online and places an order with Amazon Claus.

A few days later, I’m sitting at my computer in the late afternoon when I hear the doorbell. I get up to see who it is and see “Santa” walking down off the porch and back to his big brown truck in the street. When I open the door, I am aghast at what I see. Not a plain brown cardboard box, but a box just like you’d see in the toy store, with big pictures of Chip the robot dog splattered all over it! Luckily Boogs and The Animal had left just minutes before to go spend the night with my in-laws. Otherwise, Lucy, I’d have a lot of ‘splainin to do.

Instead of taking the box straight down to the basement to hide with the other gifts, however, I place it on the living room couch where I plan to open it up and test it out first. Unfortunately, I totally forget about it, just as I totally forget about moving our elf from the spot in the kitchen where the kids had last seen him. (Can you see where this is going?)

The next day Cassie and I go Christmas shopping and come home just in time for me to go pick up the kids from school. I have a chiro appointment that afternoon, so after picking up the kiddos I just pull into the drive and tell them to go inside where my wife is waiting for them. Seconds later I get a text:

>>She saw it! I’m shaking!!!

Saw it? I think. She saw wha—OH NO!

I immediately reply, my heart pounding:

>>Just make something up! Tell her it’s a gift for someone else!!

I can’t believe it. My daughter’s Christmas surprise is about to be ruined and the whole Santa thing is about to be ruined for both of my kids, all because I forgot to hide the damn robot dog, which Amazon inexplicably sent to us in such transparent packaging!

Luckily, my wife and I quickly devise a plan. She’ll just tell Boogieface that the robot dog was delivered to us by accident and that Daddy has to take it back to the Post Office so they can send it to the right person. Thankfully, my daughter buys it. Whew! When I get home, I pretend like I’m taking the box out to my car, but I really just hide it in the other room until I can take it downstairs later on.

As for the elf I had forgotten to move, Cassie manages to grab it and toss it across the kitchen to another spot just before the kids come looking for it. Yet another crisis is averted.

Look, I love Christmas and the joy it brings to my still-young (and clearly gullible) children, but, man…it sure is stressful at times. ~

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Copyright © 2016 Valentine J. Brkich

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