He and she had suffered a long week of final projects and papers due. They were happy to finally be done going to classes for the semester. She got a bit stir crazy once the semester ended, prematurely excited for her next set of classes. His mom had called in the middle of the week, inviting them to come over and bake some cookies. She was happy to oblige, hoping her experience at the cookie place would come in handy.
When the day finally came, they got up, got ready, and headed out. He, as usual, was rushing her, but it was mildly amusing. They got into his beat up truck and headed to his home town an hour and a half away. They loved singing with each other, harmonizing on key.
It felt like no time had passed as they pulled onto the back gravel driveway of the ranch style home. His step-dad walked over to them, the two dogs beating him there. One of the dogs, a small Sheltie he and she had previously named Sienna, had been theirs two years prior. “Dingo!” His step-dad called out to the pup, as the dog jumped up on them both in excitement.
They all went inside to wait for his mom to return from the grocery store. His step-dad went back out to his barn to continue cleaning it up. His younger brother, who shared the same first and middle name as she did, came up to the kitchen to hangout with them. The three of them talked about the impending holiday. “We always get a lot of gifts.” He explained, showing her the tree downstairs near his childhood bedroom. The tree wasn’t the only thing shielded by the enormous amount of gifts, they almost filled the small nook of their remodeled basement.
“Wow, my family usually gets us all one gift. Our trees look really bare underneath.” He laughed, speaking of how his Christmases had always been like this. They found their way back upstairs, playing a few games of Fast Track until his mom showed up. He and his brother ran out to help her carry in several loads of groceries. They mainly consisted of ingredients to bake cookies with.
She gave his mom and step-dad a small care package with chocolates, pocket Kleenex, Christmas scented candles, and Blue-Cheese Bourbon popcorn. His mom told her she had a few things in the large pile of gifts in the basement that she would get after Christmas. She felt like family, which was a happy moment for her.
He and his brother had to stop back at the store to get more peanut butter and flour. She stayed behind to help his mom make Reese’s peanut butter cup cookies. They had, at this point, already baked Peppermint Chocolate and peanut butter, while some sugar cookie dough chilled in the fridge. When the boys returned, they cracked open a case of Corona, passing them around.
The baking went on for hours. His uncle, eventually, came in to hang out with them. He had spent most of his life living on the road, and had just bought a motor home that was decorated with a jungle scene on the back. His uncle was staying there until he was able to get the motor home running properly. Hoover, his dog, had been his companion over the past 16 years.
Everyone in the kitchen was tiring from all the baking, ready to eat some dinner. He offered to go pick some up, while she and his mom cut cookies from the sugar cookie dough. Once he returned, everyone came to grab some pizza. At this point, his younger brother had left to hang out with friends, while his step-dad and uncle sat on the couch talking and watching TV.
The cookie baking had ended, as his mom filled a Christmas themed cookie tub for them to take back with them. After many conversations of the government and other long discussions that his uncle lead, they got in his truck to head back to his apartment, eating a few cookies and singing all the way home.