The perfect gift for Christmas

Published 7:00 am Thursday, November 24, 2016

The holidays are always my favorite time of the year, and it’s because of a certain Christmas gift my parents surprised my brother and I with when we were 10 and 12-years-old.

On a cold, snowy Christmas morning in North Carolina, I frantically woke up my family in anticipation of walking down the stairs to a Christmas tree surrounded by many colorfully wrapped presents. However, what my brother and I did not realize was that our best present that year was not under the tree.

Each year, my parents put “money boxes” in the Christmas tree and filled them with cash as an additional present for my brother and I, but this time, there was no cash. Instead, a note with a hint to finding the grand prize through a scavenger hunt was inside.

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I immediately got excited and honestly didn’t even read the clue. Instead, I ran around opening almost every door in the house hoping to come across a large present waiting to be unwrapped. Unfortunately, my parents did a good job of hiding our present, so as a family, we went around the entire house clue after clue and eventually ended up at the garage.

I knew instinctively this was the last door my brother and I would be opening and at that moment, I heard a muffled bark coming from inside my father’s car.

“A puppy! We got a puppy,” my brother said as we ran toward the noise. As my parents opened the trunk of his Nissan Pathfinder, a baby husky was lying there waiting to be revealed.

Sky was one of the best surprises I have ever had as a child. This holiday season, the Pearl River County SPCA is offering a special on cats to allow other families to experience what I experienced as a child.

Pets can be a perfect gift for a child. They teach kids how to be responsible, keep them engaged in something and are perfect additions to most homes.

As someone who will never forget his first big surprise on Christmas Day, I encourage those who are on the fence about adopting a pet during the holidays, to go through with it. It’s one of those presents that makes Christmas Day something to remember and cherish.