“Bastinado!” Allie cursed under her breath as she stepped on a toy for the third time on the short trip to the bathroom. The first had been a squeaky toy that startled her more than hurt. The second had been play dough. At least, she hoped it was play dough…

She had made sure Roma only played with the Legos at the table. She was certain they were all put back in the plastic bin downstairs. So, what was she stepping on that hurt so much?

She performed a Plié, which was easier than bending over in her very pregnant state.

It was a toy soldier. A little piece of plastic was torturing her foot.

Allie limp-hopped into the bathroom, sighing with relief when she finally met her goal.

“Where did you come from?” She asked the tiny man. “Did Grandpa Loren give you to Roma? Or was it Uncle Jake?”

Allie had never thought of Thanksgiving as being a gift-giving holiday, yet every family member seemed to have spontaneously decided to bring something for their new addition. Roma’s eyes had gone wide when she saw the stack of presents. Allie had forced herself not to over-react. Even though Roma’s adoption was a long-awaited, much celebrated event, she was determined to give her daughter as normal a life as possible, and not to spoil her, even though every fiber of her body wanted to buy every toy and adorable little dress she saw.

The baby squirmed, and Allie wondered how many more times she would have to get up to pee that night.

She wondered how many more toys she’d find hidden in the plush carpet.

And she couldn’t be happier.

This little story was written in response to the Write On Edge prompt to choose one of the small items in the picture and use it as inspiration.

This week, I have a couple of important extras! A few weeks ago, my first story  was published in an anthology called Precipice. It’s available in both print and electronic formats. Also, I have a short story entered in the America’s Next Author contest, which ends soon. You can read and download that story for free on the website. I’d appreciate your vote (just takes a click on the site, no log in) and if you’re feeling very generous, please leave a review! (requires a log-in with basic info)

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