So just how do ugly Christmas sweaters lead to love? Here's a snippet to show you.
He shut the door as she buckled her seat belt. They were going to the mall to go Christmas shopping. Brad had the boys over the weekend, so Noelle thought it was the perfect time to get her shopping done. Turner had his shopping completed, so he was going to advise her on what four and six-year-old boys would want. After all, he’d been both. When he told her that, she grinned a little.
Noelle wanted to just rush through the mall, getting the things on her list as quickly as possible. Turner had other ideas. He held her hand and strolled slowly down the fairway, pointing out anything that might be of the slightest interest to her. When they went into the various department stores, he guided her through the ladies sections.
“Why are we going through here? I only need to go to the boys department. They both need jeans.” Noelle’s frustration was evident in her tone.
“Because you need to relax. We have all day. No need to rush. Just enjoy looking at the clothes and other things we see.”
.“But I want to get all the presents wrapped before the boys get home.”
Turner turned her to face him and placed his hands on her shoulders. He studied the serious expression on her face. Something had to be done to get her into the holiday spirit. “They aren’t coming home until tomorrow evening. There’s time. If it’s going to cause you to not enjoy doing the shopping, we’ll have them gift wrapped here in the mall. There’s a high school band or team or club raising money by doing gift wrapping. We can support them. I’ll pay.
“Let’s just have fun doing the shopping you want and looking at the people and the consumerism that Christmas has become.”
Noelle’s shoulders relaxed, and she let a small smile pull at her lips. “You’re right. I’m letting the stress of work, the church program, and Brad take all the joy out of my life.” She took a deep breath and let it whoosh out of her lungs. “Okay, show me what you want, but we do need to get jeans for the boys.”
Rather than hold her hand, Turner put his arm around her shoulders. “Come on. Let’s look at the Christmas displays they have. Who knows? You might find something you want to hang on your tree.”
They wandered through the racks and rows, past gift idea items that only seemed to come out during the holiday. Nearly out of the holiday section, Turner saw something and stopped. “Come on. We have to get some.”
Turner pulled her along, rushing to a table piled high. “Ugly Christmas sweaters. We can get matching ones. Do you suppose they have them in Camden’s and Mace’s sizes? Wouldn’t it be sweet for us to all wear matching ones to the Jenners on Christmas?”
The appalled look on Noelle’s face gave him the answer, but he wasn’t going to allow it to deter him. He grabbed one off the table and held it up. “Look, it’s a present, complete with a gold bow.”
“It certainly is.” Noelle flipped the large 3-D gold ribbon attached right in the center of the sweater front.
“OOO, here’s a great one.” He dropped the present sweater and picked up another one. It was blue with a large Christmas tree on the front. Red, white, and gold glittery pompons decorated the tree and ran up black suspenders. He held it up in front of his chest. “How great is this?”
Turner finally got the reaction from Noelle he wanted; her lips curled up in a smile. Glancing at a table behind her, he dashed over and grabbed one, plunking it on his head. “See, there’s even a matching hat.”
Noelle started laughing. “You’re a doofus, you know that?” She reached up and swiped the stuffed tree hat off his head. She put it back on the table, took the sweater from him, folded it, and placed it on the stack.
“Does this mean we aren’t going to get ugly Christmas sweaters?” He tried to sound like a disappointed little boy.
“You can certainly buy one, but if you want to be seen with me, you won’t ever wear it when I’m with you.”
“Spoilsport. Ugly Christmas sweaters are a holiday tradition.”
“One that should be retired.”
“Okay.” Turner hung his head and shuffled away as if he was pouting. He didn’t want Noelle to see the pleased grin on his face. He’d gotten her to laugh. He would even have bought the sweaters and worn his if she’d wanted to
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Sophie Dawson has made up stories in her head all her life. It wasn’t until 2011 that she began writing typing them out.
Her first books were all historical fiction romance. They’ve won multiple awards and garnered rave reviews. Now, Sophie is branching out into contemporary romance though she plans to continue writing historical and hopes to add more books in her popular Cottonwood and Stones Creek series.
Sophie lives with her husband and cat on a farm in western Illinois. She’s an avid seamstress and was a professional quilter for a number of years before the writing bug bit. She’s just thankful it’s not fatal.