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2005 American Christian Fiction Writers’ Book of the Year – Novella Category — Skipping Christmas meets RV in this funny, heartwarming novella. Penny Lassiter has a comfortable holiday routine with her family and friends–until her husband gets laid off from work and seemingly undergoes a personality transplant. When he comes home with a travel atlas and the keys to a borrowed RV, he turns her cookie-cutter Christmas plans into perfect chaos. She has no choice but to buckle herself and the kids in for a crazy cross-country ride that defies all of her expectations and redefines her priorities in a way she has never imagined.
SHORT EXCERPT: “I gritted my teeth and shifted the cardboard box against the spindly pull-down attic ladder. Whoever invented these contraptions obviously hadn’t considered that people would be going up and down the narrow steps with their arms full.
Of course, I could be transferring my aggravation to some nameless inventor instead of placing the blame where it belonged—squarely on the shoulders of my beloved husband and his recent mysterious attitude.
“The—” I pressed the side of my face against the cardboard, clutching my burden tightly, in spite of the dust particles crawling up my nose. “—very—” I lowered one foot, tapping air until I found the next step. It would be a disaster to fall with this box. “—idea!” I jumped off the last step and landed with a thud, gripping my priceless cargo.
For sixteen years, Thanksgiving afternoon at the Lassiters had meant one thing—putting up the Christmas tree.
I set the old box carefully on the hardwood floor in the den and stared at the words I’d written the year Phillip and I had married—Fragile: Christmas Ornaments. On the corner of the box, where I always denoted our storage containers as Summer or Winter or Open When Amanda Turns Ten, I had printed Thanksgiving Day. Even then, at the ripe old age of twenty, I never left anything to chance. Spell it out. No beating around the bush.
No doubt about it, today was the day.
So why had my husband, who loved Christmas as much as I did, announced cryptically at breakfast that instead of putting up the tree this afternoon he had something else planned? Granted, he’d been acting strange for at least a week, but his proclamation had thrown my whole day off kilter. And then, he’d driven off after lunch to take his parents home without another word about it.”
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