December

Raymond’s Perfect Present

By Therese On Louie

Illustrated by Suling Wang

One day Raymond sees a young woman smile with pleasure when she is given a gift of
flowers. Maybe I could buy Mom some flowers, Raymond thinks, to help her feel better
now that she is home from the hospital.
When Raymond realizes he doesn’t have enough money to buy flowers, he decides to
grow her some flowers from seeds, to help her feel better. But his mother returns to the
hospital before the flowers bloom. As the flowers grow and then begin to wilt, Raymond
thinks his present is ruined and fears his mother will never see his present after all. To
Raymond’s surprise, the seeds on the dying flowers attract a flock of colorful birds to his
mother’s bedroom window, bringing back fond memories of her childhood and providing
a present more perfect than anything Raymond had planned.

Do you think someone is ever too young to help? Do you think a young person can
help an adult or make an adult feel better? Why or why not?