The Present Problem
    Footnotes

    “The Present Problem,” Friend, May 2018

    The Present Problem

    The author lives in Colorado, USA.

    Sophie wanted to make Mother’s Day special.

    “Mother, I love you; mother, I do” (Children’s Songbook, 207).

    a girl drawing cards

    Illustration by Jana Christy

    Sophie had a problem.

    Mother’s Day was coming, and she wanted to give Mom a gift. Mom was going to have a baby, and she had to stay in bed so the baby could grow stronger. Sophie thought staying in bed sounded like the most boring thing in the world! So she wanted to give Mom something special to cheer her up. But she didn’t have any money to buy a present.

    After school Sophie went to Mom’s room. She climbed up on the bed and got comfy.

    “Tell me about your day,” Mom said.

    Sophie started telling Mom about a silly poem she wrote about parrots in polka-dot pants parading around the park. Then she thought of her problem. Her voice trailed off, and her eyebrows scrunched up.

    “What’s wrong?” Mom asked.

    “I don’t have any money to buy you a present for Mother’s Day!” Sophie blurted out.

    Mom smiled and patted Sophie’s hand. “Oh, honey. The best presents come from the heart,” she said. “Besides, you and Dad and the new baby are all the presents I need.”

    Sophie sighed. Mom was always saying stuff like that. But Sophie still wanted to get her a present.

    That night Sophie knelt by her bed.

    “Heavenly Father, please help me think of a present I can give Mom for Mother’s Day,” she prayed.

    In the morning, Sophie hadn’t even opened her eyes yet when an idea popped into her brain! She hopped out of bed and ran to tell Dad what she wanted to do.

    “That’s a great idea,” he said. “Mom will love it.”

    Since it was Saturday and she didn’t have school, Sophie got to work on her idea right away. She got out paper, markers, and scissors. She got out glitter glue and stickers. She used a ruler to draw a rectangle. Then she carefully cut around the edges.

    In her best handwriting, Sophie wrote, “This coupon is good for a hug and a kiss.”

    Sophie made another coupon for setting the table. She made one for picking up baby toys. She made one for washing windows. With each coupon, Sophie thought about how much she loved Mom. Soon she had a colorful stack. She wrapped them in gold paper and tied a ribbon around the bundle.

    On Mother’s Day morning, Sophie handed the shiny package to Mom.

    Mom smiled as she opened the crinkly paper. Her smile got even bigger when she saw what was inside.

    “Thank you, Sophie! This is the best present ever,” she said, pulling Sophie into a hug.

    Sophie felt warm and happy inside. Mom was right. The best presents did come from the heart.