After the tragic death of his sister, Jan, Dex Crawford leaves his life in Portland to take care of his twelve-year-old niece, Rowan. He gets a job as a physical therapist and tries to be a good guardian to Rowan, but they’re both grieving. The Christmas holidays hit Dex especially hard this year. He’d always left it to Jan to make the season merry, and now it’s up to him. Two weeks before Christmas, Dex has yet to even put up a Christmas tree.
Things go from bad to worse when Rowan’s clarinet is stolen right before the school holiday concert. Dex’s life begins to turn around when he accompanies Rowan to school to talk to her band teacher, Ed Alcott. Handsome and kind, Ed likes kids, music, and holiday decorations. Dex comes to think of him as his very own Christmas elf. Ed brings with him everything that’s been missing in Dex’s life: the possibility of love, home, and celebration… and Christmas trees.
A story from the Dreamspinner Press 2015 Advent Calendar package "Sleigh Ride".