It hadn’t felt the same, he’d only felt sad since it happened. But looking at the old gift, he now saw life differently.
The object might have been something simple, insignificant, to anyone else. However, to him and his family, it held precious memories and one final surprise.
Ricardo stared over the rim of his steaming coffee mug as the rest of the family quietly ate their breakfast.
The mood hung heavy and solemn over their heads. But it wasn’t the gloomy day that pressed down on the Cerezo family. It was a depressing anniversary.
It had been one year since they hadn’t seen their daughter. Since then, everything had fallen apart.
Ricardo could barely make ends meet and their house sat on the precipice of foreclosure. It was an endless void of sadness. None of them could imagine the huge change that was coming.
The father sighed as he opened another overdue bill. Despite everyone’s unending support, he couldn’t help but feel like a failure.
He had lost his daughter and now he was struggling to keep a roof over their heads. He pulled out his wallet and looked at it. There was only one thing he could do with it.
As he came back from his embarrassing errand, his wife saw what was in his hand.
She tried to hide her frown. He knew she hated his habit, but it was the only thing left that kept a tiny spark of hope alive. Ricardo slipped the paper into the decorative cookie jar. The glass vessel was beyond priceless for one simple reason.
It was the last gift their daughter had given them – just two months she’d be out of their lives forever.
They had other little trinkets, like a stone frog she had bought on holiday, but this cookie jar was something that showed just how generous she was. The father, however, had no idea what was really waiting inside.
A couple of months later, Ricardo was sitting on the porch and holding Savannah’s old diary to his chest.
He thought back on all the wonderful moments the family had together, like their fishing trip. She was so proud of the tiny swimmer she had caught. But then, his wife comes out, looking angry.
“Take care of them now, or I’m throwing them out,” she said.
He nodded. There was no point in arguing. She was right. He couldn’t just let the papers sit there. So, he gathered them up, slipped them in his wallet, and blew a kiss to the cookie jar. By the time he would return, their lives would be changed.
Richardo pulled up to the local convenience store, slips of paper ready.
The attendant knew him well and gave a hello and sympathetic glance. “Time to check?” he asked. “Yeah. Who knows, maybe our luck has changed.” The worker started to scan the lottery tickets.
Every beep that went by was the “thanks for playing” signal that there was no prize.
However, as they reached the bottom of the pile, one gave off a different ring. Richardo smiled. A few extra bucks would be nice. But the worker’s eyes turned wide. “Uh, you have to file a claim,” he said.
The father’s face took on the same expression. A claim meant the prize was big.
However, when he checked the numbers against the winning ones … he saw that they all matched. The Cerezo family had just won 4.85 million dollars. He frantically dialed home to double-check.
Screams of excitement burst through the receiver as the family heard the news.
Richardo stood in the middle of the convenience store, tears streaming down his cheeks. When he got home, his family rushed together for a huge embrace. But then he saw the cookie jar.
One of the reasons their daughter had bought it for them, was because he kept losing his receipts and lottery tickets.
If it wasn’t for her, they wouldn’t still have anything. He crumbled to his knees, bawling. Even then, his child was still watching out for him. But what did the family do with their newfound fortune?
It wasn’t the biggest lottery win by far, but when news of the special jar had reached the public, everyone wanted to hear the story in detail.
The family appeared on interviews and talk shows. Everyone wanted to know where the money would go. There was one thing Richardo was sure about.
They were going to pay off their house and set their kids up for a secure future. However, most of what was leftover would go to charities and their church.
To him, they had been blessed with something special beyond words. They wanted to share the joy their daughter had given them.