Endless Love (Santa’s Secret Helpers #5) - Leeanna Morgan

Chapter 1

Shelley walked into The Connect Church’s first fundraising meeting of the New Year and smiled. Everyone on the Santa’s Secret Helpers committee had made an effort to be here.

Emma, Mabel, Kylie, and Bailey were all talking at once. John, her amazing fiancé and the pastor of the church, was watching what was going on. As the only male committee member, he was used to their excited chatter and wandering minds.

When he turned toward her, Shelley’s heart melted. She loved him more than she’d ever loved anyone else.

She sat beside him and kissed his cheek. “I just spoke to Mr. Jessop. He’s found six volunteers to help in the greenhouses this afternoon.”

“That’s good. Two of the volunteers wouldn’t be Andy and Charlie, would they?”

“How did you guess?”

“It wasn’t difficult.”

Andy, Charlie, and their mom, Andrea, were staying with Mr. Jessop for the next few months. With The Welcome Center at full capacity, John was relying on the generosity of the community to provide extra beds for people who couldn’t find anywhere to live.

Mabel, the owner of the general store, tapped her pen on the edge of her coffee cup. “Welcome, everyone, to the first Santa’s Secret Helpers committee meeting of the year. Before we get started, I’d like to officially congratulate Shelley and John on their engagement.”

Bailey grinned at her sister.

She didn’t have to say anything for Shelley to know what she was thinking. Six weeks ago, she’d stepped out of the Brown Bear shuttle van ready to surprise her two sisters with an unexpected visit. Never in a million years would she have realized that the person who gave her a ride to Bailey’s house would be the man she’d want to spend the rest of her life with.

Kylie smiled at John and Shelley. “All you have to do is let me know when you’re getting married and I’ll supply the flowers.”

“That’s really sweet of you,” Shelley said. “But at the rate we’re going, John and I won’t be getting married until next Christmas.”

Mabel leaned forward, the agenda in front of her forgotten. “I thought you were being too optimistic when you said you wanted to get married in January. Even organizing Bailey’s wedding for Valentine’s Day was difficult.”

John placed his hand on top of Shelley’s. He’d been working just as hard as Shelley to find a venue that was large enough for their families. “If we have to get married later in the year, then that’s what we’ll do. What’s the first item on the agenda?”

Mabel picked up the sheet of paper in front of her. “The Christmas wish program. Is everyone still happy to use some of the money we receive from other fundraising projects on this program?”

Emma nodded. “We received a lot of requests for Christmas wishes from the community. It would be a shame not to help more people.”

“I agree,” Bailey said. “As well as making people happy, it encourages the Christmas spirit to last all year.”

Mabel looked at the nodding heads around the table. “It looks as though we’re all in agreement. With that in mind, the next item on our agenda is the flower wishes fundraiser.”

Shelley took five copies of a spreadsheet out of a folder and handed them to her friends. Two weeks before Valentine’s Day, they were launching their next fundraising event. Single, gift-wrapped flowers would be sold from Blooming Lovely, Kylie’s flower shop.

“We’re moving along nicely with what needs to be done. Kylie and I are meeting later today to finalize the information on her store’s website.”

Kylie placed a basket on the table. “I brought some samples of what the flowers could look like.”

When she held up one of the flowers, Mabel gasped. “Oh, my. It’s beautiful.”

Shelley agreed. The outer edges of the crimson rose had been dipped in red glitter. It looked stunning against the fine black tulle Kylie had wrapped it in.

When Kylie took the second flower out of the basket, Shelley smiled. The bright orange Gerbera looked lovely with its glittery edges and sparkly paper wrapped around the outside.

“I tried to keep the look consistent and simple. Depending on what flowers are available at the market, I can create large numbers of each flower for the fundraiser.”

John held one of the flowers. “Do you need any help?”

“I think I’ll be okay,” Kylie said with a smile. “Jackie and Paris, my part-time staff, will be at the store. And the students from the church’s youth employment program have offered to give us a hand.”

Shelley studied the spreadsheet. “We should have

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