Crafting Christmas (2020) - full transcript

Mandy Page, the owner of a used book store, loves Christmas.When she finds a touching letter to Santa stuffed between the pages of an old book recently donated, she decides it would be fun ...

by VaVooM

Those are amazing,
I love it!


Mandy, someone left a box for
the donation drive out back.


Someone also left a whole bunch
of trash next to the dumpster.

- Do you want a hand?
- I got it.

- Are you sure, Gabby?
- Yep, people. A few inches further

and the trash is where
it's supposed to go.

A hymn book?

Yeah, there's a lot of used
books and toys in here too.

I thought we were only
taking new things.

Whoever left this
must not have known.

It's okay, I'll take care of it.

Look at this,
"A Christmas Carol".


It's a classic.

And it's an early edition too.

A child still
isn't gonna want it.

I know, but...

What's that?

I don't know.

A coin!

"Dear, Santa, I have
been good all year

"and tried to help my mother.

"I know we won't have
much for Christmas.

"That is just fine by me,
but could you help me?

"I found a coin I think
my father would like.

"He died in the war though.

"For Christmas this year,
could my present

"be you giving
this to my father?

"He liked collecting these.

"I miss him, and I know he
would love it, love, Judith".


she even put the date on it.

December 11th, 1947.

So long ago!

Why is this here?

It's sweet,
who'd wanna give it away?

I know, maybe they didn't
know it was with this stuff.

Judith, who are you?

Creek Hill Chapel.

Hello, excuse me?



All right, then.

- Sorry!
- It's okay.

Are you all right, I
didn't mean to scare you.

Yeah, no, you didn't scare me.

A little startled, but let's
not tell anybody about that.

You got it.

All right, let me
get this.

Thank you.

Sorry, I think I'm
making it worse.

- Oh well.
- Sorry.

It's okay. Better?

Yeah, yeah, I mean, it was
good before, but...

Got it.

So you here to see the pastor?

Yes, I am looking to track
down who donated these books.

I did, I took 'em to a drop-off
in town for a book drive.

That's my place, I'm Mandy.

Hey, Jonah,
nice to meet you.

So are these your books then?

No, I found 'em in a back room
with some odds and ends

the pastor asked me to throw
away, but I don't know,

those books
and a few other things

just seemed like they
were worth saving.

Especially if someone
else might like 'em.

I don't suppose you happen
to know who this book

in particular
belonged to, do you?

No, why?

This letter was inside
the book and a coin too.

I wanted to find the person
who wrote it.

It's amazing, isn't it?

Yeah, that's pretty neat.

Judith, judging by
the date, she'd be...

In her late 70s, probably.

You don't by chance know
who that is, do you?

Are you from around here?

I am, but a woman
named Judith in her 70s?

Sorry, kinda thin to go on.

I know, someone else probably
would've thrown this out,

but there's something
special about it, you know?

Yeah, I mean,
any kid's letter to Santa is.

And this one, it being as
old as it is, I get it.

Anyway, I was hoping maybe
it came from someone here.

Well, you know, the pastor
probably knows more,

but he's not here right now,
but I can talk to him.

- Would you?
- Yeah.

That would be great,
or I can come back.

Or you can leave a way
to get ahold of you

and I can talk to him
or have him call you.

Thank you,
you said Jonah, right?

Yeah, Canton Construction
& Renovations.

Okay, thanks,

and sorry to have
interrupted your work.

Not a problem at all.

Bye then, and thanks again.

Yeah, no problem.

You done for the night?

Yeah, just powering down.

We'll pick up where
we left off tomorrow.


So what do you think,
we still on schedule?

Yeah, I think so.

We'll let you know if
we hit any hiccups.

All right.

Yeah, hey, a woman
came by this morning,

asking about the books we
found in the back room.

She said she found something
interesting in one of them

and was trying to
track down the owner.

I wish I knew,
everything in there

has accumulated over the years,
long before I was pastor here.

How 'bout a woman named Judith?
She'd be much older now.

Well, there's a Judith Tucker,
but she's only in her 50s, so...

Anybody else?

No one that comes to mind.

I'm sure Pastor O'Brien
would have known more.

Are there church records
that go back that far?

Well, I'm afraid I had
to throw a lot them out,

they were damaged from a
burst pipe a few winters ago.

The only thing that's left
is the more recent ones.

This woman,
is she a friend of yours?

We just met.

Thought she might've been a...


Well, you seem very
determined to help her.

Well, it's not quite like that.


She must be a very special lady.

Good night, Pastor.

This turned out so great,
you are quite the artist!

- Have a merry Christmas.
- Thanks!

I wonder
if this is worth anything.

Well, if it is, maybe you
shouldn't handle it like that.

Seriously though,
you should find out.

Andre has his rare book
store around the corner.

He'd know something.

Doesn't matter though,

I wanna return it to
the letter writer.

It might matter to Judith if you
ever find her, which is a big if.

I know.

What if she's passed away?

I mean, decades
have gone by, so...

I get it, the deck is
stacked against me,

but I still wanna try.

Well, I'm no expert,

but I do dabble in
coins here and there.

You know, the hardest thing

is when some young
fella comes in

with his great-uncle's

certain he's about
to strike it rich.

Well, I was just curious to
know what I've been holding.

Well, not to get
your hopes up, but...


It's 1895.

This is a proof coin.

This coin in mint condition

could be worth $30,000 easily.

It's a bit worn, but still,
you've got quite a coin here.

$30,000, really?

Now, I said could be,

and that's if it were in perfect
condition, no guarantees.

Of course, thanks, Andre.

Yeah, look, if you decide to sell this,
I hope you'll let me bid on it.

You bet, but not mine to sell.

Thanks again.

- You've won the lottery!
- No, Judith has.

Okay, but think about it,
after you've done everything

you can and you can't find her...

Hey, don't jinx this!

Or she's passed away or
is somehow unreachable,

what will you do?

I'll find her or her family.

They deserve to have
the coin and the letter.

Wouldn't this make the best
Christmas present for them?

Sure, Christmas is a
couple weeks away, though.

Plenty of time.

Oh, boy.

Any luck?

There are a lot of Judiths,
even just around here.

I didn't think it was
that common of a name.

Too bad it's not Gabby,
there aren't too many of us.


Did you just type in Judith
and think you'd find her?

I typed in the name
of towns around here,

Everett, Kingston, you know.

Hey, it's just a start.

I'll say, anything else you
need done around here tonight?

No, thanks, Gabby.

- All right, I'll take off then.
- Okay, good night.

Sorry, we're closed.

Hi, Mandy.

Jonah, sorry, I thought
you were a customer.

It's okay, I talked
to the pastor.

You did, what did he say?

He doesn't know
who it could belong to.

Okay, well thank you
for asking him though.

Did you come all this
way just for that?

No, I was in the area
buying supplies for a job.

But I had an idea.

I wanna help you find Judith.

You do?

Yeah, you know, I spent
most of my life in Everett,

and assuming Judith
is from there

or around there,
let's team up.

Well, I wanna find her
by Christmas,

so I could use
all the help I can get.

But are you sure?

Yeah, why not?

Well, you have your renovations
and your work to do.

You know, a lot of that
can go on without me.

I've got subcontractors
and others

who really do a lot of the work.

But why do you wanna
spend your time with this?

I don't know, it's
intriguing and kinda noble.

And you seem like
somebody worth helping.


Plus, I know where
we can get started.


The letter mentioned
that her father died

in the war, World War II.

So you're hoping we could find

a list of those who served
from the Everett area.

- Exactly.
- Okay.

What do y'all need?

Hi, we're trying to
track down soldiers

who died in World War II
who lived in the County.

Is that something you
might have record of.


Yeah, we don't have that.


Give me a few minutes.

- She thinks we're crazy.
- Yeah, could be worse.

Thanks for this,
you know, helping.

I'm happy I can.

I'm taking you away
from your building!

Or renovating?

Let's just call it construction,
that general enough?

Have you done that long?

Yeah, I mean, around here
it's more fixing up things

and building add-ons than
building new buildings,

but every once in awhile
a big job comes up.

Have you thought about
moving to a bigger city?

Yeah, been there, done that,
but didn't like it.

Well, why's that?

It's too tense, you know?

Everything's more expensive,
more red tape, more stress.

Building's supposed
to be exciting.

I started to dread it.

So you left.

I came back home.

It's not as busy here,
the money's not as good,

but I really love it here.

Me too.

Here it is.

This is it?

Yep, it's the whole County,
you'll have to sift through it.

Is there any way we
could check this out?

We're not a library, but
we have a copy machine.

Without a name there's so many.

Well, it could be a
starting point though.

Where is that copy machine?

I didn't pay attention
before, but this is cool.

You can make your own crafts?

Yeah, this time of year

it's all about decorating
things for Christmas.

But the store stays busy
all year round with date nights,

other holidays, birthday
parties, and such.

So creative and cute,
can I say that?

Of course.

Hey, we had a few more
toy donations come in.


Who's this?

Gabby, this is Jonah,
he's helping with the...

Mystery letter writer search,

Thank you,
nice to meet you.

So you work here?

Yep, I keep this place running
while Mandy's distracted.

Sorry, it's one
of my job sites.

Do you mind if we
pick this up tomorrow?

I should have this
settled by then.


- Great, there you go.
- Thank you.

- Bye!
- Bye.

He seems nice enough.


- Make any progress today?
- Yep, well, sort of.

What's that?

A haystack.

We really need to get
this done right this time,

so let's not disappoint.

Got it, I'll get right on it.

Looks like you're
pretty busy here.

You sure you have
time for this now?

Oh yeah, it'll be nice to
take a break from this mess.

We had some work
done here that,

how should I put it,
failed spectacularly.

Yeah, I hired someone here
who messed up pretty bad.

We didn't find out
until we were all done

and the business reopened.

Now it's causing a huge
inconvenience for them

and costing me a small fortune,

but it'll be nice
when it's done.

Well, I brought everything,
including two copies

of the letter so I don't
damage the original.

Very nice.

You ready?

Oh yeah, I was thinking we'd start
with those who died in Everett.

Wish these were
organized better.

Too bad computers
weren't invented earlier.

I was crazy to think

this would lead to something.

Actually, it was my crazy idea.

Oh sorry, it's like solving
for X in a math problem

but without any other numbers.

Judith could have
left us more clues.

Yeah, right?

I'm sure she thought that
while she was writing it.

Now look at this,
there's a next of kin

listed with each one
of these soldiers.

What if the mother
was named Judith?

Daughters aren't named
after mothers very often.

Or another relative.

I'm not saying we find
a Judith Junior.

I wonder if we cross reference
the County list

with all the Judiths I found,
maybe, I don't know,

maybe something connects.

Yeah, you really wanna
type all this up?

No, I...

I saw something.


Victor Franklin.

It's his book!
Maybe that is Judith's brother.

Or her dad, either way,
that's a lead.

He's gotta be here.

If he was a soldier.

But maybe Victor wasn't.

Well, I am more than halfway
through, so with my luck,

probably be on the last
page I look through.

Nope, not on the
last page.

Now, what if it was a brother?

Look at his handwriting,
it's kind of young looking.

But it could also be
the father's copy.

The book was first
published in the 1800s.

Not this edition.

Okay, let's say you're right.

What do you suggest?

Victor Franklin, age 78.
This could be him.

What did you search?

Property records
and a phone number.

He lives in Everett.


So I'll call Victor to set
something up for tomorrow

while Gabby's running the store.

Gabby wasn't kidding.

About what?

She says she runs the
store while you're busy.

Yeah, it's a lot to be
cooped up in the store

from sunup to sundown, so I was
looking for someone to help,

and then Gabby comes along

knocking on my glass door
selling solar panels.


Yep, she had this
deadpan blunt sales pitch

straight out of whatever
talking points she'd been given.

It made me laugh.

And you hired her
based off of that?

Yeah, I appreciated her honesty.

She will call it
like she sees it,

and as long as she believes in
what she's doing,

she will work hard.

And now she works
for your store.

Well, my great-grandfather's
store, actually.

It started out as a book store

and then toys when my parents
ran it, and over time,

I've shifted it
to do-it-yourself.

And now it's just you
and Gabby running the place?

Since my parents retired, yes.

In fact, they are on
their dream vacation,

a six-month cruise.

I think they still have
three months left,

won't even be back
for Christmas.

Do you have any
brothers and sisters?

Two brothers, but they
didn't appreciate the store.

They live in Oregon and Nevada.

So what do you plan to do
for Christmas

without your family around?

I'm still trying
to figure that out.

I could sleep in,
go see a movie,

open presents for
myself whenever I want.

What about you,
any big plans?

Yeah, I'm actually
gonna host my parents.

I think they expect me to cook.

Okay, well, you can
always get takeout.

For Christmas dinner?

My mother would be horrified.

Hey, Jonah, can you come take
a look at something real quick?


I should let you
get back to work.

All right.

- Bye.
- See you later.

This is Victor Franklin,

I'm sorry I can't
come to the phone now,

but if you'll leave...

Are you ever gonna
leave a message?

I already did, I keep
hoping he'll pick up,

but I don't wanna come
across as too persistent.

Who you calling, Jonah?


I thought you were playing
hard to get or something.

No, he's just helping out.

No, I was calling this
man named Victor Franklin.

He might be the owner of
"The Christmas Carol" book.

And he hasn't answered
or called you back?


Here, use your phone,
here's his number, you call.

- I'm not calling a stranger.
- Come on, just try it.

No, if he hasn't answered,
there's probably a good reason.

But it's important.

Yeah, you have to find out
if he owned a book once.

Just, come on, call!

Am I getting extra
time off for this?

Is it going through?

This is Victor Franklin...

- Voicemail.
- I'm sorry I can't come...

See, he's not dodging
your calls after all.

Leave your name...

You want me to leave a message?

No, yes, no,
no, no, no, no, no.

Good job,
now you'll just have to wait.

Jonah did find his address.

- Hey!
- Hi.

Victor never called back, so...

Well, let's see if he's home.

All right then.

Can I help you?

I don't know anyone
named Judith Franklin.

Well, I got a niece
named Judith though.

Do you know
when she was born?

1960, I think.

A bit young for
who we are looking for.

Did you know any other
Judiths growing up?

Oh, now, my memory's
not that good.

How 'bout this book?

Is this yours?

Well, I don't recall.

I never was much
of a Dickens fan.

It has your name written in it.

Where'd you find it?

At an old church in town.

We thought maybe
you left it behind

at some point when
you were growing up.

I don't think so.

I was born and
raised in California.

We just moved out here
maybe four years ago.

My wife's sister
needed some help,

so we came on out,
uprooted ourselves.

Sure do miss those mild winters
back there.

I'm not fit for this snow
they got out here.

Well, it was worth a shot.

Jonah, did you see the
book by his glasses?

- No.
- It was a yearbook.

Yeah, but it's not him though.

No, but odds are there
is a Victor Franklin

in a yearbook somewhere, right?

And you're thinking?

We could check
the schools around here,

see if they have any
Victor Franklins?

I like it, I'll pull up
the addresses for the schools.


Cellphones are supposed
to be off here.

Hang on a second, sorry.


- Is this Jonah Canton?
- Yes.

I'm from Taggart
Collection Agency.

We're calling about
your overdue balances.


This school has been around
since the 1950s, right?

Yes, 1949.

Do you happen to have any
yearbooks from back then?

Every one since
the school opened.

Perfect, is there a way
I could look at those?

Which year?

To be safe,
how about 1949 to 1963?

It's for a really good cause.

We can't extend it any further.

- Yeah, I understand.
- Okay, thank you very much, buh-bye.

Okay, bye.

This might take awhile.

Could I check these out?

The library's only for
students and staff.

Where else can I find these?

Well, I don't know.

Look, I promise I will take
such good care of them

and I will bring them back soon.

I can ask the principal, but
she's out today and tomorrow.

Why don't you come
back next week?

I'm kind of under a time crunch.

Look, it's Thursday,
how about I promise

to bring them back
to you on Monday?

That long?

Well, I'll work on it
over the weekend

and then I will bring
them back to you

first thing Monday morning.

Let me get you a box.

I don't want these getting
damaged or wet if it's snowing.

Thank you!


What's all that?


I don't think those
will be sought after

from the donation bin.

We are tracking
down Judith and Victor.

That's a lot of yearbooks.

Three high schools'
worth, Everett, Kingston,

we even drove to Midwell.

And they all want them back
early next week

before school closes
for Christmas.

Sounds like a new haystack.

Oh yeah.

Well, let me take some home.
We can divide 'em up.


Well, I'm glad you're back,

I need to run to my niece's
school Christmas program tonight

that I told you about?

- Yes, so I'm closing up then.
- Yep.

- Have a good night.
- You too.

Maybe I'll give the
mama one to you instead.

Now, what are they making?

You've never seen an ugly
Christmas sweater before?

I have, I just didn't
know people made their own.

They do here.

What size sweater do you wear?

Have you always wanted to
run your family's store?

Sure, I love it.

Ever found a secret
letter in a book,

like when it was
your grandpa's store?

No, receipts, yes, inscriptions,

or "To my grandson, Timmy,"
kind of sentiments, yes.

But never a Santa letter.

I was always careful
to put the postage

on my letters to Santa, took
them to the mailbox myself.

Really, what kinda
things did you write?

The usual, "Can I please
have a skateboard or a toy?"

Or I'd plead for forgiveness
if I was feeling really guilty

about something I had
done that I was sure

would keep me from getting
any presents at all that year.

That's sweet.

What about you?
Any letters to Santa?

Yeah, it was a
tradition growing up,

so my brothers and I would
sit around the dinner table

on the first Sunday of
December and write our letters.

And what would you write?

My memory is pretty vague.

I remember what it
felt like though,

that warm, excitement
of the season.

Beyond that, well, actually
I do remember this one time.

Yeah, do tell.

So my parents were actually
struggling with this place.

It was a bookstore still,

and it had a bad couple
of years of sales,

and then there was
a fire next door,

which caused some damage here.

And, well, nobody wants
to buy smokey books.

So I wrote to Santa and
asked him to save the store.

No wonder you liked
Judith's letter.

What do you mean?

Well, she was looking out
for someone else's happiness,

not just her own, like you did.

You're giving me
too much credit.

I think I was just scared
at all the uncertainty.

Yeah, but still, you could've
wished for a stuffed animal

or a toy or something
to comfort you,

but, well, I guess you got
what you wished for, I assume.

We survived through it, yeah.

That's when my parents
turned it into a toy store.

And here we are,
years later, with crafts.

Is that why you do the
toy and book drive?

A homage to your
family's legacy?

You've figured me out.

No, it's actually an annual drive
the County has.

I just, I like to help out.

So how's the sweater
coming along?

Do you have any of those
fuzzy stick thingies?

- Pipe cleaners?
- Yeah.

- Here.
- Perfect.

And voila!

That is one of the
finest I have seen, yes.

We have to get our
pictures taken in these.

- What, no, no, no, I never...
- Come on, yes.


All right, one, two, three.

"I found a coin I think
my father would like,

"he died in the war though.

"For Christmas this year,

"could my present be you
giving this to my father?

"He liked collecting these".

A coin collector.

Here you go,
paint's on the table

and glue guns are
plugged in too.

Thank you.

Here, come look
through one of these.

Can't I make an ornament too?

Nope, and make sure
you look at every name.

I will.

- Because if you miss one...
- I get it.

Saved by the...
it's just you.


Hey, did you find something?

I wish, I still have
a few books to go through,

but I wondered about the coin.

What about it?

Well, Judith said her
dad was a collector,

coin collecting can be
a community of its own.

I was gonna follow up with a friend
and see if he has any ideas

on how to trace the
coin to its owner.

But Judith said she found
the coin, not her dad.

Well, found could
mean she bought it

or someone in her family.

What if there's a way to track down
who bought that particular coin?

Well, I guess it doesn't
hurt to look into it.

Do you mind if I borrow
it for a few hours?

Sure, just take care of it.

It might, well,
it might be worth a lot.

You bet, I'll be back soon.


You know, tonight
at the town square

there are a whole bunch
of Christmas activities,

sleigh rides, Christmas
lights, hot chocolate bar,

Santa, the whole big deal.

- You should go.
- I don't know.

You can still
celebrate Christmas

even if your
family's not around.

- I know that.
- Think on it then.

And, you know, maybe
take someone with you.

Keep searching!

And you can order
ahead for Christmas,

we just need orders no
later than the 21st.

Okay, thank you.

Hey, Eli.

- Good to see ya, Jonah.
- Good to see you too.

Can I get a raspberry
cream cheese pie?

The whole pie?
You going off the deep end?

Not at all.

I do have something that might
catch your interest, though.

Hundreds of these
were minted in 1895.

These are pretty sought after.

So it's valuable?

this is a proof coin,

so it wasn't released
to general circulation

like the rest of money is.

So how would somebody get their
hands on a coin like this?

Buying it from the mint,

inheriting it from
another collector,

maybe somebody made the mistake
of using it at face value

and that's how it entered
circulation that way.

I'm trying to help someone
track down the owner.

Is there a record of coins?

Something that says
who owns what.

Like a magic database
of coin collectors?

Too good to be true?

You know, you could check
the credit card records

of the store that sold it.

Not sure it was sold at a store.

Even if it was,
it'd be over 70 years ago.

Good luck.

Hey, you still want that pie?

Oh yeah, throw a couple
forks in there too.

All right.

Hey, you're back already.

Yeah, and I brought pie.


And the coin.

- What did you find out?
- Nothing helpful.

I was hoping collectors
had a community or a group

or some way to tell
who has what coin,

but it was just so long
ago it's a dead end.

Yeah, that's a challenge
with this all around.

That looks amazing.

What do you think?

You didn't want any, right?

I'm glad you like it,
it's my favorite.

Hang on, it's work.

Hello, yeah, about two
weeks we'll be, what?

No, that soon?

I can't get guys there
in time.

Yeah, I understand, I'll see
what I can do, yeah, bye.

I've got this client,

they have an event
early next week

and I've gotta finish
with my job before then.

How much more
work is there to do?

Well, it's down to cosmetics,

fixtures and paint and
a few other touch ups,

but I can't get
guys there in time.

They're on another job,
and it's the weekend.

So I gotta go.

Do you want some help?


I am not an expert builder,
but I can follow instructions.

No, I couldn't.

Oh no, please, you have helped
me so much with the letter

and you just brought me pie.

Yeah, but your store, I mean,
I can't have you shut down

because of me, it's
Christmas time.

No, Gabby's scheduled
to come in any minute.

Okay then, I've
just gotta pick up

some work clothes on the way.

Sounds good.

So you said something went
wrong here and set things back?

Yeah, right here.

I hired a plumbing contractor

who didn't properly seal
a pipe, so disaster.

Well, shouldn't the plumber have
checked his work or something?

Yeah, well, it got past him.
It got past me too.

And he refused to fix it
or make things right,

he just tried to pass the blame.

So of course the owner
here wasn't happy, so...

So you're left to
pick up the pieces.

Yeah, well, more like
patch up the pieces.

- That sounds...
- Expensive?

Well, I was gonna say
not fun, but...

Well, the work isn't bad,

but paying for someone
else's mistake, yeah.

Well, point me wherever
you want me to start.

I am sure we can get through
this faster together.

All right, well, why
don't you wear this

and you get started here
and I'll work on the trim.

Sounds good.

If had your own sign.

Painting a tree.

Well, thank you.

You have no idea how
much time this saves me.

It's not all done yet, though.

No, but it gets me closer.

Now I can finish the rest
myself without losing sleep.


Seriously, thank you.

I'm just glad I was able to
do something to help you too.

I think I at least
owe you dinner.

Actually, I have a better idea.

Gabby told me about this place,

it sounded like a
nice break from work.

It definitely is.

You can just feel
the giddiness here.

Why is that with Christmas?

I don't know, maybe it reminds
us of when we were young.

Yeah, you have any
favorite holiday memories

from when you were younger?

Being with my family.

Didn't you say you
were on your own

this year for Christmas?

I did.

Well, that's no good;
come to my place.

Oh no, I couldn't, I
don't wanna intrude.

No, you wouldn't intrude,
it'd be nice to have you.

I mean, you can't be
alone for Christmas

when what you love about it
is being with other people.

Okay, but only if you let
me help with the dinner.

Perfect, I definitely
need help with that.

Oh look, kids can write
their own letter to Santa.

Well, not just kids.

You'll write one too, won't you?

Yeah, why not?

What are you gonna write?

We're not supposed to talk
about that kinda thing,

it's supposed to be a secret.

No, that's birthday wishes.

Well, maybe I wanna
keep mine a secret.

Okay, okay.

You all right there?

Yeah, I just wanna
get the wording right.

Hey, hey, no peaking!

I wouldn't dare.

Yeah, right.

Okay, done!

Should we send them off?


Okay, on three?




We did it.

We did, we did it!

Thank you.

Thank you.

Now that's a hot chocolate.

So what did you put in
your letter to Santa?

I asked to find Judith
in time for Christmas.

I thought you might.

What about you?

I'm not gonna tell.


Well, just in case it is
like a birthday wish thing.

Well then why did you ask me?

Can't blame a guy
for being curious.

Well, that is a double standard.

Yep, I can admit to that.

Okay, so don't tell me
what you put in the letter,

but what's number two
on your Christmas list

that you didn't
write to Santa about?

Okay, second best thing...

Is have my bills paid.

Oh yeah, that's not exciting.

Well, it is if you have to pay

for a certain
plumber's mistakes.

Sorry, but you have to have
something that you want.

All right, I mean,
what are you looking for?

Something that I can have
wrapped and put under my tree?

Sure, something tangible.

Okay, a good book.

A classic like
"A Christmas Carol"?


No Dickens then.

What are your favorites?

Books that have been
made into movies.

You don't even read
the books, do you?

You just watch the
movie versions.

That way I can tell
if I like it or not

without spending
the time to read it.

All right then, what
movies do you like?

Spy ones.

Action junkie?

Yes and no.

I like the intrigue
and subplots.

I know, I know, I have
lowered your opinion of me.


I'm sure I have.

You were hoping I was
gonna say something deeper.

Nope, doesn't matter.

I just like learning
more about you.

You do?

Yeah, yeah, I do.

Come on, everyone,
time to see Santa!

Jonah, good morning!

Hey, sorry to bother you.

No, not at all, I'm just
taking a quick break.

Been making a list of all
the Judiths in the yearbook.

Any Judith Franklins?

No, it could be a
complete waste of time,

but thought it
might come in handy

if we find something else.

What are you up to?

I'm looking around
my kitchen realizing

I probably need food if I plan
on making Christmas dinner.

That would be a good assumption.

I don't know what
to cook or to buy.

Would you mind brainstorming
with me on that?

Sure, yeah, I just have
one quick stop to make first.

- Hey, thanks for coming!
- Hi, I brought ideas.

Excellent, I need all
the help I can get.

- Come on in.
- Great.

Well, what do you suggest?

Any favorites your parents like?

They're pretty traditional.

One year I recommended steaks
and my mom about lost it.

Okay, ham maybe?

Turkey's always good,
but after Thanksgiving,

some people are done
with turkey for awhile.

What's easier?

Ham, definitely.

Ham, perfect.

Okay, what about sides?

Do rolls count?

Here, do your parents
like sweet potatoes

or regular potatoes, casseroles?

Sweet potatoes, sure.

Okay, any other
favorite veggies?

My mom makes this
amazing phyllo dough tart

with mushrooms
and a sauce on it.

Still don't know what it really is,
but Christmas-only tradition.

Mushrooms for Christmas?

Hey, don't knock
it till you try it!

Come on, there must
be something special

you'd want as part
of the dinner.

Actually, there is something.

That raspberry cream cheese pie.

Okay, I will bring that then.

But don't think that gets
you out of helping me cook.

No, no, course not.

Well, thanks for your help.

Don't lose that, half the stress
is knowing what you'll cook.

And the other half
is actually cooking it.



So what are you up to today?

I actually need
to pick up donations

at a few drop-off spots and
take them to the County.

Well, I can give you a hand.

You don't have to do that.

I'd like to.

- You sure?
- Yeah, let's go.


So what are you up to today?

I actually need
to pick up donations

at a few drop-off spots and
take them to the County.

Well, I can give you a hand.

You don't have to do that.

I'd like to.

- You sure?
- Yeah, let's go.

Well, a lot came in here!

Do we take the whole
box or just empty it?

Well, there's still a
few days until Christmas,

so I say we just
empty it for now.

All right.

Have you finished going
through the yearbooks yet?

Getting there.

I have this idea in my mind
about what Judith looks like.

Is that funny?

No, I don't think so.

I go over the yearbook
photos and I see certain ones

and I get excited if
it fits that image.

Until you see the name?

Yeah, this whole thing's
kind of strange, isn't it?

Well, I think there's
a good reason for it.

Be honest with me,

do you think we're
gonna find her in time?

I don't know if we'll find her
by Christmas,

but I do believe we'll find her.

So how many bags
of toys and books

did we collect this year?

In our store, a good
four large bags,

but a lot more came in from
other spots throughout town.

It was nice of
Jonah to help you.

Yeah, I wish...


I think Jonah's in a bit
of trouble.


Like, money trouble.

He talks about it like he's okay
and he can handle it,

but I think it's worse
than what he's saying.

That's rough, he's
such a good guy.

Yeah, and I wanna be able to help him,
but I'm not sure...

If he'd accept?

He seems like the type who
wants to earn his own way.

Yeah, and I like that about him.

But then how can I help if...

Have an idea?

A little inspiration, yeah.

- Well, hi.
- Hi.

I'm sorry, we're not open for
services for a few more weeks.

I know.
Are you the pastor here then?

I am.

I'm Mandy, I actually
have a favor to ask you.

- Well, have a seat.
- Thank you.

Oh, come on.

What, the coin!

Hey, Mandy, are you okay?

The coin, I have
looked everywhere!

It's gone?

Well, I thought I put
it back in the box.

Is there anywhere else
you might've put it?

No, I kept it in here.

I can't believe it's gone.

Have you looked around
the store? Maybe it fell.

Well, that's what I thought.

I dropped some stuff,
but I have been scouring

through here all morning and...

What about Gabby, does
she have any ideas?

I called earlier and nothing.

What if I find Judith?

Without the coin,
how can I even face her?

I wouldn't worry about that.

Hey, we'd be lucky
if we even find her.

All right, we're gonna keep
looking, don't give up.

It's just, it's worth a lot.

For a regular coin, it
wouldn't be a big deal,

but that is not the case.

It could change her life.

I know,
could change anyone's life.

All right,
when was the last time you saw it?

You had just borrowed it.

Right, and I brought it back after
I showed my collector friend.

Right, and then
I put it back in the box.

And nothing since then?

No, did you come
back for it at all?

Maybe to take a second look?

No, and I'd never take
it without asking you.

It's just, I know you said
money's kind of an issue

right now and the
coin could help, so...

Are you, Mandy, I'd never
do something like that!

I'm surprised
you think that of me.

No, look, sorry, just forget it.

I gotta go.


I gotta clean up that job site.

No, look, sorry, I
shouldn't have said that.


Jonah, wait!

It's not like
I was accusing him.

- Sounds like it was.
- You weren't there.

No, which is too bad because
that would've been interesting.

I did go over the store
with a fine-tooth comb

and couldn't find
the coin either.

You sure he didn't take it?

I don't know.

Wait, do you think he took it?


I'm totally frazzled
and not thinking straight.

What do I do?

About the coin or Jonah?


- Well, to start, maybe apologize.
- I tried.

He was upset, understandably so.

Yeah, I get that.

I hurt him though.

And it helped having the
extra set of eyes and ears

for the letter and the
yearbooks, yearbooks.

What about them?

I was supposed to return
them to the librarian.

She is not gonna
be happy with me.

I'm sure she'll be fine.

I don't even have all the books.

- Hi.
- Hi.

I realized I never returned
the yearbooks today

back to the schools, I've
just finished my part.

Did you find anything?

No, the librarian
at Everett High

was especially anxious,
I should get those back to her.

I think you have those ones?

I haven't finished yet.

I'm driving by the high school
for work tomorrow,

so I can drop 'em off.

You don't have to do that.

It's fine.

Okay, thanks.

Well, my food's probably
burning up on the stove,

so I've gotta go.

Right, see you later.


Those are late.

I know, we're really sorry.

She promised.

Yeah, well, it took longer
to go through than we thought.

I actually have a few
more I need to go through.

Do you mind if I just
sit down while I finish?

I have a class
coming in here soon.

I'll go as fast as I can.

Fine, but make sure
your cell phone is off.

You got it.

Victor Franklin.

What are you doing?

Going over the
war records again.

Maybe you're putting
too much pressure

on yourself with this thing?

I am not giving up.

I know, but finding Judith
could be special any time.

You should stop so you
can enjoy Christmas.

I am, I ordered myself
something online last night.

It'll arrive Christmas Eve.

Yeah, that's the spirit.

It's not a bad thing
to stay busy anyway.

It is when you're trying to distract
yourself from the real problem.

I keep thinking maybe there is
something that I have missed.

I don't know, something in
the letter perhaps.

- Gabby?
- What?

I need a flashlight.


What is it?

It was here!

Okay, when I checked everywhere,
I guess I missed that spot.

Me too.

Guess that means Jonah
really is in the clear.



Hi, thanks for meeting me here.

I have something to show you.


It fell in the floor vent.

Glad you found it.

Me too.

I never should've suggested

you had anything to do
with it being lost.

I took the books back
to Everett High School.

Merry Christmas, Mandy.

What's this?

"Mrs. Reeves,
our favorite English teacher

"with Senior Victor Franklin

"and his cousin,
sophomore Judith Lewis".

So it has to be her,
what's next then?

I find everything I
can on Judith Lewis.

Great, how?

Her father, you don't have
plans tonight, do you?

Well, no, but I was...

Great, come on over and
I'll make us dinner.

Lucky me.

Have you seen these war records?

All these soldiers.

I know, it reminds me
of Judith and her family,

the Christmas that
she wrote the letter.

Here's a Lewis.

Really, I just found one too!

Paul Lewis.

Nathan Lewis.

Okay, I guess
I shouldn't be surprised

that there is more
than one Lewis.

- Should we make a pile?
- Yes.

I didn't think
you'd get this far.

I wouldn't have, not
without Jonah at least,

and you of course.

Of course.

It was nice of him to
give you what he found.


Are you mad at him?

No, it's more the
other way around.

I think I let it
become too much.


Our relationship, friendship,

acquaintances, really.

He was just a nice stranger

who helped me for
a little while.

Nice-looking stranger.

Does it matter?

Depends on how you feel.

It's out of my control.

He has his life,
and I have mine.

And they're not going in
the same direction anymore.

And besides, it's Christmas!

We should focus on that.

And this...

Found another one,
Colin Lewis.

Hey, Jonah, how are you?

Good, thanks, moving
along well here.

Can hardly wait to
clean up all the dust.

Yeah, it gets
frustrating I'm sure.

Well, as eager as I am

to see the church
back in operation,

make sure you get some rest,
okay, enjoy Christmas.

I will, thanks.

This is for you.

What's this?

It's the balance of what
I owe you for your work.

I'm not done,
you don't have to...

I know,
I figured you could use it.

I... thank you.

Merry Christmas.

Hey, Pastor, how did you know?

A beautiful angel told me.

"This is one of the few
spy novels I've read.

"It's a first edition,
which seems less impressive

"since it was published
just a couple of years ago.

"It's not my usual vintage find,
but I loved it.

"I hope you will too, Mandy".

Merry Christmas,
what can I do for you?

Hi, I am trying to track down
a woman named Judith Lewis,

would've been born
in the late 1930s.

- I remember you.
- Yep, I've made progress though.

I know her dad is
one of these men.

Well, is she deceased?

I don't know, could we
check for a birth record?

No, that's private information
reserved for family members,

which I assume you are not.

What else could I look for
to narrow down who she is?

Please, this is a matter of at
least sentimental importance.

Well, you could look up
a marriage license,

if you know the father's name,
they list that on the records.

Even if he is deceased at
the time of the marriage?

Yep, better hurry though,
we're closing early today

and then we don't
reopen until the 26th.

What do we do?

All right, I'm narrowing
the search to marriages

in the 1950s to '70s.

Give me the name of
the first father.

Paul Lewis.

He's listed under the marriages
of two children,

Dorothy and Samuel.

Nope, try Nathan Lewis next.

Father of Joan.

Any other children?

Nope, give me another.

Okay, Donald Lewis died in 1942.

Nothing under that name.

Okay, try Colin Lewis next.

He's listed under one
marriage for Judith Lewis.

Really, Judith Lewis?

Married in 1957
to William Cross.

You want a copy of this?

You gonna pass out or something?

No, no, I am fine,
and yes, I would love a copy!

Excuse me, merry Christmas.

- I found her.
- Seriously?

Yep, her dad is Colin,
her mother is Ruth,

and Judith married a
William Cross; it's her.

You're sure?

I checked all the Lewis
soldiers just to be safe,

and she's the only one.

And she's still alive?

I even asked the clerk for
a possible death certificate

for Judith, and there is none.

The clerk was about to toss
me out by the time I left,

I think she had an office
Christmas party to get to.

This is her.

I know.

So Judith Cross, you
just have to find her.


It's the 23rd of December.

I know, I have a
lot of work to do.

Guess that means you could
use some help till closing time?

Is that okay?

I would've made up an excuse
if it wasn't.

You are the best!
I will be at home.

I'll come over after
I close up here.

Thank you!

No, it's okay, it sounds like
I have the wrong Judith Cross.

Thanks for chatting though.

Okay, buh-bye.

How many more?

Keeping it within the County,
I'm looking at three more.

Beyond that, well, let's just
hope she's like most people

in the area and loves it here.

So when you find her...

I like how optimistic
you are now!

Are you gonna tell
Jonah about her?

Would you?


I want to,
I'll agonize over that

after I've found
the right Judith Cross.


Hi, I'm Mandy, I'm
looking for Judith Cross.

I found something
that belongs to her,

but I'm not sure if I
have the right person.

If you could call me back,

I would really appreciate it,
thank you.

What are you doing for
Christmas Eve tomorrow?

I think I'm just gonna have
a quiet night to myself,

maybe watch a movie,
actually use the fireplace.

Sounds cozy.

And Christmas Day?

Maybe I'll make it a movie
marathon that day too.

You could come hang out
with me and my family.

You do not have to do that.

I'm just saying you might want
a break and some company.

I'm pathetic, aren't I?

I purposely did not say that!

This is the first
time you've held back,

that's how I know it's
a sympathy invitation.

Fine, but promise me,

if you feel like it,
you'll come over?

Okay, thank you.


Hi, we got a call
from this number

about something that
belongs to my mother?

Your mother, is
she Judith Cross?


Hi, yes, thank you
for calling me back.

Hey, Mom.

Merry Christmas Eve!

Are you ready for Christmas?

Me, you're the one
doing all the work.

I can't tell you how nice it is

not to worry about
cooking this year.

Yeah, well, you just relax.

I have everything planned.

Good, now don't forget

to thaw the turkey in
advance, or the ham.

What are we having?

Ham, and I'll make sure
that it's thawed and warm

by the time you get here.

Is your friend still coming?

I'm not sure.

She may have had
something come up.

Come up?

It's Christmas.

Yeah, well, you don't
have to worry about that.

You just drive safely and
I'll see you here tomorrow.

All right now, love you.

Love you too.


Sorry, I was about to knock.

I wasn't expecting you.

No, no, I just thought
I would stop by.

Here, I thought maybe you
could use this for tomorrow.

Thank you.

- I was...
- I...

Sorry, go ahead.

Well, the pastor at the church,

he paid me ahead of schedule.

I was wondering if...?

That was you.

Sorry, shouldn't have meddled.

It was the best thing
I could think to do

to make things better.

Thank you.

Well, it was the pastor.

Thanks for caring though.

I found Judith.

Oh, you did?

Yeah, I'm on my way there now.

I thought maybe you'd like
to come with?

Well, I've got some
last-minute Christmas errands

- I really need to...
- Yeah, of course.

I just thought I'd check.

Do you want me to come?

Yes, I do.

I didn't tell you everything
that I put in my letter to Santa.

What do you mean?

Well, I asked that
I would find Judith,

but I also asked that you and I

could give her the
letter together.

Well, let me put
this in the fridge.

All right, you ready?


Hi, I'm Mandy, we
spoke on the phone.

Oh yes, my mom,
she just took my kids

down to the town square
for the tree lighting.

I tried to stop her, but I
didn't wanna give away why.

Should we wait here?

I don't know how long
they'll be.

If you don't mind,
I'm sure they're easy to find.

Her daughter said
she was wearing

a dark blue coat
with a pink scarf.


How about right there?

No pink scarf.


How about, no.

Well, come on,
let's go look over here.


Maybe we should split up?

Yeah, good idea.


Good evening, everyone.

In just 15 minutes we'll have

our grand Christmas Eve
tree lighting ceremony.

- Any luck?
- No, you?


Could we have missed her?

I don't know, it is
getting cold out.

Maybe they went back early?

Wait, look!

Have you seen him?

Yeah. He was
right over there somewhere.

- Okay, let's just go.
- Live reindeer.

Let's go!

Excuse me, are you Judith Cross?

Yes, yes I am.

Why don't the two of you find
something warm to drink, okay?

All right.
Okay, thank you, Grandma!

Be right back!

So you're Mandy?

Yes, and this is Jonah.

We have been looking for you

to return something
that's yours.

What's this?

Christmas isn't until
tomorrow, you know.

I couldn't wait till then.

Please, go ahead and open it.

All right then, well, don't
tell my grandchildren,

they'll wanna open up
everything tonight.

You know, kids, no
matter what age they are,

they're excited for presents.

When you were a young girl,

do you remember writing
letters to Santa?

Sure, I wrote many.

And there was this one
time when you wrote to him,

not to ask something
for yourself,

but for him to give a
gift to someone else?

My father!

Victor's book.

Jonah and I came
across the book,

and this letter was inside it.

Look at my handwriting!

As soon as I read it,

I knew it was something
you'd want back.

And the coin too.

I found this silver dollar
after my father died.

I knew he would love
it for his collection.

I missed him so much.

I thought that if anyone
could give it to my father,

it would be Santa.

Well, it's worth a decent
amount of money now.

You're gonna wanna
keep that safe.

Thank you!

This is so amazing.

"Dear Santa,

"I have been good all year,

"and tried to help my mother.

"I know we won't have
much for Christmas.

"That is just fine by me,
but could you help me?

"I found a coin I think
my father would like.

"He died in the war though.

"For Christmas this year,
could my present

"be you giving this
to my father?

"He liked collecting these.

"I miss him,

"and I know he would love it".

Thank you.

Thank you so much.

We welcome you all out

to this special Christmas
Eve tree lighting ceremony.

We're so proud of our community

and look forward to spending
this special time with you.

Thank you for
bringing me with you.

This wouldn't have
happened without you.

I think you would've
found a way.

You believed in this
and how special it was.

You wouldn't have given up.

I don't know,

but it was certainly
better having you involved.

Well, maybe faster.

More fun.

I don't think the
librarian would agree.

Why did you volunteer to help
me that day at the church?

Nobody would've
given that letter

a second thought like you did.

They might've thrown it away,

told a friend about
it as a cute story,

gotten rich off the
coin, but not you.

Not you either.

And no one else
would've helped me.

Yeah they would have,

if they saw what I see in you.

It's the time you've
all been waiting for!

Now count down with me
as we light our glorious tree!

Do you wanna know what I put
in my letter to Santa?


I asked for you to love me.

Five, four,

three, two, one!

Merry Christmas, everyone!

Looks like we both got
our Christmas wishes.

Merry Christmas.

Merry Christmas.

You still coming to my house
for dinner tomorrow night?

I would love to.


Have you even started on
any of the recipes yet?

I haven't even gone
to the grocery store.

At least we have pie.

by VaVooM