“I don’t care about Christmas.” Eddy kicks the kitchen stool. “It won’t be the same, without Gramma.” Eddy’s heart feels frozen—it’s been that way ever since Gramma died.
Darren sighs. “Yeah, it’s been tough, buddy.” He kneels beside his brother so he can see right into Eddy’s eyes. “Remember Gramma’s Christmas cookies?” Darren asks. “Let’s make some Melting moments.”
Eddy thinks of Gramma’s laugh when he got flour on his nose. “OK… I guess,” he says and reaches for Gramma’s recipe box.
“Let’s look under C for Cookies,” Darren says. He flips through the cards. “No…. Maybe under D for Desserts—or M for Moments?” He flips through more cards. “I can’t find it!”
“Look under E,” Eddy says.
“Why would Gramma put a cookie recipe under E?” Darren asks. But surprise! That’s where it is.
“Awesome!” Darren says. “E is for Eddy.”
Eddy helps Darren get stuff out. As he presses sugar into the soft cream cheese, Eddy’s heart softens too…
The night before Christmas, Eddy watches lights twinkle on their real tree. A red skirt that Gramma had sewn hides the tree’s bucket. The chair where Gramma told Eddy stories about Christmas, when she was a girl, rocks when he passes. Pine scents the air. “Tell me the one about the little tree that wouldn’t stand up?” Eddy asks.
Darren settles into the rocking chair and lifts Eddy on his knee. Then Darren repeats the words from Gramma’s childhood. Eddy’s heart begins to stir.
On Christmas morning, Eddy knows Santa has visited. Packages peek from his stocking. Boxes circle the tree. And crumbs are all that’s left of the Melting moments Eddy had left on Gramma’s tray for the jolly elf.
Lots of presents have E for Eddy on tags tied to their ribbons. Eddy rips the paper off these ones. Toys from Santa dot the carpet—plastic blocks, a fire engine that really works, a dinosaur kit! Eddy reaches for the dino.
“What about this gift, Eddy?” Darren lifts one from behind the tree. “To Eddy,” Darren reads from the tag. “Story-time gems for a special boy.”
Eddy tears off the paper and holds up his present. “It’s Gramma’s book bag! The one we always took to the library!” Eddy’s heart glows.
“Well, look at that!” remarks Darren. “What’s inside?”
Eddy sees Mommy and Dad smile at each other. He lifts the flap and peeks in. “Books!” Eddy opens the cover of the littlest book from Gramma’s bag. He sees a big E on the first page. “Hey, new books of my very own. See? Here’s my name—Eddy!” He stops to study the words again. “I can learn to read now.” He grins. “I know one word already…
L . O. V. E. See? Love.”
Darren takes a book from Eddy’s lap.“Yes, Eddy—it says, Love from Mommy and Dad.”
Eddy grins again. “Thanks Mommy, thanks Dad. Gramma’s book bag is the best! Can we read a story, now?”
So Darren begins.
Eddy leans back and listens to his brother’s voice. His sorrow melts as the farthest corner of his heart creaks open to let in the warmth of Christmas. At that moment, Gramma slips in too, right along side… where she lives on, and on, happily ever after.
Wishing all our readers a very merry Christmas and every happiness in 2014…
Love from Vinny, Will, Isla, and Sharon xo
Mood Foods, a study guide for this story and the related nutrition info that accompanies it in Vinny’s book