Finally, all the presents had been wrapped and put under the tree. The stockings were hung, and a big plate of cookies and cheese was set out for Santa Mouse. Now it was time for Nana Mousekin’s Christmas Eve Story:
“A long, long time ago,” she began, “when your papa was just a teeny, tiny baby--can you imagine that?”
“NO!” said Mimi and Momo, for although they heard the same story every year, they still could not believe that Papa Mouse had ever been a little baby!
“We had just moved to Sassafras Valley,” Nana Mousekin continued. “and we were nearly out of sugar, milk, and cheese. But it was two days before Christmas, and the nearby shops were closed! So your Grandpa set off for the only store that was open, which was two whole hours away. He had a good map, and he promised to be back for supper. I busied myself in the kitchen, and your baby papa played on his blanket.
But a few hours later, the sky darkened and big scary clouds swept in from the west, bringing howling winds. Then the snow started to fall--huge thick snowflakes--as big as teacups! Before long, the whole world was covered, and I could only see white out the window.
I put the baby to bed and tried to stay calm, but I was worried sick about Grandpa. Was he lost in the storm? Would he freeze to death far from home? If he did make his way back, would he find the house, so buried in snow? I wanted to go out and call for him, but the front door was completely blocked with snow. As hard as I pushed, I could not make it budge. If Grandpa did return, how would he even get inside?
All night I sat fretting by the fire, until I must have dozed off in the wee early morning.
Suddenly, I was startled awake by a great thump overhead. ‘The house is falling in!’ I screamed, as great heaps of snow fell down the chimney. But right then there was a second great thump, and guess who landed in the fireplace?”
“Grandpa Mousekin!” said Momo.
“That’s right,” said Nana. “And guess who followed right behind him?”
“Santa Mouse!” said Mimi.
“He had rescued your Grandpa from the storm and delivered him home, supplies and all, safe and sound!”
“Wow!” exclaimed Momo. “What did he look like?”
“His eyes,” Nana remembered, “how they twinkled! His dimples, how merry! His cheeks were like roses; his nose like a cherry; His droll little mouth was drawn up like a bow, and his whiskers and chin were as white as the snow. He had a broad face and a little round belly that shook when he laughed—like a bowl full of jelly!”
“Did you offer him something to eat?” asked Mama Mouse.
“I put out a plate of my Special Pinwheel Cookies,” said Nana, “and he munched down two right away.” ‘Delicious!’ he declared, brushing crumbs from his beard. ‘But if it’s not too much trouble’, and he asked for something else to go with them.”
“Cheese!” said Momo.
“That’s right,” said Papa, “that’s how we know that Santa Mouse likes a little cheese with his cookies.”
“He didn’t stay long,” Nana concluded, “because he had so much to do. He knew the storm would slow things down—that’s why he had started a day early, and that was very lucky for us, wasn’t it? He went back up the chimney, got into his sleigh, and we heard him exclaim as he flew out of sight:
‘Happy Christmas to all and to all a good night!’”
from Christmas With the Mousekins - A Story with Crafts, Recipes, Poems and More! by Maggie Smith