Christmas Eve with Grandpa

When I was a little girl, Christmas Eve was spent at Grandma & Grandpa Smith’s. And at some point in the day or evening, Grandpa would pull out the old, worn Sears catalog and gather us children up. He’d turn to the candy section of the catalog and the magic would start.

He would start with warming up his hands by rubbing them together. The key to this magic was to keep Grandpa’s hands warm. Then he’d rub his hands across the page. He would ask us to feel the page. Could we feel the candy trying to get out? Yes, Grandpa. We can feel it. Then he would rub a bit more. But still no candy. So, his hands mustn’t be warm enough. So we need to blow on them. Us kids would get to blow on his hands to get to warm them up. Then he’d rub his hands across the page again. “Can we feel the candy yet?” Still mustn’t be warm enough. So, he’d put his hands in his pockets to get them really warm. And then he would rub, rub, rub his hands across that page of candy goodies.

And like real magic, the candy would start flying from the page. Hard candies wrapped in cellophane. Little candy bars. All kinds of candy. None of it exactly what was on the page from the Sears catalog, but that didn’t matter to the group of children gathered at his feet. We just wanted candy.

My grandfather, the magician.

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