Christmas Next Door (2017) Script

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Nice decorations.

I think you missed a spot.

I can still see a piece of your lawn.

Well I like your decorations too.

In case you hadn't noticed it is Christmas time.

How can you not notice on this street?

Me, I like to do my own thing.

Which is...?

Hmm.

Nothing I guess.

Huh.

Have a good day.

Okay April, one more decoration and you will officially be over the top.

Umm, there can never be too many decorations.

Awwwww!

Oh my God!

You still have these?

Yeah forever!

Do you remember why Mom and Dad gave me these?

Yes I do.

It was so that you could get your picture taken with Santa Claus even though you were too old to sit on his lap at the mall.

You cried all the way home.

No, I'm sorry.

You can never be too old to sit on Santa's lap.

Oh Elaine, here.

Take a picture for me to send to mom.

Okay.

She will love it.

Okay, one, two, three.

Love that.

Where is that coming from?

Two doors down.

It's my new neighbor.

From what I can tell he's a real...

Yeah, If it's not him and his buddies, it's him and his sports car.

Oh.

It's a shame you can't choose your neighbors.

No ...d he's the only one on this entire block who won't put decorations in his front yard.

Like not even a little bit.

Really?

Nothing?

Nothing!

Like not even one thing!

So ...w about that glass of wine you promised me?

That I can do.

Mom's gonna be really happy to hear you have a boyfriend.

What?!

He looks really cute in this picture.

I love you.

Oh they're going deep!

Here it is!

Come on!

What?!

Throw the fly!

That's terrible.

Pass me one of the slices that have pepperoni.

Hey Ted, how are the kids?

Doing well.

Speaking of ...yone know where you can find one of those talking Furry Murray toys?

Yeah forget it man.

Those are the hottest toy this year!

I know, my kid wants one for Christmas.

We can't find them anywhere.

My wife found one online.

But you don't wanna know how much we paid for that thing, man.

I think you're already paying for it, buddy.

Really?

Seriously.

Whoa, whoa, whoa, whoa.

You do not know what you're missing, my friend.

When you see the smiles on their faces on Christmas morning, it makes it worth it.

Says the guy wearing a Santa hat.

Get this thing off.

It's not like I don't like kids.

I'm crazy about my sister's.

Then why'd you buy this big house?

More wall space for my book jackets.

So, Uncle Eric, what are you doing for Christmas?

Going skiing again?

Not this year.

Bridget's not much for outdoor sports.

Wait a minute...who's Bridget?

His latest girlfriend.

Whoa.

Pump the brakes.

She's not technically a girlfriend.

We've only been going out for a few months.

Plus, I gotta stick around and finish my book.

Deadline's the end of the month.

How's it going?

Meh ...u know...

Another best-seller I take it?

Who wants another beer?

Got anymore of that guacamole?

Yeah, that was good stuff.

Where'd you get it?

I made it.

It's one of the recipes from my book.

Oh yeah, that's right.

You didn't read it, did you?

You're going to make someone a great wife someday.

The game's back on.

So, there is something that I want to talk to you about.

Did Steve propose?!

No.

If he had we'd be drinking champagne right now.

Well, tell me, what is it?

What do you wanna tell me?

Okay, it's about the orchestra.

So Ivan Samuels is retiring at the end of the season, and they're starting auditions soon.

And...?

Why are you telling me?

Because I think you should audition.

Wait, no.

Are you serious?

No!

No,no,no,no,no ...u know what happens to me when I audition.

So you get the hiccups.

I bet you they wouldn't even notice.

Do you remember the ninth grade recital auditions?

Oh, yeah.

Oh I mean there's gotta be a way to get over that.

No.

I have tried everything.

Just think about it.

How awesome it would be if you got in, and we could play together.

I mean that's always been our dream.

Look, there is a saying.

"Those who can, do, and those who can't, teach."

Look, you're a good teacher April, but you're a great violinist.

You're just afraid to find that out.

No.

I am afraid to audition.

There is a clear difference there.

Enough about me.

How are you, and Steve?

How's the restaurant?

Good.

It's his first Christmas since he bought the restaurant, so he's just working around the clock.

Hey, Mom.

How are you?

I'm fine, but your niece and nephew were a little disappointed you didn't make it over here yesterday.

I told you I would try and make it by, but it turns out some of the guys came by for the game, and well... you know.

How about stopping by today?

Sorry, I can't.

I got a meeting with my agent, and then I have some writing I need to get done.

When are Dana and Bruce coming home?

Your sister and brother in-law will be home the day after tomorrow.

I'll try to make it over there before then.

I promise.

Eric, don't let the kids down.

They want to spend time with their uncle.

Don't make me feel guilty or anything.

Isn't that what mothers do best?

See you soon, sweetheart.

Alright.

Bye mom.

Another extension?

Look Eric, we've already gotten you two.

I don't think the publisher will go for it.

Why not?

I'm one of their best-selling authors, right?

I'll give it a try.

Just between us, what's taking you so long?

I mean, it's not like you're writing War and Peace.

What's that supposed to mean?

Oh c'mon, Eric.

I've repped you for ten years.

These books are pretty formulaic.

Honestly, why are you having such a hard time all of a sudden?

Honestly?

I think I'm finally getting tired of writing the same thing.

No, that's not good.

Nuh-uh.


Oh, uh ...od job sweetie.

Just remember you wanna keep the bow between the fingerboard and the bridge, It's very important.

Let's try it again.


Hey!

She did great today.

Great!

Did you have fun, hun?

Afternoon, April.

Conrad.

I really must commend you on your decorations this year.

Aw.

Thank you.

Now if we could just get everyone else on board.

Oh.

I think he's a lost cause.

I mean would it really be that much trouble to...

Afternoon, Mr. Redford.

I'm glad I ran into you.

Really?

Why's that?

The neighbors have generously offered to decorate your front yard.

You won't even have to lift a finger.

Thanks anyway, but I happen to like my house just the way it is.

That's why I bought it.

Maybe just a couple of strings...

No thanks.

I'm good.

Hey, Nick.

How's the writing coming?

It's not.

Well, you better find some inspiration fast, because the publisher says no more extensions.

Uh ...u alright?

Oh just a moment.

Excellent, beautiful presentation.

Oh hey, sorry I am late, boss.

Boss.

I could get used to that.

Don't get used to that.

So what's up?

The groom had cold feet.

I had to start The Wedding March three times before he walked down the aisle.

Well I've got to um...

Coming.

Your blind date had to leave.

What blind date?

Oh, he's a friend of Steve's.

He's an ER doctor.

We thought you two might hit it off, but he got called out on an emergency, so...

Mhm ...n't you two ever give stop?

No.

Looks like a full house tonight.

Minus one.

Oh ...other potential husband down the drain.

Isn't this everything I told you it would be?

Yeah, it's very...

Romantic.

I know.


I think that's my neighbor.

Where?

The violinist.

The teacher with those all those annoying students?

I didn't say they were all bad.

So are we doing anything for New Years?

I haven't even thought about Christmas.

All I can think about these days is the looming deadline for my book.

Well maybe we can go to the Black and White Ball at the Walker Museum?

Yeah ...out that...

Any requests?

We'd appreciate it if you could play at someone else's table.

We're just trying to have a quiet dinner.

Oh of course.

I'm so sorry.

I didn't mean to disturb you.

The way my students obviously have.

I guess she heard.

What was that all about?

That's my neighbor.

You know the one who won't decorate for Christmas.

Oh.

Guess he's not much of a music lover.

He is kind of cute, though.

Hello?

Mom?

Hey, how's my favorite daughter?

As your only daughter that joke never gets old.

Shouldn't you be getting on a plane right now?

Yeah, uh, about that ...r flight was cancelled.

Actually, all of the flights were cancelled.

Their is a massive snowstorm and everything's been shut down.

Oh my.

Listen, how are the kids?

Good, good.

They're sleeping.

Bruce is on the phone trying to find out when we might get a flight back.

Don't you worry about anything.

They can stay with me as long as you need.

They're saying it's gonna be four or five days, maybe even a week, before the airport re-opens.

A week?

Oh my goodness!

Mom, did you hear that?

I did.

We might not make it back in time for Christmas.

We've never missed a Christmas with the kids before.

Sarah, do you mind looking after the kids for another few days?

Of course not.

You know I love to have them.

Thanks mom.

Love you.

Bye!

Take care you two.

Whew!

I did not think we were gonna make it out of there in one piece.

Remind me not to do anymore Christmas shopping.

At least for a while.

I can't believe after all that shopping, and I still don't have all of my presents.

I mean I'm done.

The last two things I bought were for me.

Oh.

Do you have time for tea?

The Carlyle is doing their special Christmas tea again this year.

Oh I wish I could, but I have to go to rehearsal.

Noooo.

Oh, before I forget, I have something for you.

What is it?

It's an early Christmas present.

I don't understand.

What's is it?

It's the date and time of your audition.

I didn't agree to this.

What have you got to lose?

Oh, are we still on for skating this week?

Uh, yeah.

Okay.

Bye.

Hi, mom.

Hello.

Before you say anything I was gonna try and make it over there later today to see the kids...

You have to come over now.

Why, what's wrong?

Oh, I think it's the flu.

I'm feeling achy all over, and I think I have a fever.

And I'm in no condition to look after the kids, so you're gonna have to come and pick them up.

I can take them for a day, but aren't Dana and Bruce gonna be back tomorrow?

No.

They're stuck in Norway.

What does that mean exactly?

Haven't you been listening to the news?

No, I've been trying to write a book.

Northern Europe is covered in a blanket of snow they're calling the snow storm of the century.

So, you're gonna to have to come over here and pick up the kids, and look after them until I'm better, or until Dana and Bruce get back.

Whichever comes first.

Eric?

Are you still there?

Yeah.

How long does a flu usually last?

Oh.

At my age, who knows?

And why would anyone hold a business conference in Norway in the middle of the winter?

Well you're gonna have to ask Bruce that when you see him.

Look honey, the kids are all packed up.

You just get here as soon as you can.

Cheque please.

I brought you some soup.

Oh thank you, sweetheart.

That was very thoughtful.

Mom, are you sure I should be taking the kids?

You know how bad my luck is around this time of year.

Are you still convinced you've got that Christmas jinx?

Why do you think I've gone out of town the last four years?

Well, you're stuck in town now.

Maybe you'll finally get over it.

Kids!

Your Uncle Eric is here.

Come on!

Okay, bye!

Be good you two!

Bye Grandma!

We will!

Who's ready to have some fun with their Uncle Eric?

We're not going to fit in there.

Let's not jump to conclusions.

I'm not sitting on anyone's lap.

I wasn't thinking that.

We'll figure it out...

Mom's car is just in the garage, and it can fit all of us.

Nice driving Uncle Eric.

What, I'm not used to driving this boat.

Here let me take that for you.

You're my new favourite.

Dibs on the master.

You're sleeping in the basement.

Whoa

Here we are.

Just get comfortable.

Mi Casa ... Casa.

You've got no Christmas decorations.

Not that comfortable.

How come you don't have a Christmas tree?

That's a long story.

Don't you like Christmas?

Not particularly, no.

How come?

I'll tell you when you're older.

Gimme that.

But Uncle Eric, if we don't have a Christmas tree how will Santa find us?

Well maybe he's got GPS or something.

And if we don't have a tree, where will we put all the presents?

What presents?

And we always decorate the tree, and string popcorn.

And we have to make Christmas cookies to leave for Santa.

And we always hang our stockings, and build a snowman...

Aw, come on Chels.

We're gonna have a great time, I promise.

How?

I don't know.

Let me think about it for a minute.

You got any ideas?

Make Christmas for us.

Right...

Uh, Eric, are you okay?

Yep, yep.

I'm up.

Uh, how are the kids?

Um probably still sleeping.

Look, I really can't thank you enough.

Well, I don't think your kids are gonna feel the same way.

Uh ...y's that?

You know I don't do Christmas.

I know it's asking a lot, but could you maybe just get them a Christmas tree?

That is a big ask.

Okay Romeo.

Listen, they're the only niece and nephew you've got.

How about this one?

No.

This one's nice, right?

It's not too small.

It is too small.

Okay, what'd you have in mind?

Something a lot bigger.

Are you kidding me?

This thing looks like it belongs in Rockefeller Center.

It's just like the ones Mom and Dad always get.

Are you sure?

I don't recall them being this big.

Fine.

Excuse me.

We'll take this one.

Okay, wait.

I will get all of the ingredients for the Christmas cookies.

Okay, good.

Oh, can you play at the restaurant on Wednesday night?

Can't.

I am playing at an anniversary party.

Oh, that's too bad.

Why?

What are you up to?

Steve maybe got the ER doctor to come back on Wednesday night.

He was gonna make a special menu and everything.

Maybe we could do it Thursday night instead?

That might work.

I'm playing at a corporate Christmas party that afternoon, but I could probably get there by seven.

Oh, have you given any more thought to the audition?

Opportunities do not come around like this every day.

I know, and I am thinking about it.

Okay good.

I love you.

Brat!

Yeah whatever.

Alright, I got this.

Be careful.

That wasn't good.

That's quite a tree you have there.

Tell me about it.

We picked it out ourselves.

I like your decorations.

Aw.

Thank you.

Your kids?

No!

No.

I don't have kids.

This is my niece and nephew...

Chelsea and Liam.

Hello.

Hey Chelsea.

Hey Liam.

Sorry, I don't know your name.

April.

And you're Uncle...

Eric.

Eric Redford.

Nice to meet you.

Uh ...n I help you carry this?

That'd be great, thanks.

Do you think Conrad will notice?

Ugh ... notices everything.

I got the door.

At least you're better at this than your driving.

It's going to take a lot of ornaments to fill up this tree.

We forgot to buy ornaments.

Can't you just pretend it has ornaments?

I mean you're kids, use your imagination.

I don't think I can pretend that good.

Oh, come on Chels... the smell alone is plenty Christmasy, right?

Am I right?

No!

Look, I have a lot of extra ornaments at my house that you can use.

Of course you do.

I bet the inside of your house looks like Santa's workshop.

Close to it.

Wow, can we go over there and see it?

Maybe another time, Chelsea, I've got a lot of work to do.

Well, that's okay, I can take them.

I'm sure they'll really love it.

That's what I'm afraid of.

Please?

Go ahead.

I'll be here with the tree.

Bye Uncle Eric!

Try not to break anything!

I'll just be here setting up the Christmas tree.

Fun, fun, fun.

All by myself.

Whoa.

That's a lot of Christmas decorations.

Did somebody ask for Christmas in a box?

I love the reindeer!

Here we can put that on your hat.

You guys are doing such a job with decorating.

We definitely need more ornaments you guys.

Would you mind turning that down?

What's your favourite ornament guys?

Whoah, whoah!

Hey!

That's exactly how I broke my leg six years ago.

Is that why you don't like Christmas?

One of the reasons.

Well what do you think?

Is it possible it's getting bigger?

We haven't even turned on the lights yet.

Well who wants to do the honors?

Maybe Uncle Eric?

How about Chelsea?

Wow...

Wow is right.

That's the most beautiful Christmas tree i've ever seen!

Yeah ..., uh, looks, uh...pretty good.

Well, I should probably get going.

Thank you guys for letting me help you decorate the tree.

I'll walk you out.

I feel like it needs more sparkly things.

Hey, uh...

Thanks for doing all that for my niece and nephew.

Well, I guess it's no secret that I love Christmas, and the way I look at it I just got the chance to decorate a second Christmas tree.

You remind me of someone I used to know.

She was crazy about Christmas, too.

Well I hope I didn't bring back any bad memories.

Well, that's a whole other reason why I don't like Christmas.

But you made the kids very happy.

I just hope it lasts until my sister and her husband get back so I can finish my book.

Well, it was my pleasure.

Good luck with that book.

Thanks.


What's going on?

Maybe you could tell me?

I found this thing in my front lawn.

Do you happen to know how he got here?

No.

I've never seen him before.

What are you going to do with him?

Curb him.

And, hopefully whoever put him here will take him back.

I can see you!

Would it really be so hard for you to get into the Christmas spirit?

I mean just like a little bit?

What do you call that Christmas tree that's taking up half my living room?

'Cause I call that Christmas spirit... and then some.

Maybe there's hope for you yet.

Hope for me?

Come in.

Hey.

Hey.

Oh, did I tell you I talked to Mom last night?

She's coming on Christmas day!

I know, I am so excited to see her!

She's gonna be so happy.

She misses the snow so much now that she's in Florida.

I know.

Thank you so much for letting me keep Steve's presents here.

Oh yeah!

No problem.

Oh!

I noticed your cute neighbor has a Santa Claus on his lawn.

Did he come around?

No, not really, but he did put up a Christmas tree for his niece and nephew while they're staying with him.

So cute.

How do you know that?

Oh, I met him when he knocked over Conrad's reindeer with his tree.

Come again?

It was this thing.

But you know what?

It turns out he's not really that bad of a guy.

You found out all of this from a short conversation on his front lawn?

Easy.

I helped him carry in the Christmas tree...

Then I helped him decorated ...'s no big deal.

Stop.

So...who is he?

Well ...s name is Eric Redford.

He's a writer.

Wait!

Eric Redford?

Are you serious?

What?

Have you heard of him?

Only because of Steve.

Steve owns like all of his books.

And his books are part of the reason why Steve still has not proposed.

What kind of books does he write?

Only the kind that give men great reasons to stay single.

Uh-huh, yeah.

That makes sense.

So how's it going over there?

So far so good.

See, I told you there was no such thing as a Christmas jinx.

How's the book coming?

Slowly.

How are you feeling?

You ready to take the kids back soon?

I wish I could honey, but this flu has really knocked me out.

I better go.

I'll see you soon.

Talk to you soon.

Okay...

I'm working.

We're bored.

Hot on your tail.

Nitrous!

Here I come!

Yeah!

Oh making the pass!

Look, there's the finish line!

Yes!

Did you give me the bum controller?

No, you're just not good.

My controller's not working.

Come on! Come on! Come on!

Is that helping?

Who's gonna win?

Yes!

I win!

Way to go buddy.

You did pretty good.

Hey don't touch the hair.

Can I play?

Uh no, it's almost time for bed.

And, I have some writing to do tonight.

Come on.

Uncle Eric, when are you going to buy your Christmas presents?

The last minute.

Why?

Don't worry, you're on my list.

It's not that...

Well then what's the problem?

We have to buy our Christmas presents for mom and dad.

Yeah.

Could you take us shopping?

Sure I can do that.

Come with me.

This is how I shop for Christmas every year.

Gift cards.

Makes life so much easier.

That's not how we shop.

We need art supplies... glue, paper, and glitter...

You make your presents?

Yeah, some of them.

And besides, don't you need gifts for like mom, dad and Grandma?

And your friends?

And us?

Can't I just get you guys gift cards too?

No!

It's eight days till Christmas, the stores are gonna be packed.

But we have to see Santa Claus, and that's where he is.

Santa Claus?

You know like jolly, hohoho...?

Yeah, no.

I get it, Liam.

Please Uncle Eric?

Please?

Alright.

Go get ready for bed.

Hey, Bridget...

Good morning.

You're not calling to cancel lunch are you?

How about we go Christmas shopping instead?

I would love that.

Great.

Oh and by the way I have my niece and nephew so they'll be coming too.

Oh...

Is that okay?

Oh yeah, sure.

I love kids.

I'll pick you up at noon.

Christmas shopping?

Isn't that a little traditional for you?

I suppose I deserve that.

Liam and Chelsea guilted me into taking them.

Oh, are they here?

Yeah, they're waiting in line to visit Santa.

My uh, friend, Bridget's over there with them.

I thought I'd use the time to buy my mom a gift.

But I don't even know where to begin.

Would you have any suggestions?

They have some really cute stuff over here.

I found these adorable Christmas socks...

Okay, you're up next.

Ho-ho-ho, now what's your name?

Are you Uncle Eric's girlfriend?

I think so.

How much longer is this gonna take?

I don't know, but when it's my turn to talk to Santa I have a big list.

Oh, boy.

He waved at me!

Uh...well what did you get her last year?

A gift card.

Okay ...d the year before that?

A...gift card.

And let me guess.

You got her a gift card the yard before that?

Good guess.

Have you ever done any real Christmas shopping?

The last year I did someone stole my car.

And it wasn't just any car.

It was a 1965 Corvette Sting Ray.

I bought it after I sold my first book.

They stole it right out of the mall parking lot just before Christmas.

That was six years ago.

And is that the reason you don't celebrate Christmas?

Just another one of the many.

There are more?!

Oh my gosh.

What about Jewelry?

This guy has some amazing one-of-a-kind stuff.

Now that's something she would like.

What about that necklace?

That is pretty.

Excuse me.

Would you mind if we took a look at this?

Sure thing.

That's beautiful.

Would you try it on?

Uh ...re.

It's beautiful.

It really looks nice on you.

Thanks.

You should get it.

Oh no.

I am not doing any Christmas shopping for myself this year.

You don't have anyone you could drop a hint to this Christmas?

No.

Really?

No.

I didn't mean anything by that.

I just meant...that's hard to believe.

I guess Bridget could use some saving.

I should probably go.

Yeah.

Thanks for your help...again.

So we good now?

You've got your tree, your presents, and you visited Santa today.

So we're done, right?

Yeah ...guess so.

So why don't you go upstairs and get ready for bed?

I'm not tired.

Really?

I'm not tired either.

Okay, so what do you want to do?

Can we watch a movie?

Please Uncle Eric?

All right.

You go pick one out.

I'll go make the popcorn.

Well, we've got an interesting week of weather coming up...

Hello?...

Sounds like I woke you.

No ...am and Chelsea are asleep on the couch.

We were watching a movie and they passed out on me.

Aww that's adorable.

So how are you feeling?

Well, a little better.

My throat is still scratchy.

How are you making out over there?

I took the kids Christmas shopping today.

Next thing you know you'll be telling me you bought a Christmas tree.

Oh, we got a Christmas tree.

That was Dana's idea.

But Liam and Chelsea have talked me into everything else.

Everything else?

You know, everything they normally do during Christmas time.

I don't know how Dana and Bruce do it every year.

Well, you stay strong, sweetheart.

And remember, you're the boss.

Give them my love.

I will.

Okay, now you have everything you need to make your Christmas cards, right?

Uh-huh.

Because I need to work undisturbed for the next few hours, so unless it's really, really important you're on your own.

We good?

Yep!

We're gonna be busy for a long time.

Great.

Hopefully I will be, too.

Where do we start?

♪ The stars hung on the tree ♪

♪ But it's just not the same 'cause you're not here with me ♪

♪ Santa if you hear me I hope you got my list ♪

♪ 'Cause all I want for Christmas ♪

♪ is the perfect Christmas kiss from my baby ♪ I'm gonna spill this all over the kitchen.

A tablespoon of this, right?

Yep.

No!

What's up?

We ran out of glue.

I was wondering if we could go over to April's and see if she has any?

Yeah, sure.

I'm gonna use gold.

It is awfully quiet out there.

Hey, guys...

Kids, where are you?

Liam...

Chelsea...

Liam?!

Chelsea?!

Hey.

Are Chelsea and Liam here?

Yeah.

Sorry.

That's okay.

You want to come in?

Sure.

Nice place.

Pink one...

So focused on my writing and I didn't even know they left.

Hey guys.

This is my sister, Elaine.

Hi, you must be Eric.

Sorry.

Cookies...

Yes, I am Eric.

Nice to meet you, Elaine.

Looks like you two have been busy.

We're making Christmas cookies.

I can see that.

Yeah, these are for the neighborhood Christmas caroling.

It's on December twenty-second if you wanna join us.

I'm not much of a singer.

Can we stay a little longer?

Yeah, there's a whole other batch of cookies we can decorate.

Well that's not up to me.

I don't mind if you don't mind.

I don't mind.

Alright.

I'll take that.

Alright, well you two be good.

Okay?

We will.

Alright, have fun.

Bye.

You collect vinyl?

Yeah.

You mind if I take a look?

No.

Go ahead.

Nice collection.

I'm a jazz man myself.

Oh, I've heard.

A little too loud?

Well...

Sorry about that.

That's okay.

At least you've got good taste.

Thank you.

Wow.

Yeah.

A lot of those belonged to my dad, and when he passed away he left them to me.

I've just been adding to them ever since.

He was a jazz pianist, actually.

He taught me everything I know.

And now the student has become the teacher.

You got to stick to what you do best.

I get that.

It's basically what I've been doing the past few years with my writing.

Except lately it's been a bit of a struggle.

Not that I don't love writing.

I do.

It's just...

And apparently you love what you write about.

The whole bachelor lifestyle and all.

Yeah, well believe it or not, there's more to me than just being a bachelor.

Oh.

So the Corvette, late nights, and poker games, are not really you?

Maybe not so much anymore.

I mean after all, I am driving a minivan these days and I kind of like it.

How did he get back on my lawn?

I have no idea.

Well, he's not staying there.

I'll bring the kids back in about an hour.

Thanks.

Here's Mr. Moose, Chelsea.

We got a fresh bucket of popcorn.

So, my buddies are gonna be here any second.

What do you wanna to do?

Wanna play a game, watch TV, read?

Could we read one of your books?

Mom and Dad talk about them all the time.

Oh yeah?

What do they say?

Mom says they're juvenile.

That means they're for kids, right?

Not intentionally, no.

Look, why don't you just watch T.V., okay?

I'll be up later to check on you.

Okay.

You okay, Chels?

Yep.

Do you like this show?

Yeah.

How's that?

Awesome.

Does Mr. Moose like that show?

Mr. Moose do you like that show?

Yes I do.

Yes he does.

Is that glitter on the table?

Yeah, I thought I cleaned all that up.

Chelsea and Liam were making their Christmas cards.

Aww!

Hey, anyone find that Furry Murray toy yet?

I did.

I saw it at the Christmas market.

What?

It was on Chelsea's Christmas list.

Well, I don't know what's happening anymore.

I'm out.

Me too.

Come to papa.

Hey, I'm getting up, you guys want anything?

Some pretzels.

All right.

Could you not leave your empty beer cans lying around.

There's kids in the house, you know.

Who are you right now?

Yeah, and what have you done with Eric?

Very funny.

Seriously, all of a sudden it's like playing poker with Mr. Mom.

So you're basically telling me the reason we always play poker here is because I don't have a wife and kids?

Well, yeah.

There's no way my wife would let me have three rowdy guys playing cards till two in the morning.

Or have a bunch of guys over to watch a game every week.

Face it, you're the last man Standing, bro.

It's not that we don't love our families, it's just...

It's just here you can put your glasses down on the counter without a coaster, you can eat all the junk food you want, and we can be loud and rowdy without waking the kids.

Amen.

What do you think I've been writing about for the last seven years?

I have no idea.

I've never read any of your books.

Why do I invite this guy?

I don't know.

I didn't know you did.

It's your deal.

Okay.

Bonjour Mademoiselle.

How was the performance?

It was good.

I'm starving.

Tonight our special is Omble Chevalier with a saffron semolina.

It's my Grandmother's recipe, and it's to die for.

That sounds very cute.

How's April doing with the doctor?

Oh, it's really going well, I think.

He's on the move.

Now's your time.

For what?

You know, to ask her.

Ugh!

Fine.

Go!

Hey!

I wanted to bug you about your audition.

I have been practicing, if that's what you want to know.

I talked with the conductor about you tonight.

He's really excited to hear you play.

Okay.

How are things going with the doctor?

He seems nice.

Aw, I'm so happy for you.

I said he seems nice.

Okay, whatever.

So, Steve has a favor to ask, but he is too embarrassed to do it himself, so he has recruited me.

What is it?

He would like to know if you would ask your neighbor to sign a few of his books?

I know... it's really embarrassing coming from me, given what I think about them but...

Yeah.

Oh these are too amazing.

I mean, of course, yes I will ask him!

The things we do for love.

Help me.

Do you smell that?

I don't know but I wanna thank you for a wonderful evening because that was awesome.

Can't believe Ryan won it all, right?

There's a first time for everything.

You hit a set of five on a river.

It was like the luckiest hand ever.

No, no, no.

You gotta to know when to fold'em.

Okay.

I'll win again next week.

You keep thinking that.

Hey man, next week?

Yeah, next week.

Later guys.

See ya!

You gotta be kidding me!

Come on man, give it up!

I don't want your little Santa, or your snowman!

I haven't a clue what you're rambling about.

I'm talking about these decorations you keep leaving on my lawn.

Not the guilty party.

Well then, who is?

Well maybe, you've been visited by some Christmas elves.


Hey.

Come on in.

Thanks.

Brr...

You bought my books?

Oh, no not me.

These are my sister's boyfriend's books.

He's a huge fan and he asked me if you would sign them.

I-I hope you don't mind.

No, it's fine.

Oh my god!

That is so sweet.

I was wondering where all my socks have been disappearing to.

Here.

Oh, thanks.

Yeah.

So I uhh, noticed you had a late night last night.

I noticed that you had a late night, too.

New boyfriend?

No, just a blind date.

How'd it go?

Pretty good.

I think that uhh, we will be going out again, so...

Hmm.

So who should I sign these to?

Steve.

To little Steve.

I don't know what that means.

To Steve.

Go get em', Tiger.

To my good buddy, Steve.

Never give up.

Eric.

Another satisfied customer.

Thank you very much!

He will be very happy.

Anyways, I should go practice.

You sound amazing.

I heard you when I was outside earlier.

Oh, well...

I hope I wasn't too loud?

Not at all.

Wasn't that Debussy you were playing?

Yeah.

The girl with The Flaxen Hair.

I've never heard that as a violin solo.

You're really talented.

Thank you.

I just wish that talent was enough.

What do you mean?

Uhh, I have this audition with the Philharmonic and I have this history of botching my auditions.

How?

Hiccups.

What!?

Don't laugh, it's serious.

I get the worst hiccups when I'm nervous.

Okay, well then we need to find a way for you to not be nervous.

Here.

How does someone get over stage fright?

Technology, it's the best.

Okay, I found this on the web for "how do you get over stage fright."

Okay we got something.

Method one... try chewing gum to relax your body.

No, definitely do not wanna do that while playing the violin.

No, that sounds very stupid.

Alright.

Method two... meditate for 15-20 minutes before going on stage.

That could be good.

No, I've tried that.

Sounds good.

It didn't work for me.

Okay, moving on.

Method three... laugh as much as you can.

It does not say that!

What?

You think I'm making this stuff it up.

Look.

Umm, yeah no, it does say that!

Yeah, it does.

It definitely says that.

I don't think that'll work though.

Okay, well, method four seems a little bit more reasonable...

Imagine that every seat in the audience is filled with a clone of your favorite person, preferably someone who encourages you.

Well, that does seem very reasonable.

And I'm sure you have plenty of people who would fit the bill.

I have one or two.

Great, then you're covered.

Thanks.

And thank you for these.

Anytime.

See ya.

Bye.

Hi, Bridget.

Uh, hi.

I didn't realize they were coming to the party with us.

I couldn't leave them with a stranger.

What about that music teacher neighbor of yours?

April?

I barely know her and besides, Nick set up a screening room in one of the offices, they've got a ton of kids movies.

Uncle Eric told us to be on our best behavior tonight.

And be extra nice to you.

Okay...

All the kids are having a great time in there.

♪Yeah, that was a great idea.

Thanks, Nick.

Your date doesn't look too happy.

She didn't expect me to bring Liam and Chelsea out with us.

I guess you'll have to make that up to her, huh?

Yeah.

Thanks.

I hate to bug you, but umm, how's the book coming?

Not much better than the last time you asked.

Have you tried writing in a different environment?

That might help.

I've tried every coffee house and park bench in town.

Mhm, are you gonna be able to make your deadline?

I hate to say it, but if you don't, you could be in breach of contract.

But no pressure.

Mmmm.

Thanks for that, Nick.

I-I guess I'm gonna go mingle.

You do that.

Hey, neighbor!

Hey.

Nice candy-canes!

Thanks, want me to put some in your yard?

No, I'm good.

Hey umm, do you like ice skating cause Elaine and I are gonna go tonight.

I thought maybe you and the kids could tag along?

That sounds fun, but uhh, I can't, I have a prior thing.

But thanks, the kids would've loved that...

Well, they're welcome to come with us, if you don't mind.

No, you've done enough...

I wouldn't want to impose.

Not at all, it'd be fun.

Really?

Yeah.

Okay, I'll let em' know.

Okay, cool.

Thanks.

Alright, see ya later.

See ya.

Sure you don't want some candy canes?

I'm good.

This is absolutely delicious.

Where did you learn to cook like this?

Well, I started when I was writing my bachelor's cookbook.

You know, at first it was research... turns out I was pretty good at it.

Well, thank you for making this a special evening.

I know I've been a little distracted lately, but things will get better once I finish my book.

Once your sister gets back and picks up the kids.

Yeah, well that too.

You should have heard Chelsea and Liam on the phone with Dana.

You know, they were just going on about how much fun they're having with me.

I'd say you're having as much fun as they are.

Why shouldn't I?

They are my niece and nephew.

Because one of the things that first attracted me to you is the fact you don't have kids.

Lately you've been acting more like a doting father than someone who writes about being a single guy.

Well, what's wrong with that?

The truth is, Eric, you're nothing like your books at all.

So, where's the handsome uncle tonight?

He had plans.

Well, you're a very good neighbor.

Is there something going on between you two?

You are incorrigible.

What?

It's my job to be a pest!

If I don't find you a handsome husband, who's going to?

I will!

I will find myself a handsome husband.

I like the kids, they like me and we are having fun.

Right and there's nothing romantic between you two.

No.

Then uhh, I guess we're all good here.

Hey, you're here early.

Yeah my uhh, prior engagement didn't go so well.

The woman from the restaurant.

Yeah.

Uncle Eric, look at me!

Wow, Chelsea.

You're an amazing skater.

I know.

And humble.

Hey guys, do you wanna go get some hot chocolate.

Yes!

Of course!

It's not even a question, everybody loves hot chocolate.

I know.

Come join us!

Nah, I'm good here.

I'm not gonna take no for an answer.

I don't have any skates.

They rent them here.

Come on!

I'll be right back.

I'll show you my moves!

My super- Oh, did you see that?

I just turned.

Thanks again for looking after the kids tonight, they really love spending time with you.

Well, they're great.

I'm sorry that your previous engagement didn't turn out well.

Well apparently, Bridget prefers me as an unencumbered single guy without any kids around.

So she would prefer to be with the kind of guy that you write about in your books?

Wait, you--

I-I read your books.

The ones that you signed for Steve.

You hated them, didn't you?

Actually no, I didn't.

I thought that there was an honesty to what you were saying.

I think you're a really good writer, it's--

Go on, I can take it.

Look, I only read two of your books.

It kind of feels like you're saying the same thing just in different ways.

I know, I know.

I've been saying it since my twenties.

You know that quote, 'it takes courage to grow up and be who you really are'?

No, I don't think that's a real quote but I like how it sounds.

Okay, well, maybe it's time for me to admit that I'm growing up.

Maybe you should write about that in your books.

I'm still putting the pieces together, but you know what?

I think they're falling into place.

Yeah?

Yeah.

♪It was lots of fun.

I'm glad you taught me all those cool moves.

You're welcome.

I love spinning on skates.

Hey, go get ready for bed.

I'll be up there in a minute.

Come on, Chelsea.

Goodnight, you guys.

Goodnight, April.

Bye.

Let me walk you home.

It's a rough neighborhood out there.

Okay.

Gosh, how can you deny that Christmas is just the best time of year?

The air so cool and crisp, you can smell the fireplaces, the stars are twinkling in the sky, and all of these lights, it's just so magical.

I can't deny that it's pretty, and charming, and all that other stuff, but it reminds me of something I'd rather not remember.

That person that I remind you of?

Well, only in the sense that she was all about Christmas too.

So, one year I decided to give her the ultimate Christmas present, I proposed on Christmas Eve, ring and all.

What I didn't know was that she had fallen in love with someone else.

I can see why you'd want to forget that.

Now you know the real reason I don't do Christmas.

Or have much fondness for women who do.

That's not exactly true... anymore.

Well, I'm glad to hear that.

And a lot of that's your fault.

Well, I take full responsibility.

Uncle Eric.

I should--

You should--

Probably get those kids to bed.

Yeah, uh-huh.

Well, goodnight.

Night.

Hey, umm--

I'm really glad that you came ice skating with us tonight.

It was a lot of fun.

Yes, it was.

Flick him again!

Are you awake, Uncle Eric?

I am now.

Okay, come on!

Get up!

Come on!

We got something to show you.

What?

Hurry up!

Come on!

Just come!

Okay, come on, come on!

Come on!

Ready?

You're gonna love it.

Unbelievable!

You two get ready for breakfast.

I'll be right in.

What's the use?


Hi, this is April Stuart and I am calling to confirm my four o' clock audition for today.

Yeah, thank you.

Nick, I had an amazing break through yesterday and I worked all night.

But I gotta warn you, I kind of went off in a different direction.

How different?

Look, just read it.

Okay, I'm gonna send you the pages in a few minutes and we'll talk later.

Hey guys, breakfast is ready.

Adding some new decorations?

No, I'm just moving things around.

My audition is this afternoon, so I'm just trying to keep myself distracted.

Well, I have no doubt that you will crush it.

What piece are you gonna play?

I haven't decided yet.

Well, if I were you I'd play that Christmas one you've been practicing.

I mean, look around.

It's you.

True.

But I just don't think it's the best piece for an audition.

But it's a great piece, and it shows who you are.

And isn't that what you want the orchestra to see?

Oh, uhh, I almost forgot...

I wanted to return your plate.

Oh, thank you.

And let you know that I stayed up all night writing.

After we spoke, it dawned on me, if I don't believe what I'm writing, my readers won't either.

And, having Chelsea and Liam around, it kinda put things in perspective.

And then the words just started pouring out of me.

Wow.

Well, I mean, maybe it was the cookies?

They definitely didn't hurt.

But seriously, you were the inspiration.

Wow.

Well, hopefully I've inspired my students too.

Tonight's the big test.

Tonight?

It's the neighborhood Christmas caroling.

Ahh.

Maybe you'll join us?

Ooh, no.

Come on!

No.

It'll be fun.

You don't want me to join you.


Okay.

Hey guys, we gotta go and see my agent.

Thanks for coming in.

I felt we needed to talk this out in person.

That doesn't sound good.

No, no.

Not at all.

C'mon Nick, we've known each other for too long.

You hated the pages, didn't you?

I don't hate them, but this isn't what the publisher bought, that worries me.

Look, I know it's different.

This is not just different.

This is a whole new genre for you.

Can't that be a good thing?

It can also be a dangerous thing.

We're gambling with your career here if we turn these in.

Well, that's a gamble I'm willing to take.

Merry Christmas, Nick.

What no gift card?

Hey.

Your house is beginning to look a lot like Christmas.

I like it.

Well, I figured if you can't beat 'em, you might as well join 'em.

Well, welcome.

Thanks.

Hey guys.

You're joining us?

Any objections?

I'm just surprised, that's all.

Listen, Conrad...

I think I owe you an apology for being such a Scrooge.

If you don't mind, I'd like to offer a little advice on your Christmas décor...

Let's not push it.

Yeah, yeah.

Welcome, everybody.

It is so exciting to have you here once again.

And if everyone's ready, let's go out and spread some Christmas cheer.

Woo!

♪ Joy to the world The Lord has come ♪

♪ Let earth receive her King ♪

♪ Let every heart prepare Him room. ♪

♪ Don we now our gay apparel, ♪

♪ Fa la la, la la la, la la la ♪

♪ Troll the ancient yule tide carol ♪

♪ Fa la la la la, la la la la ♪

Be careful with that, it's hot.

Thank you.

This is really good.

Yeah, aren't they?

Great job, you guys!

Hey.

So, I know it's not exactly a jazz concert, but uhh, you seemed to be enjoying yourself out there.

I did.

Mhm.

The neighborhood does this every year?

Mhm.

Every December 22nd.

For the past 27 years.

But the live accompaniment just started a few years ago when I moved here.

Wow, we are lucky to have you.

And so would any orchestra.

How'd the audition go?

Pretty good, yeah.

I used method number four and uhh, no hiccups.

Nice.

They said we'll hear by the end of the month.

So, I'm just trying to keep my mind off of it.

I promised the kids we'd watch a movie tonight.

Why don't you join us?

Maybe that would help you keep your mind off of it.

You're not writing tonight?

I am also trying to stay preoccupied.

I turned in my new pages, I'm waiting to hear back from my new publisher.

Maybe we can uhh, stay distracted together?

I'll bring the popcorn?

One thing you should know about me, I am a master popcorn popper.

Oh, and I thought I knew everything about you from your books.

Well, don't you know you shouldn't judge a book by it's cover?

Or the author.

We'll see.

You like that falsetto?

I did!

That wasn't intentional.

I definitely think you have a career in singing.

You were impressed.

I was, I was very impressed.

I'll keep surprising you.

I definitely was.

Umm, we should probably do a rain check on that movie.

Yeah.

I'll see you later.

I wasn't expecting you.

Yeah, I know, I was umm, just about to leave you a note.

I'm sorry about the other night.

Don't be.

You were being honest.

Blunt would be more accurate.

And I realized we left things unresolved, so I just wanted to clear the air and say I don't think we should keep dating.

I think you're right.

Then there's no hard feelings.

Merry Christmas, Bridget.

Merry Christmas, Eric.

Thank you so much April, I know I keep asking you to watch the kids, but when my agent calls and says it's important I kind of gotta go and besides, if I bring the kids one more time, Nick's liable to sign them as clients.

I'm happy to help.

Besides, the best part about Christmas is wrapping presents, right guys?

I like getting them better.

Listen to this guy.

Get in the house.

Hey uhh, sorry about the interruption last night.

If you're available, would you be up for giving it another try tonight?

I mean that is, if you're free of course.

I'm sorry, I'm working tonight.

Oh.

Okay.

Good luck.

Thanks, I think I just might need it.

I'm glad you're sitting down, because the publishers--

Loved your pages!

In fact, they wanna sign you to two sequels.

What?

A-are you serious?

Boom-shacka-lacka!

I don't even know what to say.

How about you were right and I was wrong?

Well, I'm not one to throw things back in someone's face.

No, no, I deserve it.

Especially this time.

You were right on with the new direction.

They think this is gonna be huge.

We can't use the old title, so they want to know what you gon' call it.

How Christmas heals the heart.

Sounds like a winner.

Right?

I need a copy, baby.

Wow!

You just pull it and then you get the big release.

That's so cool.

Umm, I don't think this one is ours.

It's probably for your Grandma.

No, Uncle Eric bought Grandma a watch.

We wrapped it yesterday.

Then who's this for?

It's probably for Bridget.

We'll let Uncle Eric wrap that one himself.

Hey mom, how's my favorite lady feeling today?

Better, but I'm still a little weak.

Doctor wants me to stay in one more day.

That's terrific!

You sound awfully happy.

I got some great news from my publisher today.

They loved my book.

Oh honey, I'm so proud of you!

And if this doesn't prove you don't have a Christmas jinx, I don't know what will.

Oh.

Eric, I-I have to go lie down.

I'm feeling a little tired just now.

Bye.

I'll be back in a minute.

I'll see you at the house.

That's really great news, Eric.

Congratulations!

Hey, how about I open a bottle of champagne and we celebrate tonight when you get back from work?

I usually get off pretty late and I'm tired so...

Okay, well, how about a rain check?

I don't think so.

Is something wrong?

I just, I don't think it's a good idea.

Look, I have a student coming in a few minutes and I--

Congratulations again.

Wake up, sleepy heads.

Up, up, up!

Come on.

Five more minutes.

Is it Christmas already?

Not until tomorrow but I have a surprise for you.

Come on, getup!

Gotta get dressed.

Let's go!

I know you guys are disappointed your Mom and Dad aren't back yet, so I thought maybe we could start a tradition of our own.

Just the three of us.

Go on, go get your skates.

I'll meet you over there.

Hey, man.

Glad you made it.

Thanks, where are your kids?

They're already on the ice.

So uhh, how is Santa and his reindeer doing?

What are you talking about?

Your front lawn.

That was you!

Wait, you didn't figure it out?

Obviously not.

It's a good thing you're not a mystery writer.

We should put that one on the tree.

Yeah.

Looks pretty good, doesn't it?

That's a lot of turkey for just us.

Left overs are the best part.

I don't care if it's just the three of us.

We are gonna have a Christmas Eve to remember.

Can we invite April?

I thought about that, but I know she's working tonight.

And besides, I think she might be mad at me.

What for?

I wish I knew.

Do you think it's about that necklace?

What necklace?

The one you bought for Bridget.

I didn't buy Bridget a necklace.

Well, April said you did.

It was in the bag of presents we were wrapping.

She said you should wrap it yourself.

Now it makes sense.

It does?

Yeah, I'll explain it to you in a few years.

Sorry April, we need to talk.

Hey, how was last night?

How did it go?

It didn't.

What do you mean?

His girlfriend was there waiting for him when we got home.

I'm so sorry, April.

It'll be okay.


Uncle Eric, this is uhh, kinda lumpy.

Who could that be?

Maybe it's Santa.

It's way too early, Uncle Eric.

You're too smart for your own good.

Surprise!

You're back!

We made it!

Hey!

Hey you!

Smells like turkey in here.

Yeah!

So nice to see you!

We decorated it ourselves!

Wow!

Did you really?

How long did that take you?

A long time.

Mom, should you be out in your condition?

Oh, about that...

I missed you so much!

Let me see you, let me see you.

I was never actually sick, I kind of lied about having the flu.

Well, if you wanted to get rid of the kids that badly, you could have just been honest with me.

Actually, you were the kid I wanted to get rid of.

I just thought that if you were forced to take on some responsibility you'd grow and you know, let go of the past.

And you know what sweetheart, from what I've seen this week, I think it worked.

Now, I hope you're too mad at me, huh?

Huh?

I started to feel guilty around day three.

I'm not mad.

I get why you did it... but maybe you should be the writer in the family...

Definitely fiction.

Oh wow, look at that tree!

Yeah!

You know, that is the largest tree I've ever seen in anyone's house.

I thought it was like the ones you get every year.

What?

No.

Honey, this turkey is absolutely delicious.

I basted the turkey for an hour.

Where did you learn how to cook like this?

I wrote a book, which you obviously didn't read.

Has anyone read my book!?

Has anyone read my recipe book, I really wanna know!

Honey, honey tell us about your trip.

We spent the last 24 hours flying home by way of Moscow, Brussels, and London.

But hey, at least we made it back for Christmas, right?

And you two really came through for us, thank you.

We were happy to help, weren't we mom?

Looks like Uncle Eric kept you two busy.

It was more like they kept me busy.

Yeah, and we haven't even tell you about the ice skating and the Christmas caroling with April.

Yeah, that was so much fun...

Okay so someone needs to fill us in and let us know who April is.

I thought the last girl you were dating was named Bridget.

Well, the word 'was' pretty much sums up that relationship.

Okay, I'm a little confused here, as to who April is.

She lives two doors down, she was great with Liam and Chelsea.

Wasn't she, guys?

So, why isn't she here tonight?

Because she doesn't seem to be talking to me right now.

Sounds like more than just a neighbor to me.

Yeah well, I was kinda hoping that would be the case, but I guess I blew it somehow.

Okay Romeo, so if she lives next door, why don't you just go over and tell her how you feel?

Cause she's not home.

But I know where she is.

What am I doing?

I'm sorry, guys.

I-I gotta go!

Thanks for the advice, sis.

What?

We need to talk.

I can't, I'm working.

I'm not going anywhere until you listen to me.

There's nothing to say.

You have a girlfriend, I misread the signals, no harm done.

You didn't misread any signals.

Bridget and I are not a couple.

She just came over last night to apologize, and we wished each other well.

And, about that necklace you saw...

I bought it for you, no one else.

I told you the first time I saw it, it was meant for you.

And maybe I am too...

maybe we're meant for each other.

And you don't even write romance novels.

I'd rather live one.

How's that for a happy ending?

Well, it's not over yet.

I heard from the orchestra, I'm in!

Yes!

By the way, what are you doing New Years Eve?

You mind if I steal April tonight?

You two get out of here!

Bye!

Merry Christmas!

♪ With the sleigh bells ringing ♪

♪ And the choir singing

♪ I watch how it all lights up your eyes ♪

♪ And when I wish upon the winter sky ♪

♪ It's for you this Christmas time ♪