Miss Christmas (2017) Script

♪ Oh, jingle bells ♪

♪ Jingle bells ♪

♪ Jingle all the way ♪

♪ Oh, what fun it is to ride in a one-horse open sleigh ♪

♪ Hey ♪

♪ Jingle bells jingle bells ♪

♪ Jingle all the way ♪

♪ Oh, what fun it is to ride in a one-horse open sleigh ♪

♪ A day or two ago ♪

♪ I thought I'd take a ride ♪

♪ And soon my favorite beau was sleighing by my side... ♪

[reporter]: It's officially Christmas time here at the Radcliffe Center, and all of Chicago is gathered to watch the lighting of the Radcliffe Christmas tree, and here with us, we have Chicago's very own "Miss Christmas."

You can call me Holly.

Oh, Holly, and you are the one to thank for that stunning tree.

We are only moments away now from the lighting, and Holly is the creative director for the Radcliffe Center, and each year, she finds, transports, and facilitates decorating Chicago's Christmas tree.

It's a dream job come true.

[crowd]: Nine, eight, seven, six, five...

Here we go!

[crowd]: Three, two, one!


[reporter]: Isn't that beautiful?

Chicago's symbol of Christmas.

[over TV recording]: I have no doubt that next year's tree will be bigger and better than ever.

No pressure.

I can't believe a year's gone by already.

For once in my life, I thought I made it to the office before you.

There's always tomorrow.

Thanks. You're a lifesaver.

Today is definitely a coffee kind of day.

I did not get any sleep last night, and I have a million things to do.

Is one of those things watching last year's tree ceremony for the hundredth time?

You know how happy it makes me, and right now, I need all the reassurance I can get.

Holly, relax.

I just spoke with transport, and all is good.

They've secured the trunk. They're about ready to cut.

The tree will be here by tonight.

Yeah, fingers crossed.

[phone rings]


Okay, yeah, yeah, I'll be right there.

I still think I should've gone out there.

I always go...

And run yourself ragged, and micro-manage everything, and end up exhausted and unable to enjoy the tree lighting ceremony.


That's my Christmas tradition.

Why don't we find a new tradition this year?

Like what?

Like getting out of our comfort zone, back on the market?

I got us two tickets to a speed dating event.


Do you have anything else to wear, though?

'Cause it looks like Mrs. Claus chose your outfit again.

I think you should be a little nicer to someone who brings you coffee every morning and who is your boss...

and I appreciate you thinking of me, but no.

Look, I have to be here for when the tree arrives, and I've so much to do.

All you do is work.

That's not true.

I do other things.


-Like what? -Like... like Christmas!

-Oh. -Okay?

And after the Radcliffe tree arrives, I'm going to go home and decorate my tree.

There's 24 more days until Christmas.

I know, and I'm running out of time.

Listen, Erin, I appreciate your ongoing meddling into my personal life, but I'm a little busy right now, orchestrating cutting down...

[both]: A 95-foot-tall spruce and getting it trucked across the state.

-Really? -I'm sorry.

I just...

I want to see you spend the holidays with someone.

And I want that too.

It's just...

I'm busy right now, and I'm trying to focus on my career.

Dating takes time, and it's really distracting.

I just want to get my career to where it needs to be, and then... you know... we'll see.

Wouldn't it be nice to bring a date to the tree lighting ceremony?

I just want there to be a tree lighting ceremony.

Everything is on schedule. What could possibly go wrong?

[woman]: Holly!


Did you see this?



[gasps] What happened?

It looks like the crane swiped it, breaking off the branches...

Rendering it unusable. It's ruined.

No, it's not ruined. It's...

Okay, it's ruined. Um... but it's going to be fine.

We can fix this.



I'm going to find another tree.

Find another...?

You just spent all year finding this tree.

How are you going to find another tree and get it here and get it decorated in time for the tree-lighting ceremony in 10 days?

Thank you, Andrea.

That's very helpful.

[whispering to self] Okay, focus, Holly.

You are Miss Christmas.

[normal voice] I am Miss Christmas.

This is what I do, and I am going to figure this out.

Apparently, yes. Yeah.

You know, maybe this is a good thing.

Yeah, that tree was beautiful, but it never felt right.

It never felt like "the" tree.

Maybe this happened for a reason.

Are you actually finding the silver lining?

My dad always said, "When things go wrong, don't go with them."

I know the perfect tree is out there, and I'm going to find it.

Clear my schedule.

But what about the speed dating?

Maybe you can find your perfect man.

The only thing that's harder than finding the perfect Christmas tree is finding the perfect man, but at least the perfect tree really does exist.

[Erin]: We have spent hours looking for a new tree!

[Holly]: How about these?

You've looked through those already.

What haven't I looked through?

You've looked through everything.

There has to be something.


What about the tree submissions we got in the mail?

They've been coming in all year.


Yeah. Guess I'm not going speed dating tonight.

No, no, no. You go. I got this.

Are you sure?

Yeah. Definitely, yes.

Definitely, yeah.

Well, it is the season of miracles.

Hey, come on!

Yay, we're home.

Oh, Rudy, I forgot to tell you.

So your daycare mommy told me not only were you the best-behaved dog today... you were also the best-looking dog... but we kind of already knew that, didn't we?

Told you that bow looks good on you.



[Rudy whimpers]

My sentiments exactly.

[phone rings with "Jingle Bells" ringtone]


[Erin]: Hey! I figured you'd be home by now.

Just wanted to check and see what you got so far.

Uh... apple trees, potted plants, cacti, and a Popsicle-stick tree.



You ready to give up?




Now I'm ready to give up.

[child]: "Dear Miss Christmas, I saw you on TV.

You're the lady who chooses the Christmas tree.

I'm writing to you to tell you that I've found your next tree.

Please come to Klaus, Wisconsin to pick it up.

Sincerely, Joey McNary, age 8."




[continued knocking]


[Holly]: I found it.

I found it!

It's "the" tree.

I have to go to Klaus.

To Santa Claus?

Okay, you are officially Christmas crazy.

No, no!

Klaus, Wisconsin.

You know, that town that does the big Christmas festival.


It's a big holiday destination spot.

They decorate the whole town.

They have Christmas events and caroling and... everything, okay?

My dad took me once as a kid, and now... the tree is there!


Yes, this really is perfect.

It is! It's "the" tree!

Oh, hey, can you take Rudy for me while I'm gone?

Sure... but Holly, there's no return address.

How are you going to find these people?

Erin, this is what I do, all right? I am Miss--

Okay, it's a little too early for that.

Fair enough.

Good job, though.


[phone rings with "Jingle Bells" ringtone]

[Erin]: Hey, how's life outside the city?

[Holly]: It's a winter wonderland.

You have to try it sometime.

How come these scouting trips never take us to Paris or London?

Maybe because trees tend to grow in forests.

Okay, I'm almost there!


Now all you have to do is find Joey.

Yeah, it's a small town.

How hard can it be?


♪ I like the sparkly Christmas things ♪

♪ I love to hear the children sing ♪

♪ I like to hear the sleigh bells ring ♪

♪ And all the joy that Christmas brings ♪

♪ Could be an angel in disguise ♪

♪ With all the people passing by ♪

♪ With all the glitter ♪

♪ What really matters ♪

♪ Is what the spirit of Christmas means ♪ Whoo.

♪ Try to give more than you receive ♪

[people bustling]


All right, wait, wait, wait.

Is that center?

A little to the left.

All right, let's try that.

Ah... How's that?


Thank you.

[people bustling]

[woman]: I have the lights.

[man]: Don't know where he's going to put it...

Some more candy canes over here...

[woman]: I'm wanted at the elf station...

-Oh, gosh, so sorry! -Sorry.

Sorry about that. Whoa... oh...

Ha, ha! Sorry.

I'm going to--

Okay, you go to your right.



You okay?

Yeah. Ah...




It's really beautiful.

Yeah, we're getting there.

Nothing like a small-town Christmas.


You're a little early.

The festival's not for four days.

We get a lot of you city folk.



Turn around.

You calling me a city girl?

Well, are you not?

Okay, I might live in a city right now, but I will have you know that I grew up on a Christmas tree farm.

A Christmas tree farm?


So you're one of those "holiday people?"

"Holiday people?"

Are you not one of those people?

No, no.

Okay, 'cause it looks to me like you're setting up for a Christmas festival.

Well, we take turns here in our little small town of Klaus, okay?

I just happens to be my year.


But if it were up to me, I'd skip December altogether.



You would skip December?

The most beautiful time of year?

Filled with hope and magic, twinkling Christmas trees...

It's just a fancy landing pad for presents.

Uh, you mean a symbol of seasonal rebirth.

Decked in mistletoe. Vile weed.


An emblem of romance!

[chuckles] Okay.

I guess I'm just immune to the holiday spirit.


Well, I guess I'd better be on my way.

You know, it's just like you big city folk... always rushing off somewhere.

I told you, I grew up on a Christmas tree... farm... but you're not listening.



♪ Deck the halls with boughs of holly ♪

♪ 'Tis the season to be jolly ♪ Hi.


Hi. I have a reservation.

Holly, right?


Happy to have you.

Thank you.

Do you need any information on Klaus?

Activities, restaurants?

Oh, our Christmas Festival opens in four days.

It is not to be missed.

I know.

I was actually here once as a child, but today, I'm here because I'm hoping you could help me look for somebody.


I'm the Creative Director at the Radcliffe Center, and it's my job to find the tree that goes in the plaza.

So cool!

We watch that on TV.

I am so looking forward to this year's tree.

Well, that's actually why I'm here.

We were looking for a new tree, and then I got this letter.

I know this is a long shot, but do you happen to know Joey McNary?

Not such a long shot.

I'm his aunt.

Come on!

I'm Aimee McNary.

Are you serious?


It's a small world.


I could introduce you to his dad, my brother Sam.


How about I take you to our family farm?


Oh, I love your farm!

It reminds me of where I grew up.

So many gorgeous trees.

You have such a fun job.

Well, it's harder than it looks to find the perfect Christmas tree.


Well, in addition to being the perfect height and shape and color, the tree has to have that X factor, that star quality.

What's so special about our tree?

It just feels meant to be.

I mean, I get Joey's letter, and then I bump into you.

That's not the hard part.

Convincing Sam to give you the tree is.

Well, maybe when I explain how important the tree is, the holiday spirit...


Sam isn't exactly the holiday spirit type.

If he had it his way, he'd go straight from Thanksgiving to Groundhog Day.



[Holly]: What's he doing here?

You know him?


I bumped into him in town.

That's my brother Sam. That's Joey's dad.


[Aimee]: Come on.

The Christmas tree farmer who lives in Chicago.

What's, uh, what's going on?

You bringing holiday cheer door to door now?

Something like that.

[chuckling] Okay.

[Aimee]: Holly, Sam.

-Sam, Holly. -Hi.

Hello again.


I'm here because I work for the Radcliffe Center.

It's my job to find the tree that goes in the Center, and this year, we want your tree to be the tree.

You lost me.

I didn't know that he did this, uh...

[laughs awkwardly]


I'm sorry. You can't have this tree.

Uh... this has never happened to me before.

Um... okay, well, maybe you could just think about it.

I mean, I know you personally aren't a fan of Christmas, but so many people are, and to them, this tree is a beautiful symbol of the season.

It's just not for sale.

Oh, I'm not asking to buy it.

It's donation based, and most people are happy to do it.

Listen, Holly...

Look, I feel really bad that you came all this way from Chicago, but...

I wish there was something I could do to help.

I'm so sorry.

It's okay.

I understand.

[phone rings with "Jingle Bells" ringtone]

Hang on. Excuse me.


So, did you find Joey?

[Holly]: Yeah, I found him.

So you have the tree?


The owner doesn't want to donate it.


Did you tell him that all of Chicago is expecting a Christmas tree lighting ceremony?

Get this... he doesn't care about the tree lighting ceremony.

Excuse me?


He doesn't even care about Christmas.

Who is this Grinch?

His name's Sam, and he's...

[sighs] a total Grinch.

Well, listen, the Holly I know does not take no for an answer.

You can do this.

You really think so?

Well, you have to. Andrea is not happy, and the ceremony is in nine days, and we do not have a backup.

Why does everybody keep telling me that?


[whispering] What am I going to do? Focus.

Okay, Christmas is about opening our hearts, right?

So I just have to... open his heart to the idea.

There you go! That's the Holly I know!



I'll call you when I have the tree.



I apologize. I got ahead of myself, and I'm not even sure that this is the tree, but I came all this way, and I'd just like to see it.

There's no harm in showing it to her.

Uh-- Uh--

You're going to muck up your boots.

I mean, it's way back there.


First rule of growing up on a farm... always have sensible shoes.


Oh, wow! It's beautiful!

Oh, it's gorgeous!

It's the perfect height.

The perfect height for what?

It's tall enough to stand against the skyscrapers, but short enough to be trucked through the city.


It's absolutely perfect.

I know.

You know, I've been around trees my whole life, and I haven't seen many like this.

It's... truly special.

It's right.

Yup. Right here.

Sam, if you were to say yes, your whole family would get to go to Chicago on an all-expenses paid trip, and you guys would be front and center as V.I.P.s at the tree lighting ceremony.


I don't care about being a V.I.P... but here's something I do care about.

39 years ago, my mom Leslie and my dad George bought this land and carved that there.

All they had was a mortgage and a dream, but this tree represented everything that they would watch grow.

That's beautiful.

Don't you want to share that story with the world?

Put their love on display for everyone to admire?


I want to keep it with my family, where it belongs.

And what about Joey?

It would mean so much to him.

Well, it would now, because he's eight, but trust me, 20 years from now, when this tree's still standing, it'll mean a lot more to him than him seeing it with some skyscrapers.


Listen, Holly, I admire your tenacity, but...

I mean, the answer is just no.

Oh, there's... there's Aimee there.


I have to...

Sorry again.

I really didn't want you to be disappointed.

No, I understand.

It's your parents' tree.

I just think that donating it could be special for your family.

I mean, there's something so moving about bringing joy to so many people.

What's wrong?

I thought Sam had told you.

Told me what?

Our mom passed away last year.


I'm really sorry to hear that.

That's why Sam doesn't want to give away this tree.

Okay. I got it.

I, uh, I'm going to be on my way.

Hey, Dad, dinner's almost ready!

All right, Joey, I'll be right in.

Miss Christmas!

I saw you on TV, and I wrote to you, and you came!

You came for our tree!

I have to tell Grandpa!

He didn't think she'd come!

Wait, Grandpa knew about the letter?

Come meet Grandpa!


[Aimee]: Hey, Dad.

[Joey]: Hi, Grandpa!

[Aimee]: Whoa, cooking up a storm in here.

[Joey]: Smells good.

Come on.

[Aimee]: Let's eat!

Grandpa, look who it is! Miss Christmas came!

[Holly]: Hi. Nice to meet you.

[George]: Welcome!

It's an enigma!

[all chuckling]

Grandpa just taught me the word enigma.

[George]: Well, I'm not sure it's an enigma exactly, but it sure is exciting!

And you're right on time for dinner.

Can you stay?

[Aimee]: What do you think?

I should get going.

No, it's dinner time, and you've come all this way.

Let us feed you.

I made grilled cheese sandwiches.

Kind of.

Thanks, pal.

[Joey]: We made pumpkin pie as well.

Please stay.

Yeah, stay.


-All right! -[Joey]: Yes!

[George laughs] Okay!

Looks so good...

Try the milk!

It's from our cows!

It's udderly delicious.

[they laugh, groan]

Oh, come on, stop being so moo-dy.


Well, I find it a-moo-sing.

[they laugh]

So, Miss Christmas...

Oh, it's actually Holly.

[Joey]: Wait, Miss Christmas isn't your real name?

Why do they call you that?

Well, it's a nickname my dad gave me.

I grew up on a Christmas tree farm, and I was always Christmas crazy, and I said "Miss Christmas" once on air, and it just stuck, but my real name's Holly.

So, Holly, you've come for Leslie's tree.

Oh, no, yeah...

I already told her no.

What? Dad!

You can't say no!

Grandma loved the tree lighting!

Yeah, it's true. She did.

Before the kids, Leslie and I used to go to Chicago every year to see the tree.

Yeah, and Grandma and me watched it every year on TV.

[Sam]: No, listen, Joey...

I never heard Grandma say that she wanted to give away her tree, and if she wanted to donate it, well, then, why didn't she?

I know you really want to see the tree on TV, but... what about after Christmas?

What then?

Um... it'll actually be milled into two-by-fours to provide lumber to build houses for veterans returning from overseas.

So even after the holidays, Leslie's tree will continue to bring joy to people.

[Sam]: I meant...

"then what" for us?


[Sam]: Because then we no longer have a tree.



I know you don't want to give the tree away...

Of course not.

But it's not just yours to give.


I don't want to cause any problems, so...

It's no problems.

The tree belongs to the family.

It's a family decision.

So, I tell you what, Holly... why don't you make your case, and then we'll discuss?


Right now?

No, we never discuss business at the table.


We'll meet tomorrow, after milking.



I've got to head out to the barn for a minute.

Excuse me.

[Holly]: I don't know, George. Maybe Sam's right.

Maybe the tree should stay.

Maybe... but I also have some mighty fond memories of Leslie at the Radcliffe tree.

The sound of her off-key caroling, and the way her face would brighten, seeing it light up...

I think she would have wanted to donate it.

But Sam doesn't agree, and I just don't want to upset anybody.

Don't you worry about my Sam.

He's an enigma.

He is definitely an enigma.


[phone rings with "Jingle Bells" ringtone]


Holly, that tree is perfect!

[Holly]: Yeah... except that I don't have it, and the McNarys might not give it to me.

This tree is flawless, and if anyone can convince them to donate it, it's you.

Mm, maybe, but just in case, we need to find a backup.

Oh, Andrea, I've got to go.

Oh, okay, Holly, I...


It's perfect. It's great.

♪ I'm feeling the holidays starting to set in ♪

♪ Something in the air is so crisp ♪

♪ Walking down the street I see families laughing ♪

♪ The children in the snow they're knee-deep ♪

♪ Momma's in the kitchen baking up a storm ♪

♪ Daddy's carving turkey... ♪ Hey.

Listen, I... think I've had enough holiday cheer for a little while.

Yeah, I know, and I just wanted to apologize for overstepping any boundaries.

Listen, Sam, I'm going to respect your wishes, and if you want me to leave right now, I will.



But I want you to know that I understand that your mom's tree isn't just a tree, okay, and the Radcliffe tree isn't just a tree.

My mom also passed away.

It happened when I was just a baby, and my dad raised me until he got sick when I was in college.

He was my very best friend, and if you can believe it, he actually loved Christmas as much as I do.


Yeah, right?

He was...

Mr. Christmas?


Actually, that's exactly what he was.

You know, and every year, with the Radcliffe tree, I get to celebrate my dad and his love for Christmas and beauty and magic.

I get to feel like he's here with me again.

Look, if I'm being honest with you, I just don't think there's anything you can say that's going to make me change my mind.

Yeah, doesn't mean I'll stop talking.


I'll listen to your pitch.

Unless that was it?

Oh, no. Unfortunately for you...

[both]: There's more.


Thank you.

[phone rings with "Jingle Bells" ringtone]


[Erin]: I just saw the picture!

Beyond perfect, right?

Are you talking about the tree or the man, because yes, ha, ha, he is perfect!

Erin, that's Sam.

The Grinch?

Ah, you know, he's not really a Grinch.

He just hates Christmas.

Maybe more of a Scrooge.

No, he's not really a Scrooge, either.

He's just... he's just protecting his family.

"Protecting his family?"

Wait a minute. Do you have feelings for Sam?


No! That's crazy.

Look, we're just... We're really different, and anyways, I don't know how I could love a man who doesn't like Christmas.

That's true.

Yeah. Anyway, listen.

The tree-lighting ceremony is in eight days.

Can we just stay focused?

Relax. Don't worry about it.

You're going to get the tree.

I'm too stressed to relax right now.

Wish me luck.

I'm rooting for you.

Just... tree joke. Never mind.

Good one.

Okay, thank you all for coming to my presentation.

And thank you for the cookies!


So I know you watch the Radcliffe ceremony on TV every year, but many people don't know its history, so I wanted to share it with you.

And you did all this for us?


I might have had some of it prepared already.


[Holly, recorded audio]: In 1930, during the Great Depression, the first Radcliffe Christmas tree was placed in the plaza for everyone who couldn't afford a tree.

Decorated with gum wrapper garlands and tin cans, it became a centerpiece of the community.

Neighbors gathered around it, caroled, and shared food.

Since then, every year, the Radcliffe Center has had a tree, and although the trees get more elaborate and spectacular every year, we never forget what it started as... a symbol of community... a place for people to come together... a gathering spot for families, friends, and neighbors to be cheered, supported, and marvel not just in the beauty of the season, but in each other...

which is what Leslie's tree could be to so many people.

I vote yes!

Holly, this is wonderful... but I think we need some more time to mull it over.

Could we have more time?

I wish I could give you all the time in the world.

I know this is a huge decision for all of you, but the tree lighting is literally around the corner, and it takes time to transport and decorate, and in the end, if you say no...

Could you at least give us till tomorrow?

And that way, that'll give us some time to ask any questions we might have.

What do you think?

Could you stay a little longer?

I'd love to.

-[Joey]: Yes! -Great.

[Holly]: Hey, Joey?

How about you show me around the Christmas festival?

Come on.

[they laugh]

The festival starts in a few days and goes straight through until Christmas.

It's really famous.

People come from all over the world to see it.

All over the midwest, anyway.

That's where Santa will be... and that's where the food is.

Everyone brings something.

Grandma and me used to make the best Christmas cookies.

Grandpa tried last year, but they were like... what'd you call them?


[Joey]: Yeah.

There's Owen. I'll be right back.


I like Klaus.

Well, I think you'd like any town that took Christmas this seriously.

It's good for us.

It's good for the businesses, good for town morale.

Good for everyone but you.

Why do you dislike Christmas so much?

[phone rings with "Jingle Bells" ringtone]

Oh, hang on...

Right. I'm going to be down here.



How did the pitch go?

Did they say yes? Do you have the tree?

Uh, no, not yet.

They responded really well, but they just need another day to decide.

Another day?

Holly, the ceremony is in eight days, We need at least four days to decorate, and that leaves us exactly three days to have a tree located, cut, and transported here.

What am I supposed to tell corporate?



Corporate has gotten involved, and they are not happy... and I'm sorry, Holly, but... they said if you don't have a "Radcliffe-worthy tree" here in Chicago in three days, then... don't bother coming back at all.


Good morning.

What are you doing up this early?

Oh, I'm always up early.

Just the farmer in me.

What are you doing here?

We do McNary family breakfast on Sundays, so...

I'm always early, I'm always waiting, so I grab coffee and head outside.

Care to join?

You had me at coffee.


Usually from the minute I wake up, it's just go, go, go.

It's so nice to have some time to just breathe.

It's so beautiful here, so peaceful.

It reminds me of home.

Of Chicago?

Oh, no, no, no, Chicago's where I live, but my family's farm... that was home.

I guess I always figured I'd end up back there.

So why didn't you?

Well, the plan was that I'd get a degree in horticulture and then return home.

My parents had this dream of expanding the farm, and as I got older, it became a dream of my own, something I wanted to do for myself, and for my mom, for her legacy, especially at Christmas time... but when my dad passed away, I had to decide between school and the farm.

I was 19 at the time, and the thought of running a business alone just was terrifying, right?

So I sold the land, and I got a job at Radcliffe, and I moved to Chicago...

And became a city girl.


Yeah, I guess I am just a little bit of a city girl.

I do get nervous if I'm more than a block away from a cup of coffee.

I guess I've grown accustomed to city life.

Sounds to me like you just want to find a place called home.

You got anything tying you to Chicago? Boyfriend?

Uh... no.

No, unfortunately, when you work as much as I do, it's kind of hard to date.

What about you?

[snickers] No, no, no, no.

After my divorce, I just... and you know what?

This time for Joey and I just to be by ourselves, it's been great.


But I think we're both ready.

She would just...

She would have to be really special.

[loud splash]

[gasps] Oh!

Oh, I'm so sorry!

Don't worry about it, don't worry about it.

You don't like my coffee? It's fine.

I got it. Here, hold this.

[whines] Thank you.

♪ All I want this year is you... ♪


He trades.

Ah! What's this?

Close. On the line.

Border... borderline.

It's completely undone.

[Holly]: Oh!

That's pretty good.

-Holly! -Hi!

[Sam]: "Holly"? Really?


Come here.

What is all this?

[Holly]: Egg nog French toast.

It's Christmas morning breakfast?

This is our mom's go-to Christmas morning breakfast.

I know. Sam told me... and it turns out that I have a pretty good recipe too.

You sure you don't need some of my help here?

Um, yeah.

Could you burn it for us?

Give me a shot. I'll see what I can do.

-Why don't you set the table? -Sure.

And there's juice that needs a pitcher, and maple syrup?

Got it.

[Sam]: Put that on the table?

♪ It's the best time of the year ♪

♪ To have someone by his side ♪

[Holly]: So I just secured the Norway spruce outside of Elkhart Lake as a backup.

[Erin]: I thought that that tree was 10 feet too short.

Well, that's the best backup that I found.

Do you have a better option?


I'm stumped.

Pun intended.

Don't worry. We won't even use it.

The McNarys will say yes.

Well, let's hope so, because if this backup isn't "Radcliffe worthy..."

I'm fired.

I've got to go.

I'm just pretending to be working but really, I'm wrapping Aimee's presents.

How did Aimee convince you to do that?

Oh, I offered to help.

To be honest, I love gift wrapping.

Of course you do.

I actually love all Christmas preparations.

I kind of go all out.


I want the tree to go to Chicago.


That's... that's great news.

Um... wow!

Um, can I ask what made up your mind?

Well, I was... just thinking about how happy the Radcliffe tree made Leslie, and how she made everyone around her happy, especially at Christmas, and I think this is one more opportunity for Leslie to bring joy to others, and I know she'd want you to take it.

I've got to go.

The cows are calling.

One, two, three, four, I declare one more.


[Sam]: Hey.


Hey, we have to take off, but maybe we'll see you tomorrow?


[Joey]: But we still haven't found the angel ornament.

I know, buddy. Come on.

I'm decorating our family wreath, and I wanted to put all of Grandma's favorite ornaments on it.

The angel was her most favorite.

[George]: Mm. You guys stay.

I'll head back.

You sure?

Enjoy yourselves.

Oh, wow...

What if we can't find it?

Well... oh...


I know you have your heart set on the angel ornament, but sometimes, when you're looking for one thing, you end up finding something else just as beautiful.

That was the first ornament I ever made.

I gave it to Grandma.

[Holly]: You know what?

And I bet this was her real favorite, and I think it's going to look perfect on your family wreath.

Aunt Aimee, can we decorate the inn?

[Aimee]: Sure!

Sam can help.



I can't just sit inside while you guys are out here decorating.

[muttering] About time.

Ha, ha.

It's beautiful.

It's just like how Grandma used to do it.

Let's put the bow...

Untangling all these lights brought back traumatic Christmas memories for me, just so you know.

Can you really say you've never enjoyed the holidays?

Not even a little?

I, uh, I haven't always been a Grinch.

Aw, you're not a Grinch.

You're much more of a Scrooge.

[laughs] Um... thanks?

I'll get it.


This Scrooge actually tolerated Christmas at one point.


How spirited of you.

Hey... you get divorced and your mom passes away?

Just makes everything... you know?

Got it?


All right, I think we're done.

Let's take a look.

[Joey]: It's perfect!

Ah. Nice.

All right, hey, we've got to head home, so why don't you go hop in the truck, okay?


I'm going to start...


Sam, being here with you has been... amazing... but I do need to figure this out, and I'm running out of time.

Look, I'm sorry.

I've just been dragging my feet. I...

I'm sure you just want to get back on your way, so...

I'm just still on the fence.

Thanks for helping.

[Aimee and Holly giggle]

Thank you, Holly.

Joey is so happy, and it's so nice to see the inn decorated again.


Between you and me, I think even Sam enjoyed himself.

Me too.

[laughs] Here, I'll take that.


[gasps] Ooh, wait!


Is this the ornament Joey was looking for?

We should tell him so he can put it on the wreath.

Actually, you know where I want to put that?

On my mom's tree... at the Radcliffe Plaza.



I keep thinking of the great memories from the tree.

In the winter, we would collect boughs and make wreaths, then in the summer, we would have picnics under the tree's shade.

I'll miss the tree, but it'll be so special to see it in Chicago.

Now you just have to convince Sam, which, after today, I don't think will take as much convincing as I thought.

It's beginning to look a little like Christmas.

[Erin]: So you've got three out of the four.

That's a majority vote.

Well... I want it to be unanimous.

I don't want Sam to feel like I stole something from him.

Well... fingers crossed that he says yes tomorrow.

I mean, he could ask for one more day.

It sounds like he just wants to spend more time with you.

That is not what he's doing.

Although... staying doesn't sound so bad.

Klaus is lovely... and, um...

I'm actually starting to think that maybe the tree should stay.

Maybe it belongs here.




Turn on the news.

And with a week until the tree lighting, the Radcliffe Center tree is still not here.

The "City in a Garden" might be tree-less.

Looks like the heart of America might have lost its Christmas Spirit.

[text chimes]


Listen, have a great time.



Thanks for coming.

What's going on?

So I know you need more time to think about the tree, but I also know that I was just going to spend the whole day working and stressing, so I decided, in the spirit of Christmas and slowing down, to take the day off and partake in some holiday activities.


Yeah. I thought maybe you'd like to join me.

Is this, like, a personal mission of yours to get me to change how I feel about Christmas?

This is just a couple of friends enjoying the holiday season.

Okay. I can do that.




[tune of "O Christmas Tree" playing]


Oh yeah.

Oh, no. No, no, no. That's for tourists.

[Holly]: Oh no, that's for you.

[she giggles, he mutters]

Let's go.

[tune of "Good King Wenceslas" playing]

Ryan, seriously?

You in on this?

After you, fine sir.

Oh, no, no, no.

After you, Miss Christmas.


This is a first.

[woman]: Merry Christmas!

Yeah, yeah. Ha, ha.


Grandma and me used to do this!

[Holly]: Really?

My dad and I used to do this too.

We'd hand-deliver as many Christmas cards as possible.

Now, this is a very special card.


Because it's from you to me, and when I get it in the mail, I'm going to remember this moment.

[Joey]: Cool!

So I know you said you and your grandma used to bake cookies for the festival...

We're going to bake Christmas cookies?

Yes, we are, but first, we're going to make the hot chocolate to drink while we bake the cookies.


Your grandma might have had the best cookie recipe, but I have the best hot chocolate recipe.

Mm, okay.

[Holly]: Oh...

That's right, we'll be the judge of that.

Oh, it's on.

Let's go.



[Holly]: Okay, are we ready for this?

[Joey]: Oh, yeah.



[Joey]: Nice.


They're perfect!

Definitely not charcoal.

Did you think they would be?



Okay, why don't you put the cookies over here, and we can get started on the icing.

[Joey]: Sure.

[they laugh]

Before cutting down trees was the tradition, people used to put evergreen boughs in their homes, and the boughs were a reminder that no matter how harsh the winter, spring would always return, and that's what a Christmas tree is, a reminder of hope.


It's just so beautiful.

[Sam]: Don't apologize.

I'd like to look at something the way you look at that tree.

Grandma's tree is going to look awesome in Chicago!

You know what?

I bet there's a good one right through there.

Want to go check it out?

[Joey]: Yeah.

Thanks for being so patient.

Klaus and your family makes being patient pretty easy... and honestly, Sam, whatever you decide about the tree, I'm just so happy that I came.

[clears throat]

Me too. [chuckles]

[Joey]: I found it!

I found our Christmas tree.

[Sam]: Yeah? Did you get a good one?

[Joey]: It's perfect.

This might work, huh?

Maybe we should ask the tree expert.


Joey, how do you make finding the perfect tree look so easy?

Are you after my job?

[Sam chuckles]

[Sam]: I think you're old enough for this now, huh?


Yeah. Okay. Come on, get in here.

We do long, just smooth, slow strokes, okay?

You let the saw do the work.

I'll help you get started.

Got it?


Good job.

[Sam]: All right, here. Think this will do it.

Yeah? That's good, right?


["Angels We Have Heard on High" playing]

Joey, you're a pro.


Okay, I have something for you.



[Sam]: What?

[Joey]: What is it?

It's an angel!

[Holly]: My mother's family has a tradition of using an angel instead of a star on the top of the tree.

It's a reminder of everyone we love looking out for us.

It's actually a tradition I brought to the Radcliffe Center.

I have one just like it on my tree.

It's perfect.

[Holly]: I just think it's so beautiful how our mothers have influenced our Christmases.

[Sam]: What do you say, buddy?

Thank you.

[Holly]: You're welcome.

Thank you.

[Holly]: On the farm, we always had a fresh Christmas tree, with roots.

My dad would always say, "Love is like a Christmas tree.

It needs to have roots and wings."


Uh, well, um...

Let's get ready for the festival tomorrow.


I'll meet you back at the inn.


Thanks for that.

No problem.

So, uh.. was an entire day of Christmas activities just pure torture for you?

Oh, uh... no.


You know, what would you say if I told you it was actually really nice?


I would say "Operation Lift Sam's Christmas Spirits" is working... and I had a great day too.

Your family's lovely...


And being in Klaus makes me feel like...

You're home again?


Okay. Well...

I'm going to... I'm going to go.

Well, you are... overlooking one Christmas tradition.

Well, underlooking.

Oh, the vile weed?

And I thought that was just for holiday people.

Well... maybe I'm re-thinking my Grinchhood.


How can I not?

[Joey]: Dad!

We can't find the sweaters.

All right, I'll be right up.

It's okay.

Good night.

Good night.

[Aimee]: Okay, it looks good!

She'll be down any sec, right?

[Aimee]: Mine's uglier than yours.

[Joey]: No, mine's uglier.


[George whispering] Oh, here...

[Holly laughs] What is going on?

Leslie made them.

Every year, she'd try to make her ugliest sweater yet.

She was... repeatedly successful.


It's a family tradition.

So, what do you think?

I think it's truly... truly ugly.

The ugliest.

Well, don't laugh too soon, because... ♪ da da-da da! ♪

[they laugh]


We have one for you!

Oh, that one's really ugly!

Oh yes...



Okay. Where's yours?

[they laugh]

Join us!

That's the ugliest.


[Aimee]: This has always been my family's favorite day.

[Holly]: I can see why.

I'm so happy you're here.

Aw, me too.

This is the best Christmas in a long time, but I'm actually eight, so I only remember, like, the last three Christmases.

[they laugh]

[carolers]: ♪ We wish you a Merry Christmas ♪

♪ We wish you a Merry Christmas And a Happy New Year ♪

♪ Good tidings we bring To you and your kin ♪

♪ We wish you a Merry Christmas And a Happy New Year ♪


[Holly]: Ooh.

Smell this.

Oh, no, that's bad.

No, no, this is...


Thank you.

Oh, look at the beautiful scarves!

Hey, ma'am.

Erin would love this.

What are you going to get your family for Christmas?

Gift certificates.

You know what goes really well with a gift certificate?

A personalized present!

There's only 20 days until Christmas.

You'd better start shopping.

Well, then, what would I do Christmas Eve?

Oh, there's your Christmas spirit!

There you are! We've been looking for you.

We've been around.

Joey's waiting for us to take a picture with Santa.

Oh! Okay.

Okay, big smiles!

[camera clicks]

There we go.

[Sam]: We're up. Let's do it.

[Aimee]: Our turn.

Hi, Santa.

What are you doing over there?

No, no, no, no, no.

No, Holly, come on!

-No, no, it's fine. -Come on, Holly!

[Aimee]: Join us.

Get in there.

All right, guys, everyone smile for the camera and say Christmas!

Say "Miss Christmas"!

Miss Christmas!

[camera clicks]

Okay, who's hungry?

Are you? Let's do it.

[Sam]: Thank you, guys.

Your picture.

[Holly]: Thank you.

-Merry Christmas. -Merry Christmas.


♪ All the stockings you will find ♪

♪ Hanging in a row... ♪ Oh, it's so delicious.

That looks so good.

Okay! Thank you.

[text chimes]


Hey. How's the food?

Actually, really good.

What'd you get?


Ah, you hit the healthy table.

Um... Sam, I...

I really don't mean to rush you, but I do need an answer.

I know. I'm sorry.

When you grow up in Klaus, it's almost like Christmas is a year-round thing.

You know, we're either setting up for the festival or we're recovering from it, you know, and my mom, she was in the center of all of it.

I mean, growing up, we did everything, and she made it all so fun...

and then you come along, with your ultra-positive, bordering-on-annoying Christmas attitude, and then you tell me that...

Christmas is a time to celebrate the people that you lost... that it makes you feel closer to them.

That's the spirit of Christmas.


That's you... and I feel it.

My family feels it. Have you seen them?

They're... I haven't seen them this happy.


It's okay.

Did you mean what you said about my mom's tree being a place where people will gather and get together?


It's the center, the heart.

It's a reminder that... that we're not alone, that we're home.

At least, it's... what your family has been to me in this short time.

Okay, you can have the tree.

Are you sure?

Well, now you look like you don't want it.

No, I do!

I do, um...

[George]: So, what's going on here?


I, uh...

I just told Holly she could take the tree.

You're saying yes?

Yes! Thank you!

Our tree is going to Chicago!

You're going to Chicago.

Even better.


This will be so special.

I'm going to go tell work.

Hi, Andrea?

Holly... please tell me...

Yes, we have it. We have the tree.

You can schedule transport for tomorrow, 'cause we're going to make it in time.

I knew it!

I knew if anyone could do it, it would be you, Holly.

Thanks... although I wasn't always so sure myself.

Well, unlike Corporate, I never doubted you for a second.

Okay, well, uh, just call me if there are any problems.

I'm with the McNarys, so I've got to go.

Okay! Great.

That's a relief... but I'm going out there to supervise delivery.



So cute!




[tune of "12 Days of Christmas" playing]

♪ Baby let's stay inside tonight ♪

♪ 'Cause there's a chill in the air outside ♪

♪ A cold wind's beginning to blow ♪

♪ It's startin' to feel like snow ♪ You know... every year, I'm "Miss Christmas", but... this feels like my first real Christmas in a long time.

♪ Gonna hunker down for two days or so ♪

♪ It's startin' to feel like snow ♪

[phone rings with "Jingle Bells" ringtone]


[Erin]: Hi! Did you talk to Andrea?

She's going to be there any minute with transport.

I can't believe you pulled this off.

Me neither.

How's Sam?

I guess I took you up on that new holiday tradition after all.

Oh, yeah? What's that?

Spending the holidays with a special someone.

You and Sam?

That's so great!

Wait, but how is that going to work?

Are you guys going to do long distance?


I was thinking about staying here.

I mean, I would get the tree and carry us through the tree lighting ceremony, but after that...

I'm thinking about leaving Radcliffe and giving it a shot out here.


I mean, I know it sounds like I'm rushing into things, but I would not be doing this for Sam.

I'd be doing this for me... because...

Erin, I finally feel like I'm home, and this just feels right.

It is a big difference...



But Holly, you've worked so hard for your job.

You are your job.

No. No, I'm more than this job, but I am so grateful to Radcliffe and everything that it's taught me, but it is time for me to get out of the city and just get back to my roots.

Look, I'm going to do what I said I'm going to do.

I'm going to get this tree, and then I'm leaving.

I have to follow my heart, and my heart is elsewhere.

I can't pretend.

Erin... no, Erin, this is right.

I can feel it.

Will you still come visit me in Chicago?

Or am I going to have to go over there?


Oh, um, can I call you back? I've got to go.

Okay, bye!

[truck engine starts]

Sam, where are you going?

Transport will be here any minute.

[turns off engine]

Tell them it's off.

I've changed my mind. You can't have our tree.


Yeah, sorry for wasting so much of your time.

Um... what is going on?

I have to... I have to "follow my heart."

Right? That's what you do, right?

You follow your heart.

I'm so confused.

I'm not.

Sam, I...

You know, I can't believe that this was all just a game.

What, you get close to us, you pretend you're part of our family, and then...

You know, I can take it. I'm a big boy, but how can you do this to Joey?

He's eight! He's a kid!

Sam, being here these past few days has been amazing...

You can drop the whole "Miss Christmas" act now.

I heard you on the phone, talking about how you will do everything it takes to get that tree, and then leave.

Sam, I was talking about...

Yeah, it's not happening.

Go home.

[Andrea]: Holly!

I have transport waiting.

Where's our tree?

[Holly]: Uh, it's not our tree.

It never was.

But it's okay. We've got a backup.

We're good.

And just so you know, when I said I was going to get the tree and leave?

I meant leave Chicago... not here.




♪ It's that time again ♪

♪ For love and wishing ♪

♪ For everything that shines ♪

♪ The time for giving ♪

♪ Dreams wrapped in ribbons ♪

♪ Something to make you smile ♪

♪ Be the spark in your smile ♪ Hey.

The backup tree arrived.

It's much taller in person.

Very "Radcliffe worthy."

Do you want to come take a look?

No, thanks.

Well, hey, what are you doing tonight?

I could come over.

We could decorate your tree.

I think I'm just going to skip decorating this year.

Come on, you can't skip decorating.

You're Miss Christmas.

I don't think I want to be Miss Christmas anymore.


♪ Oh, you burn bright ♪

There you are.


What's going on?

I don't know.

No, I do know.

I miss her.

It's definitely quieter here since she left.

She makes her presence known, doesn't she?

So, what happened?

I messed up.

I fell for her so fast, Dad, and it's...

I don't know, I got scared.

That's human.

When I met your mother, I was terrified.

I thought, now that I know this person exists, how can I live without them?

And how do you?

Day to day.

I count my blessings... but you don't have to live without Holly.

Go get her.

No, she doesn't want that.

But you don't know until you try.

You know, Sam, about 40 years ago, your mother and I planted that tree, and she said something to me that I'll never forget.

She said, "Georgie, "we're going to have our good times, "and we're going to have our bad times, "but promise me one thing... that we keep growing, just like that tree."


Love is scary, but losing love is scarier, and I'll tell you one thing for sure... it's worth losing it to have had it.

Holly's a great woman...

[chuckles] and your mother would have loved her.

It's up to you, pal.

I love you, son.

Thanks, Dad.

[knocking on door]




Hey! What are you doing here?

I thought you were on a date.

Well, I was, but I'd rather spend time with you.

Brought some edible Christmas cheer.

How much longer do I have to be the cheery one?

It is exhausting.

Let's decorate this tree.

Come on! Where do we begin?

Let's see, what do we have here?


This one's nice.

No, no, that... that goes on the top.

It has to catch the light.

Um... how about this?

Well... the ornaments go on last, okay?

It goes, it goes... it goes lights, and then garlands, and then ornaments.

There's an order.

Lead the way.

I know what you're doing.

So, what's going on with you?

Is this about Sam?

Well, yeah, mainly... but it's also being with the McNarys made me realize what's missing... made me realize what I want more than anything... and that's family.

Listen, I love my life.

I'm not complaining, but...

I just don't have family to share it with.

Well, you have me.

I promise to always be your annoying surrogate sister.


And you do a great job.


But I know.

You want Sam.

I just want a home...

and I want a family.

Well, the Holly I know never takes no for an answer.

Well, the Holly I know is always protecting herself.

Well, you got hurt.

That's life. That's love.

You know?

It hurts sometimes, but you have to pick yourself up and start again.

We can't give up, especially you, because you're Miss Christmas.

What do you always say?

At Christmas time, we have to open up our hearts, even when it's hard... especially when it's hard.



Why don't I pour us a little Christmas cheer...


And you can decorate the tree.



Talked to Andrea. Angel's all yours.

Yes! Thank you!

Oh, almost forgot. Some fan mail came for you.

It's addressed to "Miss Christmas."

Who's it from?

I don't know. There's no return address.

[Joey]: "Dear Holly, we miss you.

"My dad misses you most of all, "even though he tries to pretend he doesn't.

"He's an enigma, remember?

"Come back soon, please.

Sincerely, Joey."


All right, we've got a big day today.

You guys ready for this?

Okay... load 'em up.

You got my letter!


[George]: Welcome.

Is he here?

No, he's running errands till sundown.

We spread the word around town.

Sounds like there's going to be a big crowd.


All right, let's get started.

What's in there?

Well, if the tree can't come to Radcliffe, then Radcliffe is going to come to the tree.


[Holly]: Higher on that ball.

[Erin]: Higher on the ball!

A little more.

To the left.


Tighter on those strands.

Tighter on the strands!

[Holly]: They need to be straight.


Okay, bring out "The Lady."

Bring out The Lady!

Would you...!

I'm so sorry.

It looks great.


[everyone applauds]

Watch this.

[hydraulics whir]

♪ It's 20 degrees ♪

♪ The snow on the trees ♪

♪ Makes the world look like crystal ♪

♪ Icicles hang like silver meringue ♪

♪ And outside it's just blissful ♪

♪ I can't guess... ♪ This is my favorite part.

♪ ... and ready to go? ♪

♪ How often do we get a day ♪

♪ To play in the snow? ♪

♪ I want so spend this snow day with you ♪ Holly...

Leslie would have loved this.

[Aimee]: Absolutely.


Aw, Joey...

This is the most beautiful tree ever.

Ah, just wait until sundown.

How are you going to top this for next year?

I won't.

It's your job now.


I spoke to Andrea, and we both agreed that you are the only one for the job.


Thank you.

Sam just called.


He'll be home in an hour.

Almost show time.


[crowd chatter]

[Aimee]: Sam!

What's going on?

You'll see.

[applause, cheering]

[crowd]: Aw...

You're all I've been thinking about.

I am so sorry.

It's okay. It's okay.

I was rude, hurtful, terrified... of losing you.

Isn't it amazing?

I've never seen anything like it.

I mean, come on, how'd you pull this off?

With a lot of help.

Your family thought Klaus could use a place to gather, and thought that this could be part of the festival every year.


Every year...


It is unreal. and I personally think it's just as perfect as the Radcliffe tree.

I don't know.

[crowd applauds]

[Holly]: No, no.

It's even more perfect because of who's around it.


Listen, everyone, thank you.

My mom was... the most nurturing person ever, and I always thought she was one of a kind... and then I met someone who has the same spirit...


"Miss Christmas" to all of you.

You are everything Christmas stands for, which is simply... giving to others, and this is just one more example, because the only reason that we're all here together now... is because of you.


So, welcome, everyone, to the first Klaus Christmas Tree lighting!

[tune of "Good King Wenceslas" playing]

No one's ever said anything like that to me before.

Oh, I'm not done.

Yeah, unfortunately for you...

-There's more. -There's more. Yeah.

You know, you said to me that Christmas was about opening your heart... which is easier said than done... but you opened mine, and I want to say thanks.

You still thinking about leaving the Radcliffe Center?

I already left.



I'm kind of homeless.

No, you're not.

Yeah, when I got back to Chicago, I realized...

I don't want to find the Radcliffe tree.

I want to grow it.

Well, you know, Klaus doesn't have a Christmas tree farm, and we actually have the room for it, and as for growing the Radcliffe tree, maybe this is a good start.

In 50 years, we can donate it.

It actually takes 80 years to get big enough, but-- yeah, but we can watch it grow together.

How did you know I was coming?

Well, one, if you weren't, I was coming to get you.

Um, but two...

Holly? Could we borrow you a moment?


-Okay. -Go ahead.

[reporter]: Last night, we had the tree lighting at Chicago's Radcliffe Center.

Tonight, Radcliffe has come to Klaus, Wisconsin, and here we have Miss Christmas to tell us how that happened.

Well, it all started with a letter from a really special boy named Joey, and, um... he's here.

Can he join us?

Of course.

Okay. Joey!

Hi, Joey.

So you wrote a letter to donate this tree to the Radcliffe Center?


I wanted the whole world to see my grandma's tree...

And guess who mailed the letter?

[people chuckle]

[Holly]: Okay, well...

I guess we're ready for the main attraction.

-Whoo! -Yeah!

Here we go!

And I wrote the second letter.

I just carved the tree and crossed my fingers.

[Holly]: Okay, buddy.

Go ahead!

-Really? -Go for it.

Oh yeah!

[Sam]: All right, shall we count it down?

Three... two... one...

[wild cheering]

[tune of "Deck the Halls" playing]



♪ I don't wanna deck the halls or jingle all the way... ♪ Why aren't you looking at the tree?

Because I finally found something to look at the way you look at that tree.

♪ On my Christmas list ♪

♪ Is my first Christmas kiss with you... ♪ Merry Christmas.

Merry Christmas.

♪ Baby, yeah ♪

♪ Under the mistletoe with you ♪