Wonderfully illustrated, this heartwarming tale is based upon a true story of the author's great-uncle, Frankie. Every Christmas, the Stowell family decorates their mantle with precious oranges, one for every Stowell child. Their Pa goes out of his way, by horse and buggy, to get these oranges. One Christmas, when Frankie is chosen to be the Christmas angel in the pageant play, there is a terrible storm and Pa hasn't returned home with the oranges. Will Christmas really be Christmas without their oranges? Will Pa make it home to share the holiday with his family?
The Stowell family is abuzz with holiday excitement, and Frankie, the youngest boy, is the most excited of all. But there's a cloud over the joyous season: Tomorrow is Christmas Eve, and Pa hasn't returned yet from his trip to Lansing. He promised to bring back the oranges for the mantelpiece. Every year there are nine of them nestled among the evergreens, one for each of the children. But this year, heavy snows might mean no oranges . . . and, worse, no Pa!
This is a holiday story close to Patricia Polacco's heart. Frankie was her grandmother's youngest brother, and every year she and her family remember this tale of a little boy who learned--and taught--an important lesson about giving, one Christmas long ago
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