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Wednesday, December 4, 2013

This Candy Cane Has A Back Story Or It's A Writing Prompt

This used to be a candy cane decoration that my husband bought, and my daughter placed along the walkway in our front yard.

If you've been around Christian circles during Christmas time, you've probably heard the story of the candy cane. The legend tells the story of how the candy cane got started.

I'm sure I could Google the story, copy it, put it in quotes and give proper credit. But, instead I'll paraphrase:

It has to do with a candy maker who wanted to tell the Gospel of Christ, and so he twisted together white and red which are said to symbolize our sins, Christ's blood, and how his sacrifice washed us white as snow.

If you want to Google the legend of the candy cane to read it in its entirety, that's great! In the meantime, the candy cane pictured above tells a different story. This one has a back story of its own, and it's not pretty.

First - STOP - BEFORE YOU READ THE REAL STORY BEHIND THIS CANDY CANE - IF YOU WANT TO, STOP RIGHT HERE AND USE THIS PICTURE AS A WRITING PROMPT.  When you and your students are done, you can read what really happened below:



This candy cane started out at a factory as plastic, and was molded into the shape of a cane with red and white colors twisted together. I'm not sure, but I think we picked it up at the Dollar Tree for a buck.

For a few years now, this candy cane has weahtered the cold temperatures, snow, ice, and even a 75 degree thunderstorm in December one year. We have put this candy cane, along with four of its friends, outside along either our driveway or our front walk.

Everything seemed well, and the candy canes made our house look like it was kissed with sugary wonder as the red and white accented our family's nativity scene.

Everything seemed well, that is, until one day this week.

This year, my daughter decided to help put out the outside decorations. On a fairly warm day this weekend, she and my husband headed outside to make the place look ready for the holidays.

We have a really nice heat painted tin sculptures of Mary, Joseph and Baby Jesus. They are accented with rope lights that subtly light up. My husband likes to put these out each year to display our faith during the Christmas season. He also hangs a lit 3D star of David above the scene.

We don't go all out with additional decorations, as we want the center to be on the birth of Christ.  But, over the years, we have accumulated a few snowman pathway lights, a wreath, a few lights over one bush, and some plastic candy canes.

My daughter did a great job sinking the candy canes into the ground, and the place was looking festive.

...Then, the mailman came to pick up some packages we had left for him on our front porch.

We are still not completely sure how it happened, but when my husband opened the door, he saw the mailman on the ground picking up pieces of a broken candy cane.

A very apologetic and embarrassed mailman began to explain that he didn't see the candy cane because he was carrying some large packages.

That's how the candy cane got broken, but there are still a few questions that remain a mystery:

He must have seen the row of candy canes when he arrived at the front porch to pick up the packages we were mailing. So, did he forget it was there and try to cut through the yard and ended up tripping over a candy cane?

If so, why didn't the candy cane land toward the grass and not onto the sidewalk? And why is it broken into so many pieces?  I mean, this thing is shattered.

Did he drop the packages on top of the candy cane when he tripped?  Or did he not even trip, but simply dropped the packages?

Yes, this candy cane has a sad back story. And, some of it will always remain unknown.

Of course our main concern is that the mailman was not injured.  But, in the meantime, my husband found some even bigger candy canes and set them up just to have some fun. Surely, the mailman won't miss these.

(By the way, he removed them before the mailman saw them).


So, if you wrote your own back story to my shattered candy cane; I'd love to hear it.

Please comment below, or post a link to your story.

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