Young Alex is beyond excited on Christmas Eve. He knows that Christmas celebrates the birthday of Jesus Christ, and he cannot wait for tomorrow to come - he wants a puppy of his own to play with and love. On Christmas Day, he opens a large box with, yes, a puppy inside. Alex names him Zipper! However, when grandparents come bearing gifts, Zipper bounds out through the open door.
Alex and his mother then begin a neighborhood adventure as they search for a runaway dog and meet neighbors with different winter holiday celebrations and traditions: the Hindu Diwali, the Jewish Hanukkah, the Latinx Las Posadas, and the African American Kwanzaa. Alex then returns home for a Christmas feast, happy with his new canine companion and the knowledge that his neighborhood is filled with amazing people who are more alike than different.