A taste of christmas. A repeat due to a long call out but there is a new Constance Claus idea rattling about in my brain… https://decidinglybob.wordpress.com/2016/12/05/mrs-claus-fixes-christmas-2/
Constance Claus loves Christmas as much as she loves her husband but, every year from November until December 26th a disaster happens. And at his tremendous age, Santa hated problems. Constance tried to plan ahead as, let’s be honest; most people like to have a trouble free life.
Last year it was the missing gingerbread recipe. The recipe was ancient, almost as old as the cook who had the job of baking five million perfectly formed gingerbread houses. Every inch of the North Pole was searched. This meant the elves were hungry, a lot more than usual and so Constance spent most of her days cooking and preparing meals. If, she often reasoned afterwards, if she hadn’t been busy feeding the hungry elves, then she would have solved the puzzle earlier. She found it – under the cook’s hat. It had risen as high as his pastry and was stuck to the top of it.
This year she began her anti disaster plan in July. The first thing she did was to make certain there was a copy of the recipe on her tablet. Next, she checked there was an awesome mountain of buttons for the Minion’s dungarees,then, enough paint for the rocking horses and on and on her list went. But she with the help of chief elf Enda, worked their way through it.
So by the second week of November she was wondering if she could finally relax.
The workshop was thundering through the long menu of toys and electrical gadgets that needed to be made. The new computer department was turning out to be a great addition as the technicians had rigged up a mechanical serving belt which brought the food straight from the kitchen to the tables at lightening speed.
“Too fast for me,” moaned Santa as yet again he was too slow to collect his dinner off the moving belt and it whizzed on to Slim who snagged it.
“But dear you are looking all the trimmer for it,” Constance said.
She was sitting before a pretty log fire with Summer, her cat, snoozing on her lap, when her walls began to shake and rumble. Strange, thought Constance. However, when the rumbling increased she jumped to her feet and went to investigate. Summer slid to the ground, shook himself and went off to find a more reliable less jumpy cushion to snooze on.
Constance wondered if Santa and the elves were playing a trick on her so she was a little wary of opening her front door. This was just as well, because when she opened it a chunk of snow slid off the roof and landed on her doorstep.
“This won’t do,” Constance muttered and picked her way through the mountain of snow.
Then she stopped and stared. She giggled because she couldn’t help it. The reindeers were playing dodge the snowball. And due to their very heavy appearance they were making the ground shake and groan under their hooves.
She frowned. “This is terrible, Rudolph you are looking a little chunky tonight.” She mused and then stopped and sniffed the air. He smelt of chocolate and something else. She stared at him.
“Is that marshmallow sticking to your coat?” He backed away and looked at her with huge sad eyes.
She went back inside but instead of sitting in her comfortable chair she peeped out the window. She noticed some of the reindeer sniff the air and stroll off towards the elves living room. Constance decided to follow.
In the elves living room she discovered the elves were having a snack. They had taken their shoes off and were sitting before a huge fire toasting smores. “Where did you learn how to do that?” She asked Santa who was managing to toast four at a time.
“Internet.” He said, “Try some. They are delish.”
She tilted her head to one side, “how long have you been doing this?
“Oh only a week or two. It’s just that we get so hungry with the extra work. It is a nice way to relax and we tell stories then head to bed.”
She looked around the room and noticed many of the elves were already asleep in their chairs. Just then the door opened and a young reindeer entered. He walked straight to a sleeping elf and very gingerly took the uneaten smore from the elf’s hand before moving to the next elf.
Constance did not want to be a spoilsport but she was worried. The reindeer needed to be fit and Santa, she knew would eat until his suit was close to bursting.
Over the next two weeks no matter what she did, the reindeer always found a way into the elves sitting room. She wondered if they were paying the elves to leave a door open. No, that is totally silly, she decided.
It was December and the workshop was producing toys at a frantic rate.
There was a “bang” followed by a “pop” and everything stopped. There was a shocked silence. Enda shouted, “lets find the fault.” An hour later they knew the problem. The generator couldn’t produce enough electrical power.
“We need to produce more electricity.It’s knackered.” Was the final statement from their workshop maintenance team.
“Right early lunch and lets chew on it.” Santa said.
Constance went for a walk. She always thought better when left to think by herself. Rudolph accompanied her, with Summer sitting on his back.
“I know you are trying to get fit and slim Rudolph but it is not working. You need a high intensity work out. Cross fit for Reindeers, I think.”
She let the thought rattle about in her head for a while and when she returned she called the maintenance team to her.
Three days later the workshop was producing more toys by the hour.
Enda smiled and said, “Thank you Constance for your brilliant idea.”
Constance beamed at him. “You are welcome and I think everyone is happy with this ….or almost everyone.”
Enda grinned. “Well if Santa insists on eating so much then he has no choice. He can’t have it all his own way, even if his name is Santa.”
They both looked over at the line of reindeer waiting their turn to get on the exercise wheel. Beyond the exercise wheel there was another line of reindeer happily munching on smore flavored hay. Santa walked alongside the reindeer. A giant pedometer declared, “well done Santa just 5,000 more steps to earn a whole smore this evening.”
Santa wasn’t worried as he had a date on the 25th with a dog called Bob who was currently stashing marshmallows in his christmas stocking. The deal was, Santa would trade his jelly babies for Bob’s marshmallows, then it would be home to smores and more smores.
This is a retelling of a story I published on decidinglybob.wordpress.com
It will pull the child from every adult and get us in the festive mood.
Constance Claus and an elves wish.
Christmas Eve – two am – Constance Claus decided it was time. She tiptoed through the snow filled square. Though the sound of the elves snoring was reassuring Constance was being extra careful. She knew Enda could hear a feather drop in snow.
“I wish I could snore in harmony like them.” She paused, mid step to listen. “Ahh. I know the name of this tune. Let’s get this party started.'” Bending down to rub her white cat, she murmured, “we agree, don’t we Summer?”
The cat shook her paws before continuing on to the doorway of the workshop.
Constance believed her idea was brilliant. She was tired of listening to the elves moaning about the amount of snow. They are getting themselves in such a state that they are catching cold. She shivered at the thought of catching such a dreadful thing.
With her hand on the door knob, she paused to check again. Their snores floated on ice cold air to her. Satisfied she walked inside, flicking on lights as she went.
The workshop looked empty and vast. It wasn’t that way an hour ago.
* * * * *
Panic had been the order of the day. For a start, getting Santa into the sleigh proved to be difficult.
“Steady on, mind my trousers.” He shouted as the elves formed a line and pushed him into the sleigh.
“Let’s fit the other toys in around him when we squish him down,” Enda suggested.
“Hey Enda, less of the squishing. I can sit down.” Santa roared.
“You do the squishing bit.” Enda’s brothers, Slim, Noel and Sam, sang. They preferred to stay out of his way during the fraught filled minutes of final preparations.
Constance walked up to Santa, “Wait dear, you forgot your thermal insulated gloves.” She narrowed her eyes, “did you remember to put the matching socks on?”
He gave a nod then grimaced because they were hotter than he liked.
She said, “Good. I packed you a snack.”
At the mention of food he cheered up.
“And some liquorice for the reindeers.”
When he scowled, she chuckled, “a thermal mug of hot chocolate and a barrel of ginger nut elf biscuits for you. Take your time. Remember the list. Drive carefully Mr. Claus.”
Santa scowled. “That incident with the plane was not my fault, the idiots came closer for a second look. The reindeers lost their bootees with fright. As for the traffic lights in the main street, it wasn’t my fault, Mrs. Claus, I didn’t know they could swivel.”
The elves scurried away to check the reindeer’s boot laces.
She kissed the tip of his nose then worked her way around the reindeers planting a kiss on top of every head or they would be jealous.
“Have a nice rest, be kind to yourself Constance do something for you just for a change.” With those words he left.
“I will indeed,” she said. Armed with a giant cup of creamy coffee embellished with a sprinkling of coco and a flake bar, to get her creative motor running she began to plan. She liked inventing things, and tonight she felt like doing so.
“Deciding to invent something is easy. The problem is doing it without causing further complications along the way.” Constance bit into her flake bar. “Oh dear I will have to be careful. I remember poor little Elsie’s hair. Poof, up it went in a rainbow cloud of smoke when I made a hair curling tongs for her. And poor Jake tested my first sock warmers. He couldn’t bear to reveal his scorched foot to anyone for a long time. It looked so hideous. I got sick when I changed the bandages, but then I suppose that was my punishment for the damage I did.”
To dispel that nasty image she nibbled on the flake bar. Summer neatly caught the bits that fell towards the floor. There was silence for a long time as Constance sat and considered if, maybe, this was another stupid idea. The clock chimed. She glanced up at it. A scroll flipped down. It read, “late Christmas eve, go to bed.”
She muttered, “You are correct. I should but I won’t get an opportunity for another twelve months. So lets start.”
* * * *
Once in the work shop she began by grabbing her tool box and plugging in the compressor. Bright blue sparks flew about her. Steel screeched as she cut and shaped. She didn’t realise she was finished until she reached for the last nut and bolt and discovered there was no more.
“Now for the fun bit, testing and trying.” She hesitated. “Bother health and safety but I can’t ignore it.”
Getting ready for the test took more time than she bargained on. She dressed with care but she frightened Summer who raced towards the woods.
“Coward,” declared Constance as she pulled on the goggles and the thick safety gloves, before checking everything. “Right let’s check first, safety harness for climbing. Hard hat, in case I slip. Bright obnoxious yellow jacket to make me highly visible, in case I get stuck under the snow.” She lifted one booted foot and stopped, they were of course safety issue, heavy and cumbersome.
Saying a quick prayer to her guardian angel she went to drag her monster invention out of the workshop. It wouldn’t budge.
She stood looking at it wondering how to get it moving, then spotted a pair of roller blades, “perfect.”
Minutes later it sat outside in the snow, looking like a forlorn giant dog. Humming merrily she pressed the on switch. Clipping her rope to the central Christmas Pole in the middle of the square she took a look at the trampolines. They were lined up in strategic spots. They were used for hanging up lost and fallen lights or icicles. “Tonight I have another task for you,” she said.
Taking a leap she began to bounce along the trampolines hovering all of the snow from sight!
Constance was woken by a loud rumpus. It roared in her left ear. Sitting upright in her bed she discovered wasn’t easy as elves were climbing up onto her bed. From the muffled sounds beneath her she guessed a few were hidden underneath her bed.
“It’s been stolen, Christmas has been nicked.” Enda squeaked. His brothers took up the shout. “Not one snowflake left. Christmas is lost.”
“Not at all. It’s….” Constance smiled. “Isn’t this what you wished for?”
“No course not. It’s gone.” There were elves sobbing and moaning all around her.
She chewed on her bottom lip while considering the problem. “Let’s make the most of it, pretend we are in Hawaii.”
The elves moved into a huddle. There was frantic whispering. Enda appeared beside her. “Slim is googling it on his iphone.” He ducked back inside the large circle.
“Can we barbecue? Make flower garlands, wear grass skirts? Try limbo dancing?” Sam asked.
She grimaced and worked her way around the vision of a hundred elves who can’t cook attempting to barbecue while wearing grass skirts.
Constance nodded. “Of course we can, but we’d better make sure there is a giant bucket of water standing by just in case..”
The words, “Christmas gets burnt,” died on her lips as she quickly added, “in case you get thirsty.”
Constance watched them race from her room chattering about sun lamps and sun burn. She wondered how she was going to explain this to Mr. S. Claus. With a sigh she tumbled from her bed and went to search her cookery books for tips on barbecuing.
“I suppose if the worst comes to the worst, the reindeers will not get lost this year, they will be guided home by the flames and aroma of one hundred turkey’s burning.”
Breeze spotted something bouncing about close to Tulip’s house. He arrived at her door and went inside. “We- have- a -problem.” He said gasping for breath after his long run.
Tulip spun around and saw Breeze. She heard his words but noticed she was missing a cake. “You have a problem. You ate one of my Christmas cakes.” She was not looking happy.
He said, “I didn’t look.” He held out both hands to her and stuck out his tongue.
“Okay, sorry I believe you. But who took it?” When Breeze told her what he thought had happened Tulip was looking worried.
“But Matt could be anywhere by now.” She paced about her kitchen. “We need to act quickly. We don’t need a Matt on the moon for Christmas.”
“Cool.” Breeze said.
Tulip glared at him. “Who made the bubble?”
Breeze whispered, “Lovisma.”
Tulip walked out onto her porch and shouted for Lovisma. By the time Tulip returned to her kitchen Lovisma was sitting at her kitchen table eating a cake. Breeze quickly explained what had happened to Matt.
“I told him it was a silly idea but the boy insisted said he would tell everyone it was me who made the food at the last party go pop and bang everytime someone tried to eat.” She was smiling at Breeze whose tongue had been burnt by the sizzling food.
“I want you to bring him back now.” Tulip stamped her foot and the whole house shook.
Lovisma said, “No need to get angry or nasty. I will have him back in a jiffy.”
Breeze surprised them both when he said, “No, I think you shouldn’t bring him back so quickly. But this is what I would like you to do.” When he told them his plan both Tulip and Lovisma were shocked but they agreed it would teach Matt to behave in future.
Matt was wide awake. The sound of twinkling bells and whispers from the stars woke him. “Santa is near.” They whispered.
Matt twisted and turned about in the bubble but he couldn’t see one single reindeer.
The bubble was sinking slowly towards the ground. It landed in the clearing near Tulip’s house. Matt could see a large group. The children were jumping up and down and racing about. The adults were enjoying Tulip’s Christmas cakes and talking to …Santa.
“I’m over here,” he shouted as he watched Lily being lifted up into the sleigh to sit beside Santa. Matt was frantic he wanted to pet the reindeer. He wondered why no one could hear him or see him. It began to snow as he watched. He sat and cried. “I messed up, stupid me. I shouldn’t have gone looking for him. I should have known he would come to us. He always does.” As soon as Matt spoke the bubble burst . The snow felt cool on his skin. He ran towards the sleigh. Breeze blocked his path. Matt looked up at Breeze and said, “I’m sorry.”
Breeze said, “Don’t say it to me, you need to apologize to Tulip, Lily, your mum, Lovisma and Santa.”
Matt said, “Yes. I will. Can I…please see him and pet Rudolph.”
Breeze was a kind ogre and he couldn’t be angry with anyone. He hoisted Matt onto his shoulder and said, “Make way for the adventurer who got a little lost on his way here.”
So it was that Matt got to talk to Santa and more importantly got to spend time with the Reindeer. As he was saying goodbye to Santa Matt was startled when Santa placed a parcel in his hand. “Specially for you Matt. Remember to be good.”
When the reindeer were mere dots in the sky Matt tore the paper off his present and discovered he was holding a ball of glass. “It’s a bubble,” he mumbled.
“Shake it,” his mum said.
When Matt shook it he saw a tiny bubble rise from the ground, snow was dancing within the glass and against a dark sky a tiny sleigh raced across the sky. He smiled and said, “Cool I won’t forget. He always comes to visit.”