Sunday, December 15, 2019

A Christmas Tuffet: The Holiday Story of Little Miss Muffet

If you need a Christmas tuffet, 
A seat to sit on, don’t you rough it! 
Remember the woman Little Miss Muffet, 
And ask for one as a stocking stuff-it.
Santa has presents in his budget.
Down the chimney, they will plummet.
Ask for a sleigh or a trumpet, 
Even if you think he will be reluctant.
In the end, you will be triumphant.
Just leave Santa a cookie or a crumpet.
By the time you blink, there’ll be a ruckus,
Like at a secret winter snowflake summit.
Take your gift, and don’t you covet
Someone else’s Christmas bucket.
Your greatest wish was a Christmas tuffet, 
And your dream might have been the toughest.
So sit on your stool like an elf or a puppet,
And be thankful you don’t live in a mud hut!

Copyright 2020 Jennifer Waters

Mrs. Santa Claus Cookies: The Story of a Snickerdoodle Woman

If you need a cookie on Christmas Eve, 
Mrs. Santa Claus has a few up her sleeve.
She has chocolate chip and almond biscuit, 
So much tastier than a greasy beef brisket. 
Macaroons with coconut and brownies with butter.
Fortune cookies make your heart flutter.
Oatmeal raisin and iced gingerbread men
Make you smile again and again.
Her favorite cookie in case you didn’t know
Is a snickerdoodle with cinnamon dough.
Baking soda, flour, and cream of tartar
With eggs and sugar for a quarter.
The spice smells like the holiday season.
Cookies are red and green for a reason.
You can add kisses or nuts for variation.
Hot chocolate with cream helps hydration. 
When leaving your cookie for Mr. Claus,
Take a moment and make a pause.
Learn from his wife about confection.
She’s an expert at cookie convection.
Then write him a note with your autograph
And have a hearty Christmastime laugh!

Copyright 2020 Jennifer Waters

Sunday, November 24, 2019

Sled Dog: The Story of an Alaskan Husky

Just in case a snowstorm has come to town, 
You might need a sled dog to get around.
So if you find him at your front door, 
Hop on board and get ready to explore.
Your guide has paws and a doggy tail,
And he’ll take you on a winding trail.
Ups and downs and to-and-fro,
Through a world of endless snow. 
Most sleighs have horses with Christmas bells,
But huskies have many similar parallels.
He might bring with him a couple friends
To help him pull you through the bends.
Almost like riding in a toboggan,
Just try to protect your noggin.
Hold on tight; breathe the Alaskan air.
Watch out for a roaming grizzly bear.
It’s better than taking a rollercoaster.
At home, warm up your oven toaster.
Your sled dog is your new companion. 
A wonder the size of the great Grand Canyon.

Copyright 2020 Jennifer Waters

The Sugar Plum Fairy: The Story of the Kingdom of Sweets

Every ballerina wants to be the Sugar Plum Fairy.
She takes the center stage like a sweet cherry. 
Dancing on her toes like a poem pretty,
Her steps are strong; her character is witty.
Like the good fairy in The Wizard of Oz,
Excited for Christmas with charm and applause.
Learn from her sparkle and her kindness,
Her costume is stunning unless you’ve got blindness.
She commands your soul to dance and spin
Until the Nutcracker comes steppin’ in.
She’s the candy hostess with the mostess,
And every holiday child ought to know this.

Copyright 2020 Jennifer Waters

Friday, November 1, 2019

Christmas and December: The Story of Two Wintertime Sheep

Once there was a pair of wintertime sheep,
Christmas and December over fences would leap.
Everyone loved Christmas and paid him attention. 
December was cute, too, but hardly got a mention.
Since Christmas had his own day, December 25th
It made some competition, and the sheep had a riff.  
Christmas would have been nothing without December, 
And he liked his brother much more than November. 
December was actually born before Christmas, 
A side note but an important point of business. 
On the 24th, December came into the world.
But Christmas came to life on the 25th and whirled. 
So Christmas decided that December must be known, 
And his reputation must increase, as he is not alone. 
Christmas can’t keep the 25th all to himself, 
All month long, he shares the Christmas wealth!
Now December and Christmas are equally important, 
And Christmas Day really can’t be shortened! 

Copyright 2020 Jennifer Waters

Minuet: The Story of a Velvet Briar Rose Ballroom Dance

“Another day has been spun,” sighed Emma Souster, finishing her spinning of cotton for the day. 

Night and day, Emma spun thread on a spinning wheel in her home, causing calluses on her hands. Her thread made cotton frocks for the women of Bourton-on-the-Water in the Cotswolds in England. Because she was always too busy spinning for someone else, her daughter, Velvet Briar Rose Souster, wore clothes made from the scraps. Most of the time, Velvet even sewed them together herself. 

“I wish I had a pretty dress for the winter Cotswolds Ballroom Dance,” she sighed. “Mother never has time to make one for me. Every year, I wear the same old tattered dress that I try to make new again.”

When Velvet was two years old, her father died of pneumonia in the winter frost. Heartbroken as could be, her mother never remarried, leaving Velvet, now 15, and her mother to fend for themselves alone. 

However, her aunt lived in London, and her uncle was a wealthy banker, so Velvet often spent time on the train visiting her aunt and uncle, hardly making ends meet for herself and her mother. 

“Auntie, I need a dress for the Cotswolds Ballroom Dance,” Velvet cried one afternoon in tears. “None of the boys ever ask me to dance. Mother doesn’t have the money. I can’t bear to go to the ball in rags.”

“A dress? Why, that’s quite simple,” her aunt explained. “The fanciest dress that I ever wore was the one made by magic silkworms. When I was young, we were very poor, and they spun my wedding dress.”

“Magic silkworms?” Velvet questioned. “But where do I find them? I’ve never heard of such creatures.”

“Oh, darling, the silkworms find you,” her auntie insisted, begrudgingly pulling a glass jar out of her desk drawer. 

“But how will they find me?” Velvet inquired. “If they don’t know that I need a dress, they can’t find me.”

“Well, now they’ve found you,” her aunt frowned, handing Velvet the jar. “The trick is that the silkworms only make one dress for you in a lifetime, so make sure it is the dress that you really want. A fairy godmother gave them to your grandmother in her youth, and she gave them to me. I protected them all this time without anyone knowing of their powers. They also spun a wedding dress for your mother.”

“So, this is why she tries to keep spinning at her wheel,” Velvet whispered. “It reminds her of the silkworms.” Staring in awe at the worms in the jar, Velvet determined she would have a glorious dress.

“I hope I meet my husband at the ball,” she quipped. “Then, mother wouldn’t have to work so much.”

“Promise me this, that you won’t show your mother the silkworms,” her aunt warned, embittered. “You bring the silkworms back to me on your next trip to London. Your uncle wants them for safe keeping.” 

“Yes, auntie,” Velvet promised. “Mother doesn’t need to know a thing about the worms.”

After a good night’s rest in London, Velvet’s aunt bundled her in a new winter jacket, bought her a morning train ticket, and sent her back to Bourton-on-the-Water with the magic worms in her knapsack.

“Good riddance!” her aunt murmured. “When I get the silkworms back, I’m never talking to her again.” 

“I have the best aunt,” Velvet imagined in innocence on her journey back to the Cotswolds. 

The entire train ride she pictured the magical dress that she would wear to the dance. 

“Mother, I’m home,” Velvet called, running into her cottage. “I had a great time with Auntie and Uncle.”

“Fix yourself a cup of tea,” Emma told her daughter. “I’m still working for the day. Lots to do!”

With only two weeks until the winter formal dance, Velvet studied the worms in the jar with anxiety. Then, she slipped them in the hole in the floorboards of her bedroom, so her mother wouldn’t find them. 

“Now, how does this work?” she asked them the next morning. “If I let you out of the jar, do you make me a dress?” The silence from the worms was deafening, and she wondered if her aunt was telling fibs. 

As the night before the dance approached, she cried herself to sleep, thinking she shouldn’t attend the formal.

“Who needs a stupid dance!” Velvet cried. “I’m stuck here with mother and her endless spinning.”

The morning of the dance, she woke up looking for answers from the magic silkworms one last time. When she moved the floorboard from its position, she peered into an empty jar. The worms were gone. 

“The worms are missing!” Velvet gasped. “Mother must have taken the worms. What will I do now?”

As Velvet walked into the cottage kitchen, she found her mother sitting at the spinning wheel, glowing. 

“The magic silkworms visited us last night!” her mother exuded with joy. “They made each of us a glorious dress. My sister told me that the silkworms only made one dress for a woman in a lifetime. She lied.”

Velvet couldn’t bear to tell her mother the truth. The silkworms clearly brought her aunt and uncle their extravagant wealth, allowing her uncle’s banking to be established with ease while her mother suffered. 

“Maybe Auntie slipped them into my knapsack without me knowing,” Velvet fibbed, looking at the winter-white silk gowns made for both her and her mother. The gowns had elegant touches of red, blue, and green. 

That evening at the Cotswolds Ballroom Dance, a kind gentleman asked Velvet to dance a minuet. Although she somewhat fumbled through the dance, she took her steps to the rhythm of the music. 

“Could I come calling next Sunday afternoon?” the young man asked her, holding her hand.

“I would like that very much,” Velvet agreed, beaming in her silk gown and pinned curls. 

Meanwhile, Emma circled around the punch bowl, until a proper gentleman in a suit asked her to dance. 

“Would you do me the honor?” the gentleman proposed, ushering her to the dance floor in a moment’s notice. Emma blushed and nodded, whisking herself off into a minuet, which she hadn’t danced in years. 

The next few weeks were the most exciting of Velvet’s life with a new full wardrobe spun from silk for her and her mother. As he promised, Velvet’s suitor had been courting her, and she looked radiant. 

In the meantime, Velvet’s mother received word that her sister’s husband had gone to jail for fraudulent business dealings.

“What’s this notice in the post?” Emma wondered, studying the letter with the disheartening news.

“Whatever became of my magic silkworms?” Velvet’s disheveled aunt demanded, busting into the cottage one afternoon unannounced when Emma was out doing errands at the market. 

“The silkworms?” Velvet snapped sharply. “Oh, those silly things. I remember now, you told me that they would make me a dress. You’re clearly crazy. Mother made all these new dresses by herself.”

Before Velvet’s aunt could grab her by the hand and threaten her, her mother came back from town. 

“So nice to see you, sister,” Emma announced, walking through the door with her suitor on her arm. With the handsome man by Emma’s side, the evil auntie ran from the cottage without a response.

In time, Emma never had calluses on her hands again, or her heart, and Velvet got her wish for both of them—love found its way into their lives. To this day, the magic silkworms will spin a dress for anyone looking for love.


Copyright 2020 Jennifer Waters

Thursday, October 3, 2019

A Tiger Named Lily: The Story of a Cat and Its Flower

Once there was a tiger named Lily, 
Cats of the jungle thought the name was silly, 
But Lily was delicate like a wild flower, 
And from her beauty came her power.  
She liked to dance and sing and smile
And stop to smell the Lilies awhile.
Her stripes were dainty like an artist. 
Her orange fur was soft and felt the smartest.
She only roared when she was scared, 
And she tried to always be prepared
For the woes of the jungle to come her way.
She gave flowers to enemies any old day.
So if you meet her on your travels,
Take her flower as time unravels. 
It will keep you strong and kind.
A tiger named Lily is quite a find.

Copyright 2020 Jennifer Waters

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

The Unicorn Cure: The Story of a Horse with a Horn

Once there was a girl named Sunshine in the land of Gras whose best friend was a unicorn named Penrose. Because her father was King of Gras and her mother was the queen, she lived in a Scottish medieval castle.

Penrose went with her everywhere she went, protecting her from harmful beasts in the enchanted forest. She loved to play with him in her rose garden and splash with him in the hot, bubbling mineral springs. 

“I love your horn,” 12-year-old Sunshine announced, touching the ivory knife-like spear on his slender forehead. Only the rhinoceros was known to have a similar horn on its head, and this unicorn’s alicorn had a red tip. 

More than once, his horn had pierced the heart of beasts of the forest in Sunshine’s defense. Although she was a princess, she had many jealous enemies, trying to prevent her destiny to rule Gras as queen.  

Sometimes, she would spend the night with Penrose in his unicorn lair next to her family castle. She brushed his silky white coat with her own golden hairbrush and braided his long flowing tail. 

“No one dares come anywhere near me when you’re by my side,” she voiced, stroking his satin fur. 

On days when Sunshine was sick, Penrose helped her get well quickly. His horn had magical healing qualities, and he would grind it against a rock and mix its powder in tea as a potion to cure her ailments. 

Days later, his horn would grow back to its regular shape, as if he had never used it as medicine. When Sunshine would swim in a river or lake, he would dip his horn in it first, cleansing it for her. 

He was always making sure that she would never be poisoned by the evils of the forest. In fact, the cup itself from which Sunshine would drink was made from Penrose’s unicorn horn. On the base of the cup was inscribed: “But my horn shalt thou exalt like the horn of an unicorn: I shall be anointed with fresh oil.” So, whatever Sunshine drank was purified by Penrose’s purifying healing powers and virtues.

“Let’s take a nap together by the river,” Sunshine wisped, one afternoon in the beautiful forest.  

The unicorn curled up next to her in the tall grass, neighing, and fell asleep with its head on her lap. That particular afternoon, beasts had been watching the pair from a distance, waiting to pounce. As Sunshine and Penrose rested, the beasts circled, and when Penrose was fully asleep, the creatures descended. 

“Stop!” Sunshine screamed as loud as she could, as if waking from a nightmare. Penrose rose to his feet.

Although it was devastating, Penrose threw himself in front of the beasts, giving Sunshine a chance to flee. As she ran into the distance, she saw the beasts slaughter her most majestic best friend. 

She cried all night until she could no longer produce tears, and she felt sick to her stomach. She sobbed: “Why did Penrose have to die? I will never be able to go on. I miss him so much that I can hardly breathe.”

“Why do you weep as though I am dead?” a sudden voice boomed in her bedroom, shaking the walls.

There stood Penrose in all his glory and stately heroism. “I am now more real than ever before,” he declared. She ran across the room and threw her arms around his neck, kissing his cheeks as she wept. 

“I thought you had died,” she cried. “You’re my beloved companion. Never leave me again!”

Almost like an angelic being, Penrose accompanied Sunshine until the day she died, but only she saw him. Although unicorns from other lands would visit Sunshine in Penrose’s honor, even they could not see him. 

Others could feel his presence and had been warned of his intervention in her life, time and again. Since Penrose was invisible, his ability to care for her tripled, compared to when he was seen by all. 

“She has magical protection from Penrose,” the people of Gras whispered among themselves. 

She was feared more than all women because of the unicorn’s legendary acts of bravery to defend her. One time, Penrose’s mystical shadow cast a dragon into the sea of forgetfulness to protect her. She even wore a beautiful, braided unicorn necklace around her neck carved from his ivory alicorn. If predators advanced against her, it would send a beam of blinding light into their eyes. 

“Ah!” her enemies yelled. “What is that bright light in my eyes? I can’t see anything!”

Of course, she could never forget Penrose because he was always with her, even if no one else could see him.  

“I have as it were the strength of a unicorn,” Sunshine sang, rising from bed each morning in her castle. 

As queen of Gras, she sat on an ivory throne made of Penrose’s magical alicorn, reigning until age one hundred twenty. As time went by, the beasts of the forest never again attacked anyone of noble heart, for they had been eradicated from Earth with Penrose’s vengeance. In death, he accomplished more than he ever could in life, raising Sunshine like the golden queen that she was for her parents and her people. 

Copyright 2020 Jennifer Waters

(Inspired by THE UNICORN TAPESTRIES, also known as THE HUNT OF THE UNICORN, a set of seven tapestries housed today at the Cloisters, in Fort Tryon Park, northern Manhattan, New York, which is a branch of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Numbers 23:22 KJV. Psalm 92:10 KJV.) 


Sunday, August 4, 2019

Melissa Missy: The Story of a Bee Princess Who Loved Honey

Once there was a girl named Melissa Missy, 
And everyone knew the girl was not a sissy. 
She had a crown of bees that circled her head.
Even when she slept, they flew over her in bed. 
She sat on her throne when she woke up, 
She drank sweet honey from her golden cup. 
Bees followed her wherever she went.
Stinging is something she tried to prevent. 
Honey is like candy, not nasty and mean. 
Buzzing is like singing, and she is a queen.
She sings on her throne with her crown of bees.
She always remembers to say thank you and please.
Her honeycomb is tasty, and it brushes her hair. 
The liquid sugar keeps her skin shiny and fair.
Her hive is her family and gives her much joy. 
She knows she is special and tries to be coy.
The busy bee has no time for tears and sorrow. 
She believes in love and has hope for tomorrow.

Copyright 2020 Jennifer Waters

Sunday, July 7, 2019

It's Raining Cats and Dogs: The Story of Felines and Canines Falling from the Sky

It’s raining; it’s roaring.
The old sky is pouring
Cats and dogs at such a rate
That I have to set the record straight.
The sky has opened with its pets.
Everyone open up your nets!
Catch a feline if you can;
Catch a canine with a plan: 
Cocker spaniels with their curls,
Collies loved by boys and girls,
Basset hounds with dangly ears,
Beagles who raise their tails for cheers.
A Shetland Sheepdog and a Pomeranian
Are not at all subterranean.
A Golden Retriever is man’s best friend,
A Labrador Retriever is a different blend.
Poodles melt your heart to pieces.
German Shepherds know what peace is.
Dachshunds are a short-statured pup.
Boxers are always looking up!
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
Is the kind of dog that avoids a scandal.
The Bichon Frise is small but vocal
And friendly to everyone who’s local.
The Maltese is almost like a cat, 
And cats aren’t dogs and that is that.
Maine Coon cats are a friendly fluff.
British Shortshair are adorable enough. 
Persians have the sweetest beard.
Ragdolls are sometimes sheared. 
Bengals have stripes and rosettes.
Munchkins are the happiest of pets.
Siamese are black and white.
Abyssinian would never ever bite.
Scottish Fold are cute as pie. 
Birman have a striking blue eye.
Russian Blue have silver coats. 
These cats are cuddly anecdotes. 
The sky has opened up to spit.  
Every cat has a dog for it!
Dogs and cats like wind and rain
Tend to line your windowpane. 
Full of fur and friends galore!
Open up the sky and pour!

Copyright 2019 Jennifer Waters


An angel troubles the waters for a brother and sister on Christmas Eve. 

When a magical old bridge breaks on Christmas Eve during a lantern festival on the Rhine River, 10-year-old Jule Schmidt, and her 7-year-old blind brother Killian, descend into freezing water. Since Killian cannot swim, he almost dies except for the divine intervention of the Angel that Troubled the Waters. As the children arrive on the bank of the river with the help of their father, Killian reveals a Christmas miracle took place—he can see for the first time.

Holding hands, 10-year-old Jule Schmidt and her 7-year-old brother named Killian admire glowing Christmas lanterns on the Rhine River. Since birth, he has been blind, and she always tries to see for him, pointing out all the wonderful sights in the world. On this special night, Jule and Killian decide to sit by the bridge, wandering from their parents to a rickety old bridge at a narrow part of the river. Jule likes to make prayers to the angels and has insisted that she has met a large angel by the bridge on the river. She tells Killian that she once met an angel who told her that he would be healed of blindness. She wants to know if Killian has ever seen her—an angel with wings, long golden hair, and a pink dress with a blue flowing jacket.

As Killian sits down on the corner of the bridge, Jule sits beside him, hoping that the angel would appear for Christmas. The brother and sister are so caught up in the excitement that they don’t notice the loose boards on the bridge. When Jule spoke to the angel, she said the angel told her that at certain seasons she descends into the river and stirs up the water, whoever then first, after she stirs up the water, steps into the river is made well from whatever disease is in their body. Killian says he thinks that he shouldn’t get into the river because he cannot swim, and he might drown. With that, a mighty wind blows the lanterns across the river in a squall, and the side of the bridge where Killian and Jule are sitting breaks, and the brother and sister fall into the river. Although Jule kicks as hard as she can, it’s not enough to keep her and her brother afloat in the river. 

While the air begins to run out in each of the children’s lungs, weeping is not an option, and fear fills their bodies. As Jule looks at her brother with remorse, knowing he can’t see her, a bright light shines on them from above the river. Then a loud voice booms throughout the rippling water: “Then the eyes of the blind will be opened.” Suddenly, scales fall from Killian’s eyes into the bottom of the sea, and the angel with long golden hair, and a pink dress with a blue flowing jacket stands before them with their father at her side. She is twice as big as their father. Mr. Schmidt, whose first name is Christoph, grabs both children by the arms, and swims to the surface. Oddly enough, both children feel a second pair of large hands on their forearms from the angel in the pink dress. The crowd of people on the riverbank throw a scarf into the river, which Christoph grabs. The father and his two children are pulled to shore as the angel did more than her share of towing the family to the bank. Killian covers his eyes from the shining lights from the Christmas lanterns, burying his head in his father’s shoulder. Killian reveals that he can see because of the Angel that Troubled the Waters on Christmas Eve.

Copyright 2022 Jennifer Waters

TOY TRAINS synopsis

All aboard the Christmas Railroad!

When 11-year-old Joyce accidentally runs the locomotive from her father’s toy train off the tracks, she tearfully asks for an angel to help her rebuild the family’s prize possession. Then the angel Gabriel and Joyce spend Christmas Eve secretly renovating the Christmas Railroad. On Christmas morning, Joyce rejoices that her parents love the gift of the newly decorated railroad where everyone is welcome. 

Even at age eleven, Joyce Trewyn hasn’t grown tired of watching her father set up the toy train for Christmas. Not only has he handpicked the locomotives, coal cars, train cars, boxcars, caboose, and trolleys, but he also set up the track on the railroad and hand-painted every snowy building and mountain. Joyce runs down the stairs in her red and green striped Christmas train pajamas. She wears her own conductor’s hat and hands her father a plastic bag of people who would soon get the ride of their lives. Mrs. Trewyn serves up hot chocolate with marshmallows and whipped cream. As Joyce helps her father set up the train set, piecing together the curving train track, her mother watches It’s A Wonderful Life on television in black and white. 

After Clarence the angel has finished saving George Bailey in the film It’s A Wonderful Life, Mrs. Trewyn turns off the television and heads to bed with her husband. Joyce decides to stay up a little longer and play with the train. Only minutes after both her parents are asleep, Joyce runs the locomotive off the train tracks, hitting the covered bridge, which topples the water tower and collapses the entire train set, closing Grand Central Terminal. The locomotive smokes, blinking its headlight, and the caboose loses a wheel. She runs into the storage closet, crying. Looking at the supplies, Joyce decides she needs an angel, like in the TV movie. Joyce prays for angels to hear her and come help her fix the Christmas Railroad. All of a sudden, a cold breeze blows the family room window open, blowing the curtains to the ceiling. Joyce runs to shut the window, only to be greeted by Gabriel, an elderly-looking man, trying to climb through the window. He explains he is a Christmas angel that works extra hours on Christmas Eve. For the next five hours, despite a few setbacks, Joyce and Gabriel paint, glue, and hammer, emptying every toy train box from Gabe’s bag. Then Gabriel crawls back through the window, telling Joyce that God’s angels are always nearby, even if you can’t see them. A flash of light blinds Joyce for a moment, and she can no longer see Gabriel. 

When Mr. Trewyn wakes up, he catches Joyce with her head sticking out the window. Joyce closes the window and nervously turns around to find her mother and father in their Christmas pajamas and robes. Her father is thrilled that she spent all night renovating the Christmas Railroad as a gift. Joyce says the angel Gabriel helped her. Both Joyce’s parents give her a funny look, thinking she must have had an extra-large imagination on Christmas morning. Joyce and her father rejoice all Christmas day that the Christmas Railroad is open for business, working better than ever. Everyone on the train arrives to his or her destination right on time.

Copyright 2022 Jennifer Waters


When true love fails, try holiday shopping with a pair of boxing gloves.

Because Frances Mountbatten’s boyfriend Spencer doesn’t propose on Christmas day, she slugs him for it with his Christmas gift, a new pair of boxing gloves straight out of the box. When Spencer doesn’t show up at Christmas World at Harrod’s the next morning to buy her an engagement ring on the British holiday of Boxing Day, Frances is wearing the gloves, ready to slug Spencer for the second time. Instead, she finds a gentleman who is willing to fight for her, and she never has to fight Spencer again. 

On Christmas morning, Frances Mountbatten wakes up to a glowing Christmas tree and waits for a knock on her door. Spencer Arthur, her longtime love, finally stands at the door with a pile of packages. She hopes that he finally asks her to marry him. On the side table sits a stack of Frances’ romance novels. Of course, she is one of Britain’s most famous authors. When he doesn’t propose, she stiffly hands Spencer a large, heavy box. He rips open the gold wrapping paper, pulls off the lid, only to find a pair of red boxing gloves. Frances grabs the gloves and shoves them on her tiny hands. Then, she punches Spencer on the cheek, knocking him over in one full swing—he topples onto the wooden floor. 

Moments later, when Spencer regains consciousness, he holds his head, sporting a right black eye. Frances tells him that tomorrow, on Boxing Day, Harrods is having a sale. It starts at 10 o’clock sharp. He is buying her an engagement ring by noon, or she’s knocking him out for good. He says he was planning on doing just that. She will not take off the boxing gloves until he puts a ring on her left hand and tells him to serve himself breakfast. When she arrives in Christmas World the next morning, she takes a seat next to Santa Claus’ house, waiting for Spencer. As noon arrives, Spencer has still not arrived, and she starts to cry, causing the Harrods shoppers to stop with tissues. 

Then, a handsome gentleman with a handkerchief tells her not to cry because it’s Boxing Day, and everything is on sale. Aware of the holiday, she shows the man her gloves. The man, who introduces himself as Harry Williams, asks if he can take her to lunch up on the second floor at The Tea Room. In fact, the gentleman, who works in publishing, has read her novels. Harry helps Frances take off the boxing gloves and leaves them in Christmas World for Santa. Months later, when Spencer appears in shame at Frances’ flat to propose, Harry quickly gets his own pair of boxing gloves and sends him away once and for all. By summertime, Harry proposes on one knee, and Frances marries Harry on Christmas Eve in St. Paul’s Cathedral. Spencer only hears about the wedding, and by this point has several black eyes from other women that he never married. Happier than ever, Frances never puts on boxing gloves again, she only makes sure to catch the good sales with Harry on Boxing Day—the most brilliant shopping holiday.

Copyright 2022 Jennifer Waters


A little Dutch girl from Holland and seven musical elves from the North Pole defeat a wicked witch with the help of Sinterklaas at Christmas. 

Reminiscent of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, The Mistletoes are Joyful, Cheerful, Merry, Peaceful, Carol, Nightfall, and Claus, who come bearing gifts for Sinterklaas in Holland. The magical Mistletoes live with the aunt of a twelve-year-old Dutch girl named Daniëlle Kappel, whose witch of a stepmother tries to kill her and her father until Sinterklaas and his elves help the heroine save herself and find true love. 

A twelve-year-old Dutch girl named Daniëlle Kappel lives in a castle on the Holland coast with the windmills. She places her wooden shoes next to the fireplace for Sinterklaas, kissing her father on the cheek. She also sits her large Christmas bouquet of mistletoe from her friend Niels on the fireplace mantle. Flipping open her father’s pocket watch and looking at the late hour, she hopes to receive many gifts for Christmas. After all, her father is a very rich merchant who sends ships all over the world and trades rare goods in foreign lands. When she was young, she and her mother would spend hours in the fields by the ocean, frolicking by the windmills. Her mother’s sister lives in a cottage on the coast with seven musical elves from the blistering cold North Pole. Very few people know that the elves, also called the Mistletoes, live with her aunt, who hides them in her attic. Sinterklaas asks them to live in Holland instead of the North Pole, so they can deliver gifts for him at Christmas. Of course, the Mistletoes pretend to be humans, but they have magical powers in song that they use for good deeds. Their names are Joyful, Cheerful, Merry, Peaceful, Carol, Nightfall, and Claus. 

This Christmas, the Mistletoes explain to Daniëlle that they found her aunt dead. Apparently, her aunt could never find the words to tell Daniëlle, but her stepmother is a witch and killed not only her mother, but now her aunt. At once, the Christmas Dutch Girl and the seven musical elves set out to save Daniëlle’s father from the witchy stepmother. Daniëlle must get to her father before the hands on his pocket watch stop, or the witch will have killed him. 

When Daniëlle and the elves reach her father’s home, Daniëlle bursts through the castle with the Mistletoes who sing in full voice. The witch—who grew as big as the ceiling—holds a large knife at Daniëlle’s father’s throat, as the Mistletoes sing in harmony, shrinking the witch back to normal size. Before the witch can regain her large stature, Sinterklaas lands in the front yard with Rudolph and his sleigh of reindeer. Daniëlle wrestles with the witch until she drops the knife on the kitchen floor. Her father stabs the witch in the heart until she dies. As the years go by, Sinterklaas brings both Daniëlle and Meneer Kappel true love. Dead as a doornail, the wicked witch never bothers anyone in Holland again, and Christmas lives on in peace.

Copyright 2022 Jennifer Waters

Wednesday, June 26, 2019


The circus coming to town costs one mother more than she bargains for. 

When the circus comes to town, 8-year-old “Tiny” Tina wants an elephant for a pet, so she befriends Charley, the Magnificent Elephant, and takes him home with the rest of the circus. After arriving home with the circus animals, Tina’s mother thinks she should sell tickets for the fiasco in her backyard to pay for the very large grocery bill. Her mother wishes she could send the animals back to the circus. 

Third grader “Tiny” Tina wants to join the circus, or at least watches a few shows. After all, her mother tells her the circus is coming to town to perform in a big tent. Of all the animals, the elephants are supposed to be the largest and the most fun. Since everyone laughs at Tina for being three inches shorter than she should be at 8 years old, Tina decides if she has an elephant for a pet, then everyone would be nice to her. So, her plan is to befriend the largest elephant in the circus as her new pet. As Tina approaches the elephant circus train car, she sees a purple tail sticking out the door. She climbs up the steps on the train car and tugs at the tail until the elephant wakes up. She asks the elephant to come with her because she could use a new pillow at night. She wants to walk through the fields in the day, and he can lift her to pick apples from the trees. The elephant wants to know if she has a big backyard. In fact, she has a whole acre where they can play. The elephant decides that he’s tired of riding bicycles for cheering crowds, and he doesn’t like standing on his head. He especially doesn’t like balancing balls or jumping through rings of fire. He thinks the girl is much nicer than the nasty Circus Trainer who cracks his whip at him. The elephant roars and stamps his feet on the train car, shaking the entire train on the tracks.

Tina pulls the elephant’s tail again. She names him Charley, the Magnificent Elephant, and declares that they will be best friends. Charley swings open the train door with his snout and lifts Tina on his back. He stomps out of the train car onto the ground, waking up all the other animals. The purple elephant looks left and then right, and the Circus Trainer is nowhere to be seen. Suddenly, Charley decides the rest of the circus animals are coming with them. He just can’t possibly leave them there alone. One by one, Charley shakes loose the rest of the animals on the train, and Tina holds on tight. By the end of the night, the circus animals are behind Charley in a straight line. The circus marches two-by-two down the street: unicorns, horses, lions, giraffes, and tigers. Then come the camels, kangaroos, monkeys, seals, ostriches, leopards, llamas, and grizzly bears. When the circus reaches Tina’s house, all the animals except Charley creep quietly into the backyard. Instead, Charley slips through the window of Tina’s bedroom and lands right on her bed. 

Then Tina crawls through the window and climbs on Charley’s back—he is softer than a pillow. Two seconds later, the entire bed crumbles onto the floor, causing a crack in the wall. Tina’s mother runs into the bedroom crying. Tina tells her that she set the elephant free from the circus. Her mother peers out the bedroom window to find the animals munching on her vegetable garden. Since the animals need a home with a nice family, Tina asks if they can keep them. Tina’s mother wishes she would have never told her that the circus was coming to town. Since the grocery bill is going to be so large, she imagines that her daughter should sell tickets and get their money back for the expenses. Once a circus, always a circus.

Copyright 2022 Jennifer Waters


Monsters hide in the most unlikely places. 

When a sister and brother play in the sandbox, the dirt sucks her brother into its pit and out comes a Sandbox Giant. Despite the mother’s denial that nothing is wrong, the girl battles the Giant, trying to free her brother from the tormenter. Eventually, the water from the garden hose brings her brother back to life, and the Giant melts away after a fierce struggle. 

There is a sister and brother who like to play in the sandbox in their backyard. Their father has built the sandbox, and it is much better than digging in the dirt. They use their scoops, shovels, and pails to build castles and sculptures galore. Until one dark night, a thunderstorm comes that is unlike other thunderstorms. It shakes the house, and the lights go out; there is no electricity for hours, only candles. The mother tells the children: “We should go to sleep early tonight. The sun will come out tomorrow.” The sister tries to fall asleep, crawling into bed, counting backwards from one hundred. Her brother is already fast asleep on the couch, as if he had never even heard the storm.

Sure enough, the next morning, the sun is shining strong and bright, not a cloud in the sky. The two children head to the sandbox with their shovels and pails. Then the girl noticed sandy footprints in the grass. The boy thinks it was just the storm from last night, and he fills up his pail with moist sand. As the girl puts her feet in the sand, a fierce wind blows through the tree behind her. The sky becomes black and a loud clap of thunder fills the heavens. Then the sandbox begins to swirl and whirl, pulling the boy into its grip until he disappears. Out of the sandbox comes a very large monster made of sand that roars and growls. His face looks just like her brother, but it wasn’t him at all. The creature looms high above the sandbox, almost as strong as brick-and-mortar. The girl yells at the monster, asking what happened to her baby brother. The Sandbox Giant reaches for the girl, but she escapes his grasp.

Although the girl yells for her mother to come quickly, her mom is inside cleaning the house and doesn’t hear her cries. The girl continues to yell at the monster, asking it what it wants with her brother. She throws her shovel at the monster. The monster growls back at the girl, saying it wants her brother to stop playing in the sandbox where he lives. Then the girl explains that the monster doesn’t live in the sandbox because her father built it. She tells the monster to go back to where it came from. From the corner of her eye, the girl notices the garden hose in the bushes. She dives to grab the hose, hoping she can melt the Sandbox Giant with water. As she grasps the hose, the monster lunges for her and almost catches her waist. Before he can strangle her, she sprays the water in his face. The Sandbox Giant tries to cover himself from the stream of water. As the monster screams, it slowly shrinks in size. The girl yells that she wants her brother back. Then, finally, her mother calls from the kitchen window. The daughter yells at her mother that her brother is missing, still spraying the monster with water. The mother says that the brother is just hiding. When the girl turns back around, her brother is sitting in the sandbox building a castle. He looks just like himself, and the awful monster is gone.

Copyright 2022 Jennifer Waters