Jessie nuzzled Santa’s hand and leaned against his leg. She was listening to Santa and Molly bicker and she did not like their bantering at all.
“Santa, I don’t care if you don’t believe in New Year’s resolutions but I do. I’ve already made my list and given you a copy. I expect that you will do the same.” Molly slapped her apron on the table. Her bottom lip trembled as she spoke and she glared at her husband.
“It’s rubbish Molly. If you want me to make a plan for some changes that’s one thing but I don’t believe in doing it on New Year’s day. I promise I’ll cut down on the sweets, I’ll train Jessie more and I’ll keep you more informed about the business but I will not make a formal list.” Santa calmly took a drink of his cider and looked at his furious wife.
“Promises are one thing Christopher Cringle but I want a commitment and New Year’s day is as good a day as any to write down our intentions for the year. Either you’ll write down your resolutions or you can get your own dinner.” Molly grabbed her coat and stomped out of the house slamming the door behind her.
Jessie whined and looked up at Santa. She was upset. She had never seen Santa and Molly fight and she really didn’t understand why they were fighting now.
“It’s okay girl. Molly will calm down. She’s just upset because I forgot to tell her that one of the warehouses was moved at the last minute last year. She had the Elves work overtime to fill up bins of candy and it wasn’t needed. It went to waste and the Elves missed spending time with their families over the season. I admit it was my fault but I don’t know how making New Year’s resolutions will solve the problem.” Santa sighed and petted the dog’s head. “I guess I should make some resolutions and try to keep them. After all, we all can improve. Do you want to help me girl?’
Jessie barked and turned around in a circle. She trotted into Santa’s study and picked up a bundle of paper in her mouth. She delicately carried it to the table and sat down waiting for Santa to grab it.
“Thank-you, Jessie. I guess I should start with the obvious. “He began to write down resolutions. Within a few minutes he had a small list in front of him.
- Be on time for dinner 90% of the time
- Contact Molly if I will be late for dinner
- Cut down on the sweets and eggnog.
- Train Jessie
- Update Molly once a day on changes in the business.
- Take a vacation with Molly and Jessie
- Spend more time carving.
- Take Molly on a special anniversary dinner.
- Learn to photograph things well.
Santa read the list over to Jessie. He looked at the dog. “Have I missed anything Jessie?”
Jessie jumped up and ran to her toy box. She rummaged through the plush toys and leads and pulled out an old green tennis ball and trotted up to Santa. She plopped the ball in Santa’s lap and barked.
Santa laughed. “All right, Jessie. I’ll add one more item.”
- Spend more time playing with Jessie.
Santa signed the paper and propped it on the table where Molly would find it when she returned. “I think I will start my resolutions early. Why don’t we go throw the ball in Claus park?”
Jessie jumped up, grabbed the ball and ran to the door. She didn’t know if Santa would be able to keep his resolution to play more all year but for now he was trying and Jessie liked his list. Maybe tomorrow she could convince him to go for a job around the arena.