“Jingle bells, jingle bells,” sang Midge as she and Booker-T hurried along the sidewalk on their way to Jake's house. “I don't hear you singing,” said Midge. “Don't you like to sing?”
“You don't want to hear me sing,” laughed Booker-T.
“Why?” asked Midge. “This is the time of year a lot of people like to sing the festive songs.”
“Not me, Midge,” said Booker-T.
“I never hear you sing,” said Midge. “Don't you sing when you are happy?”
“Oh no,” said Booker-T. “I purr when I am happy.”
“I don't know how to purr,” said Midge. “I don't think Jake does either.”
“I don't think dogs purr,” said Booker-T. “It is a cat thing.”
“But why don't you want to sing with me?” asked Midge. “Just sing one song with me.”
“I sound like a sick cow that is stuck in the mud when I sing,” said Booker-T. “It really isn't a good thing to hear.”
“You can't be that bad,” smiled Midge trying to encourage him to sing. “Come on and try just this one time for me.”
“Hmmm,” smiled Booker-T. “Okay, you asked for it. Prepare your ears. It won't sound good.”
The two began to sing, “Jingle bells, jingle bells, jingle all the way.”
“Oh my” smiled Midge. “You really can't sing.”
“I tried to warn you that it was bad,” laughed Booker-T. “Now you know why you never hear me sing. I sound like a sick cow.”
“I'm sorry,” said Midge. “I won't ask you to sing again unless you just really want to sing with me.”
“Thank you,” smiled Booker-T. “I will listen to you sing okay.”
“Jingle bells, jingle bells,” sang Midge as they entered the gate at Jake's house.
“Hey you two,” called Jake as he jumped out of the porch swing. “Sounds like you are in the spirit today.”
“Good morning Jake,” smiled Midge. “I love this time of the year.”
“Me too,” said Jake. “I didn't hear you singing Booker-T. You don't like to sing?”
“Don't ask him to sing, Jake,” said Midge shaking her head. “It isn't pretty.”
“That isn't nice to say,” said Jake.
“Oh but she is right, Jake,” said Booker-T. “I don't sing good at all. My singing, no one wants to hear.”
“Maybe someone would like to hear you,” suggested Jake.
“No,” replied Booker-T. “My singing doesn't sound good at all. I don't even sound like I am singing. I sound like a very sick cow.”
“I don't think anyone can be that bad,” laughed Jake.
“He is right,” said Midge nodding her head. “I talked him into singing jingle bells with me and he really can't sing. He tries but it is really not good. No offense Booker-T.”
“It's okay Midge,” said Booker-T.
“I'm not as good as Midge,” said Jake. “But I do like to sing sometimes. This time of the year it's fun and makes me want to sing too.”
“Do you like this time of the year, Booker-T?” asked Midge.
“It is nice time,” smiled Booker-T. “ All the singing, the smells of the good food that people are cooking and the smell of the pine tree inside the house.”
“Does your owner get a real tree for Christmas time?” asked Midge.
“Aren't all the trees real?” asked Booker-T. “The tree in my house is real but someone cut if off and my owner has it in a pot with water.”
“No, mine used to but now she gets something she calls an artificial tree,” said Jake.
“What is artificial?” asked Booker-T.
“It is a tree that is not real,” said Midge.
“A tree that is not real?” asked Booker-T. “How do you get a tree that is not real?”
“Someone makes them out of metal and plastic I think,” said Jake. “They look like they are real, but they don't grow.”
“My tree is real but it don't grow either,” said Booker-T.
“It used to grow but then some guy cuts them down and now they don't grow anymore,” said Midge. “They are still real. But they don't last very long.”
“An artificial tree last very long time,” said Jake. “My owner said they are cleaner and she told someone she got tired of cleaning up the needles from the floor.”
“Why did your owner have needles all over the floor,” said Booker-T. “Don't she use the for her sewing?”
“These are different kinds of needles,” laughed Midge. “These are tree needles.”
“ They call them needles because they look like needles,” said Jake.
“We have them all over the floor all the time,” said Midge. “She cleans them up every day when she comes home from work.”
“What do you want for Christmas Jake?” asked Booker-T.
“I want a new collar,” said Jake. “Mine is very old now. I heard my owner telling someone she wanted a food and water bowl set for me with my name on it.”
“I want a new collar too,” said Midge. “With a pretty bow for my ear that is same color and maybe some nice treats to eat. What do you want Booker-T?”
“I just got a nice new collar last year when I came to live with my owner,” said Booker-T. “I would like to have a nice soft ball to play with and maybe some nice treats too.”
“How is Snappy doing?” asked Jake. “Does he want something for Christmas?”
“What do you get a turtle for Christmas?” asked Booker-T.
“Maybe we should get him a couple nice rocks from his old pond for him and some little sticks for his tank,” suggested Midge.
“I think he would like that,” said Booker-T.
“That is a good idea,” said Jake. “Let's go see what we can find for him.”
The three agreed to find something nice for Snappy at the pond. They know he used to sit on the rocks and enjoy the sunshine in the afternoons. So maybe a couple nice pretty rocks. They hurried to the park to start their search around the pond.