A California Magazine with Local Focus and Global Appeal:
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The Bark Before Christmas

by Sandra Murphy

Melanie is barely back at Howard Academy as a tutor for special-needs kids when the principal decides she’s the perfect person to oversee the annual Christmas bazaar—which is only a week away, the previous chairwoman having just eloped to Cabo with her lawyer. Luckily, Melanie is well liked by the teachers and parents, so all are willing to pitch in to help. The only snag is that the Santa hired for Pet Photos with Santa cancels the day before the bazaar. Before Melanie can panic, the principal says a substitute called and volunteered to do the job.


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