Happy endings are not as common in real life as they are in fairy tales.
Which is why the story of Honey the cat seemed destined for a sad conclusion.
She was found in Douglasville, in wretched condition, with a computer chip that identified her as coming from the Netherlands.
For weeks the Georgia SPCA was trying to find her owners or, at least, a home for the holidays.
And ...then...today.....well, let's take you back a bit.
SPCA volunteers Marjan Trip and Carmela Quinlan spent days on the computer....and the phone...trying to find honey's owner.
Marjan, who is from the Netherlands, spoke with people there...but the trail went cold.
"I had given up" admitted Marjan Trip. "After about a month looking on the internet and searching his name, we had given up."
But when eleven alive did a story about Honey two days ago, Marjan posted it on her facebook page...and her friends in Holland saw it.
"My source in Holland gave your article to a local news show in Holland" said Marjan. "And they sent it back to an animal shelter in Holland. It's complicated how it all worked."
A lieutenant colonel in the U.S. army...who had moved his family from Holland to Douglasville, Georgia.
Carmela Quinlan left him a message.
"When he called me back" related Carmela, "and said 'we're coming there now'...and I said, 'you want honey?' and he said, 'yes, we're going to come and get the cat'. And I said, 'oh, my God. This is...my Christmas wish has come true."
Lieutenant colonel Steven Michalke...his wife Teresa...and their five adopted children...came to the Georgia SPCA for their reunion with honey.
"Very,very surprised. Very pleased...very,very pleased" said a joyful Teresa Michalke. "But very surprised that she was found...and alive."
It turns out that colonel Michalke was stationed in Belgium when they got honey...then transferred to Holland...and then back to the states...to Douglasville... Two years ago.
This September Honey slipped out an open door and never returned.
"Not too long after that then we got our floods there...there in the Douglasville" Teresa Michalke said. "We got a lot of rain. And still we're out looking for her and just could not find her. And we just thought that she was gone."
It apparently takes more than a flight from Holland...and a five hundred year flood...to get the best of Honey.
"All of our family's together" Teresa said. "My husband's home from Kuwait. And the cat's back. So....it's great."
And somewhere at the North Pole, a jolly old elf is smiling.