Sunday, November 25, 2012

Too Many Turkeys

It was the week before Thanksgiving. Nicolette Bradshaw's mother had just had baby Hope, and she wasn't up to a cooking a big Thanksgiving dinner. "Are we going to have turkey?" asked Nicolette worriedly. It just wouldn't be Thanksgiving without turkey. 

"Of course." Mommy assured her. "But, it is just going to be you and me and Daddy this year for dinner." she explained.

"Oh." replied Nicolette quietly. She was used to big gatherings of twenty or thirty people with her grandparents, and lots of aunts, uncles and cousins. She was sad that she wouldn't get to see her cousins but she was happy to have Mommy and Daddy and her new baby sister all to herself.

On Sunday, Daddy went out to the supermarket. He brought back a big turkey. It looked really tasty. Nicolette couldn't until  waited until it was cooked and ready to eat.

On Monday, Grandma came over  to drop off some food. She brought potatoes and Cranberry sauce and Pumpkin Pie and another turkey. "I knew your Daddy would be too busy to get a turkey so I got this with my grocery rewards." she told Nicolette as Nicolette helped her put the food away until it needed to be heated up for Thanksgiving dinner.

"But Grandma." Nicolette said. "Daddy got a turkey."

"Well this one was free." explained Grandma as if that would make it taste better.

Nicolette knew better than to try arguing with Grandma. She didn't know what they were going to do with two turkeys though. Two whole turkeys was way to much for four people especially when one of them was baby, Hope who couldn't even eat turkey.

On Tuesday, Uncle Bill and Aunt Betty stopped by on their way out of town. They were going to their daughter's house  for Thanksgiving, and she lived in another state. They dropped off another turkey. "We got this turkey fresh from Tom's Turkey farm." explained Aunt Betty handing Nicolette another turkey. "We have been going there for years, and their turkeys are absolutely the freshest most tasty turkeys around." she added.

Nicolette sighed. They now had three turkeys. What were they supposed to do with three turkeys? They would surely be eating leftover turkey for a long long time. Just the thought of it was making Nicolette lose her appetite for turkey at all.

On Wednesday, some of the neighbor's came by. They greeted Nicolette warmly and handed her yet another turkey. "We knew your Mom would be busy with the new baby so we brought you this." they said cheerfully.

Nicolette could not believe they now had four turkeys. She was truly beginning to hate the sight of turkey, and she did not care if she ever saw, smelled or tasted another turkey as long as she lived.

"What's the matter, Princess?" Daddy asked her cheerfully when he arrived home from work that day. He hated to see her looking so sad.

"What are we going to do with four turkeys?" asked Nicolette worriedly. "I don't want to be eating turkey for the rest of my life."

"Four turkeys?" said Daddy in surprise. "How did we get four turkeys?" He didn't sound the least bit upset about it though. After Nicolette explained how they came to have four turkeys, he still didn't seem the least bit upset. "I'll take care of it." he told her, "and I promise you won't have to eat turkey every day for the rest of your life." He took three of the turkeys and left the house.

Nicolette couldn't imagine where he went with them. "Where did you go, Daddy?" she asked eagerly when he returned.

"I took the extra turkeys to the food bank to be donated to people who don't have any turkeys." explained Daddy. "There are a lot of hungry people out there. We can share with them like our friends and family shared with us."

"Oh Daddy." said Nicolette proudly. "That is so nice." Suddenly four turkeys didn't seem like too many at all.  It seemed like too few. She wished they had enough turkeys to feed all the hungry people in the world. Well, at least they had been able to give turkeys to three families. It might not be the whole world, but it was a start.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Mommy and Daddy Love You More!

Lacy and Jacy Edwards were twins. They loved each other and they hated each other. They were each other's best friends and each others worst enemies. More than  anything, they were incredibly jealous of each other. They were each convinced that Mommy and Daddy loved the other one more.

"You like her better than me!" Lacy accused Mommy when she saw Mommy sitting on the couch and laughing with Jacy.

Mommy smiled brightly at Lacy. "Don't be silly," she said calmly. "Of course, I love you too."

Now, it was Jacy's turn to get upset. "You like her better than me." she pouted.

Mommy sighed tiredly. "I love you both the same."

This did not make Lacy or Jacy happier. Neither of them smiled. Neither of them felt better.

Another time, Lacy took a ride to the store with Daddy. When they got back, Jacy was standing by the door waiting for them. She did not look happy. "I knew she was your favorite!" she said angrily pointing her finger at Daddy.

"I have two favorite daughters." replied Daddy scooping Jacy up into his arms and kissing her. Jacy smiled happily.

Lacy frowned angrily. "Pick me up, Daddy." she said tugging on his arm as he set Jacy down again. Daddy smiled and kissed her, but he didn't pick her up. "I knew you were his favorite." she said to Jacy angrily as Daddy went into the house.

Finally, Mommy and Daddy had enough. They sat Lacy and Jacy down on the couch one afternoon and had a talk with them. "We do not love either of you better than the other." they said "We love you both exactly the same."

To prove it, they had a Mommy and Lacy and Jacy day. Mommy fixed both their hair exactly the same way and did their nails exactly the same way. Then, they had tea (well really milk and cookies). They each had the same amount of cookies and the same amount of milk, and Mommy sat right in the middle of the them.

They had a Daddy and Lacy and Jacy night. They sat on the couch and ate popcorn each in a little individual bowl of the same size. Daddy sat right in the middle of them and held one arm around each of them.

That night, in their room, as they got ready for bed, Lacy said to Jacy "I'm sorry I was jealous of you. I know that Mommy and Daddy love us the same."

"I'm sorry too." replied Jacy. "I know they love us the same too." she replied.

They ran down the stairs excitedly to say goodnight to Mommy and Daddy and tell them that they were done being jealous of each other.  Mommy and Daddy were sitting on the couch with their arms around each other. They looked really happy.

Jacy and Lacy looked at Mommy and Daddy. Then, they looked at each other. They looked back at Mommy and Daddy. "You love Daddy better than us!" said Lacy angrily pointing at Daddy.

"You love Mommy better than us." added Jacy pointing at Mommy.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Baby Becka

Today's Story is by Melia!

Becka Barnaby was 4 years old. She lived with her mom, her dad, and her big sister Nicole. Nicole was 16 years old. Nicole got to do everything. And get things Becka was to young to get. Nicole even had a 1 year old puppy named Scooter, and a boyfriend named Mike. Becka was very jealous. One day Mommy was sitting on the couch in the living room, checking her email on her laptop, and Becka was sitting on the floor playing with her baby dolls when Nicole walked in. "Mom can I go to Danielle Delanardy's party she is in my homeroom. The party is this Saturday. Please." begged Nicole.

Mommy thought a moment, then answered, "You can go but be back by midnight."

"Yes!" Nicole shrieked.

"Mommy I want to go to a party like Nicole." declared Becka.

"Sorry baby, but your to young." Mommy explained.

The next day when Nicole was taking Scooter for a walk Becka said to Mommy, "I want a puppy."

"Sorry baby, but your to young." Mommy explained.

Later that week when Nicole was leaving to go on a date with Mike Becka said, "Mommy I want a boyfriend."

"Sorry baby, but your to young." Mommy explained.

"It's not fair." complained Becka.

"What's not fair?" asked Mommy.

"Nicole gets to do everything. But I can't because I'm to little. I wish I was the oldest." Becka told Mommy.

 "Baby it's nice to be the youngest also. You get to do everything last. When you see Nicole doing or getting something you know to look forward to getting to do it yourself. And the mistakes we made on Nicole we know not to make on you." Mommy explained.

Mommy gave Becka a big hug.

After that, Becka wasn't as jealous anymore.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Big Girl Beth

Today's Story is by Melia!

Beth Brooks, an 11 year old girl, lived with her mom, her dad, and her little sister Lola. Lola was 7 years old. To you and me that isn't a very big age difference, but to Beth it was. Beth was so jealous of Lola. She wished it was herself who was the youngest. Lola got away with everything. Even things Beth didn't get away with.

 "But mooom, it isn't fair." whined Beth.

. "It isn't fair to me that your whining." replied Mom. "Go to your room."

"But -" started Beth.

"I said, TO YOUR ROOM." Mom commanded. 

She had wanted to watch her favorite show, but she had used up her screen time. Later that day, a while after Beth had come out of room, Lola had asked to play her ds. "Pleeeaaaaase!" begged Lola.

"No means no!" mom answered abruptly.

"But mommy -" Lola began, but then Mom cut her off.

"Fine you can play your ds for a half hour." answered Mom.

"Thank you mommy." Lola exclaimed sweetly.

Then she ran off to play. "When I whine I get sent to my room." declared Beth. "When Lola whines she gets what she wants."

"That is not true." defended Mom.

"It is to! Lola gets everything she wants. She's so perfect. I always have to be a good influence on her. And protect her. And let her use my things. And take the high road. She just sits back and relaxes. And gets everything she wants. And never gets in trouble, or yelled at. And everybody thinks she so cute. And she's your little baby. I wish I was the youngest. " Beth explained through tears.

"Sweety, do you really feel like that?" Mom asked.

Beth nodded. "Honey, you don't have to let her use your things. She has to take the high road too sometimes. She does work too. She doesn't get everything she wants. And nobody's perfect. And she does get in trouble. And people think you are beautiful. And you are my baby too. Listen Beth, I was the oldest also. I know what it's like. I mean ya it's tough but it's also fun. She looks up to you." Mom told her.

"I guess your right." Beth agreed. They hugged.

After that Beth still got jealous sometimes, but overall Beth and Lola got along much better.

Monday, October 29, 2012


Once upon a time, there was a Mom and a Big Sister and a Little Sister. They all lived in a house in a nice neighborhood with a good school. One fine sunny day, they decided to have lunch out on their back patio.They were sitting pleasantly eating their lunch when the phone rang.

Mom went into the house to answer it. It was Grandma. Big Sister and Little Sister came into the house to talk to her too. Grandma was quite a talker. Once she got going, it was hard to get her to stop talking so they were gone for quite a while.

When they finally came out, Mom said "Someone has been eating my lunch." She held up her chicken sandwich which had a big bite out of it."

Big sister said, "Someone has been eating my lunch." She held up her ham sandwich which was half eaten.

"Someone has been eating my lunch." said little sister, "and, now it is all gone!" She held up the empty plate where her tuna fish sandwich had been.

They went back into the house and went into the den. "Someone has been sitting in my seat." said Mom. She picked up the cushions from her chair off the floor where they had fallen and put them back on her chair.

"Someone has been sitting in my chair." said Big Sister. She brushed away some fur that had been left on her chair.

"Someone has been sitting in my chair and they knocked it over." said Little sister. She picked up her chair off the floor.

They went upstairs to the bedrooms. First they went into Mom's room. "Someone has been lying in my bed." said Mom. She fixed her rumpled covers.

They went into the girls' room. "Someone has been lying in my my bed." said Big Sister. She straightened up the toys that she kept on her bed.

"Someone has been sleeping in my bed, and there she is!" said Little sister pointing to her bed. There was their golden furry cat, Giglocks,  purring soundly in the middle of Little Sister's bed. They all laughed. The noise startled Gigilocks. She woke up and opened her eyes and scrambled out of the room. They all laughed even harder.

"Come on." said Mom to the two girls when they finally stopped laughing. "I'll make you some more lunch." They went back downstairs.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Patricia's Pretty Pink Party Dress

Patricia Underwood was going to be 7 years old in a week. She was having a princess party. She couldn't wait to put up her special party decorations. She couldn't wait to taste her delicious chocolatey cake with the creamy pink frosting. Most of all, she couldn't wait to wear her brand-new pretty pink party dress.

Every day, she would go to her closet and stare at her dress. "Can I just try it on for a minute, mommy?" she begged.

Her mother smiled at her eagerness. "Patience my darling." she said. "Your birthday will be here soon enough." Patricia frowned disappointedly. She didn't think so.

A few days before her birthday, Patricia stood in front of her closet again staring at her dress. She was going to ask Mommy again if she could try on her beautiful party dress. She opened her mouth to call out to her mother, but then quickly closed it again. What could it hurt if she just tried the dress on for a minute she thought. Mommy wouldn't have to know. She quickly looked out out of her bedroom door. Nobody was around. She locked the door. She gently lifted the dress out of the closet and slipped it off the hanger. She put it on. It felt so satiny and smooth next to her skin. Now, she really felt like a  beautiful princess. She wanted to see if she looked as pretty as she felt.

Patricia tiptoed to her door. She put her ear to it and listened. She heard the sound of Mommy's voice loudly talking to Grandma on the phone downstairs. She quickly opened her bedroom door and scurried into Mom's room across the hall. She went over to the full length mirror on Mommy's closet door and gazed in. "Oh!" she said happily staring at her reflection. Finally, she pulled herself away from the mirror. She realized she better hurry and put her dress away before Mommy got off the phone.

As Patricia hurried out of the room, she accidentally knocked into Mommy's make-up table.Several bottles of perfume fell off the table and spilled all over her dress. It smelled awful. It smelled like a perfume factory.  "Oh no!" she cried bursting into tears. "My dress is ruined." She went back to her room, and quickly peeled off her dress and threw it on the bottom of her closet. Then, she lay down on her bed just as she heard Mommy coming up the stairs.

"Grandma is going to pick up the cake on her way to your party." said Mommy. Patricia nodded, but she didn't smile. Mommy knew it wasn't like her to not be more excited about something having to do with her upcoming birthday party. "What's the matter?" she asked sitting down on the bed beside Patricia.

"Nothing." said Patricia quietly, but she didn't smile.

Mommy looked around the room. She spied a flash of pink under the closet door. She went to the closet and opened the door. She saw Patricia's party dress lying in a crumbled heap on the floor. She  pulled it out of the closet. She looked at Patricia and frowned. Then, suddenly, she smelled a terrible odor. She sniffed and realized it was coming from the  dress. She looked at Patricia. "What happened?" she asked.

Patricia didn't say anything. She just started to cry.

"It's okay." said Mommy trying to remain calm. "Just tell me."

"I'm sorry Mommy." said Patricia through her tears. "I know you told me not to try-on my dress before my party, but it was just so beautiful. I just couldn't help myself. Now it's ruined, and I have no party dress! I might as well not have a party at all!" She buried her head in her pillow and started crying even louder.

Mommy sat down beside her and gently lifted her face off her pillow. "Don't worry, baby." she said sweetly. "I can wash it  and the smell should come out, but it could have been much worse. Maybe, next time you'll listen. Sometimes, mommies know what they're talking about. They don't just say things to be mean."

Patricia nodded and smiled. "I love you, mommy." she said.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Amy Knows All

Amy O'Brien was five years old, and she knew everything. At least she thought she did. Whenever anybody asked a question Amy had the answer even if it was the wrong answer. "Why does it rain?" asked her little sister Alecia.

"Because people in heaven are crying." replied Amy.

"Why is Mickey Mouse's dog named Pluto? asked her best friend, Cara when they were sitting on the couch one day watching The Mickey Mouse Club together.

"Because he's from another planet." replied Amy.

Sometimes, Amy had the answers even if people didn't even ask the questions. "Baby horses are called horsies." she explained to her little sister at the zoo one day.

"George Washington was the first president of America and Abraham Lincoln was the second." she told her friend Cara.

Before anybody could ever open their mouth and say anything, Amy always had the answer. "Amy," suggested her mother, "Maybe, other people know things too."

Amy would smile and say. "Sure they do, but not as much as me."

"Amy," said her father. "Did you ever think that maybe there are some subjects that other people know more about than you?"

Amy shook her head no. Really, the thought had never crossed her mind.

One day, Amy's mother told her that the show School House Rock was going to be performed. Amy really wanted to go see it. Her mother had given her a School House Rock DVD, and she really loved watching it. "Can we go see it, mommy?" she asked eagerly. Mommy nodded. Amy jumped up and down excitedly.

Soon the day of the play arrived. Mommy and Amy got in the car. Alecia was staying with Daddy. She was not a big girl like Amy.

After a few minutes, Amy looked out the window and frowned. "Mommy, you're going the wrong way." she said worriedly.

"No, I'm not, sweetie." her mother gently assured her.

That did not make Amy feel one bit better. "Of course, you're going the wrong way, Mommy." Amy insisted. "The school is the other way."

Mommy tried to explain to Amy that the show was not at the school, it was at the community theater. Amy didn't want to hear it. "It's at the school, Mommy. It's School House Rock. It isn't commununity theater rock."

When Amy's mother tried to explain it to her again, Amy begin to cry. "Please Mommy. Please turn the car around." She kept crying and carrying on until her mother couldn't stand it any more, and she turned the car around.

Amy wiped her eyes. "Thank you, Mommy. Thank you." she said gratefully. She leaned forward eagerly in her seat. She couldn't wait to see the show.

The school parking lot was empty. Amy couldn't understand why. Mommy was going to drive right by the school, but Amy insisted they stop and look around. They went around the whole school twice, but there was nobody there.

"I don't understand it." said Amy disappointedly.

"I've been trying to explain to you, " said her mother. "The show is at the community theater. Just because it's called School House Rock doesn't mean it's going on at the school."

"Oh." said Amy quietly. "I guess I don't know everything after all."

Mommy smiled and kissed her. "I guess you don't." she agreed. "But, don't worry. Nobody knows everything." she added.

"Yes." agreed Amy, "but I know most things."

Saturday, October 6, 2012

Belinda Wears Black

Today's Story is by Melia!

Belinda Blake loved black. Everything had to be black. "Belinda, sweetie, it's time for your first day of first grade." called Mommy. 

Belinda was ecstatic. She came bouncing down the stairs in 20 seconds. "Well someone's happy." Daddy called as he bounded in through the kitchen door.

He kissed Belinda on the cheek. Belinda's older brother Ty, and her older sister Marissa came in from the dining room each holding a banana and a poptart. "Hey,Hey,Hey." Marissa cheerily exclaimed.

 Ty just gave a small wave. Belinda was wearing a black dress with a black bow tied around the middle, she wore shiny, bright, black wedges,  and in her wavy brown hair was a black headband with a big black flower on it. "Let's go." urged Belinda.

She pulled Mommy out the door. When they got there, Marissa skipped in and Mommy and Daddy each blew her a kiss. "Hi, I'm Mrs. Hoogledoggen, you must be Belinda." the teacher greeted.

Belinda found her seat and sat down. "Hi, I'm Belinda." Belinda explained to the girls at the table.

The girls stared at her like she had two heads. They were both wearing bright colored dresses. One's name was Emmy. The other was named Jess. Jess was wearing a baby blue dress. Emmy was wearing a hot pink dress. In fact, when Belinda looked around everyone was wearing bright colors except Belinda.  Belinda was embaressed. The next day Belinda borrowed Marissa's clothes without asking. She came down the stairs wearing a bright blue dress, with pink shoes, and a bright purple headband. "Belinda why are you wearing my clothes?" Marissa asked. "They aren't even black.

"Everybody else wore bright colors." Belinda cried.

"But everybody else isn't you. You are Belinda Blake, and Belinda wears black. Besides you are the only Belinda, so don't try to be someone you aren't. Just be you." Marissa soothed.

"Thanks, Marissa." Belinda replied.

The girls hugged. "Now go get dressed or you'll be late for school." Marissa exclaimed..

Belinda changed her clothes into a black top with black pants. At school Belinda played with Emmy and Jess. It turned out they were staring at her because they admired how she wore completely black even though no one else did.

Belinda learned to always be herself, and it doesn't matter what other people think about you, what matters is what you think.

Friday, October 5, 2012

Very Good Valerie

Willa Quinlan was five years old. Her older sister, Valerie was seven. Valerie was a very good girl. Willa was a very bad girl. or at least she thought she was. Nobody ever told Willa she was a bad girl. She just knew. All, she ever heard was "Valerie, what a good girl you are" or "Valerie, what a polite girl you are." or "Valerie, what a nice girl you are." Nobody ever said these things to Willa.

Willa was a tomboy. She liked to play in the dirt and climb trees and run around. She couldn't sit still for more than a minute or two. Valerie liked to sit quietly and play with her dolls. She hated dirt and trees. She could sit still for hours.

Willa loved Valerie, but she was also jealous of her big sister. Just once, she wanted to hear someone say "Willa, what a good girl you are." She decided if she needed to be more like her sister to have people treat her like her sister than that's what she would do. She went to her closet and put on a pretty dress. Then, she went down to the kitchen where Mommy was making breakfast.

Mommy was frying eggs. She looked up when she saw Willa and smiled. "Why, Willa" she said teasingly. "I have never seen you wear a dress before without my having to make you wear one."

Willa frowned at mommy and rolled her eyes. "Mommy," she said in her most grown up voice. "I'm five years old now. I'm a lady."

Mommy gave Willa a puzzled look. "Okay, she said. "but, I thought you would want to play in the mud puddles from last night's rain. You can't do that in a dress."

Willa went to the window and looked out. She looked longingly at the mud puddles. Then, she quickly turned away from the window. "I'm too old for that stuff." she said, but she didn't sound happy about it.

"Are you sure?" asked Mommy.

Willa nodded. "When is breakfast? I'm starving." she said quickly changing the subject.

After breakfast, Valerie sat and played with her dolls in the den.  Willa sat and played with her dolls too. She didn't really like dolls that much and she didn't have as many as Valerie. Valerie happily played with her dolls without losing interest. Willa quickly got bored. She started throwing her dolls around.

The noise of the dolls hitting the wooden floor brought Mommy hurrying to see what was going on."Willa!" she said angrily. "We don't throw our dolls on the floor."

 Willa reluctantly stopped. She went over to the window and sat down and looked out. Those mud puddles sure looked fun.  Maybe, if she just went out and looked at them close up, it would be okay. She looked around to see if Mommy was still there. She wasn't. Valerie was still busy playing with her dolls in the corner. She wasn't paying attention to Willa. Willa quietly tiptoed out of the house.

Willa quietly stood by a big mud puddle. She thought about all the beautiful mud pies she could make from such a nice mud puddle. She better not think about that. She better go do something  less messy like Valerie would do if she wanted to be like Valerie. She quickly turned to go back in the house, but she turned a little bit too quickly and lost her balance. Splat! She fell right into the mud puddle.

At just that moment, Mommy looked out of the window. She saw the mudcovered Willa and came running out of the house. "Willa!" she exclaimed angrily. "Why did you put on a nice dress if you wanted to play in the mud?"

Willa instantly started crying. Her tears mixed with the mud on her face making her  an even bigger mess than she already was. "I didn't want to play in the mud, Mommy." she explained through her tears. "I just wanted to look at it. I don't want to do those things anymore. I want to be a good girl like Valerie."

Mommy took Willa in her arms and hugged her tightly not even caring that the mud that was all over Willa started getting all over Mommy too. "Oh, Willa." she said. "Sometimes, you get into trouble, but nobody ever said you weren't a good girl."'

"But everybody always says what a good girl Valerie is."

"That doesn't mean your not a good girl." said Mommy.

"But, Valerie is always a good girl."

"Nobody is always a good girl. Remember when Valerie tried to make doll clothes out of the flowered blanket?"

"She made a big hole in it." Willa remembered. She smiled at the memory, but then she immediately frowned.  "But,it would probably be better if I was more like Valerie. More good."

Now, it was Mommy's turn to frown. "You're a good girl, Willa Quinlan, and I don't want you to be like anyway but you." She gave Willa a big hug not even caring that by now, she was looking almost as muddy as Willa. Willa smiled and happily hugged her mother back.

"Why we don't we go in the house and get cleaned up?" suggested Mommy. "You can put on some clothes that are better for playing in mud puddles."

"I'd like that." said Willa cheerfully following her mother into the house.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Ula's Umbrella

Ula Erickson had an umbrella. It was pink and purple with flowers and butterflies. It was fancy and frilly and super girly. It was her favorite possession. Her beloved Aunt Millie gave it to her for her 7th birthday. She used it in the sun and in the rain.

Ula had a younger sister named Adria.  Adria was jealous of Ula's umbrella. "Aunt Millie likes Ula better than me." Adria complained one day as she watched Ula get ready to go out in the rain with her umbrella.

"Of course, she doesn't." insisted Mommy. "What would make you say that?"

"She didn't give me a pretty umbrella like Ula's."

Mommy smiled. "Don't worry. You'll get one when you're older." she assured Adria  However, that was not good enough for Adria. Sometimes, she hated being the youngest. It was not fair!

About a week later, Ula's umbrella disappeared. She looked all over the house for it. She could not find it anywhere. "Adria!" she shouted angrily. "Did you see my umbrella?"

"No, I didn't." replied Adria.

"Adria!" shouted Ula even angrier. "What did you do with my umbrella?"

"What is going on?" asked Mommy upon hearing all the yelling. She did not like it when Ula and Adria screamed at each other. They were sisters. Sisters should get along.

Ula and Adria both began talking at once. "Hold on! One at a time." said Mommy. She led them to the couch in the den where they each sat on either side of her.

"Adria stole my umbrella." complained Ula.

"I did not!" insisted Adria.

"Yes, you did!" replied Ula. "I know you were always jealous, and you always wanted it.You definitely took it!"

Mommy looked Adria right in the eyes."Did you take it?" she asked.

Adria looked Mommy right back in the eyes. "No, Mommy." she replied.

"Well, alright then." said Mommy. "We'll have to look for it."

Ula shook her head. She looked from Mommy to Adria and back again. She didn't care what Adria said or what Mommy believed. She knew Adria had taken it. Adria had always been jealous of her umbrella. Ula fled from the room in tears.

Days passed. Many of them rainy ones, perfect days for Ula's umbrella. Still there was no sign of the umbrella. Ula continued to think that Adria had stolen it. Adria continued to insist that she hadn't. They barely spoke to each other except to argue. They constantly glared at each across the room. Mommy tried to get them to stop fighting. "You're sisters." she said. "Sister's need each other. You shouldn't act this way. You should kiss and make up." Ula and Adria wouldn't listen.

About a week later, Ula's best friend, Amelia came back from  a vacation to Florida. She came right over to see Ula. Ula was so happy to see her. It had been really lonely with Amelia away and not even having Adria to play with. "Oh Amelia!" she exclaimed happily upon seeing her friend on her doorstep. "I'm so happy your home. I missed you."

"I'm glad to see you too." replied Amelia  "and I brought you something."

"Oh." replied Ula excitedly. "You didn't have to." She eagerly took the plastic bag Amelia handed her. She couldn't imagine what could be inside it. Maybe, it was a t-shirt or a pretty shell or a souvenir from Disney World.

Amelia laughed. "Don't get so excited. It is not that kind of thing." she said. "I didn't get it on my vacation."

Ula frowned in confusion. Now, she really couldn't imagine what it could be. She quickly reached into the bag and pulled out her umbrella. To Ula, this was even better than a t-shirt or a shell or even a souvenir from Disney World. She was instantly filled with a jumble of emotions: relief at having her umbrella back, confusion over how Amelia got it, and regret for having accused Adria of taking it. She was so full of mixed up emotions that at first, she couldn't even talk.  She just stood there staring at her umbrella.

"You left it at my house before I went away." explained Amelia.

All Ula could do was nod. Finally, she got her emotions under control. "Adria!" she called.

Adria came running eagerly into the room. Despite, the fact that she and Ula hadn't been talking she still loved her sister and missed playing with her.

"I'm sorry, Adria." said Ula. She really really was sorry. "I'm sorry I accused you of talking my umbrella." She hugged Adria.

Adria smiled. "That's okay." she said quietly. She was glad Ula had gotten her umbrella back and Ula was speaking to her again, but she was still jealous.

Ula happily clutched her umbrella to her.  She was so happy to have it back. She couldn't bare to face another rainy day without it.  She was so lucky to have her special umbrella. Suddenly, she looked up at Adria. Adria was staring at Ula with sad puppy dog eyes. "I'm sorry, Adria." said Ula again.

"Yes,  you already said that." replied Adria.

"No, not that." said Ula. "I'm sorry that you don't have your own special umbrella like me. From now on, I am going to share my umbrella with you."

Adria's eyes lit up like candles on a cake. "Are you sure?" she asked eagerly.

"Yes. I'm sure." replied Ula sincerely. "After all, we're sisters and sister's need each other." She hugged Adria.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Riley's Really Sorry

Riley Evans was always getting into trouble. She made messes. She didn't listen. She did what she wasn't supposed to. Yet, Riley didn't mean to make so much trouble.

"Riley!" called her mother from downstairs "Why are your toys all over the living room again?"

"I'm sorry, Mommy." called Riley. She hurried downstairs to clean her mess. When she was finished, she was really hungry. "Can I have a snack?" she asked eagerly.

Mommy nodded. "Why don't you have a cheese stick?" suggested Mommy.

"We don't have any cheese sticks."

"What do you mean we don't have any cheese sticks?"

Riley looked down at the ground. "I finished them the other day." she admitted.

"Riley," said Mommy disappointedly. "Why didn't you tell me we were out of cheese sticks? I went shopping yesterday. If I had known we were out of them I would have bought more."

"I'm sorry, Mommy." said Riley again. Suddenly, she wasn't very hungry anymore. She quietly tiptoed out of the room before Mommy got even madder and scurried quickly up the stairs.

She flopped down on her bed and looked around her room for something to do. She spied something in the corner of her room and went over to see what it was. It was her yellow ball. She knew Mommy didn't like her to play ball in the house, but she started bouncing it around her room anyway.

"Riley!" called Mommy from downstairs again upon hearing the bounce of the ball. "What are you doing?" She did not sound happy.

Startled by the sound of her mother's voice, Riley let the ball slip out of her hands. It banged into her night table and knocked it over. The lamp that was standing on the table skidded off and broke.

The loud crash sent Mommy quickly rushing up the stairs once again yelling Riley's name. Upon seeing the damage in Riley's room, she didn't say anything. She just looked at Riley disappointedly.

Riley hung her head down and starred at the floor. "I'm sorry. Mommy." she whispered. She really was.

That wasn't enough for Mommy. "I know you're sorry, Riley." she said angrily. "You're always sorry. Sometimes, sorry just isn't good enough. Sorry is not going to fix that lamp. Your grandma gave it to us just for you when you were born. You need to listen. You need to do what your supposed to in the first place. Then, maybe you won't end up having to say you're sorry all the time."

Riley just looked at her mother. She was really really sorry, but she didn't say anything. She was so sorry she had disappointed Mommy. She really wanted to make Mommy proud.

The next day, Riley cleaned her room without being asked. When she finished the last apple she told Mommy. She picked up her roller skates which lay next to the front door and was about to put them on when she remembered she wasn't supposed to skate in the house. She put them away in the garage.

At bedtime. Mommy told her. "I'm very proud of you, Riley. You didn't have to say sorry once today." She smiled at Riley.

At first Riley was really proud and happy. She smiled back at Mommy. Then, suddenly. she burst into tears.

"Riley sweetie," said Mommy sitting on the bed beside her. "Whatever is the matter? Do you feel okay?" Riley nodded through her tears.  "Then, what's the matter?" asked Mommy again. "You had a real good day today. You should be proud of yourself. I'm proud of you."

"I know, Mommy." replied Riley. "I know I was really good today. I know you are proud of me."

"Then, why are you crying?"

"What if I am not so good tomorrow? What if I have to say I'm sorry for something? What if I have to say sorry for a lot of things? Then, you won't be proud of me anymore."

Mommy scooped Riley up in her arms and kissed her. "I will always love you, and I will always be proud of you."

"But what if I'm not always good." worried Riley.

"All I ask is that you try your best." said Mommy.

"I can do that." replied Riley instantly feeling a lot better.

"I know you can." said Mommy.

Monday, September 17, 2012

It's a Long Long Way to Coral Gardens

Lorelei Gifford was five years old. More than anything else in the world she wanted to go to Coral Gardens. She was always hearing her Mom talk about it, and it sounded like the most beautiful place in the world. She could just picture it in her head, lush colorful gardens filled with green grass and trees and flowers of every color. Lorelei could not wait to go there. Every day, she begged "Can we go to Coral Gardens today, please?!"

Every day the answer was the same. "Not today, Lorelei."

Finally, the magical day that Lorelei had waited for came. Finally, she was going to get to go to Coral Gardens. She woke up bright and early and got dressed without Mommy having to even ask her twice. Mommy, Daddy, Lorelei, and her big sister, Ginger all  piled into the car.

For about five minutes. Lorelei sat patiently in the car waiting. Then, she got bored. "Are we there yet?" she asked.

"No, Lorelei." replied Mommy.

"Are we almost there?"


Lorelei sighed and slumped over in her seat. "Will you get off me!" demanded Ginger angrily. "You are taking up the whole seat!" She gave Lorelei a shove toward the window.

"Ow!" said Lorelei rubbing her head. "Now are we there?" she asked.

"Not yet." said Daddy. "Just relax and enjoy the ride."

Lorelei sighed again.

"Why don't you sing songs to pass the time?" suggested Mommy.

"Good idea!" exclaimed Lorelei eager to have something to do to pass the time away. She started singing the ABC song. As soon as she started Ginger took out her I-Pod and put on her own music to drown out the sound of Lorelei singing. Lorelei gave her a nasty look and sang even louder.

Lorelei went through all of the songs she could think of to sing. That took all of about five or ten minutes. Then, she was bored out again. "Are we there yet?" she asked once more.

"No!" said Mommy and Daddy and Ginger all together.

"Are  we almost there?"

"Why don't you look out the window and enjoy the ride."  suggested Mommy.

Lorelei looked out the window. They were on the highway and all she saw were other cars. She rested her head on her cheek and sighed yet again. She started kicking her leg back and forth. "Ow!" exclaimed Ginger as Lorelei accidentally kicked her. "Lorelei stop kicking me."

"Lorelei please sit still." begged Daddy. "I'm trying to drive."

Lorelei tried to sit still and quietly. She tried to concentrate really hard on the picture of Coral Gardens she had in her head. She couldn't wait to get there.

After what seemed like hours and hours to Lorelei, but was actually only about another 15 minutes or so, Mommy finally said. "We're just about there."

Lorelei was so excited. She decided to close her eyes and only open them when they arrived. A few minutes later although it seemed much longer than that, the car came to stop. Lorelei quickly undid her seat belt, jumped out of her seat, and looked up. "Oh, it's so beau--" she stopped herself before she could finish her sentence. Where were the trees? Where was the grass? Where were the flowers? Where were the beautiful gardens? All she saw in front of her was a mall.

She looked at Mom. She looked at Dad. She looked at Ginger. They all looked very serious. Still she thought it must be a joke. She started laughing. "Ha! Ha! Very funny." she said "When are we really going to get to Coral Gardens?"

"You're looking at it:" said Ginger.

Lorelei looked at Mommy and Daddy for confirmation. They nodded their heads. "This is Coral Gardens." said Mommy.  "Coral Gardens is a mall.  We thought you knew that."

"No, I didn't." replied Lorelei disappointedly. All that long boring ride for nothing she thought. Suddenly, she felt very tired.

"Well, you've finally made it to Coral Gardens." said Mommy trying to be cheerful.

"Can we go home yet?" asked Lorelei.

Friday, September 14, 2012

My Dog is Bigger Than Your Dog

Noli Yarborough and Zanita Flynn were best friends. They had been best friends since they first met back in preschool. They loved each other but they were always arguing. They were so competitive about everything. Neither of them ever wanted to give in.

"I am taller than you." Noli said to Zanita on the playground at school one day. She stretched up on her tippy toes.

"You are not!" replied Zanita angrily. She stretched up on her tippy toes too. Noli stretched even more. Zanita stretched more. They kept stretching more and more and trying to make themselves look taller and taller until they both fell over. Then, they stormed off angrily to opposite sides of the playground.

Another day, they were at Zanita's house after school. "I can can count higher than you can." said Zanita. She started counting "one, two, three ..."

"No, you can't!" insisted Noli. She started counting "one, two three..."

"Your messing me up!" said Zanita angrily.

"No, you are messing me up!" replied Noli just as angrily. They glared at each other until Zanita stormed into her house, and Noli went off in a huff to her own house.

Of course, by the next day they were friend's again, and they were at Noli's house. They were sitting on the couch trying to decide what to do when Noli's Chocolate Lab, Coco jumped up on the couch with them. "My dog is bigger than your dog." said Zaneta.

"No, he is not." replied Noli.

"Yes, he is." insisted Zaneta.

"Is not!" said Noli a little louder.

"Is too!" replied Zaneta even louder.

"Hey, what is all the yelling about?" asked Noli's mother entering the room.

"Our dog is bigger than Zaneta's, isn't he Mommy?" said Noli.

"No, he is not." replied Zaneta before Noli's  mother could even reply.

Noli's mother couldn't help smiling. "Oh, is that what this is all about?" she said. Noli and Zaneta nodded their heads and opened their mouths to start arguing again. Noli's mother cut them both off before they could get a word in. "Does it really matter?" she asked. Noli and Zaneta were both silent. They didn't know what to say.  "Does it really matter whose dog is bigger?" continued Noli's mother.

Once again Noli and Zaneta were silent. They looked at each other. They looked at Noli's mother. "No, I guess it doesn't matter." Noli admitted finally.

"I guess not either." added Zaneta. "I'm sorry."

"I'm sorry too." said Noli.

"Best friends?" asked Zaneta.

"Best friends." replied Noli. They hugged each other.

"Now, that's more like it." said Noli's mother. She smiled and left the the room.

"What do you want to do now?" asked Noli. Zaneta shrugged. Noli turned on the TV. Good Luck Charlie was going on.

"I love Good Luck Charlie!" exclaimed Zaneta.

"I love it more than you do!" said Noli.

"No, you don't!" replied Zaneta,

"Yes, I do."  answered Noli.

"No, you -" Zaneta stopped in the middle of her sentence. "It doesn't really matter, does it?" she said.

"No, it doesn't." agreed Noli. They laughed and hugged each other.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

A Cat Like Kiki

Rachel's Grandma had a cat named Kiki. Kiki was an orange tabby. Rachel loved Kiki. Every time she went to Grandma's she would help take care of Kiki. She wished she could have a cat just like Kiki.

One day, her wish came true. "Rachel," said Mommy and Daddy. "We're so proud of you. You have been doing such a good job helping Grandma take care of Kiki. We thought that it's time you got a cat of your own."

"Really!" Rachel squealed excitedly jumping up and hugging each of her parents. "Thank you so much! I can't wait to get my own cat!"

The next day, they took Rachel to the shelter. There were all kinds of cats. There were big cats and little cats. There were black cats and white cats and gray cats. There were  striped cats and plain cats. There were no orange tabby cats like Kiki though. Rachel frowned.

"What's the matter?" asked Mommy. "You look disappointed."

"Aren't there any cats here that you like?" asked Daddy.

Rachel shook her head sadly. "I was kind of hoping for a cat like Kiki." she said.

"But there are plenty of cats here." said Mommy. "How about this one?" she suggested pointing to a little black cat.

"Too black. Too small." replied Rachel.

"Then what about this one?"  suggested Daddy pointing to a big white cat.

"Too white. Too big." replied Rachel.

"Well, why don't you take another look around." said Mommy.

Rachel nodded okay. She took a slow walk around the shelter. She stopped at every cage and studied every cat. Finally, she shook her head again. "No." she insisted. "I don't want any of these cats."

"Okay." said Mommy. "We'll try again next week."

The next week they came back, and there were more cats. There were big cats and little cats. There were black cats and white cats and gray cats. There were striped cats and plain cats. Still there was no orange tabby cat.

Once again, Rachel carefully looked at every cat in every cage. Once again, she rejected every one. "There are no cats here I want." she said sadly.

"Are you sure Rachel?" asked Mommy. "That little gray striped one is awful cute."

"Too little. Too Stripey." replied Rachel shaking her head.

"Then, how about that big black and white one." suggested Daddy.

"Too black. Too white. Too big." said Rachel."I don't want any of these cats." she added pointing around the room to the various cats. "Can we come back next week."

Mommy and Daddy glanced at each other. They were not sure. They did not think Rachel was ever going to find a cat. They did not want to spend every weekend at the shelter.

The next day, Grandma came by. She brought Kiki with her. "Kiki!" exclaimed Rachel scooping the cat up in her arms.

"Come sit down and talk to me." said Grandma. She sat down on the porch swing and Rachel sat beside her. Rachel put Kiki down on her lap. The cat purred happily as Rachel petted her.

"You really love Kiki don't you?" Grandma said to Rachel. Rachel nodded and continued petting Kiki. "Would you liked to have her?"

Rachel nodded. "Can I?" she asked excitedly. "Can I really?"

Grandma nodded. "She loves you and you love her. I am sure you will take good care of her."

"I will!" promised Rachel.

"I am going to miss my little Kiki." Grandma said kissing the cat. "She and I have been together a long time. I got her from the shelter when she was just a baby."

"You did?" asked Rachel in surprise. She did not know that.

"Somebody found her in an abandoned house and brought her there. She was just a scared tiny little thing. They told me that nobody else wanted her because she was so scared and tiny. I knew she was the cat for me though. I knew as soon as I saw her. She needed me "

Rachel looked at Kiki. Rachel had never seen Kiki scared or little. She couldn't imagine Kiki that way. Kiki was certainly happy and healthy now. As if to prove the point, Kiki rubbed her head against Rachel's arm begging to be petted more.

Rachel thought about the cats she had seen in the shelter. Some of them were scared and tiny too. Maybe, one of them needed her like Kiki had needed Grandma. She knew what she had to do. "You keep Kiki, Grandma." she said.

"Are you sure?" asked Grandma.

Rachel nodded. "Kiki doesn't need me. She has you. Those cats at the shelter don't have anybody. They need me. I am going to go back to the shelter to get one of them."

"Are you sure?" asked Grandma again.

Rachel nodded. "Yes I am sure." she replied.

The next week Rachel and Mommy and Daddy went back to the shelter. Rachel picked out a little white cat, the scaredest littlest cat of all. "I'm going to call you, Snowflake." she said to the little cat. "And I am going to take you home with me because you need me, and I need you too."

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Tammy's Not Tired

It had been a long day at the beach for  the Brady family, Mommy, Daddy, ten year old Tim, eight year old Trina, and six year old Tammy.  Everyone was tired. Mommy was tired. Daddy was tired. Tim was tired. Trina was tired. Only Tammy was  not tired or so she said.

After a full day of fun and sun, they trudged tiredly to their car lugging all their belongings with them. "I can't wait to get home, shower and crawl into my bed." said Mom.

"I still have to drive for another couple of hours until we get home." said Dad unhappily.

Tim and Trina just yawned sleepily.

Tammy walked along cheerfully smiling. She had had a really good day filled with building sandcastles, finding shells on the beach, and swimming in the ocean. She only regretted that it had come to an end. She wished they could stay at the beach forever.

They finally reach the car, threw all their stuff in the trunk and piled in.  Mom immediately fell asleep. Tim and Trina closed their eyes too. They were soon sleeping as well.

"Why don't you try sleeping too?" Dad suggested to Tammy. "It's been a long day, and it is going to be a long ride."

"But daddy, I'm not tired." insisted Tammy. "I'll keep you company while everyone else sleeps."

"Thanks, pumpkin." her Dad replied. "But that is not necessary."

"Oh, but I want to, Daddy."

Daddy drove. Mommy, Tim and Trina slept. Tammy chatted. She talked about her day at the beach. She talked about school. She talked about her friends. She talked about everything under the sun. Then, suddenly, the chatter stopped and the car was silent.

"Tammy, honey?" said Daddy. "Are you okay?" Tammy didn't answer. The car was silent except for breathing noises.

"Tammy? Are you okay?" Daddy asked again. He was worried. Tammy had stopped speaking in the middle of a sentence and that was so unlike her. He quickly glanced in his rear view mirror. There was Tammy fast asleep in the back seat in the middle of Tim and Trina.

Daddy laughed. "Not tired, huh?" he said.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Ivy's Not Getting Older

Ivy Wilcox was six years old, and she thought that was the perfect age to be. She was not too old and she was not to young. She decided that she would stay six for ever.

"Mommy." she said. "I am going to be six forever. I am not going to get any older."

Mommy smiled at Ivy. "Oh is that so?" she said.

Ivy sat down in front of the TV. She saw a commercial for a car. "That is a beautiful car!" she said "I"m going to drive a car like that!" she declared.

"If you aren't going to get any older, you won't get a driver's license." said her mother.

"Oh, yeah." said Ivy. She turned off the TV. She took out her best dolly and began playing with it. "Now, Annabelle, honey." she said sweetly to her doll. "It's time for you to go to bed." She tucked her doll gently into her doll cradle.

"You're a good mommy to Annabelle." Ivy's Mom told her.  "Some day you'll be a really great mommy for real. Oh wait a minute! I forgot. You're not going to grow up so you are not going to be a mommy for real."

Ivy frowned. She put her doll stuff away. 

Just then, Daddy came in from work. "Hey, princess!" he said lifting Ivy into the air and kissing her.

"Hey Daddy!" she replied kissing him back.

Daddy gently put her back down on the ground. "I have to get ready to go fishing with Grandpa."

"When are you going to take me fishing?" asked Ivy.

"When you're a little bit older." replied Daddy.

"Ivy's not getting older." explained Mommy.

"She's not?" asked Daddy. He looked at Mommy. Mommy nodded her head. He looked at Ivy. Ivy said nothing.

"Well, that's too bad." said Daddy. "I would have liked taking her fishing. She would have had fun." He went upstairs to change.

Ivy lay down on the couch starring at the floor. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Mommy's big black leather pocketbook next to the table. Mommy's purple flowered makeup bag was peeking out of it. Ivy excitedly sat up and picked up the makeup bag. "Can I put on makeup?" she asked eagerly.

"No, Ivy." said Mommy. "We've talked about this before. You're too young."

"But, I'm never going to be old enough!"

"Not if you don't get any older, you're not." said Mommy.

"I can't do anything." whined Ivy. "I can't drive a car. I can't have a baby. I can't go fishing. I can't wear makeup."

"There are a lot of things you can do. You can ride a bike. You can help take care of your baby cousin. You can go for a walk in the woods with Daddy. You can wear  a braid in your hair. As for those other things, you can do them do when you get a little bit older. If you get older. Why don't you want to get older, anyway?" asked Mommy. She sat on the couch next to Ivy.

"I don't want to get new teachers." admitted Ivy. "I don't want to go to a new school. I don't want to stop being your baby." She crawled up on Mommy's lap.

"The school year is going to end whether you get older or not and after the summer the new school year will start, " said Mommy, "but, you are always going to be my baby."

"Really?" asked Ivy hopefully.

"Really." promised Mommy "Even when you are 100 years old." she added with a grin.

Ivy smiled back. Suddenly, she felt so much better. "I think I will get older after all." she said.

"I think that sounds like a good plan." replied Mommy.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Where's Whitney?

It was time for bed,  Whitney Patterson was nowhere to be found. "Whitney!" her mother called. "Whitney! Where are you, Whitney?'

Mommy went into the living room. Whitney's legos were scattered on the floor. Her Princess DVD collection was  spread out on the table. Her stuffed animals filled up the couch. There was no sign of Whitney.

Mommy went into the basement. Toys and games were everywhere on the floor. Coloring books and crayons covered the table. There was no sign of Whitney.

As Mommy came back up the basement stairs, she found Whitney's older sister, Kerry. "Have you seen Whitney?" asked Mommy.

Kerry shook her head. "I'll help you look." she said. She looked out the window. Whitney's bike was on the front porch. Her jump rope was under the tree. Her pails and shovels lay on the dirt by the rose bushs. There was no sign of Whitney.

They went upstairs. Kerry went into her room. Whitney had definitely been there. Make-up was spilled on the desk. The smell of perfume filled the room. Kerry didn't know whether to be anger about the mess or worried that there was still no sign of her little sister.

In Mommy's room, the covers and pillows were all off the bed and lay in the floor in a jumbled heap. Piles of books were on the floor in front of the closet. There was no sign of Whitney.

By now. Mommy was getting worried. She didn't know whether to call Whitney's Dad or the police or both. She picked up the phone to dial. Just then, she heard the sound of Kerry's voice calling from the other room.

"Hey, Mom." called Kerry. "Come here."

Mommy hurried to the sound of Kerry's voice. She couldn't imagine what had happened to Whitney. Her mind was filled with all these terrible things. She comforted herself with the thought that Kerry didn't sound upset.

Kerry was in Whitney's room. Her room looked just as bad as the rest of the house. All the games were off the shelves and the pieces were here there and everywhere. Cut up pieces of paper overflowed the wastebasket and littered the floor. Art supplies were everywhere on the desk.

"Look Mom." whispered Kerry. She pointed to the bed. There was Whitney half under half on top of her rainbow colored covers fast asleep. She was sleeping so peacefully. She looked like such an angel. It was hard to believe someone who looked so sweet could  leave such a trail of messes everywhere.

"I never would have thought to look here." said Mommy. "I guess she tired herself out."

"I guess so." agreed Kerry.

Mommy tucked Whitney back completely under the covers. Whitney stirred, but didn't wake up. Mommy kissed her on the cheek, and  tiptoed out of the room. Kerry followed closely behind.

"Whitney must be resting up for another day of making messes." said Kerry

It tired Mommy out just thinking about it. "Oh my." she said.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

The Sleepover

Quinn Rutherford was so excited. She was going to have her first sleepover. She was going to spend the night at her friend, Emily Craig's house. Every day, she asked her Mommy excitedly "Is today the day?" Every day, Mommy shook her head. Every day, Quinn was disappointed.

Finally the day arrived, Quinn helped Mommy pack her clothes and a few special toys in her pink princess overnight bag that Grandma had gotten her. As they packed, Quinn noticed, Mommy looked a little bit sad. "Don't be sad, mommy." she said. "I am going to come home again, you know."

Mommy laughed and kissed Quinn on the cheek. "I know baby," she replied, "but I am still going to miss you."

"Oh, Mommy." said Quinn. "I love you, but I will be having too much fun to miss you." Quinn kissed Mommy just as Daddy came in and grabbed her bag to load it in the car. He would be driving her over to Emily's.

At Emily's, Quinn barely stopped to kiss her father goodbye before she and Emily were off to have fun. For the first few hours, they were so busy having fun, Quinn barely had time to think let alone miss Mommy and Daddy or feel sad. They played games. They danced to CDs. They played with dolls. They watched TV. They just went from one thing to another without stopping.

Finally, it was dinner time, they had Quinn's favorite macaroni and cheese with little hot dogs. For dessert, there was another of Quinn's favorite foods, chocolate ice cream. Afterwards, they took baths and put on their pajamas. Quinn wore red  polka dot pajamas and Emily wore blue flowered ones. They brushed their hair and brushed their teeth. When they were all ready, they lay in the twin beds in Emily's room. Emily's Mommy read them a story. "Please one more." they begged afterward so Emily's Mommy read them one more. "Please one more." they begged again after. This time, Emily's Mommy said no. She turned out the light and left the room shutting the door behind her.

Quinn lay in the dark bed in the dark room and got scared. "Emily." she whispered softly. Emily was exhausted after their long day together and she had fallen asleep right away so she didn't answer. "Emily!" called Quinn a little bit louder. Finally, she sat up in bed and shouted. "Emily!" Emily was a very heavy sleeper and didn't even budge. However, Emily's mother came running.

"Are you okay, Quinn?" asked Emily's mother.

"It's very dark in here." said Quinn quietly.

Emily's mother went and got a night light and plugged it in. "Goodnight, Quinn. Sweet dreams." she said to Quinn as she left the room again and shut the door.

Quinn didn't like to sleep with the door shut. She lay in bed and tried to sleep anyway, but it was no use. "Emily." she whispered softly. Emily continued snoring in her bed. "Emily!" Quinn said a little bit louder. Still, Emily slept. Finally, Quinn sat up in bed and shouted "Emily!" Once again, Emily did not budge. Once again, Emily's mother came running.

"Quinn, honey," said Emily's mother, "Is something the matter?"

"I can't sleep with the door shut." explained Quinn.

"Oh." replied Emily's mother. "Goodnight Quinn." she said. She left the room again, but she did not shut the door.

Quinn lay in bed with the night light on and the door open. It was just like being at her house except it wasn't. She realized it hadn't been the light or the door that had been the problem after all. She missed her own bed. She missed her own house. Most of all, she missed her Mommy and Daddy. "Emily." she whispered yet again.

Emily continued sleeping peacefully in the other bed. "Emily!" she called a little bit louder. Emily still didn't budge. Finally, she said up and shouted "Emily!" Once again, Emily still didn't move, but Quinn started to cry just as Emily's mother entered the room.

She sat down beside Quinn. "What's the matter?" she asked full of concern.

"I miss my Mommy and Daddy." blurted out Quinn as she continued crying.

"Oh. I see." replied Emily's mother. "Do you want to call them?"

Quinn bobbed her head up and down. Yes! Yes Yes! She did want to speak to Mommy and Daddy then maybe she would feel better. However, after she spoke to them, she didn't feel better so Daddy came to pick her up. In the car on the way home, Quinn said to Daddy disappointedly. "I guess. I'm not ready for a sleepover after all."

"That's okay." replied Daddy "You can try again in another few years."

Quinn thought about her own cozy house. She thought about her own soft bed. She thought about her Mommy and Daddy sleeping in the room right next door. She didn't think she would ever want to spend a night away from them. "Maybe in another ten or twenty years. I'll try again." she said.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Lovable Laura

Laura Wells was sweet and lovable from the moment she was born. She was polite. She always listened. She never whined or carried on. She never gave her mother or father a bit of trouble. They were so proud and happy to have her for a daughter. Other parents were jealous of them for having such a good well behaved daughter.

When Laura turned two and  then three she was still as sweet and lovable as ever. There were no terrible twos. There were no horrible threes. Laura's parents were so proud. "We love you Laura." They said. "You are such a good girl."

Other parents said. "We wish our daughter (or son) was more like Laura."

Laura's parents thought. "Our Laura is so sweet. We would love to have another child just like her." So Laura turned four, and her world completely changed. She no longer had Mommy and Daddy all to herself. She had a baby sister named Janey. Laura loved her sister, but she didn't like being a sister. She wanted to have Mommy and Daddy all to herself again.

Good and sweet Laura gradually disappeared. Unhappy and uncooperative Laura appeared in her place. Laura was never polite. She didn't listen.  She whined and carried on all the time. Nobody was jealous of Mommy and Daddy for having a daughter like Laura anymore. "At least our daughter is not like that Laura Wells."" They said in relief.

Laura's parents thought 'She'll grow out of it.' They thought she was just getting used to having a new baby around. They were wrong. As she got older, Laura got worse. Laura turned five and then six and then seven. She threw tantrums. She carried on. "Shouldn't she be growing out of this by now?" her mother asked her father. Her father shook his head. He just didn't know.

One day, Mommy, Laura and Janey were in the store. Laura was having a particularly bad day. She was carrying on about something. Mommy couldn't remember what. All Mommy knew is that it was giving Mommy a headache and making Janey cry.  "Laura, please stop." begged Mommy. "Your upsetting Janey." Mommy scooped Janey up out of the cart. Janey put her arms around Mommy and instantly stopped crying.

Laura actually stopped for a minute. She looked at Mommy with a look of complete sadness. "I knew it." she mumbled under her breath.

Mommy slid Janey back in to the cart. She went over to Laura. "You knew what?" she asked Laura.

"I knew that you loved her better than me."

"What? Of course, I don't!" replied Mommy in surprise and a little bit of anger. How could Laura even think that? "I love you both the same." she replied.  She hugged Laura tightly.

"You loved the good Laura.  You don't love me." replied Laura bursting into tears.

Mommy knelt down beside her. "Now, you listen to me Laura Wells." she said. "There is no good Laura. There is no bad Laura. There is only you. You choose whether to be good or bad. I may not always like your choices, and I may not always like your behavior, but I always love you."

"You do?" asked Laura. "Do you promise?"

"Yes I do." promised Mommy.

"I'm sorry, Mommy." said Laura genuinely sorry. "I'll try to be better. I'll try to be good."

"I'd like that." said Mommy kissing her.

After that, Laura still wasn't always good and she wasn't always sweet, but she tried. She tried to be polite. She tried to listen. She tried not to whine and carry on. She didn't always succeed, but she tried. Sometimes other people were jealous and wanted their children to be just like her and sometimes, they were relieved that their children were not like her. Sometimes, Mommy and Dad were proud of her, and sometimes they weren't, but no matter  what she was always their child, and they always loved her.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Cammie Can Do It

 Cammie Crawford could do a lot of things. She could write her name. She could count to 100. She could run and jump and skip and hop. She didn't think there was anything that she couldn't do. She certainly didn't think there was anything that her big sister, Stacy and her big brother Hank could do that she couldn't do. After all, she was not a baby like her little sister, Missy.

When she saw her brother, Hank carrying the trash out to the curb. She hurried over to help him. "Thanks, Cammie, but I --" he started to say

"I can do it." interrupted Cammie. She grabbed one of the large black garbage bags out of his hand and dropped it on the ground. The contents of the bag spread quickly all over the lawn. "Cammie!" he yelled at her. "Could you please go away, and let me do it?" he knelt down and started picking up the garbage and putting it back in the bag as Cammie sadly scrambled away.

Stacy was in the house watching Missy. "Boy, do you need a change." she said smelling a bad odor coming from the direction of the baby.

"I'll change her." offered Cammi eagerly.

"That's okay." said Stacy.

"I can do it." insisted Cammie. She swooped Missy up in her arms, settled her on the ground in front of herself and proceeded to put a diaper on the baby. No sooner had she finished diapering Missy when the baby crawled away. As she crawled her diaper promptly slipped off. Stacy scooped her up to rediaper her as Cammie sadly snuck out of the room.

She went into the kitchen. She sat at the table with her head down. "I can't do anything." she mumbled to herself.

"What's that?" asked Mommy entering the room. She saw Cammie sitting at the table and looking sad and sat down beside her. "What's wrong?" she asked.

"Oh, mommy!" sighed Cammie throwing herself into her mother's comforting arms. "I can't do anything! I can't take out the garbage! I can't diaper Missy! I  can't do anything that Hank or Stacy does!"

"Well, honey, " replied her Mother. "Hank and Stacy are older than you. You can do a lot of things but you can't necessarily do everything that they do. Just like Missy can't do everything you can do. Some day, you'll be bigger though and you'll be able to do the things they do now."

Cammie instantly brightened. She wasn't happy that she would be able to do what Hank and Stacy did when she got older. Hank and Stacy would always be older than her, and they would always be able to do things she couldn't do. However, she was thrilled that Missy would always be younger and she would always be able to do things Missy couldn't do.

Just at that moment, Missy crawled over to Cammie. Cammie scooped her up in her arms and kissed her on the head. "Don't worry, Missy." she said to her little sister. "Someday, you'll be big like me, and you can do the things I do."

'But I'll always be older, and I always be able to do more than you.' she added to herself happily.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Clarissa Can't

Clarissa Dowd could do many things. She could make her bed. She could tie her shoes. She could set the table. The only problem was she didn't want to do any of them.

"Come on, Clarissa," her sister Victoria urged her in the morning. "Make your bed.We're going to be late!"

Clarissa just stood around looking helpless. "I can't." she said making sad eyes and puffing out her lower lip.

Victoria glared at her and made the bed herself. Was she the only one who was getting a little tired of Clarissa's poor-little-me routine.

"Clarissa, tie your shoes so you don't trip." warned her father as they got ready to leave.

Clarissa frowned and looked sad. "I can't." she said sadly.

"For heaven's sake." replied her father grabbing Clarissa's feet and tying first one shoe and then the other.

At dinner time, Mommy said. "Clarissa, why don't you set the table?"

"I can't." said Clarissa batting her eyelashes and giving her the saddest puppy dog look of all.

Mommy wasn't buying that. "Oh, I think you can." she replied.

"No, I can't." insisted Clarissa leaving the room in a huff.

As she left, Victoria entered the room. "Seriously, Mom," she said angrily banging plates around as she began setting the table in Clarissa's place. "You have to do something about her." she said pointing to Clarissa in the other room. "It's getting to the point where she refuses to do anything."

"Don't worry." replied Mommy with confidence. She knew just what to do.

The next  day was Saturday. In the morning, Clarissa came downstairs in her pajamas and fluffy slippers. She sat down sleepily at the kitchen table. It was strange that Mommy wasn't in the kitchen already cooking. Clarissa didn't smell any food cooking either which was really weird.

Victoria entered the kitchen and poured herself an orange juice. "Can you pour some for me too?" asked Clarissa.

Victoria shook her head. "I can't." she said as she hurried out of the room with her juice.

Mommy entered the room. "Good morning, my sweet." she greeted Clarissa warmly.

"Mommy!" cried Clarissa excitedly. She was getting really hungry. "What are we having for breakfast? I don't smell any food cooking. Are we going out to eat?"

"No." replied her mother. "We are not going out to eat." Clarissa expected Mommy to start cooking breakfast but she just made herself a cup of coffee and sat down at the table with the newspaper.

"Aren't you going to make breakfast?" asked Clarissa near tears. By now, her stomach was rumbling, and she was having huge hunger pains.

"I'm sorry, sweetie. I can't." said Mommy. She took her newspaper and her coffee and left the room as Daddy entered.

"Daddy!" called Clarissa. "Are you going to make breakfast?"

Daddy kissed Clarissa on the cheek. "I can't." he said.  "Are you ready, Victoria?" he asked.

Victoria entered the room with her jacket on. "Sure, Dad," she said. Mommy was right behind her.

"Where are you going?" asked Clarissa.

"I'm taking Victoria to the park." explained her father.

"What about me?" pouted Clarissa. "I want to go to the park too, and what about breakfast?"

"Oh thanks, but I already had a muffin." said Victoria. She and Dad headed for the door.

"You can go to the park if you get dressed." said Mommy.

"I can't." said Clarissa.

"Well, I'm sorry then." said Mommy.

"Can't you get me dressed?" begged Clarissa practically in tears.

"No, I can't." replied Mommy shaking her head.

"Well then, can you at least make me breakfast, please? My tummy hurts."

Mommy shook her head again. "I can't." she said repeated.

Clarissa started to cry. "Why won't anybody help me?" she said.

Mommy took Clarissa on her lap. "Sometimes, you just have to help yourself." she replied gently. "What if I decided I was never going make breakfast again or lunch or dinner or any meal?"

That would be awful. Clarissa shuddered at the the thought of as she felt her tummy rumbling again.

"If you want me to make breakfast and lunch and dinner and do the things I need to do. Then, you are going to have to do things you need to do." explained Mommy.  "Do you understand?" she asked.

Clarissa nodded enthusiastically. "Yes, Mommy." she replied.

"Can you please set the table now, and I'll make us some breakfast."said Mommy.

"Yes, mommy." replied Clarissa with confidence. "I can."

Friday, August 17, 2012

Mean Molly

Nobody messed with Molly McKay She was as tough as a well-done steak. The kids were all afraid of her. They ran away when they saw her coming. Molly was proud to be so tough, but she didn't have any friends. Still, she was proud and happy until the day she was neither proud nor happy any more.

It all started one day when Molly came to play at the playground. As she walked over to the swings, she saw a couple of girls from her class, Elizabeth Judd and Sarah Barrett. Sarah and Elizabeth were laughing, talking, and just generally seemed to be having a really good time. Molly smiled and approached them. She wanted to have a good time too.

As Molly approached, Sarah looked up and her eyes met Molly's. Sarah instantly stopped laughing and having a good time and froze. She looked at Molly with a look of horror. Then, she poked Elizabeth. Elizabeth looked up to yell at Sarah for interrupting her when she was talking. Instead, she also locked eyes with Molly. Elizabeth instantly stopped talking right in the middle of sentence. The two girls slid off the swings and quickly scampered away like little mice.

Both Elizabeth and Sarah had good reason to be afraid of Molly. Many times Molly had pushed them down on the playground at school. Many times Molly had knocked their books out of their arms. Many times, Molly had pushed their papers off their desks.

"Elizabeth! Sarah! Come back now!" Molly demanded in her meanest voice. All that followed was the sound of the ground scrunching underfoot as the two girls hurried further away.

Molly looked to where the sound seemed to be coming from, but she did not see a sign of Elizabeth or Sarah. "Elizabeth! Sarah!" she called a little bit less meanly.

This time she didn't hear or see anything. She looked in a circle all around her, but she did not see a sign of either girl. "Elizabeth! Sarah!" she called a third time. By now, she was sounding desperate instead of mean. "Please come out! I just want to play with you." Tears began to fall silently down her checks but she quickly brushed them away. She had a reputation to maintain.

It was too late, Elizabeth and Sarah had already seen her cry. Elizabeth stepped out from behind some trees. "Be careful, Elizabeth." called a voice behind her. "It could be a trick. Maybe, she is just trying to lure us out so she can beat us up." Elizabeth ignored Sarah's warning and approached Molly. She walked right up to Molly and then, lost her courage a little bit and took a step back.

"Don't go." begged Molly.

"What is it that you want from us?" asked Elizabeth.

"I want to be your friend." replied Molly. "I want to talk with you. I want to laugh with you. I want to have fun like you have fun."

"Our friend?" replied Sarah in surprise stepping out from the trees to join Molly and Elizabeth. "How could you be our friend? You're mean. You push us down and knock our books out of our hands and push our papers off our desks! Everyone is afraid of you."

Suddenly, Molly didn't care about being tough at all. If being tough meant not having any friends and not having any fun, then Molly didn't want to be that way any more. "Please!" she said to the girls. "Please I want to be your friend."

Sarah frowned in disbelief, but Elizabeth said. "If you want to be our friend, you can't be mean to us any more."

"Okay. I won't." promised Molly.

"You won't?" asked Sarah in surprise. She didn't think it could possibly be that easy.

"I won't." Molly promised again.

"Let's give her a chance." suggested Elizabeth.

"Okay." replied Sarah, but she wasn't so sure it was a good idea.

They played together all afternoon. The swung on the swings. They slid down the slide. They dug in the sand. More importantly, they talked and laughed and just generally had a good time, and Molly wasn't mean at all. At the end of the day, Molly said. "Thank you, Elizabeth. Thank you Sarah. I had a really good time today."

"Do you think we could play together again?" asked Molly.

"Sure, as long as you are not mean to us, we would love to be your friend." said Elizabeth and Sarah nodded in agreement.

Molly absolutely beamed with pleasure. She had a friend now. She had a real honest to goodness friend. In fact, she had two of them.

From that day on, she was never mean again at least not to Sarah and Elizabeth.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

First Grade Blues

Amanda Bryson loved preschool. She was crazy about kindergarten.  She did not at all want to go to first grade. "Do I have to go to first grade?" she asked her Dad.

"You'll  love first grade." her Dad promised. Amanda frowned at him. She didn't think so.

Her Mom told her, "You sure are a big girl to be going to school all day."

Amanda looked as though she were going to cry."But, won't you miss me, mommy?" she asked sadly.
"Well, of course, I'll miss you, but you'll come home every day." her Mom assured her.

"That's right I will." replied Amanda brightening a little.

Over all, Amanda didn't feel better though. Mommy found her a little while later lying on the couch chewing on her favorite stuffed bear's ear.  "Amanda, you'll hurt Wally." teased Mom gently taking the brown fluffy stuffed bear out of Amanda's mouth and picking it up. Despite her lighthearted tone, she was worried about her daughter. Amanda hadn't chewed on her toys since she was 2 or 3.

"Don't worry." Her father assured her mother when she worriedly told him about Amanda chewing on her toys again.  "She's just nervous about first grade."

"I know she is." replied her mother. "But I wish there was some way I could help her."

Her father knew just what to do. "Amanda," he told her as he held her in his lap. "You're worried about first grade, aren't you?" Amanda nodded and hugged him tightly. "Don't worry." he said. "You are going to love first grade."

"How do you know?" asked Amanda.

"I know." replied her father.

"But how do you know?" asked Amanda again.

"I'm sure you will like first grade. Besides, if you don't like it, you won't have to go back." he added.

Amanda smiled and felt genuinely happy for the first time in a long time.

A few days later, Mommy put Amanda on the big yellow school bus in the morning. Amanda felt nervous again. She was too nervous to even be excited about wearing her new blue and white striped dress and her new blue shoes and carrying her new Doc McStuffins backpack. On the bus, she kept telling herself. 'If I don't like it, I don't have to back. If I don't like it, I don't have to go back.'

That afternoon, Mommy waited eagerly for Amanda at the bus stop after school. Amanda was the first one off the bus. She jumped happily into her Mother's waiting arms. "Oh, Mommy." she said excitedly."First grade is the best year ever! I made friends!  I love my teacher, Mrs. West, and we made a cool art project!"

"I'm so glad you had a good time, sweetheart." said Mommy. "I knew you would." However,  even though Mommy knew Amanda would have a good time in first grade, she didn't know she would love it so much right away.  "What would you have done if she came back to you and said she wanted to stop going to first grade because you said she didn't have to go if she didn't like it?" she asked Amanda's father.

"I don't know." her father admitted. "I hadn't thought about that."

Monday, August 13, 2012

Call Me Catelyn

Catelyn Pierce loved her name. She thought Catelyn  was the most beautiful name in the world. She never got tired of hearing it. The only problem was she hardly ever did. Hardly anybody ever called her Catelyn.

Her mother called her Cay. As in, "Cay, honey, did you do your homework?" as she asked every afternoon as she made dinner.

"My name is Catelyn!" Catelyn would say.

Her mother would smiled and  kiss her on the head and tell her to go finish her homework.

Her mother continued to call her Cay.

Her father called her Catie. As in, "Hello, Catie, did you have a nice day?" as he called out to Catelyn every day as he walked in the house after work.

"My name is Catelyn!" Catelyn would state.

Her Dad would kiss her. "I know what your name is." he would say  with a huge smile. "I named you."

Her father continued to call her Catie.

Her sister, Caroline, called her Lynn. As in, "You stay out of my stuff, Lynn!"

"My name is Catelyn!" Catelyn would insist.

Her sister would look at her as though Catelyn were a little bug on the bottom of her shoe and slam the bedroom door.

Her sister continued to call her Lynn.

Her brother, Chris called her, Lynnie. As in, "Hey, Lynnie, what's up?"

"My name is Catelyn!" Catelyn would yell.

Her brother would smile and ruffle her hair and go off to play some sport with his friends.

Her brother continued to call her Lynnie.

Her grandfather called her Caroline. As in, "Caroline, can you fetch me my slippers? My feet are a bit cold."

"My name is Catelyn!" Catelyn would remind him.

Her grandfather would continue to call her Caroline.

Finally, Catelyn  had had enough. That night, she stood up at the dinner table. "My name is Catelyn!" she yelled. "My name is not Cay! My name is not Catie!  My name is not Lynn! My name is not Lynnie! My name is especially not Caroline! My name is Catelyn!"

Her family said in stunned silence. "Well, okay." her father replied finally. "If you feel that strongly about it, we'll call you Catelyn from now on."

Her mother nodded in agreement. "Sure, we will." she agreed. She gave a look to Caroline and Chris, and they nodded in agreement as well. Her grandfather nodded too although he had no idea what they were talking about.

From that day on, everyone in the family called her Catelyn. Not Cay. Not Catie. Not Lynn. Not Lynnie. Just Catelyn. Everyone called her Catelyn except for her grandfather who continued to call her Caroline or Chris or whatever name came to his mind at the time.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Just Julie

Today's Story is by Melia!

Julie Jones loved her name. She thought it was the most beautiful name in the world. But that didn't matter because nobody called her Julie. Everybody thought it was just a nickname. "Juliet come say hello to the class." exclaimed her teacher.

"It's just Julie." Julie explained in a whisper.

"Julianne come help me with my bags." called Aunt Martha.

"It's just Julie." Julie explained quietly.

"Julianna come help me find the  cat." demanded Uncle Fred.

"It's just Julie." Julie explained a little louder but with an inside voice.

"Hi Julietta, wanna' come to my house?" asked her friend Jane.

"It's just Julie." explained Julie a little loudly.

"Julia, will you please play with me?" whined her cousin Liz.

"It's  just Julie!" Julie explained in an outside voice."
"Clean your room please Jules." commanded Mrs. Jones.

"It's just Julie!" screamed Julie. "Why did you name me that if no one ever calls me Julie!" and she ran crying to her room.

Mrs. Jones ran after her daughter.
"I'm changing my name to the most common name people call me." Julie decided..

"Oh, baby don't do that. You have a lovely name." soothed Mrs. Jones.

"Then why am I the only one that uses it?" complained Julie.

  "Julie why didn't you just tell me you wanted to be called Julie?" cooed Mrs. Jones, as she stroked her daughter's hair.

"I did, only a thousand times!" shouted Julie angrily.

"I'm sorry, baby. I'll try to remember." promised Mrs. Jones.

The Jones girls hugged, and Julie stated, "Thank you mom."

After that people usually called her Julie and if not, she didn't mind as much because she loved her name and Mrs. Jones loved her name. And that was all that matters.

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Bella and the Baby Bird

 Today's Story is by Melia

Bella Collins was a little girl who lived with her Nanny and Papa. One day Bella was playing  in the garden, when she heard a faint noise coming from the bushes. Bella went over to see what the noise was and she found a baby bird. Bella took the baby bird in the house to show to Nanny. Nanny was a vet. She told Bella the baby bird probably fell out of  it's nest. Bella went to show Papa. Papa was also a vet. He told Bella the bird broke it's wing. Bella found an empty shoe box, and laid out a blanket made for a doll in the box. Then she put in some grass and twigs, and last she put in birdseed. Then she cuddled the bird and put it in the box. Bella kept the bird for a month, then she took the bird in her hands outside. The bird didn't budge. Bella brought the bird back inside and told Nanny. Nanny said Bella could keep it for a pet. Papa told her it was a she. Papa said that the bird was loyal because she did not leave. She stayed with Bella. So Bella named the bird Loyal. Because Loyal was Bella's loyal companion. And Bella kept her for a very long time.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Hannah Wants To Help

Hannah Jordan was a very helpful girl. She liked to help her mother. She liked to help her father. She liked to help her Grandma. She liked to help everyone, but only when she wanted to help. That was the problem.

When her mother was trying to organize and file a stack of papers. There was Hannah. "Where does this go, mommy?" she asked shoving a piece of paper under her mother's nose. "How about this one?" she asked waving another one in her mother's face. She really wasn't helping at all. Her constant interruptions, just distracted her mother so her mother couldn't get anything done.

"Hannah, please go and play!" begged Mommy finally.

Hannah didn't really want to leave. She wanted to help. Mommy insisted so finally Hannah agreed to leave her alone. "If you're sure you don't need me." she  said to Mommy creeping slowly out  of the room in case Mommy changed her mind and needed Hannah after all.

"I'll be fine really." Mommy assured her as she turned her attention back to her stack of papers.

Yet when they walked in the door and Mommy's arms were filled with packages, Hannah disappeared up the stairs the moment, they walked in the door. "Hannah! Hannah!" called Mommy trying to carry all the packages into the kitchen and put them on the table without dropping them. "Hannah, please come and help me!" Still Hannah was no where to be found. The phone started ringing and half the packages dropped to the floor before the loud crash finally brought Hannah back to the kitchen to help.

When Daddy was working with tools, Hannah was there to help. "What does this tool do?" she asked pointing to a tool. "What does that one do?" she asked picking up another and swinging it in the air.

"Put that down before, you get hurt." said Daddy angrily.

"I was only trying to help." said Hannah just about bursting into tears.

"I know honey bun." Daddy said much more sweetly. "But I've gotten this covered. Why don't you go see what Mommy is doing."

"Okay, Daddy." replied Hannah feeling a little bit rejected as she left the room.

Yet, when Daddy was cleaning out the garage and he needed Hannah to help by putting away her outside toys, she was no where around. "Hannah! Hannah!" he called, but Hannah didn't answer. Hannah was too busy playing.

When she went to Grandma's house, and Grandma was trying to cook breakfast, there was Hannah eager to help. "Can I crack an egg?" she asked excitedly grabbing one and  starting to squeeze it. Grandma quickly pried it out of her hand before she squashed it all over the counter. "I'll make the toast then." said Hannah. She took a hand full of bread and proceeded to drop it all over the floor.

"Sit down, Hannah, please." insisted Grandma.

"Okay, Grandma." said Hannah disappointedly. She really wanted to help.

Yet, when Grandma was doing the laundry and she needed Hannah to help her pick up the clothes that had fallen on the floor, Hannah was not there. "Hannah, Hannah!" called Grandma clutching her aching back. "Please come and help, Grandma." Hannah was so busy watching TV that she didn't even hear Grandma calling.

"What's wrong?" asked Daddy upon finding Hannah curled up on the couch with her head buried in a pillow.

"Oh, Daddy. " replied Hannah lifting her tear stained face off the pillow. "Why can't I help? Nobody ever lets me help." She threw herself into Daddy's arms.

Daddy hugged her tightly. "Oh, honey bun." he said gently. "Helping is not about helping when you want to help. Helping is about helping when somebody needs help."

"But how do I know when someone needs help?" she asked worriedly.

"Just ask." Daddy replied.

"Oh." said Hannah thoughtfully, and from then on she always tried to remember to ask before she helped.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Dumb Dolly and Smart Sabrina

Today's Story is by Melia

Sabrina Speller was a nine year old girl.  She was so smart that she was in a world record book. She had tons of friends. Every girl or boy she knew had asked her for help sometime or another. Dolly Dover was also a nine year old girl. She wore dark blue glasses. She was not very smart. She never got anything higher than a D,  in school. She only had one friend. That friend was Sabrina. Actually they were best friends. They had known each other since they're mothers met in the hospital when their daughters were born.

"Sabrina time for school." called Mommy.

"Coming." answered Sabrina.

Ding dong! "I'll get it!" shouted Sabrina. She raced down the rough, beige staircase.

"Hey.What's up?" questioned Dolly.

"Hello." replied Sabrina. Then they walked to the bus stop together. That day in school there was a big test called the NJ ASK.  Sabrina's desk was right next to Dolly's. Dolly hated huge tests. She knew she hadn't done good in school and she would repeat the year if she did bad.

'Sabrina's the smartest person I've ever met in all nine years of my life. If I just  copy her test I'll ace it and pass. No that's wrong. But then again, I can't fail this test. Sabrina won't know. Besides she wants to be in my class. So I can't fall behind.' Dolly thought.

Meanwhile, Sabrina was focusing on her test making sure she did good. Everyone envied her smartness, but she wasn't perfect. She  struggled sometimes just like everyone else. She just thought carefully about every possibility. And she studied an hour every day. Sabrina knew that Dolly was going to do super on her test. But Dolly didn't. Dolly failed. While Sabrina was working on a story for the test, Dolly was looking at Sabrina's paper! She had gone through with cheating. But Dolly wasn't wearing her glasses. When she tried to see she could only make out some of the words. When Mrs. Alzheimer was looking over her students shoulder's at their papers she noticed Dolly's story didn't make sense. But the words seemed like Sabrina's. "Sabrina, Dolly please come out in the  hall with me for a minute." Mrs. Alzheimer whispered just loud enough for the two of them to hear.

"Yes Mrs Alzheimer." asked Sabrina.

Dolly was very nervous. "I noticed your stories were very similar.  Anything to confess girls."

Sabrina shot Dolly a confused expression. Dolly blushed.  "Fine you know I hate to do this, but if know one's going to talk I'm throwing away both your tests and you'll both get zeroes!" Mrs. Alzheimer whisper yelled.

Sabrina had never been in trouble before in her life, and Mrs. Alzheimer was so nice. Well, Dolly was torn she couldn't repeat the year, but she couldn't stand to see her best friend so upset. Sabrina had gotten A+'s her whole life. "I cheated so I wouldn't have to repeat the year." Dolly blurted. She blushed even harder.

Sabrina looked shocked and angry. "I should have known. Sabrina I'm sorry I ever doubted you. Go back to your test,  ten extra minutes." Mrs. Alzheimer exclaimed. I hope your happy because now your immediately repeating the year and staying after school to do the test over."

After that Sabrina aced the test and went into fourth grade. While Dolly did over third grade. The two never spoke again.