Monday, July 24, 2017

Adorable Adela

Octavia Wyatt had a new baby sister, and she wasn't happy about it. Nobody had asked her before the baby was born if she would mind having a younger sibling - she did, in fact, mind.  She minded very much.

Before the baby came, Octavia was the cute little one. She was the one everyone came to see and fussed over. Now, it was Adela, her baby sister. 

"Oh, she's so adorable." gushed the latest visitor to arrive at their house and peek into the sleeping baby Adela's crib. 

Octavia put her finger in her mouth as if she were about to gag. Adorable? What was so adorable about a tiny baby who could hardly do anything but sleep and go to the bathroom. Meanwhile, she, Octavia could do all sorts of exciting things like count and spell and do both a front and a back somersault.

"Do you want to hear me count to ten?" she asked her mother. 

"Later." Mommy said with a smile. "I have to feed Adela."

"Do you want to hear me spell my name?" she asked her father.

"I can't right now." he replied. "I have to go to the store to  get Adela more diapers. Do you want to come?"

Octavia frowned and shook her head no. She didn't want to do anything for that stupid sister of hers. 

Grandma arrived and Octavia immediately brightened. Surely, Grandma would want to spend time with Octavia. She and Grandma had always been close. "Hi Grandma." she greeted her grandmother warmly. "Do you want to see me do a front or a back somersault?"

Grandma smiled. "I have to see baby Adela first."  she replied.  She hurried off into Adela's room, 

Octavia slumped to the ground dejectedly. She closed her eyes for a minute and opened them to see a figure looming over her. It was her older cousin, Marie. "Hi." said Marie sitting down beside her.

"Aren't you looking for Adela's room?" asked Octavia pointing towards it. 

Marie shook her head no.

"Don't you want to see adorable Adela?" asked Octavia wrinkling up her nose at the mere mention of her baby sister's name.

Marie shook her head no again. "I came to see you." she replied. "I wanted to tell you I know how you feel."

Octavia didn't think so. She just rolled her eyes at her cousin.

"I really do." replied Marie sincerely. "You see I'm an older sister too. Only in my case, it was adorable Essie. It was Essie everyone came to see and Essie everyone fussed over. I felt really left out."

Octavia nodded vigorously. She knew just how Marie felt, lonely and sad and like she didn't matter. "What did you do?" she asked eagerly. 

"Nothing." replied Marie. "What could I do? I was just a kid."

Octavia frowned again. She thought Marie's advice was going to be helpful but she guessed not. She started to turn away from her cousin.

However, Marie continued talking. "Do you know what happened?" she asked. "Essie got older." she continued after Octavia shook her head no. "After a while, she wasn't so adorable and so new anymore. She was just another kid like me. After all, you can't be a new baby forever."

Octavia smiled. It was her first genuine smile in a long time. She thanked her cousin and went off to see her baby sister.

"Can I see the baby?" she asked entering her Mom's room. 

Grandma was about to say no because the baby was sleeping in her bassinet but Mom was so happy that Octavia finally wanted to see her baby sister that she practically had tears in eyes. "Sure, you can see your baby sister. " she replied. "Just be really quiet though. Adela's sleeping." 

Octavia quietly tiptoed over to the baby's bassinet and peeked in. Then, when Mommy and Grandma looked away for a minute. She leaned in and whispered. "Don't get used to it. You're not going to be adorable forever. You know."

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Hazel's Horse

Today's story is not only for my daughter but by my daughter.

Hazel Prince loved horses. She had all kinds of books about horses. Hazel loved learning all different facts about horses and ponies. One day, when Hazel was in her room she thought of the best idea ever, she would ask her parents for a pet horse. She went into her parents room to find Daddy lying down on the bed reading a book. "Daddy, can I get a pet horse please?" Hazel asked hopefully as she walked over to Daddy.

"Sure, honey." Daddy replied barely listening to what Hazel was asking. He missed the part about pet horse.

Later that day, Hazel was sitting in the kitchen with a paper and a pen. "Mommy, which name do you like best for a horse, Buttercup, Sweetie, Snickerdoddle or Butterscotch?" Hazel asked looking up from her paper.

"I think I like Butterscotch best." Mommy replied not quite understanding why Hazel needed a name for a horse.

"Okay. Thanks, Mommy." Hazel said picking up her paper and leaving the room. She went into the living room to find her little sister Caroline sitting on the couch watching My Little Pony on the TV. "Hey, Caroline! Guess what!" Hazel said sitting beside her little sister.

"What?" Caroline asked looking up at her sister and away from the TV screen.

"I'm going to get a pet horse. And, I am going to name it Butterscotch." Hazel stated happily. Upon hearing this, Caroline's jaw dropped instantly.

"Mommy and Daddy are getting you a horse? They won't even let me get Puppy!" Caroline stated angrily glaring at Hazel. "This is no fair!"

Hazel went into her room. She went straight to her desk which had her computer on top. She turned on the computer and looked up what to get for a horse. Hazel took a pencil and paper out of her desk drawer and wrote down all the things she would need for her horse. Then, she went onto different pet store websites and looked for the things she needed. "The things to wash Butterscotch are cheaper to get at Pet Market, then at Furry Friends." Hazel said to herself. She needed to find the cheapest way to get all the things she would need. After she finished with that, she looked up different places where she could get Butterscotch. Hazel decided she wanted a little white horse that's name was Snowflake. Although of course when Hazel got her, she was still going to change her name to Butterscotch.

"Hazel, Caroline, it's time for dinner!" Mommy called from downstairs.

"Mommy, how come Hazel can get a horse, but I can't get a puppy?" Caroline asked as she sat down at the diner table.

"Hazel's getting a horse? Mommy asked looking very confused.

"Yes. Daddy said I that I can get one." Hazel explained. Everyone's eyes turned to Daddy.

"I didn't know you wanted a real horse I thought you wanted a stuffed horse. I'm sorry Pumpkin. What if instead of getting you a horse, Hazel, and you a puppy, Caroline, we get you smaller pet to share like a Bunny?" He looked over at Mommy to make sure that she was okay with that idea. She smiled back at him. "How does that sound?" Daddy asked looking back at Caroline and Hazel. Hazel and Caroline looked at each other and then looked back at Daddy.

"Okay." The two girls said at the same time. Hazel might not have gotten a horse, but at least she was getting a pet. Maybe someday she would finally get a horse.

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Silly Saturday

Every Saturday Layna's family had what they called Silly Saturday. Where they would have a lot of fun and be silly all day. Her family included her Mom. Her dad. Her little sister Crystal who was seven years old, and was five years younger than Layna. Lastly Layna had a two year old sister named Morgan , who was ten years younger than her. All of them loved Silly Saturdays and waited each week for the day to finally arrive, but this week was different. Layna's best friend Ellen was coming over for a sleepover on Saturday. Ellen was surely going to think that Layna was strange if she saw what Silly Saturdays were like. Layna decided to ask her mom if they could skip Silly Saturday this week. She went to her parents room, but her mom wasn't there. Then she went to Morgan's room. Her mom was in there. She was lying in Morgan's bed with her. It was time for Morgan's nap. She was reading Morgan a story to help her fall a sleep. "Mom since Ellen is coming to sleepover on Saturday can we maybe skip Silly Saturday this week?" Layna asked hopefully. 

When hearing the words skip Silly Saturday Morgan burst into tears. She loved Silly Saturdays and since she was only two they always made her really happy.

"Sorry Honey, but your it makes your little sisters very happy, and without it they will be really sad. "

"But if Ellen sees Silly Saturdays she will think I'm crazy. She will never want to be my friend then." Layna wined.

"If she is  really your friend she will like you for who you are not for what you do on Saturdays." Mommy replied going back to reading Morgan a story.

Layna could tell Mommy was done with that conversation. Even though she didn't believe what mommy had just sad she left the room. She went back to her room. "Mom doesn't even care how I feel about Silly Saturdays, she only cares what Crystal and Morgan think." Layna thought angrily to herself. After a lot thinking Lanya decided to look passed Silly Saturday and just look forward to Ellen coming for a sleepover. Once Layna decided to look passed Silly Saturdays she couldn't wait for the day to arrive.

Finally after a lot of waiting Saturday arrived. Usually everybody had matching wacky clothes for Silly Saturday, but today there was no way Layna was going to dress wacky. Layna picked out her pretty white dress with little sunflowers on it. The family also usually did wacky hair styles for Silly Saturday, well all except Daddy who didn't have enough hair to style. Although today Lanya carefully parted her hair and put it into two perfect braids. Unfortunately for Lanya the rest of the family was still dressed in there Silly Saturday outfits. Mommy and Daddy were sitting on the couch with Crystal, and Mommy had Morgan in her lap. They were playing the first game of Silly Saturday. It was the Funny Face game. In the game they took turns making funny faces. Just then the doorbell rang. "I'll get it!" Layna called out as she ran for the door.

"Hey Laney."  Ellen said as she looked at Lanya who had just opened the door.

"Hey Ellen, come on in." Lanya welcomed as she lead Ellen into the house. Ellen had been to Layna's house before just not for a sleepover and not on a Saturday. Ellen walked straight to the living room to see the Funny Face game. Layna quickly pulled Ellen out of the room and dragged her away. "Let's go in my room." Layna suggested walking towards the stairs. Ellen agreed and the two went upstairs to Layna's room. While they were in Layna's room they did all kinds of things. Such as playing games although normal games not Silly Saturday games.

"Layna, Ellen. It's time for lunch." Mommy called from down stairs. The two girls raced down the stairs and into the kitchen.

"I won the race." Layna announced as her and Ellen reached the kitchen. They both started to laugh. For lunch they were having spaghettios. Morgan scooped her bowl of spaghettios in her hands and dumped it on top of her head. On most days Mommy would have scolded Morgan, but since it was Silly Saturday she just laughed. After a minute of it sinking in Morgan started to cry because the spaghettios were burning her head and face. When Morgan started to cry Mommy immediately picked Morgan up in her arms.

"I'm going to take Morgan to have a bath, so she cool off." Mommy explained as she carried Morgan off. The whole time Layna had her head in her hands. She was so embarrassed. After that the day did not get much better for Layna. It seamed like every minute Layna's family would find another way to embarrass her.

Finally it was time for Layna and Ellen to go to bed. The two of them lay down on the two couches in the Living room. "I am so sorry about my family. Every Saturday is what they call "Silly Saturday" where the act silly all day. I understand if you think I am weird and don't want to be my best friend anymore. Or if you don't even want to be my friend at all." Layna said sadly

"There's no need to apologize. Your family is really cool and funny. My parents never spend anytime with me and I don't even have any siblings. Of course I still want to be your best friend." Ellen assured Layna.

"Really." Layna asked.

"Really." Ellen replied. From then on Layna always enjoyed Silly Saturdays as she had before, and  Layna was never afraid to be herself. Or at least she tried not to be.

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Overextended Emery

Emery Overton was a nice girl. The problem was she was too nice. She especially loved to be helpful to others. Whenever anybody asked her to do anything Emery always agreed.

One Saturday morning, when Emery woke up and was sitting in her bed, her father poked his head in on his way downstairs. "Good morning." he greeted her cheerfully. "I'm going to visit Grandma today. Do you want to come?"

"Sure." replied Emery enthusiastically. Emery adored her grandmother. They were very close. Her grandmother had recently been moved into a nursing home.

When Dad went downstairs, Emery got out of bed, and went to her closet to pick out something to wear. Her older sister, Iris burst into her room and started talking as if they'd already been having a conversation. "I thought we'd start with the mall and then go to some of the smaller stores after if necessary.'" she announced.

"Huh?" said Emery in confusion.

"Aren't you coming with me to pick out a prom dress?" asked Iris.

"Oh yeah." replied Emery excitedly. She just loved fancy dresses. Besides, she appreciated any time her older sister actually wanted to spend time with her which wasn't often.

"I'm going to go take a shower. I'll let you know when we are ready to go, okay?" declared Iris.

Emery nodded. She turned back to her closet. Just after she had picked out an outfit and gotten dressed, her mother stepped into her room. "Don't forget we are going to bake those cupcakes for the bake sale today." she reminded Emery.

"Okay." replied Emery. She had forgotten she had volunteered her mother to bake cupcakes for the fundraiser they were having at school. Her mouth watered just think of the delicious cupcakes they would make. Her mother was a great baker. Hopefully, she would let them make a few extra for home as well.

Emery brushed her teeth. Just as she finished, she heard the doorbell ring loudly from downstairs. 'I wonder who that can be?' she thought.

"Emery! Arden is here!" called Mom from downstairs answering Emery's question. Arden Best was Emery's best friend. They had been inseparable since they were babies.

"Hi, Arden." Emery greeted her friend warmly as she came down the stairs.

"Hi, Em." replied Arden. "I'm so grateful to you for doing this," she gushed as she hurried into the house and dropped her math text book on the table and opened it up. "My Mom and Dad will make me quit cheerleading if I don't get my math grade up."

"Sure. No problem." replied Emery suddenly remembering she had promised to tutor Arden. Emery had always been good at math. It came easy to her. Unfortunately, not so much for Arden, who always struggled with the subject.

Emery sat down at the table next to Arden. Just as they were about to get started her father entered the room. "Are you ready to go to Grandma's? " he asked.

Before Emery could reply, Iris burst into the room." "Let's get going!" she insisted impatiently However, before Emery could move or reply their mother entered the room.

"I am going to preset the oven so we can get started on those cupcakes." Mom told Emery.

"I thought you were going with me to visit Grandma." said Dad in confusion.

"I thought you were going shopping with me." hissed Iris angrily.

"I thought we were going to bake the cupcakes today." declared Mom. "When you volunteered me you promised you would help."

"You promised you would help me with my math today!" whined Arden.

"Oops." replied Emery as a great big blush of embarrassment spread across her face. She had to learn to stop saying yes to everything.

Sunday, July 16, 2017

When You're Older

Anastasia Washburn had two older sisters Camry and Gretel. Camry and Gretel were twelve year old twins. They were always getting to do cool things. Anastasia was only six and was too young to do anything. She didn't think it was fair that she never got to do anything cool.

"Let's go to the park." Mommy suggested one day. This was something the three girls could agree on. "We can't go to the park we usually go to. There is work being done. We will have to go to the next closest park." Mommy stated as the four of them climbed into the car.

When they got to the park the girls happily jumped out of the car. The park they went to had two sections. The big kid section and the little kid section. Camry and Gretel immediately ran over to the big kid part, and Anastasia ran after them. "Anastasia get back here." Mommy screamed running after Anastasia. "You're too young for the big kid part. You can play there when you're older."

Anastasia didn't think this was fair, but she knew there was no use arguing. She hung her head down and slowly walked to the other side of the park. When Camry and Gretel were done playing, they all got back in the car.

"Before we go home, we need to stop by the store to pick up a few things."" Mommy explained as she buckled her seat belt.

"Can we get these books?" Camry and Gretel asked holding up two chapter books that they had found at the store.

"Sure." Mommy replied looking for the stuff she needed to get.

"Can I get this book?" Anastasia inquired holding up a different chapter book then her sisters had picked out.

"No sweetie. You are too little for chapter books. You can read them when you are older. Why don't you get this book instead?" Mommy said holding up a picture book.

"No thank you." Anastasia answered in disgust.

When they got home, Daddy was in the backyard building the girls a tree house. "Camry, Gretel come help me. "

"Okay." The two yelled running over to Daddy.

"Can I help too?" Anastasia asked hopefully.

"I'm sorry princess you are too little you could get hurt. You can help me build things when you're older." Daddy replied as he continued building.

Anastasia went to her room. She sat on her bed and picked up her favorite stuffed animal. It was a bear named Teddy. "I'm too young to do anything." she said to the bear. "I can't do anything. When am I going to be as old as Camry and Gretel? It's not fair!" Anastasia continued. Anastasia left her room and went downstairs to the kitchen.

In the kitchen, Mommy was making eggs for lunch. "Mommy can I help you make the eggs?" Anastasia inquired walking over to her.

"Sorry Anastasia, but you could burn yourself. You're to young to use the stove. You can use the stove when you're older."

"Another thing, I'm to young for." Anastasia thought to herself as she left the kitchen to go find something to do.

With the eggs, they were having toast. "I'll butter the toast." Anastasia offered.

"Honey you're too little to use a knife. You can use a knife when you're older." Daddy said as he started to butter the toast himself.

"Anastasia! Anastasia! Come here!" Mommy called later that day. Anastasia didn't come.

Anastasia was in her room playing with her toys. "She must be calling me by accident. She probably wants Camry or Gretel for something." Anastasia thought going back to playing.

"Anastasia!Anastasia!" Mommy called again. Anastasia still didn't come down. Mommy decided to go see what Anastasia was doing and why she wasn't coming downstairs. When she got to Anastasia's room, she saw her playing on the ground. "Why didn't you come down?" Mommy asked. "I was going to ask you if you wanted to go to this new water park."

Anastasia loved water parks, but she still didn't think Mommy really wanted her. "Are you sure you meant to ask me and not Camry or Gretel?"Anastasia asked.

"If I meant to ask Camry or Gretel, I would have. I asked you because I meant to ask you." Mommy assured her. "Plus at this water park you have to be four to ten. Which means they are too old anyway. So would you like to go?" Mommy asked again.

"Yes!" Anastasia said vigorously shacking her head. Maybe sometimes it was better to be little.

Friday, July 14, 2017

What's That Smell?

Felice McGill was sitting in her living room watching her favorite cartoon when she noticed a horrible smell. "What is that awful smell?" she asked holding her nose. She looked around but didn't notice anything that could be giving off such a horrible smell.

Just then her baby sister, Faye crawled by. 'Of course' thought Felice. 'It must be dirty diaper I'm smelling!' Out loud to her sister, she said. "No offense, Faye but you stink!" Faye just smiled back at her big sister. She was just happy to have some attention. Felice quickly scooped up the baby and holding her at arms length went looking for their mother. "Mom! Mom!" she shouted at the top of her lungs.

"What is all the screaming about?" asked Mom in an annoyed voice entering the room after about five minutes of Felice's yelling. "I was in the middle of sorting the laundry."

"She needs a change." insisted Felice quickly depositing the baby in Mom's arms.

Mom took the baby and sniffed her bottom. "Are you sure?" she asked Felice doubtingly. "She doesn't smell like she needs change."

"Are you kidding?" asked Felice in disbelief. "She stinks."

Mom took out a changing mat from the diaper bag that was lying on the table. She spread it out on the floor and put the baby on it and began changing her diaper. As soon as she had the baby's diaper off, she looked up and gave Felice an angry look. "Her diaper's not even wet." she said in a very annoyed voice. Mom quickly put the baby's diaper back on and left the room taking the baby with her.

Felice sniffed. It still smelled terrible. If it wasn't baby Faye, what could it be? Just then she noticed her older brother, Dan sitting at the kitchen table devouring a piece of cake.

'Aha!' thought Felice.  'That must be what the awful smell is. It must be Dan.' She stormed into the kitchen. "You stink!" she said pointing to her brother accusingly.

"What?!" he exclaimed jumping up startled. He'd been busy daydreaming about his latest hot crush, and he hadn't heard Felice come in.

"Did you have football practice today" asked Felice.

"Yeah, what about it?" he asked with annoyance. What business was it of hers anyway? He didn't appreciate his little sister giving him the third degree.

"Did you ever hear of showering?" asked Felice as if she were introducing a foreign concept.

"For your information, I did shower." he replied angrily and went back to eating his cake.

Felice leaned in real close and sniffed her brother. He did smell clean. The stink definitely wasn't coming from him.

Dan pushed her away. "Get away from me, you little freak." he said angrily.

Just then the sound of another angry voice filled the air. This time it was Mom's, and it was coming from the living room. "Get in here right now, Felice." she called insistently.

Felice quickly hurried to the sound of her mother's voice. "What's the matter, Mom?" she asked calmly entering the living room.

"What this?" asked Mom accusingly shoving an empty cartoon of milk under Felice's nose.

That was it! That was were that awful smell was coming from.

"Didn't I tell you to throw this out yesterday?" asked Mom

Felice nodded suddenly remembering she had been on her way to throw out the empty container of milk when she heard the sound of her favorite singer's voice  coming from the living room TV, and she forgot all about it. The mystery of the awful smell was solved. Felice smiled with satisfaction.

Mom, on the other hand, was still not so please. "Throw it out now!" she demanded handing Felice the empty container.

"Okay, okay." said Felice heading for the garbage can in the garage.

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Hayden's Hero

This story is by Melia.

Hayden Massey was ten years old. She had just started fifth grade and her first assignment of the year was to write a report about her favorite hero. "Well that should be easy; you love superheroes! Which one are you going to choose?" asked her mother.

"I'm not sure yet," Hayden replied honestly.

She walked into room where images of Batman, Superman, Iron Man, Spider-man, and the Flash lined the walls. There were posters, action figures, DVDs, and just about any other type of merchandise imaginable  for dozens of superheroes. Hayden gazed around the room, looking over every one of them to find inspiration, but she still couldn't seem to figure which one was the best.

That night, she was sitting on the couch in her living room reading a book when her sister, Grace, entered. "Hey," she said. "I heard about your essay. Have you decided which hero you're going to write about?"

Hayden sighed. "Not yet. I like so many superheroes but I don't think any of them are my favorite."

"Well did your teacher actually say it had to be a 'superhero'?" Grace asked, sitting down beside her sister.

Hayden thought about it. "No, I guess not. But isn't that the only kind of hero there is?"

"Of course not!" Grace exclaimed. "A hero is somebody you look up to. Somebody who inspires you to work harder, be kinder, and believe in yourself. It can be a superhero, but it could just as easily be someone real. You just have to think about who it is that makes you want to be the best version of yourself that you can be."

"Wow, I never thought about it that way," Hayden said, and suddenly she knew exactly what to write. "Thanks, Grace!" she called out as she ran into her room.

As soon as she sat down at her desk and pulled out a sheet of paper, the words began flowing right out of her. It was the easiest paper she had ever had to write. Within twenty minutes, she had finished it and tucked it carefully into her backpack to hand in the next day.

A few days later, Hayden excitedly rushed home from the bus stop, clutching her report in her hand. "Mom, come here!" she yelled as soon as she stepped through the front door.

"What is it? Is something wrong?" her mom asked, hurrying over to her daughter.

"I got an A+ on my hero essay!" she squealed, jumping up and down.

"That's wonderful! Which hero did you end up writing about?"

Hayden smiled. "I wrote about someone who makes me want to work harder, be kinder, and believe in myself. The most inspirational hero I know. You," she declared.

Tears came to her mother's eyes as she looked upon her daughter feeling prouder and more honored than she had ever felt before. "Thank you so much, honey. And you know what?"

"What?" Hayden asked.

"You're my hero, too."

Hayden hugged her mom tightly. "I love you, mom. No matter how cool or powerful superheroes may be, you'll also be my favorite hero."

Monday, July 10, 2017

Bree's Brilliant Plan

Bree Jubert was so sick of school. She couldn't stand another day of it. Winter and Spring break had both already passed, and she couldn't wait for summer. Bree racked her brains trying to think of way she could get out of going to school. Then, she sighed unhappily. The only way her mother was going to let her get out of going to school was if she was sick.

"That's it!" Bree exclaimed excitedly.  All she had to do was convince her mother she was sick, and then her mother would let her stay home. It was a brilliant plan.

Bree quickly took off her shoes. She got into bed. She pulled the covers up around her. "Mommy!"
she called out loudly. Then, she realized she sounded much too healthy so she called out again a little more quietly trying to sound weak. "Mommy!"

"What's the matter?" asked Mommy entering the room full of concern.

"Mommy, I don't feel so good."replied Bree half in a whisper.

Mommy touched Bree's forehead and then she kissed it. It didn't feel warm. She took Bree's temperature. Bree wasn't running a fever.

"My head hurts and my tummy hurts, and I feel just awful." complained Bree. She began moaning and groaning. Then, she pretended she had to throw up. She hurried to the bathroom and made gagging noises, and then flushed the toilet. Afterwards, she rushed back into bed and hurried under her covers."I feel awful, mommy."she moaned in her saddest voice.

"Oh, my poor baby." stated Mommy. "You just stay in bed and take it easy today."

"Okay, Mommy." Bree said quietly pretending to be weak with pain.

"Do you need anything, Baby?" asked Mommy worriedly.

"Just a glass of water." replied Bree making her voice sound as scratchy as she could."My throat is really sore."

"Okay." replied Mommy. "I'll get it for you." She turned and left the room.

The minute she was gone, Bree jumped out of bed and started silently cheering. She couldn't believe her plan had gone so well, and she had gotten out of school. She was really a great actress!

Bree heard Mommy's footsteps down the hall. She quickly got back into bed and started moaning and groaning again.

"My poor baby." stated Mommy sympathetically. "I'm so sorry you're not feeling good, and you are going to miss the picnic."

"What?!" asked Bree in surprise forgetting to pretend to be sick.

"Daddy's company's picnic. Don't you remember the one they have every year?"

Of course, Bree remembered. She looked forward to it every year. They got to swim and eats lots of fun food and have all kinds of crazy races.

"I'm sure. I'll feel better by then." Bree assured her mother pretending to weakly lying back down on her pillow again. "I would really hate to make you and Daddy miss the picnic." She didn't really care so much if they missed it she just didn't want to miss it herself.

"That's okay." Now it was Mommy's turn to assure Bree. "We'll just have to skip it this year."

"But I am sure I'll feel better by then." Bree repeated.

"But honey," Mommy reminded her. "Today is Saturday. The picnic is today. We'll just have to skip it this year. I'm sure we'll get there again next year. Now, you just lie down and rest. I'll be back to check on you again later."

As soon as her mother left the room, Bree sat up in bed. She put her face in her heads and shook her head. She couldn't believe she had forgotten today was Saturday.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

The Girl With Many Names

Raylee Bevins was an only child, but she had a large extended family.  Her mother was the second youngest of six kids. Her dad was the second youngest of eight. She had over 30 first cousins. Most of them were older than Raylee but three of them were younger .  Frankie and Erin were her mother's younger brother's kids. Missy was her father's younger brother's daughter.

Raylee adored little kids, and she loved her younger cousins. They were crazy about her too. Unfortunately, they all lived far away in other states. Raylee didn't get to see them that often so when she did, they could never remember her name.

"Kaylee!" Erin shouted from the top of Grandma's steps at one family gathering. "Kaylee! Come and plan with me."

Raylee briefly looked up from the couch where she was sitting scrolling through her phone, but she didn't realize Erin was taking to her so she quickly went back to it.

Erin loudly scrambled down the steps and got right in front of Raylee. "Kaylee! Play with me."she repeated.

"My name is Raylee." Raylee reminded her cousin, but Erin wasn't listening. She was ushering Raylee into the other room to play with her.

Later Raylee played hide and seek with all three of her little cousins. When it was Frankie's turn to be it,  Raylee hid behind the kitchen door. The grownups were all sitting at the kitchen table talking and drinking coffee.  Frankie came running into the room, but he didn't see Raylee. He left the room and quickly found Erin and Missy, but he still couldn't find Raylee. "Where's Maylee?" he asked the grownups finally after spending ten frustrating minutes searching.

"Maylee?" asked Grandma in surprise. "Who is Maylee?" All the other grownups agreed they had no idea who Frankie was talking about.

Frankie sighed and grew even more frustrated. "Maylee!" he repeated throwing his arms around wildly."You know? My cousin, Maylee!"

"Oh." said Grandma. "You mean Raylee!" The other grownups murmured in agreement.

'What's so hard about Raylee' thought Raylee. She didn't know why it was so hard for her little cousins to remember her name.

Later, that night Raylee sat on the couch with Frankie on one side of her and Erin on the other and Missy in her lap as she read them stories. "I love you, Haylee." said Missy snuggling up against her big cousin.

Raylee smiled, and she realized it didn't really matter what they called her. She adored her little cousins, and they loved her too, and that was all that mattered.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

The Hot Hot Day

It was a steamy hot day and Dakota Yule had been outside playing. She came in the house to cool off. It didn't seem cooler at all. In fact, it felt hotter than ever. Sweat was dripping down her face. "Mommy," she said accusingly as if the heat were Mommy's fault. "It's hot in here!"

Her mother went over and put her hand over the vent. "There's isn't any cold air coming out." she said. "We'll have to call the repairman." Mommy quickly called the repairman and made an appointment.

"When's it going to be fixed?" Dakota asked eagerly as soon as Mommy got off the phone. She felt hotter than ever. She felt as if she were melting.

"He won't be able to get here for a few days." explained Mommy. "It's been really hot and a lot of people have broken air conditioners. We'll have to wait our turn."

Dakota stuck her lower lip out and pouted. She didn't want to wait her turn. She wanted their air conditioning fixed now.

Mommy found a couple of old fans in the basement, and they set them up in the living room. The fans were really old and small though. After a while, it felt like they were just blowing hot air around.

"Let's try to keep our mind off the heat." suggested Mommy. Dakota didn't know how that was possible. "Why don't we play a game." said Mommy. They went to Dakota's room and found a game to play, but it was too hot to pay attention and after a while they gave up.

They tried watching TV, but they could concentrate on that either. Just as they turned off the TV the phone rang, Mommy went to get it. She was gone for a while. While she was gone, Dakota just sat there thinking about how hot she was.

"That was Aunt Beverly." explained Mommy. "She wanted to talk about the wedding." Dakota smiled. Aunt Beverly was her mother's sister. She would be getting married in a month, and all she ever wanted to talk about was the wedding. Dakota was going to be a flower girl. She had a really pretty fancy new dress, and she couldn't wait to wear it. Aunt Beverly lived in California. Dakota and her parents lived in the Northeast. Dakota loved to visit Aunt Beverly. "The next time we go to visit Aunt Beverly can we go to Disneyland?" she asked.

"We won't see Aunt Beverly until the wedding." explained Mommy "and after the wedding she won't be living there anymore."

"She won't?" asked Dakota disappointedly.

"No, she'll be living with Roger in New York, but we'll get to see her more then." Mommy reminded Dakota cheerfully.

"Roger?" asked Dakota.

"Her fiancee." Mommy reminded Dakota. Dakota kept forgetting his name. "Husband's and wives live together, you know. " Mommy added.

Dakota instantly brightened. A smile spread across her face. Mommy thought it was the prospect of seeing more of Aunt Beverly that had made her so happy but it wasn't that at all. "Mommy!" Dakota exclaimed excitedly. "I need to get married."

Mommy smiled at Dakota's eagerness. "Don't worry." she assured her daughter. "Someday, you will."

"No!"replied Dakota desperately. "I need to get married now!"

"What's your hurry?" asked Mommy. "You're only a kid. You've got plenty of time."

"No, I don't." replied Dakota. "My house is hot. I need to move out now!"

Monday, July 3, 2017

The Doggy in the Window

"Come on Arabella!" demanded her older sister, Alina as they hurried along the sidewalk on their way to school. "We're going to  be late." Alina hated the way Arabella was always dawdling on the way to school. One minute she was following Alina, the next minute she was off picking a flower or staring at the cars driving past or just standing still lost in a daydream. Alina looked around and Arabella was nowhere to be found. Finally, she spotted her little sister, she sighed  and trudged after her.

Arabella was actually on the neighbor's lawn peering longingly in the window.

"Arabella!" screamed Alina approaching her. "What are you doing?"

"Look!" exclaimed Arabella without bothering to turn around. She pointed to the window where a little white dog was pressed up against the glass. "Isn't he cute?" she cooed glancing longingly at the dog.

"Yeah, sure." replied Alina abruptly. "Let's go. We're going to be late for school." She dragged her sister away from the window and off toward school.

The next day, on the way to school, when they walked by the house where the dog had been, Arabella hurried over before Alina could stop her. "Oh, look!" she cried excitedly. "There he is again!" She pointed to the window where the little dog was frantically pawing at the glass as if he wanted to get out and join his new friend. "He likes me." declared Arabella contently. "I'm going to call him Quincy."

"How can you name a dog that you don't even own?" inquired Alina. She thought Quincy was a dumb name for a dog anyway.

Arabella just glared at her sister, but didn't reply.

"Anyway, it's time to go to school."  Alina added dragging her sister off toward the sidewalk.

After that every day on the way to school, Arabella would insist on stopping at the window and visiting the little dog. She talked about him all the time as if he really were her dog. "I wonder how Quincy is doing today." she would say or "I bet Quincy would like a nice juicy bone."

Then, one day, they stopped by the window and the little dog wasn't there. Arabella knocked gently on the window, but the little dog still didn't come.

"Stop that." Alina told her worriedly pulling her away from the window.  She was afraid a person would come to the window instead. They didn't know who lived in the house and what they were liked they could be mean or crazy or something. Besides, whoever they were she was sure they wouldn't want Arabella knocking on their window.

"Where's Quincy?" fretted Arabella. "He's always here to greet me in the mornings."

"I'm sure he'll be back tomorrow." Alina assured her in a more sympathetic voice.

The next day, the little dog wasn't back. He wasn't there the day after that nor the day after that either.

By now, even Alina was getting worried. She hoped nothing happened to the little dog. She would hate to have to break it to Arabella if it had.

Finally one day as they were passing the house, an elderly woman came out of the door. Before, Alina could stop her Arabella hurried over. "What happened to Quincy?!" she demanded to know.

"What?" asked the woman with a startled look on her face.

"I'm sorry, M'am." replied Alina rushing over. "We were wondering what happened to your dog. We used to see him when went by one the way to school every morning. My sister became kind of fond of him."

"You mean, Penny, my dog?" replied the woman suddenly understanding. "She went to live with my grandchildren because I couldn't take care of her anymore."

"Oh." replied Arabella softly. She was glad the little dog was going to be in a home with children to play with but she sure was going to miss Quincy. She meant Penny. It was so hard to get used to the fact that Quincy's name was Penny, and he was a she.

"Do your grandchildren visit a lot?" asked Arabella eagerly. Maybe, she could still Qu-Penny, when they come to visit.

The woman shook her head. "Not as often as I'd like." she replied. "They live in another state." She looked sad when she said it.

Suddenly, Arabella knew she wasn't the only one who would miss the little dog. "Don't you have somebody to help you take care of Penny so then you wouldn't have to give her away?"

"I live by myself." the woman replied.

"Aren't you lonely?" asked Arabella.

"Arabella!" screamed Alina trying to drag her way. Sometimes, Arabella could be so embarassing.

Arabella ignored her sister and waited for the woman to reply.

"Sometimes." admitted the woman. Arabella reminded her so much of her own granddaughter. It brought a tear to her eye.

"I bet you miss your grandchildren a lot, don't you." sympathized Arabella. "And, I'm sure they miss you too. My grandma lives far away too, and I know I miss her. I could come visit you sometimes when you are feeling lonely and missing your grandchildren."

"Arabella!" shrieked Alina in horror. This time Arabella had definitely gone too far.

The woman didn't seem horrified at all, however. In fact, she seemed quite pleased and smiled brightly at Arabella. "I'd like that." she said. "and you can visit me when you are missing your Grandma."

"I'd like that too." replied Arabella. "My name is Arabella." she said putting out her hand.

"My name is Jane." replied the woman shaking it.

After that, Arabella visited Jane all the time. She was like another granddaughter to Jane, and Jane was like another grandmother to her. She even got to meet Jane's real grandchildren when they came to visit, and she liked them too. Sometimes, when they came they even brought Penny and Arabella got to see her.  She was always happy to see the little dog that had brought her and her surrogate grandmother together. She was convinced the little dog had done it on purpose. "You didn't want Jane to be lonely, did you? " she said to the little dog.

"That's crazy." replied Alina when Arabella told her she was convinced that Penny had purposely brought she and Jane together.

Arabella didn't care what Alina thought. She knew.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Cassidy's Story

Today's story is not only for my daughter but by my daughter.

Cassidy wanted to write a story. She only had one problem... she had no ideas. She sat in her chair and thought. She just could not think of anything. She decided to ask her oldest sibling and only brother Charles for advice. "Charles." She screamed running into his room

 "Cassidy". Charles said in a rather annoyed way. 'Next time you come in in my will you please knock? Anyway what do you need?"

"Fine, next time I'll knock." Cassidy said glaring at her big brother. Then, she started to grin a little. "I am writing a story, but I can't think of anything to write about." Cassidy stated starting to look sad again.

"Don't worry." Charles said excitedly. I have a great idea! How about there is a robot, and it is the only robot known to mankind. He lives with a boy or girl named Jack or Jackie. One day he finds a new robot and has to choose between the kid or the robot. How does that sound?"

"That's a great idea! In fact, it's the best idea I ever heard. I am so going to use that." Cassidy said  happily. Cassidy went back in her room and thought about Charles story idea. She didn't really like the idea. She just didn't want to hurt his feelings.

She sat in her room trying to think. Suddenly, she got an idea but not for the story. She would ask her big sister Abigail for advice. She would have a good  idea that Cassidy liked for sure. 'I should never have asked a boy he would have never said something I would like for my story.' Cassidy thought to herself.

"Knock Knock." Cassidy said as she leaned up to Abigail's door.

"Come in." Abigail answered.

 Cassidy cracked the door open a slight bit. She then slipped through and quickly shut the door. She didn't want Charles to hear. He couldn't fined out that Cassidy didn't really like his idea."Hey!" Cassidy said. "I am writing a story, and I don't know what to write about. I thought maybe you would have a good idea."

Abigail loved to be outside so naturally her story idea had to do with flowers. She thought that Cassidy's story should be about a girl named Mary who liked to make crowns of flowers.

Cassidy told her she loved it although on the inside she didn't really like it at all. She went back to her room to think some more. "I know I'll ask Izzy. Surely, she'll have an idea I like. Cassidy thought. Izzy was Cassidy's twin sister. Cassidy went downstairs to the living room. Izzy was there sitting on the couch. "Can you help me?" Cassidy asked.

"Sure." Izzy replied.

"Well, I'm writing a story, but I don't know what to write my story about." Cassidy said as she looked up at Izzy.

"You're in luck. I have a great idea! You should write about a little boy named Samuel and his sister Jacklyn, and the two of them go on tons of adventures." Izzy declared happily.

"Thanks for the idea." Cassidy said as she walked back to her room. She didn't really like that idea either. "I will try asking Mackenzie." Cassidy thought. Mackenzie was Cassidy's only younger sibling.

"Mackenzie. Can you help me?" Cassidy asked. Mackenzie nodded. "I am trying to write a story. What do you think it should be about?" Cassidy inquired.

"Write bout magical baby ponies." Mackenzie answered

"Good idea." Cassidy replied. She didn't really like that idea ether. Cassidy forgot Mackenzie was only two. How would she have an idea that was good for Cassidy's story?

Cassidy finally thought of an idea she liked. She didn't know what to do. She couldn't tell the others she didn't really like their ideas. She covered her face in her hands and started to cry.

"What's the matter sweetie?" Mommy asked sweetly as she walked over to Cassidy.

"I am writing a story, but I didn't know what to write about. So I asked Charles. Then, I asked Abigail. Next, I asked Izzy, and then, I asked Mackenzie. I told them all I loved their ideas, but I didn't really like any of them. Then, I finally thought of what I like for my story, but don't know how I can tell them." Cassidy said through her tears.

"Write about what you want to write about. They will understand." Mommy replied

"Thanks Mommy. Cassidy answered.

"You can write your story later though. Now, come down for dinner." Mommy said.

"Okay." Cassidy replied. As Cassidy walked down the stairs, she heard her siblings talking.

"I can't wait to hear Cassidy's story  about Samuel and his sister Jacklyn!" Izzy said excitedly.

"Samuel and Jacklyn?" said Charles with a puzzled expression on his face. "She is writing about a robot.

"No." Mackenzie said. She write bout magical baby ponies." Mackenzie said happily.

"No. She's writing about...." Abigail started to say, but she was interrupted by Cassidy.

"The truth is I didn't know what to write about so I asked each of you. I told you I loved all your ideas because I didn't want to hurt your feelings even though I didn't really like any of them. Also, I finally thought of what I actually want to write about, and that is a koala bear named Lyla. I am really sorry." Cassidy stated.

"It's fine." Abigail said. "We were all just trying to help, but it's your story write it about what you want not what one of us wants."

They all nodded in agreement.

After that day, Cassidy still asked her siblings for help with ideas for stories, but she never lied about liking their ideas.