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Farm Friendly

I peeked into the entryway when I heard the back door open. My three younger grandsons had finished playing in the snow and were coming in to warm up. Remembering how frost-nipped their cheeks and fingers were after sledding in my backyard last month, I went to the kitchen to pour them cups of hot sweet tea. As I buttered toast for them, I could hear them stamping snow off their boots. Since they rolled around in the snow when they played, I knew there would also be snow clinging to their clothing.

Eleven-year-old Ben was the first to step into the kitchen. I said, “I’ve made tea and toast for you.” He grinned his appreciation and sat down at the table. Nine-year-old Luke came in next and eagerly accepted a cup from me. Jacob, who will be seven in May straggled in last. After placing the buttered toast on the table, I checked the entryway to see if I needed to hang wet snowsuits over the registers. What I saw was the inner house door hanging wide open. Since my wood pellet thermostat is in the entryway, I don’t like it when that room gets chilled. The rest of the house would soon be roasting!

I opened my mouth, but it was my mother’s voice that came out of it. She said, “Who was the last person into the house? Were you born in a barn? You left the door hanging open!” Continue reading

Mrs. Spelling Bee

I looked up from my paper. Without making a sound, our teacher, Sister Mary Florence was walking slowly up one row and down the next. All 48 children sat still at their desks, silent as mice when the cat is about. Outside, the wind moaned subdued complaints as it swirled through the playground. The bank of windows which ran the length of our fourth grade classroom creaked as the wind push against them. The radiators below, whispered, ‘click, click, click’ as warm water from the school’s boiler room flowed through the pipes. Continue reading

Mystery, She Wrote

Blood! There were drops of blood all over the deck at my back door. My heart jumped and a lump formed in my throat. A scenario of how they came to be there instantly formed in my mind based on noises I’d heard during the night.  Someone had needed help, but if they rang the door bell, I had never awakened! Guilt seared my conscience.

At bedtime the night before, I had leaned over to peer out my second floor bedroom window. My house sits next to a bridge that spans a small river. The tree leaves along the river shimmered in the moonlight. As I looked, the country-side darkness was sliced open by the headlights of a car speeding past. Its tires went, “thip-thip” over a bump in the asphalt near the bridge. In the silence following it’s passing, a frog croaked. Continue reading