Showing posts with label stories. Show all posts
Showing posts with label stories. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Apparently Spelling Doesn't Count in that Incredibly Long Run-on Sentence

I have recently come across a pile of papers waiting to be sorted.  There were a lot of homework assignments or notes from both Jenna and me.   I copied a few of her stories to read through at a more convenient time and threw the hard copies away.  She doesn't have the best handwriting, and her spelling is atrocious. 

Turns out I copied three partial stories.  One was about Emily Rogers, a teacher who wished she had well behaved students and seemed to get her wish - but her "wish come true" turned out to be somewhat eerie.  I love Jenna's imaginative description:

it was silent like a cheetah eyeing its prey waiting for the right moment to pounce.  It was sort of creepy. 

She had also  written a story about a character named Latisha Cannon who didn't enjoy math and also made a wish not to have it anymore and how the world seemed to change when math was no longer a part of it.  Both Emily and Latisha woke up at the end of the story.

Some of her errors made me laugh, but after a while I was appalled that she hasn't been learning how to spell or use punctuation correctly.  I know that cursive was removed from the schools.  Was spelling as well?  I get that grammar can sometimes be difficult, but surely she knows  that a sentence has to come to an end eventually. 

It is certainly convenient having spell check or even Grammarly which will catch the errors that a person may have spelled correctly, but the word needed has a different spelling.  For instance she had written "loan star state" instead of "Lone Star State" in her story about Wanda - no last name, but only story title.  It was called: Wanda and the Rain Stick

She didn't wake up at the end.  Not much of a plot.

I'm happy for the opportunities I've had to further my education and understanding.

Monday, May 16, 2016

Treasured Memories on Imagination

My last post was about the treasures I discovered on 8mm tapes.  Yesterday I found a notebook with a couple of stories that I would like to share.  The first came from Jenna's head when she was three going on four.  I wish I had filmed her telling it, for it doesn't read quite the same (even with visual aids) as it is to watch her tell the story as she uses "Cootie" parts to emphasize particular parts in the story.

For my readers who may not be familiar with the Milton Bradley game, Cooties, here is a brief description and history.

The younger generation may view "Cooties" as "cute" game pieces.  The heads on the game I grew up with looked like ants.

Keep in mind that Jenna was using a cootie body to demonstrate as she told her story (again and again) 

And So the story unfolds:
            Once upon a time there was a 
caterpillar named Date  who wanted 
to grow up to be a butterfly.  
But his mom said that he would 
not be one right now and would 
have to wait until tomorrow.  
So he went to bed and the next 
morning he woke up and made a 

 so he popped off his head  (she told me later that she had said out, but I had heard off) 

 and slept in his cocoon and when he came out he was a beautiful butterfly 

who flew around .  And he flew and he flew until he was dead.  And then they sweeped him up.

            I don't remember laughing at her.  I thought her ending was kind of morbid - I mean - where did she come up with that? but I do remember her dad and brothers laughing.  She was amused that they found it amusing, and thus repeated the story.  It's funny that I had forgotten that she had once told it quite often (which is how I remembered what words to write down)

            I also had struggles with getting her to eat a balanced meal (still do) and used this story on her.

          Once upon a time there was a beautiful girl named Jill.  She had brown hair and brown eyes and a wonderful imagination.  Jill could ride unicorns to school and fly home on the wings of a giant bird.  She could grant wishes with her magic wand.  She could swim in the oceans with mermaids.  She could be a doctor, a teacher, a mother, model, dancer, magician, even and animal.  Jill could do and be whatever she wanted except for one thing.  Jill could not eat whatever or whenever she wanted to. 

          Her imagination didn't work in her mouth or her stomach.  It wouldn't have been so bad if Jill would eat fruit and vegetables as a snack and not just candy or if she would eat the same dinner as the rest of her family and use her imagination to make believe it tasted like cake or ice cream.  Jill didn't always appreciate the snacks that her mom would give her.  Often Jill wished she could really perform real magic, then she could eat whatever and whenever she wanted.  But then so could her mother who was fat and whose teeth were falling out because she had eaten whatever and whenever she wanted her entire life. 

           Jill's' mother loved her and didn't want Jill to become fat and toothless and sickly because of her poor eating choices.  She also wanted Jill to be grateful. 

          One day Jill ate a casserole that her mom had made - even though it had red sauce and meat.  Jill imagined she was Goldilocks and that mom's casserole was baby bear's porridge.  Jill ate it all up.  And it was good.  She didn't throw up.  And she didn't die.  Jill and her mom made a deal with one another.  Jill could have a candy bar once a week.  And she would always eat nutritious food such as apples, pears and even broccoli.  And Jill and her mom lived happily ever after in good health.

It didn't work then.  There's no way it's going to work on her now.  She does like fruit and will eat two or three apples in a given day.  However Vegetables are still a sore subject.

I also have (in her handwriting - er, print) "The Happy Feather" by Jenna, illustrated by Jenna . . . that is all.  No story.  No illustration.  It's nice to have an example of her writing however.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Grandma Really Didn’t Jump From an Airplane

I am currently taking a family history class through the Church because Roland wants to take the class but can't always be there and so has asked me to come with him in the event that he has to miss a class.
Yesterday we shared memories of our ancestors.  I had known from the beginning that I would need to come up with something.  And I have written down thoughts here and there - but nothing major about anyway.  I finally ended up sharing three stories that mom had shared about herself and a family member's name.  Of course once the class was over, I have been able to come up with some other memories.  Here is one:

     My mom has never had a great sense of direction – at least since I’ve known her.  Sometimes she would forget small things and exaggerate about things like, “having to drive around the world” when it had taken her longer to get to places than anticipated.

     When she first was diagnosed with dementia, her children often wondered if it was still her personality that caused her to do things (or not do things) or if the dementia had taken over.  We soon realized that it was her dementia.

     One time Corey and Mom had gone over to Patrick and Sunnys’s house and were having dinner with the family.  The topic at hand happened to be skydiving.  Ellen and Kimball had experienced jumping out of an airplane in real life – and Candy had been saving her money so that she might go sky diving sometime in the future.  I think they said Sunny had wanted to go, also.

     They said mom all the sudden joined in the conversation.  “You know I’ve been skydiving, too.” And then proceeded to go into detail about her experience.

     Now, you must understand, my mom was fearful of heights.  She didn’t even like to ride the sky ride (similar to a ski lift) at Lagoon (an amusement park in Farmington, Utah) because her legs were dangling.  There is no way in real life she would have ever jumped out of an airplane.

     But eventually the account she related came with such superior detail that even Corey had questioned it as he looked at the others and said, “Did she?” as each of the others shrugged.

     Throughout the rest of her life she continued to tell her account of how she had “jumped out of a plane”. 

     Four months after we put her into assisted living, she met another resident of the facility.  His name was Harold Martin and he had flown in small-uncovered airplane for real.  He was fascinated by mom’s story and wish that he too had had the opportunity of skydiving.

     He must have noticed that mom’s story varied a bit each time she told him.  For what started out as a private jet with an instructor ended up a commercial airline that was going down, and the crew had insisted that each of the passengers jump out in order to be spared.

     If mom had lived any longer, I think her story would have changed to being pushed rather than jumping of her own free will.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

Remembering Mom

         It was in January of 2012 that my sibs and I worked together with my niece and her husband to put ourselves on a schedule so that someone would always be at home with my mom – which unfortunately did not always work out.

         We would keep in touch by phone and sending the same email to our group so that we could all kind of keep track of what was going on.  It wasn’t until November when Nate decided to create a group page on facebook.  He gave it the name “Operation Grandma Care”.  We started out with Six members and gradually we became Nine.

         The site was up for less than three months before we had moved my mom into assisted living. I don’t know when Nate removed himself from the group but it couldn’t have been more than eight months after he’d created the site.  Nevertheless the seven of us that remained continued to keep tabs on one another, supply information and make inquiries. 

         Pictures we posted and Sunny even posted a video which shows my mom singing three songs. What a treasure that is!  I am so grateful to Nate for having created the site for us.

         After my mom passed away less than five months ago, we decided we would keep the site but we changed the name.  Well, Kayla did.  Operation was dropped and an S was added to make “Grandma Cares”  It’s funny that the site contains only one grandchild. 
         We kept it in order to share stories and photos and memories of mom but also of dad and our family.  Corey will periodically post discoveries he has made while going through her journals. Yesterday I posted one of Jenna’s favorite stories that only Patrick and I had experienced.  (Fortunately for Corey and Kayla they both missed out)

         True story: In searching for creative ways to economize, Salt Lake Tribune had a featured area of suggestions and recipes.  My mom tried one called “Peanut Butter Casserole”  the very idea of putting tomatoes, onions and peanut butter together would make my nose turn – but now that I’ve tasted it, I can honestly say the idea makes me puke.

         Mom decided to go heavy on the peanut butter – which I have no way of knowing weather it improved or hindered the taste.  My brother Patrick thought it was the grossest thing ever.  He had had only one bite and figured out what the ingredients were and pulled away from the table as though he had been bitten. 

         I remember finding the recipe that mom had so carefully cut out of the paper.  I tore it to bits and distributed only a few pieces into each trash can we had in the house.  Mom wasn’t good at puzzles.  She would never be able to put it back together if she wanted to.  But she too, admitted it was bad.

         I didn’t realize until my neighbor commented on my post that she too had tortured her family with the yucky excuse for a meal.  She, too, can testify to its awfulness.  Now we can all laugh at the experience.

         Thanks again, Nate, for creating the site for us.  We do have another site with all of our children to inform them of events taking place currently.  But it’s fun to have a “Grandma Cares” site for memories

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Elephants CAN Jump

          I don’t know how often Roland has asked the following question to various people: “What is the only mammal that cannot jump?” 

          The answer is, “an elephant.”

          Whether it is accurate or not isn’t relevant – not to this post anyway.  Corey liked the title “Elephants Can’t Jump” and thought he would use it for a future post – although he didn’t know what.  I imagined some profound analogy that had nothing to do with elephant at all, but would leave his readers thinking, “What a great post.” as his posts are usually quite thought provoking.

          This is neither great nor profound.  Needed fun to lighten up the mood from many of my most recent posts.

I had memorized Eletelephony by Laura Elizabeth Richards.  It’s a fun little nonsense poem.

Once there was an elephant,
Who tried to use the telephant—
No! no! I mean an elephone
Who tried to use the telephone—
(Dear me! I am not certain quite
That even
now I've got it right.)
Howe'er it was, he got his trunk
Entangled in the telephunk;
The more he tried to get it free,
The louder buzzed the telephee—
(I fear I'd better drop the song
Of elephop and telephong!)

I don’t know why I always pick the elephant when playing guessing games. But somehow I find myself using the elephant as part of my outrageous answer, and yet I always do.

Jenna:          “Guess what we did at school today?”

Me:              “I don’t know, what?”

Jenna:          “Guess.”

Me:              “you all rode elephants around the classroom and now the school has a large hole in it where the classroom used to be because the elephants did so much damage"

Jenna will laugh and tell me what really happened.

It wasn’t too long ago when she wrote the following story:

Pg1:   My name is [Jenna].  I never seen an elephant draw.   
         But I’ve read that they write.
Pg2:   Did you know that elephants could write? It’s true.   
         They can write.

Pg 3: Have you ever seen one?  I’m sure you haven’t.  
         They’re really hard to find.
Pg4:   I really want to see one but I’ll never get to see one!
Pg5:   I think Kangaroo’s swim.

(I had added the pictures once I deciphered her first grade handwriting)

And today she asked, “What should I draw?”  

I used to suggest simple things, but today’s suggestion was:  “Why don’t you draw an elephant trying to climb into a keyhole.”

The result:

How great it is to encourage and enjoy imagination.  Because it is through imagination that elephants can jump and fly, read and write, dance and swim.  And that’s such an awesome thing!

Friday, December 7, 2012

What Makes the Reindeer Fly

         At the end of last month, Jenna (mentioned in this post) decided that she and I would each write a story.  This is the one I came up with:

          Once upon a time, in a land far away, there lived a colony of umbas.  Now “what is an umba?” you may ask. An umba was a creature so small that he was overlooked for many years.

The umbas lived in an enchanted forest filled with candy canes and gumdrops. The candy canes, to them, were the size of trees.  And the gumdrops could be sat upon, the way a human might sit on a large rock.

          One day an elf entered the forest where the umbas lived.  The elf had been sent on a mission by Santa Clause himself.  He had been given the field assignment of finding a treat that could be left in the stockings of good boys and girls.

The umbas hid from the elf because he was so much larger than they and they were afraid that he was a harmful giant. After all he had been crushing parts of their forest with his feet.

          When the hungry elf looked beneath his feet when he heard a loud crunch, he bent over and picked up a broken candy cane.  He looked around and noticed several candy canes and gumdrops.

“What were these things?” he wondered. 

He sniffed and tasted.  Oh, what deliciousness.  He bent over even further to pick up a gumdrop.  It had a different taste and texture but it too was delicious. The elf removed a large pouch from around his shoulder and proceeded to fill it full of candy canes and gumdrops.  The umbas were devastated.  How in the world would they ever protect their land and homes?

          When the elf returned to the north pole with his newfound candy collection, Santa was impressed.  He recruited a team of elves to gather what was left – and to take with them a specialist who could determine how to replenish what was removed.

          The umbas meanwhile had prepared a way to protect themselves from the evils of the elves.  They fought to save their land – but because they were so teeny, they were unnoticed by the elves – who continued to pick candy canes and gumdrops and drop them into their bags.

          Many umbas returned to Santa’s castle that day – for they had remained clinging onto candy canes and gumdrops that had been picked.  Being at the North Pole was a whole new adventure for them.  They had moved themselves into the barn where the reindeer lived.

          Now, before the umbas had moved in, Santa’s reindeer were just like any other deer.  They didn’t fly.  But gradually they learned how.  You see, the umbas carried a magic inside of them which was passed on to the reindeer who had eaten the entire population of umbas.  And so even though we don’t have umbas anymore, it is through them that the reindeer were given the power to fly.


Monday, November 19, 2012

“Brave” and the Liahona

         Roland and I took mom to the movies after our Saturday Thanksgiving dinner.  We chose “Brave” because it was the shortest wait.  Mom enjoyed it which in itself made it worth it.   I felt intrigued by the parallels that seemed unfold – for me anyway.

          Merida is typical of many teens – many who have gone beyond teen hood but still place more faith in self than  a higher being.

          Merida’s mother attempts to prepare Merida for the role of princess and what expectations are included and what the future holds – none of which fit into Merida’s own plans of “freedom” of expressing herself, of taking on adventures without the hassles of trying to please everyone by fulfilling a role that is clearly NOT the fate she would choose for herself.

          The story incorporates the legend ofthe wisp

          “The will o' the wisp definition if we could actually define it would go something like this: a supernatural luminescent, flickering or dancing white to blue light occasionally seen over bodies of water, in meadows, and in forests . . . There has been a lot of theories as to what the will o' the wisp meaning or message really is. As previously mentioned, many people in Scotland, Ireland, and England thought that the will o' the wisp was actually lights emanating from fairies.” -   It is the “wisp” that Merida follows with the belief that it will change her fate.

          When she meets a witch who agrees to give her a spell, she is guaranteed that her fate will indeed be changed. Right away I figured that her fate would indeed be changed – but not in the way Merida had hoped or expected.

          Often we think that we want our lives to go a certain way – or perhaps it is expected of some of us to follow in the footsteps of the family business or practice.  Perhaps it’s expected of some to make the most of his or her education.  And perhaps there are many who feel that restrictions have been placed upon them and that freedoms have been taken away.  We seek a path that is pleasing to us and follow our hearts or the legendary “wisps” or perhaps we turn to a more powerful source.  Perhaps we acknowledge deity and ask for assistance to take us down the road of our desires.

          Like the witch in “Brave” our Father does provide us with assistance, often sending us tools that we may “grow” our own blessings.  But often we don’t realize that what has been “planted” is not at all what we had asked for – or thought we had asked for rather.  Often we are given a different path, or another direction and must go with it in faith and do our best to understand why we have been placed in a certain position, when really, that is not we asked for at all.  Or did we?

          The following day I was to give the lesson in our youth class.  I had read the lesson, tried pondering it, tried studying, but it just wasn’t coming together for me.  It’s not that my understanding of the material was limited (as is often the case) but just seemed that it would be majorly short if I didn’t get the participation that I needed.

          I may have mentioned it before – only I can’t find where – we have only one youth.  In addition there is the other class instructor and two of the young men instructors (one who is married to the instructor that I alternate lessons with) and a brother who would like lessons as they are simplified to the youth.

          I wasn’t well prepared.  The lesson itself was on the name of the church (3 Nephi 27), the desires of the twelve disciples (3 Nephi 28), and the pride cycle (4 Nephi).  I can’t remember why Bro. Basic brought up the Liahona  – but Jack held up his Ipad and said that it was the Liahona.  And the Young Men leaders ran with it.

Jed compared it to the compass used by Lehi and his family and pointed out that the Ipad or smart phone can be used for direction just as a compass.  We can choose to follow in faith or we can be misguided by our own weakness or pride.  We can find tools that will help us on the path to eternal life or we can find paths that may lead us to destruction.  I had never thought of that before.  I thought it was a cool analogy.

I feel quite blessed to be serving a calling in which I am learning more from the class members than I imagine they can be learning from me.  I feel quite blessed with the class participation and the profound thoughts that help me simplify and better understand things.

I feel blessed too to view things in a way that many people may not.  Such as finding God’s message hidden in a Disney/Pixar animation. That was definitely not intended.

I’m grateful for analogies and parables and those who are gifted with words to speak to the intelligent but also explain things on a “Dick and Jane level that I too may understand.

I’m grateful there are those who can translate Isaiah.  I still don’t grasp all of it.  There are some who have viewed me as one who is knowledgeable in the scriptures.  There is a lot that I do understand.  But there is even more that I don’t.

I’m grateful that we have wisps and Liahona’s in our lives to guide us if we will but have the faith to follow.   I'm grateful that there is a force greater than ourselves who really does know best.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Knowonder we like it

          Phillip Chipping had a great idea of creating a magazine that would include one story for each day of the month.  Children would be encouraged to read and create. Then in September 2009 this wonderful magazine was featured in libraries across the nation.  Free to the public – for three months – and then it disappeared.
          But as with so many other businesses and personal lives, the economy robbed us of the funding that were needed to keep the magazine going.  And then in September of 2011 knowonder seemed to be reborn on the Internet.  A second chance.  Perhaps better access? 

Seemed to take another rest from its regular routine after December – oh, the stories continued – ones that we’re familiar with, ones that we grew up on – given in parts.  There used to be something to read for each day.  I can’t remember when it took another rest.

It’s back!  Format has changed a bit.  The stories aren’t dated (there used to be one for each day of the month) with some new additions – or perhaps it just seems more inviting – Fun Facts.  Introducing children to non-fiction and trivia in a very delightful way.  I’m impressed.

I do miss the cards though.  In the three initial catalogues from 2009 there were four cards inserted near the end – with these cards readers were encouraged to use their imagination and create stories using at least three of the four cards. 

Jenna absolutely LOVES these cards!  We’ve used these twelve as party starters. And we all chimed in while writing our own story (which was never published as it was submitted late November 2009 – the last published catalogue) I will have to dig further to find it.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

The Big Red Hen and the Tired Blue Cat

          Roland and his boss purchased some property years ago – the idea was to flip the house, make money – but the location of it all became a great nightmare for all of us.  I referred to the project as “The Nightmare on Oak Street”

          At the time I referred to Roland as the Big Red Hen because of his attempts to involve our three boys in his house fixing project.  Meanwhile, I was attempting to get them to help me around the house that we actually lived in.  I was not as aggressive as Roland and had a toddler who wore me out.

          Though the sharing this story with the boys did not produce the results we were hoping for, Jenna is totally amused with hearing it today – and thought I should share it on my blog.  So here goes:

The story of the
Big Red Hen and
the Tired Blue Cat

“Who will help me clean a house?” asked the Big Red Hen.
‘I’ll go,” said the Tired Blue Cat, “but I’ll need to find a sitter for my sunshine.”
They worked along side a Friendly Orange Rooster.  There were items that were heavy, lots of hazardous waste, lots of dirt. The Tired Blue Cat didn’t feel like she was pulling her weight because the Big Red Hen and the Friendly Orange Rooster were both so much stronger.

“Who will help me clean a house?” the Big Red Hen asked again.
“Not I,” said the Pumped Up Tiger.  “I’ve made plans to go to the gym. Today’s the day that I build the muscles in my chest.”
“Not I,” said the Free Loading Chipmunk. “I’m going to be hanging out with my friend, Mikey.”
“Oh, I would if I could,” said the Lazy Con Monkey, “but I have to clean my already immaculate room. Why can’t the tiger or the chipmunk do it?”

The Big Red Hen did not accept their lame excuses and dragged them to the house kicking and screaming.. The tiger and the chipmunk complained the entire time.
The monkey believed he had found rare treasures and constantly asked, “Can I have this? Can I have that?” For the most part neither the Rooster nor the Hen cared what the Monkey took.

“Who will do the dishes and mop the floor?” asked the Tired Blue Cat. 
“Not I,” said the Pumped Up Tiger.  “I’ve made plans to go to the gym. Today’s the day that I build the muscles in my legs.”
“Not I,” said the Free Loading Chipmunk. “I’ve done them the last two nights. I need some new shoes”
“I already vacuumed and did the bathroom and took out the garbage and washed a load of towels,” said the Lazy Con Monkey. “Why can’t the tiger or the chipmunk do it?”

“Who will help me tear down some walls in the house?” asked the Big Red Hen.
 “Not I,” said the Pumped Up Tiger. “I’ve made plans to go to the gym. Today’s the day that I build the muscles in my arms.”
 “Not I,” said the Free Loading Chipmunk. “I feel like drawing something. I need some new markers”
“Oh, I would if I could,” said the Lazy Con Monkey, “But I have to fix my bike”

The Big Red Hen did not accept their lame excuses and dragged them to the house kicking and screaming.. The monkey and the chipmunk complained the entire time. The tiger learned that wrecking walls was pretty fun and he was still getting a workout in his arms.

“Who will pick up all the towels off  the laundry room floor?” asked the Tired Blue Cat
“Not I,” said the Pumped Up Tiger. “I did three towels last week with my personal laundry which is still on top of the dryer”
“Not I,” said the Free Loading Chipmunk. “I have too much homework. I need a new binder.”
“Not I,” said the Lazy Con Monkey. “I left my bike over at Stephano’s house and I was just leaving to go and get it. Why can’t the tiger or the chipmunk do it?”
“All three of you should be able to do it,.” said the Tired Blue Cat. “All three of you pass the laundry room everyday – I would say at least four times a day.”
“Okay, I’ll do it,” whined the Free Loading Chipmunk. And he did.  And he was still able to do his homework.

“Who will help me build the house?” asked the Big Red Hen. 
“Not I,” said the Pumped Up Tiger. “I’ve made plans to go to the gym. Today’s the day that I build the muscles in my back.”
 “Not I,” said the Free Loading Chipmunk. “I’ve got to run an additional 20 miles just for fun.”
 “Oh, I would if I could,” said the Monkey, “but I was just going to K-Mart to buy a patch kit so that I can fix my bike . Why can’t the tiger or the chipmunk do it?”
“I’ll go,” said the Tired Blue Cat, “but I’ll need to find a sitter for my sunshine.”

And so the Big Hen took the Blue Cat.  Once again the Blue Cat felt like she wasn’t pulling her weight and soon had to leave when she heard her sunshine was acting up. And so the Big Red Hen and the Friendly Orange Rooster started to build.

“Who will clean the tub?” asked the Tired Blue Cat.
“Not I,” said the Pumped Up Tiger. “I’ve made plans to go to the gym. Today’s the day that I build the muscles in my abs”
“Not I,” said the Free Loading Chipmunk. “My legs hurt. Do we have any ebsom salt?”
 “Not I.” said the Lazy Con Monkey, “I was just leaving the house to go to the library to meet my friend Stephano. Why can’t the Chipmunk or the Tiger do it?”

 “Who will help me mow the lawn?” asked the Big Red Hen. 
“Not I,” said the Pumped Up Tiger. “I have to go mow somebody else’s lawn”
“What do you intend to use as a lawn mower?”  asked the Big Red Hen. 
“Well couldn’t you let me use the lawn mower to mow my yard before you do the yard at your house?” asked the Pumped Up Tiger.
“Why didn’t you use the lawn mower last night or yesterday afternoon?” asked the Big Red Hen who was quite annoyed.  He had worked his tail off the day and night before and could not make the time to use the lawn mower.  But the Pumped Up Tiger was not very good at prioritizing his time could have made the time. But it’s not like he had a great example to follow, either.

“Who will mop the floor?” asked the Tired Blue Cat..
“Not I,” said the Pumped Up Tiger. “I cleaned the counters and the table and finally got around to cleaning the stove and the microwave which you asked me to do the other day; the Lazy Monkey hasn’t done anything except for be lazy.”

She couldn’t ask the Chipmunk as he was out of town – otherwise they probably would have gotten it done. The Free Loading Chipmunk had actually done more chores than the Pumped Up Tiger and Lazy Con Monkey put together.

 “Oh, I would if I could,” said the Monkey, “but I just dumped the garbage and I split my finger open where the stitches were.”
 “Why aren’t the dishes done?” the Tired Blue Cat asked the Lazy Con Monkey.
“I’ve been cleaning the back room!” he exclaimed.  And he had.  And he had done a wonderful job. The Tiger had obviously not seen the back room.

“Who will help me paint the house?” asked the Big Red Hen. 
The Pumped Up Tiger did not answer because he was at the gym.
“Not I,” said the Free Loading Chipmunk. “I have too much homework.  And my legs hurt.”
 “Oh, I would if I could,” said the Monkey, “but I was just leaving to visit my friend Stephano; we are making a seat for the dirt bike that I found.”
“I’ll go,” said the Tired Blue Cat, “but I’ll need to find a sitter for my sunshine.”

But the Blue Cat could not always find a sitter and so sometimes the Big Red Hen had to do it by himself.  Or sometimes the Rooster would do it by himself. They couldn’t seem to get together at the same time anymore.

The tiger and chipmunk and monkey (not to mention the Tired Blue Cat) all got to hate the house.  And they especially hated it when the Big Red Hen would order them to stay home so that they could work on the house.  And sometimes they would spend hours waiting for the Big Red Hen to pick them up – one might think that they would be able to assist the Tired Blue Cat while they were waiting.  And many times the Free Loading Chipmunk would.  He preferred staying with the Tired Blue Cat and doing chores around her house than working at the Big Red Hen’s house investment.  The Lazy Con Monkey also made that claim saying that he would rather do chores for the Tired Blue Cat than go to the house with the Big Red Hen – but it was just talk as usual.

The monkey would always horn in on whatever was being said to the tiger or the chipmunk – but seemed to have a problem listening to whatever actually concerned him however. He was notorious for asking “What about the Tiger?  What about the Chipmunk” What about the tiger and chipmunk?  What about them?

The monkey had many talents.  He was a very quick learner. He enjoyed building things. He was very creative about making things.  And he was very charismatic and a very good actor. He was also very cunning, enjoyed telling stupid jokes and was lazy about labor and with his study habits. He actually had the potential for becoming a politician.

None of the animals knew how to prioritize.  The free loading chipmunk was willing to work for his money – unless Mikey called.  The Blue Cat had given the chipmunk permission to hang out with him So he didn’t think he was available to do one more chore that the Big Red Hen had invented – mainly for the Monkey and Tiger’s benefit.  The Blue Cat was upset about his lack of rationalization.

If the exotic bird from Thailand had been living with the other animals in America, he would have gone willingly and things would have gotten finished a lot quicker. But alas, he was no longer in the states.

The Big Red Hen’s house eventually got sold – and there was a small profit that was so not worth the labor.  The Tiger and Chipmunk and Monkey have all grown up.  The Chipmunk and Monkey are both married and living in apartments. The Chipmunk now has a baby chipmunk of his own. The Tiger still spends much of his time at the gym.  He should really put care and concern into keeping his room and house as clean and tidy as he tries to keep his body.

The exotic bird has gone back to Thiland and is now pursuing a career and relationship with a gorgeous parakeet.  Sunshine continues to grow.  There are many chores that she enjoys doing – but several that she does not.  When the Big Red Hen or Tired Blue Cat (who by the way is not nearly as tired anymore) remind her of something she doesn’t want to do, she whines and often throws a tantrum.  She seems to complain more than did the Tiger, Chipmunk and Monkey combind. Hopefully it’s just a stage.