Week 10: This Week’s Winning Stories

New Third Grade!

by Abigail

On the first day of March, Will had made the decision that his first day in his new third grade class would be fine. The more he thought about it, the less brave he felt, but he kept thinking about what his uncle always said. “You can do anything. All you have to do is try.”

Okay. All I have to do is try. All he thought about on his way downstairs was what his two older brothers would say if they noticed he was anxious. “Are you nervous?” his mother asked as he walked through the door.

“No,” he said, but when Will looked up, she could tell he was.

“Remember, it’s Lucy’s first day, too,” she said nervously. Lucy was Will’s shy six-year-old sister, who would be attending first grade this year.

“Where is Lucy?” one of Will’s older brothers asked.

“I don’t think she set her alarm this morning. Will, you have my permission to go gently wake her up.” Will agreed to his mother’s idea and went to go wake up Lucy.

“Lucy, it’s time to wake up,” he said, gently touching her shoulder very lightly. “Everyone else is eating breakfast.”

“What time is it?” Lucy asked, coming to the conclusion that she had slept too long.

“It’s 7:00 a.m. Hurry, we’re going early to see the principal’s introduction tour.”

“Oh, yeah. I should probably tell him about my eye,” Lucy stated.

Will remembered his sister’s eye operation as though it had happened yesterday even though it had been four years. “Maybe Mom should tell Mr. Bimple about your eye.”

“That’s a good suggestion.”

“Well, you’d better get ready so we aren’t late,” Will said, feeling as though this conversation would soon turn into a long discussion.

*******************

As soon as Will walked into his new classroom, he felt right at home. “You must be our new student. It’s Will, isn’t it?” Will nodded. “Well, then, Will, you can sit right there next to Rachel.” The teacher pointed to a girl with blue dye in her dirty blonde hair. Rachel smiled and waved. Will smiled back and went to sit down in the empty desk next to her.

“Miss Brown, I want you to show Will around and explain everything he needs,” the teacher said to Rachel. Will was so busy looking at his desk that he almost forgot everyone else was in the room and jumped.

“Okay, so I probably don’t know how nervous you’re feeling and won’t be too hard on you so you can always ask me for help. My name is Rachel Brown. It’s nice to meet you. Our teacher is Miss Egad. Her main profession is teaching, but she also plays the flute. Follow me?”

“Nice to meet you, too?” Will said, sounding confused.

“Oh, sorry if I was talking too much too fast.”

“It’s fine, but it would be a little easier to follow along if you slowed down,” he replied.

“Okay, so basically, our teacher is Miss Egad, and I’m Rachel Brown. You can always come to me with any questions.” Will nodded. Rachel took this as a good sign as his expression had softened, and he seemed a bit more relaxed.

*******************

“So how was your first day of school?” Will’s mother asked him on the drive home from school.

“It was great. I met a lot of people who were really nice, with the exception of one girl who talked too much.”

The Other Side

by Evan

Have you ever wondered what’s on the other side of the mirror you look into? Yeah, yeah. I know some will say the back of the mirror, but I’m asking is to think beyond the obvious. Think on the fringes of what is or is not believable and listen to my tale.

It happened on a normal school day afternoon. We had just been released to recess, and the gang made the decision to gather by the basketball courts. “EVAN, WATCH OUT!” BAM! I didn’t even have time to put my hands up in defense of my head. Things went a little loopy as my face ate a not so delicious ball. Sideways. Is it possible I was leaning sideways?

My friend looked at me, “Dude, are you all right?”

I responded, “I’m all right; I’m all right. Just got to hit the bathroom.” My departure was needed because that had hurt, and I didn’t want to look like I actually felt, which was not good at all.

As soon as I saw my face in the reflection of the mirror, I said to myself, So not all right! My sometimes-delightful face not only had a smear of dirt where the basketball had hit it, but the side of my cheek was swelling and looking like a benign tumor of some sort.

If was disturbing to watch my face distort like a clown mirror image. Well, that’s going to leave a mark, I thought. I stood there for awhile so I could demonstrate some calm. Could I even speak with this gigantic thing flopping on the side of my face? No doubt Ms. McClure would deduce that her eyesight had gone bad since one of her students now looked like he had two heads.

My friend, who was beyond the door, gave a tense, “Hurry up! You’re missing recess” shout.

“Uh, hold on. I’ll be there in a sec,” I said. As I wiped the dirt from what was once my sort of normal face, I heard a low chuckle. I can’t describe how cold that shiver was down my back when I heard it, but it was chilling.

I slowly lifted my half-swollen face to peer closer to the mirror. A burnt and blacked arm suddenly reached through the surface to pull me through. My last thought as I fell through was, Wait, did I turn off the water? Just kidding, it was more like HOLY ****! Helppppppppppppppppppppppppppp!!!!!!

To be continued.

California Exploding with Fires

by Taylor

“Oh, no….Okay,” my mom slowly said, with a worried expression in her voice.

I tapped on my phone that glowed my dark room with light to see an eruption of alarmed reactions to a fire. What? I couldn’t help but think. I looked at one text that read, “No School.” No school? There was another text that read, “That’s scary. My grandpa’s house burned.” WHAT? By that point, I was extremely lost.

Sleepy-eyed, I hopped out of bed. Darkness everywhere, I slowly walked into my mom’s bedroom. I turned to see the action of a fire on the television screen. It wasn’t until I read the headline that I realized Sonoma County was burning. That’s when I called my dad and had a serious discussion about what was happening. He explained a lot of information, though my heart was still dropping.

Later that day, I practiced division, which was weirdly my own decision. It still worried me that Sonoma County was not protected. Usually, I felt very safe in Petaluma, but not today–not at all.

After I stepped foot outside, dissatisfaction circled all around me and all around California, which was kind of horrifying to think about. No, what was truly horrifying to think about was the people who no longer had houses, schools, or places to work.

Later that night, my cousin called me to tell me that her old school was burned and her friends’ houses were also burned. “I just don’t know what I can do,” she said. “What if someone is starting these fires. That would make me sad.”

Hearing her talk made me feel sick to my stomach. It was a feeling caused by how bad it is when something little becomes something very big. I didn’t think this would ever happen until it did. That’s when I realized to stay calm and understanding in horrible situations.

Burnt

by Carolena

I was once all in one piece, until the erosion. The universe had made a decision, and that decision was to burn me.

Every day, I sat on the corner of the road and waited for the family of four who lived inside of me. They were always so happy! They cleaned me and even had a collection of rocks right beside my door, but one day, that all changed.

Tension filled the air as the whole population in our small neighborhood created a commotion as the humans frantically ran and screamed for their lives.

An eruption of flames filled the fields and grass. The family of four took one last glance at me and fled. The expressions on their faces filled me with deep sorrow. I felt like I was in an action movie, and I had the impression the situation wasn’t real, but it was.

I’m now no longer a house; I am just a pile of ash. I hope my family is safe because they took care of me when I wasn’t clean and when I had a broken heart.

Past Years’ Winning Stories

Treat?

by Roxie

Treat? Treat? Treat?
I see my owner
in front of the door
that leads to a selection of treats
sitting upon a snow-white shelf.

I lick my lips
in satisfaction
when I see my owner come out
of the small room
with three wondrous
treats in her hand.

But when she sits down in front of me,
I know I’ll have to do a trick to get them.
She begins to have a discussion that sounds like
“Wuzzledazzle” or “Sloppyslew,”
but I know that she said, “Shake!”
So I lift up my paw,
and she gives me the treats.

The thing is this:
Is there really education
behind shaking paws?
Or is it just for me to make
a good impression
on an audience that I’ll never have?

Ball? Ball? Ball?
I have a collection
of balls in the backyard
and no one can find them
but me.
My suggestion for places to hide
round objects is in holes
hidden by tall grass.

My owner’s pups try to steal
one of my precious tennis balls,
but I chase those little animals away.
They must ask for my permission
before ever touching
my precious orbs.
I am the only protection for the toys,
and I take my job seriously.

Well, got to go now.
The cat is trying to start a competition
to see which of us can annoy
the other the most.

Cat! Cat! Cat!

Lemonade

by Loie

“I have the best suggestion ever!” I said with a funny expression on my face.

“Not again!” my best friend, Aria, replied.

“Don’t worry; this one’s not like the rest. It’s bigger, better, and we can make money from it!” I said with determination all over my face.

“Let’s hear it, Lia,” she said.

“A lemonade stand!” I said trying to make it a big introduction.

“Today’s a perfect day! It is really hot, it’s summer, and we can give the money to the animal foundation!” Aria said.

“What are we waiting for?” I exclaimed.

We got permission from our parents and dashed off.

We got a big plastic table, table cloth, and made the lemonade at my house; then we went to Aria’s house, which was conveniently down across the road, and made the sign there because she has a big art studio. Aria’s all about organization, so it was easy to set up.   We finished quickly and went to our neighborhood park.  We put the table up and set up fast.  “Wow! It looks good!” I said with satisfaction.

The population of the park was high. That meant more customers! Our first customers were two kids about eight. They gave us a dollar, even though the lemonade was 25¢. We told them that, but they let us keep the extra, and we didn’t argue. We had a lot more customers until everyone at the park had lemonade. I started to put on some Taylor Swift music, and Aria and I started rocking out because Taylor Swift was our favorite. It turned out, everyone at the park liked Taylor Swift, too, so they started dancing with us! It was one of my all-time favorite moments.

Eventually, everyone left and we started to clean up the collection of dirty cups people had left around the park. After we finished, we went back home to count the money and to give it to the animal foundation.

“25.50!” Aria said.

“That’s a lot of money!” I declared.

“Yeah! Let’s get my mom to drive us to the animal shelter to give them the money.”

“Okay!” I agreed happily.

We got to the animal shelter with the money in an envelope. We both ran in and gave the director the money. “Thank you, girls. The doggies and kitties will be very happy!” she said like we were two, even though we were both eleven.

“I’m glad we could help,” I replied, pleased.

Menagerie

by Genevieve

The brown-haired girl reached inside of her desk to pet her kitten. The kitten meowed in delight, and the girl quickly shushed it.

“Fauna, what is the answer to this equation I wrote on the board?” Fauna’s teacher asked.

Fauna looked the board then at the entire class who was staring at her. “Uh,” she responded.

“Fauna! Can you estimate the cube root of 19,683?” hollered Fauna’s teacher.

“31?” Fauna guessed. “Um, also, I thought we were working on adding fractions with the same denominators.”

“Yeah, that was yesterday; this is the introduction for the exponents course,” the teacher grimaced. “Subtract four and you have the answer.”

You take a moment to pet your cat and everything gets really hard, Fauna thought to herself. “26,” Fauna finally answered.

“No, you subtracted five not four. These are not the expectations for your grade, Fauna, you’re in sixth grade now. You should know these kinds of things,” the teacher turned away to call on another kid whose hand had been raised for about nine minutes now.

I hate math, Fauna decided.

Fauna raised her hand. “May I have permission to go to the bathroom?” Fauna asked.

Teacher nodded and Fauna bolted out of the classroom with her kitten following close behind.

“Why do I even have to go to school?” Fauna screamed. She was in the bathroom complaining about all of this to her tiger, her kitten, and her spotted hyena.

“May I suggest something? Don’t care about what they think or say,” her kitten meowed.

“Thanks, Clover, I appreciate it, but that’s not what I’m worried about.” Fauna had a dim expression on her face. “You started meowing in class like you always do, someone in my group glanced over at me for a second, and they gave me a look like ‘weirdo.’”

“So?” the tiger, whose name was Neptune, said.

“They could have found out that I keep Clover in my desk!” Fauna started panicking.

The hyena started to chuckle. “And they didn’t see Clover running out of the classroom with you?”

“Be quiet, Darius! Ugh, I’m going to go back to class. I’m sure they miss me,” Fauna sarcastically said, and it was clear the discussion was over.

Much later in the day, Fauna cried out, “This isn’t a bitter competition!”

“No! You’re just slow! You always carry around that giant backpack with a giant grin like you own the place!” shouted Fauna’s old friend, Britney.

“I, I—” Fauna was shocked. Her backpack was where she hid Clover and her otter, Pi.

Britney, a few other kids, and Fauna had been all racing each other happily until Fauna was just about to win the race. Then Britney jabbed her elbow into Fauna and pushed ahead, winning the race. Fauna was hoping to become friends with Britney again, but Britney was giving a really bad impression to Fauna now.

Fauna stormed away, but on the grass lay her forgotten backpack, hiding Clover and Pi.

The Neighborhood Games

by Natalia

Every year on our block, we have a competition. This isn’t any competition where we reward the first one to eat a pie, or have a race, or hold a staring contest. In fact, it has all of those things plus more. This year it’s going to be even better than the years before; it’ll be filled with action and tricks. Now, I give you permission to sit back, relax, and enjoy the show.

At the beginning of the games, my family and I have an introduction. Then we have a discussion about the rules and how the games are going to work. We walk through the entire thing. This year the competition took up the whole street! After the introduction and rules discussion, everyone scatters out and warms up for the races. I’m so excited, this year’s going to be great. There is also a huge crowd this year.

The games are about to start. Everyone is lined up at the starting line. My mom is off to the side and yells, “On your mark, get set, GO!” Everyone runs onto the first section which is this: a division problem. I know it’s education, and no one wants to do math, but we thought there could be a fun twist, where you have to use your brain. The problem was this: 137 divided by 3. It took about 30 seconds for the first team to move on. They were the Devil Dabbers.

Next was the pie-eating contest. The Devil Dabbers, which I will now call DD, had a head start. Wait, the Nasty Nae-Nae’s were right behind them! The DD’s sat down and started to eat the pie, and ten seconds later, the Nasty Nae-Nae’s were eating next to them. Those Nasty Nae-Nae’s are very quick at eating because it took them only about 30 seconds to eat that pie. You should’ve seen the expressions on everyone’s faces; they were massively surprised. That puts the Nasty Nae-Nae’s in the lead.

The next course you have to build a tower of blocks that is taller than yourself. These Nae-Nae’s, they are very tall. They may have trouble building the tower. Three minutes later all the teams are there trying to make a tower, except for one team. Those are the Wacky Whippers. They finally make it to the building event. The Whippers actually happen to be extremely short. They manage to build the tower in under five minutes, beating the other teams.

They make it to the last course: The Staring Contest. The Wipers have to wait for another team to build their tower so they can go against them. The first team that arrives are the Quick Quanners. Now, the Quanners won last year in the staring contest, so the expectation is set high for them.

They immediately start. It takes a long time, but you can tell the Quanners’ eyes are starting to water. The Whippers, on the other hand, are doing absolutely fine. Ten seconds later, the Quanners’ eyes blinked, and everyone is super surprised and amazed. The Whippers smile in satisfaction. They have just won the Great Neighborhood Games.

The Case of the Missing Figure

by Nick

Jarrett, like any other nine-year-old, was a huge fan of Star Wars. He had a huge collection of Jedis, but recently, his favorite one by far went missing.

“MOM, my Obi Wan Kenobi action figure is gone!” he exclaimed loudly.

“Okay, I will help you find it,” she said.

Jarrett had a suggestion.Maybe Kai next door took it without permission. If I go over and ‘hang out,’ he might have it somewhere,” Jarrett said suspiciously. It seemed like a good plan with the exception of the little white lie about wanting to hang out.

As though a mudslide had caused deadly erosion, Jarrett darted over to Kai’s house as though he was running for his life. He knew his mom couldn’t help there, so he went alone. He hopped on their front porch and rang the doorbell. He heard the footsteps of Kai’s mom coming to the door. Kai’s mom gave Jarrett some information on the house rules, and he went into the house and saw Kai right there in front of him, munching on chips from a bag of Lays Potato Chips.

“Hey, Jarrett, I just finished all my division problems for the week.”

“Cool,” said Jarrett, but he really didn’t care.

What he really was there for was to find out if Kai had stolen his Obi Wan Kenobi action figure. They proceeded into Kai’s room to play some video games.

“Hey, have you seen my Obi wan Kenobi action figure anywhere?” Jarrett said. He watched Kai’s face to see the expression to tell whether he was guilty or honest.

“No!” Kai said with a guilty look on his face. Jarrett knew immediately that Kai was lying.

“Really, huh, so let’s check your toy box,” Jarrett said, disgusted.

He walked around Kai’s bright green bed. There was tension in the air. He opened up the box and saw Obi Wan lying upside down. Jarrett picked up the figure and slammed the toy box drawer.

“Liar,” said Jarrett. Kai, on the other hand, was completely speechless.

Jarrett felt satisfaction when he found Obi Wan Kenobi. Without any words, Jarrett walked out bedroom door and into the front room, quickly exiting the house through the front door with his Obi Wan Kenobi figure in his hand.

He had finally found his figure and knew Kai was not a true friend. He walked home and turned the bright gold door handle to the left, opening the door. “Mom, I found Obi Wan, and Kai had it all along.”

“That is unacceptable!” she shouted. “I’m gonna have a talk with his mom; that cost like twenty-five dollars.”

“All righty,” Jarrett said, and he walked to his room and put Obi Wan back on the shelf next to the rest of his Jedis, safely home once more.

Dream Painting

by Fiona

“Five minutes left,” yelled the woman over the loud speaker, “Five minutes!”

I hurriedly added color and expression to my piece, people screaming suggestions at me from the stands, and so much action going on around me that I could hardly focus. I only had five minutes left, but I knew I wouldn’t be satisfied until my painting was complete. My work had to win, it had to be published, or else my lifelong dream would be crushed, and so would my career. Not only that, but everyone rooting for me had high expectations for my work, making the tension levels even higher.

I dumped my brush into a can of red paint, and it splashed on the corner of my ocean drawing. I put my head in my hands, ready to cry, but instead I covered the red with the original blue and cried inside for the sake of time. I looked at the clock, thirty seconds.

Noting that my painting was very dull, I added a splash of color and some more detail on the foreground.

“Five…four…three…two…ONE!” yelled the crowd, making it completely impossible to focus on adding finishing touches.

“And time is up!” the woman called out over the speaker as everyone threw their hands in the air, as if they just got caught red handed.

As I looked around, I noticed a variety of paintings. There was one showing a car collision with the residue flying in the air, and another one that was simply color splattered across the canvas. I couldn’t see the last two people’s paintings, but everyone was staring at them in what I assumed was awe, and I got nervous with such tough competition.

We soon walked into the waiting room as the judges had a discussion and came to a conclusion on who won and who lost. We were only waiting for six minutes, but it felt like an eternity to me. When we finally walked back outside, I was really jittery, with butterflies in my stomach as I silently questioned if I had made it.

“It was a tough decision,” sang out the woman, now standing behind a podium, “but we have our three finalists. Sunrise in San Francisco by Jonathan Quentin, Forest in December by Tanner Ridley, and last but not least…” here she paused and looked around at all of us as my knees began to shake, “Ocean Wonders by Kylee Wade!”

Everyone cheered, but I just opened my eyes wide and beamed from ear to ear. I had done it. I had made my dream come true.

Better Health and an Improved Golf Game

by Gracey

As I entered the Kaiser surgery center in Santa Rosa, my arm was aching, just like in many years past. “Twenty years of baseball still hurts,” I muttered to myself. My decision to have an operation was a suggestion from my golfing partner of many years, as he also had the same injury that ruined his rotator cuff over time. With the exception of hockey in my younger years, baseball took its toll over time. I always hoped baseball would be my profession, but building things for important people paved the way to a decent life.

After many conversations with my wife, along with a final lengthy discussion with my surgeon that entailed an long calendar of physical therapy after surgery, permission was granted to go under the knife. A quotation I’ll never forget from Dr. Nyan was this:  “You’ll feel much better when this is all over.”Those words from a Kaiser doctor seemed liked par for the course in all aspects of Kaiser medicine today.

My disposition and this “minor surgery” was a one-way ticket to better health I soon dreamed of, I hoped. On December 2, 2015, I will enter the well-lit room of Surgery B. Hopefully, the conclusion of this surgery will set me on a new path of freedom and flexibility. Who knows, maybe my golf game will get better, and I will have no aches and pains from everyday activities.

We Are Going to Nebraska!

by Julia

“Welcome to the Annual Gymnastics Competition!” one of the judges calls through the speaker. “This year, not only are we going to see the fine gymnasts in their home gym, but we are going to give you a good education about the sport!” My eardrums almost explode from all the cheering.

I don’t show my appreciation for the gymnasts by calling their name when it is their turn on the vault like most people, but I just pat them on the back nicely after they are done. I go back into the warm-up room to see my daughter, Lindsey. That room is a madhouse! I see the different selection of outfits hanging on the closet door; I wonder who made them. The coach pulls everyone together to talk about his expectations and off they go.

The order of events is vault, then bars, then beam, and then floor. The teams race through all the events and we get to the floor routines. My daughter and a girl from the opposing team are up next. The music starts playing and they do their routines. Towards the last half of the routines, they both jump up to the same place and a collision occurs. Both girls fall to the ground as it happens so quickly.

The girl from the other team is really hurt so someone calls out to the gymnastics organization to call for an ambulance. The expression on my daughter’s face is sad because she thinks the accident is her fault and she is responsible for the other girl being injured. The judges tell Lindsey to keep going with her routine. As she reaches the final position, a look of satisfaction is shot my way. The competition has officially ended.

We return to the warm-up room to make suggestions on how the girls could improve. A while later, the coach comes to me to tell me that Lindsey is one of the best gymnasts on the team, and he would like to ask permission to take her to the finals in Nebraska. I look at him in shock, not knowing what to say. “Hey, Lindsey, come here., I would like to talk to you,” I say to my daughter with excitement.

Dust Cloud

by Tarren

One day off the coast of Africa with my squad, Division Dust Cloud, we got information from our commander that there was a large population of terrorists in the nearby town. We had to jump into action quickly; the town desperately needed protection before the eruption of gunfire and explosions of hand grenades.

We took our position and set up to get ready to unleash a rain of hail on the terrorists. You could feel the tension in the air; you could practically cut it with a knife.

Once we got permission to shoot the enemy, the shots immediately rang out; it was like thunder hitting metal. When the battle was over and people stopped breathing, there was a large collection of lead on the ground.

It was sad that so many lives had to be taken, but we did it to protect the town. Back to base we go until we get another call, and then Dust Cloud will rise again.

Halloween Horror

by Ava

hauntedhouseTonight was Halloween, the night of appreciation for ghouls and ghosts all over the USA. I had an enormous selection of costumes. My mom’s suggestion was to be a witch, but I was already that last year. I decided to go as a demon fairy. When I put my costume on, a feeling of pure satisfaction spread along my face.

I walked outside to find my best friends, Violet and Celeste, already waiting outside. I got the impression that they were planning something. Their mischievous expressions glowed as they stood under the streetlights. My expectation was that they were going to force me into a haunted house, which I hate going in, by the way.

“I’m so glad I am DONE with all that homework Ms. M gave us!” said Celeste.

“What are you talking about? I love education!” said Violet. I rolled my eyes as they continued stalling until I finally asked which haunted house we were going in. As they told me, my eyes grew wider. We were going into the scariest, most horrific, freakiest haunted house in the town, the Johnson’s house.

“I AM NOT GOING THERE!” I exclaimed. “YOU CAN’T MAKE ME!” They put on their puppy dog faces. Darn! I can never escape those. As we reached the mansion of terror, I asked my mom for permission to go inside. Unfortunately, she said yes.

When we walked inside, I could see the people who made this haunted house definitely used organization. All the spiders were neatly spread out on the walls and ceiling. Suddenly, a zombie grabbed my leg. As I wriggled free, another one grabbed my arm, and I screamed. Violet, Celeste, and I all ran down the hall and shrieked when a werewolf howled and chased us into the next room. Count Dracula stalked us in his chamber as he got out of his coffin, and a creepy dude with a chainsaw, who jumped out of the curtains, made me leap backwards, and he chased us out of the haunted house.

“Well,” I said, panting. “That was……interesting.”

Violet and Celeste nodded as we grabbed our candy and went home. Then I noticed a dude with a chainsaw following us.

I screamed.

Halloween Surprise

by Olivia

trick or treatOn a cold, dark, and foggy Halloween night there were people of all ages collecting candy from house to house.  I asked my mom for permission to go trick or treating because it was so dark and spooky-looking outside. Not only that, but in the dark, all of the Halloween lights looked much scarier.  When my friends, Neena and Marika, arrived, we commenced our Halloween trick or treating at a giant-looking haunted house.  Actually, most of the houses in my neighborhood had very scary decorations.

We transitioned from house to house in my neighborhood, searching for the perfect full-sized candy.  However, perceiving really quickly that all the houses had run out of candy left us with the curiosity of wondering why my neighborhood was candy-less.  We all had stunned expressions on our faces when we realized that all the candy was gone in only two hours. Marika and Neena had suggested that we try a new neighborhood so we had a little discussion between us to decide which neighborhood we would try.

We ended up walking to Neena’s neighborhood. It was like a small town, and we had big expectations that we would score a lot of candy.  Unfortunately, we were wrong and soon disappointed because every single house was out of candy. Each house that we went to that was out of candy just added to our disappointment.  After walking to several houses, the three of us looked at our collection of candy, and all together, we only had three pieces of candy!

We finally stopped and realized that we should try Marika’s neighborhood. On the way, we saw another really creepy haunted mansion.  Even though we were scared, we really wanted to get some more candy.  So, as we crept along the rough, uneven pathway to the house, we just focused on the treats we might receive. When we got to the front of the old, beige door, there was a gigantic cauldron full of all types of candy that you could imagine! You can imagine how big our eyes got!  We started to gaze in awe when we saw a sign on the cauldron saying, “Take All.”

We were so excited that we just started grabbing handfuls of candy. By the time the cauldron was empty, Marika, Neena, and I all had the same amount of candy.  When we got back to my nice, cozy, blue house, we started to pour our piles of candy out in my living room.  Then all of a sudden, we had a marvelous idea…to make some Candy Angels.   We nestled in our huge piles of candy and made the “Candy Angels.”   We all loved the feel of the rough wrappers, the smell of the delicious candy, and the sound of the crunching, crinkling papers.  Who knew that my treat-full night would be such a great Halloween surprise!

Eruption

 by Riley

volcano bestHere I was at the peak of a volcano in Hawaii. My friends and I were 800 feet in the air looking at the dark, deep crevices in the mountainside. We had great appreciation for the beautiful scenery when we looked down below us. My friend, Spencer, had to ask permission to come with us to Hawaii. The transmission on our car had broken down on the way up to the volcano. We nearly had a collision with another car when we stopped dead in the middle of the road. We had to call AAA to come help us get our car started.

Anyways, my friends, Spencer and Ben, and I were having a competition to see who could get closest to the crater of the volcano. Then Ben decided to walk up to the center of the volcano and look down into the crater. Smoke blasted up into his face, and I yelled, “Ben, RUN!” He bolted out of there as quickly as he could and started tumbling down the volcano! Spencer grabbed him and found that he had broken his arm. Ben grimaced in pain when Spencer touched his right arm while stopping his fall. I went back up towards the top to see that there was black smoke rising up out of the volcano.

There was a lot of tension when I told everyone that we had to get down the mountain as fast as possible. We started running down the mountain when we looked up to see a huge eruption rising above our heads. I’m surprised that we weren’t killed right then and there. There were huge amounts of cinders and ash flying above our heads. While I ran, I saw a river of lava start to form and slowly drift down the volcano. We were in a bad position, and we really needed to find protection. Once we got down the volcano, we threw ourselves into the car, and I told my mom to step on it! We got out of there just in time and chose to just go home.

I gave a suggestion to never go to the top of a volcano and look into it! We were very lucky that we were all okay, with the exception of Ben’s broken arm. When we were at school and people asked how Ben broke his arm, we got to tell this whole story all over again.

Let It Rip!

by Jackson

robotIt used to be a sport; it used to be for fun, but now it’s serious. Everyone wants to join this violent competition. Scientists, doctors, parents, and kids my age fight with robots; yes, I said robots. The robots go into a ring and one leaves. The person controlling the winning robot gets the money. I’m talking millions of dollars, and I am determined to win.

I sit in my room, preparing for what is yet to come. Tomorrow I sign up for the competition and fight in the arena. My friend, Robert, and I are a team. We often stay up late tinkering on our robot, adding anything and everything to make him a fighting machine. As we labor, the expression on my face is excited. Tomorrow, they choose who will fight.

I pick up my phone and call Robert. “Hey, want to finish up our robot?” I ask.

“Yeah, sure,” he says.

***

Robert arrives, toolbox in hand. We rush up to my room and haul our robot into the center. We bolt into action. I screw a laser onto our robot’s eyes, and Robert adds gold to the hands to make them heavy. We make the decision to stop working on the robot, and I go to sleep shortly after.

I wake up tired. I grab a can of spray paint and spray the robot. I go to town hall to put my name on the sign-up list, and then I go to the arena. The announcer picks up his microphone.

“In this corner, weighing in at 800 pounds, we have Ambush! And in this corner, weighing in at 750 pounds, Lightning!  Ready? Fight!”

“May I make a suggestion? Do the chest slam,” Robert says. I grab my controller and chest slam him. I do a left uppercut, followed by a quick jab. He throws a haymaker, but I duck, sweep kicking him to the ground. I pick the robot back up and throw him down on the ground. I pick him up once again, throwing him in the air, and I punch the top of his head. I stand over him and pull his head off. I thrust it in the air.

I’m going on to the next fight. There is a small selection of fighters, but there is still the champion, Zeus. He scares me, but I won’t worry about him now. I have to fight Midas. He is gold, has a Mohawk, and is a good robot. I step into the ring with satisfaction that I have worked my way up to the champion of the first division. I jump into the ring and throw a punch at his head. I punch his chest so that he flies back. I throw him into the air, punching the top of his head and finally ripping it off. I’ve won the finals. The championship is here, and this is where I will have a collision with Zeus.

I hop into the ring and slam my fists together.  Then Zeus hops into the air, probably fifty feet high. There is an eruption of applause. I can feel the tension around me. I throw an uppercut, but Zeus catches my fist and throws me back. I jump up, knocking into his head and making him stumble back. I lean forward, making a powerful blow to Zeus’s chest. I throw my hands back and slam them into his head, stunning him, and then I throw him to the ground. When he falls to the ground, I pick him up by the arm and pull. I can see my robot smoking. If I do not win this, I will lose my chance at the money. I pull the arm straight out and swing it back, making contact with Zeus’s head. I repeatedly hit him with his own detached arm. Then I swing a punch at his head, knocking it off. I give Robert a high-five.  Now we are millionaires. Two kids have beaten several adults. This was our dream to win, and we did it.

Life as a Vet

by Daniel

animated-gifs-doctors-04

So, here is my introduction.  It was a day like any other day.  I was going to perform an operation on a dog.  The expression on the owner’s face when I told her how much the operation would cost made her eyes become as big as softballs.

My profession was in the field of veterinary care for dogs and cats.  I had a discussion with the dog’s owner.  My suggestion to her was not to feed her dog after 8:00 p.m. that evening for the surgery was scheduled for the next day.  After diagnosing the dog, my conclusion was that the dog had a rare form of cancer, but before I could perform the surgery, I had to get permission from the owner.

After observing the dog and giving things much consideration, I made a decision to recommend to the owner that if the surgery was not successful, to put the dog down.  I knew that the owner was going to take the news in a very bad way.  Her disposition was sad, but incredibly kind after I spoke with her.  I decided to perform the surgery the next day.

The owner then said, “I’m sorry, but I can’t pay you.  My house is built on a mountain that has formed an erosion problem, so I gave her a publication of a book about putting your dog down.  I marked in quotations what the owner should read. After I put the dog down, I could feel the satisfaction on the owner’s face, knowing that her beloved dog was no longer in pain.

Raindrops

by Bailey

rainDark clouds fill the sky,
The rain attacks my face viciously,
The expression that shines on me,
Is happiness, pure joy.
A smile of satisfaction breaks through
The hard surface of my face
Moist drops collide with my boots,
The sun omitted from my rainy equation,
I oppose the suggestion of an umbrella
I expect the rain to be endless, and it practically is:
And as the sun competes with the clouds,
I can’t help but appreciate the raindrops that fall,
Organized
in the perfect formation,
And I never want it to end.

The Formidable, Horrible Teacher

by Faith

Okay, so I have my English homework and my math homework, at least I hope I do because Ms. Erosion is going to confiscate everything I own if I don’t bring those pages of work.  I thought it would be my suggestion as to my treatment if I forgot my work, but you don’t even want to stick up for yourself in class because this teacher is that mean to you.

“Hey, you! Peter Permission, stop talking this second or you will be going to the office with a detention slip; you got that?” hollers Ms. Erosion.

“Sorry, without exception, I will never talk again without your permission. I am truly sorry,” I reply with a frog in my throat.  I have never had a teacher who yelled at me this much, but I’m pretty sure she is getting us ready for seventh grade.  She always gives me weird facial expressions, and I just smile back like I don’t even notice.  I do not want to keep being nice to her, but my mom says I have no decision to make about showing respect to my teacher, whether or not I like her.

“Does anyone have any questions that I have not yet answered,” screams Ms. Erosion.

I raise my hand because none of her math explanation made any sense to me or anybody else.

“How do you subtract fractions? I think you skipped that lesson,” I utter.

“Oh, yeah. I guess we will have a discussion about that even though you should already know this,” replies Ms. Erosion.  Finally, the obtuse lesson is over, and it is time for grammar. Yeah, not. Ms. Erosion always hollers at us for asking a question.  After the hollering about how we should have already learned about subtracting fractions, I look over my grammar homework and see that I have forgotten the quotation marks. That is a gigantic mistake. Then I also realize that my introduction is a complete fail.  Ms. Erosion comes to my table where I am trying so hard to explain why I did not do the homework correctly, but she grabs the paper out of my hand.  I know I am in for a rude awakening!

I spy on Ms. Erosion so I can see her face when she sees my paper.  When she comes to my work, I am shocked to see her face in total satisfaction.  I look again to see if it is truly my paper, and it is.  I am so happy to see her write an A+ on the top of my paper; I think that is my very first A+ this year!

As I am thinking about my success and walking toward the pencil sharpener, pandemonium breaks out as the teacher is all nestled up in her seat at her desk.  My class is beginning to become out of control just because Ms. Erosion is quietly talking with another teacher.  I just ignore everything and return to my seat with my pointy, petite pencil in my hand so I can begin writing about the first time I got an A+ grade.

Candy

by Dylan

trickortreatIt’s Halloween night
and I don’t need permission,
to go on a mission,
of great satisfaction,
in hopes of no oppression,
and with frightening expectations.

 In the division of labor
of carrying pillowcases,
we sift through the population
of candy savvy kids
with whom we have much competition.

 In the selection of the first house,
we put on ghastly expressions
to make a scary impression
for an eruption of sweets
and corrosion of teeth.

On November 1,
after a night of many terrors
and tension when walking up to houses,
I guard my candy just like a collection
in the position of a tiger,
with the exception of trading.

I’m thinking if I should
make the decision,
to sell my candy,
for money to use
in the pursuit of an education.

Ruby and the National Dairy Show

by Carsyn

cowAs Ruby received permission to go into the show ring, you could tell by her facial expression that she was as nervous as a child learning to ride a bike for the first time ever.  She backed up to ask her mom a question about Mary, Ruby’s Holstein cow. “What if Mary doesn’t even place?”

Ruby’s mom, Julie, made a suggestion.  “Think positively, not negatively, and trust me, I know she will place.”

Let’s back up in the story a bit.

I t was the day before the National Dairy Show.  Every dairy cattle owner was going to attend it, and Ruby Safeway was one of those owners.  However, Ruby had to have a long discussion with her parents the night before the show to see if they would allow her to attend.  Her parents finally came to the decision that Ruby deserved to go to the show.

When Ruby was preparing her show box and had checked off everything on her list, she came to a conclusion about competing.  “Mary and I could win this, and if we do, we would win one thousand dollars and a tremendous trophy, too.  We should try to win this.”  Mary mooed her agreement.

When the sun went to sleep, and the moon awoke, Ruby was lying on her bed fast asleep.  Ruby had only one expectation, and that was to win Supreme Champion and of course, one thousand dollars.

The next morning it was a rush.  Everything was going by so quickly, with the exception of the two-hour long truck ride to the show.  Once Ruby and her mom arrived, they checked in and got settled.

“Ruby, why do you look like you’ve just seen a landslide disaster caused by erosion?” asked Ruby’s mom.

“Mom, I am so nervous.  I feel like a doctor just did an operation on my stomach,” replied Ruby.

“You’re going to be okay.  I promise,” said her mom.

Once in the competition ring with the finalists, Ruby was walking slowly enough for the judge to look at her and Mary.  The judge pointed straight at Ruby and Mary to start the line.  Ruby knew exactly what this meant; she had won it all.  When Ruby hugged Mary, she said, “I love you.”

Ruby’s heart was racing as she grabbed onto her mom.  Ruby was so happy.  Then she went to get her winning rosette, and of course, her check for one thousand dollars.

Geology or Humanity?

by Ian

volcano bestEver since I was a little boy, I had been blown away by the information on volcanoes.  I had a collection of pictures of volcanoes, so when I grew up, I researched them for a living.

In my job, I would find out the exact position of the volcano.  I would research the type and composition of rock that made up its foundation.

There was great division among my peers; some scientists believed that studying the rock and lava was helpful, but in the case of an eruption, we would need to take urgent action; otherwise, pandemonium would break loose!

They believed that protection of the population was the most important thing.  Okay, let me think…rocks??? People??? Rocks??? People???  Hmm…they might be right!

Why You Shouldn’t Ask

by Lily

“Oh, no!” I thought to myself.  “I really have to go!”  I remembered drinking a lot of water the past few hours, but I didn’t think it would be this bad!  Finally, I had the guts to ask Ms. Profession if I could go to the bathroom.  Luckily, she said yes, but unfortunately, there was one exception related to gaining permission to leave in the middle of class to use the bathroom.  Ms. Profession insisted on giving you a suggestion, and she called it the “Profession Suggestion.”  It was always this:

“Look at your peers.  Do you see anyone else asking to go to the bathroom?  No. So I would suggest that you not cause any further pandemonium during your next biology class.  Understand?”  Then you always had to answer, “Okay,” and then she would have a discussion with you after class for your “inappropriate” behavior, and you would be late for your next class, and then that teacher would hold you at the end of class, and you would get in trouble at your next class, and on and on and on and on until the day was over, and you just ended up receiving F grades in every subject.  Then you would really regret your decision, and you would receive no satisfaction from your choice, AND you could never, ever, ever find ANY positive conclusion for your acts.

Now, let me tell you this.  Ms. Profession has a very, very strict disposition, and she has always been that way, and she will never change.  She will always tell you to change you facial expression or to take that look off your face, whether she likes your facial expression or not.  She’s just weird that way.  She does it because she likes to make children feel bad.  So there are all the reasons why you should not go to the bathroom during any class whatsoever.  I think you can see why.

Oh, and P.S., Ms. Profession also makes you write a five hundred word essay on why you needed to go to the bathroom and why your bladder felt like it would explode and why it will if you do not urinate after you drink water.  So, it’s simple.  Just don’t ask.

Do Not Become a Teacher

by Ian

Stop that!  Do that!  Being a teacher is the worst job ever.  Here is a suggestion:  Never become a teacher.  Last year was my first year teaching at Really Boring Elementary School.  I taught third grade, and in third grade, you have to teach your students about erosion in science.  I cannot tell you how bored I was teaching my class.  I do not think my students liked it at all either.

In tedious English, I had to teach my students where  quotation marks go.  In writing, I had to teach my class how to write a conclusion.  I am pretty sure I didn’t teach it very well because only two people understood it.  Math was probably the worst, though, because I had to try to teach my class about the order of operations.  It was really bad because that is what I struggled with in school, and to try to teach a class of students something you do not understand is pretty hard.

I hate field trips, but one of the parents complained to the principal, so I had a discussion with the principal, and he told me I had to have at least one field trip.  I was not very excited, but I scheduled my class’s first field trip to Little Town Farm.  On the day of the field trip, only a few kids had turned in their permission slips.  Instead of canceling the trip, I made the exception that the whole class could go on the trip, even though they did not all have their permission slips.

When we arrived at the farm, it was gloomy out, and it looked like it would rain any second.  Then, suddenly, it really did start  to rain.  Pit, pat, pit, pat went the rain as it hit the brown, muddy ground.  Boom went thunder as a yellow strike of lightning hit the faded, red, ramshackle barn.  The whole barn caught on fire, and the farmer told us we would have to cancel the trip.  I was fine with that, so I gathered up my class, and we headed back to school.

That year, my class had a bad disposition when it came to learning.

I hope after reading this, you understand why you should never choose the profession of teaching.  It is terrible!!!

Treasure

by Grace

Early morning light streamed though Peter Smith’s window. Dawn had broken in the magnificent Kingdom of Lindsmor, creating a golden glow about the castle. It was a perfect day for Peter to set off on his quest!

Peter woke abruptly as honey colored light danced across his face. He narrowly missed hitting his head on the low ceiling as the events and his promise of last night came back to him. He had to leave now! The expectation of gold and riches was too great. Quiet as mouse, Peter began stuffing a cloak, a crust of bread, and even though the intensity of the words of the riddle had burned an impression in his brain, he hurriedly brought the map, too. Hastily, Peter wrote a quick note to his parents telling them he’d be back that evening. The wooden door clicked shut as Peter headed to the wharf to fetch himself a boat to go to Hang Man’s Isle, the place where his treasure lay!

As Peter plodded along the dusty road to the wharf, he wondered if he’d have any competition for the treasure, and he mulled over the thought of bringing a knife just in case, but decided against it. Soon enough, he arrived at the docks. Just as a fisherman was heading off, Peter jumped, and landed with a soft thump, nimble as a cat, aboard the vessel. Then he crouched behind some nets to wait until the shabby boat passed by Hang Man’s Isle, where he would jump off. While the boat crawled along, Peter ran over what he knew. Organization was very important during a quest, also being calm, and……………..

A few minutes later, Peter found himself, dripping wet on the abandoned shores of Hang Man’s Isle, but extremely pleased with himself. Now all he had to do was find the treasure, wherever that was! The map was so faded, it only proved useless. ‘At the place the traitors had to pay,’ the words of the rhythm drifted through his mind. The gallows! Peter immediately set off on the well-worn path the prisoners took, marching towards their death.

Peter knew he was nearing the gallows because of the amount of collisions he had with wild dogs corroding  bones with their ravenous chewing. Each of the dogs had given him a reproachful glance, but all of them had been too busy to attack him, for which Peter felt grateful. Finally, Peter came to a single gallows with a hole dug in the earth underneath it. Peter prayed a quick prayer of thanks to the dogs, whom he was sure had dug the hole in searching for bones. Inside the hole lay an ancient chest. With trembling fingers, Peter lifted out the box and pried open the rusty lid…..It was just as the stranger said! There were heaps of glimmering gold and pouches of rare and precious gems of all shapes and sizes! This was more than enough to make his family happy and for him to get a proper education. Yet, Peter felt a feeling of omission; Peter had to do something to let this island know he appreciated this gift. He dug into one of the pouches and pulled out a large diamond and set in the hole. Feeling satisfied, Peter set off for the shore, happy thoughts for the future in mind.

Halloween Cupcake Competition

by Shaina

“Oof! Sorry,” I grumbled as I left the collision where I bumped into the lady getting her canned soup. I was getting all the ingredients I needed to make for Frankenstein cupcakes for the Haunted House Extravaganza for school the next day. There was to be a competition to see who could make the scariest cupcake, and I was determined to win. Now I needed to get all the ingredients necessary for the other monster cupcake I would bake! I selected all kinds of yummy goodies such as Jelly Beans, M & M’s, Fruity O’s, and more to get the judges impressed.

Arriving at home, I scattered all the ingredients and materials out on the counter top and the baking began!

Step 1:
Get permission to use the stove.

Step 2:
Get suggestions for how to make the Frankenstein cupcake look gruesome.

Step 3:
Plan the decorating and put expression-filled faces on the cupcakes!

Step 4:
Don’t do things that would be expected.

Step 5:
Bake!

Ding!  I heard the timer ring, and I ran to the stove and pulled out the muffin pan. I put all the finishing touches on both the cupcakes and voila! My cupcakes were a success! I was glad I used my organization skills by making steps to follow. I hoped it would be enough to win the judges over.

A couple hours later, I set my cupcakes down onto the snack shack table and stood behind it as the judges passed. My heart was beating vigorously as I stood behind the tables watching the judges come to a halt. I heard a sound of oohs and ahhs. Had I given a good impression? Scribble, scribble, scratch! They wrote down some notes; then passed by.

Later on, it was time to announce the contest winners! There were to be a first, second, and third place winner. “Third place is…..Rebecca Augustein for creating a grave stone cupcake. Congratulations!” I heard one of the committee judges announce.

“And second place is…..Julia Robertson for creating a white ghost cupcake. Congratulations!” another judge exclaimed.

“Now, finally the moment you have all been waiting for. First place is….Janie Jorgenson for creating two scrumptious looking cupcakes: one as gory Frankenstein and the other, a cute candy monster! Congratulations!” I heard the voice of the last committee member as I raced up the steps to receive my medal.

“Thanks so much! I appreciate you choosing me as first place winner!” I exclaimed joyously.

I had such a great time! It was definitely enjoyable seeing all the cupcakes and getting 1st place! I loved the medal I got because it was another keepsake for me to relish, even though it was only plastic.

Detention!

by Diana

“All right, students, quiet down!” Ms. Pod shouted as she plopped paper on her desk and ended our discussions.

“I have something very exciting for you this day,” she said with a smile and satisfaction in her voice.  “Today, you will all be writing a two-page essay on why you should behave better, on making better decisions, and on your disposition in school,” she explained as she passed out binder paper.  The expression on all of our faces came with a “huh?” and a lifted eyebrow.

“In addition, you all also have to include an introduction and a conclusion.  This essay must be on my desk…hmm…my suggestion would be a week from now.  For an exceptional grade, work hard.”

“Wow,” I uttered quietly to my peers as Ms. Pod gave me a glowering look.

“Oh, before you all leave, the students who are in my science class fourth or second period, some of you still need to turn in your permission slips,” she yelled as everyone exited the classroom.

Once Upon a Princess

by Kelly


There one was a little girl named Kinderella. Kinderella was sweet and lovable. She was a princess, but only lived with her father, the king, who was just like Kinderella. They lived in a castle far, far in the woods, with lots of wildlife around, so Kinderella would play with the animals all day. Kinderella was not like any other princess; she did not like to have her hair look fancy. She didn’t like to wear dresses, and she went to school and was treated like every other student. She thought it was wonderful!

One day, disaster struck. The king was outside getting tomatoes for dinner that night, and there was an earthquake. The earthquake caused erosion and a rock slide down the hill, big rocks and small rocks tumbling down. The poor king was swept away and had to be in the hospital. The doctors told sad Kinderella that her father would be fine, but they would have to do an operation on him.

Sadly, the doctors didn’t know anyone else to call, but her mother. Kinderella’s mother’s disposition was horribly mean. Her profession was a school teacher, and she was a MEAN schoolteacher, and no students liked her at all. Every time someone would ask Kinderella about her mother, she would say “mother,” and put her fingers up to show quotation marks, saying she didn’t really think of her mother as her real mother. When the mom did live with Kinderella and her father, and her mom would read fairytale books to her, the mom wouldn’t read the conclusion, so she would never know the happy ending, just the bad one. The saddest thing is, that Kinderella couldn’t even remember the last time she had a real discussion with her mom.

Unfortunately, her mother made the exception to baby-sit Kinderella while her father was in the hospital. Kinderella was scared, what would her mother think of her?

Whoosh! The door opened to the hospital and in came her mother who looked formidable in her dark black dress. “Let’s go!” her mother said very rudely.

“Okay,” Kinderella uttered while running for the door to catch up with her mother. By the time Kinderella got back to her house, she had to get away from her mother. “Mother, do I have permission to go outside?” she asked.

“I have a suggestion: Why don’t you not talk so much?!” her mother said scornfully.

Kinderella wept in her hands outside. Just then two soldiers walked up to Kinderella and gave her a letter. Then they stalked off toward the castle. Kinderella quickly started reading the letter.

Dear Kinderella,

I would never leave you alone with your mother.

Take care of yourself, and I will be back tomorrow.

I’m sending the soldiers to kick her out.

Love,

Father

Kinderella watched her mother leave the castle. Kinderella nestled up against a tree and sighed with happiness.

WARNING!  True Story…

by Camille


Warning!  This is a true story, and to this day, it still exists…

I have a suggestion for you, and I think it would be the best to follow.  Do not! And I mean do not disobey your grandma because you think she is lying.  I will tell you that if your grandma has a grumpy disposition and tells you not to go down to her mysterious forest, A.K.A. the backyard, then don’t do it!  She just tells you it’s because of all the poison oak.  Poison oak, what a joke!

It all started when I planned to hatch an operation that would give me permission to go to the mysterious forest, A.K.A. backyard.  The backyard was under a grizzled eroding deck.  Under that deck, I could barely make out a quotation saying “Enter if you dare.”  Who knew what was hiding?   You probably wouldn’t want to know because you would be afraid of a gruesome monster snatching you down into its chamber and eating you alive.   But, actually, there is only a slim chance of that happening.  I, Camille, would go down to that forest and observe the whereabouts of anything that would ever dare live down there.  There was only one thing keeping me away from that place… My grandma!

“Grandma, why can’t I go down to the forest?”  I moaned.

“There is poison oak, and I am not joking,” said my grandma in a serious enough tone to almost make me stop nagging her.

“Well, can we at least have a discussion about it?” I squealed.

Soundlessly, my grandma picked up her soda can and fled to the couch.  As she turned on her daily CNN television channel, I caught a glimpse of something.

I skedaddled downstairs and to my wonder, my grandma was trailing behind me.  “Whoa! What are you doing?”  I said in a frightened tone.

“I just wanted to see what you were doing,” my grandma retorted.

I responded with the first thing that popped into my mind.  “Umm…frogs,” I said.

“What?” my grandma asked.

“You know, frogs in your rustic, broken hot tub.  I’m going to catch them.  It is my profession, actually,” I said in a tone that would convince my grandma enough so that she would leave.

“Frogs, huh? Well, all right.  Come back in at twelve for lunch; there will be no exceptions, and we will have deviled eggs.”

As soon as my grandma left, I ambled toward the screen door that led to the hot tub.  Whoosh!  The dirty water splashed as I lifted the top.  Ribit-ribit, the sound of frog surrounded me as I reached toward their slimy bodies.  Sliurp!  Sliurp!  I turned around and quivered out, “Who’s there?”  Sliurp!  Sliurp!  “Okay, you got me; stop playing around,” I sneered.  Ribit!  Ribit, I heard as one of the frogs was bobbing toward the narrow railings of the deck.  “Wait!” I screamed.  R-I-B-B-I-T was the faint sound of the frog falling through the railings!  My petite hand reached out for the slimy creature.  Then I heard, Cree…ack, as the rail broke.  “AHHH!” I screamed as I tumbled toward the unfathomable forest.  Kerplunk!  Cree…ack!  This was the sound of my ankle as it broke in two.  Was this it?  Was this the conclusion of my life?  Where was I?  I thought wondered to myself.  Then it finally occurred to me that I had stumbled into the mysterious forest, A.K.A. the backyard.

To be continued…

Survival

by Lilah

Splash, splash, splash!!!!!! The sound of my verdant and water-filled boots stomped along the vibrant path where another critter once galloped along before. My eyes foggy, my clothes grew huge on me as I lost more and more weight, my expressionless face, zombie-like. This was not my decision, not my thinking at all. What I had in mind was that I would go on an exploration in search of the rare salamander, to write an essay from introduction to conclusion about them, and to earn enough money to get an operation for my tumor in my spine. As you see, my profession was great until my camera crew all fell off a cliff and died while taping a waterfall. Life is now a surviving, dead, disappointment…

I walked and walked until I could not walk anymore, and then I tried to find a stump or a rock or something like that to place my tired bottom on to rest.

“Ah, ha!” I yelped with satisfaction and insanity as I sat down finally. CRACK! The stump crumbling away with water erosion fell into the ground. I was totally sick of this, period! The next day would be survival day, which meant I would devour some food, stay toasty warm, and get the heck out of there.

That morning after unwinding from my sleep, I got up and went in search of food. I soon found some: berries (learned these were not poisonous in survival class last summer), some plantains (huge bananas), tasty plant roots (not sure what plant root). Then I tried to build a fire (that did not work to well). Out of my terrible luck, I found no lightning struck branches or anything. Now it was time to leave, as I had learned from survival TV shows, to go out into the open and make some kind of huge sign that said “SOS” or “HELP.”

I made my stone sign and sat back, waiting hopefully.  It worked! A large helicopter saw me and came down to the moist earth and picked me on up. They fed me and gave me some hot chocolate and water. They also warmed me up with a super soft blanket.

I soon returned home and started back on track with biology. I got permission from my doctor to get my tumor removed and taken care of very well. I now will live my life happily and never go to the jungle again.

A Sad Story

by Brooklynne

“Dad, are you ready for your surgery?” I questioned my dad.

“Sure,” he said moving his fingers like they were quotation marks.

Some part of me felt like he was being sarcastic, and the other part of me felt like he was telling the truth. Really, my dad didn’t take this surgery thing too seriously. In fact, he was just sitting on the couch, drinking Coca Cola, and humming a song that I had no idea he even knew.

“Dad, I don’t thing drinking soda one hour before you heart surgery is a good decision. Well, I mean, you can, but I don’t think that was the doctor’s suggestion for what to do before your operation.”

“Oh, don’t worry about me. I’ll be fine; it’s just heart surgery. It’s not like I’m going to die or anything,” he said in conclusion.

“Yeah, sure, okay,” I murmured

One hour later after we settled in the hospital, I looked up at the clock that read 12:00. My dad’s surgery had just begun. To be honest with you, I was kind of nervous for him. I mean anything bad can happen when a doctor is taking a saw, cutting open your chest, finding your heart, and taking out all of that slimy redness. Even if I’m overreacting just a little bit, I think it still sounds dangerous. Nonetheless, the last thing I needed was getting these crazy ideas about what could happen in the operation room.

As I was just sitting in the chair reading a book, I heard a sudden panic coming from my dad’s operation room. I heard the doctor say something like, “I need another nurse pronto! We are losing him fast.” And that’s when a frantic look came upon my face. I didn’t know what to do; my mom had gone to the drug store to get my dad’s medicine, so I fell to my knees and cried like I was a baby who lost its pacifier.

As soon as I gathered myself, I finally had the courage to look in the operation room to get a clearer look at what was happening. Usually you would need permission to go in while they were operating but I didn’t care. As I walked across the panicky threshold, I saw that the monitor showing my dad’s heartbeat was a straight line. At that very second, I saw the erosion of my dad’s life flash before my very own eyes.

When my mother came back, I cried the news to her. That’s when she fell to the floor bawling her eyes out. I don’t think I have ever felt this sad in my life. I had no idea what to do. I guess I just have to make the adjustment of having no dad.

It was two years later, and we have had a few discussions about our life without dad. I know we will always be a family with a disposition of sadness. However, you always have to look on the bright side, thinking of sorrow as the exception. I mean, at least I’m not making professions about how easy it is to live without a dad, or someone who has no idea how to live without a dad, and at least I still have my mom. But Dad always had a special place in my heart, and I will never forget him.

The Old Mansion

 by Bjorn

Once there was a girl named Katie.  She was tall, blonde, and had green eyes. Katie had been hearing lots of conversations about one of the old mansions on the tallest hill in her town being haunted. “I hear the old mansion is being haunted by a couple who died there mysteriously,” said one of the girls in one of the many groups at a gray lunch table in the cafeteria at school.

After school, Katie went and got her friend, Amber, to talk to her about the mansion.  Amber was a little shorter than Katie, and had brown hair and hazel eyes.  She and Katie were both fourteen. “Amber, we need to talk about the mansion. We need to see if all the talk about it being haunted is true,” said Katie.

“Are you kidding me? We’ll die in the first five minutes!” screamed Amber in her high pitched voice.

Their discussion went on for hours, but in the end, Katie won the argument, and in conclusion, they decided to go to the mansion after school to see if the rumors was true. When they met up, they both had flashlights, and the sun was setting, making an extravagant sunset off in the distance.  They tried to open the front door, but it was locked. “Got a suggestion on getting the door opened?” asked Amber as she fiddled with the door. All of a sudden, Katie charged toward the door, knocking it off its hinges. It seemed forcing open doors could be a profession of hers.

They turned on their flashlights and started to wander the large, dusty rooms looking for signs of ghosts. When Katie turned around, Amber was gone. Katie started searching everywhere for Amber, but she was nowhere to be found. Katie went into a living room to take a break, when all of a sudden the door slammed behind her. Creeeaaaak! Creeeeeaaaak! Creeeeaaaaaaaaaak! There was a sound of footsteps coming down the hall towards the door. Not knowing what to do, Katie locked herself in the closet of the room and nestled the flashlight under her arm.  She heard moaning from outside the door, and there was no exception to be made. It was positively true there was a ghost outside the door.  Katie was in a terrified disposition, and she didn’t need permission to leave, so she got out of the closet and busted the door open.  Then she bounded down the oak wood hall.

As she ran, she knocked over a painting of a stone building, worn down from erosion and ran out the front door. Katie ran to Amber’s house, and there was Amber.  She was in her room doing an essay the teacher had assigned about why she didn’t use quotation marks in her writing.  Amber was acting like the whole operation hadn’t happened—like there was no ghost. “Where did you go and why did you leave?” Katie questioned.

All Amber did was shrug and say, “What are you talking about? You never showed up!” Amber replied.

To this day, they never found out what happened at the old mansion.  Nonetheless, the girls were now convinced that the stories they had heard about were true.

Sally’s Operation

by Talia

Crash!  Crash! The rocks and dirt went falling down the cliff next to the ocean.

“As you can see, the attempts to stop the erosion of the cliff have failed,” said the news reporter.

Click. The screen went blank as Sally turned off the T.V.  Sally wasn’t very happy.  In just an hour, she was going to have an operation to have her tonsils taken out.  Then all of a sudden, someone opened the door.  In came Sally’s big sister, Joss.

Joss came in because she wanted to tell Sally that she had a suggestion.  Her suggestion was to eat a lot of ice cream after her operation, with the doctor’s permission of course.

“I’m a little nervous though,” said Sally.

“Don’t worry, your doctor is very good at her profession,” said Joss.  “Your doctor also has a nice disposition.  I had a discussion with mom, and we came to the conclusion that even though your throat might hurt, you will feel better after you have your tonsils removed.”

Then someone else came in.  It was the doctor.

The doctor said, “Your parents and I made the exception to the ‘no dessert before dinner rule’ so that you can have ice cream for dinner after the operation.”

Sally was thrilled to hear that.  Then, “Oh, there’s one more thing.”  Joss dropped a pile of papers on Sally’s lap.

“What’s this?” said Sally.  Then Joss said, “It’s your homework.  You have to put quotation marks where they belong in these stories.”

Sally sighed and said, “Aw, man…”

The Big Green Project

by Casey

“Mandy, please give your report,” requested my teacher.

“Well, last week I wrote my report on Recycling and Reusing-”I tried to ignore the fact that about five people groaned when I said this, and three of them were my friends: Jessica, Courtney and Sarah! “Anyway, I have a suggestion. If we recycle our paper, plastic, and glass, they can be reused. So, I say if we could have students participate in this project, we can make the world a better place!” I could tell nobody was interested, but I had an idea. “However, the student who recycles the most stuff will get a free ice cream trip during lunch, and the winning recycler can bring along two friends!” My entire class was applauding. This was going to be a hit!

“No! This could not be happening, everybody likes the idea!” I protested.

“I’m sorry, Mandy, but the school can’t afford this. It’s been decided. Good-bye,” said Principal Richard. Ugh, all that hard work for nothing after we had that discussion. This was not fair. The rest of the day just went kind of slowly; everywhere I went there were some kids complaining. I felt awful, and then it got worse.

“All I remember is falling and hitting my head,” I told Nurse Carmen.

“Well, you probably just fainted from the heat; I’ll get you some ice. You have some leg damage, too. Let’s hope you don’t need an operation,” she replied.

In the back of my head, I heard a voice saying, “No, Mandy, there is no better news; I’m afraid we’re going to have to close down the school.” I was replaying the conversation I’d had earlier with my principal.

“No!” I shouted back at my principal. “You can’t close the school; I love it here!”

“I understand that, but we are losing money, and we can’t make up for it.”

After that I had zoned out, paying no attention to Principal Richard, as he told me this whole long, painful story about school funding.

About a week later, my room was piled high with bags of plastic, paper, and glass recyclables. I had come to this decision after my injury and my talk with the principal. I was collecting all of this stuff for the recycling center by my house, where if you turn in your recyclables, you get some money in return. I did this without permission, but it was worth it. I thought I had enough stuff for my satisfaction, but was that enough to save my school?

***************************************************“

“Congratulations to Mandy Parks, who raised enough money for new textbooks, office supplies, and more. I have come to the conclusion that this school will not be closing anytime soon!” said Principal Richard at the assembly. I was overjoyed by this. I had done it. I was so proud, and the expression on my face showed that as well. “Mandy will also go to ice cream tomorrow at lunch with two friends. This trip will be for these three only, with the exception of me, who will be chaperoning, with your parents’ permission of course. Mandy, you should be very proud. What will you do now?” he inquired.

“Relax!” I replied. Who knew helping the Earth and saving the school could be so tiring?

The Explosion

by Kayla

One drop, two drops, three drops. “STOP!” I screamed to my lab partner! This was a very important science project. You had to make your own creation. I had asked permission to be with my best friend Stacy. Our lab teacher, Mr. Humblebee, did assign us to work together, but that was a mistake. I thought Stacy’s dream profession was to be a scientist, but unfortunately it was not. I was like a volcano ready to explode when she was about to put the wrong ingredient into the test tube.

It was kind of hard to push Stacy away so I could do some of the experiment. I did try to give her a suggestion to take a break, but she pretended like she could not hear me. Finally, she moved aside and let me explore my science side.

I felt like I was playing operation because you could get buzzed or move on to the next piece. Our discussion was vicious now depending on your choice. I could tell Stacy was mad at me. I did not care, though. Our chemicals were sliding into others until all of them were combined in the same test tube. We waited for something to happen, but surprisingly, nothing happened. I felt like I was in a horror movie, when an explosion of lightning is going to hit. Stacy said, “We’re all going to die.” I knew by her disposition she was probably lying, but how could I be sure.

Mr. Humblebee repeated a famous quotation that morning before we began our experiment. He said, “Well, a scientist may explore anything.” Remembering this, I realized that we could do anything with our chemical reaction experiment and that there are often exceptions to scientific rules. With this in mind, I added one more drop to the project just as our teacher walked by to grade us. Suddenly, our experiment exploded.  It was fantastic! “A+,” Mr. Humblebee said as he watched, and that conclusion was my favorite of all!

The Rainy Day

by Kennedy

Day 1

“Ready for the competition tomorrow?” Renee asked.

“Of course I’m ready,” April replied.

“Okay. We’ll see you tomorrow,” Renee whispered.

April McDonald had been horseback riding for four years at Crystal Clear Farm. She was excellent and had worked up to her teacher Renee’s expectations. Somehow today, however, Renee’s melancholy expression gave her the impression of disappointment tomorrow. Before April went home she stopped at another horseback riding place to ride for an hour.

“No, no!” yelled the trainer. “You must not allow opposition and position yourself directly opposite from the other horse; otherwise, you will have a collision.”

“Okay, sorry,” April said.

Clearly this trainer had no appreciation for her skills. Finally, it was 6:30 p.m. and time to head home. As April walked out to the car, past the fences with corrosion on them, she thought about the day. She had taken two lessons and an educational quiz on jumping. She was tired and fed up with being yelled at. Before she shut her eyes, she organized everything for tomorrow. This came easily to her because she had excellent organizational skills. Then she drifted off to sleep.

Day 2

It was 6:00 a.m., and April ran to the table. She ate breakfast in a hurry. There April blabbed out everything about the competition to her family and told them there were no omissions. All the great riders were going to be there. She was so excited!

Finally, it was time to go, and everyone got dressed and left. When they arrived at the competition, they looked for Renee and her pony, but she wasn’t there. Maybe she was late, thought April.

The arena was huge. It was outdoors and had jumps at every corner. Then the small specks appeared on the ground!

“It’s sprinkling,” her mother said.

“Well, it will stop,” April replied nervously.

However, the spots started to grow, and then it started to hail and rain. The grounds were soaked in a minute.

“The competition is cancelled,” the announcer said.

April’s wet face frowned. She had to go home, and now she knew why Renee’s face had a sad expression on it yesterday.

“Honey, let’s leave,” April’s mom whispered.

“Okay,” April replied.

“We can do it another day,” her mom comforted.

Then their family tread off back to the car.

A Sundae on Sunday

by Kyle

I was so excited because today I was going to go and get ice cream! I ran and leaped into the car. Then we drove off to the ice cream shop. We arrived at the ice cream shop and I ran inside. There were hills of ice cream as far as the eye could see. There were so many colors and toppings I didn’t know which to choose. I walked around trying to find the right ice cream to choose. Then, finally, I had made my decision. I chose rainbow sherbet. I asked my mom for permission to add toppings, and she said yes. I started the sundae-making operation by getting three scoops of ice cream. Then I added the deluxe choice of toffee and sprinkles for toppings.

I took my ice cream to the counter to have it weighed. It weighed a total of one pound, three ounces. I took my spoon and dug into the dessert causing erosion in the center. It is hard to describe the amazing taste of my ice cream, but I will try. For my introduction, it tasted sweet and very enjoyable. The expression on my face was fixed on the goodness of the ice cream. I was seriously considering a profession as an ice cream store owner while I was eating my ice cream. There was a suggestion box in the store so I wrote down my suggestion that vanilla should be the number one ice cream flavor of the month.

I finished my ice cream with great satisfaction. It was my conclusion that the ice cream was delicious, and I would consider going that ice cream shop again. Then I read a publication in the newspaper about the ice cream shop, and in the article, there were quotations from people who loved the ice cream. The article was about all the good ice cream flavors that the shop had. It also talked about the best ice cream flavor of the month, which was vanilla. The cashier of the ice cream shop had a calm disposition, even though the shop was very busy. I talked with the cashier for a while, and during our discussion, a little boy dropped his ice cream cone on the floor. The cashier did not usually give re-fills, but in this case she made an exception and gave the boy some more ice cream.  The cashier was a little nervous about giving the free ice cream because she feared an act of oppression from her boss.  I decided to get a pint of ice cream to go and left the ice cream shop in a great mood.

The Competition

by Meghan

One day when I was walking around the neighborhood with my friend, I suddenly stopped to a terrific sight. I saw a sign advertising a talent competition!  My friend and I ripped the paper off the pole and ran to show my mom.  My mom agreed that I should enter.  What was even cooler was that my mom was responsible for the organization of the event.  I had a good expectation that I could win this contest.

Finally, today was the day.  I was going to make an excellent impression on the judges.  When we arrived to the competition location, I observed amazing things.  I saw people doing magic tricks, singing, dancing, and performing skits.  At that moment, I knew that this would be tough.

First up were some really peppy cheerleaders.  For their act, they created a human pyramid.  Soon there was a huge collision of cheerleaders crashing onto the ground.  Next up was a little boy singing about education and school.  The whole audience seemed to have very little appreciation for his act, with the exception of his mom.  All of a sudden the lights shut off.  The janitor of the building said, “The leaking rook has caused some corrosion leading to this brief power outage.  Sorry.”

There was a huge sigh of relief as the lights turned back on and the event began again.  Now it was my turn to perform.  I was dancing to a popular song.  I finally finished my dance, and when I was done, I anxiously waited for the big announcement.  My mom let me help judge.  My opposition to the boy’s act surprised my mom.  Now I had to go wait in the bleachers.  When the announcement came my jaws dropped open wide and I was surprised.  I had won!

Rainy Day

by Shelby

It was a stormy day on Henry Way.  My friends and I got permission to ride our bikes to Wiseman Park.  As we arrived at the park, erosion of the hill was causing the hill to give out and a large pile of mud was forming.  My friend, Tiffany, made a suggestion.  She said, “We should all ride down the hill and jump our bikes off the pile of mud!”

I said, “NO WAY!  That is dangerous!”  But Tiffany’s disposition is not gentle.  She is a tough girl who likes a challenge.  So we pulled our bikes off the path and had a discussion.

The rain was pouring down on us, and we needed to make a quick decision.  With a few exceptions, we usually don’t fight about how we are going to do things, but this time I was not going to back down.  I was not riding my bike down that hill!  Ashley, Brittany, and I decided to take the long bike ride around the park.  Tiffany, on the other hand, decided to ride her bike down the steep hill.  We were so nervous for her.

As she took off, her expression was priceless.  Her eyes grew large, and her scream was piercing, but she had done it!  The satisfaction that she felt was indescribable.  We  met Tiffany on the other side of the park.  We gave her a huge hug, ran through large puddles, made mud pies, slid down the slide, and swung on the swings.  This is the conclusion of a perfect rainy day spent with very special friends.