Sunday, April 22, 2012

What is your favorite cookie? I love sugar cookies! I'm actually making a batch right now. ;)

Monday, April 16, 2012

Station to Station

Here is yet another short story I have written. This one is historical fiction set during the Civil War period.

Station to Station
          Hello, my name is Sara Browning and I’m sixteen years old. Ever since I was ten years old, my house has been a station in the Underground Railroad. I remember waking up in the middle of a night to the back door slowly creaking open to some "cargo". That was five years ago. Now, I help my mother with the escapees. She had no choice but close the station when my father died. When I found out, I convinced her to let me help.
          Just the other week, we got a note from John, our conductor. He had broken his leg while tripping over a hole in the ground, and I was to be the conductor until we could arrange for someone else to come. It was a shock to both my mother and me. Mother almost said no, but after I pleaded the case, she relented.
At 7:00pm on Friday evening the house was chaos, although anyone who looked at the small, modest house from the outside wouldn’t have known. I was just about to walk out of the door.
 Mother chided, "Don’t forget your jacket. You most likely will need it."
I briefly thanked her and stepped into the cool September night. I walked briskly on the purposely overgrown path down to the river bank.  I was to do something to show the runaways I was a good person.
"There will be a little clearing with a rock at the edge,” John had said, “Kneel down there and sing Amazing Grace. That is their sign to come out of hiding."
When I did everything he had said, a black woman and her two children stepped out from behind a few trees to my right. I guided them carefully back to the safe house and concealed them in the hiding place.
I led them to the secret cupboard entrance and just as I was about to leave to get some food for them, the woman said, "My name is Mary an’ dese are my chillen, Sam and Harry. We jus’ want to dank you for what yer doing fer us."
I knew right then I was doing the right thing.
That evening while Mother and I were sitting by the fireplace sewing blankets, we heard a knock at the door. We glanced at each other as Mother hesitantly opened the door. A heavy built, dark-skinned man stood at the doorway. He looked as if he was about to push Mother aside so I got up and stood behind her.
He said "My name is James Austin and I have a pass to search your house for runaway slaves. Will you kindly let me in?"
We had no choice but to open the door for him.
While he was rummaging through our bookshelf, another man walked in and said, "James, times up."
Mr. Austin turned and said to Mother, "I’ll be back tomorrow."
We had to think quickly and decide how we were going to get them to the next station.
"They need to go tonight," stated Mother.
I suggested that we take them in the old wagon. After all the little details were arranged, we started preparing.
Around midnight we hurried Mary and her two children in the back of the old wagon. We spread some blankets over them and started down the bumpy road. At one point we thought the rickety wagon would fall apart, but it stayed together. When it was about three o’ clock and we were two miles from the next safe house, we heard a horse coming our way. When it came close enough to where we could see the rider, we could tell it was the slave hunter we saw previously. Inside my mind was going crazy. I had to keep telling myself over and over to stay calm. Mother did all of the talking so I didn’t have to speak. Mr. Austin inquired where we were going and why this time of night.
Mother replied, "We had a last minute blanket order and our customer needs it before his store opens up in the morning." Mr. Austin scrutinized my mother’s face and rode on.
Even though Mary and her children made it to the next station, my job did not end there. They were only one of many groups we have to smuggle under the noses of people like James Austin. I know this kind of work is very dangerous. If we get caught, we get imprisoned or fined. It is still worth it to help other oppressed people find freedom. I know I will do this as long as I have to.

Tell me what you think below!           -Leigha

It Takes a Boy

Remember that story I said I would post? Here it is. Finally. :)

 It Takes a Boy
“Alfred,” Mrs. Myers screeched for the sixth time that day, “Stop it!”
As always, 11 week-old Alfred paid no attention to what she said and kept on rolling in the elderly lady’s late husband’s ashes. Once again he had slipped through the bedroom door behind her back while she was cleaning another one of his messes.
“This dog is hopeless,” she thought, “I don’t know how long I can keep this up.”
The little puppy had gone through four owners already, each intending to keep Alfred as his or her own dog, but the Corgi’s troublesome energy had forced each of them to give him away.  Mrs. Myers had seen him in the local animal shelter and like the others before her, had taken pity on him. She had thought this was a phase that would pass but finally decided she just could not keep him.
Mrs. Myers slowly walked to her new little cell phone lying on the small cherry wood side table in the spotless living room.
“Let me see,” she mumbled while she pondered on what her daughter had said on how to use cell phones. “Ah.”  She dialed the animal shelter. “Hello? This is Judith Myers. Yes, the one who took home the cute Corgi. I’m sorry but I just can’t keep him. What? Why can’t you take him back? Well, thank you anyway.” After she hung up, she turned around. “Alfred!”
11 year-old Benny Somers felt he was going to burst with excitement. He was finally getting his own dog today! His dad had found the puppy in the Pennysaver.
“Hurry up, Daddy,” he hollered. “I want to go get my puppy!”
“Don’t be in such a rush,” Mr. Somers told his son.
“Did you remember to grab the collar from the shelf,” asked Wilma, Benny’s mother.
 In a few minutes they were on their way to Mrs. Myers’s house. All the way there, Benny was tidying up the back seat to make room for the dog.
Ding-dong! “Hello. Are you Mrs. Myers?” asked Henry Somers.
“Yes. I suppose you must be Mr. Somers,” replied the clearly worn out lady.
“Is Alfred ready to pick up?”
“He’s right in there.”
On the way back, Benny cradled the puppy in his arms.
“Alfred sounds too old,” he said, “Let’s call him Alfie.”
So it was decided then and there that he would be called Alfie. When they arrived at their home, Alfie was uncertain of what to expect. He didn’t want to upset his new owners, but he did want to explore his new environment. When Benny put him down, he took off toward the chicken coop and ran back and forth along the fence line scaring the poor chickens. Benny could clearly see there was work to be done. He ran up to Alfie and made him sit.
“Sit. No chickens for you.”
Back inside the house when Alfie was safely penned up in a kennel, the Somers talked about things that would have to be done in the near future.
“First, we’ll have to take him to an obedience class,” said Benny.
“I think you’re right,” acknowledged his dad, “I heard they’re having one next week. I’ll sign him up.”

“I hope he will be easy to house train, considering his previous owners didn’t do that great of a job,” interjected Benny’s mother as she walked into the room.
“It can’t be that hard, Mama,” remarked Benny, “Besides, I’ll help.”
“I don’t know, it’s harder than it looks,” she said dubiously.
After a couple weeks, the Kids ‘N’ Pets carpet cleaner became the household’s favorite product, and Alfie was showed much improvement in his behavior.
“Alfie, you’re such a good boy. Come on, let’s go see if Mama has any snacks for us. I’m getting hungry,” Benny said as they tramped across the yard into the kitchen. After they got their snacks, they ambled over to the long retention pond to play fetch with Alfie’s favorite blue tennis ball.
Benny and Alfie spent day after day together. Benny grew up, and went to college; Alfie grew up with Benny and passed on while Benny was away. Even today, Benny will tell you that bad behaving Corgis can be trained, and he will tell you a story about a little puppy named Alfred that came home with him that nice, summer day.

Hope you enjoyed!    -Leigha


If any of you didn't know (though I'm pretty sure you do), I'm homeschooled. I do virtual school (bio), co-op (English), and just regular home schooling (all the rest). At my co-op, I take English 1 during third (of four) period. During first period I help my mom in the nursery and during second period, I help Mrs. Erica in Preschool. Today I'm going to share with you some pictures I took of Oliver, the little boy in the nursery. He was adopted from Russia and we know his mother was half-Korean and it is assumed she was a prostitute. Thankfully, he is growing up in a good Christian home. :)

:) -Leigha

Thursday, April 05, 2012

Bridal Showers

Recently, I've had the privilege to photograph Stephanie Rule's (church friend) Surprise bridal showers. It was tons of fun! I put together a slide show if any of you want to watch. If you're in a hurry, just skip to the part where she walks in. It's at 3:40.

Mrs. Laura Buchite for putting the event together
The Rogers family for the pretty decorations
And of course the photo and video credits are me. :)
The background music in the video is from Jennifer Hall's CD, Fairest Lord Jesus.