Monday, June 29, 2015

Mintz Houses

Julia has filled me in a bit more on the Mintz's living conditions lately.

JULIA: Mom?  I always imagine that the Mintz's house was built in 1791, so, like, it has a PARLOR.  They don't really MAKE it a parlor, but it used to be a parlor, and one time, Jessica asked Jastina: "Where's Lilly?" and Jastina said "In the parlor," and Jessica said, "We have a parlor?!?"

So the Mintz must live in some sort of historic manor like this:

I guess if you've got as many kids as the Mintz do, you need a heck of a lot of space.

Meanwhile, I learned more about the homes of some of the Mintz's relatives today.

JULIA: Mom?  The Mintz's cousins, who live across the street? Their house was built in the 1300s!

And this brings us right back to yesterday's post about Madeleine's drawing of "an American."  Apparently the Mintz's cousins live in this kind of home:

I wonder if the Mintz kids, lounging in the spacious parlor of their luxurious colonial home, feel bad for their cousins all crammed into the wigwam across the street.

Sunday, June 28, 2015

The Broken Printer

MADELEINE: Mama?  Do we have a printer?
ME: No, honey, our printer is broken.
MADELEINE: (sighing in disappointment) Oh.  Because Mama.  I was thinking about those pictures of Americans that we printed that we could color in.
ME: Do you want to draw a picture?
MADELEINE: Uh, yeah, maybe I'll draw a picture.  Mama?  I'm gonna draw a picture of an American.

Here's her picture of an American:

Apparently she was thinking of Native Americans, which led me to wonder why she was reminiscing about the Thanksgiving pictures we had printed over a year ago.  I mean, I would have thought, given the fact that the Fourth of July is quickly approaching, that she was thinking about the Stars and Stripes kind of Americans.  I decided to delve further into her thought process. 

ME: Madeleine, what was making you think about Native Americans?

MADELEINE: Well, I was thinking about, like, Thanksgiving stuff...
ME: Oh, I see.
MADELEINE: And Mama?  What comes BEFORE Thanksgiving?
ME: Uh...Halloween.
MADELEINE: No.  Mama.  RIGHT before Thanksgiving.
ME: What do you mean?
MADELEINE: What's RIGHT before Thanksgiving?
ME: Um, Julia's birthday?
MADELEINE: No, Mama.  Like.  What's the DAY.  What comes before Thanksgiving.  What's the day BEFORE Thanksgiving?
ME: It's just a regular day.
MADELEINE: No, Mama.  What is it BEFORE Thanksgiving?
ME: Well, there's no "Thanksgiving Eve" the way we have with Christmas. 
MADELEINE: No.  Mama.  What is it right before Thanksgiving?
ME: I don't really understand what you mean.  What are you trying to ask?
MADELEINE: Like, what season or holiday is it before Thanksgiving?
ME: Well, Julia's birthday comes right around-
MADELEINE: (who CLEARLY does not view Julia's birthday as anything of interest) NO.  MAMA.  What SEASON OR HOLIDAY.
ME: Well, Halloween is the nearest holiday before Thanksgiving.
MADELEINE: (satisfied) Oh.  Halloweeeeny!
ME: Why?  What is making you want to know what comes before Thanksgiving?
MADELEINE: (irritably) Because.  Mama.  You were asking me what made me think about Native Americans.

Wait.  THAT'S why she was asking that completely obtuse question of me?  It's MY doing?  I asked her why she was thinking about Native Americans and that made her desperately need to know what's right before Thanksgiving?  (And then reject the very same answer that she then accepted later in the whole interrogation process??)  I should have just kept my mouth shut and saved us both a good chunk of time spent talking in circles.

I don't know about you, but I am pushing thoughts of Halloween and Thanksgiving far from my mind and focusing instead on the fact that we are now on summer vacation!  But wait.  What's BEFORE summer vacation?  What's the DAY BEFORE summer vacation?  What season or holiday is it?  If anyone knows the answer, feel free to answer in the comment section!

Friday, June 26, 2015

Father's Day and Birthday Gifts

For Father's Day this year, I created a reusable grocery bag with pictures of the girls on it as a gift for Ethan.  I'd figured I would give just the one gift from all three of us Rowe gals, since Ethan is not a fan of receiving stuff for the sake of receiving stuff.

However, the girls happened to accompany Auntie Shannon as she ran some errands on the day before Father's Day, and at one of the stores they visited, there was a craft center where kids could create a Father's Day fish.

Yes, that's right, a fish.  A construction paper fish attached by string to a wooden pole.  Because that's what every father wants, right?  Especially Ethan, who does not go fishing and who does not care for ornamental pieces of ANYTHING cluttering up the house.

So, on Father's Day, Ethan opened this gift from Madeleine and managed a half-hearted, feigned enthusiasm:

Where, oh where will Ethan put this delightful piece of art?  The possibilities are endless!

Ethan then turned to Julia's gift, and in the middle of unwrapping the paper, because wise to what was inside.

ETHAN: Wait.  Another fish?
JULIA: (sheepishly) Sorry, Daddy.

Behold, Ethan's SECOND paper fish attached to a wooden stick:

Just what he always wanted!!

At any rate, the girls decided to go about Ethan's birthday differently, each making their own individual, unguided craft that speaks more to Ethan's interests.  (Or, at least Julia kept Ethan's interests in mind.)

Madeleine was so delighted with her two-sided picture for Daddy that she even wrapped it herself. 

Side 1:

"To Dad"

Not only did Madeleine draw Christmas trees, but she even wrapped this picture in Christmas wrapping paper, because she knows that Ethan LOVES all things Christmas.

Side 2:
"Love Madeleine"

MADELEINE: Mama?  I didn't feel like drawing PEOPLE holding the jump rope, so I decided to draw GHOSTS instead.

Julia made a whole book for Ethan, with drawings based on the fantasy series he has been reading her at bedtime:

Julia Rowe

Among the various charactors Julia decided to bring to life through art were:

Ce'Nedra, the Dryad, who also happens to marry the protagonist and become queen.

Polgara, the wise old sorceress, and Garion, the main character, who is apparently suffering from some sort of swollen hand disorder.

Errand, the little peasant boy who turns out to be a God, and Belgarath, the wise old sorceror (who really does utter the words "Garion next time don't say 'push!' in the book.  But not in a creepy context.)

Durnik, the man who is resurrected from the dead and becomes a sorceror in his own rite, and who is apparently wearing a very soggy diaper under his trousers.

The back of the book is the sweetest part of all:
"I love you!  Love, Julia"

Needless to say, Ethan was touched by these much more personal gifts and appreciated them greatly over decorated, pre-cut fish.  Way to go, girls!  You actually managed to make the world's grumpiest gift recipient a little bit happy!

Wednesday, June 24, 2015


Tonight, after turning out Madeleine's lights and giving her the customary bedtime snuggle:

ME: Good night, Madeleine.
MADELEINE: Good night, Mama. (flipping over to face me in her bed) Mama?  The REASON why I said "Mama" so WEIRD sounding was because...I was trying to decide whether to say "Mommy" or "Mama."
ME: Oh.  (thinking about the fact that she nearly always calls me "Mama," despite my referring to myself as "Mommy.") What do you like so much about saying "Mama?"
MADELEINE: Because..."Mom" is...basically, like, TOTALLY for older kids to say.  Like, for TEENAGERS.
ME: But I'm just wondering why you like saying "Mama" more than "Mommy."
MADELEINE: (thoughtful) I think...probably because it's just EASIER.  "Mama" is just drop your mouth TWO times.  "Ma."  "Ma."
ME: Oh, okay.  I see.  Well, good night, honey.
MADELEINE: Good night, Mommy.

I guess that time she decided to take the more difficult route and go with "Mommy."

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Sprinkler Fun Gone Awry

The girls were having a blast in the sprinkler this afternoon:

That is, until Julia was, in her words, "trying to write all the symbols for Writing Workshop and Quiet Reading" on her fingers before getting to this gate:

Now, you might think the impending fence-crash would stop one from running, even if she hadn't finished writing on her fingers, but, alas, not in this case.  Julia wound up slamming into the gate, slipping on the wet grass, and falling onto her back with both legs through one of the gate slats.  Much wailing and sobbing ensued.


I mean, I get it.  Writing the symbols for Writing Workshop and Quiet Reading - whatever that means -  is super important, right?  Some might even argue that it's worth risking a body-plant into a metal fence in order to finish counting them all.  But, looking back, was it REALLY worth the cuts and bruises on Julia's shins to throw caution to the wind in order to finish her count?  Could the finger-writing have possibly continued on her round-about back through the sprinkler?  Or could she have WALKED through the sprinkler to allow herself more time before reaching the fence?    

I guess we won't know the answers today, as sprinkler fun has been halted, although, thankfully, the injured party seems to be up and about on two working legs once again.  And *hopefully* we have learned a valuable lesson about what to do next time one is fast approaching an iron fence.

Monday, June 22, 2015

Song of the Sea

Yesterday, as a Fathers Day family activity, we Rowes snuggled up with bowls of popcorn to watch the movie "Song of the Sea."  The movie is based upon Celtic legends of the selkie, and its main character is a little girl named Saoirse who turns out to be a selkie.  In order to connect with her true selkie powers, she must wear her seal coat:

Madeleine was especially entranced by the movie, and has gone full-out obsessed with the whole selkie thing.  Needless to say, Madeleine is now Saoirse:

Yes, despite the 90 degree weather today, she has been wearing her hooded poncho sweater in an attempt to imitate a selkie coat.  Whether she's outside in the brutal sunshine, eating froyo at the Orange Leaf, or just hanging around the house, Madeleine is channeling her inner selkie and refusing to go back to human form.

While Madeleine clearly has Ireland on her brain, Julia has other locations in mind.  Today, inside the math folder she took home from school, I found this math work she had done:

List five different city names.  Use the chart to determine which one has the highest value.

1. New York
2. Boston
3. Mexico
4. New Jersy
5. Caimbrige

This is the first I've heard of Mexico and New Jersy being cities.  Wow.  Guess I need to refresh myself with some geography lessons!

On another note, tonight the girls are trying out the town track and field program for the first time ever, so we'll see if I can convince Madeleine Saoirse to ditch the poncho, at least while she's running and sweating...

Sunday, June 21, 2015


Madeleine decided to attempt a hand-drawn replica of this photo, hanging above our fireplace:

What do you think? Pretty spot-on, right?  It's hard to tell the drawing from the original:

Little did Ethan know he was marrying into a family of zombies.

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Madeleine as Mickey and Minnie

Among our junk mail this week was an invitation to apply for a Disney credit card.  Included in the envelope was a faux cardboard credit card, which Madeleine immediately adopted as her own.

Next thing I knew, she was putting on an elaborate performance that she asked me to video tape.  I believe she was playing three different roles: a) the woman handing over her credit card as admittance to the movie theater, b) Mickey Mouse, and c) Minnie Mouse.

Wow!  That was some show.  I would totally hand over my own credit card to get to see that in the theater!

Friday, June 19, 2015

2nd Grade Poems

Today, Julia brought home a box full of classwork from throughout the school year.  Included in the work papers was a set of poems, and I'll share some of my favorites here.

 Fly Fly by Julia

"Fly fly, soaring high. 
While you see me passing by.
Dancing on the sun,
which is so fun.
Dancing on the moon
in the afternoon.
Fly fly, soaring high.
You will see me zooming by.
This way that way, here too!
I will zoom with you!

It's the final "woo" that does it for me, man.  Hits you like an exclamation-point punch of poignancy.


"I have a great house up high on a hill
I do a cartwheel on the window sill.
A house has a chimney, a house has a door
and a house has a roof.
We look through the window, we peer out the door.
To surprise we have to crawl on the floor.
And in our house there is a mouse.
And there is a hole in our house with a lot of mice.
Our house is big and your house is small,
but really, the size does not matter at all."

This one is very Dr. Seussian, though it's missing his perfect balance of rhyming meter. '

And for the record, it's great that your fictional, poetical house is big, but I think I might opt for the small house instead, if the small house does NOT have a mouse nor a hole with a lot of mice.  And, really, to be honest, I'm also fine without the death trap that is cartwheels on the windowsill of a house that is high on a hill.

Prized Popsical

"Your cold, your sweet, your delisous,
this is what you are.  Your a popsical.
Red, orange, any color will do. 
As I spend my days licking and eating you.
I find myself in a tangle of words that I can't describe,
but of course all the words are about you, my delisous popsical.
I look at you and then I see I have a great destiny!"

WOW.  This is some SERIOUS poetry.  A tangle of words?  A great destiny??  (I do hope that part of her destiny is learning the difference between "your" and "you're".  Maybe in 3rd grade.)  Who would ever have thought that the experience of eating a popsical could be so profound?!?


"Point is always sharp, you always make me smart.
Your yellow and shiny, and you've got a nice eraser.
You make me smile,
all the while
I wright on my great math sheet."

Yeah, my pencils always make me smile, too.

What I Like About My Ice Cream by Julia

"I can feel you, I can see you, I can taste you.
I love you, ice cream.
Your great to lick, 
You never make me feel sick!
I cream, I love you!
I love you alot!
I can't live without you, 
I have not forgot.
Please do not leave me.  
Please, do not...
Now you have left me and I miss you alot."

I like the Shel Silverstein vibe to this poem, with the sardonic ending.  
I guess the ice cream eating is not as epic an experience as the popsical one.  The empty ice cream cone leaves her feeling sad, while the popsical stick gives her visions of her great destiny.  

I have a tangle of words in my head right now as I contemplate all of this insightful poetry!

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

The Rowe Girls Variety Show

You never quite know what you're going to get when your kid says this:

JULIA: Mommy!  We prepared a SHOW for you, so can you come downstairs and VIDEO it?

Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Gallopy Galloping Girls

Since Madeleine wants to do EVERYTHING that her big sister does, it is no surprise that she has now taken to doing Gallop Time through the living room, down the hallway, and back.  However, today was the first occasion on which Madeleine decided to gallop WITHOUT Julia having started it first.  In this instance, I was giving Julia a piano lesson, and we had this distracting thumpiness going on in the background:

Julia had trouble handling the fact that Madeleine was galloping, but not because it was breaking her concentration at the piano.

JULIA: Mommy!  I don't want Madeleine galloping!  *I'm* the one who MADE UP galloping, and I don't want Madeleine doing it ALONE!

Now, while Madeleine is clearly imitating her sister in actions, she is not necessarily doing so in thoughts.  It turns out that Madeleine, unlike her sister, does NOT think about the imaginary Mintz family while she gallops.

JULIA: Madeleine??  What do you think about when you gallop?
MADELEINE: (delightedly) Nothing!!
JULIA: (disappointed) Oh.

Cheer up, Jules.  YOU'RE the one who made up the Mintz, so at least you don't have to worry about Madeleine thinking about them ALONE.

Monday, June 15, 2015

More Art

Madeleine's artwork isn't creepy at all.

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Swim Meet

Madeleine and Julia got to swim in a casual, inter-team meet today; Madeleine's first meet ever!  While she may not have been the fastest swimmer in the pool (and was, in fact, the slowest), it was pretty exciting to watch her give it a shot.  The youngest swimmer by at least two years, she got to try out the race atmosphere without the formal rules and disqualification for imperfect strokes that accompany the in-season meets. 

She started the meet off with a 25 yard freestyle:

Madeleine's second and final event was the backstroke:

Julia swam three events, only one of which I got on video, since it was her first 50 yard event, complete with flip turn:

And lest you think the girls are getting TOO grown-up with their abilities to swim independently, I can assure you that they can turn back into two-year-olds in the blink of an eye.

Madeleine, upon being asked by the head coach how she liked her first meet, felt that the appropriate response was to pat the coach on the cheek and then take playful bites out of her hand.

Julia discovered that she had left her clothes, her sneakers, her goggles, her swim cap, her shampoo and her conditioner in a locker at her last practice, which was on THURSDAY.  It was also, not coincidentally, the first time I didn't help her out in the locker room, since I had to leave early and go to Madeleine's end-of-year preschool picnic.  Julia was in charge of her own locker room responsibilities and met Ethan in the lobby afterwards.  Clearly, she didn't even stop to realize any of that stuff had been missing over the past three days until she stumbled upon them in a random locker today.

So, despite their growth on the swimming front, we obviously still have some work to do...

Saturday, June 13, 2015

More Classwork

Also in Madeleine's take-home preschool classwork.  What on earth is a parent supposed to make of this?!?:



Friday, June 12, 2015

Madeleine's Journal

Madeleine is no longer a preschooler!  She celebrated her last day of school on Wednesday, and got to bring home lots of class and art work to share with all of us.  Among such classwork was a weekly journal, in which she drew pictures and then dictated, and later "kindergarten-spelled," a description of what she had drawn.  Here are some highlights:

Ah.  Just what one would expect in a preschooler's journal.  A picture of an alien spider, a chair, and a door that hits people with the doorknobs.  Madeleine's artwork (and descriptions) are never, ever slightly sociopathic at all.

"This is the smiley page with green scribbles."

I am going to be seeing that smile in my nightmares.

"I am jumping on the moon."

It's interesting that she is not wearing a space suit as she does so.  Maybe this confirms my whole idea that Madeleine comes from a different planet.  In this case, she apparently inhabits the moon with no need to breathe oxygen or protect her body from the elements.  And she has a blue face.  And what is either blue hair or four long blue fangs coming from her mouth.

Oh, well here's a normal one: "It's the Zombie's birthday.  Her favorite color is red and that's why her balloon is red."

The reason why her favorite color is red is because that's the color of blood.  

I am sensing a theme here.  "This is an alien bouncing on the moon."

"This is Twilight Sparkle writing.  It says something she learned about friendship today."

This is just pure laziness.  What are you going to draw in your journal today?  A bunch of wavy lines. 

Well, now. Finally a post that is not about aliens or moons or scribbles.  "I am at Rosemary Pool for free swim.  It is only open in the summer."

Ah, post "Pirates of the Caribbean viewing."  I like the spelling attempts here.  'Tes Cabden Jac Sbaro" translates to "This is Captain Jack Sparrow."  I was totally lost on "Tes the gzegzg," however.  Luckily, Madeleine was able to inform me that it spells "this is the zig-zag."

And clearly these were drawn after Madeleine got deep into the "Ting and Ling" books.  And in her version, Ting and Ling are not little twin girls, but are instead hulking giants.

I've gotta say, this is not bad kindergarten spelling!  I can definitely read that it says "Rosemary Pool is closing."  I'm not sure what the picture with the screaming floating head has to do with the subject matter, however.

And finally, we have: "The Culr Mustr," or "the color monster" in standard English.  Because, let's face it, we had our fair share of aliens and zombies, but monsters were sort of under-represened in this journal, so why not close out with one, right?

I can't WAIT to see the kind of work Madeleine does in kindergarten!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

Head Meets Nose

Somehow, after her bedtime story last night, Madeleine managed to whip her giant head around with such force that it smacked me in the bridge of my nose and made a cracking sound. 

As I was literally howling in pain, Madeleine showed no remorse, instead patiently waiting for me to get over my hyperbolic drama and give her the customary bedtime snuggles.

ME: (sternly) Madeleine.  You need to be careful with the way you move your body.
ME: Because.  You hit your head into my nose, and it REALLY hurt.  It hurts so much it feels like my nose is broken.
MADELEINE: Let me see.  (sitting up and studiously examining my face.)  Well, Mama.  It looks fine.

There has seriously never been a child as compassionate as this one.

ME: Honey, you can't necessarily see the damage from the outside.  You need to be more careful with your body.  You could have broken my nose.
MADELEINE: Well Mama, you could just go to the HOSPITAL and have the doctors fix it.
ME: Yeah, well, sometimes a broken nose makes your bones crooked, and it costs a lot of money to get surgery to fix things like that.
MADELEINE: Well Mama, if you don't have the money, you could just ask JULIA to give you some.

Yeah, because Julia's $38 dollars that she keeps in a Ziploc bag in her room are going to make or break us, financially speaking.

ME: Honey, surgery costs thousands of dollars. Julia doesn't have that much money.
MADELEINE: Well Mama.  Maybe I could just slide down a RAINBOW, because at the end of the rainbow there's a big pot of MONEY, so I could just slide down a rainbow and then put LOTS and LOTS of money into a bag and-

At this point I cut her off.  I mean, seriously, all she really had to do was say "I'm sorry that I recklessly smashed my gargantuan head into your nose," but instead she's going to feed me some BS malarkey about sliding down a rainbow.  SHEESH. What's a mama gotta do to get a little respect?!?

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Harry Potter Sayings

Julia and one of her friends came up with a FANTASTIC idea yesterday during their play-date: create a collection of "Harry Potter sayings" and send them in the mail to J.K. Rowling herself!!

Julia even wrote a sweetly earnest cover letter:

"Dear J.K. Rowling,
I really like your Harry Potter books, so my friend and I (and more friends like your books too!) decided to wright Harry Potter sayings.  I even had a Potter Party with one of my friends!  I hope you like them!
Love, Julia Rowe
P.S. In first grade I was Hermione for Halloween!"

Now, you may be wondering what exactly "Harry Potter sayings" are.  Basically, Harry Potter sayings are little poems that Julia and her friend made up, with heavy emphasis on making things rhyme over making total sense. 

Here are a few of the "sayings" Julia came up with:

"Hermione says, 'in the morning when we here Ron snorring,' Ginny says, 'We find it rather boring!'  They both say, 'We have a new friend, Monnet.  When Ron wakes up, he's in a bonnet!"

When struggling to find a rhyme, simply make up a totally fake, but rhyming, name for a character who is not actually in the books.  Works like magic!  Pun intended.

"Hermione says 'Ginny, oh Ginny.'  Ginny says, 'Oh, I'm so skinny!'  They both say, 'but when you say that you look so grinny!"

Wait.  Ginny and Hermione both say that?  It seems a little weird to me that Ginny would say, about herself, "but when you say that you look so grinny."  Is there a third, unnamed party in the room, who says that with Hermione at the end?  I'm confused.  But hey, it rhymes, and that's what matters when you're writing Harry Potter sayings, right?

"Hermione says 'Good morning!'  Ginny says 'Take Warning!'  They both say 'Voldomort is storming!"

Nice!  I like this one.  It's got a spine-tingling sense of foreboding to it.

"Hermione says, 'Roses, roses, super red.'  Ginny says, 'Voldomort looked so tired I thought he was dead.'  They both say, 'That's why we cursed his bed!"

Mwa-ha-ha-ha-haaaaa!  Hermione and Ginny are going all super dark with the curse-casting here.  They might be spouting sweet poetical sayings like "roses, roses, super red," but don't let that fool you!

Julia is desperately hoping that J.K. Rowling likes her Harry Potter sayings.  I now have an envelope with the fan mail address for J.K. Rowling on it, ready to go in the mail.  Since the fan mail address is to her publisher in New York City, I'm *SURE* J.K. herself will truly be reading these sayings.  Right??

Julia is not the only kid turning one of her obsessions into an extra project.  I discovered, at Madeleine's school, that SOMEONE (can't imagine who) drew and kindergarten-spelled the names of the Power Puff Girls on a big sheet of  
classroom project paper:

That's right, it's Budrcap, Bulsam and Bubls to the RESCUE!

Sunday, June 7, 2015

"Mary and Julieta," by Julia Rowe

Julia started writing a new chapter book this week, and so far it's an exciting one!


"For my babysitters"

1. Mary's Discovery
2. On Father's Boat
3. The Confessing
4. Swiming with The Sharks
5. Miss Adeline's Performance
6. On Muddy Lane
7. Wordless Winter
8. Tree of Friendship
9. The Ocean Shore
10. Apple Cores All the Way

So, I always wonder if Julia has clear and carefully planned out plot in mind before she comes up with her chapter titles, or whether she thinks up good names for the chapters and then fills in the content to fit the title.  If it's the former, I really wonder what made her think, in contemplating the finale of her book, that "apple cores all the way" would be important.  I kind of can't wait until she writes chapter ten to find out what the significance of the apple cores all the way is in the grand scheme of things!

 Chapter 1: Mary's Discovery
"Mary Anthony did not like her name.  She thought new people at schcool would think her name was Anthony Mary.  But her best friend, Julieta Adelyn, liked her name.  She knew one day she would be famus.  Mary and Julieta were playing by the shore one day.  'Mary,' Julieta said.  'We will each dig a whole.  We must"

Well, that's a big cliffhanger for page one.  What must they do??
Also, I totally feel Mary Anthony's pain.  I'm always worried that new people will think my name is Rowe Courtney.

(from pg. 1 "We must") "find a treasure.  We are old enough to know we won't find one but let's look anyway.'  'OK,' Mary agreed.  'But one thing.  What do we do if we find gold?  Who would we give it to?  And if we kept it what would we do with it?  Wear will we keep it?  Would we use it or not?  and what if someone steals it?' Mary was surprised.  It was not like her to ask so much questions.  'We dig it out and take it home.  We will give it to no one.  We will keep it and we will take a little when we want to buy something.  We will keep it in the bank, we will use it once in awhile."

Yeah, the bank is notorious for accepting gold to set up a bank account, right?

 'Know one will steal it if it's in the bank, and Mary, that was not one thing.  It was six,' Julieta said.  So they started to dig.  They dug for a long time.  It grew hot.  Suddenly, Mary cried, 'I found something...A MAP!  AND, OH JULIETA IT LEADS TO YOUR HOUSE!  LET'S GO NOW!' Mary yelled, and Julieta and Mary set off together, following the map."

Hmm.  I don't think it would be that exciting to find a map that leads to my own house, unless, of course, I have forgotten how to get back to my house.  But let's see where this whole map thing leads.  Or perhaps we will just segue into a completely unrelated plot point...

Chapter Two: On Father's Boat

"Julieta flounced over to her father.  It was warm and summer.  'Father, could I use your boat? I would take care of it.  Mary'll come with me.'  'I suppose.  Is Mary good with boats like you?' 'Yes.  Her father's life is boats.  So is hers.  That's one of the reasons we're friends!"

Yup.  Completely different plot point.  But hey, that's okay, I'm excited to see where this boat thing leads us!

 "They put the boat in the water.  Then Mary asked, 'How far out shall we go?  And what if the boat sinks?  We both can sail but not very well.'  Julieta shrugged.  'We should be alright.  We will do okay, right?'  The girls set sail and talked and laghed.  Julieta stood on the mast.  The boat was not very big.  Mary oured.  Julieta laghed in excitment.  Julieta and Mary danced around.  Mary got back to the oars."

That's exactly the kind of cavalier attitude two children ought to take when setting out in a boat on their own.  Adds and extra thrill to the whole experience!

"and Julieta got back on the mast.  She stepped down to tell Mary something, but she found herself standing in a pool of water.  And to her dismay, she saw a small whole in the boat.  She ran over to Mary.  'Mary!  The boat is leaking!  There's a whole!  Help!  We must get back to land!'  Mary pattled faster, and Julieta grabbed another and started to help.  Julieta remberd with fear that she said she would take care of it.  But Mary did not know that.  'Oh NO!  Julieta, what do you-"

Oh, yikes, this is a serious page-turner.  What is going to happen with the whole in the boat??
"think caused the whole?' Mary asked.  Julieta was to upset to speak.  She had ruined Father's boat and she would have to tell him all about it.  She started to sob.  Mary gently said, 'We're close to the shore, Julieta.  Don't be sad.'  They were close to the shore.  Mary stepped out of the boat.  Julieta reluctently followed her.  'Don't worry, Julieta,' Mary said soothingly, 'The whole's no bigger"

"then my hand.'  'But I told Father I would take care of his boat and I did'nt!'  So Mary let Julieta away.  'You will tell him about it tomorrow,' she said.  'I only will if you will,' Julieta said stubernly.  So Mary agreed and they both went home.  Julieta tryed to wipe her tear-stained face.  Mary ran across the street to her house, her blond hair flying after her.  Julieta tryed to remember that she'

"was ten, and not to worry about it.  But she could not help it.  She would worry about forever."

Come on, Julieta, you're only ten, and your dad let you and your friend, both of whom can't sail very well, out on his boat alone.  It's not your fault there was a whole in the boat.  Sheesh.  Just stop worrying and deal with it tomorrow.  Don't tell him right now or anything.  

 Chapter Three: The Confessing

"Dressed in her best outfit, Mary ran across the street to Julieta's house.  She knocked politly.  'Is Julieta home?' she asked.

Sadly, this is as far as the author has gotten, so we don't yet know what Father's reaction will be to the whole in his boat.  I have a feeling that there are still more calamities lying ahead for Mary and Julieta, but I'm also pretty sure that as long as they have apple cores all the way, things will all turn out right in the end.