Tuesday, April 20, 2010

My first Story-Time Tuesday!

This first story is adapted from a tell-aloud story I share with our grandchildren in the car.

So...here we go with Chapter One of my First Story-Time Tuesday! Gulp! Jenny Matlock
STORIES FROM HOME - Chapter One

At the edge of a pond…

At the edge of a woods…

At the edge of a mountain…

Stood a sad little house.

It had been so long since the sad little house had been a home, it had almost, but not quite, forgotten what it was like to be loved.

Once upon a time, the sad little house had been dressed in shiny, white paint that turned a lovely shade of pink each morning when the sun came up over the mountain.

Once upon a time, the sad little house had been surrounded by beautiful flowers and bees buzzing around blossoms of red, yellow, white and purple.

Once upon a time the sad little house’s big front porch had stood straight and proud, welcoming friends and family to sit and dream, and to drink lemonade from frosty, cold glasses.

But now the sad little house’s paint was peeling into dirty little drifts of grey. The weeds had grown tall and covered up all the flowers. The only thing that ever sat on the weathered and worn front porch was a small, skinny calico cat that lived in the old, red barn behind the sad little house.

Once upon a time the sad little house’s front door had been painted a cheerful, bright red and opened into a hallway cluttered with shoes and bookbags.

Once upon a time the sad little house had windows that were clean and sparkling. Through their polished surfaces you could see little faces anxiously awaiting the school bus, or a beloved grandmother’s arrival.

Once upon a time the sad little house was filled with chaos and clatter and the chatter of children and the steady, calm voices of a mother and a father.

But now the faded front door opened to piles of dead leaves and dirt. Some of the windows were cracked and the rest were so covered with grime that sunlight could hardly find its way inside. The only sounds the sad little house ever heard were the groan of the wind through the broken windows, or squirrels and chipmunks and tiny, brown field mice skittering across the dust-covered floor. Do you know that many people think a house is just a thing, like a rock or a chair, and that the boards and the bricks and the stones have no feelings?

And sometimes those people might be right.

But sometimes, when a house has been long and well-loved, something magical happens. The boards and the bricks and the stones become filled with laughter and love, and the house turns into a safe and wonderful place. The house becomes a home.

And often when things change and children grow up and the people who love a home move away, something very sad happens. The home becomes just a house again.

But this sad little house at the edge of a pond, at the edge of a woods, at the edge of a mountain was a very special little house.

And because it was so special, somehow deep down inside the sad little house a bit of the magic stayed alive even when its loved ones moved away.

Maybe the magic came from all the memories of laughter and love and from a wish and a dream that someday someone would return and love it again.

The sad little house stood at the edge of a pond, at the edge of a woods, at the edge of a mountain for a long, long time.

It watched as the pond froze and thawed, and fish jumped in the blue-mirrored water, and as ducks quacked loudly in the small waves decorated with colorful fall leaves.It watched as the woods became silhouettes of black and white branches aginst freshly fallen snow, and as bright green buds grew into cool, lovely summer leaves and as autumn painted all the trees glowing colors of gold and red and orange.

It watched as the tops of the mountain became decorated with glittering snow, and then covered in spring blossoms of orange and yellow. It saw when mysterious shadows made the mountain seem like a dark purple painting against a bright blue October sky.

But after some time had passed the sad little house lost even more happiness because the trees and weeds surrounding it grew higher. On some summer days the sad little house could hardly see the pond and the woods and the mountain.

Almost hidden away, the sad little house watched and waited…season after season.

And season after season, nobody came.

And the sad little house grew even sadder, its paint peeling even more. The bees rarely came to visit because the flowers were hidden in tall weeds. And sometimes even the small, calico cat didn’t come to sit on the worn and weathered front porch.

The sad little house grew lonelier.

And it had to try very, very hard to remember the sounds of chaos and clatter and the chatter of children and the steady, calm voices of a mother and a father.

And only on the very best of days could the sad little house remember what it was like to be dressed in shiny white paint with clean and sparkling windows and a cheerful, red front door.

To be continued on Tuesday, April 27th.

To read Chapter Two just click here!
To read Chapter Three just click here!
To read Chapter Four just click here!
To read Chapter Five just click here!
To read Chapter Six just click here!To read Chapter Seven just click here!
To read Chapter Eight just click here!To read Chapter Nine just click here!To read Chapter Ten just click here!To read Chapter Eleven just click here!To read Chapter Twelve just click here!
(c) 2010 Jennifer R. Matlock
This publication is the exclusive property of Jennifer R. Matlock and is protected
under the US Copyright Act of 1976 and all other applicable international, federal, state and local laws .The contents of this post/story may not be reproduced as a whole or in part, by any means whatsoever, without consent of the author, Jennifer R. Matlock. All rights reserved.

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52 comments:

Terra said...

I couldn't help but drift off to the Mirandas song "the house that built me" while reading this. I loved the imagry and can't wait to read more!

Jocelyn said...

Oh I can see this house....happy and filled with little faces looking out the window....now the sad little house....just wishing for someone to fill it with happiness!!!

WONDERFUL....I can't wait until next week!!

Cheryl said...

Jenny, that was beautiful leaving me wanting more. It was so easy to dive right into that little house and feel everything as you narrated.

Good for you for letting go of that trapeze bar!

Mumsy said...

Wonderful story with vivid description! I can see and feel the the sad little house..

My name is PJ. said...

The house came alive for me. I could relate to it feeling like a house and, then again, to it feeling like a home.

It's all about heart. That's what makes it excellent. And it's no wonder because you're all about heart too.

Take a bow, Matlock!

Viki said...

I can't wait for the rest. It reminds me of my mom's home I just sold. Unfortunately, it was really in bad condition and we had to sell it "as is". I always told the real estate agent it could be a wonderful home again with a little TLC and the right family. I don't know if that's who bought it or not because I think they bought it for rental property but time will tell when someone moves in.

Michele {The Scrap Shoppe} said...

Very intriguing! Can't wait to read more. I can just picture the little house at the edge of the pond, the edge of the woods, the edge of the mountains. So vivid!

MrsJenB said...

I can't wait to read more! What a great story, and so beautifully written.

Sh@KiR@ CK said...

You tell such great stories, Jenny!
It is not 100 words challenge is it?
How are we going to do this challenge?
You can see I am getting so excited just reading about your story...OH MY!
love it ! love you!
hugs
shakira

Nadeen said...

Yup, that's it! Sweet.

Darcie said...

First SO glad to see your copyright...you sure want to protect your beautiful writings.

Secondly..your story moved me. It moved me to want to go find that little old house and make it a home again!

Jenny said...

Beautiful writing! I can't wait to rad the rest.

We got the next chapter in our grandma's story yesterday... it has us on the edge of our seats.

Dee said...

I see talent here...lots of it. Your story touches into my passion of old houses. I look forward to more Tuesdays at your blog.

Terry said...

Now how do you expect me to wait a whole week for more of your story? LOL

Great story it is, btw! :0)

Brittany said...

This was INCREDIBLE!

You are SOOOO flippin amazing!

I could picture every picture!I can not wait to hear the rest of the story!!!!!

Lisa Leonard said...

this is too fun. love it!!

Mid-Atlantic Martha said...

Oh I can't wait to read more! I hope the sad little house gets filled up with happiness again!

Julie Schuler said...

I agree with everyone's compliments. The writing is clear and evocative, but not dummied-down for children. It is a great beginning!

LuLu Kellogg said...

Oh Jenny....you really have a way with words! I love the story and can't wait to read more :)

LuLu♥

Connie said...

Very descriptive! Great writing! I feel like I'm correcting a paper. Sorry.
I think houses are living things and need life inside or they fall apart!
Anxious for next Tuesday's writing.

Julie Harward said...

I loved this story Jenny...you have quite the imagination! Can't wait for the rest of the story! Come say hi :D

Linda said...

Love the story and your writing is wonderful. I am a fan but you know that. Waiting for the next installment.

criticalcrass said...

this has potential to be a really cute kids' book. you should think about that. seriously. :]

Theresa said...

Love the story dear Jenny and can't wait for the rest:) My family home where we all grew up is kinda sad:( We keep the grass cut but nobody lives there and your story reminded me of where I grew up in so many ways! Have a blessed day my friend! HUGS!

Tina said...

Wow Ms. Jenny. Can't wait to see this in print! You are going to submit this to be published aren't you? You are AMAZING. And this will be a LONG week waiting for more. Can't believe where you left us hanging...

Holly said...

This is an amazing story!! I'm so glad that you are writing it and others down as they would be such sad little stories if people forgot them.

I want to buy your book as soon as it comes out!!!!!! I could hook you up with a great illustrator!!!!

Can't wait to read more!!!

Have a great week, Jenny!

Andrea said...

to be continued??!!! Oh man, what a great story. I will just sit here until next Tuesday.

Cassie said...

This sounds very much like the wonderful little houses that we sometimes get to find treasures in....ahh the history!

Ma What's 4 dinner said...

I can't wait for next Tuesday! I'm so glad Mr. Jenny is such a nag, because now we all get to hear the story.

Thanks for coming by my blog, so thrilled it brought me to yours!

Alex aka Ma What's For Dinner
www.mawhats4dinner.com

Ms. Anthropy said...

Gave me visions of my grandparents house, along with feelings about my own house, that doesn't feel much like a home anymore.

grammy said...

Great story
of course I will come back for more (o:

Rocky Mountain Woman said...

Love it!

Can't wait for more....

Busy Bee Suz said...

Love this story Jenny...I agree, a home has a soul in it. Mine is full. :)

Nicolasa said...

aww, poor little house became so sad. I can't wait to read more!

Paula said...

awww...who's going to find it? I hope they love it back to life!!

kim said...

What a sad little story. Looking forward to more of it. You are really quite talented.

Jeanie said...

It sounds like the little house has already generated a lot of love. I can see children's interest and emotions being evoked when they hear or read this. You have left us all wanting to hear more. Great writing.

Lourie said...

I love this story!!! I am looking forward to next Tuesday for the next installment.

Vicki said...

I wanna be in the back seat of the car as you tell your stories...

Hope you're still bowing..

Maggie B said...

Jenny that was just lovely, it left me wishing I had a small grandchild to tell the story of the little house to, before tucking them up in bed.
C'est la vie.
~Maggie~

Rural Revival said...

Wow. I'm truly looking forward to reading more of this story!

~Andrea~

Brenda said...

All I can say is Wow! I love it and would read this to my grandchildren in a minute and I am sure it would be one they would want to hear often. Great story I cannot wait to read the next chapter.

Tracy said...

wow

beedeebabee♥ said...

Oh Jenny! I loved it so, I didn't want it to end! Your descriptions and the feeling of the story are so wonderful...I can just picture it all so perfectly! What a beautiful little book this would make! I can't wait to read more!
That was excellent! xo Paulette

Jennifer said...

I really like it! I can't wait to read more! :D

Pat @ Mille Fiori Favoriti said...

As always Jenny I am catching up....

This is such a sweet story and I think there will be a happy ending that I am looking forward to reading it next week!

♥ Pat

Sares said...

LOVE IT! I can't wait to read more. I so hope this sad little house finds someone to love it again Beautiful Jenny!

Brenda said...

I knew I should have waited until tomorrow to read this... I just knew it. You always do this to me. Now I'm so sad for the little house and I don't know what's going to happen to it... at least It's almost time for chapter two. It better be happy because I'm hormonal and I can't handle much more of this emotional stuff this week, LOL!

Aunt Amelia's Attic said...

Sweet... And just as sweet is that you have copyright protection!

Aunt Amelia's Attic said...

Sweet... And just as sweet is that you have copyright protection!

Bonnie said...

Wow... I love your writing style. I really drifted away and could picture everything so clearly!

I just recently discoverd your blog (from Terra at Sittinonanoak)and am catching up. I can tell I'm really going to enjoy it!

Shannon said...

Wonderful start to a wonderful story I am sure! Can't wait to read more!