Mom's In the Treehouse

After much hemming and hawing, I finally decided to post this little story. It hails from way back in the days when I took a course in writing for children, and it's told from a child's point of view. If nothing else, it should give you a chuckle. :-)

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The whole thing was Robert’s fault. It was his turn to feed the dog and my turn to take out the garbage, but I was late for a ball game so I was going to take the garbage out later, only by then it was too late.

Mom was having some ladies over. She spent months cleaning the house and baked all kinds of fancy stuff and then made sure we all had places to go. I was at my ball game, Emily went to Nancy’s house, and Robert was going to the beach with his friends.

Anyway, mom went out and got her hair done, and she was already mad ‘cause she had to help me find my ball glove and Robert couldn’t find his bathing suit so she was going to be late. When she got home she found out that Ralph, he’s our dog, had gotten garbage all over the place and then he was sick in the front hall. I guess it was pretty gross ‘cause mom and her friends ended up sitting in the back yard.

Boy was mom mad by the time we got home. She had this big list of things we’re all supposed to do but never get around to and hands it to Robert, ‘cause he’s the oldest. Then she says that until people around here start listening to her she’s going to be living in the treehouse. So then she takes this bag with her out to the back yard.

Mom’s always saying that she’s going to go on strike and live in the treehouse. She only ever lets us sleep up there on really nice summer nights so we knew she was just fooling.

Everything was fine until Dad came home for supper, only there wasn’t any supper. We sent Emily out to talk to mom ‘cause she’s the littliest. She came back and said that mom said that we can have whatever we liked for supper, ‘cause she was on strike.

Dad phoned for pizza and then he went out and talked to mom. He didn’t stay long. Then he told us that mom needed a little vacation so she was going to be staying in the treehouse for awhile and we weren’t to bother her.

It was kind of cool at first. We got to eat in the family room and we stayed up as late as we wanted to. I didn’t even brush my teeth before going to bed.

Dad was already at work when we got up in the morning so I went out and asked mom what she was making us for breakfast. She told me that we could have whatever we wanted, she was on strike. She didn’t look like she was on strike. She looked like she was reading sappy romances and drinking that fancy coffee she won’t let us try.

Robert and Emily had cold pizza and orange pop for breakfast. Emily threw up. I had ice cream and cookies. That’s what I had for lunch too.

At suppertime we were kinda hoping Dad would take us out for burgers or something, but he decided he was going to cook. We’ve never seen him cook before and boy did we find out why. Dad’s a real stinky cook.

I don’t know about Robert and Emily, but I had a tummy ache when I went to bed that night. In the morning I didn’t feel like ice cream and cookies again, so I had cereal. Robert made toast for him and Emily.

After lunch, which we had to get ourselves, Robert called a family meeting in his room - him, me and Emily. He pulled out the list and said he’s been looking at it and mom was right, we have been slacking off a lot. He also said that there’s three of us and it’s not like there’s that much mom wants us to do.

Emily went back to her room and got some paper, then Robert made up a chart to stick on the bulletin board in the kitchen so we wouldn’t forget who’s turn it was to do what. Then we picked some flowers from mom’s front garden and sent Emily out to ask mom to come in.

Mom really liked our chart. We told her we were sorry we were such butt heads and that her party had been ruined. She said it was okay, that those ladies were kind of stuffy anyway and that she loved us a lot, even if we were butt heads.

So, the end is, mom’s back on the job and we’ve got the chart now to tell us who forgot to do what. But what I’d like to know is, is dad really a rotten cook, or did he just pretend to be so we’d work things out with mom?

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