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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Clothes (11/02/12)

TITLE: Washing and Folding
By Maurice Armstrong


“It’s the story of my life!” Martha shouted in a most unhappy mood. “I can never seem to have any time to relax.” “Every day I go from one thing to the next.” “I’m either clothes shopping for the children, washing loads of laundry or folding, several pieces.” Sometimes, “I must also make the pick up from the dry cleaners.”

“I wish we can just go back to the way things were.” “Henry and I were quietly enjoying our retirement.” “We have been “empty nesters” for the past two years.” “But, in my loneliness I felt the need to adopt a child.”

“Neither Henry nor I, had asked anyone for help in this venture, but Michael must have overheard our conversation.” ”Oh my God,” “What is he trying to do to me?” “This is much more than I can handle.” “I need help”!

“God has been gracious to us; our daughter and two sons are all grown up.” Michael our oldest was in his fifth year with a leading law firm, Sarah had just started her Dental practice at Brite White Dentistry, and Kevin our youngest was on his 2nd tour of duty in Iraq.” “He loves his military career.”

“In a recent custody battle, between two former classmates with whom Michael was well acquainted; the wife developed a serious brain tumor and died instantly.” “The husband felt guilty about his wife’s death, and he became mentally ill so that he could no longer take care of his four children. Melissa 4, Franklin 5, Sabrina 7 and Deandrea, who just turned 9.”

“Since there were no close relatives available the children were scheduled to be placed in separate foster homes.” Michael, pacing the floor as he considered the responsibility of caring for the children, enlisted me as their guardian.” With his big fancy words, he convinced the Judge that his mother would be the best person to look after the children.”

“At first, I thought it would be an excellent idea as Mary and Paul practically grew up in my house.” I was deeply concerned about the welfare of the children so I willingly accepted the task. ”But, after just two months I am ready to quit.”

“Michael”! I shouted; “I can’t do this anymore.” “Everywhere I turn there are pieces of clothes lying around the house; these children are so untidy it’s just too much, for me.”

He reaches out those long arms and with a big hug, he said, “It’s, okay mom,” “It’s okay,” “I love you, and I will do whatever it takes to relieve you of this burden, and yet you can still have the joy of being a blessing to the children.”

With tears of happiness and reassurance, they continued to hold each other closely as they talked about various possibilities for solving the problem, and to restore peace in the Hammond’s home.

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This article has been read 201 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 11/10/12
This is an interesting story. It can be overwhelming to take care of four young children.

You have a few errors like the quotation marks should not be used for every sentence but at the beginning of the dialog and at each new paragraph and then at the end when the person is done speaking. It also was difficult to follow who was speaking. Try to avoid taglines like he said or she shouted. Instead use that spot to show personality traits while identifying the speaker. For example, Marta covered her face with her hands. or The vein in her forehead pulsated with each word.

I like your idea behind the story. You did a nice job of covering the topic and still allowing the reader to see the turmoil that the MC felt. Good job.
Randy Foncree11/10/12
God bless...thanks for sharing this entry...
Myrna Noyes11/14/12
This woman's frustrations with the children, their laundry, and care came through clearly, but so did her heart of love and compassion. Despite some "mechanical" errors, I enjoyed this story and its positive ending.