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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Potluck (Meal or Gathering) Deadline 7-26-12 @ 10 AM NY Time (07/19/12)

TITLE: Just Desserts
By Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom
07/25/12


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Gracie bubbled with excitement. This would be the first year that she would be old enough to be a helper for the Church’s Social Dinner. She wiggled her feet back and forth as she waited for instructions.

Finally, Mom turned to Gracie and her best friend, Shay. “I’d like you and Shay to do something special. You can assign dishes for each family to bring. It’s an important job. You have to make sure we have a balanced dinner.”

Mom handed them some forms to fill out and give to each family. Together, they skipped off to a nearby corner to plan the menu.

At the top of the paper were suggestions for dishes in each food group. Gracie wrinkled her nose. “Yuck, peas, green beans, meatloaf. That stuff is disgusting.”

Shay pointed to the dessert suggestions. “Look here, cupcakes, cookies, pies. Too bad we can’t have a dessert only menu.”

The two girls turned their heads and started giggling. Gracie cupped her hand around her mouth and whispered into Shay’s ear. “Since we’re in charge, why can’t we have just desserts?”

Rubbing her hands together, Shay giggled. “Yum! Mrs. Chase makes the best peanut butter fudge in the world and Mrs. Nelson makes scrumptious cupcakes.”

Gracie wrote down dessert after dessert under each family’s name. “This is going to be the best Church Social ever! The kids will all think we’re heroes. I can’t wait until next Saturday.”

On the night of the social, Shay came to Gracie’s house to get ready. Shay braided her friend’s hair and they both put on purple dresses. Gracie bounced on the tip of her toes. “I’m excited and I feel so grown up.”

Shay bent over with her arm wrapped around her tummy. “Are you nervous that we might get in trouble?”

Licking her lips, Gracie shrugged her shoulders. “It’s too late to do anything about it now.”

Just then, Mom popped her head into the doorway. “Time to go, girls.”

After everyone was settled in the car, Mom turned around and looked at the girls. “Remember your manners. Don’t complain if you don’t like the food. You need to take a little bit of everything and clean your plate before you can go back and get dessert. Got it?”

Shay elbowed Gracie in the ribs. Gracie swallowed hard. “Okay, Mom, don’t worry; we’ll be polite.”

Once they entered the church, Mom and Dad busied themselves setting up tables. Soon Pastor Dave cleared his throat. “Before we start filling our stomachs, let’s bow our heads and bless the food.”

When he finished praying, Mom stood up. “I want to thank everyone for their contribution. Shay and Gracie planned the menu for tonight’s meal, so we want them to be first in line.”

Gracie could feel the blood spread out across her cheeks. Her hand shook slightly as she picked up a plate and walked to the buffet table. The food was all covered in tin foil. Shay walked around to the other side of the table. The girls each took a deep breath and uncovered the first dish.

“What?” Gracie squealed and dropped her plate. She blinked her eyes and looked down at a huge pan of meatloaf. Quickly she scooted down the table. Her mouth flopped open as she uncovered a tossed salad, a dish of peas, and next in line-- a huge pan of creamed spinach.

Shay darted to the end of the table, where normally the desserts would be. She found a dish of carrots and a bowl of mashed potatoes. The girls scanned the table but couldn’t find one single dessert.

Suddenly, the girls heard chuckling coming from behind them. Gracie spun around and looked at her mother. Mom laughed so hard that tears were welling up in her eyes. “Girls, remember that you promised you would try something from each dish.”

Gracie’s lips quivered. “But, this isn’t . . .”

Shaking her head, Mom walked over and hugged Gracie. “Don’t you know by now that parents talk to each other? We discovered your trick and decided to play a joke on you instead. You’ll be happy to know that there are some desserts hiding in the other room. But first you need to eat some meat, potatoes and vegetables.”

Shay leaned over and gently punched Gracie on the shoulder. “Parents are sneaky. When will we ever learn?”


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This article has been read 315 times
Member Comments
Member Date
CD Swanson 07/26/12
Oh this was so cute. I really liked it. The little darlings thought they could fool parents! Boy...I can remember when I thought that too, all those years ago.

I enjoyed it. Thank you.
God bless~
Noel Mitaxa 07/27/12
Good sense of life and suspense and intrigue. How sad that these two young innocents got their just desserts ;-) Well written.
Dannie Hawley 07/27/12
I so totally love this story! You did such a great job with descriptions and pulling us into the story. The title was a perfect choice, with an appropriate double meaning. Excellent job!
Helen Curtis07/29/12
I love this! I could really imagine the girls' shock at the changed menu; but I applaud their courage to try such a wonderful idea! Let's face it, who here wouldn't like a "just desserts" buffet?! Hehe!! Well done, this is written beautifully and was very enjoyable.
Laura Manley07/30/12
I've heard of Wrigley, but have not had the privilege of reading one of her stories. This was absolutely delightful from beginning to end. If there were grammar or punctuation errors, I honestly did not see them. Your story flowed extremely well and if it had been a book, I wouldn't have been able to put it down. I LOVED this story. Excellent writing!
Leola Ogle 07/30/12
Imagine! Two little kids being mischievous!This is so cute. Good job! God bless!
Laury Hubrich 07/30/12
Oh, too bad. I wanted the girls to get away with it! :) Cute story.
Loren T. Lowery07/30/12
Isn't that the truth: Kids never think adults (or parents) ever talk to one another. Liked the story and could feel the "regret" of the girls as the time for the reveal came closer.
Catrina Bradley 07/30/12
I started giggling half way through. I loved this story - and I think kids will too.
Beth LaBuff 07/31/12
From the first moment of their conniving, I was fill with fear and trepidation for them. :) I love the twist you pulled on them (and the reader). You gave me a big smile with this, Shann. :) Totally enjoyed it!!
lynn gipson 07/31/12
This is just the sort of thing my grand daughters would try....LOVED it! Great story...couldnt wait to see what kind of trouble they would get in....God Bless
lynn gipson 07/31/12
This is just the sort of thing my grand daughters would try....LOVED it! Great story...couldnt wait to see what kind of trouble they would get in....God Bless
Hiram Claudio08/01/12
This was such a fun and enjoyable read. I enjoyed the build up to the dinner as the girls thought they'd gotten away with their plans. I could almost see the whole group winking at each other as the girls went up first.

While mischievious, I liked the sense of community and church family I felt while reading it. This was SO nice!
Amy Michelle Wiley 08/02/12
Hehehe, cute! I like it. I used to go to a church that had dessert auctions to raise money for missions.
Dannie Hawley 08/02/12
Congrats on your H.C.! Cheering in the wings big time!
Genia Gilbert08/02/12
Congratulations on you HC. Didn't get any reading (or writing) done this week, but you are doing some really good writing.
Genia Gilbert08/02/12
Congratulations on you HC. Didn't get any reading (or writing) done this week, but you are doing some really good writing.
Loren T. Lowery08/02/12
Very glad to see this. Congratulations, it was an enjoyable read and still holds true the second time through reading.
Noel Mitaxa 08/02/12
Congratulations on your HC, and great to see a whole bunch of FW family members expressing their praise as well. Just proves that as you give - as you do - it will be given back to you, pressed down, shaken togetehr and running over! Well done.
Danielle King 08/02/12
Loved it! Well done and congratulations on being HC.
Beth LaBuff 08/02/12
Hey Shann, congrats on your highly commended bar!
Patsy Hallum08/02/12
Well deserved H>C>! Fun story of the way little girls think.
Keep writing!
CD Swanson 08/02/12
Congrats Shann! God Bless~
Barbara Lynn Culler08/03/12
Cute story and congrats on your rating!
Kristi Huseby 08/05/12
Nice job Shann! Congratulations on your highly recommended rating. I thought the story was very cute and was able to picture it in my mind.
Angela Coleman 10/08/12
Loved this story. It was full of humor and love and reminded me about the times, as a kid, when my parents thwarted some of my own "sneaky" plans. A lot of fun to read.