Gettin’ offa Arkansas mountain


Ok.  Somethin’ happened.  I dunno if maybe I made it happen, or if maybe I didn’t, but that last mornin’ onna mountain didn’ quite go as planned…

Bean an’ Aunty Glenda an’ Grammy Happy was packin’ an’ movin’, gettin’ stuff outta cabin an’ inna car.  Cooper an’ Hittys an’ me were waitin’ in our pink case onna table, wishin’ we could stay a li’l bit longer, watchin’ Hittys an’ dollies an’ dragons bein’ born an’ spendin’ time with Pip an’ Amalynn an’ Pinkly an’ Smidge an’ Voir (even tho Smidge an’ Voir’d been gone a bit).  We were talkin’ bout the Big Green dragon, an’ how super cool it was but super scary too, an’ Cooper was talkin’ bout how a dragon coulda flown us up inna tree to get some mistletoe (cuz alla Beans kept talkin’ bout some mistletoe inna tree!), an’… An’… Wait.  It was awful quiet.  No Beans were talkin’.  Nobody was movin’ things around.

I flipped the pink case latch an peeked out.  Cabin was empty.

But we were still onna table.  Oh.  My.  Gumdrops!

I slid back inna case.  It shut with a soft click.  Cooper looked over at me.  I think he was startin’ to realize somethin’ wasn’t quite right.  We let the Hittys keep talkin’, an’ he scooted over closer to me.

“What’s wrong?” he asked.  When he’s worried, his right eyebrow goes up high.  It was wavin’.

I pushed open the case a li’l bit.  It took him a minute, but then his mouth rounded into an “O” an’ his eyes got all big.  “Bean’s gone,” he said, closin’ the lid again.  Gotta hand it to Cooper.  He’s gotta good brain.

“Yep,” I said.  I pushed the lid open again.  The sky through the window was pretty an’ blue, an’ there were no clouds.  It was a nice day. “We said we wanna stay onna mountain longer.  Guess we’re here now.”  We got out of the case an’ sat onna table, watchin’ things for a bit.  There was a hawk flyin’ inna sky, an’ a dog barked off inna woods.  Cooper was swingin’ his legs off the table edge.  I confessed I didn’t know if I’d done somethin’ to make it so Bean didn’t see us when she was leavin’.  I didn’t think I could do that, but I did really wanna stay longer an’ watch sunrises an’ listen to coyotes an’ stuff.

But there’s only so much sky watchin’ I wanna do from inna cabin.  It seemed too far to jump to the ground–like, break-your-leg kinda too far.  Maybe we could slide down a table leg…

While I was thinkin’ bout whether or not we’d get splinters, Cooper told me I hadda stay with him an’ the Hittys.  An’ he had a point.  If somethin’ bad might come, I outta be near to keep everybody safe.

“Besides,” he asked, “how are we getting home, Kestrel? We can’t live here forever.”

He hadda point.  But now this was an adventure.  I was ready to go!  Still…Cooper would worry.  An’, if I did have somethin’ to do with us bein’ left, I didn’t wanna leave him worried an’ alone.  I needed a plan.

For sure Bean would realize she didn’t have us.  Right?  But maybe she wouldn’t know where we got left.  Or maybe she’d worry our case fell outta car or somethin’.  Plus I didn’t have a plan yet for gettin’ us back offa mountain…  Maybe Bean would come back for us.  That wouldn’t take too long.  We just hadda make sure she knew.

Hitty Lily popped outta the pink case.  She had our ‘puter with her.  Hittys are so smart!

So I wrote messages onna Facebook, cuz ‘puter was hooked inna Sky Vue‘s wifi already.  Bean’s not much on Facebook, but Grammy Happy an’ Aunty Glenda are.  So I wrote messages on their pages too, an’ made a big, stinky message on my page.  Somebody would see it.  Somebody would let Bean know, an’ she’d figure out a plan.

Pretty soon, messages started comin’ back.  People knew we were stuck onna mountain.  An’ a plan was made for gettin’ us home:  Miss Janice an’ Mister Glenn, the nice beans that own Sky Vue Lodge, would box us up an’ get us tickets to ride the Postal!  I was super excited.  I always wanted to ride Postal, but Bean said it was too dangerous.  Plus, super added bonus, the Postal wasn’t gonna leave ’til Monday, so we hadda whole extra weekend onna mountain!

People onna Facebook were blamin’ Bean for leavin’ us behind, an’ I kinda felt bad bout that.  I mean, I guess she did kinda leave us, but I also dunno if I made it happen too, just a li’l bit…  I figured people outta blame me too if they were gonna blame.  Pinkly investigated the mess too, an’ she ruled it was just an accident, so I felt kinda better.  Bean didn’t mean it, an’ we didn’t really mean to be bad dollies either.  Accidents happen.  But we got an Overstay outta it!

Pink Case got moved from the cabin inna main lodge.  It smelled mighty good there!  An’ it was warm an’ cozy.  We were safe, we hadda plan, we were gonna go home, but we gotta enjoy the mountain a li’l bit longer.  Everything seemed all good.  Cooper could stop worryin’, so maybe I could start pokin’ around a li’l bit.

After alla Bean’s voices were gone an’ it seemed quiet, we peeked outta the case.  The Hittys’ tummies were rumblin’, an’ mine was too.  Cooper didn’t say anything, but he also didn’t object.  He said he was comin’ with me, tho.

Coast seemed pretty clear.  So Cooper an’ me got outta box an’ started pokin’ around, foragin’ for food.

Cooper found somethin’ inna bag.  I dunno what it was.  Maybe beans?  Or peas? Or corn?  Somethin’ kinda healthy.  But we didn’t have any way to cook stuff.  I didn’t wanna use a bean’s stove, in case it got us melted or somethin’.  That seemed like a bad idea.  We kept lookin’.  Most everything was put away nice an’ neat.  But we found a cookie, an’ rolled it back for the Hittys.  Gettin’ it back up the table was tough, but we used some rope an’ cables an made a pulley thing.  Then everybody was fed an’ happy!


At nights, I poked around outside a li’l bit too, lookin’ for coyotes an’ takin’ walks.  Cooper kept trying’ to get me to stay put, in case I got lost, but I couldn’t resist.  There was a whole mountain out there, beggin’ to be looked at!  It’d be a shame not to explore it a li’l more.  I saw an owl.  I heard more coyotes, an’ maybe some wild dogs.  I saw mistletoe inna tree an’ wanted to go get it, but Bean let me know she an’ Aunty Glenda got some on their way home too, so I didn’t climb up after it.  I almost fell down the mountain when I slipped on moss.  It was super fun.

Cooper an’ me kept foragin’ for food, too, tryin’ keep Hittys fed an’ keep our stomachs from rumblin’ too loud.  We found an’ shared some cake, which was yummy.

But Cooper found this drink, too.  There was only a li’l bit left, I think.  After he drank it, tho, he got kinda weird an’ crazy an’ talked like a mile a minute.  He wouldn’t stop talkin’, which was kinda weird an’ not really Cooper-like.  Then he got a headache, so maybe I’m glad there wasn’t much of whatever it was.

One foragin’, though, we found a bunch of candy!  Oh my gumdrops, it was good!  I know we were supposed to share with the Hittys, but I kinda forgot, an’ I think Cooper forgot too.  Instead, we ate…an’ ate…an’ ate!

Then we passed out onna table from too much sugar.  The Beans found us there like that inna mornin’.  Oops.  But it was Postal day anyway, so they put us back inna pink case an’ got us ready for travel.  They put us inna pink case inna big brown box.  There was lotsa tapin’ an’ jostlin’, an’ I heard someone say they were takin’ us to the Postal Office.  An’ we were off!

Thanks to Miss Janice an’ Mister Glenn an’ Sky Vue Lodge, we hadda great Overstay!



Halloween Party!

I’m late with my writing, but I promise I didn’t forget.

The day of Halloween, Wren showed us all what she’d been workin’ on.  She an’ Sparrow didn’t wanna dress up in costumes, but they both had pretty Halloweeny dresses, hers with cobwebs an’ Sparrows with bones (an’ paws, but don’t mind alla paws.  They’re just there for extra cute).

Cooper an’ me gotta be Victorian steampunk monster hunters!!  I’m super excited.  I love our hats, an’ our capes, an’ I get to carry a sword.  So if anybody comes playin’ tricks, or if any monsters come inna house, I can take care of ’em right quick.

An’ Falcon an’ Meikiko got costumes, too.  Theirs match up too!  Lately, Meikiko’s been watchin’ a show about a girl that fights crime.  Her name’s Ladybug Girl.  An’ she has a friend who fights crime too.  They’re friends as super heroes, but they dunno each other in real life.  His name is Cat Noir.  Wren made Meikiko a ladybug costume (kinda different from what Ladybug Girl wears, but Meikiko liked it better) an’ made Falcon a black cat costume!  When Falcon said the other day that he thought we outta get a black cat, it made me giggle.


We finished putting out alla decorations, movin’ the pumpkins around, an’ gettin’ cobwebs set up.  Before long, there was a knock, an’ the Littles arrived!  They came in, some walkin’ with a friend, some walkin’ alone: Aqua an’ Rosy an’ Poppy an’ three kittens, an’ a couple girls I dunno, an Nim an’ a baby.  Our whole room was filled up!  Vega an’ Hazel an’ the other new girls didn’t come, an’ I’m kinda glad, cuz I dunno if there’d be room for everybody.  I mean…wow!


(Wren says next year, we gotta find somewhere else for a party)

I think it surprised the rest of the flock, too, cuz Falcon’s eyes got kinda big, an’ Sparrow just kept blinkin’.  An’ yea, it’s a lot.  Alla Littles make a big crowd.  But they’re fun, an’ happy, an’ it was good to see ’em all here again.

An’ then the party began!

The Littles kinda did their own thing.  Poppy was dressed up like a DJ an’ had a radio, so she played alla music for the night.  She had spooky sounds an’ good dance music an’ all sortsa fun stuff for a party night.


The Kittens got inna mischief fast, messin’ round with Mr. Bones inna corner.


There was apple bobbin’, an’ Meikiko helped the new girl nab her apple before she got one for herself, too (I dunno why we didn’t put water inna bowl first).


An’ New Girl an’ the baby played ball with an eye, pushin’ it back an’ forth a bit.


After a bit, I noticed that lotsa the big kids were missin’.  First I missed the boys, then I didn’ know where Sparrow’d gone, then Wren was gone too…  Wren leavin’ surprised me.  But the Littles were bein’ awful noisy.  They were havin’ fun, but it was noisy fun.  I looked over at Nim an’ asked if she knew where the others got to.

She didn’ know.  I didn’t know either.  But we giggled an’ slipped off, lookin’ for the others.  The Littles’d be ok, Nim said.  They did all sortsa stuff on their own without gettin’ hurt too bad.  We’d cleared out alla sharp swords (I put ’em inna closet before the party), an’ we’d moved the rocks away.

We found the others hidin’ inna bedroom.  Cooper an’ Falcon were playin’ dinosaurs, an’ Wren an’ Sparrow were talkin’ onna bed about just how many Littles were inna other room.  Nim joined the girls, an’ I sat down with Riley to cuddle.  Even the bunnies were hidin’ out.

Out inna main room, tho, the party raged on.  New girl found some rock candy.  The kittens got mixed up with a ouija board.  Rosy an’ Aqua started makin’ some witchy brew (I cleaned it up after–man, was it nasty!).  An’ the baby was playin’ with a pumpkin, kinda suckin’ on her thumb too.



The kittens even started a game of monster tag!  I could hear ’em runnin’ round.


There was only the tiniest bit of danger, when Aqua got ahold of a sword.  I dunno if it’s the one Cooper was usin’, or if I left mine behind.  But she got it, an’ she brandished it, an’ things were lookin’ kinda scary.


Meikiko stepped in real quick, tho, an’ told em they hadda put it down cuz a sword’s not a toy.  Not that kinda sword.  I was a bad dolli for not makin’ sure alla swords were picked up afore I snuck off.  I’m glad everybody was ok.  Go Meikiko!  Ladybug Girl to the rescue!


But they all got worn out.  Nim said they would.  We found ’em sitting quiet, kinda lookin’ sorta dazed.  The baby was asleep, curled up round a pumpkin.


We spread out some blankets an’ set out pillows an’ made ’em all comfortable.  It was too late to be trekkin’ alla Littles back through the woods to Dolli Lane.  So we hadda sleep over with a lotta little friends.  It was kinda hard to tiptoe round ’em all, but they were safe an’ warm.  It was a good night.

Hope everybody else had a fun, happy Halloween too!


Sweet Treats: Flower Kiss!

Who says flowers are just for dates an’ bees?  (An’ Littles, who need flowers like they need air).

Wren found a bag.  An’ inna bag were some pretty little pouches with flower pictures an’ Japanese writing.  I dunno what the Japanese part says, but they’re awful pretty anyway!

It’s been a bit since we found candy lyin’ around, so we thought we’d share some with alla readers.  An’ we were both wearin’ flower bright stuff, so it worked every way we could see.



When we broke ’em out, they tasted fruity, kinda like plums.  An’ Wren thought hers was more like apricots.  They were nice, kinda like gettin’ a taste of summer on your tongue.

Oh!  Speakin’ of summer, it’s been gone a whole week now!  You’d think, with it bein’ fall an’ all, that it’d be cooler.  Nope, not yet.  Summer’s got a good hold onna weather.  That ain’t too bad a thing: it means we get more time to be out, playin’, afore it gets dark, an’ we don’t gotta pop on hats yet.  But I’m all itchy, waitin’ for that first cool breath of fall, cuz right after you get the icy chill of winter against your toes!  An’ with winter come snow!

But no snow yet.  Today, we got the taste of summer on our tongues.


Gingerbread House–2nd visit

Meikiko took me back down the trail to visit the gingerbread house.  I wan’t sure what I was gonna see.  Was it the witch’s new home? Was the witch gonna catch an eat alla Littles wha’ came round?  But I wasn’t a Little.  An’ she’d have a bit more t’do to catch me.

When we broke through the forest an entered the clearing, Meikiko said “There.”  An’ there it was, a house made all outta gingerbread an’ done up wit’ icing an stuff.  But I wasn’t sure we was at the right place.


“Um…how mucha th’ house did ya’ll eat?”  Suddenly, I kinda understood why th’ witch mighta been upset they was munchin’ on her house if they ate down alla candy an icin’ and stuff.

“No no no…we didn’t eat that much,” Meikiko said.  “I don’t know what ate the rest.”  And she sat down on the rock and wouldn’t go any closer.


So I went closer an’ spent some time examinin’ the house.  It looked empty.  An’ munched.  Really, really munched.

But I couldn’ find anythin’ like no witch or nothin’ what mighta eaten th’ candy offa house.  Th’ whole thing was confusin’.  Cuz I sure believed the Littles when they told me they only licked a little an’ the witch came out.  Maybe she was just visitin’ too an’ was tryin’ t’play with the girls?  Dunno.

As Meikiko an’ me was leavin’, I thought mebbe I heard some gigglin’ from the house.  Made me turn right quick an’ look again, but there wasn’t nothin’ there.  I mighta gone back for another look, but Meikiko grabbed m’ hand an’ dragged me off.


I’ll keep an eye out, but it’s lookin’ maybe kinda ok for now.


In which the Littles have an adventure

Yesterday was a kinda nice day.  It’d been super cold for a bit, an’ I thought for sure it was gonna snow! But no snow. So yesterday, it started off pretty cold, but it got nice inna afternoon, so alla Littles were outside playin’.  They were over at our house cuz Nim needed time t’ get Dolli Lane cleaned up.  Hazel an’ Vega were over there, helpin’ her.  Wren an’ me was inside, cleanin’, so we could maybe getta Christmas tree set up afore too long, so I guess we weren’t payin’ too good a mind to the Littles.  I mean, we’d go check on ’em an’ stuff, but it wasn’t like we was standin’ out inna grass with ’em.

It gotta be dinner time, an’ Wren finally stopped an’ said that hadda be good enough.  She told me go get the Littles an she went t’ heat up a pot of soup.  So I put on m’ hat an’ headed for the door.

Alla sudden, the Littles came burstin’ in.  They was wild-eyed an outta breath an’ scared.  Alla they grabbed onna my legs an’ just shivered.  I patted their backs for a bit.  The calmin’-down-after-nightmares is more Wren’s style, but I tried.  Finally, Meikiko calmed down an’ started talkin’

They was outside, playin’ tag, when somebody suggested maybe they go for a walk inna woods. (At this, I reminded Meikiko that they shoulda come an’ gotten me first afore they went wanderin’ off.  She kinda hung her head an mumbled, an’ I let it go.) So they all picked a path an’ wandered down it.

Thankfully, it was a nice day.  It wasn’ too cold or too hot, there wasn’t lotta rain or snow, an’ there ain’t a whole lotta scary bad animals inna wood, like bears or coyotes or nothin’.  They said they saw chipmunks an’ rabbits an’ even a red fox, so they kept walkin’  When they came to a path inna woods, they’d lay down some rocks onna side of the path so they’d know how to get home again in case they got confused.  I told Meikiko that was a smart idea.

After wanderin’ a bit, they came to a clearing.  Inna clearing was a house.  It wasn’t no ordinary house, tho.  Meikiko said it was made all outta candy, like gumdrops an’ gumballs an’ icing an’ gingerbread.  An’ I couldn’ say I blamed them for wantin’ a closer look, but parta me was wonderin’ if they ain’t never heard the story bout Hansel an’ Gretel!?


They hadda talk bout whatta do.  Rosy an’ Aqua wanna turn round an go back home.  But Poppy an’ Meikiko wanna make sure it was for real a gingerbread house.  An’ inna middle what they was talkin’ bout, Meikiko walked over an’ started messin with somethin’ onna roof.


She said she licked it, an’ it was candy for real, an’ that kinda decided it for alla they:  they wanna try some too.  I mean, what kid could resist an entire house made outta candy?!  I bit m’ tongue an’ let her keep tellin’ me what happen.  Onna other side of th’ house, Rosy scraped icing offa roof an’ licked it an’ said it was good too.  So then Poppy went to the walk an’ tried a gumdrop, an Aqua went for th’ gingerbread tree, an’ alla they was tryin’ somethin’ sweet.

Then Aqua stopped, an looked ’round a bit, sayin she thought she heard somethin’.


An’ Poppy stop too, an pointed atta house, sayin’ she thought she saw somethin’ movin’ inna window an’ maybe they outta stop eatin’ alla candy an’ let it be.  Which is kinda weird, cuz Poppy’s usually the first one who wantsta do somethin’ kinda dangerous.


Aqua an Rosy started listenin’ to Poppy, tho, an’ they agreed maybe they outta get outta there.  But Meikio had finally gotten an entire candy offa roof, so she wasn’t listenin’ too good to her dolly sisters.


Then, outta blue, Meikiko heard somethin’ from behind her, near the back of th’ house, an’ when she turned, she saw lotta curly red.  She yelled, “Witch!” an’ threw her candy down an’ alla Littles high-tailed it outta there.

Poppy said the witch was sayin’ somethin’ as they ran, but not a one of ’em stopped t’ hear what she hadda say.  I think every one of ’em was thinkin’ hard bout Hansel an’ Gretel an’ how that story ended, an’ they sure didn’ wanna have no part of it!  They woulda gotten lost but for the rocks they left, an’ afore too long, they cam burstin’ outta woods at our house an’ came runnin’ in.

Oh my gumdrops!

I told ’em I was glad they got home safe.  An’ I made ’em all promise me they wouldn’ go wanderin’ off again without gettin’ a big doll t’ go with ’em.  They said ok.

Maybe tomorrow I’ll get one of ’em to take me back to see it.


(ps:  from Kestrel’s BEAN:  The gingerbread house was constructed by my two little beans and their friend.  They kindly allowed me–encouraged me, even!–to take pictures with the Littles, which prompted this story line.  Thanks, guys!)

Pocky Sticks: Weapons or Sweet Treats?

We’ve been looking around the house, trying to find weapons to fight the monsters.  Picking weapons is tough when you don’t know what you’re fighting, so a lot of it is guesswork.  We started of with these things called Pocky Sticks.  I mean, a stick sounds like it’d make a good weapon, right?  Sure, there aren’t any pointy parts or sharp blades, but Hazel pulled up youtube videos showing monks that fight with little sticks, and they do a lot of damage!  These pocky sticks are pretty long. One of them is taller than me!  We could beat something back with them. No doubt.


The stick is so big, it took two of us just to get it out of the box!

It took a bit of work, and some careful maneuvering, but we finally got two sticks out–one for each of us–and in hand.  If difficulty was a good measure for how well a weapon worked, this was gonna be perfect!  We hiked the sticks up in our hands.  Then we tried not to fall, because not only were the sticks big and awkward, they were pretty heavy too!  But we each raised our stick, tapped them against each other’s ends, and prepared to duel.


Um…yeah.  It was interesting.  Here, I’ll show you the whole thing.  The first move was tap one to get us started, kinda like knights crossing swords out of respect.  We wanted to bow, but we were both afraid we’d drop the pockies or land on our heads or something.


Our second move was to whack the sticks against each other.  It was a really good blow.  Or I guess it would have been, if the weapons had lasted.  After that first hit, the sticks kind of…exploded.  There were pocky pieces everywhere in the bedroom!  Wren and I just looked at each other and sighed.  Clean-up time.

Pocky sticks do NOT make good weapons.  Remember this.

Hazel passed by the room while we were cleaning.  She helped for a little bit before vanishing.  We found her finally in the main room, nibbling on part of a pocky stick.  She said they were really tasty!  I think she was a little surprised that we caught her in the act, but then she shared what she had.  We forgave her for ditching us .


Pocky sticks make terrible weapons, but really awesome sweet treats.