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  1. Christmas is over, New Year is gone, I'm out of excuses. Back to weekly posting plan. And, so, what's going on in Ranford household? To be honest, not much. Life continued in familiar, chaotic misery. Viola started a new parenting strategy. You put a crying baby on floor and lecture it. Very fundie-like, and very unproductive. She decided to share this wisdom to the world with her first book. Basically, it’s a collection of her blog posts, but readers now must pay money for it. Smart life choices! Reed is a bit of a bully towards Huckleberry. He gets along with twins and doesn't care about quads yet, but every time he sees Huck with a toy, he takes it away. Zachary and Viola would encourage Huck to give Reed his favorite childhood position, but, unfortunately, Huckleberry doesn't have anything that belongs just to him. But Reed has a good side, too. He catches more fishes in one day than Zachary has managed to catch in his entire life. The fishes Reed provides is the main food source for entire family now. And he remembers to pick up all the old bottles from kitchen floor. And, trust me, there are lot of bottles. #StoryTime: During one night a total stranger entered a house!!! Viola was busy potty training Huckleberry and didn't notice until it was too late! The ungodly stranger turned out to be a hobby instructor! They are almost as bad as social workers, running around and telling kids that it's ok to enjoy something!! (Apparently, Forest likes this one particular toy so much he has gained enough enthusiasm to be in zone. And he is only toddler. I'll take it as a sign.) And, yes, no pregnancy announcement from Ranfords... Have Lord closed Viola's womb? Without giving her a precious little baby girl? Or is this just temporally hardship that will be overcome with combination of praying and sweet fellowshiping? Viola sure hopes so.
  2. Hello again. The blog now has a new title and two new main characters, but some things will never change. Like the ridiculousness of Ranfords. When we last left them, they had just welcomed four new sons. How is their life with quads? Well... Fun fact: it takes about four hours to feed two toddlers and five babies. Then you have about an hour to take a shower or eat, before the long and messy circle of diaper change starts. If you get lucky, they sleep between feeding and changing. "Maybe we should also adopt?" Umm, no. With so many kids, there is often not enough time to pick up all the bottles or look after all your blessings to make sure nobody eats an old milk and gets sick. Besides, bottle picking is Reed's new jurisdiction, where is he? Interesting... he has found a friend! Who happens to be a girl. With short hair! At least she wears skirts. "What do you mean, you don't go to school? Who teaches you math?" "What's math?" Reed's new friend is into sports... Weird. Is she feminine enough? Won't she encourage Reed to do bad things like asking questions and having relationships outside of the family unit? Zachary decided to have a talk with Reed about worldly influences. After all, Satan always tries to get the first born sons. Viola meanwhile started a blog called "Natural, Neat, and Noble" where she writes about godly way of living. Tribes of Israel lived in tents near rivers, and you should, too! They didn't send their kids to public school and didn't give birth in hospitals, and you shouldn't either! It's logic, guys. Quick reminder: Huckleberry exists. And is ready to grow up. He got a birthday cake, but only because automatic aging didn't work for some reason. Poor guy looks a lot like Zachary. Speaking of Zachary, it was time for church's first service. He arrived early to meet all visitors. The ownership of church got transferred to Hsus, because Ranfords already have one business, and Hsus need an income as well. But Jihoon is way too shy to talk with strangers or give public speeches, so Zachary is still the pastor. Jihoon... isn't that good with this business thingy, to be honest. Some townies think this new church is a real #blessing and will make Crystal Archipelago better. This one, for example, gave Zachary a tv worth 8,000 $. "Wow, how neat! We will send you a free copy of my book. When I finish it." "You are writing a book?" "No." Others felt differently. A teen, whose name is Sinjin Couderc (I think), for example didn't like Zachary's statement about homosexuality's unnatural nature. "What the hell that even means?" The church was still filled with decorations from Jihoon and Lyndsay's wedding, so Zachary had to make his speech outside. At first, nobody cared. "Guys? Guys? I have to say some very important things about the acceptable length of woman's skirt... Look, no offense, but some of you could use that information! It's coming straight from God!" Then Sinjin came over, and very nice old gentleman (named Ethan Barrett) followed him. Ethan had overheard Sinjin and Zachary's previous conversation, and felt that it was a good idea to cheer Sinjin up. "Look, I personally think that you can go to heaven regardless of whether or not your way is straight." Zachary was shocked, I tell you, shocked. "That's... That's a sin!" Don't rush into that judgment, buddy. I randomize my simss sexual orientations right after birth, so I know that not all of your sons will grow up heterosexual. Unfortunately, this lady felt similar as Zachary and was quick to tell him so. Possible new leghumper? Uh-huh. After service Zachary reminded Jihoon to have as many babies as possible and then went home to install a new tv and watch some football. Just for research purposes, of course. You have to keep up with heathen world to save it. Thanks for reading, everyone. The part about Hsus will follow soon. Rufus bless.
  3. This is the new house of our darling power couple. You thought they would live in forest like Ranfords? Lol, no. Lyndsay believes that gardening and cooking from scratch makes her better than others more feminine. As church now belongs to Hsus, they must visit it every day. Lyndsay tried to fix what Jihoon screwed up. Jihoon doesn't mind that his wife is now responsible for business - after all she is still submitting to him, right? Right? While Lyndsay worked, Jihoon run into his long-time friend from townie days, Ryan Wheeler. Ryan is quite fundie already and dreams about starting a Christian music band. "You want to join?" "No, having job would make it harder for me to witness to lost souls. We and Lyndsay, we trust God when it comes to our finances." Jihoon wasn't joking - Hsus indeed take soulwinning (and associated moneywinning) very seriously. During their first days of marriage, they started several ministries dedicated to just that: "Talking with strangers on streets" ministry that soon resulted with some very generous gifts, such as a large tv, a computer, and 10% discount for furniture. (No worries, kilts are allowed for men.) "Inviting people over for dinner" ministry that allows Hsus to build better relationships with sims they are already friends with. So one day they can ask the Big Question (the "do you want to give me all your money and move in my house to serve as my personal unpaid maid?" one). "Journey to the Heart for Young Men" - when Jihoon invites over his buddies, and they do Manly Things. "Journey to the Heart for Young Women" - when Lyndsay invites over her ladies, and they spend an evening convincing her old friend from townie days to change her wardrobe. "Honey, you need something more modest, more feminine... Something that compliments your delicate nature and your Christian role models." "Much better." Camryn Lee wasn't so sure. She was used to her old style. And, yes, as you probably noticed, they adopted a dog - a very friendly Labrador named Lulu. She likes walks and playing fetch, but hates dog food and only eats sims' leftovers or flowers. After selling gifts townies gave them, Hsus were able to build bathrooms for church. Two separate gender specific bathrooms, of course. One would have been cheaper, but... you know. All this hard work ultimately had fruits. During one of JTTH for Young Women meetings, Camryn finally had an epiphany – she must give all her money to these people, move in with them to spend her life serving Lyndsay Zachary Lord!!!1!!1 So she did. I don't know, what makes her so excited about sleeping in a tent, but it's her life. Another news: the pregnancy test didn’t lie! Lyndsay is expecting for sure!
  4. Hello. Ranfords are back. I'm not sure how often I will update from this point on, but I hope for weekly posts. When we last left Ranfords, they had just welcomed their forth blessing. In case you forgot, Ranfords now have four sons: Reed, Forest, River and Huckleberry. Thanks to my not so well thought rules for this neighborhood, they will have many, many more. And it's though. Viola was so busy with kids, even Zachary had to participate in housework! His poor, fragile masculinity was shaking. Some... hey-hey-hey activities helped. (I'm so sorry.) Look, something cute! Reed grew up. Nobody noticed, and he didn't ask for any attention. He likes to be outside, alone, doing something useful - his favorite activity is fishing. His new jurisdictions are: picking berries, nuts and mushrooms; planting tree saplings*; fishing for few hours a day. Homeschooling is so great, and teaches kids so many useful skills, not like evil liberal public schools!** Twins grew up as well. Forest, victim of first-born syndrome, is a copy of Reed and wears brown outfit. River has similar looks, and his personality is almost the same as well. He wears green outfit. Soon Viola was expecting again. Unlike their older brother, twins did not enjoy their toddlerhood - they followed their parents, asked for attention, cried, refused to be potty trained, passed out in weirdest places and throw tantrums. Examples below. Dont worry, though, they were probably just being manipulative. Something good in it all: at least they were here for each other. Zachary finally reached enough mechanical skills to be registered as electrician. Ranfords now have electricity in their house. Yey! Viola used the new phone to get back in touch with her old friend. I thought her name was Lindsay, but it's actually Lyndsay with extra y. How neat and cool! Lyndsay agreed to move in for a while to help Viola with kids and herself with... things. After getting Ranfords-approved makeover, Lyndsay purchased a computer and started to write a book about courting and marriage. Of course, she had never been in a romantic relationship. Two other things came with Lyndsay and electricity. First, Zachary opened a home business and is now selling some homemade baskets and other things from his old van. (Twins are, of course, hanging near him, hoping for a bit of attention.) Minus side - customers can wander around the house and talk to kids. "When I grow up, I'll be politician, and ban abortions!" "That's... special." Quick reminder: Huckleberry exists. Some people were very upset about how Ranfords raised their kids. "Is this even legal?" "Yeah, just morally questionable." As Ranfords were not doing anything illegal, upset townies had to come up with creative ways to express their disapproval. Secondly, Lyndsay encouraged Zachary to open a church! Crystal Archipelago Grifting Ministry is small and self-isolated church that definitely does not welcome all... or even most. But Zachary is sure that it will soon grow into important community center. Lyndsay told him that he is a great public speaker. His next sermon will definitely be about modesty. These outfits! They also sell Christian magazines and greeting cards to unaware townies.*** Church holds services every Wednesday and Sunday. It's first service was not very well attended. Still, one guy caught Lyndsay's eye - he was shy and cute, and not a Ranford, so definitely her type. Next day, she called him to... emm, encourage him to ask her out. Viola is happy for her friend, but a bit worried that things move so fast. Lyndsay took Reed to chaperone her. He didn't really care about the date, and it suited Lyndsay's needs. After a short argument about woman's rights to wear pants, Lyndsay and her new baaabe (his name is Jihoon Hsu, btw) found a common ground. Reed...? "Look, you are shy and nice, and I can manipulate you... I mean, I already touched your shoulders, I guess there is only one thing we can do now." It was a shotgun wedding. Lyndsay got married before Viola gave birth. “And now we can move into real house, and make cute babies, and run this place!” And so they did. As soon as Lyndsay moved out, Viola went into labor. Giving birth in bathroom is a tradition in this household. Its a boy! Red hair, blue eyes! Who would have thought? And, wait, theres another one! And another one! Aaand... yep, another one! I guess, this illustrates their current season of life quite well. It's still nice to meat you all, Linden, Cedar, Oak, and Elm. Nobody will be able to tell you apart, because you all have red hair and blue eyes. Just like all your other brothers. Question: do you want me to write about Hsu family as well? I will definitely play them, and they will be part of church plot either way, but do you want to see their everyday life? Alternatively, all updates can be just about Ranfords slowly turning into Arndts. * You can get all that cool stuff at here: http://www.medievalsims.com/forums/viewforum.php?f=240 ** Here is a mod that allows player-run schools and homeschooling: http://www.simlogical.com/sl/Sims2Pages/Sims2_School.htm *** That's one amazing mod, let me tell you: http://modthesims.info/d/385962
  5. Trynn

    Trynn Cleans Ceiling Fans

    I have been rebuked by a fellow FJer for doing the cleaning post wrong. So, here's an attempt at doing it right. Today was the day of the week where my job makes us clean the ceiling fans. My boss took the initiative, telling me I'd better get off my cell phone and do some actual work if I was interested in getting paid. I purposed in my heart that I would dust the ceiling fans. While I went to the office to flip the switch that would turn on the fans, I thought about death. Would death be preferable to cleaning ceiling fans? If I fell off the ladder and broke my neck, did I know where I was going? What would happen if I fell of the ladder and broke my ankle? I would just have to trust in the lord that everything would be ok. I purposed in my heart to be brave, and prayed that God would give me the courage to climb that ladder, for lo, I do not like heights. I took the long handled dust mop, climbed the ladder, and wiped the blades with the dust mop. Since we clean our ceiling fans for Jesus every week, there wasn't much dust to begin with, and I forgot to take pictures. The before and after ones would have looked the same anyway, since everything here gets cleaned all the time. After getting off that really high really scary ladder, I spent all the rest of the day praying for forgiveness for all my sins. Praise the Lord. There, was that better? Sort of? I really do hate that stupid ladder, but I exaggerated exactly how much it freaks me out. Well....sort of.....
  6. Trynn

    Yard Work With The Doodys

    This story has 2 alternate endings. I honestly couldn't decide which I liked better, so I included both. Maude Bagwell quietly observed the Moody family –all dressed alike this morning in khakis and olive green shirts, with beige gloves-- walked up the sidewalk toward their house. What do they want now? She thought Warily. “Good afternoon Mrs. Bagwell, how are you this fine afternoon?” “I am well, thank you, and yourself?” “I am very happy to be alive on this blessed day that the Lord has made. My wife, Emily, and I noticed that your yard has been getting overgrown, and we heard you recently had surgery--” Get to the point, Jim, you're not helping my recovery right now. “And we thought we'd come to offer our services by having a work party at your house. We have brought our own tools in the van, and would love to do your yardwork absolutely free of charge.” Maude blinked. She was trying to think of a polite way to say no, but the yard did need work. The grass was almost approaching the 16 inch mark, and the city would file a complaint if it got any higher. Jane was busy working at a day camp, and Alexa had her paramedics course. Larry, Jane's brother, normally was happy to mow the lawn and weed the flower beds for her but this summer he had turned 18 and joined the army. And of course, she herself couldn't do it, what with her recent back surgery. Soon.... she promised herself, soon you will recover and be allowed to bend over again.... Maude yanked her mind back to the Moodys, who were standing there with identical gummy smiles on their faces. “Er, yes. Alright, then.” She said. “Make sure you don't pull up all the mint Alexa's growing behind the toolshed that she thinks I don't know about, though.” And Maude made sure to point out the mint plants, so the Moodys wouldn't think they were weeds. I still don't trust them... but they did make Mrs. GenericnonMoodywoman's yard look nice, even if the DID leave the dog in the house to make messes.... A few hours later, Jane's car pulled into the driveway. She and Alexa were home from camp and class. Maude was in a bikini on the roof, sunbathing. The Moodys had their heads bent over their work, trying not to look at her. “What the heck is that weird family doing in our yard?” Jane asked. “Planting secret bombs because we're not Christian enough for them?” “Don't give them ideas,” Jane said, stepping out of the car. Alexa got out too, taking a big swig out of her water bottle as she did so. Maude came out of the house just then, still in her bikini, with some lemonade. The Moodys thanked her politely and took a break. “Gee dad,” the youngest boy, Mitch, said. “It sure is good to help the widows, just like the bible says in James 1:27!” Maude stopped in her tracks. Widows? Widows? WHAT?! Water flew out Alexa's nose, and she started coughing. Jane face palmed, which was a bad idea, since she still had the car keys in her hand and succeeded only in klonking herself on the forehead. Fortunately, Mr. Moody mistook Alexa's tears of laughter for tears of sorrow. He glared at Mitch before turning to Maude and saying. “I'm sorry.... I didn't mean to bring up the sensitive topic. Has he been gone long?” Maude's mouth opened, then closed several times before finally settling on “uh....well... kind of...” Alexa finally stopped coughing. Jane offered her a tissue to wipe her face. “It's alright,” she told Mr. Moody. “It's just... we all miss grandpa very much....” “Now see here Mr. Moody,” said Maude, who had finally found her voice. “Well,” said Mrs. Moody, “time to get back to yard work.” Max started up the lawnmower and Maude's protests were drowned out as Jane and Alexa each took her hands and led her back to the house. “Now grandma!” Jane exclaimed. “Don't stop me Jane, I'm going to give him a piece of my mind!” “Oh but grandma, we could have so much fun with this....” Alexa said. “Yes yes,” Jane said eagerly. “They wanted to mow our lawn because you're a widow.... if they keep this up, we could have free yardwork all summer.” ““Besides,” Alexa cut in, “think of how Mr. Moody's head is going to explode at the end of the summer when you tell him he's been helping an evil, sinful, divorcee rather than a helpless widow?” Maude simmered for a minute, then slowly started to smile. “Oh girls,” she said. “I've taught you so well, what would I do without you?” “Your own yardwork,” said Jane. The second ending..... Alexa finally stopped coughing. Jane offered her a tissue to wipe her face. “It's alright,” she told Mr. Moody. “It's just...” But Maude had finally found her voice. “So.” she said in a dangerous voice. “So.” The Moodys looked confused. Alexa thought briefly of running into the house before the explosion hit, then decided she'd rather stay and watch the fireworks. “So,” Maude repeated. “You noticed an old woman living alone, and just assumed my husband died?” “Uh....” Said Mr. Moody. Jane inhaled sharply, then exhaled. Alexa carefully controlled her facial features, digging her nails into her palms to avoid.... laughter? Anger? Both? “I could very well still have a husband; he could be on vacation, or in the army, or... or What makes you even think I was ever married in the first place?” “Well, uh-” “My eyes, Mr. Moody, are up here.” “You...” Said Mr. Moody, forcing his eyes away from Maude's cleavage. “You are Mrs. Marple, are you--” “It's Ms. Marple.” Maude was really hitting her stride now. “And you, Mr. Moody,” she said, jabbing her finger in his face, “would do well not to make assumptions about people.” And with that, she turned on her heel and marched into the house, leaving the stunned Moodys staring after her. Jane noted that Mr. Moody's eyes had rarely left Maude's cleavage during the entire conversation and suppressed a shudder. “Come on Jane,” Alexa said. “We'd better, uh...” “Go make dinner for grandma!” “Right, come on!” They ran into the house after Maude, then opened one of the windows to listen to the Moody's conversation. “Should we leave, dad?” Max asked his father. “That lady was rude, and she's sunbathing on the roof half naked. I'm having a hard time not looking at her!” Jane and Alexa each threw each other identical looks of disgust. How old was this kid, 10? Perving on their grandma? Disgusting. “No, children,” said Mr. Moody, “we will finish that which we have started, for the Lord wants us to persevere and finish our tasks according to our abilities. We will continue to work here and we will go home afterwards and have a special prayer at bible time for Mrs.... or Miss, Marple. We will ask for advice as to how we may best witness to her.” “And we will make sure to ask her to be fully clothed if we ever come back,” They heard Mrs. Moody say in a barely audible voice. “Think of the children...” the lawnmower started up again, and the 2 cousins couldn't hear any more. “So,” said Alexa icily, drawing away from the window, “that's how they want to play it.” “Well,” said Jane, “two can play at this game.” “What's your plan, Jane?” “They want to witness to us? Think about what would happen if we were to witness back.”
  7. “Mrs. Clifton, you have some visitors. I hope you have a nice visit.” Miss Jenkins said as she disappeared from the room. Mrs. Clifton was sitting in a reclining chair, reading Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban. She looked a little tired but otherwise healthy. Her hair was pulled back into a silvery bun. Her face was peacefully calm. She wore a light pink dress and matching slippers. Mrs. Clifton waved them to come closer. Howdy Doody shook her hand. “Good morning!” he said in a voice that was way too cheery for anyone at this time of the morning. “I'm Howdy Doody, and this is my wife Doodley.” “I'm Bax,” said Bax, shaking Mrs. Clifton's hand. “I'm Bollie,” said Bollie, shaking Mrs. Clifton's hand so hard her teeth rattled. “I'm Bitch,” said Bitch, also shaking her hand. “And I'm Baddie,” said Baddie, as she squeezed Mrs. Clifton's hand as hard as her little hand could. Even that was enough to tire Mrs. Clifton out these days, but she decided to do what she could to remain positive. She smiled. “What a lovely family!” She exclaimed as the Doodys stared back at her with gummy vacant smiles that didn't quite reach their eyes. “I've seen your family around, and I can't believe we've never officially met.” In fact, the Doodys kept to themselves so much that gossip about them ran rampant. Nobody really knew them very well at all, actually. Howdy continued to smile as he told Mrs. Clifton about finding Honey. Mrs. Clifton wasn't good at hiding her emotions, so Howdy tried to reassure her. “Don't worry,” he said robotically. “No harm was done.” That you know of Mrs. Clifton thought warily. She didn't think the Doodys would intentionally harm Honey, but with the way they treated the children sometimes.... she forced herself to pay attention to Howdy as he explained how Sharon had told them where to find her. “It is especially hard to be away from my precious Honey,” she said out loud. I will have to have a talk with Sharon about who she gives my information to. “I know she is a very busy lady. I'm hoping to be back at my house by the end of summer.” Oh dear, that was the wrong thing to say, wasn't it? These pain pills they give me cloud my mind so much. I wish I didn't need them. “We're sorry to hear about your troubles,” Doodley Doody said, wringing her hands. She looked at Howdy, who nodded. Doodley resumed speaking. “We want to offer to take care of Honey until you can come home. Your house is right around the corner from us, and the children can walk there every day. They really like Honey, and would be happy to help.” Mrs. Doody clasped her hands together and bit her lip. Was it Mrs. Clifton's imagination, or did she sound nervous? Poor thing probably isn't used to leaving the house, let alone talking to strangers. Or do I just think that because the Narco is kicking in really hard? I need to lie down. I can't think. “I'm afraid that would be a lot of trouble,” she said through a haze of pain pills. Mr. Doody took a step closer. His smile remained fixed. “Mrs. Clifton, we would like to take care of Honey.” Mrs. Clifton smiled. “You're all too kind.” She glanced at the bible tucked under Mr. Doodys arm. “Are you Christians?” Oh why did I ask that? That's a personal question. Howdy Doody smiled even wider, if that were possible, and said, “Yes. I am only a sinner saved by the blood of Jesus and trusting Him.” Mrs. Clifton closed her eyes. When she opened them, the Doodys were still there. Howdy looked like he was about to open his Bible, and just the thought of sitting through a bible study made Mrs. Clifton tired. So so tired. “I knew you were not an ordinary family,” she said. “I too love Jesus. I would be very grateful if you would care for Honey.” Mrs. Clifton wasn't sure the family knew the same Jesus she did. The Jesus she loved would never have spanked Bollie out in public simply for asking her mother for a third animal cracker. Howdy Doody said more things, and opened his Bible and read from it, but Mrs. Clifton was so tired she didn't understand a word. Finally, a nurse came in and told the Doody family that Mrs. Clifton needed her rest. The nurse helped Mrs. Clifton get to bed. As she finally drifted off, she thought, I really must remember to call Sharon and give her what for.
  8. Trynn

    Sharon Meets the Doodys

    Another rough draft of my parody Summer With The Doodys. In this episode, the Doodys meet Mrs. Clifton's neighbor, who has been taking care of Honey and is devastated because she's been searching the neighborhood all morning. She's desperately hoping she won't have to start distributing flyers. Sharon Baker looked up from her work. Her heart sank Oh no she groaned inwardly. A family with 4 children was ringing he neighbor's doorbell. One of the boys looked at her, and she quickly bent back over her flower garden. When they find out she's not home, maybe they'll leave. Sharon continued digging with her spade, even though the hole was already deep enough. Leave leave leave leave leave The two parents held hands as they and their children walked toward her. Sharon grabbed one of the little containers of flowers and gently pulled it out of the carton, being careful not to tear the actual plant. “Hello there,” she said. After an awkward silence, “May I help you folks?” “We hope you can. I'm Howdy Doody, and this is my wife, Doodley Doody, and my children: Bax, Bollie, Bitch, and Baddie.” Before Sharon could react to this, one of the boys spoke up. “I have an easy way that you can remember which name goes with which boy. You see, lots of people confuse our names. We tell them that “a” comes first in the alphabet. Bax is the oldest, and he has the name with 'a.'” The family stood there smiling and blinking as Sharon tried to take all this in. She hadn't had her morning cup of coffee yet, and was struggling to think. “That.... is a good way to remember them...” her voice trailed off. Howdy Doody wiped the sweat off his forehead. “We live right around the corner on Raspberry Lane. Last night, a golden retriever, whose name we found out is Honey, was looking for food in our trash cans. We discovered a tag on her collar, and it appears the owner of the dog lives there,” Howdy pointed to Mrs. Clifton's house. Sharon's heart sank even lower. She knew Honey hadn't been there that morning when she'd gone over to take her out, and she had been praying someone would find her, but the Doodys? Really? Sharon was going to have some choice words with God later, that was for sure. “Did Honey get out? I'm so sorry. Do you still have her?” Sharon's hands shook slightly as she gently set the plant in the soft earth. “We do. Don't worry. She's actually in the van.” Sharon let out a sigh of relief. “Oh good.” She hadn't thought the Doodys would do anything maliciously, but they didn't seem like the sharpest crayons in the box. “Yes. The house on the corner is Mrs. Clifton's home, but she's recovering from a broken hip in the Generic Small Town Nursing Home.” “That's too bad,” Doodley Doody exclaimed.” “I know,” Sharon smoothed the dirt over the flower and patted it with the shovel. When no one said anything else, she told them, “Mrs. Clifton has been like a grandmother to me. I've been helping her by taking care of Honey. I go over in the evenings and give Honey food and water.” Sharon knew she was babbling, but was unable to stop herself. “She must've dug a hole under the fence. I've been so busy lately and not paying as much attention to the dog as I should.” Suddenly Sharon was worried she'd said too much. Howdy and Doodley Doody exchanged a look that made Sharon's heart rate start to speed up. “Oh where are my manners? I forgot to introduce myself. I'm Sharon. Sharon Baker.” But Howdy Doody was no longer paying attention. “You know what,” he said, smiling robotically. “Our children would love to care for Mrs. Clifton's dog.” He took a step closer to her as he spoke. “You don't need to worry about paying them, either. They are happy to get the experience since they're hoping for a dog of their own sometime.” “Well, that's not...” Sharon started to say, then glanced at the children. They all had such hopeful looks on their faces. Bax was biting his lip while fidgeting with the hem of his polo shirt. Baddie's eyes had gone wide. Bollie and Bitch were doing their best to keep a straight face, showing no emotion except those blank empty smiles all Doodys wore. Sharon relented. “I would be very grateful,” she said. “Honey loves children, so I know she will love yours as well.” Despite her misgivings, she felt she had made the right decision. Suddenly the Doody children's blank empty smiles turned into real ones. They looked genuinely happy. “My mom recently became ill,” Sharon said, putting the shovel back in her tool kit and standing up. “And I have moved her into my home. Mrs. Clifton has been worried that my caring for the dog is too much since I'm spending so much time helping my mom. With Honey escaping, I think Mrs. Clifton was right. I'm sure she'll be happy if your children would like to watch Honey.” It would probably be good for the children to take the dog for nice, long walks. And good for the dog too. And I do have so much work to do. I'm so tired... “I think we'll go over to meet Mrs. Clifton,” said Howdy Doody. “We can keep Honey at our house until we get the hole fixed.” “Umm.” Sharon had figured she would just keep Honey inside till the hole got fixed. It probably wouldn't take long, really. She glanced again at the faces of the 4 Doody children, and relented yet again. Anything to put real smiles on those children's faces instead of those robotic blank stares they thought looked happy. How much happiness do these children get? I'm probably being too judgmental. The Doodys are weird, but they'd probasbly never harm Honey. What could possibly go wrong? “Thank you all so much,” Sharon said. “Let me give you my phone number, in case you need to get ahold of me for some reason.” Even as Sharon gave Howdy Doody her number, she wondered if she were making a mistake. Letting the Doody children watch the dog was one thing, but giving Howdy her number? God, Sharon prayed as the Doodys walked away. Please let this be the right thing. Let the Doodys surprise me. Help me not to judge them too quickly. I know they're weird, but...they know you. Help those children have some real happiness, Lord. Amen.
  9. Jane shivered. She turned up the setting on her electric blanket as Maude aimed a blowdryer at the window. She was covering them with plastic for the winter, which was a pain in the ass to do. Alexa, having already helped her grandmother attach the plastic to the windows, was boiling water on the stove for hot chocolate and Kahlua. All of a sudden, the doorbell rang. Grandma Maude glanced out the window at the swiftly falling snow. "Who on earth is out on a day like this?" "The mailman?" Jane asked. "I know Alexa's been expecting a package." "I have," said Alexa. "And it's somewhat expensive, so I asked the post man to require a signature." "Again? How many Christmas presents is that you've bought yourself? 5?" "No, grandma. I bought myself three Christmas presents. The other 3 are birthday presents." Alexa threw open the door and said, "I'm so glad you're here!" Unfortunately, Alexa was not looking at the UPS man. She was staring at the bundled up Doodys. At least, Alexa thought they were the Doodys. They were the only people she knew who would be insane enough to wear long denim skirts over their snowpants. "We Wish you a Merry Christmas...." Sang The Doodys. Alexa grabbed the dog, who was making a beeline for the open door. She hugged the dog close to her chest, as if trying to absorb her body heat. Alexa was so shocked the Doodys were singing something secular that she forgot to note that their voices were off key, and that some of them weren't even bothering to sing at the same speed. Alexa hadn't noticed her grandma leave, but she must have, because when Maude came back she had on a thick winter coat. Jane refused to get out from under the electric blanket. She pulled it over her head and groaned. "Close the door, it's freezing!" No one heard her, and neither Maude nor Alexa felt like standing out on the porch listening to the Doodys sing. So they stood there, letting the heat escape. "How nice!" Maude exclaimed forcefully when the Doodys had finished the song. She was desperately hoping the Doodys weren't going to try and sing another one. "Would you like something hot to drink?" "No thank you," said Howdy Doody, and Maude was glad he was wearing a facewarmer, because she didn't want to see the robotic look on his face. "Well, then, thank you for singing. Have a nice day." Maude started to shut the door. "But--" said one of the children. Maude hesitated. That was her mistake. The Doodys began to sing Silent Night. "It's too cold!" Maude shouted. She slammed the door. She'd already sat through one song and besides, the cats were starting to act like they were thinking of escaping out the open door. Maude could hear the family still singing, but she didn't care. "What are the Doodys thinking?!" She exclaimed. "What's the temperature?" "--20, grandma," Alexa said, checking her watch. "What's that in American, honey?" Maude snapped. She was in no mood for Alexa's metric bullshit. "Uh, in Fahrenheit that would be...." Alexa googled. "-5." "Well, that's not as bad as I thought, but still! With this windchill, it feels much colder than that!" Jane poked her head out of the blanket. "Is that hot chocolate done yet?" "No." Said Grandma Maude. "I turned off the stove when the Doodys showed up. In case they thought they were gonna be here a while." "But grandma," Alexa said, gently putting the squirming puppy on the floor. "That could have been an excuse to--" "I don't need an excuse," said grandma Maude, taking off her coat and draping over a nearby chair. "It's simply too cold to stand on the porch and listen to them caterwaul. I mean, sing." Alexa turned the stove back on. "Besides," said grandma Maude. "I needed to give them a piece of my mind, and I didn't want the house to catch fire." "I'm glad you did," growled Jane. "They're so inconsiderate!" "They're wearing coats and snowpants," said Alexa, handing Jane a steaming cup of hot cocoa. "Ow!" Jane winced. "Oh, by the way, it's freezing cold. Straight out of the freezer, I pulled it." "That joke hasn't been funny since the first time my mom said it. When we were 2!" "Who do you think she got it from?" Asked Grandma Maude, attacking the window plastic with a hair dryer. "Damn!" Maude had accidentally put a large hole in the plastic. She threw down the hair dyer in disgust. "Time for new windows?" Asked Alexa. "You can ask your good friends The Doodys to help you install them. They'll be glad to help you, since you're a 'widow' and all." Grandma Maude glared before she burst out laughing. "They are hilarious, aren't they?" "Sure,"Jane said sarcastically. "We'll look on this and laugh. If we ever move to Florida!" I don't really know where I am going with this. This just kind of ends because I ran out of idea. I need to think of maybe other ways this could go... and or a conclusion.
  10. In going through the book A Summer With The Moodys, I have noticed a pattern. My rough drafts that I've been posting are mainly of the Doody's neighbors and acquaintances and how they see the Doodys. But the thing is, all the characters are too similar. Part of that may be that I'm not really that great at writing (yet), but part of it is that most characters the Doodys interact with in this book are described as being, "elderly," "old," "older man," "grandmotherly," etc. I know that the Maxwells have a Church of the Holy Nursing Home, but do they never interact with people of different ages? Even the lady at the City Hall is old. Does Sarah truly never interact with anyone under the age of 50, besides her family members? This is truly annoying. I might have to change some things around just for some variety. Which I'm still learning how to write anyway.
  11. I've decided to go ahead with the "Summer With The Doodys" idea. These posts are my first drafts... lol I have you guys to help and critique, right? Right. So, here's chapter one. Mr. Doody hears a noise and goes out to investigate. But he doesn't plan on waking up his neighbor, Mr. Delome. Mr. Delome jerked out of bed, heart racing. It took him a moment to realize where he was. His own bed, his own house. He heard again the loud clang! clang! Clang! Mr. Delome threw on a robe and cinched it tight at the waist. He hurriedly stepped into his slippers. He pulled back the curtain, but looking out the window, he couldn't see anything. The streetlight was out across the street. All he could make out was the branches of the trees that separated his house from his neighbors, the Doodys. He didn't particularly care for the Doodys but he didn't want any harm to come to them either. Mr. Delome hurried to the door. Clang! Clang! Clang! Mr. Delome opened the door, flipped on the porch light, and peered out. Mr. Doody, in his pajamas and robe, was banging a metal trash can lid with a broomstick. “Is that you, Howdy?” Mr. Delome called out. Mr. Doody looked up, startled. “Are you okay?” Mr. Doody cleared his throat. “Oh, sure thing, Mr. Delome.” Mr. Doody looked around nervously, broomstick out like a weapon. “I'm taking care of a little stray animal.” Mr. Doody turned around, as if expecting something to approach from the back. “Everything's under control.” Mr. Delome shook his head. Crazy Doodys, he thought as he turned off the porch light and shut the door. Mr. Delome heard Mr. Doody scream, and then a dog was barking. He thought about going back and double checking to make sure Howdy Doody was ok, then decided to go back to bed. In his day, stray dogs had been taken care of by Animal Control.
  12. Trick or treating with the Moodys Jane and Alexa, needing little excuse to go out trick or treating, had quickly volunteered to take their little cousins, Kate and Xander with them. They were going out for the kids, of course. So of course they had to wear their own costumes and have their own trick of treat bags. They had spent weeks scouting out the best neighborhoods for the event, and had even put the family dog in a lion costume. Alexa was going as Wednesday Addams, and had argued that she needed “kitty kat” to complete the look. Jane had made noises about people who bought animals from the shelter to use as costume props, and Alexa had pointed out that taking the well loved family dog for a walk in a costume was hardly the same thing as adopting a black cat to complete a witch outfit and then dumping it the next day. Grandma Maude had rolled her eyes at this, but decided it wasn't a battle she wanted to pick. Alexa had tried to convince her cousins to go as other members of The Addams Family, but Jane pointed out that neither one of them had the figure to be Morticia, and at any rate the littles didn't even get the reference. Jane firmly decided she was going as the statue of Liberty, and that was final. “This is the best neighborhood,” Jane said as Alexa, Kate and Xander and stepped out of the car. Alexa set “Kitty Kat” down on the ground. The little dog immediately began trying to get out of her costume, but Alexa had put in enough safety pins to make that impossible. “Hey look,” said Kate, “there's the first house, and their porch light is on. Let's go!” “Oh wait Kate! Kate no! Kay come back--” but Kate and her brother were already racing up the walk. Alexa sighed. “What?” Jane asked. “What's wrong with that house?” “It's the Doodys' house, Jane.” “Oh dear,” Jane said as she dropped her keys into her purse and picked up her torch. “Yeah.... I'm not really sure this is a good idea...” “Why not? We could give them a really good scare.” Jane turned on the torch. Paper flamed leapt out of the prop. She adjusted the state of liberty crown on her forehead. “Or at least, you could. You're dressed like a witch. Sort of.” “And little Xander went as Satan.... we should be so proud.” Speaking of the devil, he'd already rang the Doodys' doorbell. Jane and Alexa hurried to catch up, the dog trotting at their heals. Mrs. Doody opened the door. “Hello?” “Trick or Treat!” Shouted Kate and Xander, holding out their little plastic pumpkins. Mrs. Doody blinked. “Er....” she glanced around at the group on her porch. “We don't really celebrate--” “I'm sorry about that,” Jane said, attempting to be polite. “The porch light was on so the kids thought....” “Oh, it's that night again, isn't it?” Asked Mrs. Doody, pressing her hands to her temples. She had a headache. Mr. Moody and Mollie came out and joined her. “Why don't you go inside, dear,” Mr. Moody told her. “I'll handle this.” “Thank you dear,” said Mrs. Doody. “I need to lie down.” “We left the porch light on for Aunt Grace, who is coming to visit later tonight. We do not celebrate Halloween, but if you wish, we are just starting to have our evening bible study. You could join us--” Katie's smile was starting to falter. “You.... don't have candy?” Mollie stared wide eyed at Katie, who was dressed as Queen Elsa (drink!). Her eyes also took in Xander's devil costume and Alexa's “witch” dress. Alexa suddenly wished she had known someone with a black cat who would let her borrow it. It would freak out Mollie Moody even more. She could tell Mr. Moody was a wee bit frightened of their appearance, because a vein in his temple was twitching. Her whole body froze. She did not want to be on the receiving end of Mr. Moody's anger again. “Hold on, daddy.” Mollie Moody spoke up. “I have something for them.” She darted into the house. Jane had been trying to get them out of there quickly and efficiently. Now, however, the only thing to do was wait in the awkward silence. Finally, Mr. Moody said, “Celebrating the devil's birthday, are we?” “No,” said Xander, thinking Mr. Moody was joking, “my birthday isn't till December.” Alexa face palmed. Katie, who was a little older and a little more familiar with religious people's objections to the holiday, spoke up. “We're not celebrating the devil,” she said. “We're just trick or treating.” Mr. Doody, who had just stared open mouthed at Xander's comment, caught onto this quickly. “Yes, little girl,” he said, “but do you know why you go trick or treating every year?” “To get candy,” replied Katie. “Well,” said Jane, “nice seeing you this evening, but I really think we should--” But just then, Mollie reappeared in the doorway with some home made cookies wrapped in plastic. “These are for you,” she said, dropping 2 cookies each into Xander and Katie's orange plastic pumpkins. “And here's a little reading material, too.” She gave them each a million dollar tract. “Thank you,” Alexa said to Mollie. And she meant it. It wasn't the 9 year old's fault she was living in a crazy cult family. Her intentions were probably pure, but Mr. Doody was warming up for an anti Halloween sermon. “That was a very nice gesture. And now we really need to get going.” “Yes,” Jane said, “lots of houses to hit. Thank you for the offer of bible study but, uh, our parents told us not to enter anyone's houses.” “Yes,” said Alexa. “Even grown women must obey their parents, eh Mr. Doody?” She had already put an arm around Katie and was steering her toward the porch steps. “Just a moment, girls. I have to ask you something.” Jane grabbed Xander's arm. “Come on,” she told him firmly. She smiled at Mollie and thanked her for the cookies. “Girls, do you see yourselves as good people?” Mr. Doody called after them. Jane and Xander kept going, but Alexa turned around and said, “No, Mr. Moody. I'm a witch. I'm as evil as they come. And if you don't leave us alone, I'll put a spell on you.” Mr. Doody's mouth dropped open. She and Jane hurried the children from the porch. That night, Mr. Doody led the family in a 2 hour long bible study wherein he ranted against the evils of Halloween, and prayed for Alexa's soul to be freed from the spirit which had obviously possessed it. “I have seen her eyes,” he said. “There was evil in her eyes!” Mollie Doody doubted this. She had seen nothing but compassion and gratefulness in Alexa's eyes, but she dismissed the doubts immediately. Her father had said Alexa had the devil in her, and her father was always right. Mollie decided to say a special prayer for Alexa in her room at night just before bed. The next morning, the Moody family woke up early, as was their custom. At first they thought they were seeing snow, but then they realized their trees had been strewn with toilet paper. Mitch smelled something weird outside, and discovered, to his horror, that their house had been egged. He ran to tell father, who shook his head and put an arm around his son. “Truly, the devil was out to get us tonight. We will have to pray a hedge of protection around the house.” Mitch shuddered, glad he had his father there to protect him from the evils of the outside world.
  13. Trynn

    Pranking The Doodys

    8. The title of this chapter is “Business rolls in.” Was that supposed to be a pun? In any case, this is the story where Maude gives the Moodys a rat to petsit, as a joke. Maude Bagwell went to the telephone. “Grandma's not serious, is she?” cousin Jane whispered to Alexa, who shrugged helplessly. “Hey, I have my hearing aid in today girls.” “Sorry grandma.” The cousins chorused. “I mean, come on, I'm old. What's old age for if you can't mess with people?” “How exactly are we--” Jane began, but Grandmama cut her off. "Besides, the Moodys totally deserve it. You should hear what they did to poor Honey.” “You mean Mrs. GenericNonMoodyFemale's dog?” Asked Alexa. Grandma nodded. “The children, instead of pet sitting her at their home, basically locked honey up in the house and only let her out twice a day. They fed her, but they didn't let her run around the yard much except to do her business. It's no wonder Mrs. Genericnonmoodyfemale came back to find that the dog had chewed up the couch cushions. Poor dog was bored. Not to mention all the messes all over the house, because most dogs go to the bathroom more than twice a day.” Grandma Maude dialed the phone. It was answered on the first ring. “Hellothisismax!” Well, it's better than the robot speak, but at least I could understand what he was saying then. Annoyed, she asked, in a really loud voice, “Hello? Is this the Moodys? Anyone there?” “Yes, hello,” Max responded a little more slowly. “Ah, yes, this is Jane Marple. I need to speak to--” she glanced down at the flyer, which she'd salvaged out of the recycle bin, “Mix.” She grinned. Alexa thought about double checking grandma's meds, then shrugged. “Hello, Mrs. Marple! This is Max. How may I help you?” By calling me Miss or Ms instead of “Mrs.” thought Maude. She tried to keep the laughter out of her voice as she responded. “I’m leaving on a trip tomorrow —it was a last-minute thing— and need you to watch Snickers. I know you will love him. He is easy to take care of, and I’m sure you’ll get along well. Can I stop over tomorrow morning to give instructions and leave Snickers with you?” “Snickers?” Jane asked, “who is--” Grandma Maude gave her a look, and she stopped talking. Jane turned to look helplessly at Alexa, who gave her the don't-look-at-me-I-don't-know-what-the-fuck-is-going-on look. “Yes, ma’am. That would be great.” They heard Max say, and then he hung up. Jane was first to speak. “Grandma what--” “Relax girls, I'm not trusting Nox to those people.” “I know,” Alexa said. “But--” “Who or what is Snickers?” Finished Jane. Grandmama grinned, reached behind her chair, and pulled out a cage. Inside the cage was a large rat. Alexa took a step back. “grandma, you know I'm allergic to rodents.” “Where did you even find that?” Jane wanted to know. “Out in the garden, eating up my strawberries.” Grandmama replied. “I thought it would be fun to mess with the Moodys a little, after what they did to poor Honey.” “You know you're going to have to pay them, right?” “I'm paying the kids,” grandmama corrected, putting the rat cage outside on the back porch. “That Mr. Moody keeps them so tightly controlled, this is probably the only way they'll ever get spending money, poor things.” “And if the rat doesn't survive?” “Then the parents will make the kids abandon this stupid business idea before they actually hurt someone else's beloved pet. Now, go get some sleep girls, we leave early in the morning.” The next morning, Jane and Alexa went to drop off “Snickers” at the Moodys's house. The trip hadn't really been last minute. Alexa's mom worked at a summer camp, and one week out of the summer, the family would visit her there. The camp was generous, and any family members were allowed to stay with the staff member free of charge. Maude looked forward to it every year, and this time Alexa and Jane were going. Alexa hoped the Moodys wouldn't ask about the dog. Nox had already been safely dropped off at Aunty Marian's house, a much more trustworthy person than the robotic religious Moodys. Mrs. Moody opened the door. “Hi, I'm Jane Marple,” Mrs. Bagwell said, extending a hand. Please tell me the adult gets the reference... But there was no trace of a laugh as Mrs. Moody smiled and shook Maude's hand. “Nice to meet you, Miss Marple, come on in.” Mrs. Bagwell bustled in with a small dog carrier and a bag of supplies. She walked straight into the living room. The children all stared at her with their mouths hanging open. What are they staring at me like that for... do I have something in my teeth? Jane was wondering if the problem was that the Moody children had never seen a woman in pants before. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw Mrs. Moody shake her head and press her finger to her lips. Jane was suddenly very hot, even though the Moody's air conditioned house was quite cool. Maude peeked in Snickers ’ home. “Now, Snickers boy, I’m going to leave you for a little while, but these children will take care of you.” She tried not to grin, but it was very hard to keep a straight face. “I want you to be good. I’m so sorry you can’t come.” Mrs. Bagwell set the carrier on the floor and opened the door. A small rat cautiously crawled into the middle of the living room. At the look on Mrs. Moody's face, Jane and Alexa almost burst out laughing. Maude alone kept her face straight as the oldest girl gasped, “this is Snickers?” The two boys could only stare, wide eyed, as “snickers” ran across the room and made a beeline for the littlest girl, jumping right up into her lap. The little girl giggled. “I like this rat,” she said. “He's nice.” Maude smiled. “Yes, Snickers is a rat. You won’t find a friendlier rat than him.” The oldest girl nodded respectfully, but Maude could tell by the look on her face that the girl wasn't so sure she wanted a rat for a friend. Maude hurried to Maddie. What if the rat bit her? She didn't think it would, but.... “I told you he was friendly. But, whatever you do, don’t pull his tail. That is the only time he will bite. Also, he needs to be let out once a day to run around the house.” Maude pretended not to notice the horrified look on Mrs. Moody's face. It had been a few weeks since the surgery, but she was still in pain from restraining her laughter. “Don’t worry, he shouldn’t cause any problems. Snickers also likes to sit on shoulders.” Jane quickly turned her fit of laughter into a fit of coughing. Alexa slapped her on the back. “We'll be out in the car, grandma,” she said. She grabbed her cousin's arm and yanked her out the door. As soon as they thought they were out of earshot, they both burst out laughing. “Oh, yes,” said Maude, trying to get the attention away from her granddaughters. “One last thing. Don’t be surprised if he chatters his teeth. He’ll do that when he’s happy.” “Okay,” said the oldest boy. Maude handed the oldest girl the bag of rat supplies she'd picked up at the pet store. “I'll be gone for ten days, and I'll pay you when I get back. Do you all have any questions?” After a moment of silence, Max smiled. “ No, ma’am. I think it will be easy enough. Thank you for trusting us to watch Snickers for you.” Maude patted Max. “Thank you for taking care of him. Well, I’d better be going.” Mrs. Moody walked Maude to the door and waved good-bye. Maude, Jane, and Alexa drove away, laughing hysterically.
  14. Trynn

    Hiking With The Doodys

    “We should have brought a first aid kit,” Mitch offered. “That would have been really smart. I wonder why Aunt Olga didn’t tell us to.” The truth was that Aunt Olga simply hadn't thought of it. She'd thought, like most people who hiked regularly, that a first aid kit was just an obvious thing one should bring, much as how one always brings a map (or GPS) on a road trip. Aunt Olga was the type of woman who assumed that most people generally had enough brain cells that they could figure out the obvious things for themselves. And so it had completely slipped her mind that the Moody family would need to be told to bring a first aid kit, along with extra socks, and whatever other basic necessities you might need out in the woods. Unfortunately, Mr. Moody had possibly a few less brain cells than Aunt Olga had anticipated, and so here they were, by the stream, with a lot of blisters and Mitch with a wet foot. Three hikers rounded the bend and approached them. “Hello!” Grandma Maude greeted them cheerfully. Mitch quickly stuffed his feet back into his shoes and stepped forward, holding his sock. “Good morning, Miss Marple! I didn't know you enjoyed hiking! One of us ran into a bit of a mishap on the bridge and they were wondering if you have an extra pair of socks. They would be very grateful if you did.” Oh my.... Grandma Maude laughed, “So you got your foot wet?” “How did you know?” Seriously, you said you had a mishap on the bridge... I notice you are all among the living, so it's not hard to deduce what else could have possibly happened. “You’re holding your sock.” Alexa giggled. Jane gave Alexa the “shut the fuck up” look. Alexa quickly turned her laughter into a hacking cough. Mitch swallowed hard. He had given it away with that. “Yes, ma’am. And my sister has a blister.” “Let me guess: You’re flatlanders. Am I right?” Alexa asked, her blonde ponytail bobbing back and forth Grandma Maude shot Alexa a glare, but Alexa blinked back innocently. Grandma Maude stifled a smile. It wasn't like the Moodys would even be aware the term was a thinly veiled insult. In fact, Maude Bagwell could tell that Mitch had no clue what she was talking about because he had that dopey grin frozen on his face that all the Moody children wore when they weren't entirely sure of what was happening. Finally, Mitch replied. “We are.” There was an awkward silence, and then Jane spoke up. “We have a blister kit, but no extra socks.” This wasn't entirely true. As former boy scouts, Jane, Alexa, and Grandma Maude knew to be prepared for just about anything. However, they'd only brought one extra pair of socks each, and, in addition to being unsure if their socks would even fit Mitch's big foot.... Seriously, Alexa fumed privately, who has the utter nerve, the GALL to ask strangers for extra socks?! Do the Moodys think these things grow on trees? Jane shot Alexa a look that meant she was thinking the same thing. It's one thing to ask for first aid supplies. She thought, as she searched through her bag. People run out of those all the time, and they're relatively cheap. But socks? Grandma Maude caught Jane and Alexa's gaze and rolled her eyes before quickly turning back to the Moodys. “Did you already use your blister pads and bandaids?” “No,” Max shook his head. “Aunt Olga didn't tell us to bring a first aid kit, so we just didn't think of it.” Flatlanders indeed! Thought Maude as she pressed her lips into a thin line. Out loud all she said was, “hmm.” Jane turned to Alexa. “Alexa, is the first aid kit in your bag?” “Who knows what all you stuck in mine when you thought I wasn't looking.” Alexa said as she shrugged off her backpack and unzipped it. “It's like you think I want to carry all your extra weight for you.” “Sorry Cuz, just wanted to make sure you were prepared, that's all.” “I am always prepared, Jane.” “Yeah, so prepared in fact that you decided to bring half your library with you?” “I thought I'd get bored!” “Books are weight, Alexa.” “But...” “Your Kindle's in the side pocket.” Alexa blinked. She and Jane burst out laughing. “What would I do without you.” Alexa asked as she took out the blister kit. “I didn't even know these things existed.... here you go, Mr. Moody.” She handed the blister kit to Dad. “Thank you so much,” Dad said. He found a thick pad and applied it to Mollie's blister. Jane vaguely wondered why the 13 year old girl couldn't apply her own damn blister pad, but wasn't sure she wanted a confrontation, so she said nothing. Alexa began to take pity on the poor dumb flatlanders. “I've been in your shoes before,” she said. “Blisters are no fun. Anyone else got one?” Jane, asked Mitch, “What happened?” “I was trying to beat my time crossing the stream,” Mitch admitted. “So on my second crossing, I was in such a hurry that I slipped and fell part way in.” Jane glanced at the “bridge,” if you could even call it that. Someone had come along and laid some logs across the stream, side by side. The logs weren't even tied together, and it looked precarious. I knew the Moodys were dumb, but I didn't know they were this dumb..... holy cow. Grandma Maude suppressed a smile. “How..... tragic,” she said. “You all can keep several blister pads, because with a wet sock, you'll probably need them.” She watched as Mr. Moody took out some blister pads, then handed the kit back to her. “Are you going to the lake?” She asked, trying to be polite. “Yes, we are; thank you for your generosity.” Mitch handed a million-dollar-bill tract to Grandma Maude. “This isn’t real, but if it was, that’d be incredible. It has the million- dollar question on the back.” “If it was real, I'd wonder what bank you robbed,” Grandma Maude said. She was well familiar with the tracts. Alexa had come home from her job at Insert Name of Popular Restaurant Here ranting about the idiot who'd left her one instead of a tip. “The million Dollar question....” Jane started to say. “Is, 'Will Bernie Sanders win the 2016 election?'” Alexa finished. “No, no, Alexa,” Jane corrected, “It's, 'will Alexa show up to Joshua's party in an appropriate outfit, or will she be wearing something weird?'” “Well I think the real million dollar question is, 'will I ever find a date for Joshua's party or am I going to have to show up alone?'” “Girls!” Grandma Maude stopped them before they could get into a more serious argument. She turned back to the Moodys. “Thanks,” She said, with all the enthusiasm she could muster. “That's.... neat.” Grandma Maude jerked her head in Alexa and Jane's direction. Jane caught on first. “Oh yes, I would like one too please.” She held out her hand to Mr. Moody, who gave her a tract. “I would also like to read what the, er, real million dollar question is, Mr. Moody,” Alexa said humbly, wondering what the fuck this was about. “Oh, and I'd like one for my husband,” Grandma Maude asked, with a twinkle in her eye. “I know he is minimally interested in such things.” “And I'd like one for my little niece, Jessica.” Alexa asked. “And I'd--” “That's enough, girls,” Grandma Maude said firmly. “We don't want to exhaust the poor Moodys's supply.” The Moodys crossed the stream without saying goodbye. Alexa turned to her grandmother. “What the every loving fuck--” she wanted to know. Maude sighed. “Alexa, have I taught you nothing?” “Well, you taught me that when a man and a woman--” “No no, not that. What have I taught you about fires?” “How to start one with one match,” Jane said. “I'm guessing you're thinking kindling?” “That's correct,” Maude said. “the paper this is made out of is perfect for making fire starters.” She turned over the tract. “The million dollar question,” she read out loud, “is, 'Do you know where you are going when you die?'” Jane and Alexa started to hike on ahead of Maude. “Hey, come back!” Maude exclaimed, “we have to snark on this!” But Jane and Alexa were already too far up the path.
  15. Trick of treating with the Doodys, part 2 (because I am a bit dissatisfied with the way the last one went.) While Jane and Alexa took Katie and Xander trick or treating, Grandma Maude took her younger great grandchildren, Madison and Mason. Jane and Alexa hadn't felt they could manage 4 children by themselves, and Katie and Xander didn't want to go T&Ting with the babies anyway. So Madison and Mason dressed as Elsa (drink!) and Fluttershy, respectively. The 3 year old was a bit scared to dress up in such a “girly” costume, but Maude was quick to reassure him that, “anybody who makes fun of you just isn't comfortable in their own skin. Besides, lots of grown up men are huge My Little Pony fans. You know your uncle T? He never misses an episode.” “Really?” Mason squealed. All the little kids liked uncle T. “That's a fact.” Maude said firmly. “Now get out of the car, kids. Let's start with this house on the corner.” If Maude had known that that was the Moody house, she would have skipped it. If she hadn't been so preoccupied with internal fuming about “boy” costumes vs “girl” costumes, she would have noticed that most of the other trick or treaters were giving the place a wide berth. Maude rang the doorbell. Mr. Moody opened it. “Now, what do you say kids?” She bent down to ask Mason and Madison. “TRICK OR TREEEEEEEAT?!” The twins shouted, not in unison. Mr. Moody opened his mouth, then closed it. “I thought you turned the porch light off, dad,” said Max, coming up behind him. “I did, son.” Mr. Moody replied. “I think it's set to come on automatically when people come up...” “Oh, Mr. Moody, I'm so sorry. We saw the light before we got here.” Maude took Mason's hand and reached for Madison's. “We'll just be--” “It's ok, Miss. Marple.” Mr. Moody said, “some small animal must've triggered the light. I've got to figure out how to shut it off and make it stay off.” “But while you're here,” said Max, “won't you take one of these?” He slipped two Million dollar tracts into the twins' outstretched orange plastic pumpkin buckets. “They have the million dollar question on the back.” Maude stared at Max. “You gave my great grandbabies tracts for Halloween? Instead of candy?” “Yes,” Mr. Moody said, “It's better for their souls and their teeth. Have a good evening.” He started to close the door. Maude stuck her foot in it. “You gave my great grandbabies, who can't even read, tracts?” “Let me give them some cookies, dad,” said Mollie, who had reappeared in the doorway with some cookies in her hands. “Mollie!” Dad said, shocked. “I already told you, we won't give out treats on Halloween, lest people think we are celebrating the devil's birthday right along with them! Go to your room and pray for forgiveness and an attitude of submission to your God ordained authority.” Mollie's lower lip trembled. She lowered her head and left the porch. Maude stood there, astonished. She was so shocked at how he had treated his daughter's attempt at kindness that she had forgotten to run away while she still could. “I'm very sorry to have upset you, Miss Marple.” Mr. Moody said. “Perhaps you could read the tracts to your 2 grand daughters?” “I'm not a girl!” Mason piped up. “I'm a boy!” Mr. Moody took a step back. His jaw dropped. “You tell them, Mason!” His twin nodded approvingly. “Make them accept you for who you are. You've got nothing to be ashamed of.” “Oh my.... you.... you let him wear... a girl's costume?” Mr. Moody asked Maude incredulously. “Who says it's a girl's costume?” Madison shot back. She was not afraid to look Mr. Moody in the eye. “Who says that girls can only wear this while boys can only wear that? It's stupid. My twin brother isn't doing anything wrong, so don't you dare tell him what he can wear, Mr!” I'm so proud of my grandbabies, thought Maude. Mr. Moody shook his head. “Child,” he said, “the bible tells us--” “The Bible tells us no such thing!” Maude shot back. “Miss Marple,” Mr. Moody said, switching tracks. “Do you think you're going to heaven when you die?” Maude blinked. “Well, yes.” “Have you ever told a lie?” “No,” said Maude. “I am always quite truthful.” Then, deciding she may as well try and make Mr. Moody's head explode, she went on. “In fact, everyone always tells me I'm too blunt. 'why yes Emily, that dress does make you look fat.' 'Your cookies taste like bricks Mrs. Jones, why, we gave one to the hamster and he used it to break the bars of his cage.' I'm just terrible at telling lies, Mr. Moody, even little ones people tell to spare their feelings.” Mr. Moody's face froze. He didn't seem to know what to say. Maude took advantage of his silence to lead the twins off the porch. “Have a nice night, Mr. Moody!” When they had reached the safety of the street, Mason spoke up. “That man isn't happy with himself.” “What makes you say that honey?” Asked Maude. “He doesn't think you're a good person. In school, we learned that means he doesn't think he's a good person either.” “I guess the bible was right when it said wisdom comes from the mouth of babes.” Maude said out loud. “Come on children, let's go to the next house. We'll definitely get something there. Oh, and give me those tracts Mr. Moody gave you. We'll use these to light tonight's Halloween bonfire.”
  16. Trynn

    The First Story

    This is the first Moody Parody I ever wrote. Taken from Summer With The Moodys. The Moody family is going door to door advertising the children's businesses. I thought it would be fun to take a look at the Moodys through the eyes of their neighbors. Please note that the Maxwells never wrote about a Miss Marple. That's supposed to be a joke, but I'm not sure I made it well. Oh well. Ding-dong! Alexa looked up from her textbook. That couldn't be cousin Jane already, she'd never get up this early. As long as whoever it is doesn't wake-- A loud moan came from the other room. --Grandma. Alexa thought, as the dog, Nox, began to bark incessantly. “It's ok grandma,” Alexa sighed, closing her paramedic's textbook and standing up. “I'll get it, you stay in bed.” Alexa went over to one of the windows and slowly pulled back the jet black curtains. Two adults and 4 children stood on the front porch, all dressed in red and khaki. Alexa let the curtain fall quickly. What the-- Alexa's grandma, still in her bathrobe and curlers, shuffled up beside Alexa, yawning sleepily. The dog whined at her ankles, no doubt wanting to go for a morning constitutional. “Who is it, honey?” “I don't know gran. These weird people dressed all alike in red khaki, and smiling. They're either 6 months early for Christmas carols, or Jehovah's Witness or...” Or random weird crazy people knocking on our door at way too early o'clock Alexa thought angrily. Thank you for waking my grandmother who is supposed to be resting. Can't this wait till noon? Idiots. Grandma Maude sighed. “I think they're the Moody family that lives down the street. They're a little strange.... anyway, we have to open the door now. I think the littlest one saw you.” Grandma Maude opened the door. “Hi boys,” she said pleasantly as possible for someone woken up too early. “What have you there?” She asked, pointing to the flyers. “We are handing out some flyers. We have a pet sitting business and my sister has a baking business.” The older looking boy said robotically. “Here you go, the flyer will explain more.” Grandma Maude took the flyer and held it up so she could read it. MOODY'S PAMPERED PETS Going on a trip and can't take your pet? Want your pet to have friendly care? We will watch them at our house. We can handle any type of pet (no snakes, please.) Affordable pricing. For more details, please call (931) 555-0392 and ask for Max. Well, thought grandma Maude, that does certainly have more details than what the young man just told me.... “Well,” she said out loud, “you certainly seem like.... an industrious pair of entrepreneurs.” The family stood on the doorstep, smiling and blinking. Grandma Maude laid the paper on the table by the door. “I will definitely keep your services in mind, should I need them.” She paused. “Which I'm quite sure I will,” she said, in a voice that indicated that she certainly would not. Alexa, having read the flyer over her grandmother's shoulder, had quickly grabbed the dog and relocated her to someplace the scary lookalike family couldn't see her. I don't know why, but I wouldn't trust them to look after a pet worm. Grandma better not go calling them when we go on vacation next week! Normally Alexa wouldn't worry about it, but her grandmother had just had back surgery and was on all kinds of medications that clouded her ability to think. Which is why I shouldn't leave her alone with them... what if she gives them money? Alexa slammed the door on the bathroom, causing the obnoxious puppy to hit her head trying to follow Alexa, who paid her no attention and hurried back to the door. “Thank you ma'am!” the older boy was saying, smiling even bigger than before, if that was possible. “You're welcome. By the way, my name is Marple. Miss Jane Marple.” “Miss Marple,” said Max with a straight face. “It is a pleasure to meet you.” The oldest boy turned to go, bumping into his younger brother, who had been standing too close. The younger boy fell off the porch. “Mitch!” Cried the father, “are you ok?” Oh please don't let anything be broken, thought Maude, I don't wanna deal with the paperwork. I'm so tired, I'm going to go lie down. Mitch picked himself up, wincing. “I'm alright.” “Next time,” said Mr. Moody, “be careful not to stand too close to your older brother.” “Yes father,” replied Mitch. As the weird family went off down the driveway, Maude closed the door and Alexa burst out laughing. “Miss Marple? Oh grandma! What were you thinking?” “I'm thinking that if I laugh any harder, I'm going to bust one of these stitches and wind up back in the hospital.” “Do you think they were keeping a straight face to be polite, or did they really not get the reference?” Grandma laughed. “I don't know Alexa, but one thing's for sure, I'm not trusting my little Nox puppy to a bunch of strangers, especially when children under 13 would be responsible.” She picked up the flyer and handed it to Alexa. “Here dear, you can use this to clean out the cat's litterbox for me. I'd do it myself, but--” “No grandma, you go back to bed.” Alexa took the flyer. “I'll go make sure this is put in a very safe place.”
  17. crazydaffodil

    Ultimate Song Parody?

    Perhaps the single greatest song parody/pun ever! It would be even better if it was performed by John Denver! Just sayin....
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