Our Minnesota Trip: Ikea

If you have never been to an Ikea, you need to.  It’s a vacation destination for us!




Michael had sooo much fun!  He could open every cupboard, look in every drawer, lay on every bed. . .


I just thought this was so cool!  There’s a mirror inside.


Spencer giving abakus lessons–just because he knows how. . . oh. . . everything works.  I still don’t know how to use those. 🙂


A fun bird pillow that Becca found! 😀


I think I found everything in the store that had leaves or flowers on it. #NatureGirl









I hadn’t been to Ikea for a long time.  It was much more fun than I remembered!  We ate lunch there, and it was sooo good!  We had free breakfast at our hotel, but it was just. . . okay.  So we went to breakfast at Ikea the last two mornings!

Happy Monday, dear readers!  Am I the only one who can’t wait to finish The Mushroom Feast tomorrow?!

The Mushroom Feast #12

Don’t miss Part 11 that I did yesterday evening.  Speaking of which, this is Part 12!  Only one more part to go!  (Can you believe that???)  Stay tuned for the happy ending!  And I’m planning on doing the “Behind the Scenes” post the following Thursday.  In the meantime, this is the one scientific part:


Feed the whole colony? Amelia flew slowly back towards her house with Jerry tucked under her arm; above the path from the tree-stump castle, over the Bluestone, down the little path she herself had made. Her mind was whirling. She hoped she could keep her composure before the King and Queen through this puzzled delirium.

Continue reading The Mushroom Feast #12

The Mushroom Feast #11

Sorry I’m late (again!) we’ve been really busy lately!  Becca’s Bright Lights group met for the last time yesterday!


Such sweet girls!  Her group has grown a lot since she started.  I’ve been so blessed to know all of these girls!

We were gone all morning and all evening in addition to BL, so I didn’t get this posted. . . and I was gone almost all day today too!  So anyway, here we are!  Enjoy the story–we only have two more left!


Amelia woke up feeling miserable. She found the leaf that she used as a cloak in cold weather, wrapped herself in it over her nightgown, and went outside. The walls of her house were dry by now, and she leaned against the warm mud-bricks and furrowed her brow at the breeze-tossed leaves above her. But she didn’t really need to think—she knew what was right and she must do it, no matter how hard—and she knew it. But she thought for a long time anyway; because it was hard, terribly hard.

Continue reading The Mushroom Feast #11

Our Minnesota Trip: Minnehaha Park


Visiting Minnehaha Park has to be one of my favorite parts of the trip!  It was so beautiful!  (Be prepared for lots of pictures! 🙂 )


Of course, I had to take a few random close-ups:









Wondering if this is the year the park was made???



There were lots of spider webs on the railings.  I don’t really know why I took this picture of them–it just looked photogenic somehow.


Down the stairs from the entrance to the park was this incredible waterfall.  I wish we could have gotten closer!  The pictures still turned out well though.






Anyone feeling pictured out yet?  It was just so beautiful I couldn’t help it!


Becca, Spencer, and I all climbed up this, and back down a little more to the left.  Crazy, I know, but fun!


From the top!  Can you see Michael down there?




I wasn’t the only photographer! 🙂


About this time I stopped taking pictures because I put my camera away and started wading!  We all got pretty wet, but it was super fun!

Minnehaha Park was absolutely beautiful!

The Mushroom Feast #10

It’s official: I have ZERO self-control.  Tuesday is just too far away.  It’s only a day late, right?  Okay, it did take me almost all day to get around to posting this, I know.  But when I started posting my first story, Into the Dragon’s Lair, I said this while I was explaining how often I woule be posting:

I will try consistently post every Tuesday (I think they’ll be 6 parts), but if I miss a day I’ll fudge and post it late (or early, if I see it coming).  I thought you guys would appreciate that more than my skipping a week for the sake of regularity. :-)

Once I remembered that, I knew I had a good excuse.  More than an excuse, it’s a good reason.  But I have a little news first. . .


. . . Today is Michael’s Adoption Day!


Exactly three years ago Little Brother and I officially became siblings–but really, he was my brother all along.  We were family even before the finalization, no matter what legalities were in place.  We were so blessed to be able to bring M right Home from the hospital!

Now, read away:


Amelia set Jerry on the ground and bent down beside the mushroom. She grasped the base of the stalk in both hands, snapped it off, and swung the fungus over her shoulder. It was taller than she was, but light as a feather. She carried it back to her house, tripping on an overeager-to-keep-up-with-her centipede. She brought it inside and laid it on the table.

Continue reading The Mushroom Feast #10


Hey, guys!  We just got back from a family vacation to Minnesota (pictures forthcoming).  It was super fun, but it’s still good to be home!

Unfortunately, my computer is being finicky today, and won’t let me get to my word processor, so I can’t post more of The Mushroom Feast.  If we can’t get things up and running today I’ll pick up again next Tuesday.

Sorry about the delay!

The Mushroom Feast #9

So, considering this is the longest story I’ve posted so far, I thought it deserved a “Behind the Scenes” post.  And I have a lot to say about!  I was planning on doing those in between the last and second-to-last parts; but as I want to be able to talk about the whole story without giving away the end, so stay tuned for a “Behind the Scenes” once the the story is done to hear more about how this story unraveled!


Amelia woke up and looked around her home in the dim sunlight that crept in between the shutters. She was lying on her bed, on top of the coverlet, completely dressed, with Jerry curled up on a fold of her pink rose-petal skirt—needless to say, unusual. Storms must scare her worse than she’d thought. Last night seemed like a dream.

Continue reading The Mushroom Feast #9

The Mushroom Feast #8

Can you believe we’re to part eight?  I can’t!

Spoiler alert: There are big happenings in the next part!  I’m so excited!  The title is going to make sense soon.


When Amelia had been twelve, only a year after her father had died of the bee-sting, her mother had followed. People said she died of sorrow. The little fairy went to live with an aunt and the little house her parents built had sat empty until Amelia turned fourteen, when she went back to live in it. She had lived there alone (except for Jerry) since then, and she knew how to handle thunderstorms.

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The Mushroom Feast #7

Hey, guys.

I’m back.  I’m sorry I didn’t get the “Mystery Quote” done yesterday.  I had no inspiration for what book to quote that morning, and then I just never got back to it.  I guess I’m running out of books.

Last week’s quote was from Ivanhoe by Sir Walter Scott, and the [she] is Rowena.  Spencer and Ellen got it right, and Spencer also guessed who [she] was.  Great job, guys–especially considering that neither of you have read the book!

And, like I said, I’m running out of inspiration on books, so I’m going to take a break from “Mystery Quote” for a while.  I’ll still have my story to keep me posting regularly.  I’m considering doing something weekly after I finish posting The Mushroom Feast, and before I start posting The Sacrifice, but I’m not sure I will.

Anyways, I’ll let you read! 🙂


Amelia stayed at the Hawthorns’ for nearly a week, because Cianna said the spider-bite should be washed and bandaged every day, and she couldn’t reach the spot on her neck very well herself. The dizziness went away in a few days, and the burns were long gone even by that time, so Amelia did her best to make herself useful while she stayed. She helped Cianna cook and clean their large tree-stump home. It seemed as big as a mansion to her, after her little one-room house; and she felt uncomfortably as if she were staying in a palace with a king and queen. She felt inferior, though neither of the Hawthorns would ever have tried to make her feel so.

Continue reading The Mushroom Feast #7