Sam always left a
mess after he was finished eating. He never put the lids back on
the mayonnaise. He never closed the top of the box of cereal and
he never put things back in the cupboard or refrigerator. Not once
had he picked up his dishes and put them in the sink. Sam's mom
scolded him every day, but he didn't listen. He'd finish eating
and then run off to play. Sam loved playing with his friends more
than he liked cleaning up after himself.
Saturday was Sam's
birthday. His mom was throwing a party for him. "Sam, I'll let you
have a birthday party only if you promise to clean up after
yourself for the rest of the week."
"All right, Mom. I
will. I promise." Sam kissed his mom and started working on
birthday party invitations.
He invited all of
his friends from school and from his neighborhood.
morning, Sam was so excited. He helped his mom blow up balloons
and decorate the house. He stared at his birthday cake and watched
as his mom put the ice cream in the freezer.
When his friends
arrived, they played games and had birthday cake and ice cream and
then opened presents. Jill gave Sam a box of donuts. Ben gave Sam
a dozen chocolate bars. Bill gave Sam ten brownies and two
chocolate eclairs. Sandra gave him a toy car. Jeff gave him a box
of toy soldiers and Andy gave him some marbles. He got a lot more
toys from his friends. After the party Sam played with his toys
and ate some of his brownies and donuts.
Nighttime came and
Sam started yawning. "Time for bed, Sam, but first you have to
clean up after yourself, like you promised." His mom pointed at
the kitchen. "You need to put the brownies away and the chocolate
eclairs in a bag and close the box of donuts."
Sam didn't want to
do anything. He was too tired. "All right, Mom." He went into the
kitchen and instead of doing as him mom asked, he ate another
brownie and went to bed without brushing his teeth. He left a mess
His mom went into
the kitchen later on. "I'm not cleaning this up. It's time Sam
learned a lesson." She left the mess out, just like Sam left it.
In the morning Sam
woke up. "I can't wait to eat some of my donuts for breakfast and
a few brownies and eclairs too." He ran into the kitchen. Sitting
on one of the donuts was a fat brown mouse. There were mice eating
the brownies and some eating the eclairs. "Go away, mice," Sam
said and shooed them all away.
His mom came into
the kitchen. "Sam! What happened?" She saw the mice running away.
"There were mice
all over my donuts and brownies and eclairs," Sam said. He sat in
the chair and sobbed. "Now I don't have any more left."
"That's right, Sam,
and why is that?"
"Because I didn't
clean up after myself like I promised. I'm sorry, Mom. From now on
I'll clean up every single time." Sam hugged his mom.
Sam put his dishes in the sink. He closed up the cereal box and
put the milk in the refrigerator. After lunch he put the lid on
the mayonnaise and put his dishes in the sink again. That night
his mom brought him another box of donuts. Sam was so excited. He
sat at the table and ate one. He was about to get up and run to
play with his toys, but stopped. "Oh yeah." He put the donuts back
in the box and closed the lid. The next day when he got up, the
donuts were still there. No mice had eaten them. Sam always
cleaned up his mess after that. He liked donuts too much!