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Children's Stories
by Margo Fallis
The Crawford Family Neighborhood

Chapter One

My family lives on Oak Street. It is called that because there are a lot of oak trees. They are all very tall and in the fall they get acorns. Squirrels and chipmunks live in the oak trees, so do cardinals, blue jays and doves. My house is in the middle of the block. We have a big oak tree in our front garden. Dad has to paint our fence every year. It is white and goes from one side to the other. Sometimes I swing on the gate.

Chapter Two

We have a flower garden. I help Mum pull the weeds out. In the spring we have tulips, iris, and daffodils. In summer we have roses and in fall we have marigolds. The flowers make our garden pretty. I see bees and butterflies near the flowers. One day Ethan pulled all of Mumís flowers out and threw them on the grass. Mum was mad at first, but then she hugged Ethan and said it was all right.

Chapter Three

Mr. Pickle is our next-door neighbor. His real name is Mr. Peters, but he gets angry a lot, so we call him Mr. Pickle. He doesnít like Alec to ride his bike on his grass. Mr. Pickle stands outside every morning and waters his flowers with the hose. At night he sits on his porch swing and swats moths and midgies. He doesnít smile very often. Mr. Pickle doesnít have a fence in his front garden but I know he wishes he did.

Chapter Four

Mr. and Mrs. Butler are our other next-door neighbors. They are gone all the time. Mum says they work too much. Sometimes I see two cars parked in their driveway. One is silver and the other is red, like my dadís. They donít have any flowers and Alec cuts their grass every Saturday with our lawn mower. He gets ten pounds for doing that. I asked if I could help, but he wouldnít let me. They donít have a fence either.

Chapter Five

At the end of Oak Street is a grocery store. Mum often takes Ethan and I for walks to pick up milk and bread. If I am a good girl, Mum will buy me a biscuit for a treat. On Saturday our whole family goes shopping. We have to have a cart to carry all our food in and each of us has to carry grocery bags into the house. Every Tuesday we go to the Farmerís Market to get fresh fruits and vegetables. Mum picks up melons and smells them. She always buys apples because she knows I like them. I donít like onions, but Mum always gets some.

Chapter Six

There is a fire station across from the grocery store with a big, red fire engine. It must get dirty a lot because the firemen wash it nearly every day with a big hose. If there is a fire in the neighborhood, the firemen turn on the sirens and honk loud. The fire engine goes down the street with lights flashing and a fireman always stands on a long ladder. Alec wants to be a fireman when he grows up. I hope he likes to wash fire-trucks.

Chapter Seven

We have to go three blocks to get to the Post Office. Dad takes Alec with him when he goes to buy stamps. Alec always comes home with a new one for his collection. When Mum wants to post packages, she sends them with Dad. It is always busy there. The postman drives past our house and leaves letters in our postbox. Sometimes he waves at me and other times he drives by. We also have a school, a library, a hospital, a park, a police station, and a chemist in our neighborhood.

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