March 21st, 2016

This week, there was a theme for the stories submitted: everything had to do with family newsletters. I had a huge response on social media regarding the theme, but only had one story submitted; I’ll do it again, soon. In the meantime, I hope you enjoy these newsletter themed submissions from Colleen and me!


The Letter

removed at the request of the author



December 1st

By: Tony Wassom


Dear Friend/Family Member:

Hello! It’s hard to believe it’s been a whole year, but here we are right in the middle of the holiday season, again. So much has happened with us, since my last letter and I know you’re eager to hear every little detail.

Jill and I are doing well. We’re preparing to soon be empty-nesters, but we’re managing just fine. I’ve retired from my job at the water company—thirty years of going up and down the same hill, over and over again, transporting the wet stuff. I can’t complain too much about the job, though. It if weren’t for that place I would have never met Jill. It seems like yesterday she was taking me to the dentist to have my crown repaired after we both tumbled down that hill. Oh, the memories. I’m ready for retirement, though. There’s a little stream, nearby, and I’ve hinted to Jill how much a nice little row boat would be. I hope she takes the hint; nothing would be better than tossing out a line, cruising gently, merrily dreaming the days away.

I’m sure you probably read it in my blog, but our cat, Diddle, has become quite famous. She made it onto an audition tape of Peter’s, and while he was playing his violin, Diddle kept meowing louder and louder, almost like she was singing. The video made it onto YouTube where some home video nut, Elsie I think’s her name, was absolutely over the moon with excitement. She wrote us, telling about how her dog kept barking hysterically while she played it, so she wanted to buy it and put it on her site. We didn’t make too much money, but got enough to say goodbye to our old dishes and flatware and get new stuff.

Speaking of Peter, he didn’t make it into Juilliard. The poor boy was just devastated when he received the letter telling him his cat was more talented than he is. We’ve been very concerned about him since his rejection. He stays in his room, all day, but I’m pretty sure he has been leaving at night when we go to sleep. He seems to sleep a lot during the day, but I walked in on him, last week, shadowboxing in his room. Aside from the green leggings he was wearing, his form looked pretty good! I told him maybe he should consider a career in pugilism since it seemed more and more likely he’ll never, never land a job as a musician.

Our oldest, Cass, has moved back in with us temporarily. She and our granddaughter will be with us for a few months. It’s awful how Cass’s husband died from a spider bite while cleaning out the water spout. Itsy bitsy thing, but it was apparently very poisonous. It is nice, though, to have a baby in the house, again. I don’t miss the long nights when the little baby cries and cries, though. Mama has been reading To Kill a Mockingbird out loud to try and hush the crying, but it seems to not be working. I’m pretty sure the little one is teething since she has been clamping down on everything from Jill’s diamond ring to my old looking glass. Still, she is just the sweetest little baby in town.

Peter’s twin sister, Mary, has been doing very well in the FFA. Last fall, her lamb won the coveted Whitest Fleece award, earning Mary a trip to the state fair, next year! It gets a little inconvenient having the blasted sheep in the house, though. I mean, for the last few months, everywhere Mary went the lamb was sure to go, too. She even got in trouble because the lamb followed her to school, which is against the rules. Of course, if the little lamb keeps chewing up our stuff, she may find herself on the dinner table. Last week, she demolished Jill’s green and yellow basket and everything in it…including an old letter from me. One more incident like that and the lamb’s new name will be Gyro!

Well, I’m going to wrap it up and have my morning tea. I can hear the short, stout little teapot getting ready to shout at me, now. There’s so much more to tell you, but I think it’ll have to wait until next time. Jill, the kids, me, and all the animals here at the farm want to wish you and your family a wonderful holiday season and a great new year, too.


Love to all,

Jack McDonald


P.S. My brother, John, has been looking for work. It’s rather embarrassing, but he slept through the morning bells, one too many times, and was fired. He’s a bit of a ding dang dong, but if you know of any job openings, please let me know. Thanks!

Thanks for reading! Don't forget to send your submissions to