A Snowy Day Surprise

They were traipsing through the woods with their snowshoes on enjoying the first snow of the season and the way it had transformed the woods overnight. Some cardinals were sitting on a tree branch, their red color looking so bright and vivid against the white snow.

The guy nudged his friend’s arm, ” Look over there! Do you see that? What is it?”

His friend looked, and looked back at his friend with a puzzled expression. “It’s a rabbit. You know, those little animals that hop around and live in holes in the ground. Did you not have your morning coffee this morning Frank? Or maybe the question should be, what did you put in your coffee this morning?”

Frank shook his head, as he made a face. I didn’t mean over to your right, I meant your left. Look over there.”

George looked where Frank was pointing. “And its another rab…Wait a minute, are those horns on its head?”

“Exactly!” Frank said with a smug look on his face. So now should I ask what you drank this morning?”

They both watched the rabbit like creature sit still for a moment and then as if it sensed their presence it took off, soon disappearing over the hill.

Frank and George were quiet for a little and then George spoke up. “I have heard of jackalopes before, but I didn’t believe they were real! But being that you saw what I saw and I saw what you saw, well then it has to be real, right?”

“Definitely!” said Frank. “After all, its not like we are wandering in a hot desert thirsting for water and losing our minds seeing a mirage?”

” Yes, there can be no other explanation! Though people may think we have lost our marbles, but perhaps we really did just see the only living Jackalope!”

They started to get excited and Frank said, “We have to tell our boss about this, call the newspaper and let them know. We could be famous, George!”

They were walking and getting caught up in conversation about what their friends would think, and then George stopped walking and said, “Wait a minute, we have a problem. We don’t have a picture! If we start talking about it to others, we can’t prove anything, except giving people proof that we are nuts.”

“Why didn’t you take a picture?” asked Frank.

“Why? You ask me why?? Perhaps because you are the one with the camera around your neck, genius?” replied George, as he raised his eyebrows.

“Oh, yeah, guess I am.” Frank said with a sheepish look on his face.

“Well there is only one logical thing we can do now, we have to see if we can find the jackalope again. Lets retrace our steps in the direction back to where we saw him and take it from there.”

Back they went and started searching for the elusive jackalope. Their heart would start beating quickly when they would catch the sight of a little white tail hopping through the words, But they would look closer and sigh, when they saw that it was only a rabbit without horns.

They went to the left and to the right, but there was not a jackalope in sight.

Stopping for a rest they sat on a log and started to doze.

As they dozed a creature came up to them for it had smelled the snack that Frank and George had been eating. There were nuts and berries that had fallen on the snow. Oh they were his favorite treats and he quickly filled his tummy.

George started stirring as the creature ate the last berry. He better get going, or he would be late, Moonbeam Farm was still a little ways over the hill. He didn’t want to be late for their evening meeting and get Odessa’s feathers all ruffled. Away he hopped, while Frank and George continued to doze.

Oh, the things that you miss, that are sometimes right under your nose!

**Frank and George missed out on seeing Jaxon, the only living Jackalope, but you don’t have to miss out on learning all about him! If you aren’t sure about believing in Jackalopes, open up the pages of “The Odessa Chronicles” and take a look. You won’t be sorry that you did. You don’t have to go traipsing through the snow, you can read about him from the comfort of your chair, perhaps while you are looking out the window at the snow. If you happen to see 2 weary looking fellows walking or perhaps stumbling by now through the snow, don’t worry, its just Frank and George still searching.**




Bob and Bob (Part 2)

Here is a story to help you get your healthy dose of laughter for your day.  It is Part 2 of yesterday’s post about the seagulls “Bob and Bob”. If you missed Part 1 yesterday, here is the link.  Seagull Fun

If you have enjoyed this story, there are many more stories in “The Odessa Chronicles” book,  a collection of stories that will warm your heart and make you laugh. For more information you can click on the book cover in the right hand margin.


      Bob and Bob (Part 2)

The man-servant turned back and was now looking at the two gulls. This time, his approach was much smarter. “Bob One … step forward!” Bob One stepped forward. “Okay!” said the man-servant, “now I know who you both are, we need to talk.

Bob One looked at him. “So, you want to talk to Bob Three?”

The man-servant looked at him. “No! I want to talk to you two.”

“Yes,” said Bob One. “You want to talk to Bob Three!”

The man-servant was starting to get a little perturbed. “Look here, Bob One. If you are Bob One, and if he is Bob Two, then there is no Bob Three, or Bob Four.”

“Yes, there is!” said Bob One. “You can talk with me, Bob One. You can talk with him, Bob Two. If you want to talk to both of us, then you need Bob Three, or Bob Twelve depending on how you see it!”

The man-servant sighed. “Bob Twelve? Odessa, please help me out here!”

“Okay, Man-Servant,” said Odessa, “but it is really simple, at least from a gull’s perspective. If you want to talk with both Bob One and Bob Two, then one plus two equals three … hence, Bob Three. If you call out, ‘Bob Three’, they will both come and hear what you want to say. With your suggestion to name them Bob One and Bob Three, you can see why they immediately created Bob Four. It’s seagull logic.”

The man-servant thought about it for a moment, and then said “Bob Three!” and both gulls immediately gave him their attention. He turned once again to Odessa. “So where did Bob Twelve come from?”

Odessa sighed. “Gulls are like humans, in that they generally leave a lot to be desired, but in fairness, some are better educated than others. The less-educated ones will see Bob One and Bob Two as equaling Bob Twelve, with the number one in front of the number two!”

The man-servant was totally bewildered and started shaking his head. “Odessa,” he said, “would you please take over here, and explain to the Bobs where we are going, and answer any questions that they may have? Also let them know that they are welcome to stay on the boat for as long as they wish.”

Odessa smiled and nodded, while the man-servant turned to look out of the windows.

Although it was quite bright outside, there were still waves breaking over the bow and rushing past the windows. He could still hear the wind, but it did sound as if it had dropped in strength a little. “Well, guys,” he said, “can one of you wake Dewey up and introduce him to the Bobs? After that, perhaps get some food going around here? It was a long night, and if you’re anything like me, then you’re all really hungry.”

Jaxon and Odessa started opening up boxes and plastic containers, and soon everybody (including Dewey) was eating. The man-servant was eating a sardine sandwich, when a little piece of sardine fell to the floor.

“It’s mine!” said Bob One, diving to the floor.

“No, it’s not! It’s mine!” said Bob Two, also diving down, and bumping Bob One out of the way. Bob Two picked up the piece of fish, but Bob One flew past and took it from his beak.

“It’s mine!” he said.

“It’s mine!”

Bob Two flew up and then dropped down onto Bob One, who looked up to see what was happening, and dropped the piece of fish. Bob Two swooped across the floor and picked it up. “It’s mine! Told you it was mine!”

The man-servant, Odessa, Dewey, and Jaxon were watching all the activity, in amazement, as they continued scrapping over one small piece of fish.

The man-servant suddenly smiled. “I understand something now.” he said. “When I am at the coast, and watch the seagulls fighting over food, which seems to be all the time, what I used to hear as raucous gull noises, are really them all saying, ‘It’s mine, ‘No, it’s mine’, ‘Well, I saw it first’, ‘No, you didn’t’, ‘It’s mine now.’”

Just then, Bob Two dropped it again … and Dewey was right beneath him. Dewey caught it and swallowed it. “Here, gulls! Come to Dewey! Dewey has a surprise for you!”

The man-servant intervened. “No, Dewey,” he said, “these two are not for you to play with. They’re riding along with us until this storm moves on.”

The waves started to settle down as the day was coming to an end, and so the man-servant increased the Argo’s speed, pushing her quickly through the water throughout the whole night and into the following day. Bob and Bob wanted to leave the Argo and continue on their way by flying, so a door was opened and farewells offered, as they both flew out and up into the sky.

The man-servant turned to Odessa. “Who would have thought that we would meet Bob and Bob? In fact, who is going to believe the story about Bob and Bob?”

“Yes.” said Odessa. “You can talk to a Barn Owl, a cat, and a Jackalope, but who is going to believe a story about two seagulls? Humans really are quite strange. Anyway, strange human, you are looking really tired, and the steering wheel is still tied up, so why don’t you get some sleep? One of us will wake you up if anything changes up here.”

“Thank you Odessa. I think I will.”




Friday’s Super Short Stories with a Bonus!

Sometimes things don’t go as planned … sometimes they work out better!

Birthdays are a Blessing and should be celebrated no matter how old you get … just be careful with the candles!

Gifts aren’t necessary but its the thought behind them that makes them special!

Happy Friday everyone! I thought I would add a bonus story for today. It’s a longer story but I thought it would be extra appropriate today.

The following excerpt is from a story in “The Odessa Chronicles” that Colin had shared on his blog last month. It is called “The Birthday Surprise” 

Aren’t birthdays special! In this story it was the man-servant’s birthday and Odessa, Dewey and Jaxon wanted to make it special for him, for that’s what friends do for each other right.  They wanted to send him on a vacation and after thinking about how they could manage that Odessa came up with an idea! Enjoy a peek into the story.

The Birthday Surprise

Odessa was jumping up and down. “It’s easy!” she said. “I’ve been flying over the nearby towns, and just recently, they’ve been releasing lots of balloons for some reason.”

Dewey looked at her in disbelief. “What do balloons have to do with the man-servant going on vacation?”

Odessa was still jumping up and down. “Look, Dewey, you’re a cat, so you don’t understand things like air currents, thermals, air travel, gravity, and all that stuff, but I do. We need to get a lot of those balloons, and we’ll soon have the man-servant on his way! Simple! What could possibly go wrong?”

The towns were too far away for Dewey and Jaxon, so they cleared a space in the barn near the roof, as Odessa instructed, and waited. It wasn’t long before they heard the familiar whoosh-whoosh and Odessa arrived with two balloons. Dewey and Jaxon watched in amazement as Odessa let go of them, and they rose gracefully up into the roof of the barn. By the end of that day, all three of them looked in awe at all the balloons that were up in the roof.

Dewey suddenly turned to Odessa. “That’s all very pretty, but how are they going to help us?”

Odessa gave a little grunt of frustration “I wish you were a Barn Owl. Talking to you would be so much easier. Look at those balloons. Don’t they give you any ideas? Have you no imagination?”

Jaxon then started hopping around excitedly. “I know!” he said. “I know! I know how it’s going to work!”

Odessa looked at him. “Good for you, Jaxon. Now, would you mind explaining it to this cat?”

Jaxon looked straight at Dewey. “Now concentrate, Dewey. Odessa brought all those balloons from the town, right?” Dewey nodded. “They don’t belong to us, right? Like, Odessa stole them, right?” Dewey nodded. “Well then, once we tell the man-servant what happened, he will want to take them all back to that town to return them. He can then have a vacation. Brilliant!”

The barn went very quiet as Dewey tried to make sense of what he had just heard. Meanwhile, Odessa had walked away, shaking her head and muttering something about being surrounded by idiots.

A few moments later, Odessa walked back to them. “Listen up you two! You may have no clue about much of anything, but you do have to understand what we are going to do here. This is my plan. We take all those strings hanging down from the balloons and tie them together. Then we all pull hard to bring the balloons down here, where we tie them to something really heavy … say that old tractor in the corner. Then we invite the man-servant over. We give him the balloon strings, cut the ties to the tractor, and then voila! Man-Servant will be able to fly with the balloons, and go wherever he wants to go. He’ll have a lovely adventure-filled vacation!”

Dewey had a big smile on his face, but Jaxon was looking serious. “I have one small question.”

“Okay.” said Odessa. “What part of my plan are you not understanding, Jaxon?”

“Well,” said Jaxon, “when we give him the balloons, and cut the ties on the tractor, the man-servant will fly upwards with the balloons, right?”

“Exactly!” said Odessa. “Now, if only Dewey could grasp that!”

But Jaxon hadn’t finished. “Odessa,” he said, “when the man-servant flies upwards, he’s going to hit the roof of this barn. How does he get himself out through the open door?”

Odessa look stunned for a moment. “Ah … mmm … well … I see you spotted my deliberate mistake, Jaxon. Congratulations! Of course, we need to get the balloons outside the barn before we give them to the man-servant.”

Jaxon was still not happy with Odessa’s plan. “Odessa,” he said again, “won’t the balloons fly away in whatever direction the wind is blowing?”

Odessa looked at him. “Well … yes, of course.”

“Well then,” continued Jaxon, “how will he know where he is going for his vacation, and how will he get back here?”

“Well,” said Odessa, “that’s a minor detail, which I shall have to work on. Give me a few minutes, but in the meantime, let’s get all those balloons tied to the old tractor.”

Are you curious?  What do you think may happen? Would love to hear your thoughts about the story.  If you would like to know what happens in this story and in many others just click on the image of “The Odessa Chronicles” in the column on the right.




A High Flying Adventure!

Dewey is your typical cat as in the fact that he likes to do his own thing, no matter what you may say. He will listen to you when you tell him his food is ready, but he may not always listen when you try to caution him about some things!

“The Odessa Chronicles” is filled with stories of the crazy adventures that Dewey and his friends get involved in.  Today I would like to share an excerpt from “The Odessa Chronicles”,  that Colin had shared on his blog last month. It is about a high flying adventure that Dewey goes on.  When you have a Jackalope that can work magic, you never know what surprises may be in store! Enjoy!


Background: Jaxon had worked some magic which had enabled Dewey to fly, but how long would the magic last?. Dewey, being a typical cat, did not listen to any of the instructions from Jaxon and the man-servant, and flew away and out  of sight. Odessa was asleep in the barn on her roof beam when the man-servant woke her up …

** ***** **

When the man-servant and Jaxon realized that Dewey could soon be crashing into the ground, they decided to wake up Odessa. They both went into the barn and stood beneath her roof beam. “Odessa!” called the man-servant. “Odessa! Wake up!”

Odessa opened one eye and looked down at him. “What on earth is your problem?” she said. “I have been out all night, and this is my sleep time. Have you no respect for others?”

Jaxon then explained the magic that had enabled Dewey to fly. Odessa looked at him in disbelief. “You actually thought it would be a good idea to give a cat wings? What were you thinking? I guess that was the problem, as you were obviously not thinking!” Odessa then looked at the man-servant. “I guess you agreed to this insanity?”

The man-servant was feeling a little embarrassed. “Yes,” he said. “I thought it would be kind of interesting to see how Dewey got on with flying.”

Odessa paced up and down her roof beam, muttering something under her breath about being surrounded by idiots. She suddenly stopped and looked down at both of them. “Incredible!” she said. “We have a Jackalope with too much magic available to him, and a human who does not think things through too well! Incredible!”

The man-servant looked back up at Odessa. “We need your help, Odessa.”

“Yes, I can well imagine that you do, being as I am the only one here who can also fly! Don’t tell me … Dewey flew off and you have no idea where he is. Am I right?”

“You are quite right, Odessa,” said the man-servant.

“Of course, I am!” said Odessa. “I am a Barn Owl! You are a human, and Dewey’s a cat! Who needs to know anything else? Giving him the ability to fly was doomed from the moment you guys dreamed up the idea!”

The man-servant and Jaxon both apologized for waking up Odessa, and she slowly settled down. “I suppose you want me to find him, right?”

“Yes, please,” said the man-servant. “He took off over the fields in the general direction of the Big Water.”

Odessa suddenly looked very serious. “You guys do understand that if he tries to fly over the Big Water, he is not likely to be coming back. He is not designed for very efficient flying, and I doubt if he would get even halfway across. Anyway, I shall fly as high as I can, which should give me the best chance of seeing him. I cannot see it being that difficult to spot a flying cat.

** ***** **

What happens to Dewey?? The answer is just a click away. If you click on the image of “The Odessa Chronicles” over on the right margin  it will take you directly to the Amazon website, where you can order your own copy and find out the rest of the story.  You can also  travel through many other adventures with our friends as you let the pages take you to the most wonderful farm of all, Moonbeam Farm. The farm where friendship, laughter and adventures abound!

Who is Jaxon?

Happy Monday everyone! Did you happen to look out your window this morning and see a Jackalope? You never know where Jaxon may show up!

Colin, from https://meandray.com/  and I have collaborated together on a Children’s book of stories for all ages and it has been a wonderful feeling knowing that it has finally been  released! “The Odessa Chronicles”, is now available through Amazon and the Friesen Press online bookstore, as well as all other online book retailers.

The stories consist of crazy, fun adventures that involve a barn owl named Odessa, a cat named Dewey, a jackalope named Jaxon and the very patient “man-servant”, who tries to keep his sanity in dealing with everyone. They all live together on Moonbeam Farm, but the story starts before that.

Colin shared the story about Jaxon on his blog and I thought I would give my readers a peek into “The Odessa Chronicles” as well. I know we have some mutual followers, so I apologize for a repeat. Hopefully you can still enjoy the story a second time around.

This is Part 1 of the story, Part 2 will be posted on Wednesday. May it bring you SMILES!


Once upon a time, many years ago, and while the Creator was populating the earth with creatures, there was so much work to be done that an apprentice was eventually trained. Creating creatures was very skillful work and, under the direction of the Creator, he gained a lot of experience and eventually became very good at it.

The apprentice decided that, late one night, he would make a creature for himself. He knew this would have to be a secret, as the Creator often made it quite clear that all potential creatures must be pre-approved, and then only created under direct supervision.

He wanted to combine the agility and jumping abilities of a jack rabbit, with the tenacity and weaponry of an antelope. The unfortunate result was a creature with limited agility because of its horns, and a level of tenacity that would be scorned by other animals because of its small size. The apprentice broke the Creator’s first rule, which was that all creatures had to have sufficient skills to ensure their survival. He immediately realized that his creature (he called a Jackalope) would not survive very long in this new world. Much as he wanted to keep his creation a secret, he did eventually decide to tell the Creator what he had done, as he really hoped that his Jackalope could be saved.

As can be imagined, the Creator was very disappointed that the apprentice had made such a selfish decision to make himself a creature, and posed two questions: “What right do you think you have to create life without understanding all that is involved? What right do you think you have to create this poor creature, who cannot possibly survive in this environment?”

The apprentice was very ashamed of what he had done. He had wanted a creature for himself, but had not considered the possible problems that might come with not knowing all that was necessary. He now looked at the poor little Jackalope and cried, because he saw no future for it. The Creator saw that the apprentice was punishing himself sufficiently, and was pretty certain that he would not do it again, and so he rested his hand on the apprentice’s shoulder and said, “Your Jackalope will live. I have a plan. You can go home now, while I see what I can do here.”

More Snow Fun! (Part 3…A Snowy Day)

Caution: When writing a fictional story, beware!  The characters become real and wrap themselves around your heart!

Warning: The more stories you read about our Moonbeam gang may have you seeing “Odessa” in every Owl that you see, “Dewey” in every cat that you see and “Jaxon”, well…are you sure Jackalopes aren’t real??

I hope all of you have been enjoying seeing a peak into “The Odessa Chronicles” book. Does it make you want to hop in a car and go visit Moonbeam Farm? That may be a little tricky, but you can put your feet up and sit back as our friends learn a little lesson and continue to enjoy some Winter Wonderland Fun! If you missed reading Part 2 here is the link for you.  The Plan…(A Snowy Day Adventure..Part 2)

More Snow Fun!

“Up here,” she said. The man-servant looked up and saw her face peering over the eaves trough. “I think that we’re all even now.” she said.

The man-servant had to laugh, as he realized that Odessa must have carried all the remaining snowballs up onto the roof in order to get even with them. “Okay, Odessa,” he said, “we’re even. Let’s dig out Jaxon and Dewey, and then we can all go back into the farmhouse.

Once they were all inside, Jaxon looked at Odessa. “What you did was not very nice. I was almost buried in snow.”

Dewey added, “Yes … I agree with Jaxon. You could have hurt us.”

Odessa looked at them both. “Possibly,” she said, “but unlikely with those snowballs. You two, however, left me in an igloo where I could not get out. If a cat or some other bird predator had come in, I would not be here now.”

The man-servant was listening to the conversation. “I think Odessa is making a very good point for all of us to think about. While it is fun to play jokes on each other, we must always think them through carefully to ensure that nobody could possibly get hurt.”

Odessa was smiling. “Man-Servant,” she said, “that’s the most sense you’ve made all day today, but of course, you were paraphrasing me, so I should not be surprised.”

Jaxon looked up at the man-servant. “What’s parrot phrasing?”

The man-servant was smiling. “Oh, that’s something barn owls do when they have nothing useful to say, but want to talk anyway.”

While the conversation was going on, Dewey had wandered over to the door. “It will be dark soon,” he said. “Let’s all go outside and make a humongous snowman.”

They were soon all outside rolling up large balls of snow, but the man-servant had the biggest one. “This is our snowman’s body.” he announced. Jaxon and Dewey had joined forces to roll a snowball for its head, while Odessa was flying around looking for two sticks that would be suitable for the snowman’s arms.

The man-servant lifted their snowball and placed it on the body, and Odessa pushed two large sticks into each side of the snowman. “He hasn’t got any hands.” said Jaxon, while munching on a carrot he brought from the farmhouse.

The man-servant smiled at Jaxon. “No, he hasn’t,” he said, “but that’s all right. It is difficult to make snow hands. Can you pass me a carrot for the snowman’s nose?”

Jaxon turned away with a smile on his face, and tried to cover up little bits of carrot, which were lying on the snowy ground. “Dewey!” said the man-servant. “I’ve never seen you eat a carrot, so would you please go into the farmhouse and get another one? Our poor snowman needs a nose, and it would seem that Jaxon has eaten the one we had planned on using.”

Dewey went off to get a carrot, while Jaxon was on a mission, looking for two of something for the snowman’s eyes. The man-servant found some stones, which he pushed into the snowman’s face in a curve. Dewey returned with a carrot which was pushed into the snowman’s face, for a nose. The snowman now had a smiling face. Jaxon soon returned with two round black stones, which they placed above the snowman’s nose. The man-servant looked at him. “Well, guys,” he said, “we have a good-looking snowman here now.”

“But he doesn’t have any hands!” said Jaxon.

Odessa stepped forward. “The man-servant has explained that our snowman has no hands because he does not know how to make them. Of course, him being human, we must forgive his shortcomings. You may also have noticed that our snowman has no feathers, fur, or clothes.”

Jaxon hopped over to Odessa. “Can you fix our snowman up, Odessa?”

“Of course!” said Odessa. “Let me think about it tonight, and we’ll see what tomorrow brings.”

The man-servant looked at her. “I would love to know how you are going to do this,” he said, “but I have to drive into town right now and pick up some supplies.” It was late when the man-servant returned. He saw that Dewey was sound asleep on his cushions, so he also went to bed.

When he woke up the next morning, he heard Jaxon shouting to him, “Come on outside, Man-Servant and see our snowman He looks a bit like you!”

The man-servant quickly got dressed and went outside. His mouth dropped open at what he saw. Their snowman was wearing winter gloves, a quilted jacket, and a Tilley hat, and they were all the man-servant’s.

Odessa suddenly appeared and landed next to Jaxon. “There you are, my friend. We have one happy snowman.”

Jaxon smiled at her. “You’re awesome! Where did you find those clothes?” Odessa suddenly took off as the man-servant approached. Jaxon looked at him. “Didn’t Odessa do a wonderful job of our snowman, Man-Servant.” he said. “She is so clever!”

The man-servant looked at Jaxon and saw how happy he was. “Yes, Jaxon,” he said, “she really is a clever and resourceful barn owl.” Dewey came ambling out of the farmhouse. “Cool snowman! There is an empty food bowl in the farmhouse.” He then turned and went back into the farmhouse kitchen.

The others followed Dewey and went inside the farmhouse, and sat around the fire, nibbling on snacks. Odessa arrived a few moments later and cautiously landed between Dewey and Jaxon, and across from the man-servant … so she could watch him.

Dewey suddenly said, “I am sorry Man-Servant, that the planned adventure you had for us yesterday didn’t work out, but the past two days have been fun. Sometimes you can have the best adventures in your own backyard. They don’t always need to be planned, and as long as you are surrounded by your best friends (and bowls of food), adventures are bound to happen. There is nothing more that you need.”

They all agreed that Dewey was right, at least about friends. Odessa turned to him. “That was quite profound, Dewey. There’s hope for cats yet.”

They spent the rest of the day, and well into the night, talking about their past adventures, which was unfortunate, because they did not see the snowman with the man-servant’s special hat, gloves, and jacket, dancing in the moonlight!

Yes Virginia, There is a Jackalope!

Yes, there is such a thing as Jackalopes, though they are indeed very rare.   Around the age of 11, I was first introduced to Jackalopes.  My future Brother-in-law to be took me out “hunting” for them  in the mountains of Colorado.  Sadly we didn’t find any and I thought that my “dear” Brother-in-Law was pulling one over on me,  but many, many years later I learned the truth!

The reason I didn’t find any Jackalopes in Colorado was because there is only 1 Jackalope in the whole world!  1 very special Jackalope,  and he was seen living in the land of Canada.  The poor thing was living his life on the run.  He was trying to avoid 2 crazy hunters.

Fortunately the hunters had some great wisdom passed along to them in the form of a Mug.  A Mug that reminded them to “Save the Jackalope!”  Once they gained that knowledge,  they were quick to offer the Jackalope a nice, cozy home with one of them.  No longer did the Jackalope need to be on the run.  He was forever safe in his new home in Canada.

That very special Jackalope was the inspiration behind Jaxon, the very special Jackalope that lives at Moonbeam Farm.  One of the characters in “The Odessa Chronicles”.  The book of stories for children of all ages, by Colin and I.  The book that has been and continues to be an exciting journey as it goes through the publication process.

The above story is true, though perhaps embellished a little. I had been friends with Colin and his dear daughter Melanie for a short time, and had learned very quickly about their sharp wit. I figured I would see if perhaps they had ever heard of the famous Jackalopes that are here in the States.  I texted Melanie and asked if they had Jackalopes in Canada.  Her reply came back very fast, ” Yup, we BBQ them!”   That was just the beginning of me learning what kind of wit I was dealing with in having Melanie and Colin as friends of mine.

Yes, the mug did enlighten them that Jackalopes are not for BBQ’ing and yes,  there may be a plush Jackalope in one of their homes.  Oh and also one of them may have a Jackalope T-shirt.  Hey, I had to get the point across about saving them, not eating them, right!

Having that history is what made me think about adding a Jackalope to the story when I first started posting the short stories on my blog.  The story that had originally started with Dewey, the carefree, lazy, cunning cat.

How did the idea of the first story come to my mind?  Well that is another story! I will give you one clue,  when writing the first story I had no intention of it developing into more stories.  I had no idea how the stories would grow!  The first story was just a simple story written for a fun, simple reason.  It is truly surprising of how sometimes we really don’t know what lies around the corner!

jaxon-the-jackelope-moonbeam-farms-8x10-watercolor-on-140lb-saunders-hot-press Credit for the beautiful watercolor painting goes to Jodi Mckinney!  Thank you so much Jodi for your beautiful artwork!




Sweet Dreams

The Moon was shining down on the farm and all were asleep.  All except Odessa, that is, for she was out hunting for food.  While she hunted the others dreamed.

Dewey was dreaming about breakfast.  A much more pleasant dream than the one that he had the night before.  He had been dreaming  about his ride on “The Big Wheel”!  Oh that day would always be in his memory, the day when he surely thought that he would lose all of his 9 lives!  For a cat whose favorite things were eating and sleeping,  he sure did have a knack for getting himself into crazy situations!

What wonderful adventures he and his friends have had.  Yes, some were scary, but many of them were fun.  He had never  dreamed that his best friends would include  a magical Jackalope, and a witty Barn Owl, along with a crazy Man-servant.  But they did, and he wouldn’t trade them for anything.

Oh the fun adventures that they had.  Especially the ones where there was much laughter, usually due to playing a joke on the Man-servant.  Dewey smiled in his sleep as another memory flashed in his mind.   What was that, another idea was forming in his mind.

Jaxon was dreaming about his magic powers.  He wondered if the day would come when he could perfect his magic powers and do some bigger things.  He dreamed about the day that he tried to make Dewey fly.  That sure had turned out to be an interesting day!  You never knew what could happen when you lived on Moonbeam Farm.

Jaxon was so glad that he had found such great friends and a wonderful place to live.  His friends definitely kept life exciting!  He loved that he could use his magic powers to make his friends be able to communicate with each other.  Dewey and him still got many laughs whenever Odessa and the Man-servant would get into it with their words.  Hmm…that gave Jaxon an idea, and he smiled as he drifted back to sleep.

The Man-servant had been  dreaming about the day when they all found out that they were going to be in a book.  So exciting!  He knew that it was a lot of work to write a book, so he would keep patiently waiting.  He knew Carolyn and Colin were hard at work, and that progress was being made.

Patience  was no problem for him!  He needed large doses of it sometimes in dealing with Odessa, Dewey and Jaxon;  they all could be so tricky,  but what amazing friends they were!  He was sly as well and had his times of winning, where he managed to get one over on them.  He smiled to himself as he thought about the Rooftop incident.  There was also the time that the cupboard door which held Dewey’s  food  would not open for some mysterious reason.

He smiled at all the adventures that they have had.  His friends could definitely create a lot of mischief, but they could give him sweet surprises as well.  He still remembered the wonderful sight of all the different colored balloons that they had tied to his tractor.  It was fun releasing them into the sky and watching them fly.  Who knows where the wind would take them as they soared up high in the sky.  Who knows what the next adventure in store for them may be!

The many memories of past adventures kept coming.  The time that Odessa tried to tell him how to ride a bike and what the end result of that was!  The surprise of his Cardboard Cake  and the surprise of some ” thoughtful” gifts that Dewey and Jaxon had given him.  Their surprise when they got thrown into the pile of leaves!  The many times that Odessa’s sharp wit left him speechless and fumbling for words.

He shook his head,  what a life he had!  He wouldn’t trade it for anything,  but now he better get back to sleeping.  Dewey may be peacefully sleeping now,  but when he woke up  for breakfast the Man-servant needed to  be ready.  Dewey wasn’t as strong in the “Patience” department yet as the Man-servant was.

The stars were out and the night was still as once again all were asleep at Moonbeam Farm.



The Horse Race

The week-end is here and we are off to the races!


Well perhaps not literally! I am inviting all of you to the races.  You can come but still stay in the comfort of your own  home. Yes, you guessed right, we are headed to Moonbeam Farm. Another fun story from the book that Colin and I are working on.  I thought I would give all of you a little treat, since you answered trivia questions about our Moonbeam Farm gang on Thursday. If you missed seeing the answers, here is a link to my post yesterday. Friday’s Super Short Stories and more.

I have always enjoyed horses. They bring back such sweet memories.  I remember visiting my Aunt and Uncle when I was young, and they  had several horses in their barn. Seeing them and going for a ride was always the highlight of the visit. I can still smell the scent of the hay when I would walk into the barn and I remember the joy I had at feeding them. The fun memories of childhood. I think it was the Kentucky Derby that my Uncle would go to each year. Not to place bets at all, just to enjoy an exciting  race of beautiful horses. They really are magnificent creatures.

Get ready to enjoy an exciting race now! You can place bets in your mind of who is going to win, just try not to get the horses names confused. I can guarantee that you have never heard horses with names like these! The creativity with the  horses names did come from Colin,  need I say more.  I feel confident that following this horse race, will give your brain some exercise. Enjoy and may your horse win!

The Horse Race!

Every year, the town held a Founders Day celebration which always included a horse race around a local field. This year, it was being run in the field on the other side of the barn at Moonbeam Farm. The Man-Servant, while not a gambling man, would always watch the race and place friendly bets with Odessa, Jaxon and Dewey.

Dewey had dozed off after breakfast, and suddenly woke up to an empty farmhouse! It was unusual for the Man-Servant not to be around at this time, so he went over to the barn and saw Jaxon rearranging the straw on his bed. “Hey… Jaxon! Have you seen the Man-Servant?” he asked. “It is horse race day today.” said Jaxon. “He’s probably in the field trying to find a good place to watch the race!”

Dewey went out into the field and saw the Man-Servant sitting on a low branch of a large oak tree, and just above him was Odessa. “Hi guys!” said Dewey. ‘Isn’t it a bit early for the race?” The Man-Servant looked down to where Dewey was standing. “The race starts in thirty minutes, and Odessa and I wanted a good place to watch. Are we going to bet again this year?” They have bet in previous years with the winners being waited on for a day by the losers.

Jaxon just then arrived, so Odessa flew down and picked him up. She then placed him on the branch next to the Man-Servant, while Dewey just climbed up the tree trunk to where the others were now sitting. “Okay.” said the Man-Servant. “My bet is on Second Chance to win!”

Odessa just laughed. “Second Chance? Really? Don’t you remember him from last year? My pick is Third Strike!”

Dewey and Jaxon looked at each other and burst out laughing. Dewey turned to them both. “You’re kidding right? You honestly think that either Second Chance or Third Strike can win this race? Are you both totally out of touch with reality?” The Man-Servant smiled at Dewey. “We’ll soon see won’t we? Who are you picking?” Jaxon decided to get involved in the conversation. “I am going to pick the winner!” he said. “I am picking Seventh Heaven!” Dewey just looked at Jaxon and rolled his eyes. “I am in shock.” he said. “There are only six horses in this race and you guys are picking Third Strike, Second Chance and Seventh Heaven? Incredible! You guys will soon all be waiting on me for a whole day because my horse is First Choice! It’s going to be the winner!”

As the race was about to start, the Man-Servant got his binoculars out of their case. While Odessa could see across the field really clearly, the Man-Servant needed his binoculars. He could also then give Dewey and Jaxon a commentary when the horses were furthest away from them.

The race started from the far side of the field and, as in previous years, it consisted of four laps. As the horses came around the bend and down the straight which took them by the tree, it was First Choice who was leading! Dewey was jumping up and down on the branch. “Look guys! He is already out in front! Get ready to be my servants for a day!”

As the horses went around the curve and headed for the start/finish line area, the Man-Servant gave his commentary. “Okay guys. First is now second. Seventh first. Third and Second have just been passed by Knot Like Lee and Lou Zher is picking up the rear.

Dewey just looked at the Man-Servant. “What?” he said. “Do you mean that First Choice is now second, or that Second Chance is first?” “Hold on Dewey.” he said. “They’re just coming round the bend towards us again!” They all watched as the horses went thundering past their tree. Odessa was happy because Third Strike had managed to get into second place behind Seventh Heaven. They all watched intently as they went around the curve and headed down the straight to complete the second lap.

“Right!” said the Man-Servant. “As they start lap three, Third is still second but Second is now first!” Dewey looked at him again. ‘Do you mean that Third Strike is in second place, or that Second Chance is in third place, but then who is in first place?” The Man-Servant was too excited to answer!

“Finishing the third lap, Third is fourth, Second is first, First is third and Seventh is second!” said the Man-Servant. Dewey and Jaxon were exasperated as they did not understand what he was talking about.

“This is the final lap guys, and they’ll soon be near us again!” said the Man-Servant. Dewey and Jaxon were all standing on the branch now, and Jaxon was jumping around when he saw Seventh Heaven was in the lead, with Odessa’s Third Strike right behind it. Dewey was shouting “C’mon First Choice! Get moving!” The Man-Servant was also shouting at Second Chance to go faster as they went round the bend for the final time and headed for the finish line, all six horses were very close.

Dewey kicked the Man-Servants leg. “This is the end of the race Man-Servant so commentate clearly so we all know what is happening!” “Okay Dewey.” he said. “As they start the straight away down to the finish line, First is third. Second is first…”

At that moment, Dewey bit the Man-Servant’s leg. “Man-Servant! You really suck as a commentator. We have no idea what is happening out there!” The Man-Servant looked down at him. “The race is over Dewey! Lou Zher sprinted to first place with Knot Like Lee right behind him!”

Jaxon looked up at the Man-Servant. “So none of us won?” “No Jaxon.” said the Man-Servant. “Our horses came in 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th!

Odessa picked up Jaxon from the branch and placed him on the ground, where he was soon joined by the Man-Servant and Dewey. Odessa then flew up and on to the Man-Servant’s shoulder, and they all headed back to the farm.

“Tell me Man-Servant.” said Odessa. “Why did you pick Second Chance to win?” “Well,” said the Man-Servant, “I liked the name. I liked the idea that it was getting a second chance. Why did you pick Third Strike Odessa?” Odessa looked at him, and rolled her eyes. “My horse’s name was not Third Strike Odessa, but just Third Strike. I picked it because I like the attitude behind third strike. It’s like a polite threat that something was going to happen… as in three strikes… third strike… get it?”

Dewey had been listening. “I picked First Choice because… well… it’s First Choice!” Jaxon was smiling at all the comments. “You guys are so not clued in at all about horse racing are you! You don’t pick a horse based on its name. You study the form of the various horses, and then make an educated decision based on everything you learn. That way there is a very good chance that your horse will do well.”

The Man-Servant, Odessa and Dewey were thinking about what Jaxon had said, and then Dewey asked. “So why did you pick Seventh Heaven?” Jaxon didn’t answer, but suddenly started racing towards the open farm gate. The others chased after him, and caught him at the door to the farmhouse. He was laughing so much that, for a moment, they did not know what to say.

Then the Man-Servant took charge. “Okay Jaxon. Why did you pick Seventh Heaven?” “I told you!” said Jaxon. “You have to study their form, and Seventh Heaven looked very good.” The Man-Servant shook his head. “Oh… Jaxon! I know that is not true because I did check the horses and Seventh Heaven was running her first race!” Odessa looked at Jaxon. “Tut! Tut! Jaxon. You are not telling us the truth are you?”

“It was my magic.” said Jaxon. “I consulted my magic as I thought that it could make Seventh Heaven win, and you guys would have to spoil me for a day!” Dewey looked at him. “You mean you tried to cheat?” Jaxon turned around to face Dewey. “You would have cheated if you knew how!” “Well yes,” said Dewey, “but I’m a cat!”

The Man-Servant was shaking his head. “You two are so bad! It‘s not nice to cheat.” Odessa turned to look at him. “Really? Really? I saw you talking to one of the horse owners yesterday, and heard something about owing you a favor. What was that all about? Am I the only one here that has any integrity?”

Just at that moment, Florence and Hermione flew into the yard and landed near Odessa. “It didn’t work.” said Florence. “We tried to distract all the horses like you said, except Third Strike, but those horses were really focused on the race. Sorry! We’ve got to dash!”

As soon as Florence and Hermione had flown out of the yard, the four of them just looked at each other, and then burst out laughing at what they had all tried, and failed, to do!

Friday’s Super Short Stories and more

Simple answers aren’t always so simple!

Curiosity creates questions…questions lead to answers which create more curiosity, leading  to more questions….. it’s a never ending cycle!

Now I will help cure the curiosity of some, though Colin may have already cured some curiosity.  I told him to feel free to share his answers on yesterday’s post.

Yesterday I had posted some short trivia questions about the gang that lives at Moonbeam Farm. The 4 characters that can easily charm their way into your heart. I am sure some of you have been up during the night wondering what the right answers are. May your curiosity be cured as you read on!

1.What are 2 of Dewey’s favorite things to do? Eating and sleeping! His belly is never full and he can sleep anywhere. Remember he fell asleep in the boat! But as some of you mentioned there is something else that ranks right up there with those 2, and that is giving the Man-servant a hard time! He is dedicated to that for sure. 🙂

2.  Who can be sassy putting the others  in their place pretty quickly with their quick wit? Yes, all the characters can be a little sassy, but Odessa is the WINNER! She can make the Man-servant speechless!

3. Who thought they had a wonderful plan to make Dewey be able to fly, what could possibly go wrong? (answer found in Dewey’s Flight!)  Jaxon, and as to what went wrong…. well you will have to read the story. 🙂

4. Who can be sly and give back as good as he gets? The Man-servant! Some of you have mentioned before how you feel sorry for the Man-servant at times, there really is no need to. He is very good at paybacks. The The Big Wheel is just one example of how sly he can be!

5. Where do they all live? Moonbeam Farm, where there is a never a dull moment!

6. On a scale of 1 to 10, how good is Dewey at being patient? Now Poor Dewey did not rate very well with those who answered. One of you, who will go unnamed, (my Sassy Sis) gave Dewey a 0!!  If you would rate Dewey’s level of patience higher than a 2, please chime in! LOL!  I say a 4, and on a good day maybe even a 5. Then again, perhaps that is stretching it.

7. Who was stranded while being up high, deciding to just enjoy the view? The Man-Servant, thanks to Jaxon and Dewey! He didn’t even thank them for letting him rest awhile as he enjoyed the sights. 🙂

It was pointed out to me though that this question could actually have 2 answers. Before the Man-servant was stranded on the Big Wheel, Dewey and Jaxon were stranded on the roof! A plan of Dewey and Jaxon’s kind of backfired in that story. The Rooftop Incident 

8. This question is from a story further back, but I am sure there are some of you that remember. Who took a long journey, leaving behind their friends at the Farm? (making them curious, not to mention me, as I was sent the story part by part each day. Yes, Colin enjoys testing my curiosity!)  Odessa! If you have not read Colin’ s great story about her journey, I encourage you to. It is longer then most stories, but worth it. Here is a link to Part 1. Odessa’s Journey – Part 1

Thanks again for your love of these characters and the stories that Colin and I write. It is always fun to hear your responses about the stories.

Oh yes, there is one more question! How could I possibly forget it. It was the question about how Moonbeam Farm got its name. That one was a hard question, for apparently none of you remembered reading about it in any of the stories! Of course that could be due to the reason that the answer wasn’t in any of the stories! 🙂  A sly question, YES! Remember it was Colin who asked it. 🙂

It is a mystery, but I do like my sister’s answer. The Farm shines brightly as the Moonbeam casts its glow!