Miss Julie’s eighth grade home economics class was excited for the day’s activities. All month long, Miss Julie planned spooky dishes for her class to learn how to make. Yesterday, the class made zombie brain baked Alaska and the day before that they made saucy guts and meatballs.

As the students arrived for the class, each group set their assigned ingredients on the central table. Today’s selection included pumpkin, chocolate chips, chocolate syrup, and grapes.

“Settle down class,” Miss Julie said, emerging from the class pantry with an armful of additional ingredients.

Everyone hurried to their seats in their individual kitchens and grinned.

“Today,” Miss Julie began, “we will be making Frankenpie.”

The students looked at each other in confusion. Whispered voices asking others what Frankenpie was filled the air. Shrugging shoulders and even more confused looks turned to contorted noses and faces as Miss Julie placed very weird looking food items on the central table.

“That looks like an elephant’s trunk,” Susan whispered to Charles.

“I know that one’s a squid,” Albert said proudly.

The class laughed.

“Okay class. I want everyone to break into your groups, grab up to ten ingredients, and bake a small pie.”

Students hurriedly grabbed only the items they recognized and set to work. Pies in Miss Julie’s class only served two people, or one if your name happened to be Charles, so they never took long to cook. Miss Julie busied herself in the main kitchen with a pie of her own for the entire class to try.

Forty minutes later, each kitchen proudly set their pie on the central table and announced what kind of pie it was.

“Kitchen one is proud to present a pumpkin chocolate chip pie,” Jennifer said.

“Kitchen two went an extra mile and made a chocolate chip cookie pie,” Alex said.

“Yeah, well,” Adam said, “ours is better. Kitchen three made a fruit tart.”

“Very nice everyone,” Miss Julie said, “but you were all told to make a Frankenpie.”

“But…but, what even is a Frankenpie, Miss Julie,” Heather asked.

“Try some.” Miss Julie set down a beautifully decorated pie that smelled just like Halloween on the table as oohs and ahs filled the room. As students grabbed a fork and dug in, Miss Julie began listing off the ingredients. Hardly anyone was listening until…

“… a little dash of dog, and a licking of cat …”

“What did she say,” Alex asked Jennifer.

“Cat! Did she say cat,” Heather said to no one in particular.

“… a little bit of Fran, and a little bit of Ken, then you mix …”

“WHAT!” the class screamed.

Miss Julie stood by the central table laughing as her classroom emptied into the hall. Only the Edward remained in the room, grinning.

“Great Frankenpie, Miss Julie,” Edward said. “You must have gotten the recipe from my grandmother.”

Miss Julie laughed. “Why yes, yes I did Edward.”



Don’t Be Bored Around Halloween


Life for fourteen-year-old twins Greg and Joseph changed drastically a month ago when their father accepted a position as caretaker for a wealthy businessman who wanted someone to live on his private tropical island and take care of things. The boys were now homeschooled and only had each other for company. Sure, their parents were there, but no other kids. How were they supposed to enjoy Halloween if there were no little kids around to scare and steal their candy? Halloween was in just five days and the twins were already bored of the place. They wanted excitement.

“Dad, can we borrow a canoe today,” Joseph asked during breakfast.

He looked at his boys and took a deep breath. They were both expert swimmers, and he had not heard of any sharks in the area, but he still wasn’t sure. “Where would you go?”

“We want to go check out that small island over there,” Greg said, pointing out to the horizon.

Their dad looked out the window and took a sip of coffee. “Honey!”

“Yes, dear,” his wife called back.

“The boys want to take a canoe to the island we were looking at last night.”


“Mom…we’re bored,” Joseph yelled toward the staircase.

“Did Mr. Rourke say anything about the island?”

Their dad thought for a moment. “No.”

“Up to you then,” she yelled.

Greg and Joseph looked at their father and grinned.


With that, the boys were off out the kitchen and down to the beach hut where Mr. Rourke kept his boats.

As they paddled out into the ocean, they started talking about Halloween and some pranks they could play on their parents. The hours passed and as the boys got closer to the island, they discovered it was much larger than it looked from the house.

“Maybe we could make this our own island,” Greg said.

“Cool,” Joseph said. “Hey, look, what’s that?”

Greg leaned a little to the right to see a figure emerge from the large ferns that sat beyond the beach. They paddled slower, but the tide was taking them into the beach.

“Do they have people who celebrate Halloween year round,” Greg asked, staring at the group of people who joined the man wearing a feather headdress.

“Um…” Joseph watched as the sun gleamed off the bone necklaces and ear gauges. He gulped as their canoe was pushed further toward the beach. “Yeah.”




The Teddy Bear


It was a simple gift purchased in an old antique shop by a loving parent for their small child. A small stuffed bear with light tan fur and beautiful brown eyes. Eyes that seemed to smile with generations of children’s laughter. Its mouth was a simple collection of red stitching that made those who saw the stuffed bear smile. Everyone except children. They hear the words. They hear the stories. Stories of those long forgotten. Stories that are about to be retold.

For Annie by Edgar Allan Poe

This is one of my favorite poems by Poe (aside from The Raven). Since it is public domain, I thought I’d share it here. Enjoy!

For Annie

Thank Heaven! the crisis—
The danger is past,
And the lingering illness
Is over at last—
And the fever called “Living”
Is conquered at last.

Sadly, I know
I am shorn of my strength,
And no muscle I move
As I lie at full length—
But no matter!—I feel
I am better at length.

And I rest so composedly,
Now, in my bed,
That any beholder
Might fancy me dead—
Might start at beholding me,
Thinking me dead.

The moaning and groaning,
The sighing and sobbing,
Are quieted now,
With that horrible throbbing
At heart:—ah, that horrible,
Horrible throbbing!

The sickness—the nausea—
The pitiless pain—
Have ceased, with the fever
That maddened my brain—
With the fever called “Living”
That burned in my brain.

And oh! of all torture
That torture the worst
Has abated—the terrible
Torture of thirst
For the naphthaline river
Of Passion accurst:—
I have drunk of a water
That quenches all thirst:—

Of a water that flows,
With a lullaby sound,
From a spring but a very few
Feet under ground—
From a cavern not very far
Down under ground.

And ah! let it never
Be foolishly said
That my room it is gloomy
And narrow my bed;
For man never slept
In a different bed—
And, to sleep, you must slumber
In just such a bed.

My tantalized spirit
Here blandly reposes.
Forgetting, or never
Regretting its roses—
Its old agitations
Of myrtles and roses;

For now, while so quietly
Lying, it fancies
A holier odour
About it, of pansies—
A rosemary odour,
Commingled with pansies—
With rue and the beautiful
Puritan pansies.

And so it lies happily,
Bathing in many
A dream of the truth
And the beauty of Annie—
Drowned in a bath
Of the tresses of Annie.

She tenderly kissed me,
She fondly caressed,
And then I fell gently
To sleep on her breast
Deeply to sleep
From the heaven of her breast.

When the light was extinguished
She covered me warm,
And she prayed to the angels
To keep me from harm—
To the queen of the angels
To shield me from harm.

And I lie so composedly,
Now, in my bed,
(Knowing her love)
That you fancy me dead—
And I rest so contentedly,
Now, in my bed,
(With her love at my breast)
That you fancy me dead—
That you shudder to look at me,
Thinking me dead;—

But my heart it is brighter
Than all of the many
Stars in the sky,
For it sparkles with Annie—
It glows with the light
Of the love of my Annie—
With the thought of the light
Of the eyes of my Annie.