2021 Mix ‘n’ Match Mini Writing Challenge – Week #4

Good Monday Morning, Everyone!

I know it’s Memorial Day and many of you are busy with family celebrations, parades, and honoring those who have done so much for all of us.

But in case you also have the day off and a little free time. . .

. . .let’s have some Mix ‘n’ Match fun because it’s time for Week #4!

Mix ‘n’ Match Mini is a 7 week writing challenge for anyone who needs a little boost, a little inspiration, or a little encouragement to get writing. . . or maybe just a little fun!

You get to write your own story, enjoy and be entertained by everyone else’s stories, and get yourself in the running for some awesome prizes (please see the end of the blog post for a list of all the prize goodies which continues to grow!)

To be eligible for the prize drawing you must enter all 7 weeks.

For a full description of the challenge, to read the Week #1 entries, or to add your Week #1 entry, please go HERE (Week #1)

To read the Week #2 entries or add your Week #2 entry, please go HERE (Week #2)

To read the Week #3 entries or add your Week #3 entry, please go HERE (Week #3)

Mix ‘n’ Match Mini Writing Prompt #4 for Week of May 31:

So far we’ve played with character needs/goals, writing a cumulative story, and a picture prompt with random words and a secret!  This week we’re going to have some musical fun with themes! 😊

Choose a song from Column A, a theme from Column B, and an important item from Column C (optional.)  Write a 100 word story for kids where your version of the song tells a story that shows your chosen theme (including your important item if you wish!) You may use the original song opening if you like, but you are not required to (just make it obvious in your writing and/or identify which song you’re using along with your title and word count), and if rhyming isn’t your thing you can write in prose as long as it’s still clear which song you’re working with.  You may add or subtract characters (e.g. Bob and Joe rowed their boat gently down the stream), change the destination (e.g. Row, row, row your boat up the mountainside), change the type of action (e.g. Row, row, row your boat wildly down the stream) etc… Anything you like!  Have fun with it! (For examples in kidlit, see Iza Trapani’s extended nursery rhyme songs.)

Column A – SongColumn B – ThemeColumn C – Important Item (optional)
Row, Row, Row Your BoatIt’s important to try new thingsNecklace
The Itsy Bitsy (Eensie Weensie) SpiderEven when you’re bad, you’re still lovedTeddy bear
Twinkle, Twinkle Little StarIt’s important to stay true to yourselfBlackberries
Where, Oh Where Has My Little Dog Gone?Just because it looks good doesn’t mean it isPink Blankie
The Bear Went Over The MountainIf you work together you can solve a problemStory book
Here We Go Round The Mulberry BushYou don’t have to be big to stand up for yourselfMap
It’s Raining, It’s PouringFriends should always stick togetherTractor
Jack And JillBelieve in yourself and you can achieve your dreamsMoon
Rock-A-Bye BabyIf you don’t succeed the first time, try againDaisy

Post your story in the comment section below! (If for some reason you have trouble posting, you may use the contact form to email your entry to me and I’ll post it for you.)

  • Stories can rhyme or not – totally up to you!
  • You can go under or over 100 words if you want to – also totally up to you! – 100 is a guideline
  • If you’re deeply inspired by a theme that isn’t included you’re welcome to use it, just please say what it is at the top of your entry – the purpose here is inspiration and to get you writing!
  • For simplicity’s sake (and to aid skimming readers who might be interested in a particular thing) please say which song, theme (and important item if you choose to use one) you’re using at the top of your entry along with your name, word count, and title if you have one.

I am SO looking forward to seeing what you guys come up with!  You continue to knock my socks off with your creativity every week!!!

Now come join the fun! Get some writing done! Encourage your kids (or students) to give it a try! Or just have a good time together reading what other folks have written!

Ready, set, WRITE! 😊

(And remember, for full details on the 7 week challenge you can check HERE)

Check out the Week #4 stories!

It’s Raining! It’s Pouring! – Leslie Degnan

Dreams Inside! – Robin Currie

Jack And Jill’s New Adventure – Jen Subra

Untitled – Lauri Meyers

Charlie’s Search – Rose Cappelli

Rock A Bye Daisy – Laura Bower

Arachnid At Your Service – Jill Lambert

The Itsy Bitsy Spider And The Moon – Erika Romero

About Our Friends Who Tried To Row A Boat (Perhaps Under A Full Moon?) – Erin Cleary

Untitled – Lauren Scott

Believe In All You Imagine – Sally Yorke-Viney

The Itsy Bitsy Puppy – Marty Findley

All That Glitters Is Not Gold – Elizabeth Meyer zu Heringdorf

Spunky Little Teddy – Joyce Uglow

Flap Flap Flap Those Wings – Marty Bellis

Dress Dress Dress For Rain – Amy Leskowski

Mark And Grace – Colleen Murphy

I Love Shopping With My Mom – Sara Kruger

Oh Where, Oh Where Has My Pet Spider Gone – Aly Kenna

Where, Oh Where Has My Story Book Gone – Ashley Sierra

Ninja, Ninja, Little Sneak – Bevin Rolfs Spencer

Jack And Jill Revisit Their Hill – Ashley B. Pedigo

Jo And Flo – Christine Alemshah

Little Lilly’s Blunder – Elenore Byrne

Ride, Ride, Ride My Bike – Sue Lancaster

Friends For Life – Deb Sullivan

Fireflies – Lyn Jekowsky

The Rescue – Marta Cutler

Bear’s Fresh Start – Allison Strick

Rock A Bye Zombie – Susan Summers

Rainy Day Problem…Solvers – Susan Schipper

To Grandmother’s House We Go – Jeannette Suhr

It’s Raining, It’s Pouring – Dianne Irving

Tinkle, Tinkle, Potty Stress! – Michelle S. Kennedy

Where, Oh Where Has My Little Dog Gone? – Isabel Cruz Rodriguez

Use Your Map – Padgy Soltis

The Daisy – Barbara Renner

Oopsy Daisy! – Marta Cutler

Yummy, Yummy, Little Pie – Nicole Loos Miller

The Bat Flew Over The Pumpkins – Sarah Meade

Read A Book – Dawn Young

Sun And Moon – Dawn Young

The Itsy Bitsy Scratchy Spider – Bru Benson

Wait For Me – Candace Kubinec

Untitled – Sarah Marhevsky

It’s Raining, It’s Pouring – Sarah Hawklyn

Don’t Row The Boat Please – Linda Schueler

How Much Is That Bicycle In The Window – Mia Geiger

The Itsy Bitsy Tadpoles– Hannah Roy LaGrone

Rock Star Baby Brother – Katie Schwartz

Albert Went Over The Mountain – Deb Buschman

The Itsy Bitsy Spider Is Bored – Brenna Jeanneret

The Just Right Story Book – JC Kelly


When it comes time for prizes, names of all those who complete the challenge will be drawn randomly and matched with prizes drawn randomly until we run out! 😊

Please join me in thanking these very generous authors and other writing professionals for contributing their books and writing expertise as prizes by visiting their websites and blogs, considering their books and services for gift purchases, rating and/or reviewing their books on GoodReads, Amazone, B&N, or anywhere else if you like them, suggesting them for school visits, and supporting them in any other way you can dream up! 😊

⭐️ Picture Book Critique from Penny Parker Klostermann, the lovely and talented author of THERE WAS AN OLD DRAGON WHO SWALLOWED A KNIGHT (Random House 2015) and A COOKED-UP FAIRY TALE (Random House 2017)

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is penny-parker-klostermann.jpg

⭐️ 30 Minute Q&A with Penny Klostermann

⭐️ Picture Book MS Critique OR Query Letter Critique (Winner’s Choice) from Jennifer Buchet, debut author of LITTLE MEDUSA’S HAIR DO-LEMMA (Clear Fork/Spork May 11, 2021)

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is jennifer-buchet.jpg

⭐️ Picture Book MS Critique from Jen Raudenbush, agented writer of picture books, middle grade, and poetry. (Represented by Natascha Morris of The Tobias Literary Agency)

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is jen-raudenbush.jpeg
Jen Raudenbush

⭐️ 30 minute Zoom chat about anything industry related (manuscript, query letter, best practices for querying) with Becky Scharnhorst, amazing author of MY SCHOOL STINKS (Philomel Books, July 6, 2021)

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is becky-scharnhorst-collage.jpeg

⭐️Picture Book Manuscript Critique with Audio Recording by author and poet Sarah Meade Sarah will do a written critique of your manuscript and include an audio recording of her first read-through of the manuscript. The audio recording is to help the author hear how the story flows and/or where a new reader may stumble when reading aloud.

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is screen-shot-2021-05-23-at-7.58.46-pm.png

⭐️ Webinar: How To Write Powerful First Pages Like A Pro by author and editor Alayne Kay Christian

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is alayne-kay-christian.jpg

⭐️ A copy of Mary Kole’s Writing Irresistible Kidlit: The Ultimate Guide to Crafting Fiction for Young Adult and Middle Grade Writers, donated by Nicole Loos Miller

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is writing-irresistible-kidlit.jpg

⭐️ A personalized signed copy of SASSAFRAS AND HER TEENY TINY TAIL (MacLaren-Cochrane Publishing 2021) by Candice Marley Conner

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is squarecover.jpg

⭐️ Making Picture Book Magic Self Study Class (any month)

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is email-header-final-susanna-hill.png

⭐️A copy of A FLOOD OF KINDNESS by Ellen Leventhal

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is a-flood-of-kindness.jpg

⭐️A copy of MAKING THEIR VOICES HEARD: The Inspiring Friendship of Ella Fitzgerald and Marilyn Monroe by Vivian Kirkfield

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is making-their-voices-heard.jpg

⭐️A copy of THERE WAS AN OLD DRAGON WHO SWALLOWED A KNIGHT by Penny Parker Klostermann

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is 2c5b9-dragon2bcover.jpg

⭐️A copy of SLOTH AND SQUIRREL IN A PICKLE by Cathy Ballou Mealey

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is sloth-cover.jpg

⭐️A copy of BINDU’S BINDIS by Supriya Kelkar

This image has an empty alt attribute; its file name is bindus-bindis.jpg

⭐️ Magnetic Poetry – Little Box of Happiness

Magnetic Poetry - Little Box of Happiness Kit - Words for Refrigerator - Write Poems and Letters on The Fridge - Made in The USA

287 thoughts on “2021 Mix ‘n’ Match Mini Writing Challenge – Week #4

  1. Susanna Leonard Hill says:


    Jack and Jill / Friendship / Moon
    44 words

    By Dawn Young

    Moon and sun went out for fun
    To catch a glimpse of star dust.
    Moon glowed down onto the town.
    Sun came glistening after
    Friends for life, no more strife.
    “Together we can conquer!”
    Shining bright or glowing dim,
    We can share and wander.

  2. readmybook2002 says:

    Words: 100
    Song: Itsy Bitsy Spider
    Theme: It’s important to try new things
    Important item: Secret Plant

    The Itsy Bitsy Scratchy Spider
    Bru Benson

    The Itsy Bitsy Spider went up the water spout…again! The rain came and washed him about. Now eight wet socks and shoes needed to be changed. The water helped Itsy’s legs from the itching and scratching. He never liked to get wet.
    “I’m not going up anymore,” Itsy said, “I’m going sideways to try something new.”
    Itsy flopped into a nearby pot with a green cactus-looking plant that oozed something sticky, gooey, and made his legs feel great. They didn’t itch anymore!
    “MMMM, Aloe Vera,” Itsy said, “I glad this time I didn’t go up, just sideways.”

  3. Candace says:

    Wait for Me
    by Candace Kubinec
    Row, Row, Row Your Boat
    If you work together you can solve a problem
    WC 120

    Lily rowed the little boat slowly downstream, past the other houseboats tied up on shore. Her grandma told her she was too small to take the boat all the way to the shops alone, but Lily wanted to do her part to help her family.
    “Hi, Lily. Do you want some help?”, called their neighbor Mr. Rose.
    Lily smiled and shook her head no.
    Her arms were getting tired when she passed her best friend’s houseboat. She worried that Grandma was right.
    “Wait for me!”, Lou called. “I’ll come with you.”

    Lily and Lou rowed the little boat together to the shops and back home again. They laughed and sang and a big task for a small girl became easier.

  4. Teacher on Hiatus says:

    Song: Here We Go Round the Mulberry Bush
    Theme: If you work together you can solve a problem
    WC: 104
    Author: Sarah Marhevsky

    Oh no! The frisbee’s on the roof;
    that’s my goof
    (though there’s no proof!).
    Oh woe, the frisbee’s on the roof.
    How will we get it down?

    I’ll throw a ball to knock it loose.
    Give me a boost!
    Oh, it’s no use.
    I’d hoped my ball would knock it loose.
    How will we get it down?

    You’ll toss your rope to hook it now.
    You got it – wow!
    You lost it. How?
    I’d hoped your toss would hook it now.
    How will we get it down?

    We’ll tie the ball onto the rope.
    Tossed up the slope.
    Our only hope!
    We tossed the ball attached to rope –
    that’s how we got it down!

  5. Grinny Butler says:

    Once again, this exercise was very challenging and almost got the best of me. I apologize how bad it is.

    It’s Raining, It’s Pouring
    By Sarah Hawklyn
    (Even when you’re bad, you’re still loved, Daisy)

    It’s raining; it’s pouring.
    We’re stuck in here, it’s boring!
    When Daisy said, “you poopoo head”,
    It got us both to warring.

    We’re fighting; we’re crying.
    When Mom came in, we’re lying.
    We told her it was going fine,
    And covered with some sighing.

    She’s angry; she pounded.
    Go to your rooms, you’re grounded.
    “Cause when you fight, you’ve got to stop!
    I truly am confounded.”

    Still raining and pouring.
    To Mom we are imploring.
    “Please let us out”, we both did shout.
    “Of you we are adoring.”

    We’re hugging, our mother.
    “Mom, I’ll be a better brother”
    “Love you both even when you’re bad.
    From this we’ll all recover”

  6. Linda Schueler says:

    Don’t Row the Boat, Please
    by Linda Schueler
    (Row, row, row your boat
    Friends should always stick together

    “Let’s sing, Bertie,” said Gertie.
    “Row, row, row your boat
    Gently down the stream…”
    “Gertie, stop! I don’t like that song. It makes me seasick.”
    Gertie frowned. “It’s just a song…”
    Bertie held his stomach. “Seasick.”
    “Ok, Bertie. What do you want to sing about?”
    Bertie smiled. “Tractors.”
    Bertie crossed his arms. “Tractors are fun.”
    Gertie scratched her head. She paced back and forth. She jumped up and down. “I’ve got it!”
    “Putt, putt, putt tractor
    Gently through the field
    Bumpity bumpity bumpity bumpity
    Life is full of corn.”
    Bertie grinned. “That song is corny. But I like it.” 

  7. Susanna Leonard Hill says:


    How Much is that Bicycle in the Window?
    By Mia Geiger
    93 words

    How much is that bicycle in the window?
    The one with the shiny new bell.
    How much is that bicycle in the window?
    That bike is so awesome and swell!

    How much is that bicycle in the window?
    I wish that it could be mine.
    How much is that bicycle in the window?
    That racer green color’s divine!

    How much is that bicycle in the window?
    The one that’s a two-wheeler bike.
    How much is that bicycle in the window?
    If only I rode more than a trike!

    • Katie Schwartz says:

      Very sweet, I think most of us at one time or another, saw a shiny new bike in the window, and wished it was ours! This sounds like the start of a PB to me! As I was reading (hope you don’t mind), another line popped into my head, (‘I wish I could trade in my trike’)! Great job with your rhymes!

  8. Hannah Roy LaGrone says:

    The Itsy Bitsy Tadpoles
    by Hannah Roy LaGrone
    68 words
    Itsy Bitsy Spider – Friends should always stick together – Moon

    The itsy bitsy tadpoles
    Hatched out their tiny eggs
    Swam through the river
    until they grew their legs
    Now little froglets,
    They will grow up soon
    And hop to the bank
    Beneath the summer moon

    The itsy bitsy froggies
    Now live upon the land
    Croaking a chorus
    As a froggy band
    One frog alone may
    make a quiet sound;
    Together, the army’s
    Loud song can shake the ground!

    • Katie Schwartz says:

      This is very cute, I can see them as swimming, with their teeny legs after they’ve hatched. And, of course as a LOUD chorus when they’re all together!
      Good job!

  9. Katie Schwartz says:

    Another challenge, and I’m just a bit behind! Thank you for all your optional entry rules, Susanna! Halfway through, and I think every week is more fun than the last!

    Katie Schwartz (wc-394)
    Where, oh where has my little dog gone?
    Theme: How to Take Care of Your Baby.

    Where, oh where has my blue tutu gone?
    Where, oh where can it be?
    I’ve worn it forever, let Ma wash it? NEVER!
    Where, oh where can it be?

    Where, oh where have my bright crayons gone?
    Where, oh where can they be?
    Red, purple, and teal – and I color with ZEAL!
    Where, oh where can they be?!

    Where, oh where have my kid scissors gone?
    Where, oh where can they be?
    I’ve cut my own hair, a bit here, a bunch there.
    Where, oh where can they be?!!

    Where, oh where has Ma’s make-up case gone?
    Where, oh where can it be?
    I don’t want to be Clara, I want to be Farrah!
    Where, oh where can it be?!!!

    Where, oh where is my Mama right now?
    We’ve been napping for HOURS and HOURS.
    She’s nowhere in sight, I am thinking she might
    be outside, prob’ly pruning her flowers.

    OH MY! I spy all my favorite things.
    They’re up SUPER high on the shelf!
    I’ll balance on blocks, and a box and some rocks.
    And get them all down by myself!

    Sweet baby brother, it’s time to wake up,
    I’ll make you as pretty as me!
    Look at my tutu! It stretches! It fits you!
    Soon a boo-ti-ful baby you’ll be!

    I’d cut your hair, but there isn’t much there.
    Your onesies! Chop off at the knees!
    So much fun clip-clip-clip. A bit more snip-snip-snip.
    And now you’re enjoying the breeze!

    Poor baby, you’re looking a little bit pale.
    Don’t fret, you’ll soon be camera ready.
    Red lipstick, black liner, OOPS – looks like a shiner!
    Li’l brother, no squirming, hold steady!

    All my crayons are here! Ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh-ooh!
    Bright purple and scarlet and teal.
    I’ll draw stripes, polka dots, here and there, leopard spots.
    Just look at you – rock-star appeal!

    Oh there you are Mama! I’ve been busy – yes!
    Baby woke but I stopped him from crying.
    Did I do this? Yes ma’am, I’m the reason he’s glam!
    By myself Mama, and I ain’t lying!

    Where, oh where have the footstools gone?
    And the chairs and the boxes and rocks?
    And Ma says she’ll never go out again, EVER,
    Til the doors and the cabinets have locks!

    And everything’s locked SUPER TIGHT . . .

    Up and down, back and forth, left and right!

    No temptations, no NOTHINGS in sight!

    It’s my sad plight – BOO HOO – nighty-night!

  10. Jill Lambert says:

    Wow! This is epic, Katie! I love the way you described all the tools of your MC’s glam trade and her determination to transform baby brother. I guess Mom learned her lesson! Fabulous!

  11. Deb Buschman (@DebBuschman) says:

    By Deb Buschman
    Word Count:179
    Song: The Bear Went Over The Mountain
    Lesson: It’s Important to try Something New
    Word: Map

    Albert went over the mountain.
    Albert went over the mountain.
    Albert went over the MOUN-TAAAIN.
    To see-
    “Hold on a minute. I am not. Repeat. Not going over any mountain. I’m staying right here,” said Albert Armadillo.
    But it says right here on the page that the armadillo leaves the burrow at one year old to go out on its own. So why not go over the mountain?
    “I like it here by my mama,” said Albert.
    “Albert the reader is right. You need to leave the burrow and go out on your own,” said Mama Armadillo.
    “What if there are bad things over the mountain?” said Albert.
    “When I was your age, I was scared too,” said Mama. “But I found going over the mountain was a grand adventure. Then the best thing happened. You.”
    “Will I see you again?” asked Albert.
    “Here’s a map back to me,” said Mama.
    “Okay reader let’s do this,” said Albert.
    Albert went over the mountain.
    Albert went over the mountain.
    Albert went over the MOUN-TAAAIN!
    To see what he could see.

    • Katie Schwartz says:

      This is so cute, love it! Love the line “I like it here by my Mama”, too sweet, and of course, very reasonable! Good job!

  12. brennajeanneret says:

    This one was hard and hurt my brain a little, haha!


    The itsy bitsy spider always climbed up the water spout. Every day. Over and over and over again. He was bored. He was uninspired. He was lonely.

    But today was different.

    He climbed up the water spout but almost fell asleep from boredom and fell onto a book. So, he climbed up the book. I was flat and wide and soft under his feet. He laid down and rolled and rolled…right into a worm!

    The worm showed the spider all the best pages to eat and holes to hide. The spider had such a great time he wanted to climb other things.

    He climbed up some blackberries. They were sweet and bouncy and delicious. He was full and satisfied and almost sat on a fly!

    The fly taught him the difference between the fruit and stem and ripe and sour berries. The spider wanted to climb more!

    He climbed up a map. It was thick and colorful and crisscrossed in shapes and lines. He was mesmerized and so focused he almost didn’t notice the grasshopper.

    “Hello,” said the grasshopper, “you must be new.”

    “Yes,” said the spider, “where am I?”

    “This is the city landfill. We’re here,” said the grasshopper pointing to a square on the map.

    “Is that a water spout,” asked spider?

    “Yes. It’s just over there.”

    “You mean all this, the book, the berries, and this map were right outside my spout all along?”

    “Yes, and there’s much, much more,” said the grasshopper, “let me show you”!

  13. writestuff99 says:

    The Just Right Story Book
    By JC Kelly

    (WC 94, OPTIONS: Itsy Bitsy/If at first you don’t succeed/story book)

    The library story book
    Went into my backpack.

    I took the book home,
    And I opened to page one.
    But the words were too big
    And I couldn’t sound them out.

    So the library
    Story book
    Went back into my backpack.

    Back to the library,
    I dropped it in the slot.
    I asked the librarian
    To help me find a book.

    We found a “just right” book,
    And it looked pretty cool.

    I brought home the story book,
    And told mom I had a surprise.
    I read her the new book

Leave a Reply to Michelle S. Kennedy (@MichelleSKenned) Cancel reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s