2021 Mix ‘n’ Match Mini Writing Challenge Week #5

It’s a hot, hot Monday in June, so what better way to spend the day then on a cool porch, in a shady hammock, or in the air-conditioned library with an iced beverage, your writing implements, and the prompt for Mix ‘n’ Match Week #5?!

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)

To read the Week #4 entries or add your Week #4 entry, please go HERE (Week #4)

Mix ‘n’ Match Mini Writing Prompt #5 for Week of June 7:

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

Kids have a lot to learn about the world, and picture books can be education disguised as entertainment 😊. Think Z IS FOR MOOSE by Kelly Bingham, MOUSE PAINT by Ellen Stoll Walsh, and ROUND IS A TORTILLA by Roseanne Thong.

For this week’s challenge, choose a concept from Column A and a setting from Column B and write a 100 word concept story for kids in which you utilize the setting to show your concept.

Column A – ConceptColumn B – Setting
TimeCar Trip
Place/Location (in, on, above, under, around, through, etc.)Circus
EmotionsCity or Country
SeasonsAmusement Park or County Fair
  • 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 concept or a setting 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 concept and setting you’re using at the top of your entry along with your name, word count, and title if you have one.

Can’t wait to see what amazing, creative things you guys come up with this week! 

So 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 #5 stories!

F Is For Fish Farm – Candice Marley Conner

The Reason For Seasons (At The Beach) – Laura Bower

Go To The Beach And Find. . . – Erika Romero

Circus Countdown – Sue Lancaster

ABCs Of Abstract Art – Christine Alemshah

What Color Is Fall? – Jen Subra

Toucan Counts His Berries – Marty Findley

Weather Check – Dawn Young

The Colors In The Farm – Isabel Cruz Rodriguez

One Fine Bluebird – Rose Cappelli

Road Trip! – Erin Cleary

Wise Willie Wonders Where – Susan Schipper

On My First Easter Party – Ashley Sierra

Senses Dance At The Beach – Lyn Jekowsky

Roller Coaster – Barbara Renner

Alphabet Road Trip – Aly Kenna

A Trolley Full Of Feelings – Elenore Byrne

It’s Time For The State Fair – Joyce Uglow

They’re Coming! – Jill Lambert

The Colorful Car Trip – Deb Sullivan

Are We There Yet? – Marta Cutler

The Number Line – Colleen Owen Murphy

Five At The Fair – Bevin Rolfs Spencer

Are We There Yet? – Leslie Degnan

A Win At Walmart – Sara Kruger

Circus Opposites – Lauren Scott

Runaway Stroller – Allison Strick

Ghost Crabs At The Beach – Susan Summers

Ups And Downs – Jeannette Suhr

Sleepytime ABCs – Elizabeth Meyer zu Heringdorf

I’ll Grocery Shop For You – Bru Benson

Weather Or Not – Marta Cutler

At the Beach – Marty Bellis

Counting the Colors of Sunset // Contando los colores del atardecer – Hannah Roy LaGrone

Farm Time – Robin Currie

Halloween Alphabet – Sally Yorke-Viney

Alphabet Road Trip – Deb Buschman

At Grandma’s House – Sarah Meade

Not The Only One – Amy Leskowski

Beach Day – Katie Schwartz

At The Beach – Sarah Hawklyn

Monday Mornings – Padgy Soltis

Farm Life – Michelle S. Kennedy

Seasons Market – Linda Schueler

Untitled – Lauri Meyers

Roller Coaster – Nicole Loos Miller

Ten Little Sea Creatures – Mia Geiger

Head Down Under And Count To Ten – Dianne Irving

The Halloween Seasons – Brenna Jeanneret

“Is It Halloween Yet?” – Ashley B. Pedigo

I Simply Cannot – 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)

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⭐️ 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)

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⭐️ 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)

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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)

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⭐️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.

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

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⭐️ 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

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

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

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⭐️A copy of A FLOOD OF KINDNESS by Ellen Leventhal

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

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

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

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⭐️A copy of BINDU’S BINDIS by Supriya Kelkar

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⭐️ 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

378 thoughts on “2021 Mix ‘n’ Match Mini Writing Challenge Week #5

  1. candicemarleyconner says:

    F Is For Fish Farm!
    By Candice Marley Conner
    (Alphabet, farm, 100 words)

    A is for alligator, watching you from afar.
    B is for bass, large-mouth and striped.
    C is for catfish, with whiskery barbels.
    D is for dip net, to scoop silvery fish.
    E is for egg mass, we collect from the ponds.
    F is for farm, but for fish!
    G is for gills, how fish breathe underwater.
    H is for hatchery, where the baby fish grow.
    I is for iridescent, the color of scales.
    J is for jelly, that protects the koi eggs.
    K is for koi, that look like the sun.
    L is for lake, where fish like to live.

    (I stopped here because that’s 100 words, but I’m very proud of the fact that I came up with one for V: “V is for ventral, the fin underneath” ;))

  2. Laura Jensen Bower says:

    The Reason for Seasons (at the Beach)
    By Laura Bower
    (Concept: Seasons, Setting: Beach)
    91 words

    Many changes,
    seasons bring.
    Winter, Summer,
    Fall and Spring.

    Winter time.
    colder air.
    Breezy winds
    blow back hair.

    Stronger waves,
    coarser sand.
    Plants turn into
    dried-out strands.

    Spring arrives.
    Plants wake up.
    People stroll
    with their pup.

    Salty sprays,
    sweeter air.
    A quick dip?
    If you dare!

    Sun grows hotter.
    Summer’s here!
    Ice cream smiles

    Warmer water,
    mild breeze.
    Buckets filled.
    Sandy knees.

    Fall starts warm,
    fades to cool.
    Beaches swapped with
    “Back to school!”

    One last sunset
    on the pier.
    Promise made.
    “Until next year!”

  3. Erika says:

    Go to the Beach and Find…
    By Erika Romero

    Go to the beach and find…

    One red lifeguard shack.

    Two orange umbrellas.

    Three yellow chairs.

    Four green sandals.

    Five blue seashells.

    Six indigo coolers.

    Seven violet goggles.

    Eight rainbow towels.

    Go to the beach and find…

    …a colorful adventure waiting to begin!

  4. Sue Lancaster says:

    Circus Countdown
    (156 words / Concept: Numbers / Setting: Circus

    TEN tight-rope walkers strutting down the line,
    One wobbles over, then there were… nine.

    NINE strong ladies, heaving up a weight,
    One crashes downwards, then there were… eight.

    EIGHT white ponies, plumage sent from heaven,
    One bolts towards the door, then there were… seven.

    SEVEN crazy clown-folk, getting up to tricks,
    One slips on custard-pie, then there were… six.

    SIX men trapezing, feeling so alive,
    One swing is slowing down, then there were… five.

    FIVE bold acrobats, dancing ‘round the floor,
    One is getting weary, then there were… four.

    FOUR fire-jugglers, spinning skillfully,
    One baton hits the ground, then there were… three.

    THREE excited children, with a ringside view,
    One has fallen fast asleep, then there were… two.

    TWO human cannon balls, shooting to the sun,
    One is tangled in the roof, then there was… one.

    ONE giant circus tent, known as the Big Top,
    Doors are closing for the day, now it’s time to…


  5. Deborah Agranat Sullivan says:

    SO much to love here – could you have painted more fun illustrations?? Kids (and their caregivers) would be cracking up through the entire story!

  6. sunflowerscribe says:

    This challenge came at a good time for me! I’ve been working on a project for my father-in-law that I’ve meant to finish. He is an artist, and I’m making a family ABC book for him and his grandbabies to enjoy together. I had only made it to the letter F. Now it’s written, and I have to create a photo book for him. =)

    ABC’s of Abstract Art
    (Concept: ABC, Setting: Art Gallery)

    Written by Christine Alemshah

    A is for Abstract Art
    Where what you feel is what you see.
    Come on this ABC Journey with me.

    B is for bird, and branches, and brush strokes on the page
    C is for cello, and canvas
    D is dashes and dots and decorative elements
    E is for Elephant and edge, where two lines meet.
    F is for fancy tea parties, flowers, and flowing lines.
    G is for a garden of plants gathered together.
    H is for happy squiggles, and lines make you feel an emotion.
    What do you feel when you see this painting?
    I is for image like this finch that inspires art.
    J is for Jack, and K is King printed on a deck of cards.
    L is for lines, and M is for Masterpiece, this great work of our spread big and wide.
    N is for numbers. Can you count three cheetahs painted on this page?
    O is for over. The cheetah is perched in the trees over the jungle.
    P is for purple in all different shades.
    Q is for queen, another card in the deck.
    R is for rhinos playing in the mud.
    S is for a school of fish.
    T is triangles. Can you find them on this page?
    U is for underneath the Acacia trees as animals roam on the savannah.
    V is for viola
    W is windows on buildings by the bridge.
    X is created where two lines cross. Can you find the letter X?
    Y is where two giraffe necks meet. Can you see the letter Y?
    Z is for zebras with zipping zig-zag lines.

  7. jensubra says:

    (wc: 84/colors/fall)

    Air turns frosty.
    Sky’s bright BLUE.
    I feel fall coming.
    Do you, too?

    GREEN grass turns
    a frosty WHITE
    when it gets too
    cold at night.

    Crisp, RED apples
    drop from trees.
    YELLOW flowers
    make me sneeze!

    ORANGE pumpkins
    carved with faces.
    Smiling from their
    front porch places.

    BROWN, crunchy leaves
    raked into piles.
    Kids run and jump
    with squeals and smiles.

    BLACK crows gather
    by the road
    eating corn
    dropped from a load.

    PURPLE sunsets.
    Chilly nights.
    Fall is full of
    lovely sights.

  8. martyfindley says:

    By Marty Findley
    (WC: 99)

    Concept: Counting By Twos Setting: Jungle

    Toucan plucks two from the bush.
    He’s very careful not to smush.

    In the basket go two more.
    All together that makes four.

    Two more go into the mix.
    Now the berries total six.

    He sees two more right at the top.
    Into the basket they go – plop!

    Now the berries equal eight.
    Plump and juicy, ripe and great!

    Two more make a sum of ten.
    He’ll pick the last two spheres and then-

    A dozen berries – Oh, so yummy!
    That makes twelve inside his tummy!

    No more berries left for brunch.
    Guess we’ll have to wait for lunch!

  9. Susanna Leonard Hill says:


    weather /city country

    By Dawn Young

    What is the weather like where you live?
    Some children live in the city
    Some children live in the country.
    Some days are full of sunshine.
    Some days are full of clouds.
    Some days are rainy.
    On rainy days you may hear loud booms of thunder!
    Sometimes flashes of lightening zip across the sky.
    Some days are cold and rainy.
    If the temperature is below freezing, rain may turn to sleet.
    Some days are cold and snowy.
    If the wind blows hard, snow may form a blizzard.
    Before you go outside to play,
    Always check the weather!

  10. Susanna Leonard Hill says:


    The Colors in the Farm
    By Isabel Cruz Rodriguez
    (WC: 100; Colors; Farm)

    What are the colors
    You can find in a Farm?
    A red-headed rooster
    And the roof on the barn.
    A brown hog named Hanna
    With a yellow banana.
    A black spotted goat
    Clangs a bell ‘round her throat.
    The bell’s color is brass
    And the goat eats green grass.
    A blue bird picks worms
    Near the grey stone-filled creek
    Where a white duck quacks
    With his orange beak.
    So many colors like those in a rainbow
    The Lord created them for us all
    I wish to return to the farm full of colors
    Especially in Seasons of Summer and Fall.

  11. rosecappelli says:

    Thanks for another fun week, Susanna!

    One Fine Bluebird (107 words)
    (numbers/bird life cycle, back yard)

    1 fine bluebird
    waves a wing
    perches high
    starts to sing

    2 together
    build a nest
    woven grasses
    time to rest

    3 smooth eggs
    then next day 4
    not done yet
    just one more

    5 eggs nestled
    way down deep
    pecking, cracking
    then a cheep

    fruits and berries
    insects, too
    no end to eating
    for this crew

    5 plump fledglings
    set to fly
    one ventures out
    up to the sky

    4 bluebird babies
    push and nudge
    3 left, then 2
    last one won’t budge

    just one hop
    into the air
    a tiny treasure
    a perfect prayer

    1 fine bluebird
    waves a wing
    perches high
    starts to sing

  12. Erin Cleary (ClearyWriter) says:

    ROAD TRIP! by Erin Cleary
    104 words (counting, car trip)

    ONE family getting ready. Got our luggage, maps, and snacks.
    TWO parents in the front seat.
    THREE children in the back.
    FOUR side windows showing all the sights for us to see—
    FIVE cows grazing in a field,
    SIX eagles flying free,
    Hot geysers bubbling up into a misty water haze,
    SEVEN bridges stretching out across the waterways,
    License plates from other states—we’ll try to count them all,
    EIGHT mountains reaching for the clouds,
    NINE redwoods standing tall.
    The hotel lights invite us in.
    We each let out a yawn.
    TEN tired eyes close to the day.
    Back on the road at dawn!

  13. seschipper says:

    Concept – Place/Location Setting – School
    Wise Willie Wonders Where
    By Susan Schipper
    WC 119

    Wise Willie loves to search
    all around his school.
    He looks for things and where they are
    He knows that’s very cool!

    If he looks up when he’s outside
    He sees the sky so blue.
    When he looks down he sees the ground
    and even sees his shoes!

    Inside his classroom Willie sits
    next to his best friend.
    Then Sonya sits between them,
    Now Willie’s on the end.

    Wise Willie knows there’s lots of words
    That tell us where things are
    In, on top of, left and right
    There’s also near and far!

    So, next time you are looking around
    Willie knows that you’ll agree
    There’s lots of words that tell us where
    It’s easy as can be!

  14. Ashley Sierra (@AshleySierra06) says:

    On My First Easter Party
    by Ashley Sierra
    52 words
    counting, Easter

    On my first Easter party my classmates left for me . . .

    12 plastic egg shells
    11 candy wrappers
    10 wind-up bunnies
    9 gooey gummies
    8 droopy tulips
    7 broken baskets
    6 brown jelly beans (I hope)
    4 cottontails
    3 dyed eggs
    2 bags of grass
    and a half-eaten chocolate bunny!

  15. lynjekowsky says:

    Senses Dance at the Beach
    by Lyn Jekowsky

    (senses, beach, wc 98)

    The beach, a favorite playground,
    invites all your senses to dance.
    What do you hear, feel, taste,
    smell and see as you have fun?

    Hear the CAW of gulls
    as they soar above you,
    and the rattle of pebbles
    as they tumble at the ocean’s edge.

    Feel the grittiness
    of the warm sand
    when you lie down
    after a swim In the cold ocean.

    Smell the sour, dried up seaweed,
    crabs, and shells,
    and the sweet, salty air.
    Taste the salt on your tongue.

    See the sun sparkle
    on top of the waves
    as they march
    toward shore.

  16. Barbara Farr Renner says:

    My critique partners tell me my characters need to demonstrate more emotion. This was a good exercise for me to practice. Also, when my daughter was a little girl, she experienced trepidation over venturing out on new excursions, but ended up liking them in the end.

    by Barbara Renner
    Word Count: 109
    Emotions/Amusement Park

    “Rise and shine, we’re driving to Wally’s World.”
    Cassie moaned and buried her head in the pillow.

    “Look at the cows in the field. Moooo!”
    Cassie giggled and stared through the window.

    “We’re here! Let’s ride the roller coaster.”
    Cassie gasped and clutched Mom’s arm.

    “Here we go.”
    Cassie whimpered and closed her eyes.

    “Down we go.”
    Cassie screamed.

    “Up we go.”
    Cassie gagged and grasped her stomach.

    “Down we go.”
    Cassie squealed and raised her arms.

    “Want a snow cone?”
    Cassie swallowed and nodded her head.

    “Time to go home.”
    Cassie hummed and held Mom’s hand.

    “Good night. I hope you had fun.”
    Cassie hugged Mom, “Thank you.”

  17. Susanna Leonard Hill says:


    Aly Kenna
    (112 words)
    Alphabet/Car Trip

    When school is out the alphabet play.
    Today they’re going on a big holiday.

    ABCD are first in the car.
    EFG H don’t want to go far.
    IJKL argue over a snack.
    MNOP sit way in the back.
    QRST squeeze right in the middle.
    No one worries if P has to piddle?
    UVW tie themselves in a knot.
    X scoops them up and finds a nice spot.
    Y and Z are always the last.
    It’s their job to check the forecast.

    Mile after mile they sing their theme song.
    Wait someone shouts, “There’s something wrong!”
    “We’re missing U,” someone called out on cue.
    V winked at W – U was with 2.

  18. Elenore Byrne says:

    A Trolley full of Feelings
    Elenore Byrne
    WC: 152
    Using: Concept – Feelings, Setting – Supermarket

    Sitting up tall with a welcoming smile,
    Hands clutch the rail as they roll down the aisle.
    Avi feels calm.

    In the bakery section his eyes start to twinkle,
    He stretches his reach to the donuts with sprinkles.
    Avi feels excited.

    He crosses his arms when his mum shakes her head,
    His face makes a frown. The aisle misled.
    Avi feels disappointed.

    He pokes and he prods as the trolley is filled,
    Tipping and tapping, it’s hard to sit still.
    Avi feels bored.

    At the fruit aisle mum offers a golden delicious,
    He bats it away, his eyes dark and vicious.
    Avi feel mad.

    The apple knocks down a display of red beans,
    His face turns to red as he hides from the scene.
    Avi feel embarrassed.

    They arrive at the counter, their shopping complete,
    Mum heaves out a sigh and gives Avi his treat.
    Avi feels happy and Mum is relieved.

  19. Deborah Agranat Sullivan says:

    Such a relatable scene! I never realized how many emotions the supermarket evokes .. glad that this one ends on a high note (they don’t always 😉

  20. Joyce Uglow says:

    It’s Time for the State Fair! by Joyce Uglow
    (time, fair, alphabet) word count: 121

    12:00 Midnight
    1:00 A.M. Animals rest
    2:00 A.M. Bakers bake
    3:00 A.M. Children dream
    4:00 A.M. Drivers deliver
    5:00 A.M. Entertainers prepare
    6:00 A.M. Families wake
    7:00 A.M. Gates open
    8:00 A.M. Horses neigh
    9:00 A.M. Ice cream chills
    10:00 A.M. Jump houses bounce
    11:00 A.M. Kids grin
    12:00 Noon Lunchtime lemonade
    1:00 P.M. Magicians perform
    2:00 P.M. No more cotton candy!
    3:00 P.M. Off to ride the Tilt-a-Whirl
    4:00 P.M. Pick a duck!
    5:00 P.M. Queen crowned
    6:00 P.M. Roller coaster screams
    7:00 P.M. Sweet corn crunch
    8:00 P.M. Tractors pull
    9:00 P.M. Unusual vendors sell
    10:00 P.M. Wagons loaded with weary kids
    11:00 P.M. X-games! Yippee!
    12:00 Midnight ZZZZ… Animals rest up for another day at the State Fair.

  21. Jill Lambert says:

    They’re Coming!
    By Jill Lambert
    WC: 107, Concept-place/location, Setting-Halloween

    Goblins in a graveyard
    crouch and slouch
    between tall tombstones,
    over dead, dry grass,
    around a rusty rattling gate
    to march upon the gritty gravel road.

    Mummies in museums
    moan and groan
    inside closed cases,
    out into a haunted hallway,
    down some steep stairs,
    and silently slip onto the sidewalk.

    Werewolves in wild woods
    howl and growl
    behind twisted tree trunks,
    on top of a high hill,
    across the forgotten field,
    then slink past my metal mailbox.

    Creepy cackling creatures
    jump and thump
    upon each smooth step
    toward this hidden house.
    I hide beneath my window
    as they lurk before my door.

    Trick or treat!

  22. Deborah Agranat Sullivan says:

    The Colorful Car Trip
    by Deb Sullivan
    100 words

    Concept: Colors
    Setting: Car Trip

    Car trips are as fun as Uncle Elmor’s childhood stories.
    “Where are we going?” I ask.
    “Don’t worry,” says Mom. “You’ll like it.”
    Mom also thought I’d like green bean casserole.
    In the car, I grab rainbow bear.
    “Let’s find your colors.”
    Red is Dad’s face when we ask for directions.
    Orange is the goldfish snack I munch.
    Yellow means lemonade break!
    Green is the grass Fido waters.
    Blue is my mood in the car.
    Indigo is the crayon I just broke.
    Violet is the flower we speed by.
    “We’re here,” says Mom.
    “Wade’s Water Park?!”
    I love car trips!

  23. Marta Cutler says:

    Are We There Yet?
    By Marta Cutler
    (Counting / Road Trip / 73 words)

    ONE grey road, winding long and dry
    TWO towns
    THREE towns
    blurring whirring by
    FOUR scarecrows field dancing spry
    Are we there yet?

    FIVE telephone poles, wooden samurai
    SIX trees
    Birch trees
    white guardians hiding shy
    SEVEN cawing ravens, black rockets in the sky
    Are we there yet?!

    EIGHT cloud dragons swooping soaring high
    NINE stars
    Bright stars
    a glittering bullseye
    TEN winking, blinking lights of a firefly
    Are we there yet??!

    • Colleen Owen Murphy says:

      You have some great alliteration and internal rhyme throughout! I also love your last line. Well done!

    • Leslie Degnan says:

      We have the same title Martha but very different poems! I always counted things on long trips and I almost added counting to my story but resisted. LOVE the ravens cawing and dragons swooping. Very imaginative.

      • Marta Cutler says:

        Hi Leslie! No!!! Title telepathy! Oh I just read it – it’s delightful!! And thank you for the lovely comment!

  24. Colleen Owen Murphy says:

    Okay, so I wanted to take this story through ten, but the later numbers didn’t work as well with the progression. I used numbers and relative positions. And I, as per usual, went a bot over 100 words with 153. I do wish I could format font here so that every other section would be in italics to indicate the back and forth. It is that way in my Google doc. LOL

    The Number Line

    Conductor Count let out a shriek.
    “I told these cars, no hide-and-seek.
    They must be lined up, in a row,
    from one to five, for us to go.”

    “I’m sorry sir. Oh mercy me!
    The children will be late for tea.
    No time to waste. Let’s get it done.
    Our search begins with number…one.”

    “It’s perched on top of Captain’s Crest.”

    “We’ll dispossess it from its nest,
    then hook it up, and when we’re through
    we’ll search around for number…two!”

    “I see it! There behind the sign.
    Now one and two can recombine.”

    “Look under your Acacia tree.”

    “The number we need next, it’s…three!”

    “Oh mercy, just a couple more.
    Let’s quickly locate number…four.”

    “Oh wait! I found it straightaway–
    right in front of platform A.”

    “And down the hill, on Depot Drive,
    our last objective, number…five.”

    “Hooray! Their order’s been restored
    So, come on children…all aboard!”

  25. Bevin Rolfs Spencer says:

    Five at the Fair
    (Numbers/Counting, the fair. I wanted to show the concept of five. The asterisks are there to show different ways to represent five.)
    Bevin Rolfs Spencer

    A family of five arrives at the fair. Line up at the ticket booth!
    Grandpa is first, he buys the tickets. Mom comes second, reading a map. Dad is third, checking his watch. Brother is fourth, hiding behind Dad. Sister is fifth, twirling around. It’s hard to wait.
    Grandpa gives them each a ticket. How many tickets did he buy?
    The fair is so much fun! Where should they go first?
    The roller coaster! Everyone jumps in a car.
    Watch five heads go upside down!
    Two (2) in the first car. * *
    Two (2) in the second car. **
    One (1) in the third car. *
    Who is in the last car?
    Brother wants to play the bottle game. He gets 3 three baseballs.
    He winds up for a pitch.
    The first ball knocks down three (3) bottles. ***
    The second ball crashes two (2) more. **
    The third ball hits the wall. Zero (0) bottles fall!
    Mom plays the ring toss game. She gets five (5) five rings.
    The first one lands on the ground. *
    The second one lands on the top of the grid. *
    The third one lands in the middle. *
    The fourth one lands on the bottom. *
    The fifth one lands on an animal’s horn hanging from the booth. *
    Can you find it?
    Grandpa wants ice cream. He orders a waffle cone sundae with:
    Two (2) scoops of vanilla. **
    One (1) scoop of chocolate. *
    Two (2) scoops of strawberry. **
    Plus, whipped cream and chocolate sauce. How many scoops did he get?
    Next, sister runs to the Carousel of Happiness.
    Mom and Dad sit in the swan. Sister picks the unicorn and Brother rides the pig. ****
    Grandpa is in the back, on an elephant. *
    How many people are in the swan?
    Last, Dad heads to the bumper cars. Everyone wants to drive! The arena is full of cars zipping and zooming and bouncing around.
    Dad drives car number 1.
    Grandpa crashes in car number 2.
    Mom bumpety bumps in car number 3.
    Brother gets stuck in car number 4.
    Sister spins around in car number 5.
    Can you find them all?
    The fair is so fun, but this family is done!
    They wind their way back through all the spaces.
    Cotton candy smiles, on all five faces.

  26. Leslie Degnan says:

    ARE WE THERE YET? (WC:115)
    Les Degnan
    (Time /Amusement Park)

    “Are we there yet?” asks Amelia.
    How long will this trip be?
    I’m finally tall enough to ride
    Alone.” she says with glee.

    I want to ride the Ferris Wheel
    The Tilt-a-Whirl and then,
    Scream on the roller coaster
    When it flies around a bend!

    “Are we there yet?” asks Amelia.
    How many minutes more?
    Last year we rode the dodge ‘em cars!
    We bumped and I’m still sore!

    I want to eat hot funnel cakes,
    Cotton candy, krinkle fries,
    I’ll eat until my belly aches.
    Corn dogs and Whoopi pies!

    “Are we there yet?” asks Amelia.
    “Is that the Ferris wheel?”
    “It is! It is! We’re finally here!”
    She claps and gives a squeal.

  27. savoringeverymoment says:

    A Win at Walmart
    by Sara Kruger
    word count: 79

    1 shopping cart that is ready to go
    2 types of Apples, Fuji and Cameo
    3 loaves of bread–we adore toast and jam
    4 kinds of meat, sausage, chicken, beef, and ham
    5 packs of bacon because it’s on sale.
    6 boxes of crackers–those never go stale.
    7 bags of chips that are sold in a pack.
    8 cans of beans, navy, pinto, white and black
    9 people waiting to do self check out
    10 dollars saved. High five! Quiet shout!

  28. Lauren Scott - Children's Author (@SpeechieAuthor) says:

    Circus Opposites

    Go or stop. Lots or one.

    Heading out for heaps of fun.

    On or off. Up or down.

    I can see a circus clown.

    In or out. High or low.

    See how fast his hands can go.

    Stand or fall. Step or stay.

    Tightrope walkers train all day.

    Fast or slow. Flat or round.

    See them jump right off the ground.

    Pass or catch. Low or high.

    Watching their trapeze swing by.

    Launch or land. Straight or bent.

    Almost touch the circus tent.

    Tall or short. Hold or toss.

    Mum, I want some fairy floss.

    Day or night. Hot or cold.

    Circus fun for young and old.

  29. Allison Strick (she/her) (@byallisonstrick) says:

    146 words
    Concept: Place/Location
    Setting: City

    Baby and Mommy are out for a walk,
    Rocking and rolling til Mom stops to talk.

    Babe sees his chance and pulls out his controller.
    Lookout, everybody! A…

    He steers down the sidewalk and crosses the street.
    Waves at the ice cream truck, snags a cool treat.

    Under an archway and into the square,
    Laughing and loving the wind in his hair.

    But baby has dreams of a bigger vacation.
    He bumps down the steps into Grand Central Station!

    Where should he go? Northeast or southwest?
    The big sign above him is making him stressed.

    With a flick of a switch, his stroller’s a plane!
    He zooms through the skylight and into…
    the rain.

    Perhaps his adventure can happen tomorrow.
    He flies between skyscrapers, heart filled with sorrow.

    He spies a familiar umbrella below,
    And lands as Mom turns to him. “Ready to go?”

  30. susaninez0905 says:

    Ghost Crabs At The Beach
    By: Susan Summers
    WC: 155 [Counting,seashore]

    There’s a secret to discover when you go to the beach.
    Late at night, there are many tiny ‘ghosts’ within reach.

    One, two, three, four, five, six – little crabs come to play.
    Seven, eight, head on straight to the water, where they stay.

    Nine and ten, dash and then, ride a wave to the shore.
    All the crabs, having fun, dunks and dives – and much more!

    They run back to the sand. Ten, nine, eight head back home.
    Seven, six, scamper quick. Up the beach, they soon roam.

    Five, four, three, stop and see, other friends on the shore.
    With a tumble, they all play, then turn back home once more.

    Two and one had their fun, splishing, sploshing in the sea.
    It’s time to go to their holes. They waltz home happily.

    As the sun pokes its head in the sky, waves ker-splash.
    No ghosts here, all is clear. Until later, when they’ll dash.

  31. Jeannette Suhr says:

    Ups and Downs
    Emotions – amusement park
    Jeannette Suhr w/c – 74

    Excitement abounds
    At the Amusement Park!
    Rides and candy
    From dawn until dark.

    Roller coasters thrills,
    Hands in the air.
    Twists and loops.
    Stand-up straight hair.

    Sticky cotton candy.
    Dripping ice cream cones.
    Stomach doing flip flops.
    Mouth emitting groans.

    Need a diversion.
    Throwing darts at balloons.
    Laughter at the petting zoo.
    Surprise-filled afternoon.

    Sad as the park closes.
    The day passed too fast.
    Squeeze in photo booth and fireworks.
    We had a blast!

  32. Elizabeth Meyer Zu Heringdorf says:

    Sleepytime ABCs
    A Story for Reluctant Sleepers
    Elizabeth Meyer zu Heringdorf
    Alphabet, Bedroom

    ABC wants to ask you to bed.
    DEF says to lay down your head.
    GHI wants to stop all your giggling,
    JKL pleads to just stop all your wriggling.
    MNO means that the light must go out,
    PQR says to wipe off your pout.
    STU tries hard to sing you to sleep,
    VWX is the vampire up from the deep.
    Y is the yelling when Mama is out,
    And Z is the zzzs that you can’t do without.

  33. readmybook2002 says:

    Concept: Emotions/Numbers: sadness, disgust, fear, surprise, anticipation, happiness/joy
    Setting: Supermarket
    Words: 100
    Bru Benson
    Mama has a shopping list. I want to help.
    What is first?
    One Onion.
    Onions make me cry.
    Put the onion in the cart for me, please Mama
    What’s next?
    Two Ripe Bananas.
    The bananas are too squishy to hold in my hand. Yeck!
    Put the two bananas in the cart for me, please Mama.
    What else?
    Three fresh fish.
    The fish have scary eyes.
    Put the three fish in the cart for me, Mama.
    What’s next?
    A special surprise.
    Am I done helping you?
    Almost. Here’s your favorite cookie to eat.
    Crunch, I’m glad I helped Mama shop today.

  34. Marta Cutler says:

    I don’t know about everyone else, but every time I sit down to write one of these, more pop into my head!

    Weather or Not
    By Marta Cutler
    (Weather/ Country / 79 words)

    Mom says, “Play in the field.”
    But rain is pelting, “No!”
    Thunder is booming, “Don’t go!”
    I don’t think so!

    Mom says, “Play in the woods.”
    But hail is clattering, “Stay away!”
    Wind is blustering, “Too grey!”
    Another day!

    Mom says, “Play in the yard.”
    But snow is squalling, “Beware!”
    Ice is snapping, “Cold air!”
    I don’t dare!

    Mom says, “Play later!”
    But sun is beaming, “Summer’s begun!”
    Breeze is whispering, “So fun!”
    Sorry Mom – I must run!

  35. marty says:

    Susanna, thanks for yet another challenging prompt!
    I’ve loved reading everyone’s postings. So clever and fun!

    AT THE BEACH by Marty Bellis
    (wc 121)
    Concept: senses
    Setting: beach

    Squish the sand between your toes.
    Sniff the breeze that tickles your nose.
    Hear the waves whoosh swoosh, swoosh swish,
    as seagulls screech and dive for fish.

    The sun feels hot upon your skin.
    The water’s cold when you wade in.
    The spray tastes salty on your lips
    and sparkles on your fingertips.

    You spy three crabs, one tiny snail.
    Find different seashells for your pail.
    Abalone – smooth and shiny.
    A murex – pink and ridged and spiny.
    In one you hear the ocean roar
    You search again to find some more.

    They all get added to your pile
    to take back home, to make you smile.
    When you can’t feel and touch the beach
    your treasures keep it all in reach.

  36. Hannah Roy LaGrone says:

    Counting the Colors of Sunset // Contando los colores del atardecer
    82 words
    by Hannah Roy LaGrone
    Concepts: Counting/Colors Setting: Beach

    One gray dolphin flipping // Un delfín gris volteando
    Two green popsicles dripping // Dos paletas verdes goteando

    Three purple kites flying // Tres cometas moradas volando
    Four brown seagulls crying // Cuatro gaviotas marrones llamando

    Five red crabs racing // Cinco cangrejos rojos corriendo
    Six black pelicans chasing // Seis pelícanos negros persiguiendo

    Seven yellow sunbeams flashing // Siete rayos de sol amarillos parpadeando
    Eight orange fishes splashing // Ocho peces naranjas salpicando

    Nine blue waves breaking // Nueve olas azules rompiendo
    Ten white stars waking // Diez estrellas blancas subiendo

  37. Robin Currie says:

    Farm Time
    What time is it? Time to get up! Don’t look at the clock – it’s Rooster time.
    What time is it? Time to do milking! Don’t look at the clock – it’s Cow time.
    What time is it? Time to get eggs! Don’t look at the clock – it’s Chicken time.
    What time is it? Time to open the gate! Don’t look at the clock – it’s Sheep time.
    What time is it? Time to ride! Don’t look at the clock – it’s Horse time.
    What time is it? Time to feed scraps! Don’t look at the clock – it’s Pig time.
    What time is it? Time for bed! Don’t look at the clock – it’s Dove time.

  38. syorkeviney says:

    Halloween Alphabet by Sally Yorke-Viney
    Concepts: Halloween and Alphabet
    This is over 100 wc… I tried but the alphabet worked against me!

    A is for apples, we
    Bob and get wet
    C is the candy corn that we get
    D is for Dracula, he’s make believe
    E is for Eerie, I hold sister’s sleeve
    F is for Frankenstein green and immense
    G’ s for the Ghosts and ghoulies we sense
    H is for haunted, we giggle and run
    I is for icky, we’re just having fun
    J’s for the jack-o-lantern smiling his grin
    K’s for the kids and the costumes they’re in
    L’s for the lantern with a strange orange glow
    M is for monster, it’s time that we go
    N is for nighttime
    O’s for October
    P’s for the pumpkins, our
    Quest is not over
    R’s for a robot of tin foil and boxes
    S is the Scarecrows that hang on mailboxes
    T’s trick or treating with family and friends
    Until we are tired and finally then..
    V is for Vampire, he creeps me out
    W is the Witch who’ll be flying about
    X, examine each candy you get.
    Y is for yawns and Z’s a sure bet
    Soon we will sleep and everyone’s snoring
    This Halloween was way far from boring!

  39. Deb Buschman (@DebBuschman) says:

    By Deb Buschman
    Concept: Alphabet
    Setting: Road Trip

    “I get the front,” yelled A.
    “No fair,” said Z. “You always get front.”
    P stepped up and made peace. “Let’s start with Z and go backwards this once.”
    “Okay,” grumbled A.
    The alphabet piled into the van. Z, Y, X, W, V, U, T, S, R, Q, P, O, N, M, L, K, J, I, H, G, F, E, D, C, B and a grouchy A in the back.
    Off they went.
    “Look! A Zebra,” said Z.
    “I can’t see,” said C.
    And that’s when it started.
    D dodged C.
    E fell on F.
    G grunted under H, and I. J kicked K and K kissed him back. “Yuck!” said L.
    Q R S pinched T U V.
    “Peace please,” said P. The van stopped.
    “I don’t think this is working,” said Z. “Let’s get back in order.”
    So, the van loaded again. A, B, C, D, E, F, G, H, I, J, K, L, M, N, O, P, Q, R, S, T, U, V, W, X, Y and “Let’s get this show on the road,” said Z in back.

  40. Sarah Meade says:

    By Sarah Meade
    Word Count: 164

    At Grandma’s house every season feels like magic.

    At Grandma’s house in springtime . . .
    In the kitchen we bake carrot cake and lemon tarts.
    In the backyard we play croquet.
    On the sofa we read about eggs and seeds and all sorts of new life.

    At Grandma’s house in the summertime . . .
    In the kitchen we sip lemonade and whip up strawberry shortcake.
    In the backyard we splash in the sprinkler.
    On the sofa we enjoy epic pirate adventures and fantastical fairy tales.

    At Grandma’s house in the fall . . .
    In the kitchen we peel apples for pies and applesauce.
    In the backyard we rake leaf piles to pounce on.
    On the sofa we read spooky stories and then tales of gratitude.

    At Grandma’s house in the winter . . .
    In the kitchen we craft gingerbread houses and crunch candy-cane cookies.
    In the backyard we scoop snowballs into snowmen.
    On the sofa we share stories of faith and hope and love.

    At Grandma’s house every season feels like magic.

  41. Amy Leskowski says:

    Not the Only One
    By Amy Leskowski
    Numbers, School, 180 words

    One couldn’t wait to start kindergarten.
    She rushed in to grab the first seat.
    But some 1 was there.
    “I’m One. That’s my chair!”
    She scowled and anchored her feet.

    “I’m 1, too.” Neither one moved.
    “Two Ones? That’s impossible! No!
    It’s always just me.
    Then there’s Two and then Three—”
    Yet the room filled with kids One didn’t know.

    “2’s in Two’s spot! And where’s Three?”
    Three peeked from behind a propped door.
    The kid some called “3”
    hollered, “3? Yeah, that’s me!”
    which garnered confusion from Four.

    “No, you’re not Three. I don’t know you.
    I’m always partners with Three.
    “Oh yeah?” 4 objected,
    like he’d been disrespected.
    “Not a chance. 3 gets paired up with me.”

    Five and 5 wouldn’t make eye contact.
    Six and 6 fought over books.
    Seven seemed mad,
    which made 7 feel sad.
    Eight and 8 traded mean looks.

    But not all the students were gloomy.
    “Let me guess what your name is,” said Nine.
    9 grinned and YAYed
    These new friends had it made,
    now sharing the back of each line.

  42. Katie Schwartz says:

    By Katie Schwartz
    (counting, beach, 163 words)

    The beach! A perfect place to play
    on a sunlit summer day.

    One bright yellow smiling sun.
    I wave at him because it’s fun!

    Two crabs scamper left and right
    Quick! Into holes and out of sight.

    Three sandpipers in a row
    On twiggy legs, they’re on the go!

    Four dolphins weave through waves and more
    They splash and spray and play and soar.

    Five fluffy clouds, they’re faraway
    No rain allowed on our beach day!

    Six shiny shells and starfish too
    wash up from the briny blue.

    Seven surfers paddle out
    Cowabunga! Waves, they shout!

    Eight gulls swoop, the fishes fly
    Some get a ride high in the sky!

    Nine waves break, white foamy caps.
    Just like that, they all collapse.

    10 palms with coconuts stand tall
    Who knows when one – or all – might fall!

    “It’s time”, Mom calls, “Beach day is done.”
    I wave bye to the setting sun.

    Grab towels, chairs, umbrella, and
    leave just our footprints in the sand.

  43. Grinny Butler says:

    At the Beach
    By Sarah Hawklyn
    Concept book.

    Today we go to the beach.
    I watch OUT the window as the world rushes by.
    When we travel THROUGH the tunnel, I hold my breath and Papa honks the horn.
    AROUND the corner is the beach.
    We run to pick a spot to lay our towels DOWN on the sand.
    The sun is hot. Mama rubs sunscreen ON my skin, so I don’t burn.
    I watch the seagulls fly ABOVE me.
    Time to swim. I dive UNDER the water.
    I find a hermit crab IN his shell.
    Day is done, time to go. What a wonderful day.

  44. Michelle S. Kennedy (@MichelleSKenned) says:

    FARM LIFE (WC 115)
    By Michelle S. Kennedy

    Red are the apples that bake in the pie—
    grown by the sun in the warm summer sky.

    Orange are the kittens that frolic the barn—
    having a ball getting tangled in yarn.

    Yellow’s the corn growing tall on the stalks—
    hiding my gran’pa and me on our walks.

    Green is the tractor that plows up the field—
    helping us harvest the veggies we yield.

    Blue are my overalls covered in dirt—
    also, my boots, and my hat and my shirt!

    Purple’s the sky as it sets for the night—
    moon gives a glow like a halo of light.

    These are the colors of life on the farm—
    simple and sweet with it’s countrified charm.

  45. Linda Schueler says:

    seasons, market
    Word count: 100
    by: Linda Schueler

    We’re going to the market…

    It’s spring!

    The plants are waking up
    Rhubarb, asparagus, and radishes
    Carrots, lettuce, and near the end some strawberries
    Every week the choice gets bigger

    It’s summer!

    A most abundant season
    Peaches, plums, and raspberries
    Cucumbers, zucchinis, and peas
    It’s jamming time

    It’s fall! 

    Harvest time
    Apples, pears, and watermelon
    Corn, pumpkins, and sweet potatoes
    Time to stock up on root vegetables

    It’s winter

    Pickings are slim but as delicious
    Apples, cabbage, and kale
    Brussel sprouts, onions, and squash
    Eat some jam for a reminder of sun kissed summer fruit

    Until the cycle starts again

  46. Lauri Meyers says:

    This week is both easy and hard. Yes, I can think of Halloween shapes but finding a throughline to hold it together is hard. I’m going to do a lot of mining with this prompt!
    Lauri Meyers
    Halloween + Counting
    80 words
    Five little monsters knocking on the door,
    One stopped to eat and then there were four.
    Four little monsters on a candy spree
    One got a tummy ache and then there were three
    Three little monsters yelling Eek! and Boo!
    One got scared and then there were two
    Two little monsters too tired to run
    One took a nap and then there was one
    One little monster all alone isn’t fun
    He went home and then there were … Five!

  47. Nicole Loos Miller says:

    by Nicole Loos Miller
    (Amusement Park and Emotions, 81 words)

    I’m going on a ROLLER COASTER! It’s going to be so much fun…
    once we actually get there. The longest line in history is making me impatient at the moment.
    Okay, we’re next. We’re NEXT! I’m so excited!!!
    What’s this bar for? My safety?! What’s that supposed to mean? What if I change my mind?
    Eek! Here we go! Oh, gosh, this is a really tall hill! I can’t look – I’m terrified!
    Whoa, that was exhilarating!

    Can we go again?

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