With Prideful Heart – The 7th Annual Valentiny Contest Is HERE!!!

Hi Everyone! I’m so sorry, but there is absolutely no chance I’m going to have finalists Friday morning as I originally posted. I’m not even sure when to say I will have them, though I’ll get them up as soon as I can. It will not be over this weekend, I’m sure of that. Thank you all for your patience. I’m so sorry for the delay!

[For those trying to post, you must click on the Blog Post Title to get on the blog post page and access the comments]

Roses are red

Violets are blue

Valentinies rock

And so do YOU!

Whether your characters are filled with pride and joy, puffed up with pride, or in danger of pride going before a fall, the time has come for . . .

The 7th Annual Valentiny Writing Contest

~ for children’s writers ~

The Contest:  since writing for children is all about “big emotion for little people” (I forget who said that, but someone did so I put it in quotes!) and Valentines Day is all about emotion, write a Valentines story appropriate for children (children here defined as ages 12 and under) maximum 214 words in which someone feels proud!  They can be proud in a good way or a bad way. They can be proud of themselves for asking someone to be their Valentine, or they can be proud of how they asked. They can be proud of a Valentine they make, or a Valentine celebration they plan. They can be proud of giving something up, or proud of asking someone they’re not sure about for some reason in order to be nice. They can be proud of their performance in a Valentines Day play or concert or parade. . . sky’s the limit!  Just make sure it is clearly Valentine-centered! Think beyond the obvious!  Your story can be poetry or prose, sweet, funny, surprising or anything in between, but it will only count for the contest if it includes someone proud (can be the main character but doesn’t have to be) and is 214 words (get it? 2/14 for Valentines Day 😊 ) You can go under the word count but not over! (Title is not included in the word count.)  If you are so inclined, you are welcome to enter more than one entry – just remember you’ll be competing against yourself 😊  No illustration notes please!

Post your story in the comment section below between right now this very second and Sunday February 13th by 11:59 PM EDT.  There will be no regularly scheduled posts for the duration of the contest (Tuesday Debut, Would You Read It, or PPBF), so the post and all of your entries will stay up for everyone to enjoy.  If you have difficulty with the comments, which unfortunately sometimes happens, you may email your entry to me and I’ll post it for you. [Also, a small note: I have a serious family situation at the moment. I didn’t want to cancel the contest at the last minute, but please be patient with me if it takes me a while to post emailed entries and update the link list etc. I will do my best, but apologies in advance for delays.]

The Judging: my lovely assistants and I will narrow down the entrants to 6-12 top choices depending on number and quality of entries (hee hee hee – you know how much trouble I have with the narrowing, so we’ll see) which will be posted here and voted on for a winner on Friday February 18th (or possibly a day or two later if the judges need extra time.)   The winner will be announced Monday February 21st depending on judging and voting time needed.  The dates of the judging/voting/winner announcements are subject to finagling depending on how much time the judges actually end up needing!

Judging criteria will include:

  1. Kid-appeal/Kid-friendliness – remember, this is a story for kids!
  2. Creativity in using pride, and success in making us feel the pride (whether it’s good pride or bad)!
  3. Valentine’s Day appropriateness – this is a VALENTINE story and Valentine’s Day must be central to it!
  4. Quality of story – we will look for basic story elements and a true story arc
  5. Quality of writing – use and flow of language, correctness of mechanics, excellence of rhyme and meter if you use it, PROOFREADING!
  6. Originality – surprise us with something new and different! 😊
  7. How well you followed the Submission Guidelines – agents and editors expect professionalism. This is a chance to practice making sure you read and follow specified guidelines.

The Prizes:  As always, we are so fortunate to have an abundance of wonderful prizes donated by our very generous friends in the kidlit community! Just look at all these goodies!

⭐️ Picture Book Manuscript Read & Critique from agent Mary Cummings of Great River Literary, “an agency devoted exclusively to representing authors and author/illustrators of books for children and teens. Strong relationships with editors have resulted in a rapidly growing list of sales of board and picture books, chapter books and novels to such publishing houses as Knopf; Philomel; Viking; Nancy Paulsen/Penguin; Balzer & Bray; Walker; Little, Brown; Henry Holt; Holiday House; Feiwel & Friends; FSG; Running Press; WorthyKids; Abrams; Random House; Wiseman S & S; Chronicle; Candlewick; HarperCollins and many others.”

⭐️ 1/2 Hour Zoom Picture Book Manuscript Critique or Mentoring Session with author Lynne Marie!

Author Lynne Marie

Lynne Marie is the accomplished author of Hedgehog Goes to Kindergarten – art by Anne Kennedy (Scholastic 2011), Hedgehog’s 100th Day of School – art by Lorna Hussey (Scholastic 2017), The Star of the Christmas Play — art by Lorna Hussey (Beaming Books 2018), Moldilocks and the 3 Scares — art by David Rodriguez Lorenzo (Sterling 2019 and Scholastic 2019),  Let’s Eat! Mealtime Around the World — art by Parwinder Singh (Beaming Books 2019) and The Three Little Pigs And The Rocket Project — art by Wendy Fedan (Mac and Cheese Press 2022) and American Pie — art by Dea Lenihan (Dancing Flamingo Press, April 12, 2022)

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

⭐️ 30 Minute Zoom Ask Me Anything with Keila Dawson, author of THE KING CAKE BABY (Pelican Publishing 2016), NO VOICE TOO SMALL (Charlesbridge 2020), and OPENING THE ROAD: VICTOR HUGO GREEN AND HIS GREEN BOOK (Beaming Books, 2021)

⭐️ Access to author/editor Alayne Kay Christian‘s webinars! Alayne is the author of BUTTERFLY KISSES FOR GRANDMA AND GRANDPA (Blue Whale Press, 2008), SIENNA THE COWGIRL FAIRY: COWBOY TROUBLE (Blue Whale Press 2021), THE WEED THAT WOKE CHRISTMAS (Blue Whale Press, 2020), and AN OLD MAN AND HIS PENGUIN (Blue Whale Press, 2020)

⭐️ Picture Book Manuscript Critique (fiction) from Melissa Stoller, author of SCARLET’S MAGIC PAINTBRUSH (Spork 2018), READY, SET, GORILLA! (Spork 2018), THE ENCHANTED SNOW GLOBE COLLECTION (chapter books) (Spork 2017), SADIE’S SHABAT STORIES (Spork, 2020) and PLANTING FRIENDSHIP: PEACE, SALAAM, SHALOM

⭐️ Picture Book Manuscript Critique from Rebecca Gardyn Levington author of BRAINSTORM! (Sleeping Bear Press, Summer 2022), I WILL ALWAYS BE…(HarperCollins, Spring 2024) and a contributor to the delightful anthology HOP TO IT: POEMS TO GET YOU MOVING (Pomelo Books, October 2020)

⭐️ Picture Book Manuscript Critique (nonrhyming) from Rebecca Kraft Rector, author of SQUISH SQUASH SQUISHED (Nancy Paulsen Books, Penguin Random House, 2021), LITTLE RED AND THE BIG BAD EDITOR (Aladdin, September 2022), and TRIA AND THE GREAT STAR RESCUE (Delacorte/Random House)

⭐️ Picture Book Manuscript Critique and Query Letter Critique from Jessica Stremer author of the forthcoming GREAT CARRIER REEF (Holiday House, 2023)

Author Jessica Stremer

⭐️ Picture Book Manuscript Critique from Cathy Ballou Mealey author of WHEN A TREE GROWS (Union Square Kids, 2019), SLOTH AND SQUIRREL IN A PICKLE (Kids Can Press, 2021), and the forthcoming MAKE MORE S’MORES (Sleeping Bear Press, 2023)

⭐️ Personalized Signed Copy of THE KING CAKE BABY by Keila Dawson

⭐️ Personalized Signed Copy of PLANTING FRIENDSHIP: PEACE, SALAAM, SHALOM by Melissa Berger Stoller

⭐️ Personalized Signed Copy of IT’S A MUFFULETTA! IT’S A WHATA? (Sprok 2021) by Patricia Saunders

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 birthday, holiday or other gift purchases, rating and/or reviewing their books on GoodReads, Amazon, B&N, or anywhere else if you like them, recommending them for school and library visits, and supporting them in any other way you can dream up! 😊

Now! Put your heart into it and proudly post your entries!

I can’t wait to read your stories!!!

Eager Readers: Check out the comment section for all the fabulous entries! 😊

ENTRIES (all entries are linked) [will be linked tomorrow – sorry for delay]

  1. The Perfect Present – Sara Kruger
  2. Dr. Basil Discovers His Secret Admirer – Royal Baysinger
  3. Teeny Houdini – Heather Ferranti Kinser
  4. How To Win At Wordle – Anne Lipton
  5. Eva Valentina’s Day – Katie Fischer
  6. Chick Forgot Valentine’s Day – Jess Burbank
  7. The Make-A-Valentine Contest – Hanna Geshelin
  8. Never Too Many Valentines – Lori C. Evans
  9. Proud As A Peacock – Bru Benson
  10. Valentine Farm – Jennifer Lowe
  11. Gary Groundhog Conquers The Shadow Monster – Deborah Foster
  12. Tucker And The Sneezies – Susan E. Schipper
  13. When Dad Is Away – Aileen Stewart
  14. It’s Valentine’s Day, Thomas, The Worm – Maria Lahman
  15. The House On The Corner – Elyse Trevers
  16. Staying In The Lines – Elizabeth Meyer zu Heringdorf
  17. Top Of The World – Christine Alemshah
  18. The Canape Caper – Cathy Stenquist
  19. My Icky Sticky Valentine – Chayala Nachum
  20. The Best Card Maker – Stephanie Maksymiw
  21. Dad Gets Weird On Valentine’s Day – Debbie Day
  22. The Valentine Tiff – Sally Yorke-Viney
  23. Glitter & Glue – Janna MacLean
  24. Heart Aflutter – Kelly Clasen
  25. Little Things – Molly Ippolito
  26. Veronica’s Surprise – Janel Caverly
  27. My Quiet Valentine – Amanda Sherlock
  28. Who’s Ana? – Ellie Langford
  29. Prince Of The Pride – Jessica Seitz
  30. Cupid’s Big Day – Marty Bellis
  31. A Match Made In Socks – Laura Heath
  32. Momma’s Smile – Amber Hendricks
  33. The Perfect Valentine – Kimberly Shrack
  34. Miss Frog And Mister Turtle – Sharon McCarthy
  35. The Trees Of The Girl Who Raised Bees – B.J. Genovese
  36. Mailbirds: Valentine’s Day – Reed Ambrose
  37. The Perfect Card – Keely Leim
  38. Valentine’s Day Is For Everyone – Janet Scratchley
  39. Valentine’s In The Jungle – Melissa Rafson Friedman
  40. The Lovesick Groundhog – Debbie Daugherty
  41. Rosas For Senor Perez – Carmen Castillo Gilbert
  42. Get Well Soon, Mrs. Love – Rebekah Hoeft
  43. A Valentine For You – Marty Findley
  44. Cupid, A New Generation – Linda Staszak
  45. A Valentine For Her – Marty Findley
  46. Mr. Sunder’s Valentine’s Day Cookie – Marta Cutler
  47. Valentine Countdown – Marta Cutler
  48. V’s For Valentine – Rachel Bandy
  49. ValenTINY – Jessica Milo
  50. Three Hearts – A. Kidd
  51. I Whale Always Love You – Kimberly Horch
  52. Isabella’s Valentine – Terrie Hellard-Brown
  53. Dear Moon – Carissa Brown
  54. A Nose For Love – Julie Kurtz
  55. Rabbit [heart] Rebecca – Anne Bromley
  56. The Heart Of A Wizard – Jany Campana
  57. Sweet Valentine – Daniella Kaufman
  58. The Valentine’s Cake – Kate Thompson
  59. Gene’s Forbidden Valentine – Vanessa Konoval
  60. The Best Part – Sarah Meade
  61. V-Day! – Sarah Meade
  62. The Special Valentine Card – Sherry Roberts
  63. Cutting Is Hard – Ashley Chance
  64. Hammie’s Valentine Surprise – Jenna Elyse Johnson
  65. Pinky’s Message – Elizabeth Muster
  66. Everyting You Taught Me – Shuba Mohan
  67. It’s A Matter Of Taste – Corine Timmer
  68. Broken Hearts Need Love Too – Stephanie Henson
  69. All Aboard – Debbie Whittam
  70. Dove Letters – Amy LaMae Brewer
  71. My Furry Valentine – Tiffany Hanson
  72. A Squawking Serenade – Tiffany Hanson
  73. Proud That You Are Mine – Tonnye Fletcher
  74. Mother, You Are One In A Million – Elaine D’Alessandro
  75. King Of Love – Sue Ko
  76. Rose’s Creative Valentines – Elaine D’Alessandro
  77. Dear Valentine – Jill Burns
  78. Subterranean Lovesick Blues – Andrea MacDonald
  79. Love, Mama And Me – Karen Olmstead
  80. A Gift For My Mami – Lana Montalban
  81. Baby Bear’s Heart – Lori Himmel
  82. Gumballs – Jill Purtee
  83. Beaming With Pride – Paul Kurtz
  84. Proud As A Peacock – Paul Kurtz
  85. Don’t-Let-The-Dung-Beetle-Make-The-Valentine-Brownies! – Donna Kurtz
  86. Best Valentine’s Day Ever! – Donna Kurtz
  87. To Sarah – Elizabeth Westra
  88. The Heart-Shaped Mitten – Sherri T. Mercer
  89. Love Inside – Kristy Roser Nuttall
  90. Valentine’s Field Trip – Darcee Freier
  91. Heart And Hands – Marjorie David
  92. Flicker’s Valentine – Laura Bost
  93. A Valentine For Birders – Geraldine Oades-Sese
  94. The Floofabims – Sabrina Shah
  95. I Wanted To Say I Love You – Joy Curtis
  96. Percy’s Performance – Allison Strick
  97. Showdown In Smoochalot – Jesse Anna Bornemann
  98. Theo’s Not-So-Perfect Valentine’s Day – Kelsey E. Gross
  99. Mama, Are You Proud Of Me? – Pamela Swanson
  100. Awesome Together – Sarah Hetu
  101. Valentine’s Breakfast For Mom – Patti Ranson
  102. Special Delivery – Emily Keener
  103. Harriet’s Cards – Jessica Reed
  104. Dolley’s Favorite Month – Lincoln Mansch
  105. Llama Love – Laura Bower
  106. Will You Be My Valentine? – Michelle S. Kennedy
  107. Sunshine Valentine – Vashti Verbowski
  108. Shelby’s Heartache – Susannah Lee
  109. Taffy’s Sweet Surprise – Mary Schultz
  110. Where Is Puppito? – Bridget Magee
  111. Princess Candace – Sheila R. Schmotzer
  112. Suzie And Jordan’s Special Day – Shadi Kafi
  113. Valentine Delivery – Part II (sequel to 2021 Valentine Contest Entry) – Katie Brandyberry
  114. A Friend For Valentine’s Day – Daniele Arndt
  115. Hoppy Belated Valentine – Zach Schloss
  116. Remember The Love – Ashley Murray
  117. The Proudest Pencil – Lori Sheroan
  118. My Gummy Love – Lauri C. Meyers
  119. Love ME – Melissa Rutigliano
  120. Love Potions And Laughter – Tiffany Hanson
  121. A Cake-tastrophe – Tiffany Hanson
  122. The Valentine’s Day Invitiational – Lori Keating
  123. Lost But Found – Armineh Manookian
  124. L-O-V-E – Ronda Einbinder
  125. Shakesbear In Love – MaryLee Flannigan
  126. A New Friend – Steve Jankousky
  127. What Kind Of Cupid Am I? – Alayne Kay Christian
  128. My Hero – Dawn Young
  129. Valentine’s Day Dance-Off In Nestville – Lynn Marie Moore
  130. Hidden In These Hallowed Hills – Shuba Mohan
  131. A Rose For Toad – Ashlee MacCallum
  132. I Do NOT Like Rohini Rao – Sandhya Acharya
  133. Untitled – M.M. Sutanto
  134. A Heart Of Gold – Ryan Schneck
  135. Haiku Valentines: Love In 5-7-5 Rhyme – Brenda Whitehead
  136. Kate’s Valentines – Sheila M. Hausbeck
  137. A Nest For Bluegill – Katie Palazzola
  138. A Puzzling Valentine – My Side Of The Phone Call… – Ingrid Boydston
  139. Smelly Kelly – Glenda Roberson
  140. Underneath It All – Carrie Charley Brown
  141. How To Find A Valentine – Bevin Rolfs Spencer
  142. My Daddy’s Valentine – Gayle Krause
  143. Proud Valentine’s Day – Deborah Hunt
  144. A Valentine For Annie B. Bear – Charlotte Dixon
  145. Valentine’s Day Heartache – Cindy Greene
  146. Valentine Shenanigans – Vasilia Graboski
  147. You Make Me So Proud – Erika Romero
  148. I Am Proud To Be Your Friend – Kerry Porter
  149. Love Somebody – Brigid Finucane
  150. Marcus Is Not An Elephant: How A Woolly Mammoth Makes A Friend – Susan Schwartz Twiggs
  151. Purple Lace – Liz Kehrli
  152. Puppy Love – Kathy Halsey
  153. Valentine’s Day Booty – Danielle Sharkan
  154. Wholeheartedly – Catherine Brewer
  155. Valentine Barks – Kathy Crable
  156. Oog Love Rock – Katie Palazzola
  157. C.I.T. (Cupid In Training) – Colleen Murphy
  158. Allie’s Biggest Heart – Julianna Helt
  159. Detective Spot And The Search For A New Cupid – Sophia Moore (age 10)
  160. The Valentine Surprise – Claire Noland
  161. The Purrfect Valentine – Tara Knox Cerven
  162. A Valentine For Mr. Weatherly – Lindsay Moretti
  163. A Proud Mum – Shariffa Keshavje
  164. Valentine’s Day At Sweet Pig’s – Patricia Corcoran
  165. Poppy’s Gift – Melanie Adkins
  166. Go Tell Bully Brady – Mona Pease
  167. Valentine Surprise – Abby Wooldridge
  168. Full Of Heart – Allison Burke
  169. Two Little Valentines – Judy Abelove Shemtob
  170. A Change Of Heart – Michaela Almeida
  171. The Mural – Susanne Whitehouse
  172. The Perfect Friend Chip – Cheryl Simon
  173. Sloth’s Original Valentine – Judy Sobanski
  174. Be My Fred – Lisa Furness
  175. Cupid’s Confidence – Amy Leskowski
  176. The Flower Code – Ashlee Hashman
  177. A Valentine For Jake – Andrew Fairchild
  178. Cardi V – Alicia Meyers
  179. The Heart Of The Matter – Sarah Marhevsky
  180. Bear And Fish – A Love Story – Aly Kenna
  181. Valentine Wins – Sara Petersohn
  182. Sweet Breakfast – JC Kelly
  183. ValenTalent Show – Becky Goodman
  184. Marla’s Mistake – Jessica Watts
  185. The Koi That Should Have Been In The Zodiac – MeiLin Chan
  186. Surprise Valentine’s Day Party – Una Belle Townsend
  187. My First Love – Adolfo Gomez-Herrera

1,776 thoughts on “With Prideful Heart – The 7th Annual Valentiny Contest Is HERE!!!

  1. Bevin Rolfs Spencer says:

    By, Bevin Rolfs Spencer
    213 words

    Mouse told Mole, “I want to find a Valentine for Mama.”
    But where?
    Mole sniffed. “When I need an idea I follow my nose.”
    Mouse followed Mole. And Mole followed her nose, until it bumped into a stream. “There’s something sweet in the meadow.”
    “Snowdrop flowers!” Mouse cried. “That smells like a Valentine!” To reach the meadow he had to cross the stream.
    But who could help?
    “Hop on my back!” Offered Frog.
    Mouse picked a perfect bouquet until the shadows grew dark. “ I need to get home before Valentine’s Day is over!”
    But how?
    “Hold onto my wing,” said Bird.
    A strong wind blew and howled.
    Every BOUNCE, a petal broke free.
    Every BUMP, a petal blew away.
    When Mouse got home, he held only stems. “This is not a Valentine!”
    Could Spider help?
    But Spider was busy spinning her web. “An idea might be right under your nose,” she said.
    Mouse looked up at Spider’s web. He looked down at the flower stems. And an idea formed. Mouse twisted the stems over and under, into a new shape.
    “A heart!” said Mama. “Where did you find such a Valentine?”
    Mouse patted his chest and his own heart swelled with pride. “It was under my nose all along.”

  2. gayleckrause says:

    My Daddy’s Valentine
    by Gayle Krause

    word count 115

    Chloe gathered her art supplies.
    She cut red stripes.
    Then white ones.
    She pressed sticky stars on a blue square.
    Then Chloe glued the red and white stripes together and pasted the blue square in the corner.
    When the flag was finished, she glued the whole thing to a big red heart.
    Chloe called her mother. “Mommy, could you send this Valentine to the war?”
    Her mom’s eyes teared up.
    The Valentine read:
    Dear Daddy,
    I miss you. Put this under your pillow so you can see me in your dreams.
    Love, your daughter,

    P.S. I’m proud that you keep the world safe for Mommy and me.

  3. montaukdeb says:

    Proud Valentine’s Day
    Deborah Hunt
    214 Words

    Rose thought about Valentine’s Day. It was fun to open cards and get
    candy but the popular kids got the most and the unpopular kids got the least and
    the ones in the middle like her got some.
    “Mrs. Heart, can we do something different this year for Valentine’s Day?”
    “Do you want to have heart-shaped cookies instead of cupcakes?” Mrs. Heart
    “No, I want us to bring all those things to the kids who live in the homeless
    Mrs. Heart smiled. “That’s a nice idea.”
    “Can you ask Principal Lovelace?” Rose asked
    Mrs. Heart nodded. After lunch she told Rose she could ask the kids.
    Rose shared her idea. Some of them nodded but others frowned.
    Rose continued. “Don’t you want to help others and feel proud?”
    One of the kids snickered. “I’ll feel proud when I’m eating chocolate.”
    “I’m going to give all of my Valentine’s gifts away. Will anyone join
    me?” Rose pleaded.
    Three kids raised their hands. One was the least popular, the other was
    the most popular and, the third was the one in the middle. One by one the
    rest of the kids raised their hands, even the snickering kid.
    Mrs. Heart beamed. “Class, I am so very proud of you!”

  4. chardixon47 says:

    By Charlotte Dixon
    WC 211

    Annie B. Bear fluffed her orange fur. She squeezed between stuffed red bears.
    When the store opened, shoppers grabbed red bears, red hearts, and red ribbons.
    What about me?
    That night, Annie B. Bear slumped.
    Before she fell asleep, she whispered, “Someone will want me.”
    The following day, shoppers grabbed red bears, red hearts, and red ribbons—AGAIN!
    When moonlight streamed through windows, Annie B. Bear shuffled down aisles.
    She spotted a large banner: VALENTINE’S DAY SALE!
    “Hmmm . . . what’s a Valentine?”
    She strolled past red pajamas, red sox, and red underwear.
    “Who’s there?”
    “Over here,” said a small voice.
    Annie B. Bear crept along the aisle until . . .
    she spied something on the floor.
    “What are you?” she asked.
    “I’m a Valentine,” sobbed a crushed heart. “Will you help me?”
    Annie B. Bear picked up Valentine.
    “Your stuffing is lopsided,” she said. “I can fix that.”
    “Thank you,” said Valentine.
    “Would you like to be my Valentine?” asked Annie B. Bear.
    The next day, Annie B. Bear propped Valentine beside her,
    and smiled proudly.
    Red bears, red hearts, and red ribbons flew off the shelves—AGAIN!
    Until . . .
    “Mommy! I want the bear with the big red heart.”
    “Valentine, I think someone is stuck on us,” proclaimed Annie B. Bear.

  5. cinzialverde says:

    By Cindy Greene
    Word Count: 202

    “Oh no,” Ricardo muttered
    when he heard the teacher say,
    “Please cut some hearts for Valentines –
    we’ll make your cards today.”

    No matter what Ricardo tried,
    he couldn’t cut a heart.
    And worse, he thought to ask for help,
    would make him look “not smart.”

    He wrangled scissors, tried a pen;
    he couldn’t help but groan.
    ‘Most every heart looked like a tooth,
    or mangled ice cream cone.

    The other children looked relaxed,
    like cutting heats was fun.
    Ricardo frowned and asked himself,
    “Why can’t I cut just one?”

    Ricardo saw a stack of hearts,
    symmetrical and sleek.
    He asked his neighbor, “Are they yours?
    Please teach me your technique!”

    Ricardo learned the method
    which was “Breathe and use the fold;
    enjoy and try your best –
    just effort matters when all’s told.”

    Ricardo tried and sure enough,
    his hearts improved a bit.
    But more important, he had fun,
    and didn’t want to quit.

    He helped some others with their hearts,
    and helping felt real great.
    He thought “It’s good to ask for help.
    I shouldn’t hesitate!

    I’m proud I learned that help is fine,
    Not asking’s a mistake.
    And making better hearts
    Is just the icing on the cake!”

  6. vgraboski61gmailcom says:

    By Vasilia Graboski Wordcount 214

    Kayleigh’s real love was reading mysteries. But that would have to wait. The classroom valentine party had started! She slammed her book shut and hurried to the treat table.
    “Hannah, I can’t wait to give you your valentine!”
    “Me either.”
    “Look!” pointed Kayleigh.

    “GREEN M & M’s mixed with the red and pink ones?” said Kayleigh. “NOT very valentiny!”
    Hannah shrugged. “C’mon, let’s make our mailboxes!”

    Kayleigh gasped as she shuffled through the paper.
    How strange. Only GREEN paper.
    “Green mailboxes are NOT very valentiny,” grumbled Kayleigh.

    “Kayleigh, I didn’t get your valentine.”
    Kayleigh’s eyes grew wide.
    GREEN M & M’s, GREEN paper and now, a MISSING VALENTINE.
    Hmm. I have a suspect. Now, to set a trap!

    Dear Valentine Villain,
    We’re sorry if you feel left out. This is NOT your holiday!
    But, I made a Valentine for you. Love, Kayleigh
    Kayleigh made a trail of green M & M’s leading to the valentine. When she returned …

    …the villain’s valentine was gone. In it’s place was THE MISSING VALENTINE.
    And …

    a Four-leaf clover!
    “AH-HA!” shouted Kayleigh.

    “Kayleigh solved the mystery of the valentine shenanigans. Hip-Hip Hooray!” Hannah announced.
    Kayleigh stood tall and flashed a smile. “Solving mysteries is even more fun than reading them!”

  7. Erika says:

    You Make Me So Proud
    By: Erika Romero
    Word Count: 130

    It makes me so proud when you…
    dance to the beat,
    spin round and round,
    and fly through the air.

    Because of you,
    Mami laughs and laughs.

    It makes me so proud when you…
    gather your toys,
    stack your books,
    and tidy your bed.

    Because of you,
    Papi has extra time for cuddles.

    It makes me so proud when you…
    pick special flowers,
    draw lovely hearts,
    and hug Abuela tight.

    Because of you,
    her whole day is full of love.

    It makes me so proud when you…
    tie your shoes tight,
    stretch your arms and legs,
    and race Abuelo to the finish line.

    Because of you,
    his whole day feels bright.

    I’m your big sister
    and on this Valentine’s Day
    I want you to know…

    You Make Me So Proud.

  8. elseed32 says:

    I Am Proud To Be Your Friend
    By: Kerry Porter
    Corey was in fourth grade, and his class Valentine’s Day party was a few days away. He
    went right to work. He cut out a red heart, glued the edges with silver glitter, and wrote a message for his best friend in purple marker.
    In class, his best friend Kloe sat in front of him, he helped her with school work. At recess, instead of playing ball with the guys, he hung around Kloe. Kloe showed him the world from her point of view. The wonder in the sky, the beauty in a sparkling rock, how unique beads of dew on a spider’s web can be. How fun it was to watch the rain with her! Kloe showed him things he hadn’t seen before.
    The day finally arrived! Valentines Day! Corey passed out his valentines to the class. He saved the best for last. He cheerfully walked over to Kloe and handed her his hand-made valentine. Her brown eyes twinkled as she read words in purple marker, “I am proud to be your friend.” She smiled in her special way at him. He knew she liked her valentine. Kloe has an extra chromosome, she can see the beauty in our awesome and wondrous world. Corey was proud that she shared this world with him.

  9. Brigid Finucane says:

    Love Somebody
    By Brigid Finucane
    Word count: 212

    As I was strumming down the street
    A red breast robin I chanced to meet,
    Singing “Love somebody, yes, I do.
    Love somebody, but I won’t say who!”

    Two is better than only one.
    Let’s be a duo and have some fun!

    On the corner in the early morn
    A dapper dog blew a golden horn.
    “Love somebody, yes I do.
    Love somebody, but I won’t say who!”

    Three is better than two or one,
    Let’s be a trio and have some fun.

    And on a bench, with a zing zang zin
    A dusty donkey bowed a violin.
    “Love somebody yes, I do.
    Love somebody, but I won’t say who!”

    Four is better than three, two, one.
    Let’s be a quartet and have some fun!

    And on we plunked and plinked so sweet
    The street soon filled with dancing feet.
    And others came to play along
    And add their voices to our song.

    “Love somebody, yes I do.
    Love somebody, but I won’t say who!”

    There never was a day so fine
    In honor of St. Valentine.
    And all because we sang our song,
    And others came to sing along.

    Love somebody, yes I do!
    Love somebody, yes I do!
    Love somebody, yes I do!
    Love somebody, and it’s you, you, YOU!

  10. setwiggs says:

    Marcus Is Not an Elephant: How a Woolly Mammoth Makes a Friend
    by Susan Schwartz Twiggs.
    211 Words

    More than anything Marcus wants a friend.
    “You are not an elephant and I know because I’m an elephant prince,” Jenko said. “You don’t look like us. What are you, Marcus?”
    No one has ever told him. Not until today.
    “I’m just like you,” Marcus said. Still, he wonders.
    He has longer tusks and his ears are smaller. He barely fits in his desk chair.
    “This is Marcus’ chair, everyone. Please leave this for him,” his teacher said.
    Jenko smirks and the other elephants laugh.
    Valentine’s Day will be here soon, Marcus thinks. He’ll create a Valentine for everyone, even Jenko. Marcus cuts red hearts. He pastes them on white cards. He prints on each card:
    The big day arrives. Marcus passes out his valentines. Each with a sweet surprise.
    Jenko rips the envelope, glances, and throws his away. So do the others.
    Marcus bows his head to hide his tears.
    Someone places a valentine under his tusk.
    He sneaks a peek.
    He opens the envelope, careful not to tear the card. Inside is a note:
    To Marcus
    Don’t ever change.
    I like you just the way you are.
    Marcus walks over to Alice. “Want to play?”
    She nods and reaches for his tail.

  11. Liz Kehrli says:

    Purple Lace- 214 words
    By Liz Kehrli

    Felicia Fairy tottered. Being Cupid’s top assistant on Valentine’s Day was tough. If she didn’t finish work on time, she would not receive new lace for her satin wings.
    She whizzed over to Miss Cardiac’s class for her last assignment- James and Kaitlin. She quietly hovered over them and watched.
    “H-hello, Kaitlin,” stuttered James, staring down at his feet.
    “Hi,” said Kaitlin, turning away.
    Felicia sighed. These two were best friends until 2nd grade started. Then they stopped playing together and an invisible wall had formed between them. Felicia had to break it down.
    Miss Cardiac asked the class to pair up for spelling practice. Kaitlin peeked at James.
    He grabbed the closest boy.
    Felicia’s wings sagged. How could she get them back together? She was out of arrows, so she’d have to be creative.
    At recess, when James walked by Kaitlin, Felicia made her move.
    She took a deep breath, and-
    She blew her best fairy dust on them.
    “Hey, what’s this leather pouch?” asked James, reaching down. “Marbles!”
    “Ooh- our favorite game last summer,” said Kaitlin.
    “You… wanna play?”
    “Sure… if you do.” Kaitlin blushed.
    “Of course!” James smiled.
    Felicia beamed with pride, wings fluttering. Tonight, she’d ask Cupid to line her wings with purple lace, to match her eyes.

  12. kathalsey says:

    ​​Puppy Love
    Kathy Halsey
    Word Count: 176

    Nana and Pops’ early Valentine for Rosie was wiggly, warm, and furry –
    a sweet Corgi named Scrappy.
    Rosie wanted a lapdog – a cuddler and snuggler.
    But Scrappy was
    WAAAY too jumpy,
    WAAAY too barky,
    and not at all a “lap-py.”
    Pops, pup, and Nana plotted.. When Rosie and Nana rode bikes in the park, Pops met a trainer.
    Over time, Scrappy became tamer with the flick of a clicker. He sat for ear rubs. He nuzzled noses. He curled up in Pops’ lap – proud, no longer loud or squiggly.
    On February 14, Nana and Pops invited Rosie and Scrappy to the park for a Valentine treat.
    As Rosie and Scrappy bounded into view, Pops click-clicked.
    Scrappy slowed and lick-licked Rosie’s hand.
    Click-click. Scrappy sat on the bench.
    Rosie sat in surprise.
    Nana and Pops handed Rosie a red clicker.
    “My valentine????”
    “Just click.” Pops chuckled and winked at Rosie and Nana.
    Rosie clicked. Scrappy wiggled onto Rosie’s lap and cuddled.
    “My very own lapdog,” Rosie cried.
    Scrappy had never been prouder. His very own snuggly girl!

  13. danielleshark says:

    Valentine’s Day Booty
    Danielle Sharkan

    WC: 214

    The mice at Southern Hills Academy were among the fastest and fiercest in the field.

    They outran feisty foxes, hungry hawks, and sneaky snakes.

    Marvin wasn’t a quick climber like Clarissa, or a high jumper like Harry, or a fast dasher like


    But he was clever and determined to help his team win this year’s Valentine’s Day Dash.

    When Professor Mousewhiskers announced the course, Marvin’s ears perked up.

    They would cross Slippery Creek,
    scamper through Northwest Field,
    and sneak into Anderson Farm.

    They would circumvent snappy mouse traps,
    sneak by their sassy pomeranian Pam,
    and blast past Mrs. Anderson’s broom…to the pantry.

    Whichever team brought back the biggest booty would win.

    Marvin glanced at the farm and grinned.

    “Let the Valentine’s Day Dash begin!”

    The mice swam across Slippery Creek, sped through Northwest Field, and snuck into Anderson Farm.

    But Marvin lagged behind.

    Clarissa and Harry leaped around traps, while Asher sprinted past Pam. They blew through the broom and made it to the pantry.

    But Marvin lagged behind.

    The mice grabbed savory spoils and scurried toward the school.

    But where was Marvin?

    Up ahead, Marvin hitched a ride on his old pal Pam, and proudly proved to Professor Mousewhiskers that his team had brought back the biggest booty of all.


  14. CatherineBrewer says:

    By Catherine Brewer
    205 words

    I’m red like an apple or
    flamingo pink some say,
    people yell “I Love You!”
    But it’s never towards my way.

    Just a pointy sharp end
    indented curved in the center,
    such a silly shape I am
    And to whom was my inventor?

    Broken hearted shattered
    and I simply can’t compare
    to a circle, triangle,
    octagon or a square.

    Oh, February’s here!
    Such a dreadful time of year.
    Full of people’s fingerprints
    Now, I’m drowning in despair.

    Cupid shoots an arrow
    at the center of my chest.
    Happy Valentine’s Day!
    But I’m simply not impressed.

    Wait a second…
    Who are you?
    Am I being watched?
    Unbeknownst to me your presence
    has me quite a bit shocked.

    Now I’m blushing feeling awkward
    cause your listening to me
    but feeling valued and uplifted
    This is just what I need.

    I’m a symbol of love.
    It’s bestowed on me.
    No more wishing I am more than
    what I’m meant to be.

    Here’s the loudest
    and the proudest shape on 2/14.
    Standing tall in the cards,
    holding chocolates in me.

    Sent through the mail
    across far away seas,
    significantly boastful
    with swagger indeed.

    Open the envelope,
    it’s the one and only me
    Will you be my Valentine’s?
    Love, Wholeheartedly

  15. Kathy Crable says:

    Valentine Barks
    by: Kathy Crable
    On the morning of February 14th, there was a bark at the door. It was love at first sight!
    “Can we keep her?” I begged
    “No,” Mom said, “someone might be looking for her.”
    Already I felt sad and a little like crying.
    “I’ll post her picture on Facebook,” Grandma smiled.
    “Good idea!” Dad said.
    I didn’t think so.
    “I’ll call the vet and the Humane Society,” Mom volunteered.
    I snuggled up closer to the sweet little dog. I already loved her but maybe someone else did too. “I can make Lost Dog posters to hang up at the grocery store and the library.”
    Dad gave me a hug.
    We called her Dog and fed her lots of treats. We played fetch and snuggled and took walks. We waited, long day by long day for someone to call or text or show up at the door to claim her.
    Two weeks went by and Dad surprised me by saying, “we’re proud of the way you’ve done the right thing by trying to find Dog’s family. Now that we know she doesn’t have one, we think you should give her a name so she can join ours.”
    “Valentine!” I said as I rubbed noses with my new Forever Friend. “Her name is Valentine!”
    (212 words)

  16. catpal1120 says:

    OOG LOVE ROCK by Katie Palazzola

    206 Words

    One Valentine’s Day, Cupid set out to help Oog the Caveman find love.

    But this was long, long ago, and Cupid was still getting the hang of his bow. He didn’t always hit his target…

    His arrow missed Ugga.

    It whizzed by Unk.

    It flew over Froon.

    But then, it struck!

    A boulder.


    Oog made Valentines for Rock out of moss and bark.

    He sang love songs to Rock.

    He carried Rock everywhere. “Oog tired!” (Rock was very heavy!)

    When spring came, it was time to move to a new cave, far away. Too far for Oog to carry Rock.

    But Oog would not leave his beloved Rock behind.

    He pressed his shoulder against Rock.

    “Oog push!”

    But Rock wouldn’t budge.

    He made a rope and tied it around Rock.

    “Oog pull!”

    But the rope wasn’t strong enough.


    Oog flipped Rock end over end, but it made him go very,



    “Oog never get there!”

    Then Oog had an idea.

    He chipped and chopped, scraped and smoothed, until…

    “Rock roll!”

    Oog had invented the wheel!

    “Oog proud.”

    Cupid was proud too. He might not have been aiming at that boulder, but Oog and Rock were the perfect match.

    “Oog love Rock.”

  17. Colleen Owen Murphy says:


    by Colleen Murphy
    wc: 151 words

    I aced the classes from the start–
    the first, the most important part
    of picking out the hopeful heart.

    Then after months of target training
    this cool dude was still remaining
    number one, with no one gaining.

    WIth Valentine’s the final test
    and chance to put my rank to rest,
    I honed in on a heart’s request.

    I hovered and I braced my bow,
    while basking in success’s glow
    “Oops!” I let the arrow go.

    “I launched before I looked,” I said.
    “I drew the arrow made of lead
    and struck the man with hate instead.”

    Thank goodness my instructor came
    to fix the lovelorn fellow’s flame
    and right my wrong (but not my shame).

    So back I went to Cupid classes
    mixing in among the masses
    less concerned with stats than passes

    knowing I would not relent
    until I cleared the last event
    and earned my right to represent.

  18. Julianna (@JuliannaHelt) says:

    Allie’s Biggest Heart
    by Julianna Helt
    Words 177

    Sam stomps through the door.
    “Grrr!” He growls.
    Allie puts her arm around him.
    “What’s wrong, Sam?” she asks.
    “Leave me alone!” Sam shouts and slams his bedroom door.
    Allie frowns. She hates seeing Sam upset.
    She gets an idea.
    She cuts and colors.
    She tapes and glitters.
    She makes Sam’s slammed-shut door a display of love.
    Allie beams at her creation of hearts.
    All colors and sizes decorate the door with special messages for Sam.
    “Sam’s the best!”
    “Sam makes me smile.”
    “Sam and Allie are Best Friends.”
    Allie’s biggest heart says,
    “Allie Loves Sam This Much!”
    She tiptoes away and waits.
    She hears the creak of Sam’s door.
    Then a gasp and squeal from her little brother.
    He bursts into her room and hugs her tight.
    Allie knows his anger has melted away.
    Her smile as big as her biggest heart.
    “Thank you, Allie,” Sam says.
    She squeezes him back.
    “I love you this much too!” Sam says stretching his arms as a big as Allie’s biggest heart.
    Allie’s smile grows even bigger.

  19. Blair Moore says:

    Posted by Blair Moore. Written by daughter Sophia Moore, age 10
    214 Words

    Hey, kid! Over here…

    It’s me, Detective Spot. I know—odd name for a Zebra.

    We’ve got a situation. People aren’t really into Valentines anymore. Why?

    Because there’s not a good Valentine’s day “mascot.”

    A naked baby that flies around shooting arrows? Puh-lease!

    We can do better. I need your help finding a replacement for Cupid.

    Maybe if you shake the page we’ll find a clue of who could do the job.

    Look, footprints! llama footprints? (Illus. Note:They are bear prints)
    Let’s follow them…

    Aha! Stuffing!

    And what’s that noise—Crying?

    Maybe this blubbering bear will make a good Valentine’s Day mascot.

    Hey bear, we’re looking for a replacement for cupid. Interested?

    “Don’t look at me!”

    Come on out. I don’t bite…

    “Trust me, I’m unbearable.”

    Oh, poor thing! You have a rip.

    “I’m Fuchsia. I live down here alone. Whenever someone sees me, my tear scares them off.”

    That makes no sense! It’s just a little rip. I could easily patch you up.

    “You’d do that for me?”

    It would be my pleasure. Now, let’s get you fixed up.

    Would you like me to sew on this heart for you to hold?


    “Wow, I look very Valentiny!”

    Now about that cupid job?

    “It would be my honor!”

    Another case solved for Detective Spot.

  20. claireannette1 says:

    Hi Susanna, I hope everything is okay with your family. I wrote this little story and tried to add it but the post comment button wouldn’t work for me. I was number 132. Thanks for hosting this fun event.

    THE VALENTINE SURPRISE By Claire Noland 196-words

    Marti was making valentines for his classmates. And not just any old valentines, but super special valentines. He had everything he needed: Eggs, flour, sugar, butter, and his secret ingredient, Peppermints! Marti put on his apron and set to work. He crushed, poured, stirred, and rolled. Then he cut the dough into heart shapes and popped them in the oven. The kitchen filled with the delicious smell of baking cookies. “Ding.” After the cookies cooled, he frosted and carefully wrote each friend’s name on one. “Perfect!” he said proudly. He gently placed them in a box. He could hardly wait to pass them out. On Valentine’s Day, Marti rushed into his classroom, but he didn’t pay attention. “Oops!” He tripped over a chair and dropped the box. He looked inside and saw broken cookie pieces. Marti slumped in a seat and tried not to cry. The children gathered around him. “Look,” said Ellie, putting two pieces together. “Here’s my name!” “I found my name, too,” said Maya. One by one, the children put their heart cookies together. “I planned to bring cookies,” said Marti. “But it looks like I brought delicious puzzles instead. Happy Valentine’s Day!”

    On Thu, Feb 10, 2022 at 9:03 PM Susanna Leonard Hill wrote:

    > Susanna Leonard Hill posted: ” [For those trying to post, you must click > on the Blog Post Title to get on the blog post page and access the > comments] Roses are red Violets are blue Valentinies rock And so do YOU! > Whether your characters are filled with pride and joy, pu” >

  21. Tara Cerven says:

    by Tara Knox Cerven
    Word Count: 171

    Alessandra’s shoulders slumped as she looked at all the Valentines.

    Joey’s sparkled with its elegant red edges.

    Evie’s boasted a perfectly shaped shimmery heart.

    Auggie’s shiny L-O-V-E leaped right off the page.

    Mine is…boring, Alessandra thought.

    Nothing sparkled, shimmered, or shined.

    I’m not good at drawing OR decorating. Maybe when I’m six my fingers will work better.

    A classmate giggled.

    Are they laughing at me?

    With burning cheeks, Alessandra slipped the fuzzy felt creation into her backpack.

    I did my best, she sighed.

    The next morning the scent of strawberry stuffed pancakes filled the air.

    Valentine’s Day!

    Scrambling from bed, Alessandra spotted a funny lump in her backpack.

    Reaching in, she felt something soft and furry.


    Curled into a teensy weensy ball the kitten slept soundly…

    nestled right on top of Alessandra’s Valentine!

    It was just the right size…

    warm enough for snuggling…

    soft enough for cuddling.

    Alessandra beamed with pride.

    “My Valentine is perfect. I just didn’t know it would be purrfect.”

    She giggled.

    “Happy Valentine’s Day, Romeo!”

  22. Susanna Leonard Hill says:



    By Lindsay Moretti

    WC: 214

    Lottie finished her valentines as snowflakes fell softly on her window. She looked outside and watched Mr. Weatherly amble to his mailbox, stumbling a few times in the deepening snow. Lottie grimaced. She never talked to her lonely old neighbor.

    “Hmm…”, thought Lottie.

    When Lottie finished her valentines, she made an extra and tucked it away. Then she bundled up to go outside and grabbed her shovel. She began shoveling Mr. Weatherly’s sidewalk.

    Looking up to find Mr. Weatherly sitting by his window, she waved.

    He did not wave back.

    The next day, it snowed again. Lottie made sure to shovel Mr. Weatherly’s sidewalk before he went to get his mail. This time she built a snowman in his front yard, too.

    Mr. Weatherly sat by his window.

    Lottie waved.

    He did not wave back.

    The next day was Valentine’s Day. Lottie baked snickerdoodle cookies. She walked next door with a Valentine card and cookies, leaving them on Mr. Weatherly’s front step.

    She watched from her window when Mr. Weatherly went to get his mail. He found the goodies and read the Valentine card.

    He slowly smiled.

    Lottie thought she saw something glisten down his cheek. He looked toward Lottie’s window.

    He waved!

    Lottie smiled and waved back, proud she made a new friend.

  23. Susanna Leonard Hill says:


    A Proud Mum

    Ayla was excited, Valentines Day.
    Mummy to was having a Birthday
    Ayla drew hearts, and stars so gay
    With lots of crayons she wrote away

    Happy Birthday Mummy.
    You are a beautiful Mummy.
    I love you so much Mummy
    You are my special Valentine Mummy

    Daddy helped with all the long words.
    The card was now ready full of words
    A red envelope licked and sealed
    She hid it, safely her heart now filled

    Before bed she checked to see
    Is the card safe for Mummy to see?
    But no card anywhere to see
    She cried and wept,so sad to see

    Daddy consoled,made another card
    Not the same as one she worked so hard
    Ayla clasped her hands praying hard
    Fretful sleep her night was marred

    On Valentines Monday Mummy came in
    ‘Ayla, look a red envelope shall we look in?
    They curled up in bed and read it out loud
    Ayla smiled,glad the card was found

    What a beautiful card Ayla I am so proud
    The hearts are colourful and stars around
    I am so proud that you made it for me
    You are my special Valentine you and me

    Mum had found the card as she came in
    The card had slipped and vanished thin
    Only to appear right by her bed unseen
    Hard work and love has magic unseen

  24. Susanna Leonard Hill says:


    Valentine’s Day at Sweet Pig’s
    Patricia Corcoran
    205 words

    “Going to be a busy day!” Sweet Pig said as he checked his bakery. “I’ve got plenty of sugar tarts, marshmallow cookies, and cherry-berry muffins.”

    The line had already formed outside. He could see Miss Mallowhog’s students anxiously waiting to pick up her order.

    “Happy hearts day!”

    “We want cherry-berries!” shouted the little hogs.

    “Now calm down, you will get yours.” He glanced at Mary Veronica Francine Louise who was right behind them. Oh, no, he thought, she can never decide what she wants and she will hold up the line.

    Mary Veronica Francine Louise could not decide on anything. She stepped to the counter and stared. She looked from one item to another.

    Finally Sweet Pig chose a cherry-berry muffin, a sugar tart, three cookie pops, and a crunchy heart candy. He handed the box to her.
    She looked confused as she glanced inside the box.

    “I’ve made it easy so you don’t have to choose,” he said.

    “Oh, but I do,” Mary Veronica Francine Louise said lifting her face up.

    “I choose the cherry-berry and candy but NOT the tart and cookie pops,” she said proudly. She left them on the counter and turned to go, grinning with pride at her sweet choice!

  25. Susanna Leonard Hill says:


    Poppy’s gift by Melanie Adkins

    Poppy wanted a Valentine just like her older sister. Every year, Poppy looked in the mailbox, but she never received anything.

    Poppy thought about what made her sister special. Her sister was kind to her friends, she helped people and she always had a smile for everyone.

    Poppy wondered whether she could do something special that meant she might be someone’s Valentine this year. Poppy was too proud to ask her sister for ideas. She knew she had to solve her love puzzle herself.

    Poppy thought about her sister. She was kind first. That’s it!, thought Poppy, you need to give love to receive it. Poppy didn’t want her token of love to be like anyone else’s so she decided to make it herself from the heart.

    Poppy found some paper and began folding. She thought hard about love while she folded and before long she had created an original folded heart. Poppy smiled. Now, she had to decide who would receive her love.

    Poppy wished she was more like her sister and, at that moment, she knew the solution to the problem. Poppy needed to give her sister her love. The happiness that Poppy felt by sharing her love made her the ideal Valentine. Poppy had given love and now she received it.

    Words – 214

  26. Susanna Leonard Hill says:


    Go Tell Bully Brady
    Mona Pease 214 words

    Kids built forts in every corner of the playground except one. Bully Brady stood there, hands in his pockets looking mean. No one dared tell him to move so they chose me!
    Fact is, everyone knew I wouldn’t stand up for myself. What they didn’t know was that I felt bullied by them sometimes.
    I walked over to Bully Brady. Instead of asking him to move, I handed him an unmarked envelope.
    “Here’s your Valentine.”
    He grabbed it and grumbled, “Thanks.”
    My friends high-fived.
    I felt lousy inside.
    I didn’t particularly like Bully Brady. He hardly ever spoke and he always looked mean.
    But I shouldn’t have given a Valentine I didn’t make for him. I should have stood my ground. Then I remembered something that might help make things right to him and to myself.
    The next day I blurted out, “I’m going to ask Bully Brady to play.”
    My friends gasped.
    I barely believed it myself. I spoke up.
    I trudged over. “You want to help build a fort?”
    He shook his head.
    “Forgot your gloves? Here, I have an extra pair.”
    Bully Brady actually smiled.
    My friends gawked.
    Then everyone, including Brady, helped build the biggest fort ever.
    I felt good inside especially when I handed him his real Valentine.

  27. Abby Wooldridge (@ANWBooks) says:

    Valentine Surprise
    by Abby Wooldridge
    214 words

    Mia knew how much Mom hated working Saturdays. She was determined to make today special for her–work or not. “Breakfast is served!”

    “Wow!” said Mom. “What a surprise!”

    “I made you lunch, too.” Mia smiled, thinking of the note she’d tucked inside.

    After Mom left for the office Mia went to work doing dishes and tidying the house so they could both relax later.

    When Mom got home, she pulled Mia into a giant hug. “The house looks amazing, honey! And thank you for your sweet note. It was the best Valentine I’ve ever gotten.”

    Mia’s face fell. “Oh no, Mom. I’m so sorry! I forgot all about Valentine’s Day! I didn’t get you anything. No flowers, or chocolates, or—”

    “Mia, stop! You know what? This makes today even more special. You didn’t do any of this stuff because the calendar told you to. You did it because you are kind and thoughtful–all the time! I’m really proud of you.”

    Mia grinned, feeling pretty proud of herself, too. She and Mom spent a special night together pigging out on pizza, playing games, and painting each others’ nails. And the best part? They could do it all again anytime they wanted. Any day could be special–whether the calendar said so or not.

  28. Susanna Leonard Hill says:


    Full of Heart by Allison Burke
    WC 214

    You are yours, and mine,
    Not a once-a-year Valentine.

    You are full of heart.
    You make proud happen and when you do, that proud is all yours.

    Kind of.
    It’s also mine, ours and theirs.

    Your proud can stir curious and crazy crowd reactions.
    It’s remarkable to see.

    It’s visible on the outside and most definitely warms the inside.
    When you are proud. We feel it too. It’s all of ours.

    Proud is so powerful it reaches you from far away.
    Proud is evidenced in a beautiful or a challenging day.
    Proud is captured in under one second and over a lifetime.
    Proud turns into pride.

    Proud is at practices, in pauses, patience and determination,
    In a picture, a word, a gesture or a sound.
    Proud is always saved by someone.
    And when it is we like to share it.

    That is embarrassing.

    Watch for proud because proud feels like a celebration.
    Wear proud because it looks good on you.
    Reach for proud because it is creative and strong.
    Share proud. Make it contagious.

    Pair humble and proud together,
    See what happens?

    Make proud plentiful.
    Hers, his and theirs.

    Stay boisterous, bright and quietly right.
    Stay full of heart.
    Make proud happen because when you do, that proud is all yours.
    And mine.

  29. Judy Abelove Shemtob says:

    Two Little Valentines
    by Judy Abelove Shemtob
    Word Count 214

    A little girl and her mother headed for the end of the hall. They could see a door decorated in pink.

    Lots of children and their parents walked in the same direction.

    “Take my hand, Mommy. I’m not sure I want to go in.”

    “Oh sweetie, it’s going to be fun.” Her mother bent down and adjusted Jessica’s collar.

    Jessica shook her head. “Too many kids.” A tiny tear rolled down her cheek.

    Jessica’s mother took her daughter’s hand. “They probably have great projects to make.”

    “I don’t think so.”

    Her mother put her arm around Jessica. “I’ll go in with you.”

    “Couldn’t you make a fun valentine too, Mom?”

    They were just about to open the door, when a boy she knew from school came out with an art project that he started. Jake carried a pink cardboard heart with red strings that were sewn around the edges.

    “This place is fun, but I need a friend to help me sew some stitches in my heart. My mommy left for her exercise class. Can you be my friend?”

    Jessica looked at her mother. “Are you going to your class?”

    Her mother nodded.

    “Okay, Jake, I’ll be your friend. Let’s go and make fun valentines.”

    “I’m proud of you two valentines,” said Jessica’s mom.

  30. Michaela Almeida (@booksbymichaela) says:

    A CHANGE OF HEART (187 words)
    Michaela Almeida

    Valentine’s Day is Mabel’s least favorite holiday.
    The worst thing about Valentine’s Day…
    Conversation hearts.
    These hearts were bad enough without posters and stickers of them spread all over school.
    “They’re too lovey-dovey,” Mabel rolled her eyes.
    “Agreed. Let’s do something about it,” said Lev.
    “I’ve already got a plan!” Mabel smirked.
    She filled him in, and they got right to work making a poster.
    Conversation hearts are gushy and mushy!
    Let go of the old sayings and make way for…
    Mindful hearts!
    Take some hearts, write your best encouraging sayings, and drop them in the box.
    The contest created a flurry.
    When they checked the box after school it was overflowing.
    Mabel high-fived Lev.
    “Let’s do this!”
    They pulled the mushy, gushy hearts off the walls and replaced them with the new hearts.
    The next day, students and teachers crowded the hallways, reading the hearts aloud.
    BE YOU
    “Now that’s a conversation!” said Lev.
    Mabel beamed.
    Maybe Valentine’s Day isn’t so bad after all, she thought.

  31. Susanne Whitehouse (@WhitehouseSus) says:

    The Mural
    By Susanne Whitehouse
    214 Words

    Gwendolyn had a big idea. A huge idea. An idea so enormous that when complete, it would stretch 25 feet high and 200 feet long. Gwendolyn wanted to cover the side of her town’s abandoned candy factory with a painted mural. She had sketched out her plan and gotten approval from Town Council. Her “Bringing Hearts Together” mural idea was bursting with colorful dancing hearts. “What better day to unveil my completed mural than Valentine’s Day?” thought Gwendolyn.
    But with only a week before the holiday, she had exhausted her efforts to find a painter. When it came to the giant task of a 5000 square foot painting, nobody in town had time.
    Then Gwendolyn had bigger idea. A huger idea. An even more enormous idea that would bring the busy town together AND get her mural completed. She cut her sketch into tiny pieces and put them in separate envelopes. Gwendolyn mailed the pieces to each person in town along with instructions to meet in front of the old warehouse on February 14th with a paint brush.
    That Valentine’s Day, the mural was finished in record time with everyone adding a small portion to the gigantic puzzle. Admiring the finished product, Gwendolyn said, “Now THIS is something we can ALL be proud of.”

  32. Cheryl Simon (@cmsimon18) says:

    By Cheryl Simon
    212 words

    Chocolate Chip was the proudest ingredient in the bakery.

    After all,

    he was the sweetest,

    the most popular,

    and he could blend with anyone.

    Folding into cookies, brownies, cakes…

    life was sweeter with Chocolate Chip.

    Chip was busy baking up a plan for Valentine’s Day.

    “I’ve got everything I knead for a delicious Valentine’s treat.” beamed Chip.

    Suddenly, the bakery door burst open.

    “Hi. I’m Chip,” said Potato Chip

    “What are you doing here?” cried Chocolate Chip

    “I didn’t mean to stir up trouble. I’m here for the new Valentine’s recipe.”

    “Well, I don’t mean to sound salty but I’m the only Chip in town,” said Chocolate Chip.

    Mrs.Baker appeared “Hi Potato Chip. I’m excited to add you to the mix.”

    Chocolate Chip crumbled, “How can you take the whisk? Everyone loves sweet treats on Valentine’s Day.”

    Mrs Sugar replied, “I yam sure you will love the salty and sweet combination.”

    “I don’t like to blend the rules but that sounds interesting,” said
    Chocolate Chip.

    Mrs. Sugar reassured him, “You know I’ll never dessert you.”

    Chocolate Chip decided to dough with it.

    Sometimes you need to mix it up to make the world a butter place, he thought.

    A new friend chip was born and the chips couldn’t have been prouder.

  33. Judy Sobanski says:

    Sloth’s Original Valentine
    By Judy Sobanski (190 words)

    Sloth tried to make a valentine.
    One that was his own design.
    To give a special She-Sloth friend,
    so she would fully comprehend,
    how much he cared and truly loved her so.

    He carved the letters “B” and “E”
    in the bark of his cecropia tree.
    He started this in late July.
    Which might cause one to ponder, why?
    Well, sloths move very…very…very…slow.

    One day a Marmoset observed,
    “You’ll never finish all those words.”
    Be My Valentine’s a lot
    to carve inside that special spot.
    And it’s already February third!”

    “Guess I’ll put on my thinking cap,”
    said Sloth. “And take a little nap.”
    He dozed away and when he woke,
    that ever, clever, sly slowpoke,
    solved the problem of too many words!

    Ten more days he plugged away,
    at least an hour every day,
    using tons of elbow grease,
    to finish up his masterpiece!
    At last he had his special valentine!

    When She-Sloth crept up in the tree,
    Sloth said, “This is a gift from me.
    I’m very proud, I’m sure it shows…
    I made it with my own six toes!”
    Inside a heart he’d carved TWO words: BE MINE!

  34. Lisa L Furness says:

    by Lisa Furness
    213 words

    On Valentine’s Day, Emily spent all day making sure everything was perfect for her party.
    Decorations, check.
    Snacks, check.
    Games, check.
    Handmade card, check.
    When her friends arrived, they put their valentines into the box along with Emily’s.
    One by one, the cards were handed out.
    Each guest read aloud the festive messages.
    They said,
    “Luv Ya Lotz”
    “Crazy 4 U”
    “Sweetie Pie”
    “Cuddle Bug”
    Emily picked one that read, “U Rock”.
    Finally, her card was the last one left in the box. She couldn’t wait for it to be revealed!
    They picked up her card and read aloud,
    “Be My Fred”.
    “Who’s Fred?” said one.
    “Did you invite Fred?” said another.
    Emily’s face turned beet red. She looked down at her feet hoping no one would notice.
    She was so busy she had forgotten the “i” and “n” in friend!
    Emily grabbed her card and headed for the trash.
    “I wish I never put this card in the box.”
    “But Emily, we think your valentine is the best,” they said.
    “I meant for it to say “friend”.
    “We’re glad you’re our friend! And you give the best parties!”
    Pleased her friends didn’t care about her mistake,
    Emily lifted up her chin and said,
    “Thank you all. I do have the best freds!”

  35. Amy Leskowski says:

    Cupid’s Confidence
    By Amy Leskowski (140 words)

    My cherub classmates look my way.
    I hear them whisper “Cupid … .”
    They laugh at something I’ve said wrong.
    “That archer sure is—”


    Sure, numbers jumble in my mind
    because my gears are turning.
    I know, though, I’m a gifted chum.
    Mistakes mean I’m still learning.

    In basketball, my shot gets blocked.
    I hear some seraphs snort.
    And when my next one nicks the net,
    they reason, “Cu’s too—”


    So what if I can’t alley-oop
    and rebounds find me last?
    My layup’s featherlight and suave.
    My breakaway is fast!

    If teardrops drip, their eyebrows raise.
    (I cry when sad AND happy.)
    “Wah-wah,” they mock.
    “Boo-hoo,” they squawk.
    “Oh, Cupid, you’re too—”


    They might not fathom feelings now,
    but that’s about to change.
    My arrow’s primed for Valentine’s.
    I’ll keep their hearts in range.

  36. ashleehashman says:

    The Flower Code
    By Ashlee Hashman
    213 Words

    Everyone in Ellie’s class was bringing a special treat to share for Valentine’s Day.

    But Ellie had nothing to give…until now.

    “A long time ago, people used flowers to send messages,” said Grandma.

    Ellie shushed her worried thoughts.

    A secret flower code? That’s perfect!

    She breathed in the bouquet of Grandma’s flower shop.

    “Bluebells for kindness.
    Pink rose for happiness.
    Iris for respect.
    Yellow rose for friendship.”

    Grandma filled Ellie’s arms with gifts.

    All night, Ellie and Grandma decorated a poster to help her classmates decode their flower message.

    At school, Ellie taped her poster to the whiteboard.

    Her stomach bubbled. What will they think of my gifts?

    She shyly passed out a flower to each person.

    Some smiled. Some looked confused.

    “The poster at the front will tell you what your flower means,” Ellie murmured.

    Silence followed.

    Oh no! They hate it!

    Ellie felt tears blooming. Until…

    Racing footsteps? Excited shouts?

    Her classmates jostled to decode their flower’s message.

    Ellie’s heart blossomed.

    After each classmate decoded their message, Ellie noticed an extra flower in her basket.

    I didn’t put this here? Her breath caught.

    At the bottom of the poster was a picture of her flower and a message in Grandma’s handwriting.

    “Amaryllis means: I’m so proud of you!”

  37. Andrew Fairchild (@AndrewFairchild) says:

    By: Andrew Fairchild
    202 Words

    The class was busy cutting, gluing and coloring their valentines.

    … except Val.

    Val stared at his sheets of paper.

    It wasn’t fair.

    No one picked Val.

    Even mean Hugo Snyder had a valentine.

    Once, Hugo made Val eat a bug.

    “Who needs a stupid valentine, anyway.” Val said.

    Suddenly, the classroom door opened.

    “Jake!” Val gushed.

    Jake always sat with Val at lunch when others wouldn’t.

    Always picked Val, even if he wasn’t the fastest.

    And when others were unkind, Jake made Val laugh.

    Val’s face beamed,

    his tummy fluttered.

    Val found his class valentine.

    Val quickly went to work.

    But Val’s first heart looked more like a rock.

    His second, like a blob of strawberry jam.

    And his third… just floppy rabbit ears.

    Val rushed to the shelf for more paper, but it was empty.

    Whatever would he do?

    Then Val had an idea.

    Val laid out all the hearts he’d made

    and started gluing, painting and coloring.

    When it was time to exchange valentines,

    Val handed Jake what he’d made.

    You like rocks.
    You love strawberry jam, too.
    I’m just so hoppy,
    to have a friend like you.

    And Jake was happy to have Val as a friend—too!

  38. Alicia Meyers says:

    By: Alicia Meyers
    WC: 205

    Cardi V was an unconventional card.
    Truly, one-of-a-kind.

    Her dreams went beyond the ordinary Valentine.
    Past the crisp folds
    and generic messages like…
    “Happy Valentine’s Day!”
    “Will you be my Valentine?”

    Cardi Marie Valentine:
    A visionary.
    Filled with creative purpose.
    Born to find a home and spread love
    on one very special day.

    Her transformation: inspiring.
    Flap, fold went her paper.
    Splat, squish went the glue.
    Swish, swoosh went the bristles,
    as the brush swirled with wonder.

    And for the finishing touch…

    Scribble, scribble, dot.
    A sentimental message,
    straight from the heart.

    Cardi stood in awe
    as she gazed at the reflection
    of her self-made masterpiece.

    And then…

    Through the sea of red and pink,
    sat a child withdrawn,
    working on a piece of perfection.
    Flap, fold.
    Splat, squish.
    Swish, swoosh.
    Scribble, scribble, dot!

    She overflowed with creative purpose,
    with a name tag reading,
    Carli V.

    Tightly wrapped in an envelope, Cardi’s thoughts raced with excitement.
    Cardi & Carli…
    A Valentine miracle!

    “Carli, this one’s for you!” a voice called.

    Cardi’s glitter fluttered as her envelope opened.
    (She was made for this moment.)

    The girl’s smile spread like a wildfire
    as she read the message gifted to her.

    “I love you with all my art.”

  39. Teacher on Hiatus says:

    The Heart of the Matter
    by Sarah Marhevsky
    214 words

    “It seems like your heart just isn’t in this!” Ms. Cumulus, the cloud-shape teacher, snapped at Cirrus. “And on Valentine’s Day, too!”

    Cirrus drifted down, disheartened. Other cloudlets stretched into elephants, snaking out wispy trunks or floppy ears.

    “Be the elephant!” Ms. Cumulus said.

    Cirrus half-heartedly waved a bit of fluff.

    Below her, a little boy lay on a blanket with his mama. He pointed up. “Is that a jellyfish?”

    Cirrus lost heart.

    “Put on your best show!” enthused Ms. Cumulus.

    Cirrus stayed a blob. Other cloudlets became cats, koalas, and crabs with giant pincers.

    The little boy smiled.

    “Dinosaur in a tutu!” Ms. Cumulus cried, beginning to shift. Could she do it? Cirrus wondered.

    Yes: brontosaurus ballerina! The little boy cheered.

    Then he wailed.

    Cirrus looked down, heart in her mouth.

    “Mama, I bit my tongue!”

    His mama hugged her crying boy.

    Cirrus, forgetting to be nervous, spread a little this way, a little that way, and enveloped them both in a shadowy cloud heart.

    “Look!” his mama said. “The cloud wants you to feel better!” The boy sniffled, but when he saw the heart-shadow, he smiled.

    “Thank you!” he called up. Cirrus puffed with pride.

    “I was wrong about you, Cirrus,” Ms. Cumulus said to her. “You’ve got a LOT of heart!”

  40. Susanna Leonard Hill says:


    Bear and Fish – a Love Story
    By Aly Kenna
    Word count: 151

    Bear and Fish met in a stream
    or so the story goes.
    Bear showed off and caught her eye –
    no-one really knows.

    They fell in love that very day
    in the spot where they had met.
    Bear took his love to meet his ma
    who did not seem upset.

    Ma licked her chops, got out a pan
    and welcomed Fish to brunch.
    Proud Bear was to please his ma
    he made a party punch.

    As time went on, the days got short
    and snow began to fall.
    Fish broke the news, she had to leave
    to answer natures call.

    Bear curled up all by himself
    and cried himself to sleep.
    When Bear woke up the snow was gone
    he had a date to keep.

    And there she was as they’d agreed,
    in the stream where they first met.
    Bear roared out loud and flopped right in,
    they sang a rich duet.

  41. Sara Petersohn says:

    By Sara Petersohn
    168 words

    Whistle blows,
    racers run,
    every kid
    except for one.

    Leo limps
    and comes in last.
    Kat takes first.
    She’s rocket-fast.

    Kat sees Leo
    limping in.
    He does not quit,
    though he cannot win.

    Kat likes Leo.
    He is kind.
    He helps with math
    when she’s behind.

    Teacher says,
    “For Valentine’s Day,
    let’s show love
    in some new way.”

    Back at class
    it’s time for art.
    Leo makes
    a bright red heart.

    He hands Kat
    his Valentine
    while all the kids
    get back in line.

    Whistle blows,
    they race again.
    Kat starts out
    in first, but then…

    She runs back
    to Leo’s side.
    Teacher’s face
    lights up with pride.

    Kat and Leo
    run the race
    and win tenth place!

    Teacher gives them
    both a prize:
    a bag of mini
    chocolate pies.

    Walking home
    along Pear Street
    Kat and Leo
    share their treat.

    Both of them
    know this is true –
    fast or smart,
    me or you:

    It’s fun to win,
    or ace a test,
    but being someone’s
    friend is best.

  42. writestuff99 says:

    Sweet Breakfast
    By JC Kelly
    214 Words

    SNIP went the scissors. PFFFT went the glue. SWOOSH went the glitter (everywhere) as Riley made Valentine’s Day cards.

    Outside, the first few snowflakes snuck through the air, slipping softly to the ground.

    CRACK went the eggs. SWISH went the flour. WHIRR went the mixer as Riley mixed cookie dough.

    HUSH whispered the snow as it sneakily dusted the street.

    SPLAT went the icing. SQUISH went the candies. PITTER-PATTER went the sprinkles (everywhere), as Riley decorated cookies with pink and red sugar.

    SSSSH hissed the snow as it quietly blanketed everything.

    ZIP went the backpack zipper as Riley packed her goodies for the school party tomorrow. She couldn’t wait to share her cards and cookies.

    WHOOSH blustered the wind, blowing drifts overnight, burying everything under a blur of sparkling white.

    RUMBLE went the plows as Riley awoke on Valentine’s Day. SLUMP went her shoulders when she heard “Snow Day.”

    A few minutes later…

    SCRAPE went the shovel. HUFF went Riley’s breath as she struggled to clear the snow leading to her elderly neighbor’s door.

    “Oh my,” cried Mrs. Rogers. “Did you do this yourself?” Riley nodded and beamed with pride as she admired the neatly shoveled walkway.

    “Yum,” said Riley and Mrs. Rogers as they enjoyed sugar cookies and hot cocoa for Valentine’s breakfast!

  43. Becky Goodman says:

    ValenTalent Show
    by Becky Goodman
    Word Count: 214

    Ester Van Winkle entered the world and took a bow.
    Her parents applauded Ester’s melodious cries, nimble limbs, and determined expressions. “You can be anything you want to be,” they cooed.

    As Ester grew, her parents’ praise grew too. She was a chef, an artist, a wonder.

    “I can be anything I want to be,” she told her mirror every morning before kindergarten.
    Ester spread esteem to classmates. “You can be anything!” she told everyone.

    When the school announced its ValenTalent Show, Ester announced her entry.

    “I’ll be a keyboardist,” she told her parents. “Perform for the whole school!”

    Her parents’ praise…paused.
    They wondered at their wonder:
    “But…you don’t play the keyboard…?”
    “I can be anything.”
    “But…can you be a keyboardist – by Monday?”

    “I know how to play.” Ester poised at her keyboard, smoothed the keys one way, and then the other. “See?”
    Her parents saw it.
    Determined, nimble…

    Monday arrived, and eventually, Van Winkle took the ValenTalent floor.
    Beaming beneath the spotlight, Ester cracked her knuckles and spoke:
    “This is for my parents. Happy Valentine’s Day. If I can be anything, you’re my everything.”
    She played her tune. Smoothly, effortlessly, up-and-down-y.

    For the first time ever, the ValenTalent show featured a prize: music lessons for a year!

    Ester Van Winkle took a bow.

  44. Jessica Watts (@jesssicawatts) says:

    by Jessica Watts
    Word Count: 214

    “I’m not going,” Marla cried. “I’m sick.”

    Marla knew her Valentine’s box would be empty. Just like last year, and the year before that. She had even refused to make valentines.
    “What’s the point,” she had muttered. “I never get anything.”

    Marla burrowed in bed.

    She read, pitifully slurped a bowl of soup, and read some more. She thought about all the fun her classmates must be having without her.
    “Maybe I made a mistake,” she murmured as her eyes fluttered shut.

    She could hear a classmate yelling. “Marla, I have a card for you!”

    “Me too,” chimed a friend.

    “Me three,” echoed another.

    Empty-handed, Marla looked at her feet.


    Marla bolted awake.

    “Marla, It’s for you!” called her mom.

    Marla crawled out of bed and shuffled down the hall.

    “Hi, Marla! We missed you today. Here’s your Valentine’s Day box; it’s filled with cards. Anyway, hope you feel better soon.”

    “Thanks, Mrs. Teedleman!”

    Beaming with pride, she looked at her mom, “These are from my friends!”

    Marla and her mom sat on the living room floor as Marla read each one aloud.

    “Is it too late to make valentines for my classmates?” Marla asked.

    Her mom smiled. “I thought you were sick.”

    Marla jumped up. “I’m suddenly feeling much better!”

  45. MeiLin Chan says:

    by MeiLin Chan
    213 Words

    The Jade Emperor has called the Great Race.

    The first twelve animals who cross the Yangtze River will be in the zodiac.

    It’s special to be in the zodiac but what stirs Koi’s heart more is Miss Goldfish.

    She’ll go to the Big Splash Valentine’s Ball with him if he wins.

    He has been wiggling his fins and swaying his tail for months.

    Koi is ready!

    Rat hitches a ride on Ox and is first.

    Ox comes in second followed by Tiger in third.

    Rabbit slips but floats to fourth with the help of a drifting log.

    Dragon flies in next at fifth just as Horse gallops his way in.

    But Snake hisses from behind Horse’s foot and beats him. Sixth and Seventh.

    Sheep, Monkey, and Rooster work together and come in that order. Eighth! Ninth! Tenth!

    Dog arrives eleventh, with Koi right behind! But then…


    A minnow is caught between two rocks.

    Pig is approaching and Koi has to make a choice.

    He frees the minnow just as Pig crosses the finish line.

    His heart now weighs more than the rocks that caught the minnow, but then…

    “The minnow you saved is my best friend,” says Miss Goldfish. “I am so proud of you, let’s go wiggle-dance at the Ball!”

  46. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    ENTRY POSTED FOR UNA (received on time, posted late by me)

    Una Belle Townsend
    214 Wds.
    Surprise Valentine’s Day Party

    Biking near some homes for sale, Penny said, “I miss our neighbor, Mrs. Cobb. She’s moved to Ada’s Retirement Center.”
    “My neighbor, Mr. Denton, is there, too,” said Bill.
    “We should go see them. We can make them Valentine’s,” said Penny.
    “Say, let’s plan a Valentine’s party for them.”
    “Good idea, but it will be a better party if we include their new friends there, too,” said Penny.
    The next day, they asked the retirement center director, and she said they could have a party, sing songs, and play bingo. The center would furnish a heart-shaped cake and music.
    The planning went smoothly. Penny and Bill made Valentine decorations and gathered bingo prizes.
    Everything was good until they heard Mrs. Cobb’s daughter might take her home for the weekend.
    Penny said, “What should we do?” She finally asked the director to tell the daughter about the surprise party. The daughter liked the idea, and said she’d donate ice cream for it.
    “Bill, there’s one thing left,” said Penny. “I’m making crowns for the King and Queen of Valentine’s Day.”
    The next week, the local newspaper’s column, “We’re proud of our Citizens” showed pictures of Penny and Bill, many retirement guests, and a surprised King and Queen of Valentine’s Day, Mrs. Cobb and Mr. Denton.

  47. Susanna Leonard Hill says:

    ENTRY POSTED FOR ADOLFO (received on time, posted late by me)

    My first love
    Adolfo Gomez-Herrera

    It’s not your fault she said to me

    hiding behind a blossomed tree.

    The blossoms a crimson bright red

    I asked of her if she would wed.

    She held my hand and boy, I cried

    my knee was badly bruised and bloodied

    as the blood ran down, I thought I die

    She said; stand up and show your pride

    And so it was we ran again; she leading the way, much taller than me and older by years. (So beautiful, so dear.) With her, I learned to climb a tree, and later, as I splattered lemonade, how to dress my wounded knee.

    We saw some fruits I didn’t know. Since she had a bite, I would do so. She taught me to be kind and play with bees and also what it felt like to hug a tree.

    The sun was leaving; I took her hand so proudly to walk right by her side. As the fireflies flew I told myself, I am so happy she is my girl.

    Will you marry me?

    And what do we do with your dad? He loves you as much as he loves me.

    Oh, Mom, I love you; would you then be my Valentine? Please.

    That was then when I was three.

  48. susaninez0905 says:

    Little Star’s Wish
    By: Susan Summers
    WC: 207

    Little Star looked around the sky and announced,
    “I want to shine like Sirius! I love how she twinkles and twirls.”
    “It’s not time yet,” Mother said.

    After thinking for a moment, Little Star said,
    “I want to beam like Betelguese! He has the best shimmer and swirl.”
    “It’s not time yet,” Mother replied.
    “When will it be my time?!” He cried.
    “You’ll know,” she answered with a wink.

    Little Star watched others light up the night.
    They blinked, winked, and zipped through the sky.

    “When will it be my turn?” He wondered.

    “Twinkle, twinkle, little star,” sang a child’s voice.
    Little Star swirled.
    Where was that coming from?
    “Look at that face. So sad.” He thought.
    “Maybe I can help.”

    With a wiggle and a waggle, he began to glow.
    Using all kindness and love in his heart, he pulsed out the brightest light possible.

    “Look, Mommy! I see a bright red star in the sky!” Shouted the child.
    “I see it too. Was it there before?”
    “It’s like a beautiful valentine. So pretty,” she smiled.

    Little Star was so proud, he pulsed a little brighter.
    “You found your glow,” said Mother.
    “Beautiful like Betelguese, steady like Sirius,” said Little Star.
    “It’s my time to shine.”

Leave a 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 )

Twitter picture

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

Facebook photo

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

Connecting to %s