We were reading old stories written by us kids, and laughing at some of them. My younger siblings used to, at times, dictate stories to me which I would write by hand or on the computer. When we were bored and trying to think of what to do, one of the options we’d sometimes come up with was, “Tell stories”. Not all of them were saved, but I can remember some common themes. Most of them featured “a little boy”, who was not always named. Many involved a farmer–I can remember Justin dictating a long, long story which took several hours about a farmer, but I don’t seem to have that one saved anywhere. Owen’s stories usually had lots of random, unrelated things happening one after the other. Evan’s stories, on the other hand, usually had some kind of tragic element to it, and often involved the woods–a little boy boy going off on his own to live in the woods, for example, and having to take care of himself and feeling very sad because he missed his parents–or something of that sort. I seem to recall that many of the stories also featured a little boy being naughty, for which there were always consequences. Many of the kids stories had food in it, various yummy things that the people in the story were eating, I guess because that was a fun thing for them to imagine.
Each of these stories can only be best appreciated if you were there to hear to hear the 5 – 7 year old child telling it, a faraway look in their eyes as they imagined what was happening in their tale. They lose some of the charm when they are only words written on paper, and so many years have passed that I can’t remember the sound of their voice as they told it.
Here are a few of the stories I have saved:
This was an anonymous story, probably by Evan or Justin:
“Once upon a time, there was a little boy named Fred. He had a mother and father. And he was 5. One day, he decided to go up in the woods. Course, that wasn’t so strange, because he liked to go up in the woods a lot. And he brung some clothes to dress up in. And so he went halfway up there, and got on his clothes, which were like an alien. So he made an “Eeek!” And his mother and father came running, and he sneaked up on them. And he jumped and faced-to-faced them. So his mother and father screamed! So he took off his clothes quickly, very quick. And he jumped in front of them, and his mother and father said, “We saw an alien!” He laughed and said, “That was just me!”
This story was another anonymous story, but I have a guess of who wrote it:
“Once upon a time there was a sheep farm, and on the sheep farm who take care of the sheep was named Charlie Brown, and he liked to take care of his sheep, and he liked haying best. Till one day he decided farming wasn’t any good because his barn collapsed. And it got burned up after that, and he had to go the hospital, and that was a sad story. The End.”
It makes me laugh because it would be just like little six-year old Evan to think up a little sad tale like that. I hadn’t written on the paper who dictated the story, but I do suspect it was Evan. Evan’s always had a bit of a melancholy streak.
I believe this one was by Owen. If nothing else, because of the emphasis on certain words, which is the way Owen used to talk when he was little. (“Snack bar”, by the way, is what we used to call it when we pretended we had a restaurant and served various snacks to our customers–i.e. siblings–such as toast or a piece of fruit. It used to be a common occurrence for one of the little kids to ask Mom, “Hey Mom, can I do a snack bar?” Originally they were part of a larger game but I think at some point it became just a commonplace thing to do.)
“A little boy named Justin, and then he asked his mother and father if he could make a snack bar. And then he decided to go up in the woods with a gun, and he saw a deer eatin’ berries, and he wished HE could eat berries, too! And so he SHOT THE DEER. Then he went farther up into the woods. Then he found some different berries, and he picked them and put them in a bowl. Then he heard howlings of a coyote. Then he noticed a coyote got hurt. Then he went to go find the coyote that got hurt. And THEN he FINALLY went to the top of the woods, which of COURSE wasn’t too far, because he didn’t have a very big woods. THEN he went back down to the house. And then his mother and father said, “You’ve been up in the woods very long, I think.” And THEN he climbed up the apple tree. Then the mother and father said to the boy in the tree, “I think we want a new name for you, Justin.” They said, “What’s your name, is Owen.” Then, they went to Jim & Daryl’s. Then what happened is they by mistake ran over a dog. Then it’s THE END. “
Story by Evan, age 6, dictated to Cadie. June 29, 1999:
“Once there was a little wolf that liked to eat people. And it always liked to eat little people best. And there was this little boy with this nice flashlight and he went up in the woods every night. And then the little boy began to go up in the woods that night. And then he came to a wolfhole right in front of him. And then the wolf sprang out! And then he ate the little boy!! And his mom was getting worried because he wasn’t back in time. And he always said he’d be back in time. So that night they went up to hunt the wolf. And they found the wolf. And they both shot it with their two-barrel guns. So that night they were very sad, because that little boy always, always helped them when they needed help.”
(You can see the theme of sadness in Evan’s stories.)
This one was titled “DEIRDRE’S ADVENTURE” by Deirdre, early 2007 (age 5) but it is really a story about a naughty little boy.
“Once upon a time there was a big city. There was like no possible way to walk, there was so many peoples walking around. All the houses were empty. That’s why it seemed like there was no possible way to walk. You see, it’s not like that here; it’s just a little village. There is some possible way to walk here–you just walk into the city!
But there was a little place with a house on a hill far away from the city. A little boy’s mother said, “Don’t go on the path, go on the grass. Just make sure you go on the grass, but don’t wander onto the path.”
So the little boy wandered onto the path. He came to a big city. He went over a bridge into the big city, and he kept on walking until all of the peoples were int eh house. He wasn’t in time but he knocked on the door. A lady opened the door, said “Come in! I’d love you if you came in. Come on in.” The little boy came in; the lady got some drink and some food for him. He ate up all the drink and the food, but he walked home to his mother’s house, and he said to his mother, “I went in to the city!” His mother gave him a spanking of course.
Peoples from everywhere came from each house to visit and have a nice party. But the little boy didn’t go in or out of bed. While the people were still having the party, he snuck out of bed and hurried along the bridge to one of the city houses and had a party there. “Nice cake!” he said. And he ran back to his bed before his mother could say, “You can come down, Jack, and stop resting.” Now the little boy was being very bad. He went up into a tree and built a treehouse for only himself to sleep in, and do stuff that he wanted to.
Now the mother wondered where he was. The little boy finished his house just in time and took a little rest from making his treehouse. Now when he woke up from his little rest he ate some of his food he brought and then it was almost nighttime so he got ready for bed and went to bed. A little girl came to his treehouse and knocked on the door. He opened the door and said “Welcome in!” They had a little party, but when they were done the little girl had to come and go to her mother–go home to her mother. But she said goodbye; Jack said goodbye too. Know why he built that treehouse? So he could go to the city whenever he wanted to without bothering his mom and dad. Now the boy fell asleep every night and had no trouble doing anything. But he was being very bad, don’t you think?
The little boy kept walking to the big city. But uh-oh! He found a a big monster in the middle of the path. He RAN away. And the monster ran away too! But he wasn’t exactly running away, he was running away after the little boy! And then the monster hid. The little boy thought it was safe. So he went out to the city again. The monster kept roaring and roaring after him! But the little boy didn’t hear it, he was so calmly walking. Gulp! The monster ate him! But swallowed him whole–so the the little boy could just crawl out. The End.