An Exciting Evening in our Neighborhood!


When all of the wrappers are empty

and all of the candy devoured,

The Word of God remains.

In this you can be secure.

“Jesus Christ the same, yesterday, today and tomorrow.”

It was so exciting in our neighborhood last night. We saw a beautiful Cinderella, a cute little lady bug, some pirates, two “Officers in Blue”, two Darth Vaders, Many Star War characters, pirates, (one beautiful girl pirate in a gorgeous costume!) Too many to count.

John was giving out treats to four young ladies (probably in 4th -6th grade) and one girl dressed in a pioneer dress and bonnet caught my attention. She reminded me of “Ma Ingalls” with pretty blonde hair. (Probably Laura or Mary Ingalls) For some reason, I had an overwhelming desire to give her a copy of The Vision of a Mother’s Heart. (My book). She reminded me of “Isabel!” I grabbed a book and ran after her.

The Vision of a Mother's Heart


She was so excited when I told her she could keep it. Her three friend’s faces lit up. “May we have one too?” “Of course!” So I gave out books and promised they could stop by and I would sigh it for them – if they like it.

A light went off for John. “How many Missy Cats books do you have?

A Christmas Story



We gave out quite a few to the little ones. Thank you, Lord for the opportunity to serve Him even on an occassion first designed in paganism. Between Gospel Tracts and my books,which include the Gospel,  Jesus was our focus tonight.

God’s Word never returns void. I am praying for each child and parent we met last night.

Did I mention we also got to meet many neighbors? It was a beautiful night and many of our neighbors sat on their porches to give out treats and we decided to sit outside as well. It was a wonderful evening.

Now, if only I had thought to take pictures! Speaking of pictures, I found these two gems among the Purdy Family Pictures. These two snapshots were taken in 1958. My husband is the cute little pirate.


Things haven’t changed too much over the years. Have they?

Egg Shampoo and Rainwater: Sample Chapter from The Vision of a Mother’s Heart (Katherine H. Purdy)

The weeks of rain showers reminde me of one of my favorite chapters in

The Vision of a Mother’s Heart!


 In 1924 some things were done differently. Isabel’s family had a pump in the kitchen but it only pumped cold water. Families who lived in the country only took a full bath once a week as well as washing their hair. In order to conserve water during a dry season, families kept a rain barrel under the gutter to catch rain water. If you were creative, you could turn a chore such as washing your hair into a play time. My grandmother talked about washing her hair in the rain and allowed her children to do the same. When I was a child, I wanted the same experience but was told there was too much pollution in the air.  So, lets enjoy Isabel and her two sisters experiencee from Chapter 22 of The Vision of a Mother’s Heart.

Egg Shampoo and Rainwater

“WELL,” MAMA said as she placed the last loaf of bread into the oven, “tomorrow is Sunday, so we need to wash your hair, girls.”

“May we wash our hair in the rain?” Isabel asked as she looked outside at the cool, steady rain from the kitchen window.

“You always say that rain water smells good and we won’t have to use up the well water for our hair.” Isabel smiled as she made the last comment, knowing Papa was worried that the well would go dry before the end of the summer.

“Well,” Mama said, “I suppose it would be alright as long as you agree to come back inside at the first sound of thunder.

Go upstairs, and put on your bathing clothes so you will not mess up your work clothes.”

“Yes, Mama,” Isabel said. She headed for the back steps to her room. Maggie and Sylvia followed and then passed her on the steps.

“Oh boy,” Sylvia raced to their room. “I love playing in the rain.”  ”Sylvia said as she quickly dressed.

“Well,” Isabel said, “we are not playing in the rain; we are washing our hair.”

Isabel said. She pulled out her bathing I wish Mama and Papa would allow us to wear the new style like everyone else.

These old things are heavier than our regular dresses. Besides, they look ugly, and they are no good for swimming.  The last time we went swimming, I nearly drowned because my clothes were full of water and dragging me under water.”

“I remember,” Maggie said. She giggled and watched Isabel make funny faces at the offending fabric.

“Ye gads,” Isabel said. She attempted to button the dress portion of her swimsuit.

“Isabel,” Maggie said, “you just used God’s name in vain.”

“No I didn’t. I just said the same thing everybody says.”

“Mama wouldn’t like it..”

“Oh, Maggie,” Isabel said to her sister, who was also struggling with her suit, “you are such a goody-goody sometimes.

Besides, I said g-a-ds and with a little g – like the Roman gods, you know.”

“That does not make it right, Isabel. It is still using God’s name in vain,” Maggie said.

 Isabel decided to drop the issue.

“I’m telling Mama you’re swearing,” Sylvia said as she headed for the bedroom door.

“Please don’t tell her.  It will only upset her, and I promise never to say that again.” Sylvia twisted the doorknob, and Isabel spoke up once more.

I will give you a nickel if you don’t tell.”

“Okay,” Sylvia said. She took the coin from Isabel and Now shut your eyes, and don’t peek!”

Even with her eyes closed, Isabel could hear Sylvia placing the coin under her mattress for safekeeping. Next, Isabel could hear a soft thud as Sylvia removed her hand from under the mattress and a trashing sound as her hands were smoothing out wrinkles from the covers.

As if we didn’t know where she keeps things she doesn’t want us to see,” Maggie said as Sylvia exited the room.

“What do you mean?” Isabel questioned with suspicion.

Sylvie always puts her money and other secret treasures under her mattress. Didn’t you know? ”

“No,” Isabel said.

Maggie said with a smile. “You keep your diary in that old hatbox in the far right corner of the closet,

and the key to unlock it is on a string hanging behind the picture on the wall.”

“Maggie Greene,” Isabel said, “you’ve been snooping.”

Maggie said sweetly as she walked to the window and pulled back the curtain, revealing the old climbing tree a few feet from the house.

“If you want to hide something in our room, you should close the curtain or make sure no one is sitting in the tree reading. ”

“Margaret Louise Greene,  it’s impolite to spy on people; you should have let me know ”

“I saw your diary and you wrote that you have a boyfriend.”

“I do not have a boyfriend!”

Isabel and Arnie sitting in a tree…” Maggie chanted as she took off down the steps with Isabel close behind.

“No running in the house, girls,” Mama said as they entered the kitchen. They slowed their pace to a quick walk as they stepped outside

into the pouring rain.

“Now girls,” Mama said as she stepped onto the back porch. “Lather your hair twice, and be sure to get the suds out.

I will mix up the rinse and be back in a few minutes.”

The three girls twirled around in the rain until their hair was completely wet and then stepped back onto the porch.

“Here,” Isabel said. She picked up the jar of shampoo. “I’ll pour some on your hair, and then you can pour some on mine.”

She poured the amber liquid onto Maggie’s head and massaged it into her sister’s hair. Next, Isabel turned and repeated the

 same for Sylvia. Then Maggie poured the slimy liquid onto Isabel’s head.

“Work up a good lather,” Isabel said as she worked the shampoo through her own long hair.

“Sylvie, it looks you’re wearing a crown on your head. Maggie, let’s see how high we can pile the suds on your head.”

The girls giggled as they made funny figurines on their heads.

“We should rinse it off or the suds will make our head itch.: Isabel quoted Mama, who warned them each time they washed their hair.

“We know that,” Maggie said and then raced off the porch to rinse the suds from her hair and was followed by her sisters.


The girls danced around in the rain again as they attempted to rinse out the offensive lather.

“Oh no,” Isabel said, “the rain is slacking off.”

“Let’s do the second lather before it stops altogether,” Maggie said.


They ran back to the porch and repeated the procedure. Just as they stepped off the porch, the sky seemed to open up

with the heaviest rain they had seen all year.

Sylvia said. She twirled around, allowing the rain to wash her face as well as whisk away the shampoo.

“My hair feels softer already and smells good too,” Isabel said.


Mama stepped onto the porch with a tray containing three jars. She handed Isabel the jar with an amber-colored liquid.

“Apple cider vinegar to rinse your pretty brown hair.”

Isabel wrinkled her nose as she drenched her hair with the pungent rinse. “It stinks,” she said.

“It will make your hair nice and shiny, and it will wash away the suds,” Mama said.

She handed the jar of lemon juice to Maggie and then poured the liquid from the remaining jar on Sylvia’s head and worked it through her hair.

“Why do we have to use lemon juice?” Sylvia asked.

“Because you have blonde hair; it will make it shine like the sun. Now, run back into the rain and rinse.”

The girls obeyed their mother and stepped back onto the porch to squeeze all of the water out of their hair.

Isabel ran her fingers through her hair as she pushed the water out and then squeezed.

“Do you hear that?” she said. “Squeaky clean.”

“Perfect!” Mama said and handed each daughter a dry towel. “Now squeeze the water out of your suits, and go inside.”


After changing from their wet clothes, Isabel and her sisters returned to the kitchen to sit by the stove to dry their hair as they

enjoyed freshly baked cookies and hot chocolate.

“I love washing my hair in the rain,” Isabel said.

“Me too,” the younger girls agreed.

“Yes,” Mama said, “I’m thankful for the rain which will help the crops grow and will help keep my family clean.”


The argument between Isabel and Maggie was lost in the suds and washed away with the raindrops.


The Vision of a Mother’s Heart ~ The Lesson

Summertime is a wonderful time for families to do activities together. One day, the Greene boys decided to give their dog, Sandy a bath while their younger sisters were hanging sheets on the line for Mama. The result was a lot of fun for the children but extra work for “Mama,” especially since the sheets were dragged through the mud twice! What would you do? Did she fret or did she use the opportunity turn the bad event into something wonderful?

I’ll let you decide. This is a repost of a blog I posted last year. Happy reading!

What would you do if your dog pulled a clean sheet off the clothes line and dragged it through the mud? Isabel’s Mama turned it into an opportunity to share the Gospel. Read part of a chapter from The Vision of a Mother’s Heart to see how Mama used a dirty sheet to share the Gospel.

Isabel followed Mama and the children outside, helped her dump muddy water, and refilled the tubs with clean water for washing as Eugene built a fire under the wash water.
“Now,” said Mama, “This dirty, filthy sheet reminds me of something.”
“Mama,” said Maggie softly, “I don’t think it’s just dirt and mud…this one stinks!”
“Oh, Sandy, sighed Mama as she picked up the corner of the sheet and held it up for the children to see. Do you know what this reminds me of?”
“Sandy? Curtis asked with a wide grin on his face.”
“Doing laundry?”
“Sin,” said Maggie.
“Yes, said Mama, It does remind me of sin, especially since we continue to sin again and again but Jesus has washed us clean in His precious blood so that all the Father sees when He looks at us is the precious blood of His son…and not our dirty, stinky sin. However, that is not the lesson I came outside to teach you today.”
“It isn’t?” The children asked in unison.
“No, it isn’t,” said Mama as she walked around, showing the sheet to each child, making sure they got a good whiff as she passed by, “this sheet reminds me of my good works.”
Isabel could hear a gasp, her own amongst them.
“Isabel,” said Mama, “I have heard you often say lately that you are ‘doing a good deed today’ and I want to make sure that my children are not counting on good deeds to go to heaven.” Mama stopped and looked seriously at each of her children before she finished her thought.
“You see,” continued Mama, “the Bible says that all our good works are as filthy rags to the Lord. There is absolutely nothing that we can do to earn our way to heaven. God is so Holy, so good, that in comparison the very best we can do is…well like this filthy sheet.”
“Ugh, that’s really bad!” Isabel turned to see which brother had spoken but could not see for the tears in her eyes. If Mama’s good works are as nasty as that sheet, what about mine? The thought cut to her heart, Everybody has always told me that I’m a good girl; certainly not a sinner. Of course, everyone is a sinner, Isabel admitted to herself. She quoted Romans 3:23 quietly to herself.
“For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God”that means me.
Isabel thought about the unkind words she had said about Sally Anne before she really knew her and suddenly, she remembered talking back to Papa in her heart and she thought of all the times her pride was hurt by the other girls at school and she knew without a doubt that Isabel Greene was indeed a sinner. Her heart pounded and her stomach churned as she remembered
Romans 6:23 which says that “the wages of sin is death”, and that means separation from God, we learned that in Sunday School. What was the rest of that verse? Oh yeah, “But the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.”
Isabel returned her focus to Mama who was just about to dip the sheet in to the wash water, which Isabel knew contained Clorox bleach, for she had noticed Mama pouring liquid from the brown bottle into the water while the children were talking amongst themselves. Isabel listened carefully as Mama continued to speak.
“Our good works will not get us to heaven. We cannot work our way to heaven, or buy our way. There is nothing we can do. Going to church does not save us either, she said quietly. There is only one way to heaven. Jesus said:
‘I am the way, the truth and the Life, no man cometh to the Father but by me.”
“ Jesus died on the cross and shed His blood for our sin,” said Mama as she put the sheet into the soapy water, sloshing it around with her hands and rubbing it on the scrubbing board as she talked. “The Bible says
‘ Though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool’,
When she pulled the sheet out of the water, it was clean, and white.
Mama whispered something to Eugene who disappeared and quickly returned carrying Mama’s goody tin. Mama opened tin as she spoke.
“Salvation is a gift. A gift is free, you cannot earn it or it would not be a gift; nor can you purchase it. Do you understand what I am saying?” Mama said.
Isabel looked around to see if everyone understood and was surprised to see Sally Anne and some neighborhood children sitting in the grass with them. Isabel smiled and returned her attention to Mama and the important gift of salvation.
“Good,” said Mama,“I’m glad you understand and accept the Truth of the Word of God but you have not yet received the free gift, have you? All that is left for you to do is to receive God’s gift of salvation, just as I have this little gift for you.” Mama reached into her tin and pulled out a peppermint stick and offered it to Sally Anne who reached out and took it with a polite
“Thank you.”
“Now,” said Mama, “that gift is yours to keep and no one can take it from you; it belongs to you.
“Salvation is just as simple. You trusted me to give you a good gift and opened your hand to receive it; we call this faith. Trusting The Lord Jesus Christ for salvation is faith. John 1:12 says: “But as many as received Him, to them He gave the power to become the sons of God, even to them that believe on His name:”
“ When you receive Christ as your savior, you become a brand new creation. This is part of His gift…new life!” Mama gave a “gift” to everyone before continuing. “Part of receiving the gift of salvation, my dear children, is repentance. This means to be truly sorry for your sin, ask Jesus to forgive you and leave that sin with Him. Some preachers say it this way: ‘take your sin to the cross, lay it at the feet of Jesus then turn and go the other way.’ In other words, don’t go back to your old sinful way; remember, Jesus washed your filthy sins away, see the dirty water?”
The children stood up, looked into the tub of muddy water, and nodded.
“Mama,” said Isabel, “I want my sins cleaned away so that I will be white as snow.”
“Me too,” said Maggie with tears running down her rosy cheeks.
“Let’s pray together,” said Mama as she hugged each daughter close to her heart, then directed them to the back porch steps where they tearfully laid their sinful self at the cross, asking and receiving the forgiveness that Jesus extended to us all on the cross of Calvary. They opened their eyes as new creations in Christ.

The Vision of a Mother’s Heart.

A Birthday Surprise Conclusion


A Birthday Surprise Conclusion

Isabel joined her family in Papa’s car just as the sun was
beginning to set upon the day. “Thank you, Papa, for such a
beautiful day. I’ll never forget it.”
Isabel cuddled Raymond in her arms and sat back in her seat to remember her first birthday
without Mama, and yet, Mama’s presence seemed to permeate
the day. She breathed a prayer of thanksgiving for Mama, for
Papa, and for a loving family and friends, asking a special blessing
upon each person.

Isabel’s Birthday Surprise Part 3

Isabel’s Birthday Surprise
Part III

“This is the best day we have had in a long time. Thank
you so much for making my birthday special,” Isabel said as
her birthday cake was presented after supper. Not only were
there gifts for Isabel, but also there were trinkets for each of the
children, including the babies, who were happy just playing
with the paper and boxes.

“This is just like Christmas,” Jimmy said. He jumped up
and down with excitement. “Except without the Christmas tree
and the snow.” Everyone joined him in laughter.
Before she had time to blow out the candles, a car horn
sounded outside. “Who could that be,” Jim said as he answered
the front door.

“Only your best friend in the world,” said a cheerful voice
from the foyer.
“Sally Anne!” Isabel ran to greet her friend and found that
she was not alone. She had brought her parents, a new baby
brother, Cookie, and Arlene Mason.
“Arlene, this is a surprise,” Isabel said as she tried to hide
her shock. “Thank you for coming.”
“You are welcome, Isabel,” Arlene said. “I came to apologize
for being so mean to you before. I hope you will forgive me.”
Isabel sensed that she really meant it. “Of course, Arlene,”
she said. She hugged her new friend. “This is the best birthday
ever. Come inside everyone, and have some cake and ice cream
before the boys eat it all.”

“Isabel,” Mrs. Albright said, “we have something for you
from your mother. She wanted you to have this. She made the
arrangements months ago, before the twins were born. I hope
you like it.” Mrs. Albright handed Isabel a large, handsomely
wrapped gift box that was tied with a large, satin bow.

Isabel’s hands trembled as she pulled the ribbon and opened
the box. Inside the tissue paper lay a beautiful drop-waist dress,
just as Isabel had seen in the windows at the stores in Roanoke.

“How did you know?” Isabel said. She choked back her tears.
“Your mama asked me to buy the fabric and pattern for her
several months ago. She did some sewing for me to pay for it,
even though I offered to pay the cost myself. She wanted to make
it for you, but she fell ill. So I had my dressmaker make it for
you. I knew Lizzie would want you to have it for your birthday.
No one in the school will have this fabric…it came all the way
from New York.”

“Oh, thank you, Mrs. Albright!” She ran to her benefactress
with a tearful hug. “This is the most beautiful dress I have ever
owned. Mama would be so happy if she could see it.”
“Well, keep looking, and you will discover a few more
surprises from Sally Anne, Mr. Albright, and me.”

Isabel lifted the dress and underneath found beautiful
gifts to match the dress. “Oh, look at this beautiful shawl. It
goes perfectly.” Isabel examined the lace wrap. “There is also a
handbag and a headband. Thank you so much. You were too

“There are also some under things,” Sally Anne said, “but
you don’t want to show those.” Her announcement brought
laughter and good-natured teasing from the Greene boys.

“This isn’t much, Isabel,” Arlene said. She held out a small,
white box. “I saw it in the store, and it reminded me of you. I
hope you like it.”
Isabel opened the box and found a small pin with daffodils
hand painted on it.
“Oh, Arlene,” Isabel said. “It is lovely. How did you know
I like daffodils?”

“Well,” Arlene said, “I saw you pick one at your mama’s
funeral and put it into your Bible. I thought the flower must
remind you of her.”
“It does,” Isabel said with tears in her eyes, “and now they
will remind me of you too. Thank you for remembering.”

“We miss you, Isabel,” Arlene said.
“I miss you too,” Isabel said. She realized she had even missed
Arlene Mason.

“OK,” Aunt Jenny said with a box camera in hand.
“Isabel, I want to get a photograph of you with your little friends
so you can remember this day. Then we will take photographs
of everyone before it gets too dark.”

So Isabel stood with her friends for the moment to be
captured on film and cherished forever.

Isabel’s Birthday Surprise Sample 2 from The Vision of a Mother’s Heart

Happy Birthday Surprise Part II

“Happy birthday, Isabel,” rang out as Papa’s Model T pulled
into Jim’s yard. Isabel swallowed a lump in her throat as she
looked around at her older, married siblings, nieces, nephews,
aunts, uncles, cousins, and grandparents waiting at such an early
hour to greet her on her eleventh birthday.

“What’s everybody doing here?” Isabel asked.
“We are here to celebrate your birthday with you,” Grandma
Betty said. “You didn’t think we would forget your day just
because your mother is not here, did you?”
“No, but the other children have had birthdays, and we
celebrated quietly at home, with just us.”

“That was because they had you to make their day special.
We knew you would bake a cake and make a big ‘to do’ for them
at home. Also, it was too soon, you know.” Grandma Betty held
her arms out to baby Raymond and was rewarded with a loud
squeal. She lifted him from Isabel’s arms.

“It sure is nice to eat a big ol’ delicious breakfast and not
have to cook it,” Isabel said. She fed Ralph his soupy oatmeal,
because he had not yet mastered holding a spoon.
“Well, you need not worry about cleaning up either,” Lena
said. “We have that covered, don’t we, Gracie?” Nine-year-old
Gracie smiled as she cleared the table, and Maggie jumped up
to offer her assistance. Isabel just enjoyed the moment.

“Why don’t all of you girls go outside and enjoy yourselves
while Grandma Betty and I love on these babies for a while,” Lena
said. She reached for Raymond as he jumped towards her.
“Play?” Isabel said.
“Yes, play,” Lena said. “You know, where you run and act
silly and just be a child again.”
“I think I have forgotten how.”
“Well then,” Grandma Betty said, “it is best that you
remember while you can. Go outside and enjoy yourself.”

Isabel left instructions for the twins and followed her sisters
and nieces and young aunts outside to play, feeling somewhat
exhilarated and yet strange to be treated as one of the children

“Oh, what a shame,” Grandma Betty said as Isabel stepped
outside the door. “The poor thing has already lost most of her
childhood. If only Avil would let go of his pride and allow the
children to stay with some of us until he gets back on his feet,
I think everything would be okay.”
“I know,” Lena said, “but he’s “Papa”. What can we do?”

Isabel did not wait to hear the answer; she already knew.
There was nothing to do but to obey Papa. She shook dreary
thoughts from her head and looked at the smiling faces
surrounding her.

“What shall we play?” Isabel looked to Maggie, who looked
to Gracie.
“Why don’t we play Mother, May I?” Gracie said. She lined
everyone up for the game. “Isabel, you can be mother, since it
is your birthday.”
Isabel stood in front of the group and took a deep breath.
“OK,” she said, “take one giant step forward.”
“Mother, may I?”
“Yes, you may,” Isabel said with a giggle. “This is fun, isn’t
it? I had forgotten.”
It didn’t take long to finish the game, and Isabel became
bored with playing and was ready to go back inside to the babies.

“Oh, Isabel,” Gracie said with mock dismay,
“you aren’t fun anymore.”
“I know,” Isabel said. “But I promise to work on it. Maybe
we can play something else later.”

When Isabel entered the house, she heard Ralph crying and
knew that she had been missed. Her heart swelled with love for
her little brothers, who needed her.


Isabel’s Birthday Sample I from The Vision of a Mother’s Heart

Last August, I published a sample chapter of The Vision of a Mother’s Heart in my Winepress blog. I thought I would share this with you in three installments. Happy reading!
The Vision of a Mother’s Heart
By Katherine Hinchee Purdy

A Birthday Surprise

ISABEL LOOKED AT the date on the newspaper, and her
eyes filled with tears: August 24, 1925. “It’s my birthday,” she
whispered to little Ralph, who lay quietly in her arms as he
teetered between sleep and wakefulness. He jumped slightly as
he edged closer to slumber, fighting to stay awake. Isabel smiled
as she looked down at her eight-month-old brother and thought
back in time to last year, when she had been so excited to enter
the grownup world of “double digits.”
“I wish Mama were here,” she whispered. A tear slid down
her cheek.

“I wish she were here too, Pumpkin,” said a deep voice from
the shadows, startling Isabel and the baby.
“Papa, I didn’t know you were awake. The rooster hasn’t
even crowed yet,” Isabel said with a hint of teasing in her voice.
She rose gently from the rocker.

“No, don’t worry about getting breakfast yet; it’s too early,”
Papa said. He took the slumbering baby and laid him in his crib.
“Besides, Lena is fixing a breakfast fit for a queen this morning,
and she said to be sure to have you and the children at her house
there in time to enjoy it while it’s hot. Did you get any sleep
last night? I think I heard the little ones exercising their lungs
a couple of times, but they had stopped before I could get up
to see to them.”

“They just needed a diaper change and their regular
4:00 A.M. feeding,” Isabel said. She stretched and yawned and
then walked to the sink to start a pot of coffee.”

“Now what did I just tell you?” Papa said with mock consternation
in his voice as he watched his eleven-year-old daughter
make a strong pot of coffee just the way he liked it—with nutmeg
and egg shells to make even the cheapest coffee taste full and
rich, just as her Mama had taught her. Isabel looked up just as
he was wiping away a tear with his handkerchief.

“Something wrong, Papa?”
“Not today, child. Just had something in my eye, that’s all.”
He wiped at his eye again and then blew his nose before folding
his white cotton fabric and putting it back into his pocket.

“Well,” Isabel said, “since Lena is fixing our breakfast, I’ll
just make some muffins to tide us over and may be the boys
will want to eat an apple with their glass of milk since they have
to milk the cow and take care of the outside chores before we
go. They will really be hungry, and it will take almost an hour
to get to Jim and Lena’s house.”

“That sounds reasonable to me. Just don’t tell Lena,” Papa
said. “She’ll skin me alive if she knows I let ya’ll eat before we
got to her house.”

Isabel rushed to get everyone dressed and ready for the trip.

No sooner was she ready to step out the door than one twin
needed changing and then the next. When everyone was finally
squeezed into the seats of the Tin Lizzie and on the road to
Roanoke, Isabel breathed a sigh of relief and enjoyed the view.
She hoped it would push back the beautiful memories of her
last birthday with Mama.