Month: April 2013

As Promised…

… here is the story behind my story:

Last year my younger sister and I began attending a writing class, based on Institute for Excellence in Writing, or IEW. We learned many writing skills, techniques, and literary devises. That helped me to be able to actually write my story, but the idea came from my older brother. You see, he mods computer games, and one of his favorites is Age of Empires. He had created a modded character he called a Phoenix, it trailed fire as it flew, and spat fire to attack. It spawned in “eggs” that were small fires that grew larger as the time for the Falcon to hatch drew near. After hatching, it had three lives. In the first life, it had a weak attack, but many hit-points. After dying and coming back in the same way it originally hatched, it had a higher attack, but less hit-points. If the same thing happened again, it would have few hit-points, but a very high attack. Voila! My story. I worked on the idea, making it stronger in some parts, smoothing it out in others. I found names that mean what I want my characters to be like, wrote down the meanings, and began writing. After I finished the first part, I gave it to several of my friends, my family, and my writing teacher. I got good reports. Everyone like the story, and encouraged me to keep writing. I replied that, while I am going to writing class, I should focus on my homework, rather than writing for fun. Then, my mama told a family friend who makes short movies with his sons, and needed a script writer. Mama told him I wrote, and told him I would get the story to him. I did, and on Tuesday, I talked with him and his wife about making my story into a short movie!! I was expecting to write something different for it, but they liked the story so much they want to do that. I am excited, but I haven’t really figured out the plot. 😛 My friend will help me, and I will probably talk it out with the Ortiz’ (the ones who want to make my story into a movie.) so I can know fully what they are capable of animating.

So, there you have it. 🙂 I hope you enjoyed!


When should I post?

So a friend of mine started a blog. She will be posting every Tuesday. I think that is a good idea, but I need a day. I think I will do Thursday for my blogs. (I have two) I will post about my weeks, what is happening in my walk with God, and how my story is progressing. I will put that at the end of my post tonight. Story behind that on Thursday. 😀

My story is titled “Abelard: Falcon of Fire”. Enjoy!

That looks like fire, I thought. I had been walking through the woods near my home, as I normally did in the mornings–but the sight of fire was certainly not normal.  Concerned, I ran over to the small clearing. I knelt down among the leaves to find that the only thing that was burning was a small, five-inch-long round piece of charcoal. The flames were remarkable– yes, they were about a foot high and were a beautiful golden orange–but that wasn’t why. The flames actually looked, in a fleeting kind of way, like a falcon. They still were flames, though, but why didn’t they burn anything? I stretched my hand towards the flame, wondering if it was warm. It was. Surprised, I mentally recorded every detail; the location, the size and shape of the flames and what they burned, and the color of the flames.


I then moved on, finishing my route through the woods. I have done this nearly every day since my twelfth birthday. It is when I talk to God. I love to marvel at His wonders, and thank Him for Who He is.

Upon returning to our house, I recorded the findings of my walk in my leather-bound prayer journal, and then went to tell my father, Hayden Sheldon.

“Cassandra!” He said, “Do you realize what this might be?”

I looked at him blankly, my mind churning to think. Than it dawned on me. “Father!” I shrieked, “Do you really think so? A Falcon of Fire?”

My father chuckled, “Hush, my dear, the whole house will hear!” Then, seriously, “Yes, Cassie, I think it may be. Watch the flame carefully and tell me if it changes.”

“Yes sir. Shall we tell mother? And Kurt?”

“Of course we shall,” He replied, “Let’s go find them!” Rising, we went to the door and parted. Even though our house is not large, it is still hard to find people. Father searched for my mother Anita, I for my nineteen year old brother Kurt.

I had an idea as to where he might be, so I went to check. I was right. There he was, sitting in our favorite climbing tree in front of the house.

“Kurt!” I called, hoping he’d hear and see me. He did, and waved for me to join him, which I did, despite my sixteen years.

“What is it Cass?” He asked, sensing I had something to say.

I climbed up and settled in before I answered. “I think I may have found an egg.”

“You came up here just to tell me you think you’ve found an egg? That is not the whole story.” He replied with a no-nonsense face, but with a gleam of curiosity in his eyes.

I grinned back, “I think it came from a Falcon of Fire,” simply, like I had found a chicken egg. I loved to tease him. It worked, by the way he responded.  First he stared at me, slightly annoyed. I smiled sweetly in response. Then, his eyes grew wide and he whispered, “For real?”

I nodded, “For real.”

“How big is it? Where did you find it? What color is it?” He said, in an excited whisper.

I described what I’d seen. He asked me to show him, so we got down and I took him to the spot. I was amazed again. It was so beautiful. We looked for a bit, and then we heard our parents calling us. We hurried down the path, found them, and started back down the path to the clearing.

“So,” My mother said as we walked, “do you really think you’ve found an egg from a Falcon?”

I nodded, “But we won’t know for sure until it hatches, if it does.”

My father spoke up, “From what I’ve read, I’m quite sure it is a Falcon of Fire; a phoenix, you might say.” As he was speaking, we came to the clearing.

My mother caught her breath. “It‘s beautiful,” she breathed, a smile wreathing her face. My father was speechless. He stood, slowly shaking his head in wonder. Then, he slowly walked to the fire and ran his finger through the flame. The birdlike shape in the flame seemed to bite his hand. He jerked it out and sucked it.

“Sorry,” he mumbled.

I giggled. “Was I the only one who saw that?” Everyone shook their heads in wonder. I then grew sober, “Listen, we can’t keep coming here. And we cannot tell anyone outside of the family. We don’t want to disturb the nest,”

My father agreed, “We won’t. And we won’t come here but once a week, if at all. Except you, Cassie, and you must not come any oftener than every other day. Less would be better.”

We nodded. There was a little pause, then, my mother, realizing the time said, “Well. This is very interesting, but we must be getting on with our day.”

We laughed, and walked back to the house. My father and Kurt set out for work, while my mother and I went on with our routine of cooking and cleaning, caring, comforting and coaching.

After lunch, I headed outside with my next three siblings, their ages fifteen, thirteen, and twelve, to go work in the garden, then to bring home our two cows, Bess and Blossom, then to ride our horses. We were all very close, and I trusted them with my secret. They were very excited to think that I trusted them enough to tell them something so important and wanted to go and see, but I explained to them that we couldn’t disturb it again. Riding was our favorite time. We would call over the horses, put their bridles on and ride around, chasing and racing each other. I loved my horse. Her name was Adeline. She was a Gypsy-Vanner Arabian cross, with the coloring of a Vanner, but the shape– though larger–of an Arabian. After riding for an hour, we headed back inside to get supper ready before my father and Kurt got home from their work.

Guess what I did!

On Sunday, April 14th, I went with two of my brothers to my friend’s dressage riding instructor’s farm to help put in an herb garden.


After we were done, my friend brought her horse that boards there into the arena so we (My oldest brother, my friend, and I) could take turns on the horse, Meridian, an Arabian, flea-bitten, (White, with brown flecks) gelding.


(Isn’t he pretty?! ;))

We were sitting on him bareback, with a lead rope and halter, with my friend Suki (her real name is Susannah, but everyone calls her Suki. She is not Japanese, fyi.) standing right there, so he wouldn’t run off, we hoped. When it was my turn, I held the lead rope draped across his neck, and he was walking, thus making the rope bump his shoulder, which made him think I was urging him to go faster, so he went, at a canter. Now, I have never cantered before, so to do so for the first time, bareback, with only a lead rope and halter to guide him… yeah. I scrambled to get the rope off of his neck, and grabbed his mane tightly with both my hands while holding on for all I was worth with my legs. I didn’t fall, but when I turned him, (thankfully he was trained western as well as dressage, and responds to neck-reining, or leaning the reins, or rope, on his neck, the way you want him to turn.) I had to let go of his mane with one hand while leaning slightly to the side to get him to turn. I didn’t fall off, though my brother thought I was going to. After cantering around once, he finally slowed down to a trot, a walk; finally, he stopped in front of my friend. I told her I wasn’t going to get off yet, but when he started walking I realized that I was too shaky to stay on. So I slipped off and sat down on a nearby chair. All the people who had seen me were thankful I was okay, and impressed that I had stayed on. I didn’t get into trouble, and neither did my friend. Thankfully.  Everyone I told the story to was shocked and impressed.
Overall, I had fun. 😀

Moral of story: Don’t walk on a bareback horse with only a lead rope and halter that is dangling across its neck. Bad things can happen. 😉

The Original Cinderella Story

So for my writing class homework, I read the Cinderella story written by the Grimm brothers. It is very different from the Disney version. I thought you might like it, so here you go! Enjoy!

The wife of a rich man fell sick, and as she felt that her end was drawing near, she called her only daughter to her bedside and said, “Dear child, be good and pious, and then the good God will always protect thee, and I will look down on thee from heaven and be near thee.” Thereupon she closed her eyes and departed. Every day the maiden went out to her mother’s grave, and wept, and she remained pious and good. When winter came the snow spread a white sheet over the grave, and when the spring sun had drawn it off again, the man had taken another wife.
The woman had brought two daughters into the house with her, who were beautiful and fair of face, but vile and black of heart. Now began a bad time for the poor step-child. “Is the stupid goose to sit in the parlour with us?” said they. “He who wants to eat bread must earn it; out with the kitchen-wench.” They took her pretty clothes away from her, put an old grey bedgown on her, and gave her wooden shoes. “Just look at the proud princess, how decked out she is!” they cried, and laughed, and led her into the kitchen. There she had to do hard work from morning till night, get up before daybreak, carry water, light fires, cook and wash. Besides this, the sisters did her every imaginable injury — they mocked her and emptied her peas and lentils into the ashes, so that she was forced to sit and pick them out again. In the evening when she had worked till she was weary she had no bed to go to, but had to sleep by the fireside in the ashes. And as on that account she always looked dusty and dirty, they called her Cinderella. It happened that the father was once going to the fair, and he asked his two step-daughters what he should bring back for them. “Beautiful dresses,” said one, “Pearls and jewels,” said the second. “And thou, Cinderella,” said he, “what wilt thou have?” “Father, break off for me the first branch which knocks against your hat on your way home.” So he bought beautiful dresses, pearls and jewels for his two step-daughters, and on his way home, as he was riding through a green thicket, a hazel twig brushed against him and knocked off his hat. Then he broke off the branch and took it with him. When he reached home he gave his step-daughters the things which they had wished for, and to Cinderella he gave the branch from the hazel-bush. Cinderella thanked him, went to her mother’s grave and planted the branch on it, and wept so much that the tears fell down on it and watered it. And it grew, however, and became a handsome tree. Thrice a day Cinderella went and sat beneath it, and wept and prayed, and a little white bird always came on the tree, and if Cinderella expressed a wish, the bird threw down to her what she had wished for.

It happened, however, that the King appointed a festival which was to last three days, and to which all the beautiful young girls in the country were invited, in order that his son might choose himself a bride. When the two step-sisters heard that they too were to appear among the number, they were delighted, called Cinderella and said, “Comb our hair for us, brush our shoes and fasten our buckles, for we are going to the festival at the King’s palace.” Cinderella obeyed, but wept, because she too would have liked to go with them to the dance, and begged her step-mother to allow her to do so. “Thou go, Cinderella!” said she; “Thou art dusty and dirty and wouldst go to the festival? Thou hast no clothes and shoes, and yet wouldst dance!” As, however, Cinderella went on asking, the step-mother at last said, “I have emptied a dish of lentils into the ashes for thee, if thou hast picked them out again in two hours, thou shalt go with us.” The maiden went through the back-door into the garden, and called, “You tame pigeons, you turtle-doves, and all you birds beneath the sky, come and help me to pick

“The good into the pot,
The bad into the crop.”
Then two white pigeons came in by the kitchen-window, and afterwards the turtle-doves, and at last all the birds beneath the sky, came whirring and crowding in, and alighted amongst the ashes. And the pigeons nodded with their heads and began pick, pick, pick, pick, and the rest began also pick, pick, pick, pick, and gathered all the good grains into the dish. Hardly had one hour passed before they had finished, and all flew out again. Then the girl took the dish to her step-mother, and was glad, and believed that now she would be allowed to go with them to the festival. But the step-mother said, “No, Cinderella, thou hast no clothes and thou canst not dance; thou wouldst only be laughed at.” And as Cinderella wept at this, the step-mother said, “If thou canst pick two dishes of lentils out of the ashes for me in one hour, thou shalt go with us.” And she thought to herself, “That she most certainly cannot do.” When the step-mother had emptied the two dishes of lentils amongst the ashes, the maiden went through the back-door into the garden and cried, You tame pigeons, you turtle-doves, and all you birds under heaven, come and help me to pick

“The good into the pot,
The bad into the crop.”
Then two white pigeons came in by the kitchen-window, and afterwards the turtle-doves, and at length all the birds beneath the sky, came whirring and crowding in, and alighted amongst the ashes. And the doves nodded with their heads and began pick, pick, pick, pick, and the others began also pick, pick, pick, pick, and gathered all the good seeds into the dishes, and before half an hour was over they had already finished, and all flew out again. Then the maiden carried the dishes to the step-mother and was delighted, and believed that she might now go with them to the festival. But the step-mother said, “All this will not help thee; thou goest not with us, for thou hast no clothes and canst not dance; we should be ashamed of thee!” On this she turned her back on Cinderella, and hurried away with her two proud daughters.
As no one was now at home, Cinderella went to her mother’s grave beneath the hazel-tree, and cried,

“Shiver and quiver, little tree,
Silver and gold throw down over me.”
Then the bird threw a gold and silver dress down to her, and slippers embroidered with silk and silver. She put on the dress with all speed, and went to the festival. Her step-sisters and the step-mother however did not know her, and thought she must be a foreign princess, for she looked so beautiful in the golden dress. They never once thought of Cinderella, and believed that she was sitting at home in the dirt, picking lentils out of the ashes. The prince went to meet her, took her by the hand and danced with her. He would dance with no other maiden, and never left loose of her hand, and if any one else came to invite her, he said, “This is my partner.”
She danced till it was evening, and then she wanted to go home. But the King’s son said, “I will go with thee and bear thee company,” for he wished to see to whom the beautiful maiden belonged. She escaped from him, however, and sprang into the pigeon-house. The King’s son waited until her father came, and then he told him that the stranger maiden had leapt into the pigeon-house. The old man thought, “Can it be Cinderella?” and they had to bring him an axe and a pickaxe that he might hew the pigeon-house to pieces, but no one was inside it. And when they got home Cinderella lay in her dirty clothes among the ashes, and a dim little oil-lamp was burning on the mantle-piece, for Cinderella had jumped quickly down from the back of the pigeon-house and had run to the little hazel-tree, and there she had taken off her beautiful clothes and laid them on the grave, and the bird had taken them away again, and then she had placed herself in the kitchen amongst the ashes in her grey gown.

Next day when the festival began afresh, and her parents and the step-sisters had gone once more, Cinderella went to the hazel-tree and said —

“Shiver and quiver, my little tree,
Silver and gold throw down over me.”
Then the bird threw down a much more beautiful dress than on the preceding day. And when Cinderella appeared at the festival in this dress, every one was astonished at her beauty. The King’s son had waited until she came, and instantly took her by the hand and danced with no one but her. When others came and invited her, he said, “She is my partner.” When evening came she wished to leave, and the King’s son followed her and wanted to see into which house she went. But she sprang away from him, and into the garden behind the house. Therein stood a beautiful tall tree on which hung the most magnificent pears. She clambered so nimbly between the branches like a squirrel that the King’s son did not know where she was gone. He waited until her father came, and said to him, “The stranger-maiden has escaped from me, and I believe she has climbed up the pear-tree.” The father thought, “Can it be Cinderella?” and had an axe brought and cut the tree down, but no one was on it. And when they got into the kitchen, Cinderella lay there amongst the ashes, as usual, for she had jumped down on the other side of the tree, had taken the beautiful dress to the bird on the little hazel-tree, and put on her grey gown.
On the third day, when the parents and sisters had gone away, Cinderella went once more to her mother’s grave and said to the little tree —

“Shiver and quiver, my little tree,
Silver and gold throw down over me.”
And now the bird threw down to her a dress which was more splendid and magnificent than any she had yet had, and the slippers were golden. And when she went to the festival in the dress, no one knew how to speak for astonishment. The King’s son danced with her only, and if any one invited her to dance, he said, “She is my partner.”
When evening came, Cinderella wished to leave, and the King’s son was anxious to go with her, but she escaped from him so quickly that he could not follow her. The King’s son had, however, used a strategem, and had caused the whole staircase to be smeared with pitch, and there, when she ran down, had the maiden’s left slipper remained sticking. The King’s son picked it up, and it was small and dainty, and all golden. Next morning, he went with it to the father, and said to him, “No one shall be my wife but she whose foot this golden slipper fits.” Then were the two sisters glad, for they had pretty feet. The eldest went with the shoe into her room and wanted to try it on, and her mother stood by. But she could not get her big toe into it, and the shoe was too small for her. Then her mother gave her a knife and said, “Cut the toe off; when thou art Queen thou wilt have no more need to go on foot.” The maiden cut the toe off, forced the foot into the shoe, swallowed the pain, and went out to the King’s son. Then he took her on his his horse as his bride and rode away with her. They were, however, obliged to pass the grave, and there, on the hazel-tree, sat the two pigeons and cried,

“Turn and peep, turn and peep,
There’s blood within the shoe,
The shoe it is too small for her,
The true bride waits for you.”
Then he looked at her foot and saw how the blood was streaming from it. He turned his horse round and took the false bride home again, and said she was not the true one, and that the other sister was to put the shoe on. Then this one went into her chamber and got her toes safely into the shoe, but her heel was too large. So her mother gave her a knife and said, “Cut a bit off thy heel; when thou art Queen thou wilt have no more need to go on foot.” The maiden cut a bit off her heel, forced her foot into the shoe, swallowed the pain, and went out to the King’s son. He took her on his horse as his bride, and rode away with her, but when they passed by the hazel-tree, two little pigeons sat on it and cried,
“Turn and peep, turn and peep,
There’s blood within the shoe
The shoe it is too small for her,
The true bride waits for you.”
He looked down at her foot and saw how the blood was running out of her shoe, and how it had stained her white stocking. Then he turned his horse and took the false bride home again. “This also is not the right one,” said he, “have you no other daughter?” “No,” said the man, “There is still a little stunted kitchen-wench which my late wife left behind her, but she cannot possibly be the bride.” The King’s son said he was to send her up to him; but the mother answered, “Oh, no, she is much too dirty, she cannot show herself!” He absolutely insisted on it, and Cinderella had to be called. She first washed her hands and face clean, and then went and bowed down before the King’s son, who gave her the golden shoe. Then she seated herself on a stool, drew her foot out of the heavy wooden shoe, and put it into the slipper, which fitted like a glove. And when she rose up and the King’s son looked at her face he recognized the beautiful maiden who had danced with him and cried, “That is the true bride!” The step-mother and the two sisters were terrified and became pale with rage; he, however, took Cinderella on his horse and rode away with her. As they passed by the hazel-tree, the two white doves cried —
“Turn and peep, turn and peep,
No blood is in the shoe,
The shoe is not too small for her,
The true bride rides with you,”
and when they had cried that, the two came flying down and placed themselves on Cinderella’s shoulders, one on the right, the other on the left, and remained sitting there.
When the wedding with the King’s son had to be celebrated, the two false sisters came and wanted to get into favour with Cinderella and share her good fortune. When the betrothed couple went to church, the elder was at the right side and the younger at the left, and the pigeons pecked out one eye of each of them. Afterwards as they came back, the elder was at the left, and the younger at the right, and then the pigeons pecked out the other eye of each. And thus, for their wickedness and falsehood, they were punished with blindness as long as they lived.