Monthly Archives: March 2015

Food & Fiction Friday: The Hunger Games Edition

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Fresh bread, goat cheese, & blackberries

Welcome to my latest weekly (ish) segment, Food & Fiction Fridays! In the same vein as My Shelf Monday, I will have a weekly post about my two favorite things (other than my family): Food and Fiction! The two have always been linked for me, and I think that might be why I have a strong reaction to books that capitalize on food.

Long ago, in a closet not too far away, I built myself a reading nook. I cleared out whatever stuff I’d been storing in the corner of my closet, laid down blankets and stole pillows from around the house. I got permission to add a lamp (?) or some form of lighting device (I honestly can’t remember what the heck it was!) It was my quiet spot to disappear for a few hours with a book. The bookworm version of a treehouse.

And on the weekends my dad would set up a snack station on the kitchen counter. There was usually sliced cheese, sausage or salami, sometimes a variety of cold cuts, along with fresh bread and some fruits. I would grab a plate, pile it up, and disappear into my closet.

Food and Fiction. The perfect combination!

So today I’m kicking things off with one of my favorite books of all time: The Hunger Games. I realize this seems odd thanks to both title and content of said books, but very early on Katniss and Gale share a pre-reaping meal of fresh bread, goat cheese, basil and blackberries. It sounds delicious, right? We’re only 8 pages into the book and the food has already helped tell the tale of food scarcity, trade, and lack of hope for the people of District 12. The food and the ideas attached to them are something I often think about when The Hunger Games are mentioned.

Plus, I really love fresh bread, goat cheese, basil, and blackberries. It’s really a perfect meal!

Hunger games

So what about you? Did the food (or lack there of) in the Hunger Games have an affect on you? And do you snack when you eat (or is that just me?) Hit me in the comments!

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Magical Match Up: The Leprechaun vs The Tooth Fairy

I write stories with my kids. We write a lot of stories. On the walk home yesterday we got to talking about leprechauns since a sneaky one had caused chaos and havoc in my youngest’s preschool classroom that day. I mentioned that a mischievous leprechaun might come by our house that night. And wouldn’t it be funny if my oldest finally pulled out his two impossibly loose (yet somehow still in his mouth) teeth and then the Tooth Fairy arrived at the same time as the leprechaun. The following silliness ensued:

Magical Match Up: The Leprechaun vs The Tooth Fairy

Magical Match Up-

One night, after weeks and weeks and weeks of my parents begging me to pull out my tooth, it happened. Pop! One wiggle before bed and suddenly the tooth was in my hand. 

We bundled up my little tooth and stuck it inside my little blue tooth pillow. I stuck it under my sleeping pillow, kissed my parents goodnight, and fell asleep. I was excited to find money under my pillow the next morning.

There was only one problem.

One giant. Terrible. Horrible problem. 

Something I hadn’t thought to prepare for. 

It was St. Patrick’s Day Eve.

There’s nothing to worry about! You might be thinking. It’s only St. Patrick’s Day! We all wear green. That’s all there is to it! But you’d be wrong. So very wrong, as I discovered that fateful night. The night the sneaky, tricky, somewhat greedy leprechaun visited my house in search of gold.

You see, it was just after midnight. I was happily snoozing. When suddenly I was awakened by a horrible scuffle. When I opened my eyes I could scarcely believe what I was seeing! The Tooth Fairy was hovering high near my ceiling! She was pink and purple, and there was glitter was everywhere. Her long hair hung in ringlets and her wings flapped faster than a butterfly. She was very beautiful.

She was also very angry.

You see, while she was hovering high in my room, a tiny green man with a very stern face was running around my floor. A leprechaun. The Leprechaun! 

“Ahhhh!” I screamed.

The Tooth Fairy looked at me and wailed. “Now do you see what you’ve done you tiny, greedy man! You’ve woken the child up! He can see us both! You’ve ruined everything!”

I looked back and forth between the Tooth Fairy and The Leprechaun with my comforter pulled high up under my chin trying to decide what to do next. What does one do when they wake up with two magical beings in their room? Run? Hide? Go back to sleep and hope this is all really one crazy dream?

But before I could decide, The Leprechaun charged right at me. I thought he was going to punch me in the nose! Instead, with his lightning fast leprechaun speed, he ran up the wall and leapt at the Tooth Fairy.

“Give me your gold!” he cried. His fingers caught her boots. He dangled as she flew in circles. 

“Never! This is for the children, not you!” She swung him into the wall, then turned and did it again on the opposite wall. With each bang the leprechaun yelled and glitter showered down like rain. My bedroom was sparkling. 

“But I need it! I need the gold! It’s safer with me than these young humans.” 

“Ha! Nothing is safe with you little green man!” She flew straight toward the ground, dragging the leprechaun along the carpet, ramming his head into a wall and flying away when he finally let go. 

The leprechaun looked hurt. Actually, he looked unconscious. What should I do? Should I help him? Hide? Go back to sleep and hope this was a really, really crazy dream?

But before I could decide, the leprechaun hopped up. He was so fast I barely had time to register that he wasn’t hurt before golden flying discs went hurtling through the air. “Stop moving you little pixie!”

“I am not a pixie!” she yelled back, then dodged away from another gold coin. 

The Leprechaun was a really good shot. The coins thudded against my walls. Thump! Thump! Thump! They were making so much noise! Too much noise!

“Shhhh!” I hissed. “You’ll wake up everyone!”

That’s when the Leprechaun landed a good shot. The Tooth Fairy went flying, then dropped to the ground. 

Oh no… I’d accidentally killed the Tooth Fairy by distracting her! 

“Haha! I got her!” The Leprechaun howled. “All her gold is mine at last!”

He crept closer and closer. I had no idea what to do. The Tooth Fairy lay there on the ground hurt or wounded I was sure. She couldn’t defend herself. Would it really be that bad if The Leprechaun took all the gold? He’d leave and we wouldn’t have to worry about him anymore.

But I also wouldn’t get my gold coin. And neither would any of the other kids who’d lost their teeth that night. They would wake up with their old teeth still under their pillows. No magic. No money. No glittery hope for a new day.

I could not let this happen.

“Stop!” I cried, finally leaping out of bed. 

The Leprechaun did stop. I surprised him. Plus I was much, much bigger. In that split second of hesitation the Tooth Fairy jumped back up and whacked The Leprechaun over the head with her wand. “His gold coins are for you to keep.” She waved at the coins The Leprechaun had used as deadly flying saucers.

The coins that were now lying all over my room.

“But what about him? What about you?” I asked.

She smiled brightly. “Oh don’t you worry about me. This isn’t my first encounter with a leprechaun. I’ll just drop him off by the rainbow on my way to the next tooth. Have wonderful dreams my dear and thank you for helping me catch The Leprechaun.”

And with a flash of light and glitter, she was gone. And I was alone in my room, covered in sparkling dust and five golden coins. 

I had a hard time explaining exactly what happened. I’m pretty sure my parents don’t believe me. But there is no way I could ever make up what happened that night. The truth was much crazier than anything my imagination could dream. I mean really, who expects to wake up to a magical match up between The Tooth Fairy and The Leprechaun on St. Patrick’s Day?

Certainly not me.

Magical Match Up: The Leprechaun vs The Tooth Fairy © Alexis Sykes 2015

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