Pez dispenser complete with strawberry and grape refills.

Check.

The socks with the little red pom-poms on them.

Check.

My box of 68 crayons minus the purple one Scruffy ate last week.

Check.

The bright yellow boots to wear in case it rains.

Check.

Security blank.

Check.

Mr. Teddy with the missing eye.

Che…

Wait. Where’s Mr. Teddy? He was right here on the bed, I’m sure of it.

I drop the backpack onto the bed and get down on my hands and knees. Sticking my head under the bed, I suddenly came face to face with Mr. Teddy. His one good eye was staring back at me, accusing me of trying to leave him behind.

“Never Mr. Teddy!” I told him reaching for his tattered old body.

Suddenly, I heard a loud noise.  Surprised by it, I raise my head quickly, forgetting it was still under the bed. Crack! The sound of my head hitting the bed frame echoes in my ears. Tears flood to my eyes, but I quickly wipe them away. Only babies cry, not big girls like me!

I crawl out from under the bed rubbing the bump that was now growing on my head. I could still hear the sound, a high-pitched wailing, but it quickly died down as I heard my Mom making those silly hushing sounds.

“Humph!” I think to myself, “All babies do are cry and smell bad. Why does everyone love them so much? Shouldn’t they love me more for being quiet and smelling nice?”

Ok. So maybe I wasn’t always quiet, but I’m still better than that stinky baby!

I lovingly pack Mr. Teddy into my backpack and zip it up on both sides so only his head is sticking out. I wouldn’t want for him to not be able to breathe. I pick up my Barbie flashlight, a gift from Santa this year, and put on my backpack.

Now is the perfect time to get out of the house while Mom’s busy with the annoying little brother.  I tiptoe past the baby’s room and open the back door, thinking to myself, “No one ever asked me if I wanted a baby brother. I might have taken a sister, but Mom said they couldn’t return him.”

Sprinting across the yard I slip on the wet grass and fall forward. I hear the back door opening and I quickly pick myself up. Ignoring the owwie feeling in my hands and knees, I run for the clubhouse. Once inside I peek out the window and I don’t see anyone. Whew! Mom didn’t catch me. I’m safe!

I take off my backpack and sit down on the beanbag chair. This is perfect! I could live here forever and never have to deal with my noisy brother again.

My stomach let out a loud growling sound and I realize it is lunchtime. I snack on some Pez, but it didn’t make my tummy stop rumbling. Looking at my Mickey Mouse watch, I see that I have been gone for a long time, almost as long as an episode of Dora! That’s practically forever! I bet Mom is really missing me by now.  I bet they’re sorry they’ve been ignoring me. I guess it’s ok to go back now.

I pick up my backpack and flashlight and head back into the house. Mom is in the kitchen doing the dishes.  She drops the sponge as I come in the door and rushes to hug me.

“Where have you been? You’ve been gone for so long!” she says squeezing me tightly. “Here, come sit down. I made your favorite peanut butter and banana sandwich. For dessert, you can have some of the cookies I just finished baking.”

I sit at the table and take a bite of the sandwich. It is soft and gooey, just the way I like it. Peanut butter and banana sandwiches are the best!

Mom brings over a small plate of warm chocolate chip cookies and a glass of milk. My favorite treat! She gives me a big hug and kisses me on the cheek.

This running away stuff is ok, but the coming back home again is even better!

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