"Katie Ann are you excited to be going home"?? Oh yes I am, but I am also nervous. I feel so bad about leaving Ma and Pa at Christmas. I know they are missing me so; and Ma will be crying herself to sleep at night. I had heard them whispering at night about Pa working on a doll house for me, and Ma was making me a rag doll family. We always have a tree like you guys and string popcorn for it. I hope they put the tree up. Ma and I picked berries in July and apples in August, we put them up to make pies and cakes for Christmas. What you don"t know is that Christmas is my Birthday. I was born at 5 minutes passed Midnight on Dec. 25th.
What fun you must have!!! I know they will be missing all this. I will tell Pa everything tonight at the evening meal and he will hurry to get us there in time. Just think we will get to be apart of all this. I already feel like you are my sister. I love you Katie Ann. "I love you to Mandy". I love your whole family'!!!! You all have treated me so good since your Ma and Pa found me. I was a little scared in the woods that day when you and your dog were out. "I know we were too.
I am going to use this time working on my gifts. I think that is why Ma insisted on Pa going home before we left out to get you home. I think she not only put up some of the supplies, I think she and Pa gathered our Christmas things up. I know they gathered extra bedding for the trip, and dry firewood, her cooking kettle, some cured ham and bacon from the smokehouse. I think even though this is sad you ran away, we will have fun getting there. I love looking up at the sky at night. Me too. Joseph likes helping Pa with the team. Makes him feel all grown up.
I hear Pa reining in the team, must be time to make camp for the night. "Children jump down and grab my cooking pot, We need to get supper started. I have allot I want to do tonight. Joseph take this bucket and get some water out of the water barrel. Pa did you bring enough dry wood to start a fire. Yes Ma, I am working on it now. Thanks, Girls you get busy peeling those potatoes, carrots, and onions. I broth some vegetable stock so we can make us a good soup for supper. I will start rolling out the dough for biscuits. I brought some dried peaches along too. I will make fried pies for tonight and we can have the rest for breakfast tomorrow.
"Ma that was a good supper"! Thanks Joseph. Did you get enough? I sure did Ma. I need to look around and gather some more dry wood for the night fire and the cooking one in the morning. You are such a good son!! Now girls you set the dish pan over the fire to warm the water to wash the dishes in. After that take out the bar of soap and heat more water, so you can wash and get ready for bed. "Ma after our chores and baths may we work on our Christmas gifts for an hour before bed. That is fine but only an hour we need to get up before daylight and get ready to start out.
Ma I want to read for a bit, have you got something you want to do? Yes Pa some last minute gifts to finish up. I will set by the fire for a bit then Ma and will be to bed in a while. Joseph cut some fine branches for us to spread our bedding over. He and I will sleep by the fire, you can sleep in the wagon with the girls. Well good-night then Pa.