Sue Spitulnik

Creative Lady



Money or Time

Three Sundays in a row Lexi found a gift bag for Emma on the front porch. In exasperation she called her mother. “I appreciate Grandma’s generosity but she’s buying Emma newborn stuff that she’s too big for. And I don’t get the surprise factor bit.”

Tessa sighed. “I guess mother is trying to make up for not spoiling you as a baby. She means well.”

“I figured, but it’s a waste. I’ll invite her to lunch. I can tell her we would rather have her visit.”

“An invitation to babysit would send her over the moon.”

“Right. Got it.”

Written in response to Charli Mills April 15, 2021, prompt at Carrot Ranch Literary: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story that seeds generosity. Who is generous and why? Think of generosity as planting a future outcome. Go where the prompt leads!

Jester the Hero

Humans! Geesh! Last week that cute baby tried to twist my ear off. It hurt. A quiet growl escaped. The big people went ballistic, and the baby cried. I heard the words: chain, pound, and vet.

This week I growled and barked in that active kid’s face. She screamed and cried in anger. Her grandmother grabbed her and calmed her. Others praised and petted me, called me a hero dog, and even gave me a raw hamburger patty for supper. I guess it had to do with the fact I kept the little one from climbing up the stairs.

Written in response to Charli Mills April 8, 2021, prompt at Carrot Ranch Literary: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story that “rethinks the hero.” Define the hero, comparing or contrasting to the classic definition. Break the mold. What happens to the hero in the cave? Is it epic or everyday? Is there resistance or acceptance? Go where the prompt leads!

The Baby’s Nickname – flash fiction

A month after Lexi and Adam, Tessa’s daughter and son-in-law, were settled in their new house, Emma got baptized with families present. Michael’s youth choir sang two children’s dedication songs and Adam’s parents were thrilled to see how he was accepted into the close-knit group. At the luncheon, Lexi tolerated her grandmother’s proprietorship over the baby just so long then retrieved her so Adam’s family could cuddle her too. Adam’s grandfather beamed at her and said, “So this is the new blossom that made our family grow.” And that’s how the pink-cheeked infant came to be called Emma Blossom.

Written in response to Charli Mills July 2, 2020, prompt at Carrot Ranch Literary: In 99 words (no more, no less), write a story that includes the word blossom. You can use the word as a noun or a verb, or even as a name. How does it fit into your story? Go where the prompt leads!

Different Buttons

My cell rang. “Hi Mom.”

“Oh good, you’re home?”

“It’s the babies nap time. You knew I would be.”

“I just finished trimming the hedge and I’m exhausted. One of those Easy Buttons would help with that job. I won’t be able to lift my arms again today.”

“Mom, your hedge consists of five bushes.”

“I know, but I’m not as young as I used to be.”

“You’re starting to push my buttons, what do you want?”

“A dinner invite.”

“But aren’t your arms are too tired to hold the baby.”

“Maybe not that tired. I’ll bring ice cream.”

In response to Charli Mills July 5, 2018, prompt from Carrot Ranch Literary: In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story that includes buttons. You can use the word plural or singular in different expressions, or focus on how buttons relate to a story. Go where the prompt leads.

What Was Your Favorite Stuffed Animal?

Kenny Chesney sings a song that has a line in it telling about a little girl dragging her teddy bear up the stairs.  If you are a parent I’m sure you could quickly name your child’s favorite stuffed animal.  If you are a younger person you may still have your childhood teddy bear or critter of choice.  I had two: one was a bear with a music box that played Brahms Lullaby and the other was an octopus.

I know a young man who has finished graduate school and is a sports announcer in a good size city.  He worked in our town for a while, and a stuffed cat from his alma mater came with him.  When he left town, I had the privilege of taking him to the airport; the stuffed cat was on top of his carry on bag, never out of sight.  It represented home.

My grandson’s most favorite stuffed animal, of way too many, was a tiny beige dog he named Pongo.  It was the one thing he had to have with him or he won’t go to sleep.  Pongo accidentally ended up in the laundry at my house once.  I had to take him home at 10PM after searching for him for an hour.  Anything for your grandchild.

I know two different ladies that at the age of 70+ had a teddy bear on their couch.  When I asked each of them who they got the bear from, sadly, I got the same answer.  “I bought it for myself because no one else ever did.”  When my aunt went into an assisted living facility she was very upset she couldn’t have a cat.  We got her a stuffed one that looked so real other residents complained she had a pet in her room.  When we would visit, we would hold it and pet it because it was really soft. Auntie slept with it on her bed.

I’m sure there is a psychological reason that humans like their teddy bears.  I’m guessing it’s a different for everyone.

Oh, it’s also National Hug Your Boss Day.  With today’s political correctness B.S. and sexual harassment allegations, I wouldn’t suggest doing that.  Maybe give him/her a teddy bear instead.

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