By Andy Bozeman and Debbie Harris
First MorningSleepy eyes opened slowly to see lace curtains glowing in golden first light: sunbeams shining through the bedroom window. As the beams pushed across the room, everything was awash with amber radiance. “Oh my, how beautiful,” Whisper Mouse said as she began her first stretch, under the covers. “First light, first stretch…” She stretched and combined it with a slow yawn. “The first morning in my new house.” Stretch… yawn… big smile.
Her bed was a lace-edged handkerchief folded in half, then half again to make a little mattress the perfect size for a little mouse. Another handkerchief lay on top for cover. Tossed, flat, over the bed it could be just right as a thin sheet when only a little cover was needed. Folding it in half made it a blanket for cooler nights. Folded in half, yet again, it became a toasty-warm quilt for nights when the Sun’s heat left the sky. Twice folded and tucked in at the edges made it a snuggly-warm comforter, perfect to sleep well on freezing nights when howling winds blew icy rain, or when snow blanketed the meadow.
Whisper’s first night at home was also the first night of Autumn, so it was a little chilly. A long stretch with arms extended to full length made her little hands reach out from under the cover’s warmth. Cold air gripped tiny fingers. “Oh my,” she gasped sleepily, quickly pulling her hands back under the cover. “I’m not sure I want to get out of my warm bed.” But she didn’t mean it.
Peeking out from underneath her ‘quilt’ and gazing around, her excitement began to build. “This is my bed,” she smiled a little. “This is my room,” she grinned. “This is my house,” she giggled. Suddenly, she threw off the quilt and stood up, right in the middle of the bed, waved her arms and danced on the mattress, and laughed as she shouted, “I’m HOME!!!”
In her excitement, she tightly closed her tiny fists and hugged her arms in snuggly, and giggled and grinned and pranced her little feet in the bed covers, until her toes got tangled up in the quilt, and to keep from losing her balance she had to sit down, quickly, or fall out of the bed. She sat down.
The morning sunshine was already warming her room, its golden light becoming brighter every second. Dark shadows gave way to daylight. There, in the brightening light of day, Whisper could see all the wonderful things that made her house a very special home.
Whisper lived in a house shaped like a mushroom. She had chosen that shape because it could blend in with the forest, and it would make it hard for other animals and people to notice it. Even though it had a front door and two windows, which made it stand out just a little, it was painted with just the right colors to match other real mushrooms, nearby, and it was built among the roots at the trunk of a large tree, which helped protect it from storms, and hide it from the hunting eyes of dangerous animals which would like to eat a mouse.
The front door had a cover to keep the rain and snow off. The door opened into a large room which made up almost the whole stem of the mushroom. A window, filled with bits of tinted glass, made pretty colors in the room when sunlight would shine through it.
‘Upstairs’ was inside the broad cap of the mushroom, which was also the roof. This is where Whisper had her bed. Another little window on the roof made her bedroom bright and cheerful on sunny days. A balcony circled all the way around the center of the cap, and allowed a nice view into the big room, below, which was divided into spaces where she had a tiny kitchen with a sewing thimble for a sink under the colored glass window; a place to sit and have tea and read stories before bedtime; and a pantry to store food. Of course, her favorite food was kept in a cheese-keep, a special box that her grandpa built.
Soon, she would have her own table and chairs! Someday, all her friends would fill up the house for wonderful tea parties, and she would serve tiny bits of bread and cheese.
“Cheese,” thought Whisper, smacking her lips. “It’s time for breakfast.”
She climbed down a ladder: six mouse-sized rungs. In the big room, straight across from the front door was another door. It opened into the Pantry. A broom, just the right size for a little mouse to sweep with, leaned in the corner where shelves came together. Kernels of corn, wrapped in a folded leaf, sat on one shelf. On another shelf bits of bread were in a half a walnut shell covered by a thin piece of tree bark. A few pieces of different kinds of nuts, like pecans and almonds, rested in a basket woven from strands of moss; and just across from the door, right in the center of the middle shelf, in easy reach, inside a special box made by her grandpa was…guess what.
From the Authors:
Andy Bozeman and Debbie Harris want you to see every episode of Whisper’s stories. You can also follow along on this blog and search for WHISPER :