Wet and Aggressive Corella challenges Magpie

Wet and Aggressive Corella challenges Magpie

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Words for Wednesday


This meme was started by Delores a long time ago.  Week after week she provided us with challenging prompts.    Computer issues led her to bow out for a while and I took over.  When Delores' absence looked like being more permanent I begged and cajoled for other volunteers to share providing the prompts, and Words for Wednesday became a movable feast.  Delores discontinued her blog for a while, but she has returned, and we are grateful.. 

Essentially the aim is to encourage us to write.  Each week we are given a choice of prompts: which can be words, phrases, music or an image.   What we do with those prompts is up to us:  a short story, prose, a song, a poem, or treating them with ignore...  We can use some or all of the prompts.  I have purloined borrowed an image which Lee gave us last month.  Thanks Lee.

Some of us put our creation in comments on the post, and others post on their own blog.  I would really like it if as many people as possible joined into this fun meme.  If you are posting on your own blog - let me know so that I, and other participants, can come along and applaud.


This month the prompts I will be providing the prompts here.  The prompts will be here next month too, but will be provided by Margaret Adamson and her friend Sue Fulton.  Her prompts will include photographs taken by her friend Bill.  

As always, I am hunting for more people to challenge us.  Delores and River have volunteered, and I have an extra month of prompts from Margaret et al, but would like more.  If you are able to play please let me know in the comments (including which month would suit you best).

This week's prompts are:


  1. abacus
  2. bookshelf
  3. cursory
  4. delicate
  5. eclipse
  6. finery

And/or

  1. gigantic
  2. healthy
  3. innocuous
  4. jaundiced
  5. kitchen
  6. linger

104 comments:

  1. Your words are always challenging.

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    1. Susan Kane: I am sure that you are more than up to the challenge.

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  2. It does sound like fun Child.

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    1. donna baker: It is. Some day I hope you will join us.

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  3. Two sets of words that lead me in two different directions...I wonder how I can manage to bring them all together.

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    1. only slightly confused? Two stories? I wait with interest.

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  4. I love my kitchen where I spent a lot of time

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    1. Gosia k: Kitchens are wonderful places aren't they?

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  5. A gigantic innocuous banana slug lingered in the doorway of the kitchen. He appeared jaundiced although he was quite healthy. With a cursory gaze at the slug she promptly exited to the library feeling much more comfortable among the bookshelves or playing abacus. Her delicate features and wardrobe of finery eclipsed the slimy hazard in the next room.

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    1. Linda Starr: Until I started playing in the blogosphere I hadn't even heard of a banana slug. I would love to see one. I do like your use of the prompts.

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    2. I am impressed! That is so good :)

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    3. Linda your are very clever and did a great job with the words. I hate slugs of any kind. Yuk!

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  6. Not sure I understand, but a cursory glance at my bookshelf reveals a place where an abacus or ornament could fit but no delicate finery could eclipse the appeal of the words that lie alongside. Am I close to comprehending this game?

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    1. Andrew MacLaren-Scott: You have nailed it.

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    2. Wow...all in one sentence. I am humbled. Welcome to the game.

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  7. With a jaundiced eye she did a cursory glance around the kitchen, then let her sight linger for a brief moment on the abacus underneath the dining chair." Who the hell took that off the bookshelf and left it there?" she wondered.She remembered the old saying about the cat being away and the mice playing. This mess looked like more than just some rodent party. On second thought it looked like a couple of dirty rats were responsible for this.
    She had been gone a total of 3 days and walked back into this mayhem? Her instructions were quite clear, No guests in the house and no party. She figured they would probably have a few friends in for a movie night, but the state of this room alone led her to think it might have been quite a bit more than that,
    She noticed a gigantic stack of dirty barware in the sink and some sort of delicate tissue thin adornment hanging from the lower branch of her very healthy weeping fig. A closer inspection revealed it was the Victoria's Secret type of finery. Barware in the sink and underwear on the tree. That alone quashed all belief that this was some innocuous school chum get together. She thought she had raised them to be a little smarter. All kids were supposed to know to clean up before Mom got home so there would at least be some plausible deniability if they were ever questioned.
    Her next assignment was next week, an overnight desert stay to shoot the upcoming lunar eclipse. Even though the twins were 17, it looked like Grams would be the designated baby sitter, after all stupidity has a price.


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    1. Anne in the kitchen: Love it. And it is reminiscent of the scenes when my parents and I arrived home after a weekend leaving my much older brothers to their own devices...

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    2. Anne...you already had an advantage...you were already in the kitchen!! :)

      I love this! It made me smile...well done, not only for the smile! :)

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    3. I love this Anne, and remember now how glad I was to never know what my tribe got up to when I wasn't home.

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    4. Ha! Underwear in the tree. I love it.

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    1. Marie Smith: No. I didn't find it easy either.

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  9. On a good day I watch the news with cynical and jaundiced eyes. Even at a cursory glance it is easy to see who benefits from the policies designed to make the country (whichever country) great. And it isn't me, or anyone I know. People with gigantic egos, clad in expensive finery, knowing what is best for people they will never meet, whose experiences they do not share. When and why did we decide that fat profits are a definition of success?
    On a bad day? The evil and ugliness fills me with fear and rage. Fear it will eclipse and swallow all that is good, beautiful and sane in the world. Rage that they get away with it. Time and time again.
    It isn't healthy for me to linger in either of those mind sets. So, in an ongoing effort to maintain my delicate equilibrium I step away, and return to more innocuous pursuits. The kitchen, the garden, perusing my groaning bookshelves and trying hard not to yearn for the days when the abacus was the most complicated machine available...

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    1. I think the latest obscenity might have something to do with the direction I took this week.

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    2. I feared it would cause me to do so, too, EC. I'm been in heightened state of despair, depression - and anger; every emotion except those connected to love and happiness - since yesterday morning when the news broke.

      What you've written is great. :)

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    3. Understand exactly! We were fortunate to hear the commencement address at our son's graduation this week were the speaker told all the grads that optimism is a radical way of life. I plan on being a radical as much as possible, even when everything around me says otherwise.

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    4. I read your first sentence and recalled the tragedy on the news last night.
      Well written and well done EC.

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    5. Emotional and well said. The evil and ugliness fills all of us with fear and rage:-(

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    6. Well, well written, EC:) It got under my skin and gave me an emotional reaction.

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  10. Here I go....

    "The cafe looked INNOCUOUS enough, insipid and uninspiring in every way, from the grubby floor tiles to the dark, unattractive ceiling.

    The decor lacked FINERY. She was sure the word wasn’t in the owner’s vocabulary.

    A GIGANTIC BOOKSHELF half-filled with tattered and dusty hard-cover books and an odd assortment of unattractive ornaments stood languishing against the end wall. A round table beside the bookcase held a chess board and pieces, along with what looked like an antique Chinese ABACUS.

    With a wry smile she wondered if that’s how they added up the accounts in this dingy, dank hole of a place!

    Taking a CURSORY look around, her JAUNDICED view of such eating establishments was validated.

    Her usual HEALTHY appetite had rapidly disintegrated. Her DELICATE approach when giving restaurant critiques had disappeared along with her appetite. Both had run off screaming, hand in hand to greener, more appetising pastures!

    An off-putting, greasy aroma emanated from the KITCHEN. She wouldn’t LINGER long, having already decided her visit was going to be short and not-so-sweet.

    There was only two ways this was going to pan out once her review was published. The operators of the eatery would either have to pick up their act, and pick it up immediately, or her unforgiving revelations would bring about the ECLIPSE of the business.

    What happened after this was the owner’s choice."

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    1. Lee: I suspect that an eclipse is about to happen. A total eclipse...

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    2. It's hard to overcome a truly bad review.

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    3. Or perhaps the owner just hasn't realised how low things have sunk, a bad review might be just the kick start he needs.
      This is a good one Lee. The beginnings of a turn-around story.

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    4. I doesn't sound like there is much hope for the business. Great job Lee.

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    5. Sounds like she's gonna 'tell it like it is'. Don't think I want to eat there either. Great job.

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    6. Great, Lee!
      I'm with EC. I think an eclipse is about to happen:)

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  11. The results of this writing challenge with those words should be fun to read. :)

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    1. Cherie Reich: They are. Each and every week.

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  12. Ha Ha! Good luck everyone! I have to wash out my delicate
    eclipse finery now :)

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    1. Cloudia: Hang your delicate eclipse finery in the light of the moon. And thank you.

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  13. I kept an abacus up on my bedroom bookshelf.
    It became a delicate cursory
    to eclipse my passion's finery.

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  14. Is the challenge to use both sets of words in one story, or in two? Or is either acceptable?

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    1. messymimi: Welcome. I do hope you will join us. You can use all of the words, or some of the words. One set, both sets, or parts of both sets. It is entirely up to you.

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    2. First set:

      He ran out into the sunshine yelling, "Hey, ma, lookit!" Picking up a stick he'd set near the old well, he threw it like a javelin, laughing.

      "It's a gigantic stick!" he called out, running after it so he could throw it again.

      His mother lingered at the back door, wanting to stay near enough to the kitchen to make sure the beans that were cooking for supper didn't burn.

      Her jaundiced eyes watched his every move, as if she wanted to gobble him up by her looking. His innocuous play was a comfort to her, like balm easing both her mental and physical pains. At least one of her children, she thought, was healthy and happy and might live to grow up.

      Second set:

      He looked like a fop in his finery, the delicate style of dress of the court belying his true abilities. Anyone who took more than a cursory glance at his room, bookshelf full to bursting, an abacus always at the ready, knew that his intelligence eclipsed that of even those who advised the king.

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    3. messymimi you did a great job tackling both sets of words. Welcome:-)

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    4. Thank you so much, Granny Annie!

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    5. messymini: The first is sad and beautiful, and the second very different and an amazing use of the words in such a short piece. Thank you so much for joining us.

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    6. Wow.....I love both of them and each one leads to the potential for more. I'd love to know why her other children didn't make it and what is in the future for our intelligent dandy.

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  15. Well done everyone ...

    All the best Jan

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    1. Lowcarb team member ~ Jan: Thank you.

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    2. Jan you always visit us and read...we appreciate that....why not give it a try yourself?

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  16. uh-oh, thesaurus time. Interesting selection, in alphabetical order too, this is going to be a challenge.

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    1. River: They were in alpha order last week too - you are the only one to notice. I am sure you are up to the challenge, and look forward to seeing what you create.

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    2. This weeks Friday posting is from last week's words, what I do with this week's list will be posted on Saturday.

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  17. Hi EC .. the second set ...:

    Cruel … he made her linger in the jaundiced coloured kitchen … she wanted to be positive and get healthy again … not think of “Gigantic”, the film she’s working on, to be pushed out further beyond 2020 – would she still be well by then … he was definitely not innocuous to her success, he favoured himself.

    Cheers Hilary

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    1. Hilary Melton-Butcher: This is a fascinating snippet. I do hope she gets out of the kitchen. And can resist his efforts.

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    2. I don't know if I could linger long in a jaundiced colored kitchen:-) Good job Hilary.

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    3. Great job.......a film maker locked in a disgusting kitchen.....that would kill inspiration for sure.

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  18. Sumptuous set of words today! Going to put my thinking cap and kettle on...Will be back later if/when I can figure things out :)

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    1. What in the name of Bluwaters is that?

      It’s a calculating device, invented by a people called the Chinese, some 80,000 years ago. They called it an ABACUS.

      What a strange name!

      Everything had names that sound strange to us now – the planet itself was called Earth, beats me why, considering it was three-fourths water even then! The continents themselves were different, there were more of them too, and hundreds of countries and millions of borders and disputes over everything.

      How odd! Who were the Chinese?

      Ah, the Han Chinese - they were the largest ethnic group for many centuries on planet Earth, and China was the one of the largest nations. A powerfully intelligent people – they invented many things, paper for instance.

      What’s paper?

      It’s a material, they used to make sheets of that and write upon them, stories, poems, manuals, journals, recipes they used in their KITCHENS…

      Wow, that must have taken up loads of space!

      Yes, they wrote millions and millions of pages in those few centuries between the invention of writing and its disappearance. Nowadays we can just insert a chip into your epiport, but those days they needed massive amounts of physical space to store those bound up sheets of paper called books. Paper sounds INNOCUOUS but the making of it consumed huge resources, trees and energy, and books took up space. The places they kept a collection were called libraries, and they were filled up floor to ceiling with planks aligned together on which the books rested. A BOOKSHELF that was called. Complex systems existed to track and access the books too – an entire science called library science. Not a CURSORY job, I can tell you!

      Are any of those thingummajigs - books available now?

      Very few. I’m afraid paper was a DELICATE material – couldn’t stand moisture, pests, terribly inflammable too, very fragile generally. Foolish way of storing collective wisdom, yet the humans resisted the electronic, more advanced forms tooth and nail, kept going back to paper books. Some of the more resistant ones complained that electronic formats didn’t have the right smell! Smell, I ask you! But even so, some bright chaps put a whole lot into an electronic storage named Project Gutenberg. But all of it got corrupted and destroyed and all their books and libraries were lost during the Great War.

      Great War?

      Yeah, sometime during those years an irresponsible leader of a powerful nation wanted to make everything great again, not sure for who or what. A JAUNDICED worldview. The humans were intelligent in certain ways and incredibly silly in others. They bickered and quarrelled over resources, they fouled up the environment, they chose their leaders based on emotional reactions, not insight. Not exactly a HEALTHY process. And some of them were incredibly short-sighted and violent and self-absorbed. GIGANTIC egos. A terrible war resulted from this self-absorption and their entire civilisation was ECLIPSED and finally destroyed.

      What a sad end to such an interesting species!

      Infighting killed them off ultimately, a bit sad, yes. Don't know of any other species going extinct that particular route. But nothing is ever entirely lost, you know. In the remnants of that destruction, some mutation somewhere LINGERED for thousands and thousands of years, and an entirely new planet – Bluwaters, arose. Look around and see her dressed in her FINERY again, who’s to say she is not more beautiful now than she ever was? And our species has arisen too, hopefully a little more evolved, more aware of the lessons of the past, a little less vain, and less inclined to violence.

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    2. Is this a history lesson or science fiction? Very involved and interesting. You put a lot of work into your story. Good job Nilanjana:-)

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    3. Nilanjana Bose: Brilliant. Sadly true and I hope not prophetic (while fearing it is).

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    4. Thank you, EC! and Granny Annie. :) not very good at genres but probably speculative fic? alt history?

      All the flashes here were a treat to read. Super!

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    5. Brilliant Nila - gosh I loved this ... so true too - very clever ... cheers to all - Hilary

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    6. A vision of the future.....Bluewaters....now that's a name for a planet.

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  19. Such great prompts and interesting takes on them. Always fun. Happy writing everyone.

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  20. Here is mine:
    http://jannghi.blogspot.com/2017/05/words-for-wednesday-week-4.html

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    1. Jamie Ghione: I have been, I have enjoyed, I have applauded.

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    2. Dropped in...enjoyed the story.

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  21. E.C., right now I am still having trouble participating but hope to be cleared up soon. I will volunteer for the Words for September if you would like.

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    1. Granny Annie: Thank you so much. I hope you will be able to join us again soon - and am grateful for your offer to create the prompts.

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  22. Reading these were awesome. I love all the different directions people went with the words. I started thinking, but couldn't connect all the dots- yet. I am off to bed- but maybe I will work out something in my dreams. :)
    ~Jess

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    1. DMS ~Jess: Given the dark directions some of us have gone, I hope you sleep well...

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    1. Margaret-whiteangel: There is isn't there.

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  24. My story is posted. Well half story using the first 6 words. I am inviting others to use the second six words to continue my story if they would like.

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    1. Granny Annie: Oh good. I will be over to applaud in a minute.

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  25. Innocuous... I love that word.

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    1. Blue Grumpster: It is a beauty isn't it? English is such a rich (and complicated and confusing) language.

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  26. gigantic
    healthy
    innocuous
    jaundiced
    kitchen
    linger

    Any questions that were meant to linger after his lengthy exclamation were dispelled. He had been clear and his jaundiced views had made their relationship untenable. Though innocuous at first, she found his opinions hard to put up with now and a gigantic lump formed in her throat as she uttered the words: "I am leaving you". The early evening sun rays streamed through the kitchen window and the innocent look on his face made her hesitate before she repeated the fateful words: "I am leaving you". A tough goodbye would turn out to be the healthy option in the long term, she thought.

    Greetings from London.

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    1. A Cuban in London: This is powerful. And yes, those hard decisions often are the healthiest...

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    2. Bravo to you and to her for making the hard choice.

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  27. Another interesting set of words this week :)

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  28. Here's to hoping you're not telling the future. Though I'm sure I'm not the only one who thought of our new leader in the US while reading your words. :(

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    1. mail4rosey: All of our leaders sing from similar song sheets...

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  29. Well done! Good blog post!
    I'm wishing you happy writing!

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    1. SHON: Thank you. Why don't you join us?

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  30. Happy weekend.
    Have enjoyed the stories:)

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    1. Sandra Cox: And to you. I am very glad you have enjoyed our game.

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  31. Once again I had fun with these words. Thank you.
    https://muttonyearsstyleandi.blogspot.co.uk/2017/05/blush-and-aqua-jumpers-and-skirts.html?m=1

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    1. Anna of Mutton Style and Years: Off to read your take.

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