For Little Friends

By Carol Bucklew

Sandra and the Robin

From her bedroom window, Sandra spied a robin tugging at a worm. She ran to the kitchen and told her mother, “There’s a robin in the yard, and I’m going to catch it!”

Sandra scurried out the door and bounded toward the robin. The bird flew away. Sandra thought, I didn’t go fast enough. So when the robin landed in the yard again, Sandra raced as fast as her legs would go. But the robin was in the air before Sandra got halfway to it.

Sandra pushed her hands into her pockets. If I could fly, I could catch that robin, she thought.

Seeing it perched in the tree, she called, “Here, birdie. Here, robin.”

But the robin just flew to a higher branch, where Sandra couldn’t see it at all. Sandra was disappointed. She sat under the tree and squeezed her eyes shut and said, “Heavenly Father, please help me. I just want to see the pretty robin up close. I won’t hurt it, I promise.

Opening her eyes again, Sandra thought, Maybe if I had a worm, that robin would come to get it.

Sandra used her sandbox shovel to dig in the dirt near the porch steps. She turned the dirt over, as she’d seen Daddy do, and found a small, wriggly worm. Sandra picked it up and held it in the palm of her hand. Then she went over to the tree and held out her hand and called, “Here’s a worm, robin! Come and get it.”

But the robin didn’t come.

Sandra sat down on the porch step. She tossed the worm to the ground. A tear ran down her cheek.

Just then the robin landed in the yard. Sandra just sat there. She knew that if she moved, it would fly away again.

The robin hopped closer. Sandra held her breath as it hopped very close to her, snatched the worm, and flew away.

Sandra clapped her hands and laughed out loud. Heavenly Father had answered her prayer. She couldn’t catch a bird, but she could watch it up close if she sat very still and was very quiet. She laughed again and went inside to tell her mother.

[illustrations] Illustrated by Julie F. Young

A Ball for the Birds

To make a colorful ball of materials that birds can use in their nests, you will need: piece of cord; short scraps of yarn, string, or thread; and plastic netting, such as an onion or potato sack.

  1. 1.

    Cut circle from netting about dinner-plate size.

  2. 2.

    Place scraps in center of netting, loosely gather sides up over scraps, then tie with one end of cord.

  3. 3.

    Pull a few scrap ends through holes in netting.

  4. 4.

    Tie other end of cord to tree branch.

Sailboat Sandwiches

3 slices bread

2 fillings: peanut butter and jelly, or tuna salad and egg salad, or ham and cheese, or whatever two fillings that you like together

2 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and halved lengthwise (the “boats”)

4 lettuce leaves (the “sea”)

  1. 1.

    Make club sandwich, and cut diagonally into four “sails” (see illustration).

  2. 2.

    Place upended sails onto boats, then “float” each boat on lettuce sea.

Barnaby Botts

Barnaby Botts
Ran off to sea
When he was only
Half past three.
He nevermore
Set foot on shore,
Till he was nearly
Half past four.
Then all he could say
Was “Ahoy!” and “Avast!”
And “Shiver me tops’l
And mizzenmast!”
And “Belay below—
It’s agoin’ to blow!”
And “Batten the hatches—
He said we all
Talked Greek on shore.
So when Barnaby Botts
Was half past four,
He went to sea
And said that we
Would never again
See Barnaby.

[illustrations] Illustrated by Julie F. Young