The Wanton Moppet in a Pom-Pom Hat

Every Christmas, Sister Madly’s mother would spend a week baking up to forty loaves of bread while listening to Lawrence Welk and the Mexicali Brass. Ever since she could remember, Sister Madly and Tallulah would deliver about half of this bounty to neighbors she hardly knew by sight- many of whom lived far beyond the acceptable distance of ‘neighbor’ – while dragging their red wagon through the snow.

But this tradition was not limited to her neighbors.


While no child looks forward to a school day, no morning was as dreaded as the one that came once a year, when her mother handed over a loaf of bread to give to the bus driver. When Sister Madly first heard the term “cruel and unusual punishment,” this scenario is what came to mind.

To this day, Sister Madly cannot tell you why this act of gift-giving was so humiliating; no one made fun her for doing so, the driver was neither mean nor pleasant and face it: those speed bumps weren’t really the lady’s fault. The bread would sit in the middle of the driveway while the siblings squabbled over their predicament, with the underdog of this humiliation being decided when one of them (Tallulah) leapt forward to rescue the loaf from certain destruction by their father’s approaching truck.


However, the argument of who was to give the bread to the bus driver was beans compared to the argument of who would carry the bottle of champagne.

You see, the Darrow’s lived four doors down, one of the few neighbors Sister Madly knew by sight (she use to play in the field- and that weird, pit-like thing- that was behind their house.) Every year the Darrow’s would, in return for the bread, give the girls bottle of champagne.

For Sister Madly, this was much worse than the whole bus driver thing; people might actually think that the champagne belonged to her. They might think that she, a wanton, 5 year-old moppet, had wasted every cent of her allowance on its purchase and there was no way that she could prove otherwise. Her champagne didn’t even come in a paper bag, which is how it was consumed by most good-for-nothings on the streets; no, her bottle had a shiny, red bow tape to it.


Then came the brief but horrifying thought: what if her mother thought that Sister Madly bought the wine for her? Her parents had stopped drinking some years before, and the bar in the basement now held a bizarre assortment of stuffed animals. Should a bottle of wine appear in their midst, it would bring no end of trouble.

These red wagon adventures never went off without a hitch; on the off-chance that any of the neighbor’s were not home at the time of delivery- and there were many such chances- the siblings would be sent out again. And again. And again…

One such delivery spree left them hauling three loaves of bread back to the homestead on the hill, with Sister Madly slotted to re-deliver later that evening. Tallulah got out of it, all because her friend had the audacity to be born on that particular date years before, and wanted to celebrate the fact with a party.

Even back then, Sister Madly had anti-social tendencies; she may have known these 3 remaining neighbors, but that didn’t mean she wanted to go knocking on their doors. Once out of sight of her house, she gave into a tantrum and crawled into the wagon, staring up at the falling snow and the nearby mailbox. It took a few moments for Sister Madly to realize how the mailbox was roughly the same shape as the loaf of bread…

With a newfound enthusiasm, she re-positioned the wagon and, with an impeccable balance not seen since, stood up in the wagon so she could reach the mailbox. As it would turn out, the bread slid easily into the oversized box- and much, much less easily into the other two regular ones, but she did it anyway.

With her mission technically complete, Sister Madly trotted home, confident in the fact that she had rebelled against the unknown universe with little red wagon and a knitted, pompom hat.

pointy tree

5 stupid hours of pointy hell later, Sister Madly’s apartment is
finally festive. She will be calling upon one of you next year to set
up this tree for her. She may even buy you a cider for your trouble.


33 responses

  1. ~meredith

    😀 :D… wicked funny! (i think i’ll laugh all day)


    December 11, 2014 at 7:21 AM

    • Sister Madly

      Quite a compliment- thank you!

      If only we could get away with these same shenanigans as adults… 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      December 11, 2014 at 2:56 PM

      • ~meredith

        We do, I suspect… but children are seldom fooled, so I refrain I daylight hours.

        Liked by 1 person

        January 2, 2015 at 7:04 AM

  2. Relinquished Reversal



    December 11, 2014 at 7:29 AM

    • Sister Madly



      December 11, 2014 at 2:54 PM

  3. Lovely story. I have to say the two headed snowman made me laugh out loud. 🙂


    December 11, 2014 at 7:43 AM

    • Sister Madly

      It made me laugh, too. 😀

      Liked by 1 person

      December 11, 2014 at 2:53 PM

  4. Point of clarification, please: It took SM five hours to do that “tree.” Not that it shouldn’t have, of course. Maybe next year someone could help her?


    December 11, 2014 at 11:42 AM

    • Sister Madly

      I admit that some of that time was spent tracking down all the pieces, but those stupid, pointy, plastic colored things irritated me and put me in a bad mood. Perhaps I’ll just leave the tree up all year. Or throw it out the window come January.


      December 11, 2014 at 3:04 PM

      • If you elect to defenestrate a pointy Christmas tree, use caution. There are liability considerations – particularly if your apartment is on an upper floor! You could work a mischief on some passerby on the street below. It isn’t adequately reported, but pointy tree impalement from above is a growing post-holiday statistic in urban emergency rooms!

        Liked by 1 person

        December 11, 2014 at 3:13 PM

        • Sister Madly

          It’s a ceramic tree, so no one would be impaled so much as, well, killed outright. That would free me from any liable suit, right?

          Liked by 1 person

          December 11, 2014 at 3:25 PM

  5. darkenwulfbytes

    Don’t bring along the Dodo, though…


    December 11, 2014 at 11:58 AM

    • Sister Madly

      Absolutely! I prefer my holidays Dodo free.

      (But I feel that he is never too far away…)


      December 11, 2014 at 3:00 PM

  6. in the spirit of the season I’d be happy kill a tree and stuff it up an angels butt for you.

    Trees are a renewable resource and it is actually good for the economy. Angels, well it’s a little known fact that is where the expression, “They got stick up their butt” came from. Angels can be persnickety and on occasion need reminded of it.

    In return, seeing as how I do have an exceptional grasp of, “The Butterfly Fly Effect” and think it would be well complimented if you taught me about, “The Peanut Butter Fly Effect”.

    No it wouldn’t be an Archangel atop the tree. Those kind of Angels can be real mean, trust me on this!


    December 11, 2014 at 12:29 PM

    • Sister Madly

      This is so NOT the season to cheese off the angels. I need to remain on their good side so when I wander around town at 2:20 AM they are available.

      As for that Peanut Butter thing: if your referring to the sandwich pic of 2 days ago, you must know that NOBODY knows the story behind that one!

      Liked by 1 person

      December 11, 2014 at 3:18 PM

      • I’m allowed and I forget sometimes others aren’t. I’ll have one appointed to you.

        Since Clarence got his wings he’s been impossible so he’s out. Gabriel has that horn and it sounds pretty much like a Banshee since he lost his lip so no. Micheal’s head won’t fit through the hole in his robe since Travolta played him and you don’t want a nekid angel.

        I got it! I’ll get Metatron for you! Who better than the Celestial Scribe to watch over Sister Madly!

        Consider it done and the merriest of Christmases to you Sister Madly!


        December 11, 2014 at 4:31 PM

        • Sister Madly

          My first intro to Metatron was through Terry Prachett’s/Neil Gaiman’s Good Omens. 😀

          But as a Xmas gift, I thank you, as you could have chosen Lucifer who, I hear, was once an angel himself…

          Liked by 1 person

          December 11, 2014 at 5:01 PM

        • You hear correctly. Lucifer was The Bringer of Light. There’s a new Sheriff in town so to spake. Try my, “Vision Quest” remembering the delusion. ;).


          December 11, 2014 at 5:16 PM

        • Sister Madly

          His name means ‘Bringer of Light,’ but wasn’t he also the Angel of Music? (since the invention of Hip Hop, I am inclined to believe it.)

          Liked by 1 person

          December 11, 2014 at 5:24 PM

        • You are also correct about Lucifer, Head of the Music Ministry up in the cloud seats.

          But for me …. Angel Of Music would be, Phantom of The Opera

          Must be something to that Lucifer Music thing cuz one of the times I saw Phantom, Paul Stanley of KISS sung the part of The Phantom” and was surprisingly good!

          This would be Colm Wilkinson singing.

          Liked by 1 person

          December 12, 2014 at 3:58 AM

  7. wull, you know what Sis? sometimes you just amaze me …. ks


    December 11, 2014 at 5:49 PM

    • Sister Madly

      I hope that’s a good thing…

      I was living in West Michigan at the time all this went down, once upon a time. 🙂


      December 11, 2014 at 7:06 PM

      • west fucking michigan … !! oh ..
        sorry …

        wull .. that’s pretty amazing in
        itself …

        who would have
        guessed … ?? not
        i …

        was it
        kazoo or where
        tulips grow … ! once upon a time in the
        west … ummmmm … great name for a movie ….

        you want to know amazing … ok … “the wanton moppet in a pom pom hat” … that’s! amazing … it reminds me of miss piggy dressed up as a cheerleader …. (you have an innate ability to initiate conversation … ) … godda go … g’night … ks


        December 11, 2014 at 8:22 PM

  8. John Thursday

    Good omens. What a great book. And that tree! I just saw 2 exactly like it yesterday at a little breakfast place full of hipsters in plaid and toques. It reminded me of my mother who once had one she painted. Apparently those trees are collectors items now. So said the server at The Yeti.


    December 12, 2014 at 10:10 AM

    • Sister Madly

      The Yeti? Hee Hee… 😀

      This tree use to belong to my grandmother- I got it from her a couple of years ago. But that doesn’t make it any less pointy.


      December 13, 2014 at 12:45 PM

  9. Every mailbox needs bread.


    December 13, 2014 at 4:51 PM

    • Sister Madly

      I agree!

      My mailbox, however, was just holiday-bombed with an electric bill. So NOT festive…


      December 13, 2014 at 5:05 PM

  10. You have outdone yourself. Wickedly good!! Encore!! I laughed well and it drove my headache away for a bit! 😀👏👏


    December 13, 2014 at 6:04 PM

    • Sister Madly

      Aw, thank-you! I miss the childhood days of ‘I-don’t-give-a-hoot-what-my-mother-says-I’m-going-to-do-it-this-way’ because somehow, as kids, we got away with it.

      Here’s hoping that your headache goes away permanently on its own. 😉

      Liked by 1 person

      December 13, 2014 at 6:40 PM

  11. I loved the title and the story! (Especially loved the pics and the two-headed snowman! LOL!) Way to go “wanton moppet in a pom-pom hat” for cheering up my day!


    December 15, 2014 at 11:17 AM

    • Sister Madly

      Thank you!!

      That two-headed snowman opens up a whole new world of possibilities for winter shenanigans, doesn’t it? :c)


      December 15, 2014 at 2:33 PM

  12. annethepoet14

    You are an exceptional writer Sister Madly and am so glad you liked one or two of my poems. Funny and amusing you have such talent. Its a pleasure reading your blog.



    December 15, 2014 at 11:20 PM

    • Sister Madly

      Aw, thank you! That really means a lot to me. 🙂


      December 16, 2014 at 10:22 AM

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