Our Boys and Girls
CANDLES AND CAKES.
Lee and Rosa always celebrated their birth
days together. Lee's came on the seventh of
Angnst and his sister's on the ninth, so every
year they "split the difference," as their
father said, and had a party on the eighth.
Rosa's flowered china tea-set was always nsed
and the table was decorated with wild flowers
gthered by Lee. Then there were gifts around
each plate, and ice cream and candy. But
the best thing about the party was two large
cakes: a jelly cake for Lee, trimmed with red
candles, "to match his hair," Rosa said, and
r. golden sponge cake for Rosa, who had fair
hair and blue eyes. Her cake was covered
with smooth white icing and ornamented with
blue candles. On the inside of each cake a
small gift was to be found ? usually the prize
gift of the collection.
Naturally, the eighth of August was a great
date in the calendar. But this year, alas, when
Lee was to be eight and Rosa six, everything
had seemed to go wrong. First, there were
no small candles to be bought at the village
store, and the city was too far away for or
dering them in time. Then, mother and Aunt
Reba had reluctantly decided that since sugar
was so scarce only one cake should be baked.
"Leave out the candy instead!" the children
But, no, the candy was to be left out any
way. The only question was, what kind of
cake should it be? Aunt Reba generously of
fered to see if she could not think up a cake
that should be part jelly and part sponge,
but this idea did not please.
"It would be like patchwork then," said
Lee tried not to sulk, but his forehead puck
ered. "If we can't have the candles I don't
care anyway," he said. "But what a birth
They stole out into the yard sorrowfully,
leaving Aunt Reba and mother looking very
sad. "Take a little walk down the woods
road," Aunt Reba called. "Maybe you will
have some fun and forget the poor cakes."
So away they went, hand in hand, not no
ticing the wild flowers they had planned to
gather. At a turn in the road they came upon
a small house that they knew quite well. Tt
had been vacant for a long while, but today
the windows were wide, and a little girl stood
behind the sagging gate. She had dark curls
ad a rosy face, and she looked at the chil
ren and smiled.
/""What is your name?" Rosa asked. She
suddenly forgot all about cakes and candles.
"Rosalie," said the strange little girl, still
smiling. "We've just moved here. Come in."1
"We might be in the way," Lee answered.
"You come out and play with us in the
An hour later Aunt Reba looked out and
saw her niece and nephew running up the
walk. She met them at the door. "Good
news!" she called cheerily. "I find that Mr.
Greene is going to town in his car and will
buy the candles. What color shall they be?"
Annt Reba had rather dreaded to put the
question; perhaps neither child would be will
ing to give way to the other. "Red canlTes
or blue?" she asked.
"Pinkl" cried Lee and Rosa together.
"Pink?" Aunt Reba echoed in surprise. ^
"And chocolate for icing," Rosa added, im
By this time they had reached her side. "G
auntie," Lee cried, almost out of breath,
".down the road there's a little girl older than
Rosa who's had a birthday only one year in
Rosa nodded her head hard. "One single
birthday in seven years," she said.
"It is this way," Lee went on. "Her moth
er 'splained it. Rosalie ? that's her name ?
was born on the twenty-ninth of February,
and because of leap years only one February
twenty-ninth has come since then. She had a
birthday when she was four, and that's all."
"And when she was four," Rosa put In,
her eyes large with eagerness, "she didn't
have any cake or candles, or anything. I
asked her why, and she said just because shy
Aunt Reba looked interested and somewhat
sad. "Many little girls have nothing but a
birthday," she said.
"But this one will!" cried Lee. "What do
you think we're going to do? Give her our
eighth of August. Do you know, her age comes
right in between ours ? isn't that queer?"
Aunt Reba smiled. "And isn't it queer,
too," that her name is your two names put
together? Rosalie ? Rosa and Lee.
The children had not thought of that, and
were much pleased. "I knew there was a lit
tle strange girl down the road," Aunt Reba
continued, "but I didn't know things would
turn out as nicely as this. Now call mother,
and we four will make our plans."
They planned so well that on the eighth of
August three beaming children sat down to a
lovely birthday table. Candy was lacking,
and Lee and Rosa did not have as many pres
ents as usual, but somehow they seemed quite
content. Before one place sat a large brown
cake covered thickly with chocolate and blaz
ing with rose-colored candles. "Dark brown
for Rosalie's hair and eyes," the children
laughed, "and pink for her cheeks."
As for the guest of honor, she could hardly
believe her wide eyes. When the cake was
cut there were seven presents for her in its
yellow hart, one for the present birthday and
one for each birthday she had missed ? "for
she missed them all, you know," Rosa had
explained to Aunt Reba, sadly. There was
the slender little silver bracelet that was to
have been Rosa's, and the small pocket mag
nifying glass that was intended for Lee; the
children insisted that these should go into the
cake. Then, Aunt Reba had dressed a wee
china doll in dainty silk, and mother had
found a little blue celluloid thimble to put
in as her share. Father contributed a shining
new silver quarter, and the whole family gave
together a bright scarlet and white button that
made little Rosalie a real member of the Red
Cross, and that pleased her almost more than
When the rake and ice cream had vanished,
and all the gifts had been duly admired, Rosa
lie came up to Aunt Reba and put. out her
hand gravely. "I've heard about birthdays
all my life," she said in her quaint little way,
"but I didn't know they could be like this."
"Neither did we!" cried Lee and Rosa in
joyful duet. "This is the best we ever had."
? Southern Churchman.
THE LOST BALL.
Grandpa and Grandma Barlow had been
away from the farm-house only two hours.
But much can happen in even that length of
.time. When they returned it was to find that
Carl and William had quarreled.
The two little boys were cousins. One lived
in Chicago and the other in Pittsburgh. They
were spending the summer 011 the farm. And
that was the first quarrel.
"It was my ball, my very best one!" Carl
declared. "And William lost it. He said ho
just throwed it against the side of the hou.*?.
And it hain't ? I mean isn't ? there. lie ?
"I didn't steal his old ball!" William shout
ed, his round face very red. "I didn't, grand
pa! I just throwed the ball and ? I ? I can't
"Oh, bother, now!" and grandpa rose.
"Men don't quarrel, not over little things like
that. Of course we shall find the ball."
"And little cousins who love each other like
brothers? I hope my boys are not angry,"
grandma said gently. But they were. They
both trudged off, to help hunt for the ball,
but grandpa noticed that they walked a long
The ball was lost. At the end of a half
hour even grandpa had to admit that.
At first it had looked very easy. William
said he had thrown it against the east side
of the house. There the lawn was smoothly
mowed, and there were no flower-beds or
clumps of shrubbery. The little boy could not
throw with force enough to send the ball far;
it must be at hand.
Grandpa and the boys looked everywhere.
Not antil it seemed as they had inspected
every blade of grass on that side of the house
did grandpa discover that the cellar window
was open a little way.
"Here 'tis. We shall find your ball down in
the cellar, lads."
He led the way in through the house, close
ly followed by both boys. They searched the
cellar, looking in every place where a ball,
coming through the window, could have rolled.
But it was in vain. The ball was not to be
William broke down and cried. He would
go home. He was not a thief. He had lots oT
balls in Pittsburgh, better than any old Chi
And all the time Carl sulked. If WTilliam
had not stolen the ball, where was it?
Not even grandma could dispel the cloud
that had settled over the old farm-house. Both
boys went to bed early, and, although neither
of them would have admitted it, each cried
himself to sleep.
The next morning it wras even worse. An
open and noisy quarrel was only averted by
grandma's firmness. Breakfast over, she sug
gested that Carl go to the mill with grandpa,
while William helped her pick berries.
"No, I do not want you to be together, not
while you feel as you do now," she said.
Just before grandpa was ready to start a
great outcry was heard. It came from the
screened-in back porch. Only grandma knew
that Betty, the hired girl, was preparing to
churn there. The outcry was so loud that
they all ran to the porch. Betty cried:
"The cream is spoiled, Mrs. Barlow! I
brought the can up from the cellar, and when
I poured it in the churn the bottom was all
black and dirty. This was in it," and she
held up the missing ball.
At first the mystery was not cleared, only
changed. But grandpa soon showed the boys
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