The INDEX for our Archived 'Write To A Picture' pages is HERE.

Open for Business

By Marilyn (

I call this challenge, "Open for Business," and it's up to you to tell us what sort of business it is. Tell us about the people or the person who runs the business. A male or a female of what age? Is it a year-round business? A real estate office? The business of a hobbist? An art gallery? I know what the business is, of course, but don't let my wanderings fool you. I may or may not have gone inside.

I hope my questions have given you some writing ideas. Have fun with it. A poem, a story, or some musings would be great. We look forward to your entry.

LaraOct7. (

Doing the Math, Donna's Alterations

By Phyllis Ann (

Donna needed some extra cash flow. She wasn't sure what she could do to bring in that extra money. Her husband, Don, and their three children were in need of some medical check ups, and school was about to start. That was always added expense. Donna was a good seamstress and had always made all her own clothes. She also had made the children some clothes when they were small, but now they wanted clothes from the department stores. She began to think about alterations and how people in her town could use someone who would alter garments at a reasonable price. They had a spare room off the dining room, and she thought that would be a good place to set up her little alteration business. The dry cleaners down the street charged $10.00 just to hem a pair of blue jeans. She thought she could do it for $5.00 because she wouldn't have any overhead. So she put out some flyers and put a flag out front that said "OPEN". She also ran an add in the newspaper with her telephone number.

Soon, she began to receive calls. One lady needed to have her name embroidered on her uniform shirts, and Donna had an attachment for that. Another lady wanted all her slacks cut off an inch and hemmed. She even had a lady ask if she could make her a dress for her daughter's wedding. Donna was up to all those jobs and more. The business just came pouring in. Don was really surprised at how much business she was generating, and then came an unexpected call. It was from the "powers that be" wanting to know if she had a business license and if her home was in a business zone.

Donna was scared that she wouldn't be able to make any more extra money for her household. Now they were saying that she needed to charge sales tax, and was she doing that. Donna was so depressed that she sat down and cried for about a half an hour, and then she blew her nose, wiped her eyes and contacted her bank about how to run a small business. She found out what she needed to do to keep doing her sewing from her home.

Donna is now a minority, small business owner, and she is using her talent for the good of her family. It is the American way. After all, her Grandma did sewing for the local dry cleaner at home for over twenty years. She knew it would be alright for her too. She just needed to "do the Math".

Open for Business

By Doris (

Jean's Antique Shoppe has been part of the St. James town for as long as anyone can remember. She keeps the place very clean and organized - not like some of the fly-by-night antique shoppes in the surrounding towns. It's a busy little town so her granddaughter comes in on spring and summer weekends to help out in the store, or to run errands and pick up and deliver. It's a family operation and does very well.

The jewelry section is to the right as you walk in the front door. The glass cases are always spotlessly clean as is the jewelry, some of it going as far back as the 1920's. Jean insists on presenting all the merchandise as good as new, and her granddaughter works right along side her.

In the middle of the store there's a section with china, crystal and glassware. She changes the colorful sets according to the seasons. Right now it's green, blue and yellow for the summer, and the soft lighting enhances the items beautifully. There are also scarves and floral arrangements, in a variety of complimentary colors, to accent the merchandise. I am always drawn to that area.

Towards the back of the store are the REAL antiques. Mostly furniture and metalware from times gone by. Amusing signs and hand crocheted and knitted afghans and table scarves are neatly folded and displayed across the antique furniture. I've made some purchases there over the years and have always been happy with them.

Jean says she'll never give up the store and has left it to her granddaughter in her will. It's nice to know that the store will be there for a long time to come. I've shopped there for 40 yrs. it would be nice to have MY grandchildren shop there, too. :)


By Joy (

The moment you open the door you smell
The odors of long ago
Sugars and spices and everything nice
Neatly tied up with a bow

The wreaths are hung lovingly on the wall
Made of dried sweet lavender and lace
Bags of exotic seeds to sell
Each candle ensconced neatly in place

There are candles made by loving hands
Flickering in all sorts of places
Wafting the smells of cinnamon out
Into all the crowded spaces

The mystery of all the aromas
In colorful wax candles and tins
Calming French lavender and subtle sweet pea
Are labeled and put into bins

Birthday candles for grandchildren
With a smell of a clean bathed child
Faint odors of soothing talcum
For them just something quite mild

Suddenly the scene is a bit overloading
With the smells and all the array
I purchase a red eucalyptus candle
And go merrily on my way

Open for Business

By Amy (

dorothy is opening a soda shoppe
she is using her home for the shoppe since the economy is so bad.
she has her flag as advertisement and it is a big one.
people will walk by see that flag and want to know what is going on inside the shoppe.
it is a female because of the flowers and plants and things and the window dressing.
i wish her much success.

Open for Business

By Sharon (

Little Marilyn was angry. She was being babysat by her loving grandparents. But they had a store to run. The circus was in town for one day and they refused to close the shop to take her to it. They felt she was safe in the apartment above the store. After all, she would have to come down the stairs and past the sales desk to get outside. But they failed to take into account her ability to find other ways to do things.

Marilyn waited until they were fully busy with customers. Then she opened a window and climbed down the bushes that grew up the side of the wall. She had no money with her, so when she got to the circus, she found a large family entering with already bought tickets, and got inside without the ticket taker noticing there was one extra child. When she got hungry, she grabbed whatever snack someone had sat down on the bleacher seat and wasn't watching carefully.

She had a wonderful time at the circus. Afterwards, she snuck on back to her grandparents store, hoping they hadn't noticed she was gone. She was out of luck. Her Grandfather had realized what had happened and cut down the shrubs outside the window. She couldn't climb back up. So she had to come in through the front door of the store. She knew she was in for a scolding.


By Mary Carter Mizrany (

"What's all that racket out there, Jess?"

"Ole maam", that only those dad~blamed
cats n dogs afightin' agin"! "Got inta tha
gaabage cain, but I shooed 'em away right fast like."

"Well, you know I just cannot abide those
noisy critters" . . . ya know how frazzled my
nerves has been trying ta get this new
business agoin'."

"Yea, Maam . . . it been like a three~ring
circus round here since you came on tha
idee a openin' this here meetin' hall in yore house!"
You been busy as a one~armed cranberry
picker in tha rainy season, round here!"

Jess had been Miz Langley' helper for
years now, as she recalled. Let's see,
that must be bout 25 years now, she
recollected. He'd been a life~saver since
World War II started.

Service men and women seemed to enjoy
meetin' time at Miz Langley's. The town had
that air force base on the outskirts.
Jess thought it a purty brilliant idee of
Miz Langley to open this service club
where she and the volunteers could ply
their wares to hungry and thirsty military.

"ALMOST HEAVEN" brought 'em in by
the droves to play games, eat
that lip~smackin' fried chicken n other goodies
and drink that sparklin'
pink lemonade Miz Langley be well known fur.

Tha business was boomin' . . .
Miz Langley runnin' herself ragged tryin'
ta keep up with it.

Well, when he came ta thinka it all,
those extra dollars went fur ta pay tha
bills Ole Maam been strapped with fur so long.

Seemed to Jess like Ole Maam was killin'
two birds with one stone openin' this here
club what she called business; yet, bringing
some much needed R n R fur those so fur away
from home.

She watched over those fly~boys like theyuz
her very own. An ~ sure nuff no 'hanky~panky"
gonna get by Miz "proper" Langley's eyes:-)

"Look here, Jess, stop your day~dreamin'
an cut me some of those lilacs and lilies so's
I can make a pretty bouquet for the middle of
this table." "You know it's about time for
tha party I'm athrowin' for my guys n gals
this evenin'." "Mayswell cut somma that
greenery, too, while your at it."

Sounds of boogey~woogey could be
heard comin' outta every window at ALMOST HEAVEN
and Jess was amazed at tha way those kids
could dance. Ole Maam had a surprise for
the best couple in the dance off tonight.
"Why, she ALWAYS comin' up with sommin'
special for her "children" . . . she was a perfect
momma," thought Jess.

Ole Maam brought out a purty, shiny
trophy and curls of laughter could be heard
throughout ALMOST HEAVEN.

The volunteers cheered the winners
and patted the backs of the would~be winners,
as Miz Langley smiled.
"Bout time ta be closin' for tonight, younguns," . . .
don't be worryin' none though . . .
ALMOST HEAVEN be open round sundown
tomorrow." I'm thinkin' up a thriller
for youins and Miz Langley wants ta thank
ya from my heart for makin' my new business
a GREAT success!"

Jess and a couple other volunteers helped
get all the lights turned out while sayin their

Kneeling by her bedside that night,
Miz Langley thank the good Lord for keeping
her spirits up and giving her the strength to
accomplish ALMOST HEAVEN'S duties.
She remembered to pray for all her fly~boys
and the young ladies she'd come to love, as well.
Miz Langley kissed the picture on the bedside
table, as she did each night before retiring.
The love of her life, who'd fought the good fight
at the battle of Guadalcanal and made heaven
his home now. God rest his soul.
"I'll Be Seeing You", my darlin'.


By Connie (

What kind of business is it? It's a business of one who writes for a living. He's a very gifted and brilliant poet/writer sitting behind a desk in this nondescript little house pecking away at a keyboard writing another poem which flew into his mind or another book he wants to publish or writing for the daily newspaper. He doesn't have a constant flow of customers, but from time to time, people come in to buy a poem to give a loved one or someone wanting him to write an article for a magazine. He's traveled all over the world and has vast knowledge of places.

As you know, writers do not need a fancy office to work in. They can write any where - even on a napkin in a restaurant, on a bus, or sitting in a park. Their mind is always clicking as to the desires that govern their heart. His secretary only works part time so he has to answer a lot of the calls himself. Sometimes people often drop by to ask something about computers, which he has vast knowledge, although he does not work on them, but tells them how to fix it. He's very generous with his knowledge.

He works very hard to get his daily newspaper writings out, which makes those unaware of what he actually does. Who would ever guess by looking at the appearance of this house, such a person doth work and live, much less what he is capable of doing. His sign on the front door only says --- Welcome - Do Come In!

Little White House

By Tom (

Little white house, setting there,
sort of old, somewhat rundown.
Poppa built it after the war,
when Momma was his blushing bride.

Seven kids born and raise in the little white house,
there on a corner one acre lot.
When we grew up and went out on our own,
Momma and Poppa were left there alone.

Just two tired old folks, getting close to retirement,
Poppa got sick, Mary Ellen moved back,
nursed them both for a lot of years,
until they both passed on.

Mary Ellen’s children grew and went,
soon she was white-headed and so tired.
But she was not that worn out,
decided to open her own shop.

So the little worn-out woman in a worn-out house,
opened a sewing and knick-knack shop.
She made art type stuff from what she found on her walks,
my oh my, people began to talk.

Soon she had a busy tourist shop,
people paid a whole lot of money
for her hand-made knick-knacks,
soon she was rolling in the dough.

Then one day Mary Ellen was approached
by a rich lady from up in Maine.
With a smile she sold out.
Now it is known as “Marilyn of Maine’s Exquisite Gift Shoppe.”

So the little white house on the corner,
had a lot of happy evenings,
but now we all smile.
Heck we are all retired.

Love of the Old Sod

By Norma (

Mr. and Mrs. McTyver were first generation Scottish immigrants. Even so, they had shared their little home for 45 years before Mr. McTyver, who was mowing their acre of ground with an old-time push mower, keeled over with a heart attack and died. Old Mr. McTyver was typically tight as Scotsmen are said to be. But he was generous to a fault to each of his five boys. Trouble was Mr. McTyver taught his boys to be tight, too, left very little to Mrs. McTyver except their home and its sparse furnishings. In the old country way, Mrs. McTyver didn’t consider working in the world, but she had a passion for history and stories about her old sod. She had never stopped being homesick for its heather, its cliffs and lochs. How would she manage? She, too, was frugal and had spent the bit of money they had frugally. Her sons, it seems, were frugal, too.

An old Scotch clan flag - a bit ragged - hung in the corner of their little parlor. One day Mrs. Mac, as she was affectionately called, had tea with her neighbor, Jenny Stewart, and asked her if she happened to have any Scotch ancestry. The neighbor said she thought she did, and together, they looked up her clan plaid in some old history books treasured by our sweet Mrs. Mac. So pleased was her neighbor she asked Mrs. Mac if she could teach her to sew her plaid. Mrs. Mac was gleeful! She wanted to be helpful to this sweet young lady, and carefully ordered the materials they would need. The young lady was giddy beside herself! “Something especially mine!” she exclaimed. Then the young neighbor hatched an idea! Mrs. McTyver could search the plaids for custom orders and she would sew them, also in custom size and embellishments.

Jenny made some flyers for Mrs. Mac on her computer. Mrs. Mac rearranged her little house for one room for sewing and filling custom orders. When she received her first “commission,” Mrs. Mac proudly planted the Scottish clan flag from her living room at the corner of her cottage. These two oddly matched friends complimented each other’s skills. Mrs. Mac found her frugal ideas fit the business of a budding cottage industry, and Jenny found an outlet for her latent artistic talents.

They talked happily together - each satisfied with the other one’s company for several years. Filling orders, buzzing sewing machines, stocking fabrics in neat folded rows, and even entertaining customers in person who were curious about their roots. Always a cup of tea and Scottish shortbread. They also must be patient with Mrs. Mac’s memories and descriptions of her old land - embellished a bit, perhaps - but delightful nonetheless.

Mrs. Mac left her little house to Jenny when she went to her heavenly homeland. Jenny has put her own needles down, but did I tell you that she had two daughters along the way who are running the little business from the same little house surrounded by heather and lavender.

Today There is Rain

Monday Morning Walk


Haiku: Snowies (several authors)

Soft White Puff Clouds (several authors)


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