sandy's snoring sleeping bag!
By Kathy Warnes
"Wake up, Sandy! We'll be late for school."
"School! School’s closed today because of the snow! Why do I have to wake up already?"
From her hiding place, Sandy saw two feet in red rubber boots race across the wood floor. The red rubber boots were laced up with red, white, and blue laces. Sandy grabbed one of the red, white, and blue laces and her sister Josie came to a screeching stop on her tiptoes.
"Come out and see my new boots," Josie coaxed Sandy. Mama says that they will keep my feet warm and dry when we play outside in the snow. And it’s snowing and snowing, Sandy. Aren’t you coming outside to play in the snow with me?”
"I’m hibernating, “Sandy told Josie. I 'm sleepy and it's dark and quiet here under the bed," Sandy said. "It's like grandma’s bedroom."
"You promised you’d come out and play in the snow with me, Sandy" Josie said.
"Sweet dreams are waiting for me to close my eyes, and my sleeping bag is snug and warm," Sandy protested.
"There's some honey in the refrigerator, Sandy. I'll take it out and warm it in the microwave so you can have on your toast for breakfast.” Josie pulled up the corner of the blanket. "Come on, Sandy. Let’s have breakfast and go out and play in the snow. Snow’s no fun without you
“I can't, Josie! I'm not finished hibernating!"
“What’s hibernating?” Josie asked her big sister
“Come down here and you’ll find out Sandy said.
Josie stretched out flat on the floor so that she and Sandy could touch noses.
“Sandy, I don’t see anyone in your sleeping bag with you.”
“You mean you don’t hear Wally snoring?”
“Wally’s a woodchuck. Miss Cranston my teacher says woodchuck’s are true hibernators. So are bats and ground squirrels and chipmunks. That means they sleep all winter, Josie.” Sandy told her sister.
“Shh! We’re talking too loud. We might wake him up.”
“I don’t think we will,” Sandy said. “He’s snoring so loud that he won’t hear us and he won’t wake up until spring.”
“Do you have anybody else in your sleeping bag besides Wally?”
“Betsy the Bat was here, but I carried her out to the barn because I didn’t want to upset Mom. You know how she feels about bats.”
“Ewww!” Josie shuddered. “I don’t like bats either. I don’t’ want to meet Betsy.”
“You don’t have to meet Betsy. She’s hibernating out in the barn and she’ll fly away when she wakes up in the spring.”
“Achoo!” Josie sneezed when a bit of dust from under the bed blew up her nose. “Are you coming out from your sleeping bag, Sandy? You can’t sleep all winter. We have to go out and play in the snow.”
“I’m still hibernating. I take long naps, especially when it’s snowing. I’m one of what Miss Crnaston calls the light sleeper hibernators. We take long naps, but we wake up easily. Animals like skunks, raccoons, opossums and bears don’t sleep through the entire winter. They wake up between long naps.”
“Do they go to school in between naps like you do?” Josie asked.
“No, they usually go looking for food,” Sandy said. “The refrigerator’s pretty full at our house so I don’t have to look very far for food. Sometimes raccoons have to travel a long way between naps to find something to eat in the winter time.”
“Is there a raccoon in your sleeping bag, too?” Josie asked Sandy.
“No, Rocky Raccoon lives with Miss Cranston, my teacher, so he’s sleeping over at her house. But Brandon the Bear is here. He’s curled up in the corner of my sleeping bag and he snores almost as loud as Wally the Woodchuck. Can’t you hear him?”
Josie lay perfectly still listening. She heard the shower dripping in the bathroom. She heard Sandy breathing. She heard herself breathing. “No, I don’t hear a bear,” she said
“Listen real hard,” Sandy said.Josie listened real hard and she stared at Sandy’s sleeping bag. Then she saw it and she heard it. The corner of the sleeping bag moved up and down with the force of someone snoring and she heard faint ZZZZZZZ’s coming from the sleeping bag.
“I hear it!” Josie shouted. “I hear your sleeping bag snoring, Sandy! Is it Brandon the Bear?”
“That’s Brandon the Bear,” Sandy said. “Shhh! You might wake him up. He’s a light sleeper.”
Josie carefully edged away from Sandy’s bed. She crawled over to the doorway and stood up. She tiptoed down the hallway to the kitchen. She burst through the kitchen doorway.
“Mom, Sandy has a bear in her sleeping bag!” she shouted.
Mom jumped and sloshed some of her coffee onto the kitchen table. “I can hear you, Josie, you don’t need to shout, especially if there is a bear in Sandy’s sleeping bag.”
“Mom, Brandon the Bear is sleeping in Josie’s sleeping bag.”
“What do you want me to do about it Josie? Ask Sandy what she wants to do with him”
Josie ran back down the hallway to Sandy’s room. She stretched out flat on the floor so that she and Sandy touched noses again.”I didn’t wake Brandon up, did I?” she whispered.
Sandy smiled and then she yawned and stretched. “No, he’s still sleeping. He likes to sleep when it’s snowing, and he only snores when he’s sound asleep. Maybe I can go out and make a snowman with you, Josie.”
“Let’s go outside, Sandy. I already have my boots on. Let’s go have some toast and oatmeal and go outside and make a snowman.”
"I am not-- Before Sandra could finish her sentence, the dust motes danced under her nose.”ACHOOOOOO!" Sandy sneezed..
"Listen to you sneezing,” a brisk voice said. “You sound like you’re catching cold.”
A new pair of feet stood beside Josie's red boots with red, white, and blue laces. These feet wore large, dirty white sneakers with a hole in each toe. These feet stood beside a Delco Deluxe Vacuum Cleaner. "It's time to vacuum your room, and that includes under the bed."
“That’s not Sandy sneezing, that’s Brandon the Bear snoring,” Josie told her mother.
“I didn’t hear any snoring, I just heard sneezing,” her mother said. “You need to vacuum the dust out from under your bed.”
“Mom, I heard Brandon the Bear snoring in Sandy’s sleeping bag,” Josie said.
“I don’t care who is sneezing and who is snoring,” Mom said. “It’s time for you girls to eat your breakfast and help me clean your room before you go outside to play.”
“Shhh! Mom, you’ll wake up Brandon the Bear,” Josie warned.
Mom turned on the vacuum cleaner and vacuumed under Sandy’s bed. While Mom was bent over Sandy’s bed, Josie grabbed the corner of Sandy’s sleeping bag and pulled it out from under Sandy’s bed. She dragged the sleeping bag across the bedroom floor and shoved it under her own bed.
Josie carefully spread out the sleeping bag and patted the corner where she had seen Brandon the Bear snoring. Mom was still vacuuming. “I hope we didn’t wake him up, “Josie yelled to Sandy “Don’t’ worry about him. Let’s hurry and eat and get our work done so we can go outside and make a snowman,” Sandy said.
Josie and Sandy finished cleaning their room and they hurried into the kitchen to eat their breakfast. Josie looked out the kitchen window while Mom and Sandy made toast and oatmeal for breakfast. Josie ate two pieces of toast with honey. All during breakfast Josie listened for Brandon’s snoring. She didn’t hear any snoring.
“We might have waked Brandon up,” Josie said. “I don’t hear any snoring at all.”
“I’ll go check my sleeping bag,” Sandy said. “Maybe he wants to come out and make a snowman with us.”
Josie cleared the table and dried the breakfast dishes for Mom. She listened for snores from the bedroom, but she didn’t hear Brandon snoring.
While she put on her coat and hat and laced her red, white, and blue boot laces Josie listened for Brandon’s snoring. She didn’t hear any snoring.
Finally, Josie finished drying the breakfast dishes and went to their bedroom. Sandy lay stretched out flat on the floor singing to her sleeping bag under Josie’s bed.
“Sleep little Brandon bear,
Let your snores fill the air,
I’ll give you a goodnight hug,
Sleep as snug as a bear in a rug!”
Josie sang along with Sandy and after what seemed like ten years to Josie, she heard some faint zzz’s coming from Sandy’s sleeping bag.
“Let’s tiptoe out while he’s still sleeping,” Sandy said.
They got as far as the hallway when the snoring stopped. Sandy went back into their room and Josie heard her moving something around. Then Sandy started singing the Bear Lullaby again. “Sing Josie,” she yelled from the bedroom.
Josie sang along with Sandy and after another long time she finally heard snoring coming from the bedroom. Sandy and Josie tiptoed back to the kitchen. “What were you moving?” Josie asked her as they hurried out the back door.
Brandon said he wanted to sleep in your sleeping bag too, so I spread both sleeping bags out in the middle of the floor. Then we sang him to sleep.”
Josie knew that Sandy wasn’t telling her something. While they were rolling the snowballs for their snowman, she said, “What else did you do, Sandy?”
“I gave him a bear hug.”
“A long enough bear hug to last his whole nap?” Josie asked.
“I think so, but it’s your turn next if he wakes up.”
Josie glanced at the kitchen window out of the corner of her eye. She saw a brown, furry face peeking out at them. She threw a snowball at the window, and then started back toward the house.
“Now it’s my turn to hibernate," Josie said.