I saw, National Tell A Fairy Tale Day and thought why not. I mean, my writing challenges are fiction and could easily be fairy tale-ish, right? Sure.
So here is my Fairy Tale.
Once upon a time in a far away land...no no no. STOP the train. That has been done sooo many times. Let's try something different. Ready? Yeah, me too.
Sally rubbed her eyes and stretched. Oh wow what a wonderful nights sleep. She stood and fluffed her leaf and laid it back into place. She looked around, it seemed the forest was already alive this morning. Everyone was buzzing about and getting ready to receive the Snow Queen. Oh my...her arrival was unexpected but so exciting to think about.
Sally walked to the edge of the flower and took off, as she buzzed through the air she looked below. There was Ms. Centipede trying to wrangle her three little ones, each going in a different direction. There was Mr. Squirrel scurrying about gathering nuts like a mad hatter. Oh yes, and Mrs. Cottontail with her brood of bunnies all hopping along and chattering, who knew bunnies talked so much, kinda like magpies.
As she hurried along she could see the colony before she approached it, oh man, it looked like she was late, what???
Nearing she heard someone shout "She's here, Sally's here!". Why the big to do? She was always here, it was part of her job to be here. She was probably in trouble for being out all night and breaking the rules yet again.
Landing and walking along here came Sue Bee rushing toward her, she stopped short and bowed. "My Queen." What the what? Sally shook her head. "Have you lost your mind Sue Bee, what are you talking about?"
Landing in front of her and quickly taking a bow was Rush. He was the Queen's right wing man. He looked at her and said "Forgive me, my Queen, but please hurry" and he took off. She jumped into flight behind him and soon they came to the Queen's chamber.
There she was, but wait, what was wrong?!
Dr Buzz came over and said "Sally, you will be Queen from this moment on until your end arrives. Our Queen Mother has passed, just moments ago, and you are next in line according to what is written."
Wait, I'm what?! Sally shook her head. "Next in line? How can that be?"
"Yes, next in line, for you see, the humans came through very early this morning and sent some strong vapors through the colony, before we had chance to warn anyone and well, it took the Queen mother, her daughters and their daughters, according to our lineage, you are next in line."
Oh wow, she wasn't prepared for this. No one every expected that she'd live long enough to be Queen past all the others in line. She took a deep breath and said "Long live our Queen Mother." Then she paused and said "now we MUST get ready for the Snow Queen. Her arrival is sooner than we thought, the forest is alive with activity. MAN the battle stations, protect the hive, gather the workers and let's prepare!"
A loud cheer went up outside, yes, Sally would make a fine Queen even if she wasn't ready.
The hours progressed and the hive was looking in tip top shape, the combs were filled, the workers were exhausted and the new Queen, well Sally was satisfied with how things were going but she needed to go for a quick flight.
She walked to the door of her chamber but there stood several guards. huh? Oh yeah, she was Queen now. She couldn't just take flight. She sighed. Whoever said it's good to be Queen had never been a queen.
Later that day as dusk began to descend on the forest, the animals all went into their homes and shut the doors tight. The darkness fell, the wind began to howl and the temperatures began to drop. Small delicate flakes began to fall, yes, the Snow Queen was on her way.
By morning the forest floor was covered in a blanket of white and there in all her glory stood the Snow Queen. Regal, tall and mighty yet soft and warm. She waved her hand and tiny flakes fell again. A blue jay sitting on a limb over head squawked out the morning call. One by one the animals came out of their homes, dens, nest and hiding. Each one gathering and bowing before the Snow Queen. She smiled and looked around. She loved each of these creatures and hoped they were all prepared.
In a voice like wind she whispered, "Good morning all and I hope you have taken the warning of my arrival serious, I will be with you for the next six weeks. The sun will shine but the wind will howl. The nights will be harsh but the days will shine like diamonds. The humans near by will be hunting some of you, so do take caution. There is a new friend down the trail. A human who loves us and she will be leaving out food each day. Don't be greedy. Leave some for your neighbors but do take enough for your family each day. This is a blessing from Mother Nature herself. So remember to be thankful. I would also like to address a new Queen in our midst. Sally is the new Bee Queen as of three moons ago." Sally flew in front and everyone bowed. It was quiet humbling but she held her position and then flew to land on the shoulder of the Snow Queen to take her place in the Royal Forest Advocacy Defense Line. What a moment if only her mother were alive to see this!
The Grand Buck came up front and bowed before the RFADL and gave a snort, "I smell the human hunters, they are near my Queen, we must allow the little ones to take cover."
"YES! Everyone, take cover but do not be afraid. This year I have heard from Mother Nature herself, that if we follow her instructions, we will all be here come spring time." In a whisper her voice traveled through the forest and across the glenn to each ear listening. Yes, they would all take heed and follow instruction.
And just like the wind, the Snow Queen was gone. Everyone disbursed to their homes and no one hunter fired a single shot that day or that season.
It was a harsh winter and some of the animals didn't fair as well as others but no one perished.
Spring time was a time of renewal, of life and well, a lot more bunnies!
Queen Bee Sally was out enjoying the warm air, yes, she had a cluster of guards with her but she didn't care. She was enjoying the sun and visiting all the flowers the new human had planted. What a lovely garden full of all sorts of flowers and plants. It looked as if she had planted them next to the forest edge, maybe on purpose? Just for her forest friends? Yes this was truly a lovely time to be Queen.
Thank you Forsyth Family Magazine for the photo
Now this cake is no fairy tale and as I did my best to reduce the sugar and fat it is still delicious and perfect for Spring or anytime you want it to feel like spring has arrived.
Following the cake mix instructions in amounts but substituting applesauce for oil.
Mix well and pour into a greased 13x9 baking dish. Bake at the temp and time for your oven and altitude. I learned many years ago that all ovens are different and depending on your climate, it can affect the turn out of baked goods.
box of raspberry jello
1 cup boiling water
1/2 cup cold water
Dissolve the jello in hot water, once it is dissolved, add the cold water. IF you do not do this, it will be grainy.
Cool the cake slightly, wait about 15-20 minutes, then poke holes in the top with the end of a wooden spoon. Pour the jello over the cake. Don't worry, I thought oh no I've made a mistake this will cause the cake to be mush and gross. It didn't.
Place it in the fridge to cool off. No lie y'all, it was FREEZING the day I made this cake and my fridge was full...so I covered the cake and sat it in our screened in porch for a couple of hours. It almost froze!
Using the following:
1/2 container of 8 oz light or sugar free whipped topping
1/4-1/2 of shredded coconut
Spread the whipped topping over the cake and sprinkle with coconut, you could leave this off if you're not a fan, but it really adds that certain something, ya know?