Getting the job done!

While the Friar was writing his sermon, Liam was getting to work. It was very time consuming and getting all the pieces in the right places proved a little difficult at first! But Liam persevered and read all the instructions carefully and soon, he was getting the hang of it! Before long, the sink was together and had doors on the front! It was very satisfying work, to be sure!

Liam was just about done with the sink when he took his first break. He was feeling a little tired when he spied the coffee his Person had left on the table.

“I don’t think she’ll mind too much,” he said, drinking the coffee down. He felt a little perky and set back to his task!

Friar Ben was wondering how Liam was doing with his chores. When he got back to the table to see how everything was going, Liam had completed the icebox and was installing the pump on the sink!

“My goodness, boy, you sure work fast!” Friar Ben chuckled as he walked up. Leia wagged her tail.

Friar Ben looked all around. There was something missing! The Friar got very worried, all of a sudden! He had been so looking forward to hearing that pump organ playing at the church! Perhaps Liam hadn’t been able to do that one on his own. He should have come sooner and offered a hand! “Are you looking for the organ, Friar?” Liam asked. “Follow me!”

Liam brought Friar Ben into the farmhouse where Colleen lived with Penny. Colleen was dusting the living room.

“We had plenty of room in here since we don’t have any living room furniture yet,” Liam explained. So Colleen and I moved the organ in here for safe-keeping until the church was built!”

“Isn’t it beautiful?” Colleen asked.

“Yes, it is really lovely!” the Friar answered. “Does anyone play?”

“Carmen plays!” Colleen said. “Let me call to her! Maybe she’ll come over and play us a tune!”

A few moments later, Hitty Carmen came over and played “Amazing Grace” on the pump organ. They all sang with gusto! Friar Ben was thrilled! All the Hittys could sing the hymns every Sunday at church!

“Carmen, I do hope you will bless us with your playing once the church is up!” the Friar asked.

“I would be very happy to!” Hitty Carmen answered.

After Hitty Carmen’s little impromptu concert, Friar Ben and Liam took the sink and the icebox back to the rectory and set them up in the kitchen.

“This is really wonderful, Liam! I really appreciate all the hard work you did today!” the Friar said. Liam shrugged.

“It was nothing, Friar! I was happy to do it!”

“After we get a stove, I’ll be happy to do the cooking too, ” Liam said.

“And I will be happy to eat your cooking! So much so, I’ll even do the dishes!” the Friar laughed.

“It’s a deal!” Liam laughed too.

“Well, you’ve had a very busy day, my boy,” Friar Ben said, as he settled himself into his comfy chair. “How about I beat you at a game of checkers before we turn in?”

“We’ll just have to see about that!” Liam sat down in his chair and realized just how tired he was when he tried to focus on the checkerboard! But he also felt very happy and content that he had gotten the job done!

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Liam is more helpful than he knows!

The Hittys knew that sound! If their person was that excited it meant new furniture and/or accessories for them!!! Liam and the Friar needed a new kitchen so they decided to take a walk and see what all the noise was all about!

“Wow! Now I understand!” Liam exclaimed, looking at the boxes with the sink and the icebox. He was looking forward getting a working kitchen going at the rectory so he could cook for himself and the Friar.

“This is for the church!” Friar Ben said excitedly and pointed to the box with the pump organ. “How thrilling it will be to have everyone singing with music to accompany the voices!”

“Well, let’s get this show on the road!” Liam said. He had a full set of tools! His carve dad was very good at this sort of thing and Liam had tried to pay attention so he could help out once he got here! Baking wasn’t his only talent!

“I don’t think I’ll be very much help to you, son,” Friar Ben said solemnly. He was a much better gardener! “Give me a spade any day but screwdrivers just confuse me!”

“Confuse you? Really?” Liam shook his head.

“Well, I forget the difference between a flat head and a Phillip’s head screwdriver. And what are you doing with Phillip’s screwdriver anyway? ‘Thou shalt not steal’, after all!” Friar Ben was very serious.

Liam just laughed! “Why don’t you go back to the rectory, Friar! You have plenty to do in the garden! I can handle this!”

So, Friar Ben went back to the rectory. He felt badly that he left all that work for Liam. But he also knew he would have hindered Liam more than he helped him so Friar Ben was very happy to check on his roses and do a little weeding around the trellis.

Friar Ben looked after his potted plant and made a few decisions about what he wanted the Mary garden to look like and what plants he wanted to plant there. He thought also about how glad he was that Liam would be bunking with him for the next few months!

“That boy has a good head on his shoulders!” he thought and he smiled.

Then Friar Ben fed the birds that lived happily in his garden. He said a few prayers at Mary’s feet before going downstairs. He asked the Blessed Mother to help Liam with his task. He thanked God for sending Liam to live with him and all the Hittys. Friar Ben felt very blessed that evening!

Friar Ben also felt very inspired by his young house-mate! Even though the church wasn’t built yet, he didn’t see any reason he couldn’t start writing sermons! So, for the first time since he moved in, Friar Ben settled himself at his desk and started to write his sermon for when the church was finished. He chose being a helpful neighbor as his subject! It seemed fitting!

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A day at the beach!

The children of the house were all excited! They were going to the beach! Hitty Colleen and Liam were thrilled also! They were tagging along! Hitty Pomma said she would take good care of Penny while they had a day to themselves.  “Liam can’t wear his baker’s outfit, it’s too hot for that,” the boy child said. So Liam was changed to his shorts. It was a lovely, sunny day and they spread out their blanket and shared some food.

Hitty Colleen felt very protected! Liam was dressed just like the Lifeguards who were watching the children in the water very carefully!

It was a beautiful, carefree day at the beach! A great way to spend a hot, sticky, Friday afternoon! The kids swam all day and built sandcastles on the shore! They ate a good lunch and ran about, shouting and laughing when their father joined them for the last part of the day! Hitty Colleen and Liam talked and told each other what they had been up to all the months they had been apart. All in all, everyone went home happy that day!

And the best part about it was Hitty Colleen and Liam didn’t have to carry a thing home!!!

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Liam settles in with Friar Ben…..for now!

After Colleen left, Friar Ben took Liam into the Church Rectory to show him where he would be staying until after the wedding. The place was small but just the right size for 2 bachelors! In the bedroom, there were some comfy-looking bunks!

“I hope you don’t mind taking the top bunk, young man, ” Friar Ben said. “These pegs of mine aren’t as new as yours!”

“No problem, Friar! My pleasure!” Liam chuckled.

“We have a lovely sitting room,” the Friar stated. “Perfect for long evening games of checkers by a roaring fire!”

“That sounds great! Oh, you play Chinese checkers too?! I love that game!” Liam said happily.

“But are you good at it?” the Friar asked and Liam just smiled.

“Our Carve Mom, Wanda, sent me with a gift for you, Friar!” Liam had almost forgotten.

“What a lovely afghan! She is such a thoughtful person!” The Friar said, thinking back to his days in Oklahoma. “This looks wonderful on my chair and will come in handy, I am sure! Winters in New England can be harsh, or so I’ve heard!”

“Well, no need to worry about Winter now, with all this humidity, Friar Ben! There’s no mistaking it for Summer tonight!”Liam joked.

“Very true, my boy! Let’s go back up to the garden and say good-night to Mary before we turn in!” said Friar Ben, putting his hand on Liam’s shoulder and calling his dog, Leia to his side.

“That sounds like a wonderful way to end a wonderful day!” and Liam followed Friar Ben up to the roof garden where Mary heard their evening prayers.

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A Tour of the Future Home!

Liam was very interested to see the house that Hitty Colleen was working on so hard. She was a little hesitant because she wasn’t as far along as she had hoped.

“There’s hardly anything in here just yet,” Colleen said nervously.

“It’s such a wonderful place! It has so much potential! I’m glad I can help you do the work! This is too much work for one little doll!” Liam reassured her.

Liam walked from the sparse living room into the kitchen. He laughed and said, “Colleen, you said you hadn’t gotten very far but you have already done the most important part!” Colleen was confused. She looked around and there was only one thing in the kitchen! Well, one thing besides the basket of apples that Penny was digging in for a snack. “Oh, you are silly!” Colleen finally realized what he meant! The perfect stove! She had looked high and low for the perfect stove! Of course The Baker would appreciate such a wonderful stove! It had a bread warmer and a pull-out tray! So many wonderful meals would be made on this stove! Penny would be eating apple pie soon, instead of just plain old apples!

The front door creaked open. Liam turned around to see a great big dog! “Now, that is a good-sized dog!” he said. “Is he ours?”

“That is our dog, Pugsley,” Colleen answered. “He has been looking after us while we’ve been by ourselves in this empty house! He’s made us feel a lot more secure at night!”

“Well, I can see why! He’s a big boy!” Liam said. Pugsley wagged his tail and licked Liam’s hand. “But a good boy, I see! Thanks for taking care of my girls, Pugsley! I’m sure we can be the best of friends.” Pugsley agreed with a thump of his tail!

Liam and Colleen went to the second floor. “What is this room?” he asked.

“I thought we could share a work room, ” she said. “You could have your desk on that side, with shelves for your books and ledgers. And I will have my sewing machine and work table over here! That way, we can be together and talk, even when we are working!”

“That is perfect, my dear,” Liam smiled.

They peeked across the hall to the bedroom that they would share after they were married.

“I have the wallpaper picked out for this room. It is going to be lovely!” Colleen said.

“It already is,” Liam answered softly. But he wasn’t looking at the room. He was looking at her!

Penny came running in, shouting, “Daddy, let me show you my room!”

“What pretty wallpaper you have in here, Penny!” Liam exclaimed. “Almost as pretty as you!”

Penny had been sharing a bowl of blueberries with her teddy. “I forgot I brought you a present too!”

“What is it?” Penny asked and for the first time noticed Liam’s pocket moving slightly.

“I brought you a tiny kitten! Isn’t she cute? I think she likes blueberries too, from the looks of it!” he laughed.

“I love her! Thank you, Daddy!” and she kissed him on the cheek.

Colleen smiled at the both of them, playing with the kitten. Liam looked up and followed her into the next room.

“This will be the nursery, ” she said with a hopeful sigh.

“As soon as we are settled we will fill this room, ” Liam said softly. “I think Penny should have a little brother, don’t you?”

“That is exactly what I thought! That would make me very happy!” Colleen looked at the cradle, knowing that it would soon be rocking a baby of her very own. She was very happy about that!

“Well, I shouldn’t keep the Friar waiting much longer,” Liam said to her after a long pause.

“I know, ” Colleen sighed. They both wished they could start their new life together right away. But there was much to be done before that could happen! Might as well get on with it! Liam was going to be staying with the Friar, so they may as well get him settled over there!

“I will walk with you and visit him, ” Colleen said. “Penny can stay here with Pomma.”

“Sounds good! I’ll see you soon, my Lucky Penny!” and he took Coolleen’s hand as they walked to the rectory.

Friar Ben was a jolly old man, who loved working in his garden. It was a special place for him, where he could think and pray. He paid extra special attention to his Mary garden. He hadn’t planted the flowers yet, he hadn’t been living here too long, but he had recently gotten some nice garden stones so he could plot out a space! The birds seemed to think they were pretty! Friar Ben gave a nice, hearty laugh when he turned around and saw the couple standing in his garden!

“Ah, Liam! I see you’ve finally arrived! Welcome!” he shook Liam’s hand and patted his shoulder. “I am glad I didn’t have to stay much longer without some company!”

“Well, no offense, Friar, but I hope I won’t be staying with you too long!” Liam smirked and squeezed Colleen’s hand.

Friar Ben let out a roar of laughter. “Me and Leia here will be sorry to see you go but we’ll make sure we get you out as soon as we can!” he patted his dog on the head. “Everyone is looking forward to your wedding! Once the church is built, I will need another priest to help out so, you see, you won’t be able to stay here forever anyway!”

They all laughed for a few moments, then Hitty Colleen said, “Well, gentlemen, I will leave you two to get better aquainted! I’ll bring some dinner over later!”

“That would be wonderful, ” Friar Ben exclaimed. Then turning to Liam, he said, “Your future wife is a fabulous cook! She has been taking good care of me until we get a kitchen up and running here!”

“Then Liam can cook for you, Friar! He is even better than I am!”Colleen answered. She hugged Liam good-bye and started for home, with a happy smile on her face!

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New Beginnings! Liam comes home!

The bakery wasn’t up and running yet but it was close! All the Hittys knew that soon Liam the Baker was going to arrive and teach Hitty Esther how to run the bakery! Hitty Annabel would be doing the cooking and Hitty Raggedy Ann would be waiting on tables but Hitty Esther would run the show! She had a big personality and was good at being in charge! Hitty Esther was in the bakery one day, looking at the new front counter and daydreaming about how wonderful it would be to run this shop with her Hitty sisters when a man came walking through her door!

“I’m sorry, sir! We aren’t quite ready for customers yet! But I will give you a yummy cinnamon bun if you promise to come back when we are open for business!” she said.

He smiled and something in that smile looked familiar. She had never met this man before but she was sure she knew him somehow! “You must be Esther! I am Liam the baker!” he said with a grin. “You won’t need much training to run this place! Free samples are a great way to get repeat customers!”

Of course, it was Liam! Hitty Colleen was engaged to marry him and she had talked about him so much that Hitty Esther practically DID know him, even though they had never met before! He placed a fancy gold cash register on the counter and said, “With all the customers you’ll have, you will need this!”

Hitty Esther went to gather the girls to come and say hello to Liam! Colleen was so nervous at seeing her fiance, she let everyone go before her and took the moment alone to catch her breath! Everyone was thrilled to meet Liam! Just like Esther, they all felt like they had known him forever from all of Colleen’s talk! But where, oh, where was his darling Colleen! He had a gift for her and he had waited so long to see her again!

Before he could even ask the others about her, Colleen came through the door! “Liam! You’re finally here!” she said happily. Everyone was so happy for her! It had been a difficult wait! Liam put his arms around her. “I promise I will never leave you again, my dear,” he whispered sweetly. All the girls smiled at them!

Liam laughed and said, “I almost forgot! I brought you a gift! Our carver Mom, Wanda, made this for me to give to you to celebrate my homecoming!” He handed Colleen a beautiful red shawl that was so lovely, she put it right on, even though it was July!

“That was so sweet of her, and it is so lovely, but I’m sure she knows that all I really wanted was you!” Colleen whispered in his ear.  Liam was so happy he didn’t believe this day could get any better and hugged Colleen tightly once again! But it was going to get better! There was a rustle at the door. Hitty Elf Pomma had taken little Penny out for a walk. They had just gotten back when they saw everyone was gathered in the bakery!

Little Penny was an orphan who had come to live with Hitty Colleen. Hitty Elf Pomma had become her good friend and looked after her while Colleen was trying to get the house ready to be lived in! Every night, at bedtime, Hitty Colleen told Penny about Liam and how wonderful it would be when he finally arrived. Then, Liam and Colleen would get married and become Penny’s mother and father! Penny wanted this more than anything in the world!

Penny was so excited to see Liam that she rushed right to him! Liam was very happy to meet her too because he and Colleen wanted to have a big, happy family! The sooner, the better! Liam picked Penny up and tossed her about and she landed in a loving hug! “Daddy!” she shouted. “I’ve always wanted someone to call me that!” Liam laughed. “Looks like you are my Lucky Penny!”

All the Hittys had tears in their eyes! Penny was such a sweet child and they all loved her very much. Seeing her this happy made them all a little weepy! All the Hittys had someone to live with and keep company. Hitty Carmen and Marie, the china doll, lived in a cute green house that their person had built just for them! This bakery was a renovated old house and the second and third floor were Hitty Esther, Hitty Annabel, and Hitty Raggedy Ann’s new home.Hitty Elf Pomma lived in her tree trunk house with just some woodland creatures for company but that was how she liked it! Until now, Hitty Colleen had been alone with Penny in a huge, empty house that needed a lot of work! Liam wouldn’t be living with them just yet. He would be living with Friar Ben at the Church Rectory until he and Colleen were married but at least he was here! And they would spend every day together, working on their house together, making it into a home for their little family! It was a good day for all the Hittys! It was a new beginning!

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