Archive for the ‘Havenwood School’ Category

Brand new peek at HAVENWOOD TALES Beginnings

D.J. Houston, Author

There were fourteen of us, the last of Havenwood Township’s Depression-era babies born in a flurry before America’s role in the war was sealed at Pearl Harbor . . .

Out In The Country by Paula Ford

Out In The Country by Paula Ford

And while none of us were the first young minds fresh off the farm to gather there, nor destined to be the last, the question as to how Miss Greenlee could captivate the attention of that motley gang of six and seven-year-old renegades I found myself surrounded by – much less ever teach us the same subject at the same time – might easily beg for a miracle. But two things were certain . . .



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A Fresh Peek at HAVENWOOD TALES Beginnings

by D.J. Houston

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Baseball Wisdom . . .

Timmy kept pacing the front yard like a penned up billy goat, clenching his teeth and slamming a battered baseball back and forth with a stinging hand against his old stitched-up catcher’s mitt while he muttered out loud to himself.

He was obviously suffering his own case of walloping doubts about my having to start going to school.

In the first place, it was his school.  And the idea of his naïve, snot-nosed little sister attending that same school would never fit in with his master plan, even if he had one.  But it was the only school around so he had no choice:

It was high time to lay some ground rules . . .

C L I C K  H E R E  for Questionable Advice 😉

 D.J. Houston, Author

Copyright©2007, 2012 D.J. Houston. All Rights Reserved.

Funny Stories – Havenwood School – Social Commentary – American Family – Mystery Novel

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Inspirations from HAVENWOOD TALES Beginnings

D.J. Houston, Author

Art supplies kept mysteriously appearing on my table at school . . .

When I wasn’t reading, I was doing chalk or pencil drawings and watercolor paintings of the birds and flowers and forests I knew.

I even made my first attempt to draw the human face — a silhouette profile of Mister Walling, infused with a golden light.

I was adding the finishing touches when I felt Miss Greenlee’s presence arrive behind me like a soft sigh . . .

C L I C K  H E R E  for “Art of Dreamers”

Paranormal Mystery – Inspirations – Adventure – American Literature Treasures

Copyright©2009, 2012 D.J. Houston. All Rights Reserved.

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Excerpts from the novel HAVENWOOD TALES Beginnings 

D.J. Houston, Author


I had the most godawful urge to stick my tongue out at spiteful, old Miss Hickey, the Latin teacher. 

Her mission in life since before she was born had apparently been to hate anything and everything new and different; that much seemed obvious. But I’d figured out enough about human nature to know that it probably wasn’t really me she was mad at . . .

I did put an end to her using me for a firing range, though. Daring, considering she had that willow switch hidden under her desk . . .

C L I C K   H E R E

Old old booksMystery Story – Coming of Age Story – Fantasy Fiction – American Tall Tales

Copyright©2012, 2014 D.J. Houston. All Rights Reserved.

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Havenwood Halloween Halloween was due on a Thursday . . .

As school was dismissing on Wednesday, Miss Greenlee made another of her famous announcements — only this time with an added caveat that was to change life as I knew it before nightfall the next day.

The innocuous sounding part was, “Anyone who would like to wear a costume to school tomorrow for Halloween may do so.”

That in itself was enough to conjure a roomful of mixed emotions. But the caveat was the kicker.

“You will please design your costume by yourself.”


A peek at HAVENWOOD Tales Beginnings by D.J. Houston

Copyright©2007, 2013 D.J. Houston. All Rights Reserved.

Humorous Stories – Mystery Novel – Intrigue – Literary Fiction Books – Fantasy Fiction

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. . . She didn’t look at all like the other teachers in their plain, prim dresses and drab, catalog suits.

Miss Greenlee wore lovely, smart blouses from sophisticated foreign lands, and skirts splashed with patterns of butterflies or colorful birds or bold, bright stripes running down them — or flowers you could almost smell like a flow of perfume from the quality fabrics . . .

On the opposite end of the food chain, however, I was shocked to discover one teacher at Havenwood School who was certifiably, pure awful . . .

Naturally, I figured she was as friendly as a rattlesnake with rabies . . .


Mystery Story – Fantasy Fiction – Inspiring Stories – American Literature Treasures

~ from the coming novel HAVENWOOD Tales Beginnings ~

 D.J. Houston, Author

Copyright©2007, 2012 D.J. Houston. All Rights Reserved.

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Excerpts from the novel HAVENWOOD TALES Beginnings


Spring blossomsRain was another week coming to wash the sin from the charred remains of Peterson’s Salvage Yard, leaving behind no scarcity of pristine air to clear my head and lungs as I wandered the woods and countryside. Any desire for vengeance that haunted me after the fire was soon purged from my heart by the merciful, relentless beauty of Spring in Havenwood.

In the meadows and pastures, lines of fat raindrops clung like jewels to the undersides of new branches too green to absorb them, backlit by a cautious sun. Yellow-budding tulip trees drank thirstily of the fresh, pooled rain. And redbuds and dogwoods bloomed pink and white in the patches of light and shadow cast by canopies of hardwood trees, greening to life in the fertile woodlands.

I soon returned to school to discover all manner of winged creature, lending song and sound and motion to the Spring outside our classroom . . .

Ruby throated hummingbirdRuby-throated hummingbirds zoomed on invisible wings from flower to flower, sharing nectar with the honeybees in the gardens we’d planted. And as the apple orchards sprinkled their delicate blossoms onto the breezes, sweet brown wrens whistled duets with the chickadees and chirping sparrows to the counterpoint, drumming staccato of woodpeckers courting their mates.

I took to drawing pictures of whatever Mother Nature offered those halcyon days, using up boxes of colored chalk and watercolor paints faster than art supply mail orders could arrive.

I was also reading every book I could get my hands on.  And because I was so far ahead in Arithmetic and so hungry for Art and Reading, Miss Greenlee made a special place for me at the back of the classroom where I could spread out my work on a nice long table with a window view.

Gnarly old Miss Hickey, the Latin teacher, disapproved, of course.

I caught her peeking through the windows before she could duck. But she didn’t dare complain to Mister Attabee; he’d already put her in her place that famous day under the hickory tree in the schoolyard, defending Miss Greenlee’s artistic license to do whatever she pleased.

Maybe she wanted her own artistic license. Maybe she was just jealous. But whatever the case, “Hickey Witch” just had to make her spiteful point by glaring at me with those snaky eyes and that squinched up face of hers whenever I passed her classroom door on my way to the library . . .

C O N T I N U E D  – C L I CK  for PART II

D.J. Houston, Author

Copyright©2008, 2014 D.J. Houston. All Rights Reserved.

From the novel HAVENWOOD TALES Beginnings

Magical Mystery – Inspiring Stories – Life Lessons – Artists of Spring – Heartland America

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