hev a kind of a spree on it when I got through choosin' Rose's weddin'
present, but I guess the pig'll he v to help me out."
The old man filled one of the glasses from the pitcher, pulled up the
kitchen shades to the top, put both hands in his pockets, and walked
solemnly round the table, gazing at his offering from every possible
point of view.
There had been three lemonade sets in the window of a Biddeford crockery
store when Mr. Wiley chanced to pass by, and he had brought home the
blue and green one on approval.
To the casual eye it would have appeared as quite uniquely hideous until
the red and yellow or the purple and orange ones had been seen; after
that, no human being could have made a decision, where each was so
unparalleled in its ugliness, and Old Kennebec's confusion of mind would
have been perfectly understood by the connoisseur.
"How do you like it with the lemonade in, mother?" he inquired eagerly.
"The thing that plagues me most is that the red an' yaller one I hed
home last week lights up better'n this, an' I believe I'll settle on
that; for as I was thinkin' last night in bed, lemonade is mostly an
evenin' drink an' Rose won't be usin' the set much by daylight. Root
beer looks the han'somest in this purple set, but Rose loves lemonade
better'n beer, so I guess I'll pack up this one an' change it to-morrer.
Mebbe when I get it out o' sight an' give the lemonade to the pig I'll
be easier in my mind."
In the opinion of the community at large Stephen's forehandedness in the
matter of preparations for his marriage was imprudence, and his desire
for neatness and beauty flagrant extravagance. The house itself was a
foolish idea, it was thought, but there were extenuating circumstances,
for the maiden aunt really needed a home, and Rufus was likely to marry
before long and take his wife to the River Farm. It was to be hoped in
his case that he would avoid the snares of beauty and choose a good
stout girl who would bring the dairy back to what it was in Mrs.
All winter long Stephen labored on the inside of the cottage, mostly by
himself. He learned all trades in succession, Love being his only
master. He had many odd days to spare from his farm work, and if he had
not found days he would have taken nights. Scarcely a nail was driven
without Rose's advice; and when the plastering was hard and dry, the
wall-papers were the result of weeks of consultation.
Among the quiet joys of life there is probably no other so deep, so
sweet, so full of trembling hope and delight, as the building and making
of a home,--a home where two lives are to be merged in one and flow on
together, a home full of mysterious and delicious possibilities, hidden
in a future which is always rose-colored.
Rose's sweet little nature broadened under Stephen's influence; but she
had her moments of discontent and unrest, always followed quickly byDownload<<BackPagesMainNext>>