Kids Funny


Olivia shut the fridge door with a sigh and listened out for signs of movement from her six-year-old son. Or rather, six and three quarters, as he frequently corrected her and her husband, Jason.

“What’s up, Ma?” a tremulous voice asked from the top of the stairs. Corey knew if his mother raised her voice it meant trouble. Olivia enjoyed quiet pursuits, such as meditation and crocheting (“means I can better tolerate your drumming and your Dad’s bedroom DJing practice” she had explained to Corey once).

“Care to tell me why my eggs are all rolling around like drunks?”

There was a giggle at that and Olivia allowed her mouth to twitch too before gathering her composure when Corey at last presented himself.

“I wanted to use the egg box for my time capsule, Ma,” Corey answered, the last word coming out like a bleat.

Olivia raised her eyebrows up to meet her brown bangs. Her brightly beaded necklaces rattled where she folded her arms across them.

“Oh I see. Well, let’s hope you’ve made the mother hen proud that her cradle is being put to such use.”

Corey looked so guilty at the accusation of cradle-snatching, Olivia laughed and dropped the act.

“C’mere,” she said, and tousled the boy’s field mouse brown locks, taking after hers in color but with a natural wave she could never hope to achieve through her styling tools. “How are you getting on with your project anyway, sweetheart?”

Corey’s face lit up. “Awesome! The little holes in the box are good to have as then it makes me only put small things in. I gotta carry it up to Mrs Higgins’ classroom so I can’t have it be too heavy as that room is in the roof.” Corey used an emphasis on ‘roof’ such as is normally given to describe the heights of such structures as the Eiffel Tower or the distance from Earth to Pluto.

“Oh yeah? So what’s in this box of wonders?”

“It’s not finished yet but I’m keeping a list and I’ll read it to you and Daddy later. I gotta finish painting it too. Do we have any golden sparkly paint?”

“I’ll look for it after dinner. And I’m looking forward to hearing the list. This will tell future generations what our lives were like, so you’ve got to bear that in mind Corey-baby.”

“Yes Ma I know, Mrs Higgins already explained it.”

“Okay then. Run along while I fix dinner then and let’s hope my eggs sober up meanwhile, huh?”

Corey took the instruction to heart and sprinted up the stairs to his bedroom while doing his best chicken impression, flapping his arms and cackling.

* * *

Shortly after Jason arrived home from work the family sat at the table for dinner . Olivia plated up pork chops and the three took turns passing the salad bowl around.

“Egg and satsuma in a salad together…don’t think I’ve seen that before,” Jason pointed out, not unkindly. His wife’s kookiness spilling over into the kitchen resulted in some memorable meals, but also some good ones. The salad was topped with glistening pomegranate seeds which looked like they may have come from one of Olivia’s many bracelets.

Olivia shot him a look. “Gwen Partridge recommended it in her latest vlog, so I thought we’d give it a shot.”

“Well, if it's got the Gwen Partridge seal of approval...cheers everyone!” Jason and Olivia clinked their wine glasses against Corey’s plastic cup of squash. They munched for a while in silence, punctuated by approving noises from Jason.

“Mommy-Daddy-can-I-read-you-my-list?” The rush of words indicated Corey would not be able to keep it to himself much longer anyway. His left hand had kept wandering to where he had placed it beside his plate to straighten it up, before deciding that was wrong, turning it around, shifting it a degree, that Olivia feared he might rub off the ink before he got to read it.

“Oh, is this for the time capsule thing?” asked Jason. “I had great fun making mine at school. In fact, me and my buddy Ralph worked on ours together…”

Corey squirmed through the anecdote until Olivia politely cleared her throat and tilted her head towards her son.

“…and he swears that baseball card would be worth a fortune now only neither of us can remember exactly where we buried it,” Jason finally finished. “Anyway, Corey, your list. Spill the beans.”

Corey glanced at the beans in his salad, wondering for a second if he was expected to tip them off his plate. He then glanced at his list and thankfully, for the carpet’s sake, became distracted again. He rustled his piece of paper and prepared to address the nation.

“In my time capsule I have put, 1) my eraser shaped like Pikachu, 2) a coin with this year on it, 3) mom’s ring with the pink flower on it…(Olivia exchanged a look with Jason which indicated one of them would be extracting that item before the time capsule went to school) 4) the keyring that makes a noise that Mikey gave me…

Remembering the size of the egg box and figuring this would take a while, Olivia resumed cutting her pork chop. Jason took that as permission for him to do the same. They chewed while Corey recited.

“…and finally number 12. Woody.”

Olivia’s mouthful went down the wrong way and she made a strangled noise. Jason’s eyes darted from her to his son.

“Woody?” he asked. “As in your pet hamster Woody?”

“Of course, Daddy!” said Corey. “Mia from Mr Stobbart’s class said hamsters don’t live very long and putting him in the capsule would mean he would live looooonnnng into the future.”

“And you’ve already put Woody into this capsule?”

“Yes Daddy.” Corey rolled his eyes as though he were explaining to a child of his own.

Jason rose. “Okay, Cores-lite, you’d better take me to your capsule.”

“But Daddy, Ma hasn’t finished her dinner.”

Still trying to dislodge a bit of pork chop, Olivia waved at them with her napkin and managed to hiss, “Go.”

After a few minutes, Corey came back, followed by Jason who was lifting the hamster aloft like he’d dug up a prize potato.

“One hamster rescued from his cardboard fate, m’lady,” Jason said.

“That’s great, but please go wash your hands now. You too, Corey. And Corey?”

“Yes Ma?”

“When you get back you and I are going to have a discussion about how time capsules really work.”

October 08, 2020 07:14

You must sign up or log in to submit a comment.


Justin Dyer
04:16 Oct 15, 2020

This was an absolutely adorable read. Listening (as it was easy to hear the characters in my head) to the mother and son talk was so smooth and believable. You could feel the palpable excitement from the child, and the encouragement from both the mother and father helped to make me excited as well. The ending was perfect, adding to the bond you were able to share with the family in such a short story. The comedic mention of the hamster with the childlike viewpoint of how time capsules work was just pieced together so well. Well done!


Karen McDermott
10:00 Oct 15, 2020

Aw shucks, thank you so much Justin! It did mark a bit of a departure from my usual whacky stuff, it felt good to write something wholesome for once :)


Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply
Jonathan Blaauw
16:23 Oct 08, 2020

I do so enjoy your stories and it's so good that you're writing regularly on here again (now that I've said that, your next release will probably be 2021 😂). The best part about reading your stuff is there seems to be a delightful strangeness about you, in a Douglas Adams/Terry Pratchett kind of way. Your stories are memorable because they're... Different. And yet, beneath it all are the hallmarks of quality writing. Right from the start, Corey's behaviour and way of speaking ground him as a character for the reader and make him stand ou...


Karen McDermott
10:10 Oct 15, 2020

What can I say - you gave me the kick I needed to get writing again. It also helps that I'm enjoying Reedsy far more than the other sites I (used to) regularly visit, which are all full of disgusting 'news' at the moment. Who wants that?! I am delighted to be in the same camp as Adams and Pratchett. And indeed quoted that to the family member I was with at the time. And will probably mention it eventually in Christmas cards to the rest.


Show 0 replies
Show 1 reply

Bring your short stories to life

Fuse character, story, and conflict with tools in the Reedsy Book Editor. 100% free.