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Once Upon a Time…

One day, when I was teaching fourth grade writing, I was demonstrating for my class how to write a story from scratch.  We had just finished reading The Indian in the Cupboard together, so with that as my inspiration I decided to write a short story about a magic cupboard that would make food in a cookbook come to life. This was the story I came up with on the spot (although I did have the words “dilettante” and “disencumber” written down on a sticky note because I had just seen them in the dictionary and wanted to use them if I could):

Miss Sizzle and the Magic Cupboard

Once upon a time there was a teacher named Miss Sizzle.  She had a huge cabinet filled with pencils. This cabinet was no ordinary cabinet. Whenever Miss Sizzle turned the key, she heard a strange noise, but she could never quite put a finger on what the noise was.

One day Miss Sizzle took everything out of the cabinet so she could reorganize her pencil collection. When she was done, there was so much extra space that she put her favorite book in too.

The book was called The Art of Delicious: Recipes for the Culinary Dilettante.  Miss Sizzle left it open to the page entitled, “How to Disencumber a Cucumber, and Other Things to Do With Vegetables,” and left to bring the students to the library.

When they got back, one of her students, Jacques, said, “What is that delectable smell?”

“I think it’s coming from the pencil cupboard,” added Joy.

“Let’s open it up and see,” said Miss Sizzle.  Miss Sizzle took out her key and fitted it into the lock. She slowly turned it and opened the door.

“Wowzers!” she exclaimed. “How did that get in here!?”  Inside the cabinet was a large bowl of tzaziki sauce and a plate of fresh pitas, just like in the recipe. “Let’s eat lunch here today,” suggested Miss Sizzle.

From that day on, Miss Sizzle’s fourth grade class never went down to lunch anymore.

“I just can’t figure out why they lost their appetite,” said the cafeteria monitor.

And the fourth graders never told.

And that is how this blog got its name.

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