Thursday, April 24, 2008

Mother Marianne's Avid Readers

The two girls sat against the wall, their knees pulled up, as they got lost in their books Wednesday. Samantha Mussatto, 10, found herself sailing the ocean to Ireland as she turned the pages of The Wanderer by Sharon Creech. Her sister, Amanda, 7, was caught up in a Boxcar Children Special, The Great Shark Mystery, by Gertrude Chandler Warner.

But what could be as fun as solving a shark mystery, or following the journals of kids crossing the Atlantic?

How about helping Mary Schmitt stuff freshly made sandwiches into pastic bags? Which they had done just minutes before.

Deacon Gil Nadeau made a bunch of sandwiches, and Mary took over to bag and place them in containers.

“The kids were a big help to Mary, because with her arthritic fingers, she could barely zip-lock the bags,” said Joanne Lockwood.

Then a woman came in with her toddlers and infant. Samantha jumped up to carry a tray of food for the woman’s children, and Amanda pushed the baby stroller into the dining room.

“When I say I’m working at the soup kitchen,” said their grandmother, Diane Hnat, “now they know what I’m talking about.”

Besides being the youngest volunteers at Mother Marianne’s West Side Kitchen, they also traveled the farthest – from Hookset, New Hampshire. Schools there are on spring break this week, which is allowing the family to spend time with grandma. And her soup kitchen family.

So what did they think?

“It was cool!” the girls chimed in unison.

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