Wild, Wild West
Sod House Morning

Sod House Morning
Reading Level
     edHelper's suggested reading level:   grades 3 to 4
     Flesch-Kincaid grade level:   3.71

     challenging words:    flue, lighted, packhorse, perked, tallow, livestock, manure, frying, leading, settled, shivered, piled, hopefully, darkness, chips, sometime
     content words:    When Dad

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Sod House Morning
By Mary Lynn Bushong

1     Molly shivered in the darkness. She knew it was morning, but it didn't look that way. She could see the dim outline of Mama in front of the small iron stove. Mama opened the small door and poked at the pile of ash inside. She tossed in some buffalo chips from the bucket at her feet.
2     Molly huddled more deeply under her quilt, pulling it up around her ears. She could see the warm red glow start to grow through the narrow grill. It would be warmer soon.
3     Mama broke the ice in the water bucket. She fished out the frozen chunks and dropped them into a pot on top of the stove.
4     "Good morning, Mama," Molly whispered to her mother.
5     "Good morning, Molly," said Mama softly. "Is your sister awake yet?"
6     Molly shook her head no. It was easy to see and hear what the others were doing. They all lived and slept in the same room.
7     "I need you to make sure the fire keeps going while I get breakfast started. You know how quickly these chips burn," said Mama.
8     Molly nodded her head. She wrapped the bed quilt around herself and shuffled over to sit near the stove. At least it would be warmer there. No matter how many times she did it, she still didn't like handling the chips. Back in the East, they would never have burned manure to cook and keep themselves warm.
9     Seth woke as Mama was making biscuits. He looked over at the chip bucket near the stove and got right up. He quickly pulled on his warmest clothes before shoving his feet into boots. Just as Molly pulled the last chip from the bucket, he grabbed it and went outside.

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