By: Riley Berkland

       "Are they here yet?" I asked impatiently. "Almost" my mema replied calmly. I plopped down on the stairs by the front door waiting for my cousins that I rarely ever get to see, to arrive. "I wish they lived here, in Missouri, with their loving family!" I said dramatically. "Oh Riley, they only live about 45 minutes away." mema chuckles. "Yeah," I admit, "but they live in Kansas!" "At least they don't live in a different country." She pointed out.

       "They're here!" my brother, David, called from the dinning room next to us. I popped up like a firework on the 4th of July. "Really!?" I asked excitedly. I jumped up and ran next to him and looked out the window, only to see an empty driveway. "Where are they" I demanded as my eyes searched up and down the street. "Oops! Wrong car!" David said mischievously. "Oh, you little...." my sentence was cut of by the sound of a car door opening. David and I's heads both turned to look for the source of the sound. My heart leaped when I saw my little red headed cousin, Mikala, hop out of her car. "Mikala!!!" I screamed, through the screen door while waving my hands like crazy.

       Mikala turned her head to see who had shouted, when she saw me her eyes lit up and she started charging towards the front door. I also ran to the front door and flung it open and looked to see Mikala charging at me like a bull after a red flag. "Watch out!!!" Mema cried right before we collided. She had almost knocked me over but I was ready for the impact. I vaguely remember my Aunt Michelle and little 1 year old cousin, Caleb, come inside, all I remember is thinking this was the happiest I could ever be. But that was before tonight.

       It had been about 4 or so hours since the Barnharts (cousins, Mikala, Caleb, Aunt Michelle) had arrived. David was sitting on the couch with the remote in his hand, while Mikala sat sprawled on the floor. I glance at the clock, it read 3:30. My attention snapped back to the T.V when I heard Mikala's voice whine. "No! Put Good Luck Charlie back on!!" I looked at the T.V, it was blank. I looked at David confused, the I saw Ben 10's face flash onto the screen. No No No No!!! I wanted to scream. But instead I looked straight at David then said "Would you please change the channel?" I said politely. A brick wall would have responded more than David does when their is technology involved. "Remember your promise." I said through gritted teeth. I guess I better tell you what the promise was because that is the only way for you to understand my annoyance.

       It was yesterday when David made his proposal. I was sitting on Mema's bed watching T.V when he walked in, "Get up, I am watching Ben 10." he said then tried to shove me off the bed. "No!" I said staring at him, "I would if you have something to offer me in return." I said seeing if he would offer anything. There was a long pause before he spoke, "Okay, How about this. If I can watch Ben 10 then we won't AT ALL tomorrow when Mikala comes." Another long pause before any one spoke. "Alright, but first you have to swear on ALL your Ben 10 toys." I said joking, but David took it seriously. He held up his right hand, "I swear on ALL my Ben 10 toys!" he pledged. "Deal." I said then tossed the remote to him.

"David would you PLEASE change the channel







"Fine." David huffed then changed the channel, finally.

       "Yay!!" Mikala cheered as the channel flipped then was silent as the new episode started. While we were watching the show I heard some adults voices in the kitchen. I cast my ears out to try and figure out who it was. Mom and Dad, I wonder what they are talking about? I strained my ears to try and figure out what they were talking about. Dang'it, I am too far away. I was getting ready to go get a "drink" in the kitchen when my mom ran out and jogged up the stairs. Strange I thought. In barely a minute mom was back down stairs and in the kitchen. Right after that she came into the living room. "Turn off the T.V and get your shoes on."

       "Where are we going?" David asked as Mom took the remote and snapped the T.V off. "You'll have to wait and see. Now get your shoes on, also grab a jacket!" she ordered then dashed out of the room. Mikala and I quickly got up and ran upstairs to get our shoes and jackets. When we can back downstairs David had just gotten up and started to put his shoes on. Wow, he is really slow today!! I looked at myself, I had put my shoes on, got a jacket, repelled up my hair, and grabbed a little neon green purse, plus put some money into it. Mikala and I sat there and watched David slowly put his shoes, socks, and jacket up.

      "Are you guys ready to go?" Dad asked just as David put on his jacket. "Yep! Also where are we going?" I replied. "Remember that place you went for your school field trip?" Dad asked. "The aquarium?" I asked getting excited. "That is where we are going." he said simply. I started jumping up and down and squealing like a giddy high school girl. "Alright then, lets go."

       The drive there went by in a blur. When we arrived in no time we were taking our picture at the beginning right before we went into the first room/area. After we were done with our picture on our right a set of decorated sliding doors led us into the first room. It was probably the most boring to most people, but I found it breath taking. We walked in to find ourselves in a pitch black room with tanks rapped around the walls with fish that glowed in the dark. I closed my eyes and just let the amazing feeling seep into my skin. "Wow!" Mikala gasped. She stood there, as still as a statue. Then out of the blue she bolted straight the glass and pressed her face against it. "Well this is amazing." Dad said. "If you think this is good, then you will love everything in here! I hoped you planned on us being here a while!" I replied. "What else is there" Mikala asked eagerly once she pried her face of the glass. "You'll have to wait and see." I said mystically then walked over to the next pair of sliding doors. We saw many more fish before we came across my next favorite part, the tide pool.

       "What is thisjQuery21008805855163373053_1401454182456" Mikala asked and pointed at the medium sized tide pool. "I's called a tide pool, it has a bunch of sea animals in it and you get to touch them!" I explained excitedly. I looked at Mikala to see that she looked scared. "It's okay. Just use one or two fingers and just touch them gently. Like this." I put two fingers into the water and touched a small crab. "See? There is nothin' to it." Mikala gently put two fingers in and touched the same crab "Why didn't it pinch me?" she asked confused. "I don't know? But all the animals in here CAN'T hurt you." "Okay!" she said they started to chase a little small blue fish. By the time we left the tide pool I had touched a shrimp, crab, the little blue fish, sea plants, and a sea slug that even David was scared to touch.

       "Got it!" Mikala had cried when she finally touched her little blue fish she had named Spedo. The next section we went to was my next favorite, the sting ray playground. It was a big pool with a bunch of sting rays and a few eels that had a little underground tunnel that you could crawl around in and get a closer look at the animals. After we spent a LONG time there we went to the gift shop. Mikala and I ended up getting two matching sparkly pink and green stuffed animal turtles. David had gotten a Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle Lego set and we got my little sister, Raegan, and Mikala's little brother, Caleb, both a matching green clown fish stuffed animal. We had gotten matching stuffed animals since the Barnhart's were moving all the way to Ashland,Kansas which was almost 7 hours away so we would have something to remember each other.

        When we got home we decided that I would open my presents early from the Barnhart's because they were moving. When I got done opening the one from the Barnhart's I had gotten some new gel pens, a REALLY cool night light that changed colors, and a Warriors book that completed the first series. Once we moved away the trash I was shocked to see two more bags in front of me. "Open that one first" Mema said pointing to the bag on the right. I opened it to find a really cute pink and black journal, it also had a note. "Read it out loud!" my Aunt Kristin said. Oh yeah, when we got home we were all shocked to find that my Aunt Kristin and Uncle Ryan had come over for dinner. Now back to the story.

       "This is for you to take on your trip with you Aunt Kristin and Mema to write about what you do." I said repeating the note. "What trip??" I asked looking at Aunt Kristin and Mema confused. "The next present will tell you." Mema said simply. I picked the next bag and found a book, my mouth dropped open. "What does it say!!???" Mikala asked eagerly. "Walt Disney World."