Chapter Six: Taco Night

She heard the chaos before she even walked into her grandpa’s house that afternoon. Jeff was at it again, pestering Jill until she started screaming. It was a recipe she could predict every time. Jill would get annoyed with Jeff and Jeff would ramp up his annoying behavior until Jill screamed. A + B = C. Every time.

Kip had three younger siblings. She always pictures the stick-figure window cling on the back of her mom’s minivan when she thinks about her siblings.

stick figures

Kip laughed out loud as she thought about the fact that Jeff wasn’t born yet when her mom put the stick figure family on the car so she thinks of him as the dog. The dog is long gone so it works out perfectly. In so many ways.

Kip’s brother Joe is in the fourth grade and already had a shelf of championship trophies from football, basketball, and baseball. Her sister Jill was the dramatic one and she was six years younger than Kip and in first grade. Oh boy, that girl could change her moods like flipping a lightswitch. Then there was the baby of the family who got what he wanted ALL the time…Jeff. Jeff was only four years old and he already knew how to rule a household.

Yep, Kipalee had three siblings named Joe, Jill, and Jeff. No more Fabio romance novel names for her parents. She was the only “lucky” one. Faith Hill’s The Lucky One ran through her mind as she chuckled to herself about her luck in the name department.

Kip’s mom was preparing dinner, looking exhausted. “Who could blame her with this crew?” she thought as she smiled at her mom.

“How was your second day honey?” Kip’s mom asked. “Did you have a great day again?”

Kip decided long ago that she was never going to place any more burdens on her family than they already had. “It was good. That nice girl, Susan, asked me to come to her barn to meet her horse next weekend.” Kip only told her parents the part of her story they want to hear, the part that leads to them smiling sweetly at her, thanking their lucky stars that she was so easy.

Kip’s dad rushed in, gave her mom a peck on the cheek and grabbed a handful of the tortilla chips her mom had set out to accompany the tacos they were having for dinner. He headed toward the stairs as he said, “So sorry honey, I have to head back to work for a meeting. We have an important project starting up tomorrow and we are not ready at all.”

Kip’s dad was an electrical engineer who works for a small company that makes all sorts of springs. Kip’s mind always wandered when her dad described the different kinds of springs they make…the only thing she knew for sure is that they are not bed springs and they are not Slinkies. The rest of what he told her went in one ear and out the other.

Kip’s mom sighed heavily as she surveyed the feast she was cooking. She put a weak smile on her face as she asked Kip, “Will you please let your brothers and sister know that it is dinner time?”

Kip went into the living room, untangled Jeff and Jill as they were fighting over a toy, and escorted them into the kitchen before heading to the backyard to get Joe.

“Hey Joe, it’s time for dinner,” Kip approached Joe, careful not to get in the way of the bat he was swinging. Sometimes Kip got jealous of Joe. He was like the perfect child in all the ways–he was handsome with his curly light-brown hair and his dimples, he was smarter than everyone in the family added together, and he was an incredible athlete. Oh yeah, he was also one of the nicest people ever. Just being around him was comforting for Kip

“Is dad eating with us tonight?” Joe asked Kip, “Or does he have a meeting again?”

Kip scanned his big hazel eyes to see if she could spot any disappointment. Nope, he just looked curious. Man, she wished she could be like Joe…just content no matter what. She responded, “They have a new project starting tomorrow so he has to go back to work.”

“Well, at least grandpa will be there. He wouldn’t miss taco night!” Kip and Joe chuckled together as they thought about their big, jolly grandpa who loved mexican food. He might have little patience with the kids, especially when Jill and Jeff make messes, but he was very fun to have at the dinner table. He always told mildly inappropriate jokes that made their mom blush and say, “Dad!” in an accusatory tone.

Yep. This family might be a hot mess, but it was always entertaining. And, it was her’s. No matter where they lived, no matter what school they went to, no matter the challenges they face, they would face them together. Well, except for Kip’s school challenges. Those she was determined to face alone. She needed to be a help to her family, not a burden.

They all sat down to dinner and passed around the fixings for tacos. If someone were to look in the window, they would see a picture-perfect family sharing a meal. But, things are not always as they seem, are they?

Questions for my editors:

  1. Kip’s family is introduced in this chapter. How does knowing more about Kip’s family help you understand Kip better?
  2. What details about Kip’s family did you connect with?
  3. What questions do you have about Kip’s family?
  4. Are there any parts where more detail should be added? If so, which parts and what suggestions do you have?
  5. Did you learn any new words in this chapter? If so, what were the words you learned?
  6. Always let me know if you find grammatical errors.

Please put your edits in the comments on this post. I will comment back to you and make changes to the chapter based upon your feedback. I can’t wait to learn from you!

Behind the scenes info:

I think that I already mentioned that my mom and her family lived in Jackson when they were growing up. My mom moved to Grand Rapids after college because that is where my dad’s family lived, so I grew up in Grand Rapids. However, we spent lots of time in Jackson because we went back to visit my mom’s family a lot.

My mom really did have siblings named Joe, Jill, and Jeff. She was the only one with an unusual name. She laughed about that with us often.

I am not sure that the descriptions I give my mom’s siblings are completely accurate–you’d have to ask my grandpa about that. Uncle Jeff and Aunt Jill, I hope you aren’t mad at me about the descriptions I gave you. Remember, this is fiction. Or is it?

73 thoughts on “Chapter Six: Taco Night”

  1. How I understand Kip better is because you learn more about her family and how happy she is with her family.My favorite details I liked about was how she talked about her grandpa in so many details.My question is does her dad ever get to be in every taco night? And I do have a grammar error.Its question 2.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you Julie! I love your feedback and your questions. I have learned so much about what readers are looking for through the student feedback I have received. One thing that has really stood out is that readers want lots of details. I appreciate you!
      Love,
      Mrs. Apsey

      Like

  2. I can connect to Kippś family. I have a dog 5 months, my dad 40, my mom 35, tyler my brother 18,me 10, my sister 8, my gramma 72, ya its wild but that’s how we like it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Misty,
      Wow! You really can relate to Kip’s family! My grandpa commented on chapter six and said that it was pretty close to how life was in their household 🙂 My Aunt Jill commented too. It is so fun to be writing about them (in a fictional way) and having them read it and give me feedback! Thank you for sharing your connections.
      Love,
      Mrs. Apsey

      Like

  3. By: Payne and Brody
    Mrs. Rubin’s fourth grade class.

    1.What city do they live in? What are the parents’ names? What are the parents’ jobs?

    2. That Kip has 3 siblings. And Kip has a mother that works hard for her four children.

    Like

    1. Hello Payne and Ruby,
      Thank you for your questions and feedback! I think you will find the answers to your questions in the chapters I posted. The city where they live is discussed in the first chapter, and the sixth chapter reveals what Kip’s dad’s job is. I am so glad you are reading my book and giving me feedback!
      Love,
      Mrs. Apsey

      Like

  4. By:Willa
    From:Miss Rubin’s class
    Always let me know if you find grammatical errors:
    What did you details about Kip’s family did you connect with? i’m pretty sure you made a mistake here,but mistakes mean you worked hard!!!

    Kip’s family is introduced in this chapter. How does knowing more about Kip’s family help you understand Kip better?
    well it helped me understand it under stand her more in general.

    P.S. i think you are doing a really great job with the chapters so far!!!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. By Lauryn in Mrs.Rubin’s 4th grade class

    4.Are there any parts where more detail should be added? If so, which parts and what suggestions do you have? I think there should be more details for when it says that their dad is a electrical engineer. I was wondering what project they were going to make for the next day.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello Lauryn,
      I love your inquisitive mind! Hmmm….I will have to do some research about electrical engineers and springs to add detail to that part. Thank you for the suggestion!
      Love,
      Mrs. Apsey

      Like

  6. By Nick
    In Mrs Rubin”s class

    Kip’s family is introduced in this chapter. How does knowing more about Kip’s family help you understand Kip better? I think that I connect with question because I have a brother that is older than me. I think that maybe could you add more details about kip”s family maybe. Sincerely Nick

    Liked by 1 person

  7. By Lillian from Mrs. Rubin’s 4th grade class

    I am confused about Jeff is he a dog or not????? I’m not sure if you can add like a chapter about each sibling’s life at school or what they think about there life? And on question 2 you put “What did you details about Kip’s family did you connect with?”. Please add more details about the Susan and Britt fight. The book is great loving it!!!!!!!!!! Also dose Britt come to school with Susan and Kip? Make something where Kip and Britt have the same class not with Susan and don’t let Susan and Britt make up. Or most likely have a hard way to put drama in the story.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello Lillian,
      No, Jeff is not a dog, but I appreciate you letting me know that confused you. I will take a look at how I can make that more clear. I love the ideas you have for adding drama! You are very creative!
      Love,
      Mrs. Apsey

      Like

  8. By: Gabby
    In Mrs. Rubin 4th grade class

    1. Now that I know more about Kips family it helps me understand more about her by telling us that she is jealous about her brother Joe because he is the perfect child. Also it helps me by telling me that she has more than on sibling I only have 1 sibling a sister Kip has three so I don´t connect that way but I do in other ways like I have one sister and my mom is busy to so in that way I am in relate she just is very late some times because works one hour away. Mrs. Apsey you are seriously my favorite author you wrote 2 books iv´e read and lets just say they were very good I have said it before and will say it again you are a serendipitous gift in our lives thank you for being an awesome author and for willing to take the time to read our responses we think you are awesome it is true!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Gabby,
      You are seriously the best editor! Your feedback warms my heart!! Thank you so much!! YOU are a serendipitous gift!! I love learning about the connections you made to Kip’s family. We all have challenges to face, don’t we? And, challenges are easier when we face them together in a positive way. Thank you for your feedback and for reading my books!!
      Love,
      Mrs. Apsey

      Like

  9. by : Ally and Kendall
    Kendall’s response
    What did you details about Kip’s family did you connect with?
    I can connect with Kip’s family because my family is really loud my mom is always avoided by my little brother and my older brothers are really annoying and they always pick on me and I am 9 and I am the middle kid and that is my connection with Kip’s family.

    Ally’s question
    What questions do you have about Kip’s family?
    I have a question
    1. Why didn’t Kip’s mom change the bumper sticker after the dog died and replace it with another child?
    Kendall’s question
    1. Why didn’t you say how old the mom and dad and grandpa are in the little sticker stick people.
    2. why didn’t you put the grandpa in the stickers.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello Kendall and Ally,
      Thank you for sharing your connections! My family is really loud too, and I am the middle child 🙂

      I used the sticker as a fun way to introduce Kip’s family to readers, and I think it is funny that Kip thinks of Jeff as the dog. Grandpa’s aren’t usually in those types of stickers. I didn’t include how old Kip’s mom and dad are because I wasn’t sure that would be an important detail to readers. I am going to think about that one.

      Thank you for your feedback! You are great editors!
      Love,
      Mrs. Apsey

      Like

  10. By: Ryan , Raegan , Drew, and Ty from Mrs. Rubin’s 4C class.

    How many cousins, aunts, uncles, and grandparents does Kipalee have? We understand Kipalee more because we now know that she is very calm for living with such a CRAZY family. How many family dinners does there father miss in a week? How old is her mom and dad ? Does Kipalee live with her grandma as well? How many tacos can she eat? What culture is she (Mexican, Puerto Rican)? What state does kip live in?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello,
      Wow, you have lots of questions! I am so glad this chapter helped you understand Kip better. When I edit this chapter and add more details, I will keep your questions in mind. I don’t even know all the answers to them 🙂

      Thank you so much for your feedback!
      Love,
      Mrs. Apsey

      Like

  11. Mrs.Rubin´s class: Miah, Bella
    Bella:
    Did you learn any new words in this chapter? If so, what were the words you learned?
    I learned the word chaos it means disorder, disarray, disorganization, confusion, mayhem, bedlam, pandemonium, havoc, turmoil, tumult, commotion, disruption, upheaval, uproar, maelstrom
    Are there any parts where more detail should be added? If so, which parts and what suggestions do you have?
    Miah:
    I think that you did an amazing job with the details about Kip´s family and the details I would like to add are:Why did kip say the dog was ¨long gone¨? What happened to the dog?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello Bella and Miah,
      Thank you so much for reading this chapter and for giving me feedback. I am glad you learned what chaos means. It is a great word!

      I am going to have to think about your dog question. As I edit this chapter, I may add that detail. Thank you for the suggestion!

      Love,
      Mrs. Apsey

      Like

  12. Julie:I think that Knowing Kips family helps describe kip more than in the previous chapters because you have similarity’s with your family and you also have a lot of things in common like the same personality and a lot of the same facial looks .You have a grammar error for question 2.But I do connect with Kips family because I have a crazy family too.what does Kips family look like because I think you could have added a little more description in that part.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hello Julie,
      Thank you for sharing your connections and feedback! I appreciate your suggestion about adding more detail about what Kip’s family looks like. I will keep that in mind as I edit this chapter!
      Love,
      Mrs. Apsey

      Like

  13. Dear Mrs. Apsey,
    I like that you used figurative language in this sentence: “Oh boy, that girl could change her moods like flipping a lightswitch.” I think that you forgot a period on the end of the 13th paragraph after “Just being around him was comforting for Kip”. I was also wondering if you need to capitalize “mexican” in “Kip and Joe chuckled together as they thought about their big, jolly grandpa who loved mexican food.” One more thing: I was wondering if you need to change her’s to hers in the sentence: ” And, it was her’s.”
    Thank you so much, I love the book!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. Hi it’s me Johanna again!!! I can really connect with her and having a brother that in some ways can be perfect. It can be difficult. It’s funny how the grandpa says mildly inappropriate jokes. Can wait to here from you!!!!!
    Sincerely, Johanna

    Like

  15. A question I have for Kip’s family is do the kids ever feel some type of way when their dad can’t spend time with them because of work?

    Liked by 1 person

  16. I really like the idiom that you used “She was the only “lucky” one. Faith Hill’s The Lucky One ran through her mind as she chuckled to herself about HER LUCK IN THE NAME DEPARTMENT.”

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Dear Mrs. Apsey,
    this chapter and introducing Kip’s family helped us understand the surroundings and people Kip learned to grow up with. It helped me observe why Kip acts like she does or react like she does.
    Sincerely, Paige and Lily

    Liked by 1 person

  18. The first paragraph is slightly confusing. The A+B=C is probably where is the confusion is.
    Other than that, I think you did a great job describing Kip’s family.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. In the fourth paragraph it says that Joe IS in the fourth grade, but the rest of the paragraph has everybody in past-tense. Otherwise, we love the details about her family!

    Liked by 1 person

  20. Dear Mrs. Apsey,
    In paragraph 12 in the last sentence, we have spotted a mistake where a period is missing. Other than that great chapter and it does make me feel better learning more about her family!

    Liked by 1 person

  21. Mrs. Apsey,
    We really liked how you introduced Kip’s family in this chapter, but we think it would be helpful to have more background on the characters so we can get to know them better.

    Liked by 1 person

  22. We like how you used the simile “Oh boy, that girl could change her moods like flipping a lightswitch.” Continue to use similes like these. Great job

    Liked by 1 person

  23. We liked the amount of detail in describing the family, but we noticed a grammar mistake if the sentence “And, it was her’s.” Hers is a possessive pronoun and would be better written as ‘hers’.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. Hello Mrs. Apsey,

    The chapter was good and had lots of detail. There was one thing that I noticed in paragraph two, it said The dog is long gone so it works out perfectly. In so many ways. Maybe you could change it and say, The dog is long gone so it works out perfectly in so many ways. I can’t wait to read the next chapter!

    – Tyler

    Liked by 1 person

  25. I thought that the family was very realistic and not plastic like other fictional families. The food was what a typical Michigan family would eat and the grandpa was one of the most realistic characters I’ve ever seen. I look forward to reading more of your work. (P.S. can you make a spin-off series that stars the grandpa)

    Liked by 1 person

  26. We were also confused when we read the part about Jeff and the dog. We eventually got that he was a human, but you might want to make it less confusing. We saw some tense issues too, like make instead of made in paragraph 8 and some others. Otherwise, it was great, and we are looking forward to learning more about Kip and her family!

    Liked by 1 person

  27. On paragraph 11 at the last sentence I think you should say it’s instead of it is because for me it makes reading more comfortable. Have a wonderful day!
    From Jacob

    Liked by 1 person

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