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said Miss Watson, “ that you will all enjoy your

, trip to Sandbay very much. But I think people should earn their holiday before they have it, or even waste much time beforehand in planning how to spend it. We shall get no lessons at allthis morning if we are to be hindered like this, and the consequence will be, Frank, that as so often is the case, you will spend your playtime in going over them again.

“Suppose we all settle down steadily,” suggested sensible Celia, “and put the thoughts of the sea out of our minds till we have done. Look, Miss Watson, it only wants a quarter to one, and we have finished all but our copies ! ”

“ There's the “vexation' to be got through first, by me at any rate,” said Frank, with a rueful air. “I wish the man who invented it had all the three times' from one to twelve printed on him with a cat-o'-nine tails, every time a fellow is forced to go through it!”

When you are a rich old merchant in the City, Frank,“ replied Miss Watson, smiling,” you will find the vexation’ a pleasure, as you add up

" your pounds and shillings, or calculate the value of your cargoes ! ”

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“I wonder if Sir Walter Raleigh bothered his head with all this rubbish, growled Frank. 'I daresay he counted up his ingots on his fingers.

Such a leader as he was never wasted his time and trouble on the bothering old multiplication tables, I know.”

“ Raleigh was a scholar and a poet too, Frank,” replied Miss Watson;“you could hardly have chosen a worse example of your theory. He was an Oriel College man, and wrote a history of the world during his captivity in the Tower. He employed his imprisonment better than you have done, you see!”

“I have finished my copy, Miss Watson,” said Celia, “may I go now, please? I have

I nothing more to do until the afternoon.

“Yes, Celia; but, Florry, how carelessly you have written yours! I am afraid the thoughts of going to the sea have bewildered your little head so, that your fingers have travelled along without any guidance, like runaway horses with the coachman fast asleep!"

Florry blushed and hung her head over the illwritten book, and was silent, for she knew that she had been thinking more of the pleasure be

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fore her, and musing where her wooden spade could be, than of her lessons; I am afraid that morning set a mark of“Careless!” in both Frank's and her score. However, school time ended at last, and off with a shout went Frank to hear all about the plans from Celia, for he had no doubt she had been talking the matter over with Mamma. Miss Watson was putting on her bonnet and mantle in order to return home for the usual weekly half holiday, when Mrs. Spenser entered the room.

“I find, Miss Watson,” said she, smiling, “that Frank's long ears have managed to catch what Mr. Spenser and I have been arranging for the summer holidays. The house is so very dirty and worn now, after our long residence in it, that we find it will be best to set about a thorough course of paint, paper, and whitewash, so that I have resolved to give the children a month at Sandbay during these holidays, which will do them all a great deal of good, I think."

“I hope it will, indeed,” replied Miss Watson; “and I am sure you will find it more agreeable to leave the house in possession of the work



men; all painting and papering is so pleasant to endure.”

Yes, indeed,” said Mrs. Spenser, “ I have a great horror of the whole operation; and, besides, Mr. Spenser thinks it will be more thoroughly done, if everything is packed away, and we are all out of the house. It will be very pleasant to be away from the heat of town, and with plenty of sea breezes to freshen up the children. Celia, I think, is looking rather delicate."

“ A little sea wind, and a few rambles on the shore, will soon bring back her rosy cheeks,” replied Miss Watson, shaking hands with Mrs. Spenser, as she took her leave. “ I hope you will all be very much the better for the change.”

For the rest of the next week—the last but one before the holidays began—Binswood Villa was a scene of endless bustle and confusion. The children enjoyed it all immensely, and rejoiced secretly at the little interruptions to the usual routine of their daily lessons, which were now taken in “pic-nic fashion,” as Celia declared. For after the dining-room was cleared of its furniture, the schoolroom was obliged to

be used for luncheon and dinner. And at last, joy of joys, the schoolroom itself had to be partially given up, and the weather being very warm and dry, the last few days' school was held in the arbour in the garden. The children enjoyed the remove greatly; but Frank declared that it was a sore trial to Miss Watson, for she had earwigs up her sleeve and snails on her gown!

“I am too fond of a garden, Frank, to mind even these mishaps," said Miss Watson, laughing; “and as they have not yet fallen to my share, I won't fear them beforehand. I think all the garden inhabitants recognise you for their lawful prey, for I can see a little money-spinner spider making a tour of your collar now!”

Then there was all the packing to be done. Mamma very wisely got over her share of the business during the quiet hours when the young folks were at school, and, therefore, managed to get everything stowed away in tolerable order. And she found out the wisdom of her plan soon enough, for the confusion and trouble that reigned during the three days' holiday before they left, nearly drove poor Nurse out of her

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