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Thursday, September 22, 2011

Miracle on Main Street

Today I read what I find to be the saddest story in The SOS File: Miracle on Main Street, told by a fictional girl named Joy. The beginning is so tragic that I dreaded having the children hear it. Their eyes widened in horror as I read Joy's words about her first day of life, spent in a dumpster outside a motel. I could feel them holding their collective breaths as I read about the delivery driver who thought he heard a kitten mewing in that dumpster - and got out of his truck to rescue it, only to find the baby. I cried, of course, as I read it aloud.

The story is uplifting after that. Joy keeps a scrapbook of her life history, and she has the newspaper clipping of the man standing by the dumpster. When her curiosity leads her to the newspaper office to see if the embroidery on his jumpsuit reveals his name, she begins a quest to find him, the man who saved her life. Her parents support her, holding her hand when she needs it, letting her ask the questions when they come to company owners. Ultimately, they pull up to his house (he's now retired), and the two embrace as if they had known each other all their lives - which for Joy, at least, is true.

The children offered all sorts of reasons why they thought someone would leave a baby in a dumpster. Before we moved on to "Shark Attack", one sweet girl offered this: "I cried, too."


  1. This was one of my favorite stories in the book, because Joy was certain of what she needed to do, and took charge of the discovery of her "angel". So uplifting! In other news, I got to watch David carve a pumpkin this evening at the Northwoods Children's Book Conference!

  2. I wonder if the children will dream of that opening scene...if they'll go home and discuss it with their parents...or if they are so enveloped by the rest of Joy's story that the dumpster beginning can be let go. Love the photo of the wee, sweet baby, btw.

  3. What a great role model you were...showing your students that it's okay to cry. I bet that had a strong (positive) impact on the kids, just like the book.

  4. So far, Brattcat, they seem to simply enjoy the satisfaction of Joy's discovery. We'll see what the next week brings. The baby, of course, is me.

    I would love to see that jack-o-lantern, Joyce and David. I hope the conference was a success.