Authors: Karen Lynelle; Wolcott Woolley
Flower Girl World: Starr and the High Seas Wedding Drama
Copyright Â© 2016 Lynelle Woolley
All Rights Reserved.
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Library of Congress Control Number: 2015920686
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Starr Rubio licked her fork and placed it on the side of her dinner plate. Her family was having tamales for dinner, Starr's favorite meal. Each tamale was like a sweet-and-spicy food present wrapped up in a cornhusk shell.
Starr was sure her grandmother, Abuela, made the best tamales in all of San Antonio, Texas. But she only made them on special nights. That meant something important was happening at the Rubio's house.
What could it be?
Starr wondered. She looked around the table. It seemed like a regular evening. Her twin brothers, Ricky and Randy, were arguing. Her dad was rubbing his belly, and her mother and grandmother were complaining about the price of avocados.
“Starr, please help me clear the table,” her mother said. “After the kitchen is cleaned, Abuela wants to share some big news. It involves all of us.”
Starr's grandmother had just returned from a cruise. For five days, she had sailed around Mexico on a huge ocean liner. Starr knew that Abuela loved taking cruises, because this trip was her third one this year.
I wish I could go on a cruise
, Starr thought.
Taking a cruise was like vacationing in a fancy floating hotel, with all-you-can-eat buffets, day-trips into port cities, and, best of all, big shows every night. Starr loved everything about the theater: singing, dancing, acting, and especially being in the spotlight.
Maybe one day I'll be the star of a cruise ship show
Starr got goose bumps as she imagined herself on a stage, taking a bow, and blowing kisses to her audience. For a moment she got so lost in the dream, she forgot about the dirty plates on the table.
When the dishes were finally back in the cabinets, the family gathered in the living room.
, as you know, I love cruises,” Abuela said with her Spanish accent.
“That's for sure!” said Starr.
“Surprise!” Abuela cheered. “I'm taking the whole family on a cruise around Mexico!”
“Hooray!” Starr and her brothers leaped into a celebration dance.
“Mama,” Starr's mother said to Abuela, “tell them why we're going on a cruise.”
Starr's parents glanced at each other with knowing smiles.
“Because I'm in love!” Abuela announced.
Starr gasped. Randy squealed. Ricky looked confused.
“Aren't you too old to fall in love?” Ricky asked.
Starr's mom shook her head. “You're never too old to fall in love.”
“His name is Walter,” said Abuela. “We met in a ballroom dance class during my first cruise. We've been dancing together ever since.”
Abuela put her hands on her heart and sighed. “And that's not all. We're getting married!”
“What?” Starr's jaw dropped.
“We want our families to meet before we set a wedding date. Walter will be on the ship too, along with his daughter and granddaughter.”
Starr was speechless. This was a lot of news to absorb at once.
Abuela pulled Starr aside for a private talk. “I know you'll like Walter. You can call him Grandpa Walt.”
Both of Starr's grandfathers had passed away before she was born. This would be the
first time she would call someone Grandpa.
“Starr, I have something very important to ask,” Abuela went on. She reached into her tote bag and pulled out a large pink flower made of tissue paper.
Starr's eyes widened. “It's so pretty!”
“I made this for you during my cruise.” Abuela smiled. “On my wedding day, will you be a flower girl? You and Walter's granddaughter can walk down the aisle together.”
Starr loved being a flower girl. She had been in another wedding, along with two other flower girls, Rosie and Iris. The three of them lived in different cities, but their friendship kept growing through phone calls, video chatting, and a special club called Flower Girl World. Anyone could be a member, as long as that person loved everything about being a flower girl.
Now, Starr had the chance to be in Abuela's wedding and welcome a new friend into Flower Girl World.
” Starr burst out. “I'd love to be your flower girl!”