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Prize Essay Competition.

"HOW I SPENT WY EASTER HOLIDAYS, 1905." The following essay by "jAUio Sloper" (DouGtAS Clement, Carew School) received honourable mention:—I spent my holidays helping 1 mother to do up the Vegetable and flower garden, and enjoyed myself very much. We planted a large number of smitH fruit bushes, consisting of twenty red currents, twenty-three gooseberries, fifteen black currants, and six white currants. We then dag up all the vasant ground roughly, ready foe tha winter frosts. Then we trimmed up all the nut trees, and cut away the suckers, gathered up all the tallen leaves to make manure for next year, We always give our garden a good doing up this time of the year, as it mwkes it so much easier m the spring. After finishing the vegetable garden we went to the flowers. Thi3 part of the garden is by far the most interesting. You will understand that this is so when I tell you that we have about six hundred different kinds of gladiolas, some of them are just lovely. Mr Young, the Curator of the Ashburton Domain, paid ua a visit this season, and thought them very good, and said we ought to make somw of them grow very good and show them. Mother says we boys and girla may show them if we wish, so we are going to work with this objeot m view. What makes these flowers so interesting to me is that mother has raised them all from seed. They commence flowering m January, and continue untill the frost stops them. It is four years last Spring since mother's second batch of seed was sown. A lot of them flowered at three years, but such a lot of strangers showed themselves this year, still leaving a great many to surprise us next season. We have hundreds of gladiola seeds sown last spring, to start on their journey next year. It is very curious to watch what they will turn out like when we know what sort of flower the seed was saved from. There are lots of lovely spring flowers ia our garden and others which come out later. But I love these beautiful gladiolas best of all. You cannot imagine one little bit what they are like. Nearly every one that has seen them, seems to like the cream ones best. We are giving suoh a lot of people a collection of the bulbs this Autumn to get rid of them, as they are increasing rapidly. Mother is going to send a lot of them down to the Ashburton Domain. I dare say a lot of my readers would think this a very dull way of spending their holidays. They would not think so were they acquainted with our garden. We have given such a lot of bunches of these flowers away, bunches as much as you could carry. They have gone to Christchurch, and right down to Invercargill. We used to decorate the school for chuich service on Sunday, and teacher used to get us to draw some'of the good blooms on our slate on Monday.

The following by •• Ich Dien " (William Bell, Wills Street West) also received honourable mention :— I think I spent a happier Easter this year than any other I can remember. We decided to spend it m Christchurch. So, on (the) Thursday, the 20th of April, we found ourselves m the cathedral city. After having an enjoyable tea and a look at some of the shops, we retired to bed. Firstly, on Good Friday morning, we went to the Gardens and spent a short time admiring the beauties of the Avon. Secondly, we rushed off to catch a tram to the Wainoni gardens. A long winding path to the gardens led us past a doctor's residence and a consumptive's camp, all being composed of paper huts. We also had glimpses of people playing tannia and a lake where some boys wore " punting " about m a boat where we wished to be. After weighing ourselves we looked through a vinery. Some of us looked longingly at the grapes and one of us at the maiden-hair ferns, while others wanted to have a lily. In the front there was a fernery, a fountain, a fish pond, and some well kept gardens. Punting about m the boat formed our next attraction. As we hurried back along the winding track we said " good-bye, good-bye to everything/ hoping: to visit Wainoni again. The next morning being wet, we visited tho museum, but the only new things that we saw were the animals from the Antarctic In the afternoon about 5 o'clock we reached the station m time for the reception of the good old man—General Booth. Sunday morning greeted us with tke smiling sun as we pulled up the blinds. On Sunday we attended three services. First, went to Knox Church, then went to hear General Booth m the afternoon and evening m the Canterbury Hall which is a vory fine building. On Easter Monday morning we surveyed the Prohibition procession, and then, took the train, via Lyttelton, for Governor's Bay. When we had dinner we boarded the " s.s. Canterbury " and iv about half an hour reached the bay. After some stiff climbing we returned to the beach where we picked up many pretty stones and shells. . Lifting up the large stones we were surprised to see hundreds of crabs. We rßturned m the " s.s Purau," arriving m Lyttelton m time to see our train steam away without us. However, we soon got another. We jumped into the motor-bus when we arrived m Christchurch and soon reached the Square and soon home for tea and off again to secure seats for General i booth's last meeting. As the next day was inclined io be wet we stayed inside m the morning. In the afternoon three o us went to the Port Hills, between the showers. It took us a while to climb the hills but we did it at last. As we looked down we could see Christchurch m the distance. When we arrived down at the foot of the hill, we had [a seesaw till the tram came. The next Day being dry and warm we went to Sumner. We had dinner on the sand and went to the " bafehs." Climbing the cave rock; from whioh we could see the houses with their winding paths was a scene to be remembered. The tram ride was the most enjoyable part of it as we did not know that part of the country. On Thursday we visited the Opawa Fish Gardens. It was rather late m the year to see them at their best, but they were very pretty being ornamented with ponds m which water lilies grew m profusion. We amused ourselves ou swings and sec-saws etc. When we arrived home that evening we were shown some Queensland curios. Friday was spent m town. We looked through the warehouses and the Cathedral and saw the monument of Bishop Harper. The next day we again went to the Wainoni Gardens. The chief attractions were:—l, punting about m the boat; 2, swinging; 3, riding around on a merry-go-round etc. We were sorry to leave Wainoni when the time came. On Sunday afternoon we went for the last time to the Gardens and saw a small kauri tree, Monday morning was spent m packing up for home. After doing some shopping wo boarded the express and arrived m Ashburton pleased to "be home aga'n. The following days passed pleasantly and quickly and we hope to settle I down at school again on Monday,

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Prize Essay Competition., Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXII, Issue 6580, 26 May 1905

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Prize Essay Competition. Ashburton Guardian, Volume XXII, Issue 6580, 26 May 1905

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