"Poor old Jo! she came in looking as if bears were after her," said Beth, as she cuddled her sister's feet with a motherly air.
"Aunt March is a regular samphire, is she not?" observed Amy, tasting her mixture critically.
"She means vampire, not sea-weed; but it don't matter; it's too warm to be particular about one's parts of speech," murmured Jo.
"What shall you do all your vacation?" asked Amy, changing the subject, with tact.
"I shall lie abed late, and do nothing," replied Meg, from the depths of the rocking-chair. " I've been routed up early all winter, and had to spend my days working for other people; so now I'm going to rest and revel to my heart's content."
"Hum!" said Jo; "that dozy way wouldn't suit me. I've laid in a heap of books, and I'm going to improve my shining hours reading on my perch in the old apple-tree, when I'm not having l—"
"Don't say 'larks!'" implored Amy, as a return snub for the "samphire" correction.
"I'll say 'nightingales,' then, with Laurie; that's proper and appropriate, since he's a warbler."
"Don't let us do any lessons, Beth, for a while, but play all the time, and rest, as the girls mean to," proposed Amy.
"Well, I will, if mother don't mind. I want to learn some new songs, and my children need fixing up for the summer; they are dreadfully out of order, and really suffering for clothes."
"May we, mother?" asked Meg, turning to Mrs.