Ralfie and Jemima

Ralfie and Jemima

Monday, 19 December 2011

Joy to the World

Today is the last Sunday before Christmas. It is a very special day. The citizens of Riverside are opening their Christmas market. Everybody is looking forward to this event. There will be market stalls with food and gifts. Some villagers are going to play instruments.

 Have a look at this gorgeous market stall. It belongs to James Periwinkle. Tonight he will be selling freshly baked bread and pastries from the Water Mill Bakery. There are also two types of home made jam, cinnamon buns and little bags of freshly baked Christmas cookies. Mr. Periwinkle is especially proud of his gingerbread house.

This is Mr. Schaefer's stall. As owner of the country market, he will be selling an assortment of toys. Look at that cute sleeping mouse! And the yellow pony! And the green dragon that is sticking out its tongue! Just like Mr. Periwinkle, Lance Schaefer has already set everything up. 
Where are they now? Maybe they have gone home to fetch warmer clothes? Or maybe they are having a cup of hot cocoa at the Country Market?

 When it gets dark, Mr. Periwinkle's gingerbread house is illuminated by the full moon. 

 Finally, Lance Schaefer steps behind his stall.

James is back now, too. 

Look at this! It's Julie Perwinkle and baby Jemima on a sleigh!  Julie is pulling her daughter through the snow.

Oh dear! Little Jemima forgot to hold on tight and has fallen into the snow.

"Are you hurt, Jemima?" Asks Mrs. Periwinkle. 

"No. Jemima fine, Mommy!" says the little rabbit girl. "I'm so glad, my munchkin! I'll put you back onto the sleigh. Hold on this time, okay?" 

"Yes, Mommy!" says Jemima. She can't wait to continue sleighing. 

"Faster, Mommy!" She orders, while her mother pulls her through the snow.

When Mrs. Perwinkle is sure that Jemima is sitting on the sleigh safely, she starts walking faster. The snow is crunching underneath her feet.

Then, she sees her husband James and goes to greet him. 

The next person to arrive is little Ralfie Hazelnut. 

 He has decided to test the new skis he was given on St. Nicholas' Day.

The skis are great and Ralfie arrives in front of Mr. Schaefer's stall in no time. "Hello Mr. Schaefer," he says. "Good evening, Ralfie!" "The dragon is so cool, Mr. Schaefer! Do you think Santa would get it for me?" "If you haven't asked for anything yet, there is no reason why he shouldn't," answers Mr. Schaefer. "Well, I did ask for a toy car, a picture book, a jump rope, a ball and several other things... But maybe I could write him another letter and tell him that I would really just want the dragon?" "I suppose so, Ralfie! It's certainly worth a try." "Thanks, Mr. Schaefer. I'll write him as soon as I get home tonight." 

Julie and Jemima have stopped sleighing and playing around in the snow and are taking a moment to catch their breaths.

More people have arrived at the market. Here are Angeli and Maxino. 

Just like Ralfie they head directly for the toy stall. 

Jemima sees Angeli and runs to greet her. "Hello Jemima!" says Angeli.

Ralfie starts skiing around the market square. Jemima and the two kittens are now gloating at the toys.

 She spots the loveliest stuffed dog she has ever seen.

 "Mommy! I want the doggy for Christmas! Please!" "I will ask Santa Claus if he can get it for you, alright?" "Thank you, Mommy!" says Jemima and beams with joy. 

Gradually, more and more people arrive. 

They start to gather around Mr. Babblebrook.

He is going to play some carols on his trumpet. "Mr. Babblebrook, may we sing while you play?" asks Angeli. "Of course, Angeli, that would be fun! You may all join in, if you like!"

"I thought we could start with Joy to the World", says Troy Babblebrook and everybody cheers. 

Thursday, 27 October 2011

Come In For A Bite!

Teresa Babblebrook has prepared a special surprise for her youngest children. Since they love to celebrate Halloween, she has made a Halloween pudding and bought some candy. She has also made a Halloween mobile by hanging a pumpkin paper garland and a paper ghost from a string above the dining table. 

All is ready and she is waiting for Tim and Tegan to come back from school. 

 Here they come. "Mom, what's this??" The siblings ask with astounded looks on their faces. 

"Surprise!! I thought we could have a little Halloween party this afternoon, since tomorrow you are going to go trick-or-treating!"

 "MOM!" exclaims Tim, "You are AWSOME!"

As Tim and Tegan sit down at the table, their mother turns on the light in the living room and wakes up Toby who has been taking a nap in the bedroom. 

"Mrs. Periwinkle and Jemima will be joining us, too. I hope that's alright with you, children." 

"That's fine with me," replies Tim. "Jemima is coooool!" 
Tegan agrees.

 Mrs. Babblebrook puts Toby into the baby chair. Tegan leans toward him and places her party hat on his head. "There you go, Toby. Why don't you wear the pumpkin hat?" "Thanks, Tegan!" Toby says excitedly and stares at the wonderful Halloween pudding his mother has made. 

Soon, there is a knock on the door and Teresa Babblebrook gets up to welcome Julie and Jemima. Julie is wearing an orange pumpkin mask and little Jemima is pretending to be a ghost.

"Hello Jemima!" says Tegan. "How are you?" "I am not Jemima," responds Jemima matter-of-factly. "I am a ghost. I have eaten Jemima. Mmm... She tasted very good, you know!!" 

"Oh, okay. Well would you like to sit down with us, ghost, and have some pudding and sweets?" "Yes please!" answers the ghost.

All are seated and enjoying the party. Julie and Teresa are drinking coffee. Tim is already sucking on his second lollipop.

"What a great way to spend the afternoon", everyone is thinking. Toby is looking at Jemima eat and wondering how such a little person can eat so much sweets and pudding. 

Soon everybody's sweet-tooth is satiated and all has been eaten but one piece of blue candy. Tim has invited Jemima to sit on his lap. He has given her his party hat. "Mother, look!" Tegan giggles, "Now she is a ghost wearing a ghost hat."

Friday, 23 September 2011

A Letter from Plumcake

It's Saturday afternoon and the Periwinkles are enjoying their weekend. 

 James is gardening and little Jemima is helping him.

Quackie is watching.

James is watering a plant, as Julie steps onto the porch. 

She is holding a letter in her hand. "James! Jemima! We have just received a letter from Plumcake! Let's read it all together!"

James carries the plant onto the porch. Jemima runs after him. "Wait for me, Daddy!"

"Do you want me to help you?" asks Julie, as her daughter tries to climb onto the porch. "No, Mommy. Jemima a big girl!"

Now they are all sitting on the porch, eager to hear their relatives' news. James starts to read the letter out loud:

Dear James, Julie and little Jemima,

How are you? Does little Jemima like your new home? 

We are very happy to hear that your new job at the Water Mill Bakery became 
successful! A few days ago, a stranger came to Plumcake and told us what 
a lovely bakery there is in Riverside!
She told us, it had been Hello Kitty week. She had tasted a 
Kitty muffin and an apple cake and found them amazing! Do you know this 
stranger? Unfortunately we forgot her name...

So, congratulations!

We look forward to hearing from you soon!

Zelda, Zachary, and Zara

"Do you think they are referring to Teresa, James?" Julie asks her husband. "I know that she sometimes goes to Plumcake to visit her mother! It must have been her. She had a Hello Kitty muffin, and a piece of apple cake, too!" "It must have been her then!" replies James. 
"Daddy, they don't tell Quackie hello. Why??" Jemima asks with an upset look on her face. "I'm sure they didn't mean to be rude, my dear," her father says. "Are you sure, they have already met Quackie?" Jemima tries to remember the last time she met her relatives and shakes her head in response.

"Let's answer them right away!" says Julie. James has an idea, too...

Julie goes inside and takes out her prettiest Cath Kidston stationery.  

Hmm... which design should she choose?

She decides to use the sheet that has birds and flowers on it.

Finally, she starts to write the date on the upper right of the page.
But what has James been up to? 

Papa Periwinkle has brought his easel into the garden and a very large canvas. 

 He couldn't reach the top of the canvas, so he went into the house to get a stool. Now he is ready to start. "What are you doing, Daddy?" Jemima wants to know. "I am making a present for Zelda, Zachary and Zara."

Jemima watches her Daddy intently, as he starts to sketch the outlines of something onto the big white canvas...

Dear reader! If you would like to know what Julie Periwinkle wrote in her letter and see how James Periwinkle's present turned out, please visit Kate Dante's blog about "Life in Plumcake"!