Ralfie and Jemima

Ralfie and Jemima

Monday, 27 November 2017

Rabbit Island

🐠 ⛱ 🐇 🚣 🐠

Have you ever wondered where the Sylvanians of Riverside go to have fun and relax? Where they can do activities with their kids? Or where they catch fresh air on the weekend? 

I know Riversiders are... let's say "notorious" for their brunches in and around Water Mill Bakery. But that is not the only spot my Sylvanians like to go to. Let me show you...

Remember little Ferdinand McMousetail and his father Percival? 

Ferdinand and his watchduck are accompanying daddy Percival to work. They got the duck at the Adopt-a-Duck during this year's Easter Brunch and couldn't be happier about their new family member. He is a very patient, peaceful and kind pet, although for some reason Ferdy decided to name him Dagger.

First of all, they say good morning to Parrot. I guess you could call him a "watchmouse", as he also keeps an eye on everything, just like Dagger the duck.

After Daddy has placed the bottles of fizz in the kitchen and has put the two green kettles to boil, Ferdy and Dagger and Parrot settle down on a blanket in front of the stove for their morning chat and a warm cup of cocoa. 

Daddy is already busy as a bee. The dessert table needs to be set, cups have to be polished and arranged next to the pots of coffee and tea. 

"Does Percival McMousetail own a café?" you might ask. The answer is no. Percy's workplace is much more than a café.

Maybe this will serve as a hint: After finishing his cocoa, Ferdy puts a vintage three-cornered hat on top of Dagger's little head. This is Daggers costume (or should I say uniform?) for the day. 

Meanwhile, Daddy is outside arranging chairs, while two brown rabbits observe him.

Okay, okay, I'll tell you already what this place really is, no need to get huffy. 

Percival is the keeper of an old pirate castle and its adjoining terrain, which is called Rabbit Island

Is that cool or what?? To be honest with you, there isn't much left of the castle besides a small grey ruin, a palmtree and a pier...

Doesn't it look awesome, though? There is a boat tied to the pier. Visitors can rent it for trips around the lake. Also, there is a huge pirate's chest next to the palm tree. I wonder what's inside?

I almost forgot something! There is also William the goat who watches over the shore and the centuries old cannon! It's never been fired, but it looks to me like it's loaded and who knows what kind of things went on when the pirates still lived here!

It's still very early in the morning, so the lakeside is filled with grey geese enjoying the calm.

Little Ferdy has climbed into the boat to say hi to Mouse, the parrot. He is called that way, because for a parrot he is rather shy and taciturn. 

Ferdinand: "Good morning, Mouse!"

Mouse: "... ..."

Finally I can show it to you, the tiny piece of land that seems to have given the lake, castle and surroundings its name: Rabbit Island. 

I am pretty sure what you are thinking: "Oh, it's called Rabbit Island because the island is in the shape of a rabbit head."  

Nope. You are wrong. Think again.

"Oh, now I know," I can hear you say, "It's called that because there are rabbits living on it!"

Uh-uh, wrong again.

Rabbit Island is called Rabbit Island because it once belonged to The Dread Pirate Rabbit. He passed away centuries ago, but Riversiders love their cultural heritage, so they have never taken down his Jolly Roger -  the black flag waving over the ruin - and Rabbit Island has turned into a well visited holiday destination.

Riversiders as well as Sylvanians from all over the country come to Rabbit Island to have their picture taken wearing Dread Pirate Rabbit's old hat or to check out the red sticks of dynamite which he used to threaten his opponents with.

As for now, all is peaceful and there are neither pirates nor visitors that could stir up any trouble on the island. William is having his breakfast next to the large rocks...

...and the geese are still enjoying the time of day when the lakeside belongs to them. 

On the opposite side of the lake a couple of storks are looking for breakfast and a tortoise is sitting on one of the rocks trying to catch a ray of sun. It's not really sunny today and it's very cold, since it's already November, but the animals are all glad that there is some light and the air smells like it will be a day without rain.

On this side of the lake, apart from tables and chairs for the visitors, there is a sand pit for the children to play in. 

Tortoise is looking at it, wondering who will be building sand castles today.

I've heard a rumour that the Periwinkles are planning to go to Rabbit Island. Let's come back when they have arrived...

🐰 🐰 🐰

Oh, wow. First of all: THE PERIWINKLES HAVE GOT A CAR !!!  And second: Looks like there is already a lot going on.

Say hello to Jemima and Quackie. Today, Jemima is accompanied by her good friend May. The two of them can't wait to play together.

Guess who the green car belongs to. 

It's the Babblebrooks' car! Yes, they have one now too!! 

Let's go around the island and wish everyone a good day.

Mrs and Mrs Tarte are standing next to the dessert table. Madeleine is holding baby Adèle who doesn't seem fully awake yet.

"Didn't I say there would still be enough cake for everyone at this time of day?" Evangeline says as little Edmond forges a bond with the strawberry éclair.

The pier is crowded with Babblebrook children. Tim, Tegan and little Toby are just as curious as we are and have opened the treasure chest. 

There really is a treasure inside!  The chest is filled with Dread Pirate Rabbit's shiny gold legacy...

Teresa and Troy Babblebrook are much more curious about the pastries and are enjoying them with juice and tea.

Pickles and Fudge are here too, obviously. Fudge never misses any gathering where he can get something to eat or drink...

Oh look! The Hogwarts and their bacon rolls - I mean babies - are taking a walk along the shore. Rona and Ralfie have come to collect some shiny stones.

On the opposite side of the lake, Sabrina is playing ball with her pet ducks which she also got at the Adopt-a-Duck. Her baby sister Valentina Zoraida is watching them from her pram. 

Isn't it funny that, although Valentina Zoraida is probably Riverside's tiniest baby, she has one of the longest names?

Right next to the Canguros, the Sylversons are settling down for a picnic. Freya is already sitting on the blanket munching on a peach. Misty wants her dad to give her a banana.

And still there are more Sylvanians arriving. Here are the Woodchucks.

And the Peachblossoms are on their way too.

Here is a view from above.

And here of the opposite shore.

Some time later the Periwinkles have settled down next to the sand pit. Ralfie sees Jemima and comes over to greet her. 

Jemima is skeptical about the sand. She has touched it and thinks it feels strange. "Feels icky, Daddy," she complains to her father, who tells her to give it another try, she might change her mind.

Quackie seems to like the sand. A lot. So Jemima grabs one of her toys and climbs in. 

"Hello Mr. Periwinkle," says Ralfie.

Soon, the three friends are happily playing in the sand.

Julie Periwinkle is watching them from a table. She is having tea and a cupcake. The other one is for James.

Fudge has ordered a strawberry tarte and is watching Pickles make acquaintance with two ducklings.

At first they eye him suspiciously, especially his horns and his long tail.

But after a while they seem to get along rather well.

Look at that, the Grigios are here too! Mother Chiara waves from the pier as Angeli and Maxino climb into the boat and start to row.

Hey, you guys forgot to loosen the rope! 

Looks like they heard me. Maxino is rowing and they have almost reached the island.

The rabbits are cowering together nervously. What do those children want??

Ever so gently Angeli and Maxino pick up the rabbits and place them inside the boat to bring them back to the pier. It turns out, Percival told them the rabbits haven't been ahore for three weeks, so they offered to go get them. 

How did the rabbits even get to the island? Did someone take them there? Did they swim on the back of a duck? Or by themselves? Did they fly...?? 

I guess we'll never know, at least so far nobody has told me.



Please tell me what you think of Rabbit Island and if you have any theories on how the rabbits got there three weeks ago.  

Or anything else you would like to share!! 😉

Have a wonderful week!!!

Wednesday, 15 November 2017

The Three Jemimas

🐥 🐥 🐥

It was just another weekday at the Periwinkle household,

...but it didn't feel like a normal day to Jemima. Something was different. For one thing Mommy was baking donuts. Mommy never baked donuts on a weekday.

Also, she had placed cups and saucers on the living room table and a pot full of hot coffee. The kittens Molly and Pip were awoken by the smell.

Jemima was in her room. It was a mess. Mommy had asked her to tidy it up this morning, but she didn't like tidying up. Neither did Quackie, who was pretending to be asleep on the little blue chair. Reluctantly, Jemima started to pick up her toys. 

In the kitchen Julie had just taken out the fresh baked donuts from the oven. They looked delicious.

She started to prepare the icing.

Pip and Molly had tossed the cups onto the carpet, just in case they contained any sweet, delicious milk... Unfortunately, they didn't.

Back in Jemima's bedroom the little rabbit had just finished tidying up. Quackie was still pretending to sleep, as Jemima told her pink My Little Pony to behave. "Be a goood pwincess today... Stay inside da stable. My auntie is coming for a visit an' Mommy want evewyting to be clean an' tidy."

So far, the day wasn't getting any better for Jemima, as Julie decided to clean Jemima's ears and face with a sponge. Quackie was hiding inside the sleeve of Jemima's yellow dress; she did not like to be washed either.

Finally, everyone was ready. Julie and Jemima had just come down the stairs when there was a knock on the front door. Julie opened it.

Jemima couldn't believe her eyes. The rabbit that came in and was supposed to be her aunty looked just like her Mommy! 

"Oh Jemima! How you've grown since you and your parents moved to Riverside! It's so good to see you, love!" 

Then, as her auntie hugged and kissed her Mommy, two more guests hopped over the threshold. The cats walked off, because they felt annoyed by so many visitors. Jemima forgot to close her mouth. And Quackie fainted, because there were suddenly three Jemimas. 

Jemima tugged on her mother's dress questioningly. "Mommy?"

"Darling, these are your two cousins, Jillie and Billie. They are twins."

Jemima didn't understand why the twins didn't look like each other and instead looked like her. Just a little smaller. It was spooky.

After a while, the moms settled down on the sofas and had coffee and donuts.

"Thanks for the lovely gifts, Janey," Julie said to her sister. She was referring to the basket next to her filled with stinky cheese for James, daisies for her and a bar of chocolate for Jemima.

The children were having their snack in the kitchen. Even though they were allowed to have chocolate bars and milk, there was a very strange atmosphere. 

Jemima was staring at the girls who were doing everything in a synchronized manner. They even chewed and swallowed at the same time. Quackie was looking at them in a way that made Jemima jealous and lose her appetite. Jemima didn't even taste her chocolate. Instead, she took careful little sips from her cup of milk.

Before she could come up with any smart ideas, the twins had finished their chocolate and were huddled underneath the table conspiring. Jemima couldn't make out any words, she just heard them whisper to one another. In the meantime, Quackie had discovered Jemima's chocolate and decided to help herself to it. No one noticed her take a huge bite.

All of a sudden, the girls raced out of the kitchen. Jemima watched them suspiciously. What could they be up to?

As they passed by Julie, she said, "It looks like the children have decided to go and play." 

"Have fun, you three!" aunt Janey shouted after them. Jemima didn't say a word as she pursued her cousins up the stairs. 

What could they be up to??

When she arrived at the top of the staircase the girls had disappeared. Oh no, Jemima thought. So she had two evil doppelganger cousins AND they could do magic. Okay, stay calm, she told herself.

But Jillie and Billie weren't evil nor could they do magic. They were simply very, very good at playing hide-and-seek. Can you spot them?

The two of them came out of their hiding places in no time and were again busy with the whispering. Jemima was getting more and more annoyed.

They crossed the oriental carpet and pattered into Jemima's room faster than you can say bunny rabbit.

Now Jemima was really mad. They should have asked her for permission to enter her room... She looked at Molly and Pip who were relaxing inside their cat bed and said, "Be good watchkitties an' go get 'em!"

But Molly and Pip weren't interested in chasing after anyone at that moment.

Jemima entered her bedroom and was just about to give them such a telling-off, when she heard Jillie, who was staring at the My Little Ponies, squeak, "Look, she has pooonies! Sooo beautiful!" 
And then Billie, turning her head in awe, whispered, "...the BEST room in the world!!"

This changed Jemima's mind about her cousins. They didn't seem like bad rabbits at all. They were admiring her room and they had complimented her ponies. So she decided to show them everything. She started with the magical night light on her crib. "Oooooh!" they said.

Then, she helped Jillie climb onto her rocking horse.

And when it was Billie's turn and she won first prize at the "super duper rocking horse race", Jillie, Jemima and Hans the bear all clapped in unison.

After that, Jemima showed them her My Little Pony collection.

Their ponies made a trip to Ponyland, to win back the princess' throne from the evil teddy.

The next game the children played was "Red Riding Hood visits her grandmother in the woods with a basket full of marzipan ponies". 

Billie, who was seated on Jemima's rocking chair, was the grandmother.


After so many games the little rabbits couldn't find the strength to get back up from the carpet, so Jemima fetched the cushion and blanket from her cot and tucked them in.

As her cousins were relaxing, Jemima pretended to read to them from her picture book, just like a mother would. 

This made her become sleepy too.

Julie and Janey had decided to check on the children. It was practically a miracle that Quackie (who had finished the entire chocolate bar) was able to accompany them up the stairs. 

What the sisters saw in Jemima's bedroom made them very happy. Their girls had all laid down together for a nap.

When Quackie saw that Jemima was friends with the Jemima-clones, she fainted. 

"What's wrong with Quackie?" Janey asked. 
"Maybe too much chocolate," Julie guessed.

Half and hour later, the children were back downstairs and it was time to say goodbye. "Oh Janey, please come back soon!" Julie told her sister. 

"I will," Janey promised. "I am so pleased the children got on well. Jillie and Billie have been so in love with Jemima ever since I showed them the photos you sent and read them your letters about her. They couldn't wait to meet her and were so fond of her, they begged me to make them matching yellow dresses. I do hope you don't mind!"

"Don't be silly!" Julie said.

Now that Quackie and Jemima knew the twins' story, they felt they understood them better and were sad to see them go. Not only had Jemima had a great time playing with her cousins, they even turned out to be her biggest fans. 

"Come back soon," Jemima told Jillie and Billie. 

"We will, Jemima. Thank you for playing with us, Jemima," they squeaked.


🐥  THE END  🐥