Ralfie and Jemima

Ralfie and Jemima

Sunday, 6 June 2021



Dear Friends and Readers,

Unfortunately, I am not doing well and need to postpone the drawing of the giveaway to a future date.

I am sorry.

My health has declined and I am going to be admitted to the hospital soon for treatment.

I appreciate all your empathic and kind comments from my last post, as well as your private messages of support. Your friendship means the world to me.

Jemima and I are looking forward to seeing you all again soon.

Thank you for your understanding and please take care. 

Hugs from Nina & the Riversiders

Wednesday, 28 April 2021

For My Mother

My dear friends,

As many of you know, today is the 10th anniversary of this blog and the Riversiders started to prepare for the greatest party of their lives in anticipation, last month.

It is with a very heavy heart that I have to tell you the saddest news of our lives. The Riversiders and I will not be celebrating today, because last Sunday, on April 18, my mother passed away after a long and courageous struggle with cancer.

The photo above features Matilda Mandrake, because she was one of my mother's favourite Riversiders. Today, I took Matilda, Jemima and Quackie to the cemetery for a visit to my mother's grave. I would like to share these photographs with you in addition to a few thoughts.

My mother Felicitas was a very happy, funny and bold person and a role model to me in the way that she dealt with illness, blows of fate and changes in general.

She is now buried next to the beech tree you can see in the pictures further below. 

In the first three photos, Matilda is sitting amid a wreath of Ranunculus - one of my mother's favourite flowers - and on top of the beautiful pink urn which contains her ashes and was sunk into the earth this Monday.

My mother was my favourite person in the whole world. I felt there was a special bond connecting me to my mother and even during adulthood I could always count on her for her love and support. She was my very best friend since my mid-twenties. 
I don't think this means that I love the rest of my family any less. I have a wonderful father, an amazing sister and a lovely brother-in-law. I believe it rather means that I felt "especially" close to her. When we were together I felt accepted with all my strengths and weaknesses and I felt at home

Although I am a grown woman, and even knowing my mother's death would some day be inevitable, I always felt her loss would mean that my own life would end too. It might sound silly to many of you, but I just could not help it. I am not sure what I thought would happen. Probably that I would become ill due to the grief and wither away. 


I will never be able to look into my mother's eyes and talk to her face to face again. Never again will I be able to kiss her warm cheek or hold her hand and share any type of news with her. But, strangely, although my mother died on the 18th, I have already survived a week and three days without her. Right now, I am alive and I am not ill.

I am certain that in a way my life really has ended. A chapter of my life, I mean. It will never be the same and I will always feel the difference between my life now and the way that it felt when my mother was still here. 

I'm not sure why, but some people (even those that have lost a person most dear to them) tell me, "Rejoice, your mother is no longer suffering!", as if this were the only issue that gave us any sorrow. 

I am very, very grateful that my mother is now free from the frailty and pain that the illness inflicted upon her. Because the suffering was intense and there was no other way out and she deserves to be well. 

But although death came as a merciful release for her, for my father and I the long work of mourning has only just begun, and we will always miss her and feel the piercing stab of her absence. 

Rest in peace Mama, or maybe you prefer to party? 

Whatever the case, I wish you the best of times wherever you are now. 

This blog entry is for you. 

I love you. But you already know that.

Tuesday, 13 April 2021

A Personal Update


Dear friends,

As some of you know, I had been planning to publish a new post once a week. 

I have so many ideas, as well as many old and new photos and even a special project that I have not yet told you about. 

However, my mother's health has seriously deteriorated over the past weeks. She has a cancer tumor that cannot be removed and it is taking over her body. 

My mother is my favourite person in the whole world and my best friend. She has been in palliative care at our home now for some weeks and is being cared for by my family and I, nurses and doctors. 

Right now, each day is different but there is always so much work to do. Unfortunately, my mother is getting weaker day by day. I don't know how much time we have left with her and how my life will go on after her loss. It is all very frightening at the moment.

I do not know yet how often I will be posting any new content during the next weeks as I want to spend a lot of time with my mother and family right now, but I also need time for myself and my hobbies in order to stay well and Riverside is a good place to be.

I felt like sharing these thoughts with you, even it is is a sad issue and nothing to do with miniatures or Sylvanians. If you have been through something similar and would like to share, feel free to message me.

The tiny kangaroo sitting on the flower is baby Valentina Zoraida. Jemima, Ralfie and their friends send you their hugs and kisses. 

Have a look at Riverside's babies and toddlers in the photo above. They were so well behaved on Easter (after I gave them each a creamy chocolate egg to eat), that they kept still for about three seconds - enough to take this photo.

Lots of love to everyone and take care.

Friday, 2 April 2021

10-Year Anniversary GIVEAWAY


Dear friends & dear readers old and new,

Today, Jemima would like to announce that our 10-YEAR ANNIVERSARY is coming up on April 28! 😊💖

Apart from the Riversiders celebrating like crazy, (one of them has already started; I think you can imagine who it is and yes, he is cooking up a new batch of homemade toffee at this very moment) they have decided to do a GIVEAWAY of the HOPPIN' EASTER SET. 

Absolutely ANYONE can take part. Whether you are an old reader or a new one, whether you have recently received a parcel from Riverside or not. All you need to do is: 

1. leave a comment underneath this blogpost saying that you would like to enter our lottery; 

2. post a link to my giveaway (or a blogpost dedicated to it) on your blog or website.

The drawing will NOT take place on our anniversary (April 28), but rather on May 28, because we would like to give everyone enough time to enter.

Here is Jemima with some more pictures of the beautiful prize:

Thanks in advance for your entries 

and GOOD LUCK!!! 🍀

Sunday, 21 March 2021

The Oyster Rabbits

Let us welcome a new family to Riverside. 

They are called the Mariners. 

The Mariners are Oyster Rabbits. 

Oyster Rabbits love to live on or near the sea. They are also excellent swimmers and divers and they love to eat seafood.

The Mariner children are called Matse and Madita.

Matse and Madita were born on the ocean. They lived on a boat with their parents and travelled northern oceans. They are very excited to find out what it is like to live on land.

The parents are called Mikkel and Miri. They have built this beautiful lighthouse near the river for their family. 

The river of Riverside does not need a lighthouse, but I guess the Mariners, being Oyster Rabbits, do.

Mikkel was born into a long line of sailors. He is used to having calluses on the inside of his paws from steering a boat and to the tang of salt and algae travelling with the breeze and clinging to rabbits' clothing and furs.

His favourite dreams are of foaming waves and his favourite colour is blue.

Miri used to live on an island in the southern oceans. She was a champion swimmer and diver in her youth and won the Golden Wave (the island's highest award for water sports) three years in a row. 

Her favourite words are Matse and Madita.

Today the Mariners are checking on their new lighthouse. They need to get some furniture before they can move in.

Suddenly a little beige rabbit is walking along the pier towards Miri. It's Jemima. She is pushing her toy pram in front of her with Quackie inside.

The Mariners have already met the Periwinkles. 
"Hello, Jemima!" Miri says. "Are you coming for a visit?"

"Oh nooo," replies the little rabbit girl. "I come for staying. Mommy want bath me every day this week, so I run away. I stay with you now."

"Oh dear," smiles Miri. "Don't you like to bath? It makes you smell good and your fur shine."
"Nuh-uh. I don't like wodah."

"What about Quackie? I'm sure she likes water!" Miri says optimistically.
"Quackie only likes the river and the pond. No bathtubs," Jemima says firmly.

"All right," Miri proposes, "then why don't you let Quackie take a swim right here in the river? I'm sure she'll be grateful for the exercise." 

Quackie seems very happy indeed, as she swims in the water next to the pier in little circles. She looks at Jemima as if to say, "come and join me!" 
"I think she wants you to swim with her," says Miri. "But the water is still very cold. You should wait until the summer." 

Then Miri explains to Jemima all the wonderful things you can do in the water. Synchronized swimming and water ballet. Water skiing. Snorkelling and diving. Beach ball and water aerobics. Or simply lying on your back and letting the water carry you. You can swim in competition or search for a long lost underwater treasure...

After a while, Jemima takes Quackie out of the water and pops her back into the pram. She gets up and tells Miri that she will give the bathtub another try, maybe there is pirate treasure stuck somewhere at the bottom of it.

"My dears," Miri says to Matse and Madita, "could you please accompany Jemima back home?" 
"Sure Mom!" The siblings reply.

All of a sudden Ralfie Hazelnut appears on the wooden pier, a little out of breath. "Your momma told me to find you. She thought you might be at the lighthouse. Are you goin' away, Jemima?" Ralfie frets.

"No Ralfie," Jemima answers. "Just home now, to da bathtub. Wanna come too? I think you should, you look real dirty." 

"Aww, I don't like bathing so much...", Ralfie says evasively.
"You can play with my little pony after...," Jemima adds astutely. She knows he loves to play with her ponies, because he always asks about them when he is at her house, admiring her collection and combing the ponies' hair.

"Okay", replies Ralfie while sucking on his lollipop and off the four children go to Jemima's house.

The Mariners say HELLO

and wish you a MARVELLOUS week.

đŸ€ ⛵ đŸ€

Sunday, 14 March 2021

Let's Take The Car (Part 2)


On the same day another well-known family went for a drive. 

There was a friendly zombie snowman on the side of the road that hadn't stood there before. Even though christmas had long passed, he was wearing a santa hat and holding a christmas wreath in his right tentacle.

"Hello! Do you need a ride?" Fudge asked the snowman. The snowman smiled and declined. 

Maybe he was waiting for the sun to get a bit warmer and melt him, so he could get some rest until next winter?

The squirrel from earlier was there too, but this time he did not seem to be in a rush. 

He chattered something into the ear of a chubby little bear cub. 

"Don't you just love Riverside's wildlife, Pickels?" Fudge said to his dragon friend inside the car. "There are always interesting animals to admire, as soon as we leave the house."

Pickles nodded. He didn't care much for wildlife, though. Longingly, he sniffed at the packet of toffees that was tucked behind him on the seat. He knew that Fudge would probably want him to wait with snack time until they had finished their errand. Why? Because Fudge had started the new year with something really stupid... so-called "good" resolutions! 

Ew. Pickles did not like them at all, because they had to do with awful things like eating three packets of caramel a day instead of four, brushing his teeth before bed and washing behind his ears. And Fudge expected Pickles to do the same.

Today, Fudge was planning a surprise for me! He was driving to my house to gift me with some chocolates from Lindt. Wasn't that a sweet idea? Especially, since it wasn't Valentine's Day, Easter, or my birthday. Fudge was simply being attentive. 

Fudge passed by the chubby bear cub and Mr. Squirrel.

The squirrel hopped from the bear's shoulder onto the back of Fudge's car. So that was why he wasn't in a hurry anymore. Apparently he had thought up a way of saving time by hitchhiking.

A little while later Fudge arrived at my house to give me the Lindt chocolates. They were delicious and I thanked him and it was all very touching, because I had never before been gifted chocolates on a random day by a tiny little BiWuBear before.

On their way back, Pickles was lounging on the back seat of the car inside his woolen sleeping bag, burping happily. There were cookies and chocolates and fudge and sweets scattered across the floor in front of him.

Suddenly Fudge saw another snowman. He drove more slowly.

This one was definitely hoping to get a free ride. Fudge could feel it. 


He didn't look like a friendly tentacled zombie snowman, though. Just friendly.

Fudge got out of the car and walked up to the snowman, smiling. The snowman smiled back.

"Hello, how are you? Do you need a ride?" asked Fudge.

"Um..." the snowman stuttered awkwardly. "Actually, I was looking for somebody... anybody... interested in chocolate. My best before date is about to expire. You see, I am a leftover from christmas and nobody wanted me."

Fudge was struck by the snowman's candour. He was now in a rather serious dilemma, though. Several dilemmas. 

On the one hand, he liked chocolate very much. It was his favourite food after fudge and caramel. On the other hand, he had made a new-years resolution which he wanted to stick to.

Also, he had never eaten anyone whom he had had a conversation with!

Finally, Fudge patted the snowman on the shoulder and said, "Would you like to come home with Pickles and I? We could forget about your best-before-thingy and spend some quality time on the sofa during the next few days, reading books and having lots of hot milk and fudge."

The snowman seemed to ponder this for a while and then he exhaled and laughed out loud simultaneously and said, "Okay, let's do it!! I knew this was going to be my lucky day. But I had never imagined anything like this... Are we friends now, Mr. Bear?"

"Sure, we're friends!" Fudge replied happily. 
"And my name is Fudge, by the way." 

The snowman's name was Choccy. 

Fudge could sense how excited Choccy was as he followed him to the car. 

"Let's go home Choccy! Pickles and I will show you our house. It's called Caramel Cottage and I'm sure you'll enjoy staying with us. My warm milk with fudge is the best in all of Riverside, did you know..."

And off they went. 

Sometimes I am a bit concerned at Fudges' habit to collect people off the road or from the forest and keep them as lodgers or friends at Caramel Cottage, but, fortunately, he seems to have a knack for meeting strangers that turn out to be really good people, as we were already able to find out in a post called "And the winner is... Fudge??".

Sunday, 7 March 2021

Let's Take The Car


It was another cold winter's day in Riverside with several degrees celcius below zero, so nobody (who could help it) would go anywhere on foot. 

The Periwinkles decided to go for a little drive. Their car was a convertible and, unfortunately, the roof's mechanism had broken the day before, so they had to create an alternative using a blanket for James and Julie and a scarf for the children.

Jemima's best friend Ralfie Hazelnut was staying over for the weekend, so he came along for the ride, as well as Quackie, Jemima's rubber duck.

The car radio was playing one of Jemima's cassettes and the children were singing to the intro of "Lamb Chop's Play Along", Jemima's favourite childrens' TV show.

Suddenly something furry and orange landed on the car's engine hood. James hit the brakes. 
It was a red squirrel and it seemed to be clamouring about something. It was normal for squirrels in Riverside to seem to be chattering, but this one sounded like it was speaking English!

"I'm late, I'm late - don't burn me on the grate!
I hope you can forgive me love, for I will compensate!"

James and Julie gazed at each other in disbelief and then returned to stare at the squirrel, that had crossed the engine hood and landed on the other side of the street, on top of the high mound of snow.

It turned toward the opposite side of the street again and went on chattering: 

"I'm late, I'm late - bad breaks accumulate!
If you should not believe me hon, then no one will relate!" 

This time, everyone heard it even more clearly. 

"Mommydaddy, squirrel's in a rush!" Jemima exclaimed. Ralfie nodded energetically. Though they were certainly intrigued, they were not as jaw-droppingly amazed as the parents at talking forest animals. 

James and Julie stared at each other one more time. Julie whispered, "Am I the only one getting rather strong Alice vibes here?" she asked, probably referring to the White Rabbit from Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. And then, in the unreasonable way adults often have (even when they are rabbits in Sylvania), they shook their heads once more in disbelief and chose to forget all about the incident in a sudden attack of amnesia.

Ralfie and Jemima on the other hand spent a while pondering the squirrel's words. They guessed that Mr. Squirrel was referring to his wife when he said "love" and "hon". 
As James resumed driving, the children saw the squirrel cross the road once more and join another one of his kind on top of a heap of snow. If it was his spouse, they hoped she would believe whatever it was that had happened to him and, more importantly, forgive him for being so late, because they did not want her to fry him.