Thursday, December 24, 2009

SALE crazy bargains promotions

The little ones are having an end of year sale!
Your choice of 20% off, OR, buy any two tummies and get a “little tummy” for free.
Just write a wee note on the “note to seller” whether you want the 20%off refund, OR, the name of the “little tummy” you want (they’re all playing in my little tummy section) and all will be done by the little ones with extra sticky tape and smudgy fingers! Sale ends 3rd of January.

I would like to include the hysterical words "bargain" and "crazy" and "for a short time only"

Thursday, December 17, 2009

christmas wish of a wee boy

My nephew, Wee Golden, has wandered up to tummy mountain to do a little bit of walking with sticks with the little ones. Wee Golden has bright blue eyes and curly locks of gold. He is younger than Wee Tiny and even smaller than Wee Small . You could say he looks like a cherub but cuter. I asked Wee Golden what he would like for Christmas. He was quite direct, certain and emphatic on what he wanted from Santa.

"A motorcycle and two dragons!" he shouted.

I had to ask myself - does Santa ever deliver extremely dangerous presents?

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

the fishermen

Way down in the valley some fishermen sat, quietly, fishing.
Wee Small went to see. Wee Small yelled to all the little ones to come and join her.
All the little ones had a lovely time asking the fishermen lots of questions.
Sadly the fishermen went away.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

dragonfly

A dragonfly flew into the house today. Such a brilliant iridescent blue.



Yet it's spectacular colouring wasn't the source of pleasure for The Cat - as it pounced on the wee dragonfly.

The Little One, being the eldest, rescued the dragonfly. It hopped on the end of her finger and sat there all secure and happy as she took it outside. She told me the dragonfly's name was "Drenina." The Little One has a way with wee insects.

A huge wasp flew in later on. It was at least an inch and a half long. None of the little ones would go near it. I did what I normally do; caught the thing in a tea towel and took it outside where it buzzed annoyedly around my head for a bit before flying off.

"One of these days I am going to be stung by one of those wasps." I said.
"How do you know that?" asked Wee Tiny "Can you see the
future?"

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

we saw santa

The little ones and I are were making one of our infrequent journeys into reality to get the kind of supplies one needs to keep on living on tummy mountain; candle sticks, accordions, cuckoo clocks, that kind of thing.

Near to our journeys end the little ones saw Santa Claus standing by the wayside.

"Santa!" yelled Wee Tiny.
"I'm not sure that's the real Santa" I said, " The real Santa isn't usually holding up a sign to advertise a shop"
"The real Santa doesn't wear a sparkly red cowboy hat" said The Little One
"Yes, that too" I said.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

eating


How the little ones eat bread.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

christmas wishes of a cat


The Cat's Christmas list, transcribed by The Little One.

Monday, November 30, 2009

expectations

The Little One, being the eldest, feels compelled to offer her advice and expertise to Wee Small about her Christmas list. The Little One seems to think that Santa may not understand what all Wee Small's scribbles are.

She had this sage piece of wisdom to offer.

The Little One: You should get someone to write it for you.

Wee Small looks sullen. She likes writing in her own invented alphabet of up and down scribbles.

The Little One: Last year I drew a picture of a sewing machine, but because I could not write "sewing machine" I didn't get one. Santa did not know what it was. It looked like a bus stop.

Wee Small: Did you get a bus stop for Christmas?

The Little One: No, I didn't.

(Well I personally think one should be able to spell "sewing machine" before being let loose on one. )

Saturday, November 28, 2009

science facts: the smaller they are...

...the earlier they wake up.

Then due to the inverse properties of the Wee Tiny Law of Wakefulness, one must also be awake with them to listen to the dawn chorus of cicadas.

Some people would be watching the softly changing pink sky with splashes of cream on the clouds with delight. But my eyes are welded shut, only bleariness enters them at this time. My eyes refuse to work until it is a respectable hour. Like 10:30am.

So it's just the ears that function in the sensory department at this stage. They are doing their bit for the team "shoulder to the grindstone, all hands  now" and other such marvellous phrases of communal "pulling together" under dificult circumstances. The body hears the call of the ears and grumbles '"Oh alright then" and shuffles about looking for a teapot using the arms, without the guide of the eyes. The eyes dismiss all that caring and sharing nonsense with a curt "no." The eyes are the aristocrats of the body.

There is a lot of social politics involved in today's science lesson.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

not hot at all.

I was lying in the shade under a tree, even though the weather had changed from what meteorologists technically describe as "outrageous" to "balmy, with light zephyrs."

Wee Small marched up to me and said "It's tomorrow!"

I don't know how she works that one out. It certainly had me puzzled. If it was tomorrow then what was I doing now?

Sunday, November 22, 2009

too hot

It's too hot today.
To get all stroppy and technical about it, it's 41° Celsius or 106° Fahrenheit.

Which is just too hot for all the tiny ones on tummy mountain. And too hot for the not so tiny ones as well.

The Little One has discovered the tape measure, and is measuring everything, and giving us regular updates on how tall, long or short everything is. I cannot imagine that I will need or even be able to recall any of this knowledge in 10 minutes time. I think if it isn't too hot for measuring, then it is too hot for the regular updates at least.

Wee Small is babbling incessantly. It's definitely too hot to be babbling incessantly. Earlier today she did this to an apple:




"I did it with my nails" she said.

Bring on another storm.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

time to dust off the tummy mountain emergency response system

Sometimes on tummy mountain you can see the clouds boiling up into a massive grey stack from the south west, and hear the rolling peals of thunder telling one and all that the hot weather is about to be broken with a huge storm.

I do what any person does in a time of crisis: I rush out to take the washing off the line.
The little ones rush out to sound the tummy mountain emergency response system. Their voices.

From out the front I could here the joyous yelling of small children and I wondered what they were doing. Luckily Wee Small has a voice, that one could politely say, carries. So I could here her bellowing from the fields:

             "Attention! Attention! All Butterflies!
              Get under cover now!
              There is going to be a Big Storm!
              Emergency! All Butterflies!
              Stay at home! The Rain is Coming!"

Well, we all have to do what we feel is the right thing to do when the big storms come.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Stop Press: Little Ones See the Future

Many people from all the four corners of tummy mountain have thrown their arms up in the air at the astonishing news just in today. It appears that the little ones have hitherto unexpected accurate powers of precognition, or to put it in good old fashion plain speaking English - they can see the future.

Independent observers were astounded when Wee Small announced that in March 2010 she would go "walking with sticks." Scientific analysts were amazed at Wee Tiny's ability to forecast that sometime in April 2010 she would "dance with some rabbits."



Tummy mountain officials in black suits and sunglasses have documented all the predictions in a calendar, with some artistic impressions of each future event in chronological order, to see whether the little ones' pronouncements will come to pass, or fall by the wayside like so many other flash in the pan hoaxes of the past.


Despite the cynical scepticism of the bureaucracy, on the auspicious date of November 18 journalists from Etsy reported these amazing abilities, but due to my inadequate grasp of what is happening right now (let alone the future, or indeed the past) I was unable to document with strict historical accuracy the news as it broke on the front page of Etsy. Other alternative agencies verified the broadcast as seen here thanks to Craftcult.

Monday, November 16, 2009

rescue mission

The Little One, being the eldest, is far more capable of certain tasks and applying herself than, let's say, Wee Small who tends to crush and break things, then yell at the remains. They say that sometimes little children love things too much. Oh well.

One day when The Little One went out to play she found a butterfly all fresh out of the cocoon drying it's wings in the air and all ready for it's first flight. Unfortunately the ants had found the butterfly too.

The Little One rescued the butterfly, made a nice little home for it with food and all and left it in a nice place outside to recover away from the ants. Which the butterfly did and flew away.

I said to her " You rescued that butterfly you know. The ants would have eaten it."
"Of course they would," she replied "The ants were hungry. I could see that selfish look on their faces."

It was hard to remain composed after that statement.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

wee and small and pony

Not long ago the little ones told me about a farm up on the ridge where there were very small ponies.
Now we were there, the little ones and I.
And this is the wee pony
















She is clearly a very small pony.
We gave her (and her mum) a carrot and continued on our way.

She is a very sweet (and a very small) pony.

Monday, November 9, 2009

wee piggy bank

Wee Small has been saving up.
She now has 11 moneys.
She is going to buy a real live pony.
Do you think she has enough?

Sunday, November 8, 2009

misery on the mountain

All the little ones have the sniffles.
So have I.
Never has there been such misery.
We like to wallow in our misery.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

other worlds

Sometimes when I am cooking up some soup for the wee tinies I will ask The Little One, she being the eldest and most responsible, if she could gather some ingredients from the vegetable patch. She'll stop whatever she is doing and go out and do this for me. She has always been happy to do this. And now I know why.

Last night I went with her and discovered a whole new world on tummy mountain that I was unaware of. With her little lamp in hand that bobs along leaving a pool of light glowing around her feet she is joined first by a mysterious cat - huge fat and black, that runs around and pounces on her, runs off into the darkness, returns and pounces on her again. He is playing some kind of game on his own. Who could understand the imaginings of this night predator. The Little One says hello but is barely deflected on her way to the vegetable patch.

The cat slinks off into the night, and almost immediately the happy "voot voot" noises of the bandicoots start up again. Their little shadowy bodies scurry about as they snuffle and happily dig up the front lawn looking for grubs. Voot.

When she reaches the vegetable patch The Little One says hello to all the snails that have come out to eat our vegetables. They are her little friends and she has a wee talk to them as she gathers some spinach. She helps the occasional straggler straight onto a tomato plant. It is their food first and foremost, we are just borrowing some leaves of spinach. Satisfied that everyone is happy she heads back inside.

On her way back everything that happened before happens again, just in reverse order.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

the correct way to have breakfast

Every now and then the hankering for bacon and eggs for breakfast occurs. I do believe that hankering is the correct word. I think the word "desire" for bacon and eggs would set us all off on the wrong course. I would save "desire" for chocolate cake. The little ones wouldn't save "desire" at all and would just get straight into the chocolate cake as soon as they could regardless of whether there was going to be bacon and eggs or anything else. And they definitely would not fuss about the word "hankering" with a mouth full of chocolate cake.

The real problem with the bacon and eggs was not so much the hankering, more the eggs. We needed more eggs. I suggested scrambling them, as adding the milk bulks it up a bit and no-one can really tell how many eggs they have anyway. Wee Tiny was against this idea and told me so loudly. She did not like scrambled eggs at all.

"But" I pointed out, even though I was sure I should not begin a sentence with 'but" I also felt the stronger neccessity of getting directly to the point of the problem without wafting along worrying about what were the correct words to use and when to use them.

"But when we eat bacon and eggs,you don't like eggs at all. You won't be eating them What does it matter to you how they are cooked"

Wee Tiny was not at all persuaded by my illogical point of view and settled they entire matter by going out on the swing saying loudly that she wanted porridge.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

learning

The Small One said "S...I... E... A... I think that's the word for someone's phone number."

Saturday, October 24, 2009

in true life

The smaller they are, the more astounding the revelation.

One day as we walked in the long grass beside the stream, Wee Small was keeping a continuous flow of babble about all the kinds of things that were occupying her mind at that moment. Or at least that is how it appears to me. Wee Tiny and I walked beside her listening, or not listening as the case may be. Amongst all of this I caught the phrase 'in true life" - she was referring to "jumpolines" (aka trampolines; scientific equipment used in assisting the small ones in their goal to fly) and I wondered that if jumpolines exist "in true life" then what kinds of things did not occur "in true life." So I asked her.

With no hesitation Wee Small told me "monsters."
I was glad to know that Monsters do not exist in true life.
Wee Small was not glad that I had strayed off the point and got it straight back to jumpolines. The babble continued all the way home.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

quest

Up along the ridge to the west of tummy mountain is a farm that has some very small ponies. I was not aware that ponies came in that size. Were I to saddle up and mount the pony I am sure I would still be standing on the ground.

And so if I could not be carried along by this tiny horse, maybe I could carry it along in my arms instead, like a wee baby, taking it to different parts of the paddock and letting it snuffle the flowers.

The Small One told me I was silly.

Yet times change and with the onset of spring these very small ponies have had little babies of their own. I have been told the correct word is "foals"

Now I am very determined to head on up to the farm soon and carry one of these wee baby "foals" in my arms. I believe it to be the right thing to do. For too long have humans been carried by horses. I would like to return the favour, and bring a bit of balance back to the world.

Friday, October 16, 2009

the studious ones

The little ones are fervent astronomers.
Indeed, they are acquainted with all the stars that appear in the night sky above tummy mountain.
This knowledge is due to their diligence, their dedication, and from many evenings spent floating amongst them.


Thursday, October 15, 2009

the smaller they are...

... the cuter they look when they sing "I'm a little teapot, short and stout..."

Monday, October 12, 2009

chatter

I was heading off to bed when I heard Wee Small talking in her sleep. I can only imagine what she was dreaming because I heard her say "ghosties love coconut."

Monday, October 5, 2009

encouragement

The little ones are riding their hobby horses (at least I think they are called hobby horses - they look like cute pony heads on a broom stick) around tummy mountain.

After a long days ride the hobby horses need a little encouragement to keep up the pace. So the little ones have hung apples and carrots on the end of sticks to help them.

Sunday, October 4, 2009

quiet reflection

Over the course of a day the little ones find themselves subject to the different moods and emotions as we all do.

Occasionally the little ones collectively need to drop their toy ponies and engage in a moment's quiet soulful introspection.

Of course they have their own special place to do this when the mood takes them.



The thinking tree.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

whispering pines

Sometimes people wander up to tummy mountain and find me with my paints and easel out in a field wearing a dazed expression and request their own custom portrait.

Such is the case below


I never refuse an opportunity to paint chickens!

Sunday, September 20, 2009

on the land

I couldn't find a broom.

This is because The Little One and Wee Tiny had made it into a horse.

I wasn't looking for (but I would also have not found if I had been looking) a mop, all the string, the feather duster, the dinner table chairs, all of the outside furniture, a bucket, some of the stepping stones, and the step ups.

These had all become cows, pigs, dogs, cats, chickens and other farm animals with happy faces drawn on each and every one.

So another typical day on tummy mountain. I will have to make other arrangements for sweeping.

Quite unusually the little ones asked me to help them with a story for the farm. So I said that the farm belonged to Pete, who use to be a pirate but he got terribly seasick in that job and decided to be a farmer instead. The sheep were his crew - on account of how well they say "baa."

I thought that was quite creative and would tickle their imagination.

Wee Tiny told me I was silly.

The Little One told me they were growing clouds.

Well... maybe I will have to save Pete the Seasick Pirate for another day then.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

A new adventure

We have been away from tummy mountain on an adventure. The adventure is tentatively titled:

"Little Ones in the Snow"

We could begin with the moment the little ones first saw the snow, on mountains much taller and spectacular than the small round ones at tummy mountain.

We could speak of the little ones composing their own little songs to these mountains which feature the lyrics "Look at the mountains HIGH" repeated ad infinitum.

Yet I feel that the excitement really begins with the Smallest of All sitting by the window seat in an aeroplane preparing to fly. The little ones have of course dedicated a lot of time to flying - running about with their arms flapping. Now their dreams were coming true, with just a small bit of assistance from a jumbo jet, where they would fly across the sky and through the clouds.

"Are we flying yet?" asks the Smallest of All.
"No, we haven't left the terminal yet" I reply.

The Smallest of All is by the window even though she is so small she cannot really see out of it.

"Are we flying yet?" asks the Smallest of All.
"You have only just asked me that."
"But are we flying yet??"
"No."

It has been my dream to take them to the snow for a long time now. I love the snow, but I am also worried that the little ones may not understand that it is quite cold, and it can be wet, and you can get a red nose and cold feet.

The plane begins to taxi away from the terminal and heads towards the runway.

"Now are we flying?" asks the Smallest of All.
"Believe me, you will know when we are flying."

Wee Tiny, being a bit taller (if that is possible) than the Smallest of All, helps her little sister by pointing at things out the window.

"Look at THAT!" exclaims Wee Tiny. A plane whooshes by and is gone.
"Where, what?!" cries The Smallest of All.

Our plane is now on the runway. It builds up speed. Everything is shaking. The plane lurches into the air and starts climbing up and up. It is quite thrilling. The ground drops away and the plane heads off over the ocean and then into a huge cloud. We emerge into a dreamy world of golden clouds in a pink sky. We are truly on our way now.

"Are we flying yet?" asks the Smallest of All.

Thursday, August 27, 2009

the historic record

Being assigned the role as the chronicler of events upon tummy mountain, it is my task to use whatever methods required to document the little ones for the accuracy of the historic record. In much the same way as historians, archaeologists and etymologists use not only the finest research libraries available, they will also record the spoken word, document cave paintings, and even sift through the remains of lost settlements in the noble search for understanding of not only the past, but our present as well. In this same way I discovered that an event had occurred on tummy mountain and had been recorded for posterity by The Smallest of All upon a balloon.

video

From examining the artifact I gather there had been a stampede of ponies on tummy mountain.

Saturday, August 22, 2009

the importance of a good education

The little ones don't go to school, but that does not stop them playing it. They see themselves as the great educators dispensing essential knowledge to all who will learn. What they need though, and sometimes cannot find, is a willing student. Today's student is the cat. Wee Tiny holds the cat while Wee Small turns the pages of a maths book. The cat does not seem to be focused on what 2 + 3 equals. The cat has a hunted look on its face and makes a break for freedom. Our teachers chase the student all over tummy mountain but he will not come back and tell them the answer. I think this behaviour will look bad on his report card.

Teachers are ever resourceful when dealing with misbehaving students. They have a foolproof plan to lure their student back to school. They are now dressing up as mermaids so that the cat thinks they are fish, and will come to them.

Out of the house rush two bumblebee fairies! Bumblebees?!? It seems the mermaid plan has changed. The little ones rush around the garden wiggling in the plants, pollinating them and having a wonderful time. The cat senses it is safe to come back.

The bumblebee fairies stare at the black cat. The cat stares back. The bumblebee fairies chase after him with strips of fabric. They have decided he needs yellow stripes to be a bumblebee fairy too.

School must be out for the day.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Bath Time

Wee Tiny and Wee Small were in the bath washing their soft dolls.
Wee Tiny was quite surprised that the colour of her doll's dress is actually blue!
Yet Wee Small was having a different sensory experience.
"Mmmm," she said. "My doll smells like fresh carrots."

Saturday, August 15, 2009

whoosh!

The little ones have always enjoyed indulging in the nutritionally beneficial food so prevalent at Halloween. Being methodical they have already begun beta testing of this year's essential equipment - dress ups and a fast broom.


All manner of Halloween traditions are being included in a new colouring in book by Yaelfran with lots of artists getting ready for the lolly - I mean spooky season. Check it out here.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

a piece of tummy mountain: chapter 6

It has been a long time since I have been able to sit down and return to painting this huge picture of tummy mountain.

This time I climbed up the big tree and painted all these leaves.

...and I started painting a bit of these tree roots out. Not happy with that at all...


...and this is it so far, until I pick up the paintbrush again!

Monday, August 10, 2009

the air and the light

I love the final light of the day. The afterglow when the sun has set behind the mountains, and the valley lies in deep shadows. The twilight creatures are out and about, the insects buzz one last time around the wildflowers, and the little ones know that it is the end of the day and time to come home.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

ladybird parade

It is that time of year when all the little ones on tummy mountain clamber onto a vine to get a good spot to see the annual ladybird parade.



This happy event is being included in a colouring in book by Yaelfran, featuring more artists on etsy with their own happy pictures. Check it out here.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

new places, new faces

The little ones have been away from tummy mountain visiting... well... visiting a new little one. Up on the high plain away to the south of tummy mountain their newly born cousin was gurgling to meet them.

So off we went.

After a few hours Wee Small commented that she never knew that there was an Earth so big. She must be used to some other smaller Earth - a garden sized Earth, about tummy mountain size.

The high plain is colder than tummy mountain, but not cold enough for snow. This was very disappointing to Wee Tiny. She wanted to make a snowman.

The little ones met their new baby cousin. She was very small. Smaller than Wee Small. Tinier than Wee Tiny. Being only a few weeks old she wasn't quite up to playing chasings or hide n seek yet. But she was up for cuddles and some big sleeps!

Then it was time to travel back over that big big Earth of Wee Small's until we made it back to our little Earth - the one around tummy mountain.

Friday, July 24, 2009

the wheels of commerce

For two weeks I have been held prisoner. I had been captured by the villainous work demons, but I escaped by hiding under a table when no-one was looking, and then jumping out a window.

At last I have returned to tummy mountain where I belong, gazing lovingly into the bulging eyes of frogs, jumping unexpectedly out of the long grass, and being invited to tea parties by the little ones.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

helpful

Wee Small, as you may have gathered by now, can be very helpful.
Just last night she was helping Wee Tiny. Explaining things to her, making it crystal clear.

"M,A,U,K,J,E" said Wee Small
"And what does that spell?" asked Wee Tiny
"It spells 'S,A,B,H,V.'" said Wee Small.
"Oh." said Wee Tiny.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

a meeting of minds

Wee Small has very blue feet.
She has been colouring them in with marker pens.
She informs me that she is a dolphin.

"Perfect. How would you like to swim in the bath?"

Monday, July 6, 2009

sometimes...

...sometimes it is hard to find a broom on tummy mountain.
...sometimes all the brooms have become horses.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Stop Press!

Baby bird's big debut!

Wee Peep has always wanted to be with the big birds. Fly with the big birds! Eat worms with the big birds! But most of all she wanted to just "hang out" on the big wall with the big birds. Alas, even though she tried and tried, she was just too small and too round for her little wings to fly her up there.


But today she did it!

And now she is with her big friends. They look after her and make sure she is alright.

Of course the tummy mountain chronicler was on hand and the event has been commemorated on the front page!


Sunday, June 28, 2009

rain

it is raining on tummy mountain.

sometimes it rains on tummy mountain.

...and sometimes it rains a bit more on tummy mountain.

...and sometimes it keeps on raining on tummy mountain so that it feels that the little ones have been trapped inside for ever.

poor little ones.

one day the sun will come out and then they will be able to slide along the wet grass on their little tummies! That will be fun!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Stop Press!

Mystery of munched melons solved!

After extensive investigations, the source of little bite marks and uneaten chunks of watermelon in the tummy mountain veggie patch has finally been bought to light. Initially, sleuths retained to uncover the diabolical marauder, thought that the criminal mastermind behind the spoiled fruit were a gang of notorious snails equipped with very little ladders. As it turns out a more ordinary explanation was forthcoming.

The investigators staked out the veggie patch, and in the morning light obtained the evidence that was needed by way of a series of incriminating photographs.


The evidence.

It appears that Wee Tiny was waking up early, wandering outside, and having a dawn snack in her pyjamas. Wee Tiny has not shown the slightest remorse for heinous crime of spoiling fruit. When questioned why she engaged in such activities she could only respond "yummy watermelon."

Even though remedial action is unlikely to work, the investigators were pleased that they cracked the case and made the front page news.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

the herd

Usually there is a time in the day when every little one has been fed and watered, and are outside playing, that a sense of calm returns to the tummy household. In such moments curling up on the couch with my friend the book and a cup of tea are blissful.

During one such moment the other day I was disturbed by an unusual sound. The distant roar of a waterfall, or was it an earthquake. It was the thundering of hooves.

Into the calm house burst a herd of unicorns! Their newly decorated cardboard horns glittering and sparkling with wet paint! Their tails festooned with shiny stickers dragging framed photos and bowls and other ornaments crashing onto the floor! Their beautiful faces highlighted with marker pens for the next week at least!

The herd stampeded through every room before magnificently leaping through the air and onto the couch! The sunlight shone on their flowing manes as once more they jumped over me and up onto the window frame that I tell them not to jump on every day of their lives for their own safety!

Startled by the angry monster, they cascaded down from on high and fled the house as a pack, never to be seen again.

All that was left for me to do was to clean up the spilled tea and find my place in my book.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

cat food pie

Let me state categorically - there is no cat food in cat food pie.

This is one of my own recipes. I cook up a whole load of yummy vegetables and some meat and put it in a pie dish lined with pastry. Sounds easy so far, but what I have not said is that I divide the pie up by putting all the yummy mixture up one end, and at the other end goes all the things that the little ones will eat without picking through the meal at the table and removing the bits they don't like one by one with a running narrative of how they don't like those bits.

Sometimes their end of the pie gets a bit complicated and looks like a map of some country divided up into small regions like "The Land of No Tomato" and "The PFZ" (Pea Free Zone) and "Cheezonlyonia"

To be able to recognise the tasty bit for me and the plain and boring bit for them I make a pastry face on the pie. This is crucial as the little ones will tell you it is more important how food looks than what it tastes like. At least they'll say that first, and then they proceed to tell you that it doesn't taste nice bit by bit.



I love the pie. I think it tastes great. But it is at this point that it gets its name.

"Yuck!" says The Small One "It tastes like cat food."

Monday, June 15, 2009

my heart wasn't in it

How I failed at the invisible birthday party.

Wee Small's invisible friend Daisy was having an invisible birthday party.

"How old is she?" asked Wee Tiny
"Five!" said Wee Small

I personally love invisible birthday parties. So much easier hanging up the decorations, serving the food. But this time it was just a bit too early in the morning for me. I usually like these things to happen after the sun has risen. Not so for the little ones though, the best time is always right now.

"How old is she?" asked The Little One
"Seven" said Wee Small

It was really cold outside. We waited for Daisy to arrive and then we gave her invisible birthday presents. Wee Tiny gave her an invisible fairy costume. I gave her "Invisible Twister" - that should be an interesting thought for the little ones to get their heads around. Wee Small told me that Daisy already has lots of Invisible Twister. I felt put in my place. Wee Small had given Daisy shoes as that's what Daisy needed. "Oh." I said.

We played party games. I wanted to go inside and have a cup of tea. Instead I made an elephant parade for elephants. The little ones added a turtle, a dolphin, and a snail to my elephant parade. It was no longer an elephant parade. I wanted to go inside and have a cup of tea and some toast.

It was time for the cake. "At last," I thought. Then I realised that I didn't know something crucial to the party. Something unforgivable.

"How old is she?" I asked.
"Two!" said Wee Small

The cake was served.

"Delicious" I said.

I was wondering how I would ask what flavour it was without upsetting the hostess. Luckily Wee Tiny came to the rescue with a very delicate and subtly phrased question to coax the answer out of Wee Small without hurting her feelings.

"What flavour is it?" asked Wee Tiny
"Carrot!" said Wee Small.

By this stage I felt I could not continue with my lacklustre effort any longer. It was time for the truth. And anyway it is at this stage that one can politely leave a party having gone through all the proper processes. So I said that I had to go. Wee Small grumpily grabbed an invisible lolly bag and whacked it into my lap. It was then that I knew that I had failed. My heart wasn't in it, and now it was over.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

misunderstandings.

It was the Queen's birthday weekend in the land where tummymountain is. This meant it was a holiday for lots of people. On tummymountain life is just about a permanent holiday for the little ones and they continued on as always - dressing up as bumble bees, talking with grasshoppers, etc.

"The real Queen?' asked Wee Tiny
"Yes, the real Queen," I replied.

Wee Tiny had to consider this for a second, and then ask me again as my answer had been a bit obscure and I had left out vital bits of information that would make it make sense.

"Really, the real Queen?" asked Wee Tiny again.
"Yes, the real Queen," I replied. Again.

And off she ran to jump up and down like frogs.

I noticed, as one does, over the course of the day that Wee Tiny was a little subdued. I asked her if anything was wrong and she told me that there was. She was very worried about going to the Queen's birthday party because she would be a bit shy in front of the Queen.

"Oh little one." I said and picked her up and brought her up high "We're not invited. We're not going to her birthday party."

Needless to say there was a little bit more spring in her frog jumps after that was all cleared up.

for clarification purposes only

Saturday, June 6, 2009

the treasure pond

High up on tummy mountain the little ones found a pond where the night sky keeps her treasures.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

a little party for a big mammal

I awoke to find that the little ones had been up bright and early and had already commenced preparations for the days festivities. Every kitchen cupboard was open. A lot of ingredients had been used and I could see the trails they had made from the shelves to the mixing bowl. In the mixing bowl was flour, sugar, egg, spinach, water, pepper, mandarin, and mandarin peel. As Manatee was the guest of honour he was already dressed in a lovely floral frock and stuffed headfirst down the back of the couch. This was to guarantee that he would be surprised. I was assuming the other toys with him were to keep him company or distracted or both.

Eventually the concoction was dished up in great dollops onto all the plates and mostly assembled in front of all the invited guests. The other plates had left their contents on the floor and had now spread from the kitchen to the dining room. The invited guests stared into space as usual.

The tea party was a great success, as evidenced by the joyful footprints all over the couch and leading into every other room of the house. The occasion was Manatee's 2nd birthday. Last month he turned 7 with a similar amount of cleaning to be done.

I wonder how old he will be next month?

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

historical accuracy

The little ones have just found their family tree. They know it is theirs as it is very large and very round.

Sometimes they spend hours researching particular branches of their genealogy in pursuit of the strictest accuracy.

Sometimes there are amendments to be made when there are recent additions to their ancestral data.

Monday, May 25, 2009

light

The light bulb just blew. This begins an old and familiar ritual here on tummy mountain. 

1. The old light bulb is removed.
2. I walk with Wee Tiny down the hall.
3. I pick Wee Tiny up and show her the drawer full of new light bulbs.
4. Wee Tiny laughs at them and says "silly light bulbs"
5. I change the light bulb

It is important to stick to traditions and rituals.


Saturday, May 23, 2009

custom tummy

Occasionally somebody likes to see their very own little ones on tummy mountain. So they write a little letter to me about doing their own painting. 

First we have a wee cup of tea and chat about their little ones. These ones loved reading books, so I started sketching some little thumbnails.


Some of these little ones were having some big adventures within the pages of the books.


The cute close up of them reading the same book was chosen.


 Maybe they could be in an urban park. Maybe not.


Then I drew the sweeties up on the watercolour paper...


...and finally they are painted.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

whalesong

I have made an origami whale for Wee Small. She is now asking me which is my favourite song that she sings as she plays with the whale.

Do I like "whale, whale, whale"

or do I like "whale, whale, whale"

Both songs are identical. I choose "whale, whale, whale"

She says that is good because that's the one the whale likes her to sing as the whale swims along.


Saturday, May 16, 2009

zebra

I was too tired to tell a bedtime story to Wee Small, so she told me one instead. It was about a zebra that swam to tummy mountain. She was the only zebra in a jungle full of wildebeest and angler fish. I don't know how someone so small can even know about wildebeest and angler fish, let alone cast them as the evil villains in this story. 

Wee Small, being wee and small, has yet to learn the art of editing.

"...and it was a zebra and it had stripes and the stripes were on the zebra and she was walking on the footpath in the jungle and there was a tree and another tree and an even bigger tree..."

I have to say I dozed off at this point.

And isn't that what bedtime stories are for?

Sunday, May 10, 2009

phonetics

Wee Small was telling Wee Tiny which letters made sounds.
Wee Small said "'N' makes a 'neh' sound like in 'no,'  and 'U' makes a 'yuh' sound like in 'yes.'
Wee Tiny asked her "Do you know which letter makes a 'meh' sound?"
Wee Small said "Yes, it's 72."

Thursday, May 7, 2009

daddy long legs?

Daddy long legs has been crawling up the wall making slow progress. The cat has been watching his progress with too much interest. The cat has now been picked up and taken outside. The cat is telling us a tale of woe and misery from the back door. The tale plumbs the depths of sadness to the long empty plains of misunderstanding.

Wee Tiny has noticed that Daddy Long Legs is carrying something. An egg sac larger than his own body. Maybe he isn't Daddy Long legs after all.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Calamities

I have been lying in bed all a-sniffles with the sun streaming in the window. Occasionally I moan when I require pampering. 

It is now time to return to my roles and responsibilities on tummy mountain.

In the meantime Little Boy from Yonder Valley has broken his toe. The facts surrounding this dramatic event are a bit obscure, but what I can ascertain is that it involved a billy cart,  a cape, and the nozzle off the water pump. He has been away recovering. 

The little ones decided to make a welcome home party for him. So much effort went into it and as the sun began to set it seemed like the guest of honour would not be coming. It was time to come inside.

Later in the darkness we could hear Little Boy! He had arrived. He wasn't going to let the night and the damp spoil his welcome home party - and maybe it was better and more exciting by candle light.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

sniffles

sometimes on tummy mountain you get the sniffles.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

missing

One of my favourite things to do is find something that the little ones have lost. Particularly when it is somewhere only they would know where it is, somewhere obscure, and yet I am meant to have more ability to find it than they have. It is like they want you to play hide and seek with whatever it is.

Monday, April 20, 2009

springtime

the most wonderful thing about spring is the new little ones

Saturday, April 18, 2009

on the forest path

Nestled amongst the foothills around tummy mountain stands an old forest. Standing amongst these quiet giants, feeling the solitude, you may be forgiven in thinking that you are alone.



Yet one is never really alone on tummy mountain



There is always a little one close by to share it all with you.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

a piece of tummy mountain: chapter 5

The big picture continues. I am starting to paint in more of the details of the little scenes within. The tea party received some extra attention, and so did the little fairy parade.


the big picture


the adventure continues in the cardboard box, and down by the river two little ones are making some careful measurements with a stick.


Yes I would love some tea in my sugar.


learning to fly

Sunday, April 12, 2009

quiet on the mountain

The little ones noticed that Big Rabbit had disappeared.
Very mysterious.
Maybe something is happening that requires a very big rabbit. hmmmmm....

My basket is missing too...



Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Stop Press!

Missing explorers found safely up huge tree!

Two small people of indeterminate description were found safely today up a huge tree towards the back of tummy mountain. As far as can be ascertained the young adventurers had set forth to find some penguins before they went missing. They had set out on their expedition about ten minutes previously and had been missing for ten minutes.

A photographer from tribe magazine was on the scene of the dramatic rescue and snapped the photo that is on the front cover. A tall person from tummy mountain rescued the two children by using the recommended technique of yelling "Get down from there!"



The little ones are a little bit shy of their new found notoriety and are reported as being safe and well and having a hot chocolate.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

the problem of choice

The little ones are putting on a play.
I love the theatre.
It seems I have a choice of entertainment.
I can choose between;

"The Kangaroos of Mt. Simfarin" (content unknown - unknown duration) or
"The Tea and the Snail" ( a snail approaches a cup of tea - duration 10 hours) or
"Neigh Neigh and the Field" (in which a pony eats grass in a field for 4 days - duration 4 days)

I really can't decide between "The Tea and the Snail" - which is sure to be tense, thrilling and just overwhelming with the anticipation of the snail actually reaching the tea, and what it will do then, or the sheer mystery ride of "The Kangaroos of Mt. Simfarin."

Much as I would love to I just don't have 4 days to watch "Neigh Neigh and the Field."

Thursday, April 2, 2009

little ones go camping: going home

After a few nights under the stars it is time to go home.
Especially as everything is covered in mud.
Clothes, sleeping bags, apples, toothbrushes...

I have never been somewhere so idyllic away from tummy mountain. The huge sand dunes rolling away into the haze of the distance, the dolphins leaping through the lazy waves, the tidal pools teaming with crabs, starfish, and other tiny marine life, the dappled light of the forest disguising the slow movements of huge reptiles searching for food, the blaze of light from the stars - a white river in the night sky. I would love to return.

The little ones loved the mud. They loved splashing in the mud, holding palm fronds behind them and squawking like bush turkeys, and running through the puddles. They also liked lying in the mud, and making mud pies. Everyone feels rejuvenated in their own way.

We shoulder our packs and head on home.

little ones go camping: mud

Where there is rain there are puddles.
Where there are puddles there is mud.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

little ones go camping: sand and stars

At the end of a long day running around and pretending to be different animals it was time to take the little ones on an adventure. As the sun set we left the forest and roamed up onto the big sand dunes. In the twilight it reminded The Smallest of All of her adventures on the moon. Big round hills of sand, grey in the night, and bathed with the golden glow of a handful of lanterns carried by the little ones.

We gather together on the largest and roundest sand dune (perhaps because it looks a bit like tummy mountain) to gaze at the stars. The Little One tells us she knows all about stars and points out the constellations to us. I was unaware that a particular cluster low in the western sky was "The Happy Pumpkin" and another to its right was "The Giant Egg." Directly above us was "The Socks."

I am unfamiliar with these and must brush up on my astronomy.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

little ones go camping: the tent

We go into the tent.
We go out of the tent.
We go into the tent.
We go out of the tent
We go into the tent.
We go out of the tent.



Who possibly knew tents were so fun.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

little ones go camping: off we go

Out the front of the house are lots of little backpacks all nestling together like penguins. Final preparations are being made. Wee Small is saying goodbye to a slug.

Off we go.

We wave goodbye to tummy mountain and wander off into the hills beyond. The Little Ones huff and puff. The Little Ones are not so sure about all this carrying business. Maybe they don't need all this stuff after all.

Wee Tiny has unpacked her bucket and spade.
The Little One doesn't need a big heavy stick now.
And Wee Small gets out Mr Giraffe and repacks it into my bag.

Off we go again.

The Little One asks if we are there yet.
Wee Tiny wants an apple.
Wee Small wants to go home.
Wee Tiny doesn't want an apple, what she meant was she wanted a peeled banana.
The Little One ask how much further.
Wee Small wants to go home.
Wee Tiny cries that she wanted to peel the banana herself.
The Smallest Of All has wandered off.
The Little One asks why we couldn't camp closer, like out the front of the house.
The Smallest Of All has wandered back.
Wee Tiny says she isn't hungry.
Wee Small wants to go home.
The Little One ask how much further.
I say it's just around the corner.
Everyone groans at me.

Off we go again.

Just around the corner we can see the ocean, the sand dunes, the wind swept scrub, and the forests huddling in the valleys. It is astoundingly beautiful. Wee Small wants to be carried.

Off we go again...

Sunday, March 22, 2009

little ones go camping: the night before

It is the night before the little ones will go camping. Wee Small has told Wee Tiny that "we're going camping today" everyday for the past two weeks. The Small One was shining her torch at everyone and everything until the batteries went flat. The Little One has already cut her thumb and we haven't got out the door yet.

Finally we packed everything we needed into little backpacks.

The Little One has packed a very large stick.
Wee Tiny is taking her bucket and spade.
And Wee Small has packed Mr. Giraffe.

It's late. We leave tomorrow. The little ones are not so much sleeping in their beds as jumping on them.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Stop Press!

The tummy mountain space-agency (TuMS) has successfully sent the first Little One to the Moon.

In a world first a very small person has managed to break through the snug atmosphere around the top of tummy mountain to venture forth amongst the stars.

News Establishments across the globe are reporting that this surprise visit made to the Moon by astronaut Wee Small is the cause of great celebrations amongst little people everywhere. Chocolate cake ingredients have sold out and there has even been a stampede for orange juice.



TuMS is continuing to develop even longer ladders for further missions into space.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

dinner time

I shout. I yell. I make a fool of myself, but the little ones just will not come in for dinner.

"Not yet" they yell back.

and:

"Just one last jump"

and:

"One more go"

and:

"We're not finished yet."



Their dinner goes cold.
By the time they do come in they do not eat it.
Repeat performance again tomorrow night but change recipe.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

homeward bound

Sometimes I have to leave the sanctuary of tummy mountain and go out into the other world...

As I return to tummy mountain nothing brings me more joy than the thought of the little ones, and what adventures they have been up to whilst I have been away. When walking around the last hill on my way back to tummy mountain I can always see them busy doing important things.

Today they have dug up the entire front garden looking for worms for a magic potion.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

a piece of tummy mountain: chapter 4

The big big painting continues, more of the details are starting to emerge.


Some reflections, some stepping stones


Some friends, some fairies, and even more grass


head in the clouds