Friday, August 10, 2012

Ellie and the Magic Teapot Into the Secret Forest: August Blog 2- Letters from Mom & Mimi

Dear Ellie,

Our family and friends from back east are missing you terribly so let’s just reflect in photos a few of our fun moments from this summer.

And now here is our yearlong bedtime story/stories (with many chapters to write!) for you. 

So as for our weekly guidelines: I write a piece one week in regular font, then your Mimi has to will write a piece in italics the next week.  We decided to divide up our parts each week for a few reasons.  First, the feedback from our beloved readers thought that our blog was too long with far too much to process with both of our pieces.  Second, your Mimi and I were stressing so much about the time we put into our weekly chapters- it consumed us (as we fell in love with the characters, the more hours we would pour into it).  So unless writing our books becomes a full time job, we need to step back just a bit without taking away from the quality of our words.  In this way, your Mimi and I have the responsibility for adding every other week (and I’m sure both of us will agree we will still write each day but under far less pressure). 

The only things your Mimi and I agreed on were the characters- Ellie and a magic teapot and the setting (a forest with trolls).  Anything else is fair game and will make our adventure a new tale.  We also need to figure out an illustration to go with our part.  Our goal Ellie is to have a beloved bedtime story for you and future generations.   

And so we will continue our third piece of fiction. 

Ellie and the Magic Teapot: Into the Secret Forest Part 2

“Oh my Lion!  Are you thinking what I am thinking?” she asked while drinking in their surrounding.

“Ummmm…. Yep.  That is if you are thinking that we have somehow ended up in the storybook El,” he replied with a bit of apprehension.

“That’s exactly what I’m thinking!  How cool is it that our magical teapot set us down right at the beginning of the path that leads into the Secret Forest!” Ellie continued, her excitement building.  “Lion maybe it is US, you and me, who can free the children from that wicked old woman who snatches them up.”

“Yeah, maybe El.  But I think you are forgetting a big part of the story,” he stated.

“Oh?  Like what?” she answered blankly.

“Ahhhh… the Trolls?”  Lion responded while chewing one of his claws down to the quick. 

“OH.  Those.  Hmmmmm.  Well, we’ll just have to figure out what to do with them as we come upon them.  I’m sure they have no idea that you and I have read their book many times over.  So what we need to do is try to be one thought ahead of them.  I don’t think Trolls are very smart Lion, so maybe that will be to our advantage,” Ellie said not totally convincing.

Lion shook his head while fretting.  “I don’t know about this adventure El.” 

Ellie grinned and grabbed his hand, “Come on!”  Hooking Lion’s arm underneath her own and securing it close to her body helped ease his fears some.  Hers too.  Then together they walked along the flowery dirt path quickly at first and slowing their pace down a bit as the forest came into sight.  Strolling up to its edge, Ellie and Lion came to a complete halt in front of the big brown crooked sign with the large black-crayoned letters.  Looking first at each other and then back at the sign they read it out loud together.  “THE TROLLS SECRET FOREST… tresspassers welcome… enter at your own risk as you will not be returning!!”  Lion’s eyes widened!  And so did Ellie’s!  Taking a deep breath she hugged Lion’s arm a little bit tighter while entwining her fingers tightly around his and without a word they slipped into the deep dark forest.

“Whoa Ellie.  I-i-i-i-it’s really d-d-d-dark in here!” stuttered Lion.

“Not to worry,” she soothed.  “You should know by now that I always make sure to wear an outfit with plenty of pockets, and I always make sure my pockets are filled with cool and useful stuff!  Now let me see.” 

Ellie was wearing her favorite pj’s, the lime green and magenta fairy princess set.  Its ruffled top had a button pocket on each sleeve as well as two snap pockets right above the front side hem.  And the bell-bottom pants had a deep row of hidden pockets encircling its waistband.  It was one of those pockets that Ellie fished around in. 

“Ahhhh… here’s what I was looking for,” she called out triumphantly as she pulled out a battery operated votive candle.  Turning it upside down, she found and flicked the operating switch to the on position giving Lion and herself just enough light to continue on their journey while walking deeper into The Secret Forest.

“Whooooo, whooooo.  Whoooooo goes there?” screeched something scary high above them.  “Riddit, riddit.  Are you friend, or troll?” croaked something scary below them.  “Sssssssss.  Sssssss.  State your names!” hissed something scary somewhere in between. 

Lion trembled in fear while Ellie waved the votive candle all around trying to see what scary creatures were calling out to them.  As she swung it above her head she yelled out, “Ahhhh Lion, look.  It is a beautiful white owl perched in the evergreen tree!” 

“My name’s Oliver missy!” the white owl screeched.

Then she swung the votive candle very low near her feet and yelled out again, “Ahhhh Lion, look.  It is a chubby old toad sitting on the moss covered root of the evergreen tree!” 

“My name’s Theodore missy, but you can call me Tad,” the toad croaked.

Lastly, she swung the votive candle straight out in front of her first swinging it to the left and then to the right.  And she yelled out one more time, “Ahhhh Lion, look.  It is a silky green snake coiled around the trunk of the same tree!”

“My name’s Sebastian missy and don’t you forget it!” hissed the snake.

“Oh my… we certainly won’t Sebastian,“ Ellie promised.   “Let me make our introductions.  My name is Ellie and this here is Lion,” she said as she pointed to her very furry and not so brave best friend.  “Oh, and we are NOT trolls.  We are friends to The Secret Forest.”

“Riddit, riddit… well that is a relief.” Tad sighed.  “This forest has way too many trolls already, thanks to Trudy,” he added.

Lion beat Ellie to asking the question first.  “Who’s Trudy?”

“Ssssssss she’s the troll in charge,” Sebastian answered.  “Trudy is old and mean.  When children come into the forest to play, Trudy has them captured and she turns them into more trolls.   She needs to be stopped but no one knows how to stop her.”

“Ooooooooo. We know her from the storybook as just a mean old lady who captures children.  That must be her disguise,” deducted Lion.  “This new information is good for us to know,” he reasoned.

Oliver Owl chimed in.  “No one has outsmarted her yet because she is very, very clever.  She has placed her troll army (I think there are seven as we speak) throughout the forest in tricky hiding sssssss..spots.  Once you are captured the troll blindfolds your eyes, ssssss…spins you around 5 times so you don’t know what direction you are going and then leads you to Trudy’s cave… which we the forest animals have no idea where it is hidden.”

“However… riddit, riddit… if you two are brave enough to find and stop her, we three will help you in anyway we can,” uttered Tad.  “Oliver can guide you from above should you find yourselves in riddit, riddit…trouble, I can guide you at ground level and Sebastian can guide you at eye level if need be.  All you have to do is whisper our animal sound and we will appear…riddit, riddit.  Just remember, DON’T GET CAUGHT!”

Ellie contemplated this idea and with a firm nod in Lion’s direction agreed to it.  “Sounds like a plan forest friends.  Let’s do it!”  Grabbing Lion’s hand once again, Ellie led him further into The Secret Forest in search of finding Trudy the Troll….

We love you to the moon and back Ellie!
Mom & Mimi

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