More Sketches and More Stoat Story

Patches getting a bird’s eye view of the mornings here at the house.

The past four days of drawings a day.

This graceful looking

pine cone had danced its way down

onto the forest floor.


A hurried drawing

Need to finish before the

cleaning lady comes.


The mountain laurel

is such a welcome bursting

of Spring’s arrival.


Such a delicate

small lily of the valley

has a nice sweetness.


And now back to the Stoat Story book. I am still not sure what to title it exactly, but have an idea.

Yesterday while I had four hours uninterrupted time, I finished the story. I laid out all the twenty pages to just the right size in a nice font that I can print in a charcoal grey. Then I will cut them to fit onto a slightly larger harder stock paper that will support a text page glued to each side. Each of those will slide out of the bottom of the openings of ten different places and be close to the images that go with the text. I really do like all the engineering of this kind of thinking. Making the covers for each end is also a new challenge. The front cover will have to have the title of the book and my name as there is no place else within the book itself. And the other end cover for the concertina story will have to have a directional sign that fits into the travels of the old woman and the stoat that lets the reader know to turn the book and keep going.

So here we go with more of the story.


“Did you ever wonder why the fox left you so many years ago?”

The memory and that feeling of being left behind caused the tiniest of tears to spill onto her cheek. She looked over the toast in her hand, into the stoat’s eyes and slowly nodded. Why didn’t he wait for her?

“He was young and in a hurry. He believed all youthful beings shared his eager anticipation of what comes next. But he did glance back. Only once and saw you there, holding your little bag and calling after him.”

“The fox thought he would be back some day to get you, but time happened.”

“I told the fox I would find you, and here we are.”

After breakfast the old woman was tired and asked if she could have a nap before continuing on.

“Yes, we can stay here a while longer.” And the stoat smiled as he watched over her.

Dreams and memories floated before her closed eyes. She could not tell one from the other. Each image moved past as if they were in a slow parade. And every one of them was beautiful to watch. It was almost as if they knew she was looking at them and they took their turns holding still until her eyes moved on to the next.

After some time, the stoat gently woke her.

The old woman was told that she would have to climb into a boat for the next part of their journey. She worried that it would be hard to keep her balance.

But it wasn’t as hard as she thought it would be. For a time, she even took the oars so as to give the stoat a rest.


When they reached the other shore and secured the boat, the stoat disappeared through the bushes.

This did not worry the old woman. She knew he would not leave her for long. And chose to wait on a log nearby for his return.

She had no idea where they were going and why. The old woman trusted the stoat and with his company and encouragement, she felt a lightness. The trip became easier with every step.

And sure enough, it was not long and the stoat returned carrying a basket…a sort of magic basket.

“This will hold the things you may need for the rest of our journey. Just ask politely before you open it.”


I have not filled in that last page with more drawings, but I will. It is this page that the back cover will be attached. And are you following along with the alphabetical words? I really do love the snail that the old woman has appeared to tie the boat up to. And I suppose it really is better to see the whole length at one time. It would be hard to clearly see the things on the pages if I was to try it, but maybe I will when it is completed.

The only thing left to do now is fill in all the back side of the book with more images that go with the story as they travel along. I think I will be sorry to come to the end of the project.

While I have a few minutes and Lee is outside, I will try to print the story pages.

Til later.