Thursday, 9 February 2017

Livvy and Max

I recently received Max Bramble, and the little guy was so cute I just had to use him in my first story. I also updated Livvy and Max's biographies on my family page.

Max Bramble has been living in Sugarbush Valley for almost two weeks now and he can honestly say that he was enjoying every moment of it. He loved the fact that he and his mother lived in a tent. "How cool was it to be permanently camping." This morning Max was feeling especially happy and proud. He wanted to surprise his mother with coffee and porridge in bed... and he managed to make a fire all by himself.

As he was about to pour the maize into the pot, he noticed someone approaching, a beautiful cat lady.

"Good morning, you must be Max?" the cat lady said. Max was astonished that she new his name, "Yes, that is me, but how did you know my name?" Cecilia smiled, "I'm sorry, I'm Cecilia Teak, a good friend of your mother's and she has talked about you so many times, and how excited she was to have you finally come and live with her."

"Oh, you are THAT cat lady!" as soon as he spoken the words, Max turned scarlet red and in the hope to cover up his boldness, he quickly asked, "I'm making porridge for my mom, would you like some?" The mere idea, send the bile rising up Cecilia's throat immediately, but then she felt instantly ashamed. 'Am I too good for porridge, is this what I have become', she thought to herself..."Of course I want some porridge, I would love to taste it." she redeemed herself.

"Cecilia! Good morning! What are you doing here?" Livvy was awaken by the voices outside and decided to investigate. "Good morning, Livvy. I had the pleasure to meet your boy and he is making por...! Oh sorry, I almost spoiled the surprise, go on Max ..."

"Morning mommy, I making coffee and porridge for breakfast. I managed to make a fire on my own, and Miss Cecilia here said she wanted to join us." Max rambled.

"Oh Max, well done, I'm so proud of you and thanks for making breakfast." Livvy hugged her boy, feeling extremely happy and content.

While Max finished the porridge, Cecilia and Livvy caught up. Livvy told her all about Max's arrival and apologised for not visiting with her sooner. "That is fine, I understand completely, you two needed to settle in and get used to each other. How is that going? Cecilia inquired.

"Cecilia it is so great to have him with me. Though I have not much, I have my boy and that is all that I ever wanted." Livvy sad brightly.

After breakfast Livvy indicated that she needed to go into the village, first to inquire about a place for Max at the school and then she need to go to the Supermarket, "I didn't realise that a six year old can eat this much." she giggled. Cecilia indicated that she will accompany them, she couldn't help but notice the brown shopping bag that Livvy used as her purse.

Cecilia kept her distance while Livvy went up to talk to Mr Chiffon. Livvy felt quite nervous and wondered if she would be up to home schooling if they don't have a spot for Max. "Good morning, Mr Chiffon, I'm Livvy and this here is my son Max, I was wondering if you have a minute or two for me?" Livvy greeted.

"Good morning, of course. Hey Max. How can I help you, Livvy?" Gordon was his friendly inviting self and Livvy found it easy to talk to him.

She quickly explained her problem to Gordon, and without hesitation he confirmed that there is indeed a spot for Max and that he can start the next day, "The sooner, the better, you know!" he winked at Livvy. The relief washed over Livvy, she thanked Gordon for his kindness and promised to see him again the following day.

While Livvy and Cecilia decided where to go next, Max was hit by a something, it turned out to be a soccer ball. "Hey!" Max yelled in surprise.

"It's my ball! Sorry for hitting you. I never have someone to play with, and sometimes when I kick it back to myself, I'm not quick enough!" the little mole boy explained.

"That is ok, I will play with you. I'm Max." Max introduced himself. "Really you will? That will be great! I'm Muddy by the way, see you tomorrow!" and the little mole boy disappeared just as quickly as he appeared.

After the stop at the school, the threesome headed for the village center where the Supermarket was situated. On their way they passed the Boutique. "Livvy, let's go in here, I love staring at the exquisite items they sell." Cecilia suggested.

"Are you serious, I don't belong in a shop like that, remember I'm a common Gypsy." Livvy replied shakily. "Oh nonsense, and the proprietors of the shop, the Hunter-Smyths, are not snobbish. They love all customers." Cecilia explained.

Max decided to wait outside while his mother and her friend went inside. Livvy surely felt out of place and regretted letting Cecilia talk her into coming in. "Good morning Cecilia!" A friendly looking dog greeted them. "And I see you brought a friend, wonderful! I love new customers." Charles clapped happily. Marqaux Bercher was also shopping for something pretty and greeted Livvy and Cecilia too, "Good morning ladies, enjoy the shopping, Charles has some wonderful items."

"Yes Charles, this is my friend Livvy and we are here to buy her a handbag!" Cecilia winked. "Wait! What?" Livvy exclaimed, totally confused.

Charles instinctively realised that he needed to give the two friends a minute and moved away. "Cecilia what do you mean? I barely have money for food, how can you expect me to buy a handbag?" Livvy was furious. "Oh calm down," Cecilia interrupted, "I will pay, I want to spoil you and I think a handbag is the perfect gift." Livvy turned red and Cecilia was unsure if it was due to anger or shyness. "Livvy, listen, you have been my rock these last few months, I know you don't realise it, but without you I would have had a hard time adjusting in this village, and the talks about the passing of my son, you gave me hope again, please, P L E A S E, let me do something for you now." Cecilia was desperate for Livvy to understand.

Still not being 100% convinced and still feeling a bit angry by being tricked, Livvy turned to the shelf with handbags. They were quite exquisite and she wont mind owning one.

"Found anything ladies?" Charles ventured over. "I don't know. Cecilia, what do you think of that one." and Livvy pointed at a bag with green trimmings and flower embellishments, hoping it was the cheapest one in the shop.

Charles quickly took it down from the shelf, "This one? I think it will suit you perfectly, Miss Livvy. Do you agree Cecilia?"  Cecilia looked at the bag and then at Livvy, as if she was trying to pair the two. "Yes! Perfect!" she yelled as she clapped her hands.

The ladies left the shop, after thanking Charles for his help. "Thank you, Cecilia, for this surprise, but it really wasn't necessary. I helped you through your grief because I wanted to, not because I wanted something in return." Livvy said. "I know that, my friend, but after everything you went through you also needed to be spoiled, so please enjoy your handbag and don't mention it again." Livvy nodded and the two friend said their goodbyes.

Just outside the Supermarket Livvy bumped into Shirley Darwin. "Hello Livvy, and this must be Max. Welcome to the village Max." Shirley greeted friendly. "Oh and a what a lovely handbag you have!" Shirley exclaimed. "Thank you Shirley, how are you doing?" The two ladies chatted some more before they went their separate ways. Livvy desperately wanted to do her shopping at the Supermarket now.

"Thanks for coming Livvy and do call me if you need any more advise on how to keep that boy's tummy full." Wilbur laughed as he waved Livvy off. "Thank you Wilbur, Fliss, always a pleasure to shop at the Supermarket." Livvy was relieved that the shopping was finally done. Now she just wanted to go home.

As they arrived at the campsite, that they called home, a peacefulness washed over Livvy. She has a home, even though some might disagree, her son is finally with her, they have food to eat and she made a friend that she can trust and looks beyond her eccentricity. Life is good.

Thursday, 26 January 2017

Sylvanian Surprises

Last week was a great Sylvanian week! I got two surprises through the post. One was totally unexpected, and with the second one, though I was expecting some of the items, some of it was a huge surprise.

The first one came on Thursday, 19 January. It was a Christmas card from darling Christine all the way from Australia. At first I was amazed by the stamp, sorry but I can go quite geeky about stamps and things related to foreign countries. I was upset though... as the lovely customs people opened it, heaven knows why.

Inside was a wonderful card, some stickers, Christmas tree cuts outs and a fantastic knitted dress and hat for one lucky Sylvanian lady. Thank you so much Christine I really appreciate this gesture.

Then on Monday, 23 January the expected trade parcel van Kyraja finally arrived. And I was amazed that this time it was not opened by customs, and the custom fee was so low, it was laughable.

So what was inside? Well take a look, many many cool expected things, and even cooler unexpected surprises.

The patio set was part of the trade, but Kyraja surprised me with some planters/pots for Christmas, ideal for flowers. These three ladies are very excited, as they need some decorating items for their houses.

Another surprise was this lovely teaset! I'm over the moon, I've been eyeing it for so long on ebay and SSK, but it was just always to expensive, if you calculate the postage with it.

Max Bramble also finally arrived in Sugarbush. 

Livvy was ecstatic to finally have her son with her again (isn't he just the cutest thing!)

Then after the sadness of 4 families departing from Sugarbush, it is with much anticipation that I can announce that a new family will be moving to the Village soon. (the twins was part of the trade and the father was my Christmas gift)

I'm still undecided about the names (be sure that it WILL NOT BE 'Cakebread'), but in the mean time dad and the twins will find suitable housing, and hopefully the mother and 3 other siblings will join the family shortly.

Finally I also received this awesome playmobil set! It is my first one and I can't wait for my son and I to set it up (he will enjoy doing it, so I'm waiting for the right time so we can do it together). I'm thinking of giving the fresh produce stand to Bob Blackberry, he will be so happy to finally have a real shop for his fruit and vegetables.

Thank you Kyraja for this wonderful parcel and the opportunity to trade with you. It is always fun, and I'm already compiling my list for the next one.

Thursday, 19 January 2017

Renard's house


So after the Puddlefords left Sugarbush Valley, the Renards were lucky enough to get a house of their own. 

Eric was the only person Nelson ever considered selling their beloved cottage to and the decision was easy for Eric. Luckily he and Roxy had savings 'for a rainy day'. They bought the house furnished, which was a good thing as they had no money left for new furniture or redecorating. 

Let's take a look (I have to apologise for the poor quality of some of the pictures)

The happy family in front of their new house

Full view of the cottage

Bottom floor: Living area and kitchen

Eric's favorite chair had to find a place

The kitchen: Roxy is over the moon to finally have her own kitchen

Top floor: Bedroom

Baden loves his cosy alcove

Parents bed

The Renards are extremely happy to be finally living in their own cottage

Then on a different note

I'm extremely happy to announce that I finally bought the Houseboat! It was my gift to myself for my birthday. I haven't really had time to furnish it or play with it, but wanted to take a quick picture. Ben is ecstatic that his dream of finally owning a boat came true.

With the Houseboat I received another Freya (on the right with the shell detail on her dress). I now have three 'Freyas' in my village, although original Freya will be the only Chocolate. Music room Freya and Houseboat Freya, will be exchange students living in the village. They are twins, with the surname Hopscotch (I know very original) and first names Piper and Clarine. 

Keep posted for more updates and new items soon. Enjoy the weekend!

Monday, 16 January 2017

Cassandra's (sad) day

Herewith my first story for 2017. I cheated a bit as the photos were already taken in Dec 2016, but does that really matter. Happy reading!

It was another lovely day in Sugarbush Valley, and what made it even more lovely, was the fact that it was Cassandra's day 'off'. Once a week the children walk to and from school on their own, which gives Cassandra a few precious hours to do her own thing.

"Have a nice day children, and remember to drop off Skimble first!" she yelled after them. She could imagine the eye rolls from her two older children Mistoffeless and Grizabella, as if they will ever forget about Skimble.

"What will I do today?" Cassandra wondered out loudly. There were always a few things she had to do, but she always tried to make time to go into the village and meet up with some of the villagers. Having good relationships with everyone were very important to Cassandra.

Today she decided to treat herself to tea and cake at her friend, Pippa's cake shop. And just maybe she will meet someone to chat to there.

"Good morning, Cassandra!" Pippa greeted friendly. "I haven't seen you in a long time, the children keeping you busy?" Cassandra smiled, "Yes they do, between home work, after school activities and the house building, things have been hectic. But I'm happy to say that the house is finally finished and now we can start decorating and everyone can settle into their own spot. It was quite hard to live, eat and sleep in one room." Pippa listened with interest, "That is a relief! We do have some big changes coming with regards to our living arrangements as well, but I don't want to get ahead of myself." 

After some more chatting, Cassandra found a table and ordered a pot of tea. She was glad to see Cecilia Teak entering the shop. Though they have met, they haven't had a chance to chat and she would love to learn more about Cecilia. "Good morning Cecilia, do come and join me." Cassandra waved Cecilia over.

Cecilia was happy to join Cassandra, she was still new in Sugarbush Valley, and though the villagers were very friendly, it was still hard to make friends.

"Good morning, Cecilia." Pippa greeted friendly. "I hope you don't mind, but I brought you a cup for tea as well, or should I rather get you something else? Cecilia smiled, "I would love some tea, thank you."

"So how are things with you and your family, still happy about your decision to move to Sugarbush?" Cassandra inquired. "Oh yes, everyone is so friendly and helpful, we love it here." Cecilia replied. "And how are you finding Commune living?" Cassandra continued. Cecilia blushed a scarlet red, "I must admit, that is a bit hard, we like to keep to ourselves, and sharing a bathroom and kitchen is a bit of a challenge, but everyone's helpfulness make up for that."

"Oh I can understand that, but I love the idea of the Commune providing alternative housing for the villagers waiting for houses." Cassandra explained. "I agree." Cecilia smiled. "Good morning Mrs Macavity, good morning Mrs Teak." It was the Blackberry twins, Yvette and Ingrid. "Good morning Ingrid, Yvette? Isn't it too early for cake?" Cassandra inquired. The twins blushed scarlet red but explained that it is Mr Huckleberry's birthday and they wanted to surprise him with a treat.

The twins hurried off, realising that they were already very late for school. While Cassandra and Cecilia finished their tea.

"Thank you for the company, Cecilia. Have a good day and good luck with the house hunting." Cassandra greeted. "No, thank you, for inviting me. It was lovely to have a quick chat with you." Cecilia said thankfully.

On her way out, Cassandra met Willow Thistlethorn. "Good morning, Willow! How are you?" Willow greeted Cassandra with a huge smile, "I'm good, thank you Cassandra." The two ladies talked a while about the latest happenings in the little village. It was then that Willow told Cassandra ...

"Have you heard that Nelson and Beth have moved to away?" Cassandra couldn't believe it. She knew that Nelson wasn't very happy with all the changes in Sugarbush, but to move away was a bit drastic. "What? No! That is awful, he was such a huge institution in our little village." Cassandra quickly greeted Willow and immediately went to the little Bramble cottage on the outskirts of the village, she had to see for herself.

But Willow didn't lie and the rumour was true, because as Cassandra came up to the cottage she could see the Renards outside, and it looked like they were moving in.

"Cassandra! What brings you by?" Roxy Renard noticed Cassandra approaching, and greeted her friendly. "Hey Roxy, I hope I'm not intruding, but I've just heard the news that Beth and Nelson moved and I just didn't want to believe it." Cassandra explained.

Eric climbed down form the ladder and greeted Cassandra too, "Yes, they've been planning it for a while now, but kept it a secret. Kenneth approached us first to buy the house, apparently Nelson wanted it that way. I think this was also the last house that Kenneth sold as realtor of Sugarbush." Eric clarified. All this information was just too much for Cassandra, and then she realised what Eric just said, "Wait..." she was very confused, "does that mean the Furbanks has left the village too." Cassandra didn't wait for a reply, she just greeted the Renards, and walked off, feeling miserable.

Cassandra wondered to the park, and found a bench. "What is going on in our village, why is so many villagers moving away, I thought we were such a happy village."

Her thoughts were interrupted, by Kelly Basset. "Hey Cassandra, why so depressed, are you ok?" he asked. "Oh Kelly, I've just heard that the Puddlefords and the Furbanks left our little village, and I'm just depressed, because something must be wrong!" Kelly realised she was upset and tried to explain, "On no Cassandra, don't think that! You know Nelson, lately he hasn't been happy, but only because he doesn't like change, but I've heard that they are very happy in Sweet Berry Valley. The Furbanks story is not such a happy one, but again it has nothing to do with the village or the villagers behavior." 

"But then I need to tell you that the Hazelwoods also left this morning on the bus. Their idea of an Orphanage just never worked in Sugarbush, and the residents of the old age home, is so self sufficient that they don't want any carers. They are moving to Marygold Creek, and believe you me they will be very happy there!" Cassandra felt a little bit better after talking to Kelly, but she still decided to walk over to Tourist & Realtor office.

Outside the office she met Rosemary Bouquet. "Cassandra? Are you ok, you are as white as a sheet?" Rosemary was quite surprised by Cassandra's expression. "Oh Rosemary, I'm just so upset, why have Kenneth and Emma moved away, without saying goodbye even, and all the others." Rosemary immediately understood, "Cassandra, their has been complications, with the adoption of Alfie and the fostering of Alyssa, some procedures weren't followed, and they went to try and sort that out." 

Herbage heard the two ladies talking and decided to try and calm Cassandra down, with the correct information. Rosemary was relieved, and quickly scrambled off, she too was somewhat upset. "You shouldn't worry too much Cassandra; Kenneth, Emma and the children are fine and happy. They just need to sort out a few things. Please don't worry about them. And before you heard further upsetting news, Durwood and Pansy also left the village yesterday, but to me they were never permanent villagers. Cassandra nodded, that was true, but she still felt depressed and slowly made her way home.

When she arrived home she found Alonzo putting some finishing touches on the house, and she was surprised to find the children already back from school.

"Cassandra, you are back, how was your morning." Alonzo seemed truly happy to see her. "Sweety are you okay?" he asked

"I guess, I'm just a bit upset about everyone that is leaving Sugarbush. It feels so personal, as if I did something wrong. Maybe I should've tried harder to be friends with them." she explained.

"Nonsense my dear, you are great, caring and a very good friend to everyone, you couldn't have done more. Things happen in life, and other's decisions are based on that, they do what are best for them, but I'm sure they appreciate your concern. Why don't you make contact with them, inquire if they are ok, and then keep contact with them, that way they will know how much you care." Alonzo suggested while hugging his wife"

"Alonzo, that is the best idea I've heard all day, thank you honey, for caring so much. Let's go inside, I need some tea." Cassandra replied happily.