Tuesday, 23 December 2014

The Magic Desk


It has been a very busy few days here at Betty's Cottage - the Red Fairy has been decorating with her 
favourite colour and Lolly and Buncle have been on high alert making sure that naughty fairies do not open any presents before  Christmas Day. Last night they had to grab this gift before the Cone Fairy peeked inside - so you see it is not only children who are tempted to do this !

 This morning all was usual at my desk with a few fairies rummaging around the pens and papers , wondering if I have been writing about them no doubt.

 Here we get in a little closer to see what is going on ...it looks a bit messy after all the Christmas card writing and all the long lists I have to make and I spied a few fairies not making it any tidier.

 The little tree fairy who Lolly and Buncle rescued from the Bauble Box flew on to the top to  see what was going on although strictly speaking she should be hanging on the tree by now - she looks so sweet that I can't bring myself to tell her off . One has to make allowances for the very young fairy.

Matilda however is not so young and is overly  fond of my sparkly pen. If it ever goes missing I  call her name and she brings it straight back to me . I have given her the task of keeping all my pens topped up with ink as she seems so taken with them.

 She sometimes asks Myrtle to help her tidy up  - they like looking in all the little cubby holes and are still looking for the secret compartment that I told them about (this of course makes it an even more magical desk and all visitors are invited to find it but so far nobody has - other than Auntie Everlasting of course ! )
  Having lots of special little momentos , photos and keepsakes all in one place will give off a very magical atmosphere and attract fairies to it for all you Fairy Spotters still hoping to catch sight of one and don't forget that if you don't see a fairy you are still experiencing the magic !

 My desk does seem to attract a lot of fairy attention and the Fairy Tale book on the top is a regular resting place for a fairy to sit and dream. This is the fairies favourite book and I often read it aloud to them on a Winter's night.

 Before I go Lolly and Buncle have reminded me that we took some photos last  night when all the fairies had settled down to show all you Fairy Followers where they will be sleeping tomorrow night ...

First they had to shift some things to make room for their beds ...

 and then they settled down by the candle with their stockings at the ready ( I had to sew on their initials so there were no mix ups or arguments ) and they always like a paper chain over them so that if it rustles they might make up and see Father Christmas ...

 But they always fall so fast asleep after all their fairy duties that they never do !

Love , Betty X

Sunday, 21 December 2014

The Tree is Dressed

Dear Fairy Followers,

As we get ever closer to Christmas the magic is mounting at Betty's Cottage.

This week Lolly and Buncle were very happy to get outside into the fresh air and bring in some greenery which with it's shiny piney smells, brings the magic of Mother Nature right in amongst us and as Auntie Everlasting likes to remind me , keeps any witches and passing lightening away from the house so we can all sleep easy in our beds too !

We have also sent out all our Christmas cards which makes us feel very pleased with ourselves as our job of spreading more magic out into the world is done ( Buncle is in charge of  the sprinkling of fairy dust goes into each one . )

 In with the greenery came a shiny brown Cone fairy and she scattered some of her woodland twinkle ...

 and then it was all hands to the dressing of the tree ...

 which of course brought in more passing fairies ... this Blue one got rather too close to the bird that pecked poor Lolly last time ...

 and this little Gold fairy was found frolicking amongst the branches and baubles quite unaware of any dangers that might lurk in a Christmas tree.

 ( The Blue Fairy was quite unharmed by the way. )

 The next job was to wake up the Tree -Top Fairy from her year's slumber in her very own box. It is a very important job to be a  Tree Fairy and not every fairy has the stamina for it.  Lots of these sleeping beauties live a long time as they get passed down the family and are cared for as a special fairy ( that many grown-ups remember as it is the best way of bringing back memories of their childhood Christmas's.) Eventually they retire when their dress and wings are so threadbare it is time for the family to replace them - always a Very Sad moment.

Our fairy has been with us for ten years now and still has a lot of go in her ...

 With only a little bit of a push she was soon into position ...

 and the whole tree was complete!

 Once she was warmed up by the fairy lights and quite awake she asked me to tell you that her name is
Queenie and she wishes you all a very Happy Christmas and not to prod or peek into any presents that might be under your own tree as any Tree - Top fairy will know immediately and it is prone to make them sneeze ... of course if you have a Star you will not be found out but I think it is much more fun to have a fairy keeping watch !

 So as evening fell we lit the candles ...

 Lolly and Buncle shared a mini mince pie ...

 and after the last currant was eaten they flew off to my desk and made plans to move their beds in there for Christmas Eve ( this is a Special Treat and only happens on this one night of the year so please call by  before Christmas and see them hang up their stockings where I write my books ! )

I do hope all your preparations are going well and that the magic is with you too !


Tuesday, 16 December 2014

The Box of Baubles

 Dear Fairy Followers,

Hoorah , at last it is time to dust off the baubles in readiness for the dressing of the tree ! Here at Betty's Cottage we are rather late in putting up our tree as it is the busiest time of the year for fairy business - there are so many wishes to grant and so much enchantment to spread around that we don't begin to sprinkle the magic here until the week before Christmas itself . Of course the fairies do beg me to bring out the decorations sooner but I am strict in this matter as I really don't want my fairies getting to too tired and excited and then napping for most of Christmas day.

 This morning  I let Lolly and Buncle into the box of baubles to make sure that all was in order. Although they were happy to get in with all the glitter and sparkle , I did hear some grumbling about how they were always being asked to dust and do the heavy work and so I reminded them that the reward for Bauble dusting was a Pink Fondant Chocolate - a treat indeed and one that I find no fairy ever refuses ... and so they set to work with a little more gusto.

Before too long I could hear them waking up their old friends ... Father Christmas just needed a little tweak to his beard ...

 and the Nutcracker man stood to attention again after a long year lying around in tissue paper.

 His friend soon  joined them and Buncle told Lolly how last year he had sneaked a kiss from her under the mistletoe !

 I reminded them there was no time for gossip with Christmas being only 8 days away and they set to work on the important task of Bauble Maintenance (checking for cracks and polishing to a high shine)
 when I noticed that Lolly was enjoying her work a bit too much ...

 as she gazed at herself on the shiny surface !

 Meanwhile Buncle squealed with delight as she found the tiny robin ...

 but then had to fly around the room to try and catch him again as he flew off for a bit of exercise .

 Lolly then found herself in a bit of bird trouble as the feather tailed  bird gave her a bit of a playful peck on her wings ...

 and Buncle had to sew a quick patch over the hole

SSSSSHHHH, don't tell them but this has given me an idea for their Christmas present - their wings have been looking a bit raggedy for a while now ...

 I think she did a good job although her stitches could have been neater - a Domestic fairy sews with invisible stitches but I had to remind myself that Lolly and Buncle are really Garden fairies and only come in to help round the house in the Winter.

 When they went back to the box they were most surprised to find a tiny tree fairy who had been trapped under an avalanche of baubles and was most happy to be rescued .

 She was feeling rather peckish after a year of living on crepe paper and looked rather longingly at the cupcake bauble ...

 In the spirit of Christmas ( and after much discussion ) Lolly and Buncle asked me for the promised  Pink Fondant Chocolate ( of which they were very fond )

 and gave it to the hungry little fairy.

 She felt instantly revived (and they found they had made a new friend for Christmas .)

Don't worry - I shall find another Fondant for the fairies and maybe some of their favourite Turkish Delight when the tree is dressed ! Come back soon to see what happens in the candlelight at betty's cottage as we creep nearer to Christmas day ...


Wednesday, 3 December 2014

The Very Important Guest

Dear Fairy Followers,
You find me in the Rosebud Room at Betty's Cottage making a quick inspection to make sure that all is spick and span and ready for a Very Important Guest or  a VIG as we like to call them ( and this one is also a VIF , a Very Important Fairy.)

All kinds of fairies fly in from all over the world and rest their heads under the Rosy  eiderdown , safe in the knowledge that there is always a sprig or two of Lavender to calm their nerves after a long flight  and a bowl of Pansy porridge for breakfast to send them on their way in the morning.

 Our last two guests had slept well and after they had signed the Visitors Book and flown off  I  received news that Auntie Everlasting was flying in that very same evening . Now all you Fairy Followers that have read my Betty Bib fairy books, The Fairy Year and Fairy Christmas will know that Auntie E is the oldest fairy that I know and is Very Wise Indeed.

She is  however also Very Fussy and everything must be  just to her liking or she gets rather crochety
and puts all the other fairies into a bit of a spin; so I put Lolly and Buncle straight to work on airing a sheet ( it was in fact a rather nice vintage lacy hanky ) it was clean but floppy so I sent them off to starch it and spray it with Lavender water.

I often have to ask Auntie about fairy history and I know that she thinks that fairy standards are slipping  and that things aren't like they were when she was a girl ( which was a VERY long time ago when humans actually believed in fairies a lot more than they do now)  so we always try and get things to a very high standard for her.

One thing that I know she is Most Particular about is her Lavender pillow so I sent Lolly
 and Buncle off to find the plumpest and freshest Lavender bag from the linen cupboard in the hope that all would be to Auntie Everlasting's satisfaction. The bow had to be tied with equal length on both sides as it is just this kind of thing that Auntie notices and the Lavender itself had to be this season's English Lavender ( I know she approves of fresh French bread but NOT French Lavender , I think she crash-landed in a field of the stuff once and has taken against it ever since.)

 We all held our breaths as Auntie arrived through the little window by the Bay tree ...she had no luggage with her so we knew it would be an overnight stay only and I think I heard very tiny sighs of relief from behind me !

 She flew straight to the bedside table that she usually sleeps in - we had lined it with Rose scented paper  but after some time inspecting it's dimensions she felt her old bones were too fragile to lay down in such a draughty  drawer and that the scent of Roses made her sneeze so something else would have to be arranged.

  I was most relieved when Lolly suggested the hatbox might be a better resting place and after much huffing and puffing and pushing and shoving it into the right place on the bed ( it couldn't be too near the door in case it creaked and it had to be at the right angle for sunrise in the morning and of course it had to face due East )  she decided it might be snug enough for a night's sleep - even with her old bones she is still very nimble and she jumped into the hatbox with a single leap.

 As I brought  up her cocoa I noticed  she had got Lolly and Buncle to move her bed nearer to the vase of Lavender and after asking for Chamomile Tea instead of the cocoa she finally settled down under her hanky , muttering something about "a little bit too much starch for my stiff legs. " But we pretended not to hear and  tiptoeing away I could hear  her snoring before I reached the bottom of the stairs.

 The next morning Auntie Everlasting was Up With the Lark and seemed to have a real spring in her step as she talked of old times with Ambrose the bear and she even admired the seat cover Buncle had crocheted. She declined her bowl of Pansy porridge , saying that she never eats until she has flown thirty laps round a chimney pot ...she admitted that she hadn't slept so well in a long time and thanked the fairies for making her so comfortable with a perfect pillow which was of the highest fairy order.

 And so with a parting of the lace curtain we waved her goodbye and told her to come again soon .

It was only when she was  high above the clouds that Lolly confessed that she had added some French Lavender flowers to her night time drink  AND to her pillow which had sent her off to sleep so soundly! I decided not to tick Lolly off as modern fairies must move with the times and use their initiative and I also decided never to tell Auntie everlasting about just how close she had come to French Lavender...

 And yet again my poor fairies end the story  in need of a rest from all their exertions ... I think I shall let them sleep before they must strip Auntie's bed and make the room ready for the next VIG who flies in.

Next time we prepare for Christmas - hoorah !
Happy Fairy Spotting ,
LOVE , Betty x