Wednesday, December 25, 2019

Holyster's gifts

Hello and Happy Holidays everyone!

The challenge prompt for the
second fortnight of December (and the very last one of the year!) in the Sylvanian Families Collectors Community was:

Challenge #24: Free Challenge

We've arrived at the end of 2019, and the last Free Challenge of the year! Thank you all for a year full of fabulous crafts, beautiful photos, and immersive storytelling! You have made the creative challenges an amazing success. There is lots more to come in 2020! The first challenge of the new year will be posted on 1 January.

This is a chance for everyone to work on a Sylvanian project of their choosing. Choose a prompt that you would enjoy taking on, expand upon a project that you've already created, or try a new technique or material!

Make an item or items, photograph a scene, write a story, or do whatever inspires you to do something creative with your Sylvanian collection!

With this post, I am happy to say that I managed to participate in each and every challenge of this year, 2019! I wanted to try and accomplish that, so I'm very happy about it! :) Not sure if I will be able to do it again next year, but I have to say that I truly enjoyed these challenges, that inspired me to try and do different things with my Sylvanians. I even did a little crafting, which I'm not very good at! So thank you very much to Terra, the rest of the forum admins, and of course, the person who originally proposed to do these challenges last year, Kaz.

For this free challenge I wanted to illustrate some of the gifts the Sylvanians from Arcfield received from Holyster, the gift-giving, shape-shifting forest spirit!

Here we have Frances Robinson, admiring the beautiful new paint box she got! With this, she'll be able to draw and paint even more beautiful pictures. 

The Spinelli children, Livia and Silvio, received a beautiful toy box full of toys to share!

It's not only the children that Holyster brings gifts to; see, Mr Waters got a brand new tool box full of shiny new tools to use in carpintry!

Some of you were worried about Freya Chocolate, since Holyster told her that she might not get any gifts this year. To be honest, she's been worrying about that too. And today, it seems like her fears have unfortunately become true; her brother Coco (who seems quite happy with his new toy blimp) and her baby siblings have received gifts, but she can't find one for herself anywhere in the house.

And it's not that she hasn't been looking! Could it be true that she's not getting any presents this year?

I wonder why she can't find anything...? :D

Exhausted and frustrated, Freya finally decides to get out of the house to clear her head.

"Where are you going, love?" Teri, her mother, calls sweetly to her as she's about to leave. Freya looks at her, her eyes glistening with tears, and replies curtly:
"To take a walk".
"Could it be that you're upset because Holyster didn't bring you any gifts?" 
Teri's smiling sweetly at her, and that just makes Freya even angrier.
"Of course not! Who needs gifts, anyway?!"

Teri smiles even wider. It's been a while since she's had this much fun teasing someone, but still, Freya is her darling daughter and she seems upset, so in the end she decides to finally show her the present she's been hiding and moving from spot to spot all morning, and that she had been hiding behind her back as they talked.

"Gotcha!" she says, winking at her daughter. "Hope this whole thing made you think a bit, at least!"

Freya is speechless. Did her mother really just play a prank at her?!

All's well that ends well, though, and Freya's quite happy with her brand new teddy bear! She hopes you all get tons of gifts these holidays, too!

This will quite probably be my last post of the year, so Happy Holidays and Happy New Year, everyone! See you in January! 

Monday, December 16, 2019

Winter Solstice Dinner

Hello everyone!

The challenge prompt for the
first fortnight of December in the Sylvanian Families Collectors Community was:

Challenge #23: Christmas Dinner

The month of December is all about the upcoming Christmas holiday! Both in the real world and the Sylvanian world, a highlight of each year is Christmas Dinner, with family, friends, and a wonderful feast.

There are many ways to celebrate the season! Show us what Christmas Dinner is like for your figures, whether your Sylvanians prefer a classic Christmas menu, look forward to unique local or family favorites, have a large gathering, celebrate in smaller numbers, create a massive feast or enjoy a more modest meal.

Make an item or items, photograph a scene, write a story, or do whatever inspires you to do something creative around the Christmas Dinner theme or Christmas in general! If your Sylvanians celebrate a different winter holiday, please feel free to share that celebration instead. 


As you already know if you read my previous story, the Sylvanians in Arcfield don't celebrate Christmas per se. They celebrate the coming of Winter on the night of the Winter solstice, during which the friendly forest spirit Holyster comes to bring gifts to them. On that night, families and friends assemble to enjoy a special dinner and spend quality time together. Sometimes these celebrations can get huge, as Sylvanians tend to have big families and many dear friends.

The family we'll be visiting this time, however, is a small one; the Andes family, consisting of father Rick, mother Ariadna, daughter Fiorella and baby son Óscar. They're going to spend a quiet family night enjoying each other's company. 

Here's the family decorating their tree for the season. The ornaments are very special, as their dear friends from Riverside sent them!  
(Thank you so much, Nina!).

While Rick gives the finishing touches to dinner, Ariadna and her daughter Fiorella work on setting the table. They're using the tablecloth and crockery reserved for special occasions! The crockery has flowers, of course; Ariadna loves them! Since Fiorella's quite short, she needs to get up on the chair to set the table. She hopes to get taller soon!

It's finally time for the family to enjoy dinner together! Everything is delicious, and Fiorella's delighted, as her parents have prepared all of her favourite dishes. They dote on her so much! She's positive there'll be pudding for dessert, too!
Even little Óscar's having his bottle at the table with the family. :)

After dinner, in the quietness of their home, Fiorella sings traditional songs for her parents and baby brother. Even though she does it completely a cappella, her voice is so beautiful and crystalline that it almost sounds like there are musical instruments accompanying her. Immensely proud of her daughter, Ariadna closes her eyes, smiles and lets Fiorella's voice carry her elsewhere, very far away.

(Thank you Emilie for the adorable printable!).

A bit later, when the children are already in bed, Ariadna and Rick finally have the time to enjoy a glass of wine together. 
Rick Andes sighs contently and smiles adoringly at his wife.
"Are you happy, my dearest?"
"I am" replies Ariadna, also smiling, her eyes twinkling slightly in the dim light. "I couldn't be happier, my love".


Hope you enjoyed these pictures of this nice, special evening at the Andes' home. :) I tried my best to capture a quiet, cozy and Christmassy atmosphere. 
I wish you all a wonderful month of December!


Friday, December 6, 2019

The festive forest spirit

Hello everyone!

I'm once again quite late, but here was the second challenge for the month of November in the SF Collectors Community forums:

Challenge #22: Christmas Wish List

Is November too early to begin thinking of Christmas? Not in Sylvania! Throughout the village, Sylvanians are already beginning to prepare for the festivities. There are trees to decorate, parties to plan, menus to organize, and shopping lists to make!

Postman Pete has been quite busy delivery holiday catalogues into each postbox. Shops and craftspeople have begun stocking special items for holiday shopping. Soon, store windows will be filled with beautiful holiday displays.

Young Sylvanians (and some that are not so young!) are taking part in the time honored tradition of making a Christmas wish list to give to their parents and Santa Claus!

Make an item or items, photograph a scene, write a story, or do whatever inspires you to do something creative around the Christmas Wish List theme or Christmas in general!

And my contribution to it. Hope you enjoy it!


Not far from the village of Arcfield there's a dense forest believed to be full of magic. The huge tree stump that the citizens use for many of their celebrations is just one of the many strange things that can be found in there. The elders and adults of the village, particularly those who have been living there for many years, tell many curious stories about the things that have happened to them or their acquaintances in those woods. There are also numerous stories of the many forest spirits that inhabit this mystical place.

The inhabitants of Arcfield have co-existed with these forest spirits (considered mostly friendly and helpful, though they can also be a tad mischievous) ever since the village was first founded, and thus, they follow many traditions that involve them. One of these traditions involve the children of the village taking a short stroll in the woods when Winter approaches in order to leave offerings for a particular spirit, known as Holyster. The offerings are to be deposited in a mysterious wooden trunk hidden in one of the forest's clearings; according to the stories, on the night of the Winter's solstice Holyster will empty the trunk and, if he likes the offerings, will bring the children gifts in return. This is why nowadays the children leave a wishlist along with their offering. However, if Holyster finds the gift lacking, the gift might not be what the child expected!

The day of the Winter solstice is fast approaching this year, so some of the children of Arcfield are going through the woods in search of the mysterious trunk where they must leave their offerings to Holyster. Each of them is carrying something with them; 

Frances Robinson drew a beautiful picture, Annabelle McFarlane wrote a short story...

Silvio and Livia Spinelli made delicious baked goods with the help of their mother (I think Silvio kind of wants to eat the bread himself, haha!), and Freya Chocolate... Well, Freya's going to improvise. She'll probably end up giving the spirit forest berries or a curiously-shaped leaf!

The children finally find Holyster's trunk in the woods, and leave their offerings and wishlists in it.
"Wow, it sure is bigger than I expected!"
"Did you know it appears on a different place of the forest every year?"

As they are about to leave, and after turning their backs to the trunk, they hear a mysterious voice speaking in a curious way behind them; it sounds very young, yet very old at the same time.

"I am v'ry fain thee cameth"

Although the voice and words are quite peculiar, the one who spoke looks just like an adorable baby koala. The children are startled at this sudden appearance, but Annabelle and Livia quickly approach him.

"Are you lost, little one? Do you need us to take you home?" 

"Nay! f'r i am the f'rest spirit, Holyster!" 

"Do you understand anything he's saying?" asks Silvio, scratching his head.

"Ah, I can talk like you do, if that's easier for you" the little koala smiles, suddenly speaking normally. "I said I am the forest spirit, Holyster. See? I'm wearing my colours, red and green. Surely you've been taught that! I'm glad you came to bring me your offerings this year as well".

The children look at each other, dumbfounded, the ones born in the village and that have been performing this tradition for years as stunned as the others. Never before has the spirit appeared before any of them! Annoyed at their silence, the one calling himself Holyster sighs.

"I see you don't believe me. Very well, let's see if this convinces you".

 There was a sudden flash of light, and when it went away...

 "Ta-dah! I am Holyster, the shape-shifting spirit of the forest!"

"Crème?!" asks Freya, her eyes wide open. The one now before them looked just like Freya's baby sister!

"Who's Crème?" asks the tiny rabbit. "I said I'm Holyster! This is just my luck, I show myself for the first time in centuries and I get the rudest children in town.

"I can't believe this" says Freya. The one calling herself Holyster looked at her coldly.

"I don't like you very much, little lady. You might not get any presents at all this year".
"Ah, we... we just, you see, we're surprised... We didn't mean to be rude, Mr... Mrs..." mumbles Frances Robison, quite shyly.

"Just Holyster is fine. Ahh, I understand, you're awed by my powerful presence, it's understandable. Here, I'll perform one last trick for you all!".

And, after another flash of light...

"Wow!" Livia exclaimed. "What are you now?!"

"As I mentioned, I am the forest spirit, Holyster". The strange being before the children smiled calmly. She seemed quite satisfied with their expressions. "I just wanted to let you know that I appreciate you coming to find my trunk every year. I'll make sure that you get excellent presents this year!"

And with that, the spirit winked at the children and simply vanished, like she had never been there. They were too stunned for words. Had they really witnessed a true forest spirit? It sure seemed like it... But would anyone believe them if they told the story? Still, they walked back home in good spirits, feeling like they had experienced something truly extraordinary.

That said, the spirit's ominous words would for sure be haunting Freya Chocolate's mind until the night of the Winter solstice!

"You might not get any presents at all this year"!


The End! Hope you enjoyed this little story. It's a bit different from what I usually write, but I wanted to start weaving some of Arcfield's unique mythology, and creating a "Christmas" spirit for this challenge seemed like a good way to start. :)

Now I'm inspired to keep thinking of other forests spirits, haha!

The adorable baby koala elf you saw in this story (the first form Holyster took) was a lovely gift from my collector friend Amaia. I absolutely adore him, and wanted to use him in one of my stories for sure! She also generously sent me two of the blind bag babies I was missing and a lovely card. Thank you so much, Amaia!

Before ending this post, here's an extra picture of the forest spirit, Holyster! She says hello!

I hope you get a lot of presents this year! :)

Have a wonderful week-end!

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

December Calendar Picture

Hello everyone!

I can hardly believe it, but it's already the last month of 2019, and my last Calendar post of the year!

Here is the picture for the month of December in the 2019 official SF Calendar:

We have a beautiful and quite Christmassy night scene in the Town! Stella Chocolate is here with her boyfriend, William Cinnamon, and I absolutely adore their clothes! I wish they sold these beautiful coats and suits! The Christmas Tree behind then is absolutely stunning, too, and the starry sky just adds to the atmosphere. I also love the tram with its light at the back! 

I thought for a moment that we had no Freya this time, but of course, that's not the case! :D She's on a balcony in the background, along with her mother Teri. :)

And now, the moment you've all been waiting for ever since the start of the year: the Freya and Crème count! Let's see how many times the two sisters have appeared in the 2019 Calendar pictures:

Freya Chocolate: 10 times!
Crème Chocolate: 6 times!

Freya wins, of course! With the boom and success of baby-themed items and sets lately, I kind of feel like Crème might become even more ubiquitous than her big sister, but it seems like for the time being, Freya's still in the lead!

All jokes aside, I also wanted to show you the picture for December 2018, also included in the Calendar, but that I didn't get to show:

This is a beautiful, snowy picture! I'm not sure if this is the new Beechwood Hall, it might be. I love how many Sylvanians there are in the picture, the huge Christmas tree and adorable little Crème on the top window. The decorations are also quite adorable. And once again, I want all those scarves and coats! :D 

And now, for the final surprise of this post: the December 2019 picture in the new 2020 Calendar!

There is currently a big Sylvanian Families exhibition in Spain, about an hour and a half away from where I live, organised by the Spanish branch of the company. It's apparently the biggest SF exhibition ever made in Europe! I had the chance of attending last week, and it was amazing! There were several huge dioramas representing the Village, the Seaside, the Town (this one even had movement!), and a beautiful snowy one with an ice-skating rink! I took loads of pictures and hope to make a post about it soon. :)
Here's a link to a news article with a couple of pictures:

In any case, they had the Calendar for 2020 for sale there, so I bought it! And here's the picture I mentioned, the very first one in the Calendar, for December 2019.

I love the clear colours and all the white and gold in this picture, and once again, Stella's coat is absolutely gorgeous! She's once again with her boyfriend William. Love those little decorative trees!

I've really enjoyed posting the monthly Calendar picture this year, as Emily and Cutata did before me. I'd be glad to continue doing it next year, but if someone else wants to take over for 2020, I'll be happy to read their posts too! :)

I have been pretty busy lately with non-Sylvanian things, so I'm pretty late for the forum challenges. I still haven't taken any pictures for the Wishlist one, and the following one (Christmas Dinner) has already been posted! I hope to be able to catch up soon. The lack of sunlight doesn't help, as I need to take pictures in the morning now, and I'm usually busy with work at those times. There's also a couple of other posts I want to write and publish here, so looks like I have my work cut out for me, blog-wise! :) Thank you everyone for reading and commenting, I truly appreciate it! I'm also quite behind in reading and commenting on your latest posts and contributions to the challenges, I hope to be able to do that soon!

I hope you have a wonderful December and wish you all happy holidays!

Sunday, November 24, 2019

A juicy business opportunity

Hello everyone!

I'm late for this one (sorry about that!) but the challenge prompt for the
first fortnight of November in the Sylvanian Families Collectors Community was:

Challenge #21: Gratitude

As the year’s harvest comes to a close, autumn is a wonderful time for Sylvanians to express gratitude for all sorts of things: a successful harvest, a full cupboard, family and friends, good health, warm clothing, comfortable homes, and all the abundance that comes with life in the forest.

There are many ways for Sylvanians to express gratitude. Some villages may celebrate gratitude with a harvest festival, feast, ritual, or other special event. Individuals might make a gift or write a special thank you message to a family member or friend. Gratitude can be expressed simply or extravagantly, in village-wide events, within families or small groups, or between individuals.

Make an item or items, photograph a scene, write a story, or do whatever inspires you to do something creative around the Gratitude theme!

And here's my contribution to it. Hope you enjoy it!


It was a chilly morning in the village of Arcfield, as Autumn was already in full swing and Winter was swiftly approaching. Nicholas McFarlane, the village's mayor, was saying goodbye to Arcfield's newest resident, Miss Ophelia Blackberry. They had just finished signing all the necessary documents in his home.
"And now that all the paperwork is done," he said, smiling, "you're officially a resident of Arcfield, Miss Blackberry. It's an honour for me to be the first one to officially welcome you here. I'm sure you'll enjoy living in our village!".
"Thank you very much for your help, Mr McFarlane. I'll just be on my way now". Not saying anything else, and barely giving him a slight smile and wave, Ophelia Blackberry turned around and started walking down the road that led back from the mayor's house up in the hill to the village itself. 

Nicholas couldn't help but think that she was a little strange. A young woman such as her, appearing out of nowhere and coming to live alone to a small village like Arcfield? She didn't speak much, and apparently hadn't told of her past to anybody. Still, Nicholas hoped that the friendly atmosphere in the village would help her relax and eventually open up a bit. He was certain that the residents of Arcfield could help her heal whatever wounds she might be hiding in her heart.
Or maybe she simply preferred to be left alone. He couldn't be sure, but she didn't really strike him as a timid person. Shrugging, he went back into his home. As mayor, there was always so much to do!

On her way towards her small new home, Ophelia passed by the town square. The Harvest Festival was already in full swing in Arcfield, and many of its residents had set up stalls and carts to advertise and sell their goods and food. Two of such residents were Arthur and Molly Waters, who were selling their home-grown produce on their fruit cart. Their fruit looked very appetizing, plump and shiny, and so it caught Ophelia's attention.

"Good day, Miss Blackberry" Arthur smiled when he noticed that Ophelia was looking at his fruit. "Could I interest you in some fruit? I can assure you it's delicious!"

Ophelia didn't have time to reply, as Molly Waters suddenly appeared at their side, smiling brightly at her. She had been attending to another customer, but had quickly sent them on their way as soon as she had spotted Ophelia. Molly was very interested in this quiet, lonely girl, who was a mystery wrapped in an enigma. She swiftly and abruptly interrupted her husband and took control of the conversation.
"Oh! Dear Ophelia, what a pleasure to see you here! Would you like to try one of our oranges? Come here, come here, I'll weigh one for you... Even better, two!"

Mrs Waters quickly led Ophelia away from her husband and next to the weight they had installed on their cart.
"Mrs Waters, wait a moment..." muttered Ophelia, but to no avail, as Molly ignored her and just kept talking and carefully weighing the fruit.
"My husband wasn't lying, you know? Our fruit is the absolute best around. We grow it ourselves, see? Whether you eat it as is or use it to make a pie, we guarantee the best flavour!"
"Mrs Waters..." 
"Oh my, my dear, please, just call me Molly!". Molly Waters' smile was as bright as the sun. Ophelia slowly blinked, twice, and finally managed to utter a complete sentence.
"Molly, please... I'm grateful for your kindness, but I don't currently have any money on me".

At these words, Molly Waters smiled even wider, if that was even possible, and quickly put the oranges in a basket to give to Ophelia.
"Oh, but that's no problem, no problem at all! Here, take them, consider them our welcome gift to you. Take some pears and grapes before you leave, too. Have you already finished your paperwork with mayor McFarlane, good old Nicholas?"
"Ah, well, yes..."
"Of course, of course, I knew it! I thought you had come from the hill. Don't worry about the money, please don't! All I ask is that when you come by my house to return the basket, you stay for tea and a little chat, hmm?"
"Oh... Well, yes, I guess I can do that". Ophelia seemed somewhat taken aback, and her voice was soft, but she nodded. "Thank you very much, Molly. And you, Mr Waters".
"Don't worry about it" said Arthur, smiling softly at her. "And just Arthur is fine".
"Thank YOU, my dear!" Molly Waters was over the moon at the perspective of learning all about young Ophelia's life and past. "And welcome to Arcfield!"

After Ophelia left, Arthur approached his wife, a frown on his face.

"You were too pushy, Molly. Do you really care about her past and her reasons for moving in so much? What if the girl just wants to keep it private? It's really none of your business".
"Ah, nonsense, nonsense, Arthur! I just want to make her feel welcome, I just invited her for tea, that's all! I want to be her friend, she's always all alone, the poor thing! It's that so bad, really? Don't be such a grump! It makes you look old".
Arthur sighed. He adored his wife, he truly did; he admired her generosity and honesty, and loved her candour and warmth, but he found her prying ways truly annoying at times. He knew it was futile to argue with her, so he decided to just drop the subject.

The following afternoon, Ophelia Blackberry knocked on the Water's door. Molly was delighted, as she was expecting her. She went out to invite her in... And was very surprised to see that she was carrying a huge blackboard with her.

"Welcome, dear Ophelia...! Oh, but what is this, my dear? It sure looks like it weighs a ton!"
"It's... indeed a little... heavy. Molly." Ophelia was out of breath; she left the blackboard on the floor with a deep sigh. "I've brought it because... because I'd like to make you and your husband a... a business proposal".
The expression on Ophelia's face was deadly serious, and Molly was quite astonished, so much that she didn't even know what to say. And that was rare for her! She had expected to have a heart-to-heart with Ophelia, sharing the tea and cookies she'd made for them both. But, a business proposal? She sure hadn't been expecting that.
Taken aback, she called her husband so that he'd help the young rabbit take her huge blackboard inside.

Once everything was ready, and the blackboard had been installed on the Waters' living room, Ophelia asked the couple to sit down on the sofa and began her presentation. She was quite earnest, and Molly was so shocked that she didn't even think of bringing out the tea and cookies. Only the coffee Arthur had been drinking was on the living room table. The afternoon was surely shaping up differently from what she had expected!

"First of all" Ophelia said, solemnly, "I wanted to thank you for the delicious fruit you gave me. I enjoyed it very much; this is why, being that I am new in town and that I do not yet have a job, I'd like to propose you a business collaboration. And what I'm proposing is that you sell me some of your fruit, which I will use to make juice and jam. I will, of course, clearly announce that they're are made from your delicious fruit. This will thus benefit us both".

The Waters couple were astounded. It was the first time someone proposed something like this to them, and besides, it was quite surprising to see Miss Blackberry talking so much, and in such a resolute way! She was normally so reserved and quiet! She attentively studied her reactions, and then kept talking:

"How many pieces of fruit do children need to eat per day? How many do your children eat, Molly and Arthur, even though you grow the fruit yourselves? I'm sure you have to fight with them sometimes to get them to have their daily rations. But, what do children love? Precisely, juice and jam. One glass of fresh juice contains a great portion of the vitamins children need to stay healthy. And it's also wonderful for adults, of course!"
After making a small pause to clear her throat, she continued.
"Furthermore, I'm sure that, even though you work so hard to harvest your delicious fruit, there's a lot that goes to waste; pieces that don't look good enough to sell, for example, but that I could use for my juices and jams. If we collaborate, we'll be able to use your whole harvest, sell delicious fruit, juice and jam to the villagers AND make a profit!".

As she finished her proposal, Ophelia breathed deeply through her nose and stared at the Waters, waiting for their reply. Since they didn't immediately react, she uttered a final sentence:

"And that is why I'm proposing that we work together". Her voice sounded a bit softer, her adrenaline levels lowering. "If you'd like, of course". 
Finally, Arthur Waters let out a laugh and started clapping. Molly looked at her husband, smiled, and started doing the same. 

"Now, that's an entrepreneuring young woman if I ever saw one! I think you managed to convince us!".

Ophelia blushed almost imperceptibly and gave them a tiny smile. Molly thought that she seemed happy, and felt like she was already starting to understand her a bit better; and she hadn't even needed to ask any questions!

Several days later, the big day arrived at last! Ophelia had been tirelessly working on her fresh juices and jams using the Waters' delicious fruit, and she was now slowly carrying her things to a bench that was near where the Waters usually parked their cart. She hoped no one would mind if she sold her products there until she could get something better.

So, as you can imagine, she was very surprised when Mr Waters appeared with her sons, Fred and George, carrying a big piece of furniture and a small table!
"Oh? What's this?" she asked, confused.
"Well, you see" Arthur Waters said "Even though I run the fruit cart with my wife and we grow our produce together, I'm also quite good at building and fixing things; and since we're now business partners, I figured you needed a place to properly sell your delicious juice! You'll even have room to display some fruit on it".

"And I also made you a small table for your juice makers and jams. You can set your things as you'd like, of course!" Arthur smiled as he looked at Ophelia and at the furniture he had made for her. He looked quite satisfied with his work.
Ophelia was speechless. She stared at both pieces of furniture, dumbfounded. It even looked like Molly had sewn a small mantelpiece for the juice bar.
"But... Arthur, Mr Waters... I... I can't pay for this".
"Pay? Who has said anything about paying? There's no need; as I mentioned, this is simply part of our business collaboration". Still he smiled sincerely at her. 
Ophelia opened and closed her mouth several times, looking for something to say, but couldn't find anything. She couldn't believe the Waters where being so nice to her, when they barely knew her at all. Her feelings overwhelmed her, and brought tears to her eyes. She wiped them with the back of one hand and looked at Arthur, her voice slightly trembling.
"I'm... I'm so grateful. Thank you, thank you very much!".
"You're welcome, of course!".

And that was how young Ophelia Blackberry ended up working with Arthur and Molly Waters, selling delicious fresh juice and homemade jams using their carefully grown fruit. Her products are quite popular in Arcfield already! I wonder if Molly managed to learn of her mysterious past, of if she has decided to give her some space for now!

I tried to reflect the theme for the challenge by incorporating both the Harvest Festival and the gratitude Ophelia felt for the opportunity and the help the Waters gave her. 

Hope you enjoyed this story, and sorry it took so long to get it finished!

Have a wonderful rest of November!

Saturday, November 2, 2019

November Calendar Picture

Hello everyone!

It's November already and here I am, with the picture for this month.

This time the picture seems to illustrate a very glamorous fashion show! Those dresses sure are fancy and elegant, truly gorgeous! What's even better, they're fan-made! 
Last year, Epoch organised a Fashion Design Contest for their 60-year anniversary in Japan. I believe the ones in this month's picture are some of the entries. More information and pictures here in Sylvanian Families Specialty Store's webpage:
Everyone who participated is so amazingly talented!
We already knew Stella Chocolate was a fashion designer, but she's apparently not afraid of modeling as well! Her friends Lulu Golightly and Laura Cakebread are also here with her.

I was going to say that Freya or Crème are not here this time, but I see several Chocolate rabbits on the audience, so one of them might easily be Freya!
(Sorry about the reflections on the picture, it's because of the way the calendar paper slightly folds on my wall. It's easier to see this month because the picture is darker than usual). 

Hope you have a wonderful month of November!

Tuesday, October 29, 2019

Sylvanian costumes and birthday gifts

Hello everyone!

This fortnight's challenge prompt in the Sylvanian Families Collectors Community was:

Challenge #20: Costumes and Fancy Dress

Halloween is eagerly anticipated by children and adults alike in Sylvania! Apple bobbing, scary stories, and candy are all well-loved Halloween traditions, but more than anything, Sylvanians look forward to showing off their costumes.

Vintage wear, historical figures, popular characters, elaborate fashions, traditional legends and more all make for excellent costume opportunities. Costumes can be beautiful, scary, silly, simple, elaborate, surprising, mysterious - whatever you like!

Make an item or items, photograph a scene, write a story, or do whatever inspires you to do something creative around the Costumes theme!

I was feeling a bit drained after my last (and quite long) story, so just a simple picture from me this time:

Babies and children like to wear costumes for the Autumn festival in Arcfield. We have here a princess, a mummy and a little ghost! One of the Waters beavers babies is hiding under that blanket, and I hear that Molly Waters is not too pleased; her oldest twin sons might or might have not made a costume for their baby sister out of a perfectly useful bed blanket...

I made the mummy and ghost costumes by following Mimi's tutorial: ... t-baskets/

As you know, last October 19th was my birthday. I received quite a lot of Sylvanian-related presents, I'm delighted!

As you know, back in August I got the gift set for Brick Oven Bakery. As my birthday got closer and on the actual day I also received:

- The Tuxedo cat family (which I had been wanting for a long time, love them! I already had two Tuxedo babies from the blind bags, so that works out great!).
- The Chihuahua family (I adore them, so cute in person!).
- The Splashy Otters with their adorable babies (they're just the cutest!).
- The Fruit Cart.
- The Juice Bar with Betty Blackberry (which complements the fruit cart nicely!).

As you can imagine, I'm quite pleased! Looking forward of thinking of biographies and stories involving my new figures and sets.

I am also happy to report that I received a birthday card from the official SF fanclub! Last year I never got it, so I'm glad to have received it this time.
It's gorgeous and looks a bit like a pop-up book. Here are some pictures. Isn't it adorable? 
It's made to look like the new version of Beechwood Hall, or Red Roof Country Home.


That's it from me today. Hope you have a great week!