Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Stories of love and worth

When I was little someone--probably my grandmother-- gave me Miss Flora McFlimsey's Christmas Eve, and I fell in love without even understanding that the delightful watercolor paintings were illustrated by the book's author, Mariana.

I just knew I loved the little doll who was forgotten for years in an attic with only a toy sheep who could no longer baaa and a box of tiddly-winks. She did have a mouse to talk to, though.

Miss Flora had once belonged to a girl with red-topped shoes but that girl had grown up long ago. So Flora sat in the attic, lonely in her faded silk dress and straw hat.

One year on Christmas Eve, she so wanted to see a decorated tree again she slipped downstairs

Santa showed up and realized he was one doll short. When he saw Flora he set her under the tree. The other dolls , a brand-new bride and one in a fashionable coat, laughed at her. Then her mouse friend and the angel from the top of the tree found Flora's trunk of clothes and brought out a blue velvet dress, gold locket, white gloves and hand muff.

Mariana paints a glorious page full of bonnets, parasol, pantaloons, shoes and hats that come from the trunk.

"And then the wonderful thing that she felt was about to happen, really did happen." When morning comes, Miss Flora McFlimsey is sought out and once again loved by a little girl.

Not only did I love that book, I remembered it years later and mentioned how much it had meant to me to a friend. And what did my friend do? Found me a library edition online. Miss Flora McFlimsey and I are reunited. And we feel the love.

I'm feeling lots of award love these days. Julie Dao at Silver Lining
passed along the Silver Lining Award. Julie is a YA writer with some fantastic works-in-progress. Be sure to check her out. Thank you, Julie.
I plan to do some blog links in the near future for this and two other awards. After the holidays!

And finally, I just want to sincerely wish every one, of all faiths or non-faiths, of all ethnicities and nationalities, a peaceful holiday and a most happy and prosperous New Year.
PEACE ON EARTH. That's my wish.


Unknown said...

Amen to that! Happy holiday!

MG Higgins said...

My best wishes to you as well, Tricia. What a lovely Christmas story and beautifully told.

Sara {Rhapsody and Chaos} said...

Aw, I love the sound of that story! My friends are all in their "it's time to have lots of babies" stages, and I think this would be an excellent gift!

Your friend sounds like a fabulous friend :-)

Natalie said...

That book looks so familiar! I had a deja vu moment. I think maybe my grandma used to read it to me. I hope you have a lovely holiday too!

Corey Schwartz said...

Oh, that book sounds so sweet.

Jennifer Shirk said...

Awww...that was so nice of your friend. Sounds like a sweet book.

Merry Christmas!

Bethany Wiggins said...

I love poppies, too. They are all over my yard, in every flower bed. Your blog is beautiful. Have a delightful holiday season and may you discover many dreams in the coming year, and may many dreams come true!

Donna said...

Sniff. Such a lovely story. The mysterious "light" picture is enchanting, too.

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Nisa: Indeed. Great to have you here.

Mel: Thanks, my friend.

Sara: Some of the copies are from the original printing and are pricey but there was a reprint version and there are libraries that sell off old books so that's a way to get it more reasonably. And, oh, yes, my friend is super fabulous and thoughtful

Natalie: That would be so cool if your grandma read it to you, too. It's such a sweet story, really about love and worth.

Corey: It really is, and I love her paintings.

Jennifer: Yes, my friend is really good to me.

Bethany: Welcome! Another poppy fan, yay! They are so simple and lush at the same time. I'm loving that dream wish and send it back to you.

Donna: Best friend. Ever. The light is reflection off a star on my tree and a red bird. Thank so much!

* said...

I feel the love. That sounds like a gem of a book!

Congrats of your award! And merry holidays to you, too, my bloggy friend!

Melissa Hurst said...

I've never heard of that book, but I know my middle daughter would love it. Thanks for sharing it with us:) Have a very Merry Christmas!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Terresa: It's one of those simplier books from an earlier era, but it's a charmer. Good cheer!

Melissa: It's an old book, but there are copies sold online. Merry Christmas to you, too!

Stephanie Faris said...

I've never read that book but it sounds good. It sounds like something my niece and nephew would like! They love to read.

storyqueen said...

Those are my favorite kinds of stories...and I don't think they write them like that anymore.

Happy Christmas to you, Tricia! I do so love to read your wanderings/wonderings.


Liza said...

Wonderful story for a wonderful day. Merry Christmas Tricia!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Stephanie: It's probably out-of-print but findable online--an old-timey kind of storybook.

Shelley: I think you're right. This is old-fashioned but with a timeless truth about love. Thanks--I love to read yours, too!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Liza! You snuck in on me. Thank you and have a lovely day, too. I'm off to relative's this very minute.

Bish Denham said...

Miss Flora sounds like a delightful story, one right up my alley. Merry Christmas to you and yours, Tricia!

Stephanie Thornton said...

That book sounds adorable- I bet my daughter would love it.

I hope you had a very Merry Christmas!

Tricia J. O'Brien said...

Bish: She certainly stuck with me!

Stephanie: Thank you, and you, too!

kanishk said...

My best wishes to you as well, Tricia. What a lovely Christmas story and beautifully told

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