There are so many magical beings in the world: stone beings, air fairies, wood elves, fire sprites. Most of us cannot see or hear them, but sometimes — especially when we are very young — we can. Each week in So Many Fairies, children will enter the magic of the natural world, encounter fairy folk, and meet questions of ecology and sustainability with their imaginations.
ABOUT THE STORIES
This is a collection of 13 winter stories, for the 13 weeks of winter.
The Brownie and the Lost Squirrel
In a sudden and dramatic snow storm, an old squirrel loses his way. Luckily a forest fairy, or “brownie,” has been watching over the squirrel since he was a kit. The helpful brownie gains the support of an air fairy, a water nymph, and a fire sprite to help the squirrel back to his cozy nest and family.
The Paper Birch Council
In many forests, there is a “Paper Birch Council” made of very old and very wise paper birch trees and their tree elves. They serve to keep the forest and the fairy world informed. Few people know of this council, but one person who does is Miss Hadley, a school teacher. She understands the powerful abilities of the birch and their devoted elves; and when she has an important message, she takes her three young students on a hike to the Paper Birch Council to deliver it.
Ilsa and the Mountain Gnome
Ilsa, the dreamy girl from a small mountain-valley village, loses her way and ends up on top of a mountain. There she meets Crisp, the mountaintop gnome who is surprised to find that Ilsa can see him. She offers a gift to Crisp and he, in turn, gives her a gift that opens a door to her future.
Benno and the Water Nymph
A poor farm family sails across the sea to seek a new life of possibility. When they finally arrive, they see that the land is parched and there is no water in sight. But Benno, the farm boy, smells something familiar — it is the smell of the hillside spring near their old home. What he doesn’t know is that the water nymph from that spring has followed them … and is ready to help.
Luck and the Blue Jay
Ripley is a bold bluejay with quite a temper. For the past few years he has developed a reputation for his temper, and consequently, other birds have begun to avoid him. A host of fairies teach Ripley about finding inner peace and calm using the help of, well, something very surprising!
The Source of Snow
Snow has a particular and powerful magic in the fairy world. Did you know the unique shapes of snow crystals have a wondrous connection to the wishes and dreams of children? Let this story tell you how.
The Magic Birthday Candles
Sarah Jane’s friends love all her fancy toys and her big playroom, but she would rather play “Hide-and-Seek” or “Explorers” or tag — and not cars or dolls. On her sixth birthday, surrounded by her friends, she makes a birthday wish that inspires a certain fire fairy to create some unique birthday magic for the whole party.
The Bakery Crystals
Delia’s bakery does a fine business selling beautiful cakes and pastries to the many visitors to her town. Her customers agree, however, that everything sold there has a faint taste of sadness and longing. But one day, the old stone hearth is lit, waking the joyful fire sprite sleeping inside, and Delia’s world changes. This is a story of grieving and the magic that comes with letting go.
Luck of the Maple Candy
Leibli, the sugar maple elf, has been delivering sweet maple sap to the Morrison family for generations. Every year Mr. and Mrs. Morrison snowshoe down to the “sugarbush” to tap the trees and boil syrup in their sugar shack. One year, however, only Mr. Morrison comes. Leibli knows that it’s a good time to offer him a little extra sweetness.
The Ladybugs in the Window
The little house by the lake has been in the same family for generations. Much has changed inside: indoor plumbing, insulation, a new heating system. The home has been completely modernized with one exception: one of the windows, the south facing bedroom window, has not been changed. The old man who owns the house has never replaced the window for one reason: the ladybugs — or rather — the ladybug fairies!
Anna loves the garden and the woods because that is where her best friends live — the fairies. But school is a different matter. In school she feels alone and out-of-place. That is, until she has a remarkable dream about fairy feathers and the little itchy bumps can come when the feathers fall out. Anna wakes with a case of the chicken pox, and a new sense of herself at school.
The Gift of the Echo Fairy
Caldor and his son Dag are on a mission. They’ve gone in search of Echo Canyon and the wise man that lives there. It is said he can answer any question - and the travelers have one that may affect the future of their village. It is a long journey, and eventually they find the canyon and call out their question. But the wise man is not a man at all, and the answer they receive both surprises and delights them.
Malkia and the Fairy Woman
Malkia’s father is a famous astronomer. One day, he gathers his daughters and tells them about his discovery. A new star has been found — one that could lead them to the Golden Palace, a magical place where all wishes are granted that is considered by most to be a myth. His two oldest daughters use their study and charts to try and find their way — and both girls end up lost. But Malkia, his youngest daughter, uses her love of the world, the sun, and the stars to reach the Fairy Woman, the only one who can help her find the way.