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Trudi's Titbits


THE GARDEN GNOMEGarden Gnome on swing

               The children were very pleased when daddy brought home a garden gnome. He was a cheerful gnome with a smiling face. His hat and his jacket were red and his trousers were green. He had red, pointed shoes on his feet. he had a long white beard and his eyes were a very bright blue. he stood in the back garden at the edge of the grass.

          The children ran out before breakfast to say "hello" to him and they often ra out at bedtime to say "good-night." The children grew very fond of him. Jane washed his face when it got dirty and Janet gave him a twig for a walking stick.

          The gnome never stopped smiling not even when it rained. He smiled all the time especially when a robin perched on his hat and sang.

          One day the girls were eating strawberries in the garden close by the gnome. They were called in for a time as a visitor had arrived, but when they came back Jane looked down at her plate in amazement.

        Garden Gnome with wheel-barrow "Janet, when mum called us in I had four strawberries on my plate, four really big ones and now, look there are only three!" Where could it have gone? Jane stared in bewilderment at her plate.

          "Oh my goodness!" exclaimed Janet, "I left three on my plate and now I only have two, were on earth could they have gone. Do you think a bird could have ate them?"

          Jane shook her head, "I don't think so , a bird would have just pecked at them but who else could it have been?" mused Jane.    Together the girls looked round the garden, then Jane let out a squeal. "Janet, look at the gnome, he's smiling more than ever and just look at his mouth?" There was a red stain round his mouth and his smile grew even bigger. "I do believe you ate them, didn't you gnome?"

           Then to the surprise of both girls the gnome replied. "Yes I did, you see they looked so delicious and you never bothered to offer me any, I just couldn't resist them. I hope you don't mind?"

        "Of course we don't mind." said Janet. We didn't know that you could eat or talk . In fact we thought you were just well... plaster."

"Oh yes, I can walk and talk and do lots of other things," said the gnome. but I keep still and quiet when there are grown upGarden Gnomess about."

          The girls just sat there for a few seconds , it was hard to believe that their garden gnome could talk and walk just like a real person. "Will you be able to talk to us again? Asked the girls eventually.

          "Yes, of course I will, but it will have to be when we are alone."  After that the gnome often talked to the girls and they found him very useful too. If they were shelling the peas for their mother the gnome loved to help them. And he was terrific at finding lost balls or even marbles. His eyes were very sharp. In fact he was like magic when he had to turn himself back to plaster . The sound of a step or a voice and he froze in a twinkling. The girls became quite used to this and after a whilethey stopped being surprised when it happened.

One day when the girls went out to greet him they found him very excited. "Hurry girls, look in the garden next door." They looked over the hedge and they saw another garden gnome, this time with a pipe in his mouth and a spade in his hand.

Gnome Footballer"His name is Jeremy," said their gnome. "We had a long talk last night and I think we are going to become best friends."

That night after Janet and Jane had gone to bed, they tip-toed to the window and peeped through the curtains. They could see the two gnomes talking together through a hole in the hedge.

 "I am so glad they like each other so much." said Jane, as they climbed back into bed. "It will be so nice for them to play together when everyone is asleep and to talk about whatever it is gnomes talk about."


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The Old Woman Who Swallowed a Fly

There was an old woman who swallowed a fly,

Perhaps she'll die!

There was an old woman who swallowed a spider
               That wiggled and wiggled and jiggled inside her
She swallowed the spider to catch the fly,

I don't know why she swallowed a fly --

Perhaps she'll die!

There was an old woman who swallowed a birdJay
            Oh how absurd to swallow a bird
She swallowed the bird to catch the spider
               That wiggled and wiggled and jiggled inside her
She swallowed the spider to catch the fly,
I don't know why she swallowed a fly --
Perhaps she'll die!

catThere was an old woman who swallowed a cat
              Imagine that! She swallowed a cat.
She swallowed the cat to catch the bird
           Oh  how absurd to swallow a bird
She swallowed the bird to catch the spider
        That wiggled and wiggled and jiggled inside her
She swallowed the spider to catch the fly,
I don't know why she swallowed a fly --
Perhaps she'll die!

There was an old woman who swallowed a dogdog
            Oh, what a hog to swallow a dog!
She swallowed the dog to catch the cat
             Imagine that! She swallowed a cat.
She swallowed the cat to catch the bird
           Oh how absurd to swallow a bird
 She swallowed the bird to catch the spider
            That wiggled and wiggled and jiggled inside her
She swallowed the spider to catch the fly,
I don't know why she swallowed a fly --
Perhaps she'll die!

There wgoatas an old woman who swallowed a goat
She opened her mouth and it went down her throat
          She swallowed the goat to catch the dog
Oh, what a hog to swallow a dog!
                 She swa
llowed the dog to catch the cat
Imagine that! She swallowed a cat.
            She swallowed the cat to catch the bird
How absurd to swallow a bird
                     She swallowed the bird to catch the spider
That wiggled and wiggled and jiggled inside her
       She swallowed the spider to catch the fly,
I don't know why she swallowed a fly --
Perhaps she'll die!
There was an old woman who swallowed a cow
       I don't know how she swallowed a cow

She swallowed a cow to catch the goat
     She opened her mouth and it went down her throat
She swallowed the goat to catch the dog
               Oh, what a hog to swallow a dog!
She swallowed the dog to catch the cat
                   Imagine that! She swallowed a cat.
She swallowed the cat to catch the bird
                     How ab
surd to swallow a birdfly

horseShe swallowed the bird to catch the spider
        That wiggled and wiggled and jiggled inside her

She swallowed the spider to catch the fly,
               I don't know why she swallowed a fly --
Perhaps she'll die!

There was an old woman who swallowed a horse!

She dead, of course!

Seligor's Castle say's "Everybody knows you can't go around swallowing all these animals, it's obvious they are going to KICK back.

Dora the Explorer
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"Do all children have names?
   They do - Wow!"

"Do you think you can tell me some of them?

You Can! - Go on then ...."

A is for Alan, who Argued in Ayr.
B is for Betty, she Bounced on the Bear
C is for Charlie, he is a Chuckling Chappie
D is for Donna, who Dances De-Rappie
E is for Elwyn, who Eats Eggs every Easter
F is for Fiona, who Flirts as she Flitters
G is for Georgie, who Grows tall, Green, Grass
H is for Harriette, who's Hen wouldn't Hatch
I is for Iwan, he Inspected the Indians
J is for Jessie, she Juggled with Jillian
K is for Kevin, he was Kind and a King.
L is for Linda, who Lounged in the Ling
M is for Michael he Made Monkey faces.
N is for Nerys she Never Needs laces
O is for Oswald, he Often plays Ollies
P is for Penelope, she has Priceless Polly's
Q is for Queenie, who is Quiet and Quaint
R is for Ruby, who is Round and who Ain't

S is for Sean, Severe, Strong and Sound
T is for Tina, The Tantrum of the Town
U is for Ulysees, Unbelievably Untold
V is for Violet, Very, Viable, and bold
W is For William With Wishes in a Well
X is for Xavier, who eXpects to eXcel
Y is for Yolanda a Young Yankie Yo-Yo
Z is for Zac whose was Zany with Zeal all a go, go

And there you have it, an Alphabet full of 
                       special names, One of them could be your name.
                        Why don't you try making an Alphabet out of all your
friends at School,
You could do it as a class and get
the teachers to help you.



1: What's Scooby's favourite food?SCOOBY DOO WHERE ARE YOU?

 ONE Your Answer
Scooby Biscuits  1  
Scooby Snacks 2

Scooby Cookies  3  

2: Scooby, Shaggy, Fred, Velma. Who's missing?
 TWO Your Answer
Daphne 1

Deirdre  2  
Dorothy  3  
3: What is the gang's vehicle called?

 THREE Your Answer
The Tricky Truck  1  
The Mystery Machine 2

The Vanishing Van  3  


 FOUR Your Answer
Scoobert 1

Scoobford  3  

5: Which of the following appeared as one of Scooby's cousins?

 FIVE Your Answer
Scooby-Don't  1  
Scooby-Dum  2
Sally-Doo 3

Scoobert "Scooby"-Doo is a presidential candidate, astronaut and the eponymous character of the popular television franchise Scooby-Doo.
At an early age, he was brought to the Mystery Inc. team. 
Scooby-Doo is a Great Dane who is the pet and best friend of Norville "Shaggy" Rogers.
His real first name was unknown until an episode of A Pup Named Scooby Doo, when his parents revealed his real first name as being Scoobert, much to Scooby's embarrassment.

6: Complete this line from the song:
'Scooby-dooby-Doo, where are you?
We've got.".

 SIX Your Answer
Some scary stories  1  
Some tasty food here  2  
Some work to do now


7: Which island do the gang visit in the first live-action Scooby film?

 SEVEN Your Answer
Scary Island  1  
Spooky Island 2

Scooby Island  3  

8: Who owns the island?

 EIGHT Your Answer
Doctor Spectre 1
Doctor Creepychops  2  
Mondavarious  3

9: Which of the following is NOT a real (cartoon) Scooby movie?

 NINE Your Answer
Scooby-Doo And The Cyber Chase 1
Scooby-Doo And The Boo Brothers  2  
Scooby-Doo And The Goblet Of Fire  3




10: What's Shaggy's real name?

 TEN Your Answer
Shaun Garston 1
Norville Rogers  2
Norman Rivers  3  

scene from "What a Night for a Knight", the first episode of Scooby-Doo,

Where Are You!Shaggy, Fred, Scooby-Doo, Velma, and Daphne.

Clockwise from top:

sweet shop or Candy Store

Liquorice and Aniseed.

       Come, my sweet, it is not meet for you to lay in bed all day eating licorice and aniseed that way  -
there are chores to be done
cobwebs to be swept away and spurs to be won and then there is the cooking of dinner (life is not all curds and whey) or thee and I shall get much thinner.

      Licorice is fine to suck
but does not, alas, consist of much  and, furthermore, it blackens the tongue which surely is wrong, especially  for one as highly strung as I.

As for aniseed, although it is pleasant enough in a medicinal and hermetic way, it is less substantial than carrots or spinach -
a few brief moments on
the palate and then it is gone in less than a minute with little left to show for itself.

      Rouse thyself, my gentle help-meet and gain the towering eminence of thine feet:
perambulate to the shopping mall and fill up the larder if you fain will - a veal and ham pie wouldst pleaseth mine eye, followed perhaps by a nice cherry pie smothered in custard
with crackers for afters with soft cheese and mustard.
What? Mine words do not move thee?
Then mayhap this cricket bat might suffice to shift thine backside in a paltry instance or trice...

More sweeties   I did not woo and wed thee that thee might lay in bed and suck licorice and aniseed all day.

Pray, have pity, at least get up and make me a fresh cup of tea.

 For the Children, From Willow



Seligor calls Computer Repair Premises

Hello there, my printer's not working; Do you think you can help me please?
Young man on other end of the phone:
 I will try Madam, please can  you tell me what is wrong with it?

The mouse is jamming up my printer

Young Man:     
Did you say the Mouse is jamming the printer ?   I think you may have made a mistake madam, you see the printers don't use the mouse!

Oh dear, then I'm not sure what else it could be.Look I have your email here, I will send you the page to you.

Young Man:    
  If you think it will help madam,I shall stay on line till it comes through.   

Scroll Down.

Scroll Down.

Scroll Down.

Scroll Down

           Poor Mouseeeeeee

The Little Mouse wasn't hurt children

Nicol Williamson, born 1936, He was the Narrater of this wonderful Record.

Hobbit 70th anniversary

Narrated and Acted by
Nicol Williamson born in South Lanarkshire in 1936.

Playlist created by

RingsradioDrama.com Thankyou so much.

I am hoping to find another recording of this story soon, xxx
The Hobbit by JRR Tolkien

The Hobbit by JRR Tolkein
And now for another Tale of Wonder and Romance
from the pen of Stephen Southwold.
Trudi was a little upset about the title of the Tale but then again with the tales that are written and told by Stephen Southwold,
we don't always have any connection to the tale at all!


The rain was drizzling down from the sad grey sky on to a sad grey sea. I sat staring out of my tiny cottage window, watching the seagulls resting disconsolately upon the water, as miserable as I was for lack of the sunshine.
     Presently I turned away from the window and drawing my chair up to the fire, leaned back and looked at my queer old clock. It certainly is a queer clock. It is built like a house and in front there are two doors. One door is always open and the other always shut. When the weather is going to be wet a quaint little old man with a ruddy face stands outside his door, and when the weather is fine an equally quaint little old lady stands outside of her door. One is always within and the other always without, and so they never get to see one another or have the slightest chance of a friendly greeting.
And so as I leaned back in my chair and looked at the little old man with his quaint ruddy face, his stiff arms and legs, and a farmer's hat perched awry over one eye.
     The seagulls were sad, I indeed none to happy, but the look of misery upon the face of the little old man was so heart rending that I exclaimed, "Cheer up, old gentleman; the sun will shine tomorrow."
     "So much the worse for me," he replied, in so woebegone a voice that I had difficulty in keeping from laughter.
  "So much the worse for me ," he repeated, "for I never get to see the sun. Sunshine for happy folks means gloom and darkness for me; for then I am shut up in this wretched little house, Although. " he added thoughtfully, my dear wife comes out to enjoy the sun, and I suppose that is something."
   "Your wife ?" I asked in surprise.
   "Of course !" he snapped a little crossly. "Why, who else should could it be ?"
   "certainly, certainly, " I agreed soothingly; but you see I didn't know. How could I ?
   "True," he replied more amiably, "how should you ?" He was quiet for a moment and then he went on. "Shall I tell you my sad tale, our sad story, in fact ?"
   "The very thing," I replied eagerly; "there's nothing like a story on a rainy day."
    "It's very sad you know," he ventured, putting his head  a little on one side.
   "A sad tale for a sad day," I answered. "Perhaps we'll both feel happier when you've told it. Do go on."
   "Listen then," he said.
And so, leaning well back in my chair, and pushing my feet a little higher up the side of the mantle piece, I drew a deep breath, nodded my head, and prepared to hear his story.

             "Once long ago [he said], how long I have forgotten now, but a weary while ago it must have been, my wife and I lived in a small cottage in the country. We had a big garden and many cocks and hens and pigs. At the bottom of the garden we kept two goats and a donkey; and besides many beautiful flowers we grew cabbages, beans, peas, carrots, turnips and potatoes. And in the fruit season our cherry, plum, pear and apple trees were so loaded with fruit that we could give all the good children, (and the naughty ones, too) of the neighbourhood as much as they could eat, and yet have plenty left to sell and to eat ourselves.
     Our fowls were wonderful layers, our sows farrowed well, and we got fine prices for our piglets; our vegetables sold handsomely, and our two nanny goats gave rich milk. And so our days were happy days; and if we had only a child or two of our own we should have been the most contented couple in the world.
     But no babe ever came to our cottage, and we had reached the age when hope of a baby must be given up. My wife was as good a wife as ever a man had. her temper was a little short: maybe a baby would have softened her sharp tongue, and so saved us from the terrible thing that came upon us.
 But I was as bad myself, and when she spoke to me crossly I replied in like fashion; and then in no time at all we were quarrelling and hurting one another with words that we did not mean.
I don't quite remember now how the real mischief began; but certain it is that suddenly my wife began to say as soon as we sat down to breakfast, "William, it's going to be fine today, I can see the sky; you'd better work in the garden."
   And whether it was because I was hungry and irritable, or simply that I just would be contrary, I took to replying, "Nonsense, my dear Mary, I'm sure it will rain before noon."
     And that was how it really began. It sounds a silly thing for two happy old married folk to quarrel about; but quarrel we did, and very bitterly, too; and before many weeks had passed our once quiet and peaceful breakfast time had become a babel of bickering and shouting.
Every breakfast time was now alike. As soon as she had put the eggs upon the table, cut the bread and buttered it, made the tea and taken the honeycomb from the crock, my wife would look at the sky and say, "Ah William, 'twill be fine today, I know."
"Quick as a flash I would reply crossly, "Nonsense Mary, 'twill rain by noon."
  It did not matter in the least what the sky looked like. However grey and threatening it hung over the cottage my wife would say it was going to be fine. And I was just as foolish: for with a blue sky overhead, and a warm bright sun shining through the windows upon the white napery and pleasant food, I would insist that it was going to rain.
     And soon the quarrel would be at it's height, and our voices would be shrill and loud with anger.
"William, don't you dare to contradict me."
"Mary, you are being foolish."
The finest day we've had for years, it' going to be."
"Raining cats and dogs before eleven."
"I say 'twill be fine."
"I say it won't."
"William, I say it will!"
"I won't, Mary!"
"Will !"
"Won't !"
"How dare you, William !"
"How dare you !"
And so on and so on and so on until the neighbours from the cottages craned out of their windows, and the children going to school peeped in wondering through the open door at such a dreadful spectacle.
     Now one dear delicious morning in early summer, when the very beauty of the day should have kept our hearts and tempers sweet and clean, there came a tap-tap-tapping at the window in the midst and height of our quarrel.
     We both stopped our unkind speeches and looked toward the window. It was wide open at the top, and looking in at us with a part puzzled, part sad and part mocking look upon his wrinkled old face was old Toby Matlin, who, the people of the countryside said, was a wizard, a sorcerer, a magician, and goodness knows what else besides.
Old Toby was a wonderful man, 'tis true, and could charm a wart, cure a colic, ease a whitlow, and make new hair sprout on a bald pate in a way that was amazing.
   We stared at him half angrily, yet a little chapfallen.
"For shame, William," he said, wagging a bent forefinger at me. "And shame on you too Mary."
"Mind your own affairs, Toby Matlin !" snapped my wife.
"You be off, Toby, " I cried angrily.
"Spoiling the sunshine, mocking the flowers, and frightening the liddle birds, you be," went on Toby.
"You're a nose-poke, Toby Matlin,"
screamed my wife.
 "The ugly face of ye'll spoil the honey," I roared. "Now Take you away."
       Toby then drew himself up to his full height and a rare tall fine man he was for all his years.
"Mary, woman," he said softly, looking her full in the eyes, "your ill tongue is a bad friend to your good heart. William," and he looked over to me so strangely that my heart thumped, "Ye're a sad fool to bicker with a good wife."
"Ye're not wanted here, Toby Matlin," screamed my wife, nigh to tears, "Get gone on your own business."
"Trundle off on your bandy legs, Toby." I shouted furiously, rising in my chair and shaking my fist at him.
"I'll see you the morrow," he replied quietly; and then he was gone.
   The poke nose peeping Tom," said Mary; you better close the shutters on the window tomorrow, William."
"I had best, my dear, surely," I replied; and, our quarrel forgotten, we turned to the meal and made a hearty breakfast.
But the next morning found us once more in the middle of a bitter quarrel, and once again our loud angry voices rose in the little room.
I had forgotten my promise to close the shutters: indeed on such  a gay morning who would have shut out the pleasant sunshine?
And so, suddenly, tap-tap-tap sounded upon the window; and there once again was old Toby Matlin looking down on us.
But his face was stern and angry now, and his eyes were so strange and terrible that I felt as if a cold hand were laid upon my stomach.
"The liddle birds," he was beginning, when Mary, in a sudden burst of fury, seized the cottage loaf and hurled it towards the window.
     There was a crash of broken glass, the sun went out like a blown candle, the room rocked, I seemed a-smother in hot darkness, there was a noise like a beating of a great drum, and then I remember no more.
The little old man stopped and looked  at me.
"But," I said, "surely that is not the end: I do not understand."
"The end ?" he said sadly. "Well, I do not know what the end will be, and no better than you do I understand." He was silent for a minute, and then he went on heavily: "When next I knew anything I found myself here, a little manikin of wood in front of your clock. Here I have been for many years. I never see the blessed sunshine now, nor the flowers, nor hear the liddle birds. On grey days like these I must, willy nilly, come out of this dreadful wooden prison, and when it is fine I must stay in the darkness. And here, too, so close that I can almost touch her, my dear wife. But we never see one another, for her task is to come out when the days are fine; and, close as we are, we are yet more apart than life and death."
There was half a sob in his voice. I glanced quickly at him. He was moving. Suddenly the door behind him opened and he shot inside. Out of the other door came the quaint little old woman, Mary his wife.
     I turned and looked out of the window. Out of a deep blue sky a hot sun laughed down upon the sparkling sea; and over the happy waters the sea gulls wheeled and darted and screamed joyously.
With  a cry of delight , I climbed out of my low window and dropped to the rocks below.
Flinging off my clothes I waded into the sea; and presently was swimming and splashing madly in the warm waters of the little bay. And if the sea gulls were happier than I they were happy indeed.  

And that is it my children, the end. I would have loved for it to have ended with the young person, somehow managing to break the spell that Toby Matlin had put on William and Mary. But alas he didn't and as far as I know they are still there inside the little house, passing in and out of their own little doors. 
I have an idea, maybe if we all wish very hard, we can take the magic spell away, and they will be free to look after their animals......of course they will have to promise never, ever to argue again. Seligor. xxx


The Story of My Cotton Dress

Scanned from The Child Labour Bulletin, August, 1914.

I HAVE HAD another accident! A big tear in my pretty new dress. This time I want to mend it. When we went to Atlanta Georgia, a few weeks ago, and saw the beautiful white cotton fields, mother told me how little boys and girls must help make most of the stuff used for our dresses. I used to think all other children had good times, and that going to school was very hard. Now I know better. 

I appreciate my dresses more since I know that from the very beginning when the cotton is ripe in the hot sun, little boys and girls must pick it for my dresses, while their backs grow tired and their heads ache. Mother also took me to a cotton mill, on that trip. I saw how the cotton balls are brought to the mill and the fluffy soft white mass is combed and then spun from on bobbin another, until it is the finest thread like the ravelings from the tear in my new dress.


Little girl "spinners" walk up and down the long aisles, between the frames, watching the bobbins closely. When a thread breaks, the spinner must quickly tie the two ends together. Some people think that only children can do this quickly enough, but that is not so, for in a great many mills only grown-ups work. 

Mary is one of the spinners. She was very sad. Standing all day long, she said, had broken down Marythe arch of her foot and made her flatfooted, which is very painful.

Some people say it is good for the girls and boys to work—that all children should be industrious But they do not stop to think that there is a right and a wrong kind of work for little girls and boys. Spinning for a little while a day could be made the right kind, but work in a spinning room from 7 o'clock in the morning until 6 o'clock at night is the wrong kind. It keeps the children out of school, it gives them no chance to play, and they cannot grow strong.

Many spinning rooms have their windows closed all day because the rooms must be kept damp or the threads will break. Now, like growing plants, growing girls and boys need fresh air as well as light and sunshine. But there are more than a million children in this country who do not have fresh air, or play, or school because they are working. And of these there are enough in the cotton mills to make a big city full.

When a bobbin is filled, the "doffer boy" comes along, takes it off the spinning frame and puts an empty bobbin in its place.

Many doffer boys and girl spinners grow up without learning to read or write, and without even hearing of George Washington.

Sometimes the machine is so high and the boys are so little, they have to climb up to reach the bobbins. If they slip they can hurt themselves badly.

    Doffer         At last the thread is ready to be woven into cloth. It is put through a machine called the warper, which prepares the threads which run the length of the goods. I think the hardest work the girls in the mill did was to thread every one of these warp threads through a tiny hole to prepare them for the loom that weaves the cloth.

"Surely, mother," I said when we left the cotton mill , "little girls can't do any more work for a dress."Cutting

"Ah, yes, dear," she said, "it is in the making of the dress itself that little girls take a big part. The cloth you saw woven is sent to factories in other large cities. It is cut into dresses that are carried in bundles into tenement homes. And such homes! Often only one or two rooms for the whole family to cook and eat and sleep and sew in. Mothers sew the dresses, while their little girls help draw out the basting threads and sew on the buttons.

"Not long ago I read the story about Rose, nine years old. who sews buttons on little girls' dresses. Her mother used to make dolls dresses, and Rose had to snip them apart. She grew so tired of doing this for dolls for other little girls to play with, when she had no doll herself and when she wanted to read fairy stories, that what do you think she did? She snipped into the dolls' dresses with the scissors! So now her mother makes big dresses, for little girls, and Rose cannot use the scissors, but must work with a needle. She sews on 36 buttons to earn 4 cents."
"The scallops of the embroidery trimming little girls like so well for their dresses," mother continued, "are cut out by children in tenement houses. These little girls generally go to school, but often fall asleep over their lessons because they worked long after bedtime the night before,  and an hour or two before school in the morning.

  "The pretty ribbon trimmings are pulled through the dresses by children in still other tenement homes. You see, their mothers do not mean to be cruel, but they must pay rent and buy coal and bread and shoes with the money the children can earn. More cruel than these poor mothers were the people who, when the fathers were little boys, made them do work that taught them nothing; for now the fathers do not know how to earn enough money, and they are idle while the children work.    "If only everybody cared, and would not buy things that children make, the factory men would give the work to the fathers and not to the children."

 The Child Labour Bulletin, August, 1914. is almost 100 yrs old and yet many countries still use choild labour and many parents allow their children to go to work in the most terrible conditions, it is also a fact that if we cared at all about these little ones we could make a greater effort to stop this Slave Trade of the Twenty First Century and set the children free.

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Their wings were blue
 Calico Pie,
The little birds fly
Down to the calico tree,
Their wings were blue,
And they sang "Tilly-loo!"
Till away they flew,--
And they never came back to me!
They never came back!
They never came back!
They never came back to me!

Calico JamCalico FishCalico Jam,
The little fish swam
Over the syllabub sea.
He took off his hat,
To the Sole and the Sprat,
And the Willeby-wat,--
But he never came back to me!
He never came back!
He never came back!
He never came back to me!

Calico MiceCalico Ban,
The little Mice ran,
To be ready in time for tea,
Flippity flup,
They drank it all up,
And danced in the cup,--
But they never came back to me!
Calico Pie
They never came back!
They never came back!
They never came back to me!

Calico DrumCalico Drum,
The grasshoppers come,
The Butterfly, Beetle, and Bee,

Over the ground,Calico Butterfly
Around and round,
    With a hop and a bound,--
             But they never came back!
        They never came back!
     They never came back!
                                        They never came back to me

By the One and Only Edward Lear, Gosh he is (was) so wonderful and his poems are


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                 Here is another little surprise for all those
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                      SELIGOR'S CASTLE
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Elephant Jaboo and Suzy Shrew.

ELEPHANT JABOOElephant Jaboo and little Suzy Shrew were the best of friends and it was the fervent wish  of both of them that their companionship would never end.

Watching little Suzy climb up Jaboo's elongated snout to sit upon his head Oswald Owl had his doubts and winced to see young Suzy scamper in between great Jaboo's feet which, although they were quite graceful (for a full grown elephant) and always well manicured and neat, were, nevertheless, each six times wee Suzy's size and oft times did wise Oswald sigh and shake his round-eyed head to see the friends play 'Tag' or 'Chase' or 'Last man across the river today is dead!'Suzy Shrew

So perturbed was Oswald in fact he commissioned the master-gnome of Zhish to have his workers construct a whistle whereby Suzy might make known her movements - an elegant thing of jade and sun-dried liana with such a beautiful sound that even monkeys grew still in contemplation of its tone, quite forgetting to jabber and murmur.

Sydney SnakeBut alas, some forms of beauty quite excel their duty and Sydney Snake nursed a passionate desire to possess that whistle til it expunged all sense from his brain and one day, he just couldn't help himself, he devoured Suzy Shrew, whistle and all then lay in a coma (he had a Diploma) for almost a week, digesting his excessive zeal and thinking how best to disguise all evidence of his nefarious meal.

But it was no good - as soon as he spoke the whistle exploded and blew  through the vile serpent's throat. Jaboo at once woke from his own grief and mope and guessing then at poor Suzy's fate he stamped on the snake till Sydney resembled a glittering, wafer-thin plate. Jaboo never forgot his little friend Suzy and killed eveOswald  Owlry snake that he saw.

As for Oswald, though the result of his well-intentioned intervention struck in his craw he kept the full nature of his involvement to himself, pretending the whistle was the Gnome King's idea (even owls are less than perfect). In future he would keep his bright ideas to himself, he vowed.

And he kept his word. If ever you visit him in his tree cast your eye surreptitiously upward - there they are, kept in a jar, upon a high and padlocked shelf whose intricate key (fashioned by the Gnome King, no less) is buried in a secret place so Poor Suzyelusive that often even wise Oswald himself quite forgets where it is, so that sometimes, when he has a bright idea he has to carry it around for days and days before he can imprison it.

Once a year Elephant Jaboo bakes a special birthday cake to celebrate and remember little Suzy and even Oswald permits himself to eat a slice for Jaboo is an excellent cook and in such things even the wisest and most repentant of owls cannot always be choosy


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Trudi's Talesaxe with flint head.   PRESENTS :-


    Outside the cave the world was a blaze of white and green. From where he was sat in the shadow of the over-hanging rock Mo-ha could see a brilliant green and yellow lizard flashing out and in among the flints and stones that lay some little distance from the cave. 
  It was midday, and the  Sun burned high up in the heavens, pouring heat upon the Earth with a fierceness that drove all living things to seek shelter in the shadow of rock or tree. It was the early days of the world, when men lived in caves and trees, before speech as it is now known to us had been invented, and there were no adjectives and adverbs to worry the brains of little boys and girls.  
Speech at this time consisted almost entirely of nouns, names of things and people, so that when Mo-ha said "Food" he really meant "Is my dinner ready please?" so you see the people then used one word instead of many, after all that's what we do when we text today. You would probably have wondered at Mo-ha and his look, for although he was almost twelve he was the size of a nine year old, he was covered in short, fine hair, the face, hands, and inside of the arms being the only parts of his body entirely free; his eyes were smal, deeply sunk and set close together; his nose was flat and broad, with only the merest suggestion of a bridge; his ears large and slightly pointed at the top. But, so small Mo-ha was much stronger than one would think to look at his thin legs and arms. He could leap farther and run faster than most men can nowadays. He could climb and run from tree to tree through the grest forests that existed then almost as fast you or I could walk along a country road. He could hang from his toes from the branch of a tree for ages and shin up the face of a rock like a lightening flash.

    Behind Mo-ha, half asleep and half awake, lay Nee-na , Mo-ha's little sister, a year younger than Mo-ha himself. From time to time her eyes, which were large and very intelligent in their expression, would open and shut like a cat's, as she watched her brother. There was no change, however, in Mo-ha's attitude, and at last Nee-na raised herself from the cool earth and placed her hand upon the boy's shoulder, and though she used only one word, she was probably asking him what he was thinking?

      Mo-ha made no answer, but, picking up a straight, sharp stick that lay close beside him, he flung it at the lizard, and Nee-na laughed and rubbed her hairy little toes together with delight.   The Sun had fallen down the sky for some time  - and it would be about four o'clock in the afternoon  when Mo-ha accompanied by Nee-na, left the coolness of the cave and walked to where the stick he had thrown still remained, apparently stuck in the ground.     
  When Mo-ha lifted the stick he was greatly surprised to see a stone, a flint sticking on the end of it. Somehow the end of the stick had opened and the stone was wedged in the top, at that moment Mo-ha hadn't realised what he had made, quite by accident but, then, that is quite how many a tool has come into being. Immediately Mo-ha picked it up and without any more ado he swung it round his head a few times and bought it down, hard on a fallen log. They both jumped as the flint hit the log and cut into it like it was a rotten.

      Mo-ha was delighted with his new, hmm! axe, and carried it proudly as he and Nee-na  made there way to the spring to drink some water before settling down to sleep for the night hours.      
    They were half way to the spring, Mo-ha slightly in front when Nee-na, who sensed danger quicker than her brother stopped suddenly with a warning hiss. A heavy musk like odour met Mo-ha's nostrils seconds later and quickly he sprang to the nearest tree and climbed hastily up to the topper-most branches, he moved that fast, it seemed he was being hauled up by a hidden rope. Nee- na was at the same time reaching the upper-most branches of a mighty palm like tree, which she was closest too when sensing danger.

   The next moment the Striped One, old Sabre-tooth the tiger, broke through the dense, fern-like underbrush, and stood immediately below the tree in which Nee-na cowered in complete terror.
It might have been the fact that the tree had very few branches on its long trunk that made it mighty awkward for the Old one to climb, or it could have been the movement Mo-ha made as he settled his-self  in the top branches, whatever the tiger turned away from the tree the girl was in and walked over to the tree Mo-ha was in, axe in hand, clinging with all four limbs he waited.  With one mighty spring the great beast flung itself upward to where the tree broke into two giant arms, which stretched outwards into the form of a giant Y.
    The tigers claws missed the fork by a few inches and he fell backwards. The claws of the huge beast scored and tore the bark of the tree until they met a slight knot in the scored trunk. Here he clung for a second or two and then the powerful hind feet, getting a firmer hold, propelled his snarling, growling body towards the fork.
It was on the larger of the two branches that Mo-ha had sought safety, he had then chosen another branch that grew straight upwards from the main branch, was it a natural sense of survival these young Palaeolithic children had that by instinct they knew the safest way to climb.  The smooth, rounded branch, somewhat thicker that a mans arm and growing almost at a right angle from its main limb made it impossible to climb, nor even able to hold his weight.
       The tiger flung his mighty head backward and fixed its cold, terrifying stare at Mo-ha. The look was so horrible that poor Mo-ha tightened his grip on the tree shivering with fear. Nee-na, high up in the next tree, spome twenty feet above the ensuing duel. She could see her brother clinging with hand and foot. Nee-na shouted words to her brother, with an urgency that said, come climb down he can't get you from there. 
   Mo-ha had already noticed he way to escape before the Tiger, but instead of making good his eascape, he shouted down to the beast.
"Ha, ha!" he cried. "The Striped One comes for his meat - and there is none!" The sound of his voice roused the tiger, Ha-ha, ha-ha!" joined in Nee-na with her shrill voice, "There is no meat, she repeated. "The Striped One comes for meat, and there is none!     
      Mo-ha laughed again, and tearing off a small branch, he flung it at the tiger's head. Doing this made the tiger even more and he swiped at the branch on which hung Mo-ha. The branch quivered and shook with the force of the blow and Mo-ha, completely taken by surprise, almost fell into the gaping jaws waiting for him just ten feet away. Again and again the tiger struck the branch, uttering loud roars all the time and reaing himself up to his full height.     
     The branch creaked and groaned, and Mo-ha struck with terror looked wildly round for another place to hide. The only branch near enough to bear his weight was some ten to twelve feet away and although the distance was no trouble, Mo-ha knew that the strain added to his weight on hitting the branch could possibly snap and send it and him down to the ground.
Carefully he lowered himself a little lower down the branch, to try to avoid the jars and swings which threatened when he hurled himself into space.
    But the relief was light, and Mo-ha knew that he would end up being thrown to the ground anyway if the tiger continued his present tactics. It was as though the Tiger read his mind, for he began to pound the branch harder that tore the bark away and promised disaster.
Suddenly a great rage filled the heart of Mo-ha.
  His eyes burned red; his lips parted, showing his long canine teeth in a vicious snarl; the long hair on his neck and spine bristled with fear and anger. He seized  the axe in both hands, and loosening his hold a little, slid several feet nearer to where the brute vented it's spite and hate on the branch.
Astonished by the manoeuvre the tiger stopped beating the tree and stared wonderingly at the boy.
 Like a flash Mo-ha whirled the axe above his head, and, holding on only with his knees and feet, he brought the axe down with all the force he could muster upon the huge paw resting on the branch.
The keen edge of the flint shore through the bone and muscle, cutting two of the great claws completely off, and burying the axe head a full half inch into the branch. The tiger rose in the air, mad with pain and surprise, turned completely over, and, clawing and biting furiously at everything within reach, fell down to the ground.
     " He is dead! The Striped One is dead"! sang Nee-na joyfully.

A  nd sure enough, the Sabre tooth was dead. It had fallen across a hidden stump, which had snapped its spine like a rotten carrot, and for the first time in history, a boy and an axe had proved superior to old Sabre-tooth, the Striped One, the terror of the human race.

I wonder if that could really have happened, what do you think children? Hugs Seligor. xxx

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Trudi's Tales
A page made by Trudi's of things that maybe you won't know of, till now.
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The Rich Man and the Poor Man

A rich man and a poor man sat beneath the pink and lemon blossom trees of Spring.
The rich man said:
"Ah the scent of these trees gives me a headache. I am not too dull a fellow that my mind does not tell me how beautiful it is. But then I begin to think of how I might buy up this land so that the trees are exclusively mine and then I might find somehow to bottle that delicious perfume and market it."
"You do not need the money," said the poor man. "I would bring my ailing daughter here that she might look at the wonderful colour and smell the delicious scent, but she is very sickly and the perfume would overpower her."
   The rich man mopped his brow with a silk handkerchief embroidered and sewn with precious jewels. A thought struck him. He pulled out a second handkerchief, just as beautiful as the first. He offered it to the poor man.
"Take this." he cried, "Put it over your daughters mouth that the heady perfume of the pink and lemon blossom be not too strong for her chest and senses!"

     The poor man looked abashed and pondered thoughtfully. Finally, and not without some consternation, he spoke:
"I thankyou, Sir, but alas, I cannot; I am, you see, to proud to accept such a magnifiscent gift."

     In the amiable silence that followed, a brace of pale-green winged zephyrs disported in the mellow afternoon sunlight, a golden canary settled on a clump of pink blossom and a fire-bird alighted on a branch positively efflorescent with startling lemon petals, where it promptly fell asleep.
   The rich man called his servant, who produced a bag containing a flask of wine, a loaf of bread, and a selection of dried figs and apricots. The poor man deigned to share the welcome feast.
"When I was a young merchant, and still quite slim," said the rich man, "I  often thought of travelling to some far distant land, of finding a proud and beautiful princess there, and then woo her.   She would have been fine boned and delicate, with lustrous chestnut hair, decorated and perfumed with pink and lemon blossom."
   He produced two bright red apples and offered one to the poor man. A sigh escaped his well rounded form. He simply could not stop his mind from hatching new and convoluted schemes to make a profit from those blossom-trees.

"Blossom is fine," said the poor man, "but fruit sits better on an empty stomach.
My own wife was a beauty in her day, her voice as sweet as apples once, before she took to working everyday in the Linen-factory; but autumn follows summer, just as summer follows spring. Sweet apples can turn sour out of season and a sweet temper turn to tantrums. A sour apple can give a fellow a belly-ache in his head.

     In his hovel, the poor man's daughter coughed into a filthy rag.
Through a hole in the wall she watched the pink and lemon blossom on the trees, softly moving on the scented breeze.
In the rich man's palace, his cooks were beginning to prepare his evening meal.
"I must be going," said the poor man, and thanked .his companion for the afternoon repast. In his pocket he carried a half-eaten apple to give to his daughter.

The rich man nodded, and summoning his servant, he made to mount his horse.
"Blossom-jam," he was thinking. "The resin of the bark seems thick and pungent. Perhaps it has some medicinal properties........

Meanwhile, the fire-bird
had awoken and was eyeing the chattering canary with significant disfavour.
"Can't a chap get any sleep around here," he grumbled. and shook his magnificent feathers.

In the distance, the evening whistle blew at the Linen-factory and presently, a thin line of gaunt and tired women emerged into the gathering dusk.

More from the pen of Willowdown©.

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The Autumn of My Years




From the veranda of Harambee, which is the Swahili name for the home I lived in during my stay in Kenya. Often I could stand for minutes at a time, watching the sun setting.
The year was nineteen sixty four, with one child, a daughter, her name Sheena. She, sleeping in the arms of my Ayah and friend Ameena, a Somali tribes-woman, lying comfortably, wrapped in her flowing gown. The two of us just standing, watching the sun herself going to sleep beneath the horizon. 
A golden ball of orange and red that settled quietly on a thin line of black, then shimmering and shaking like a huge round jelly not knowing which way to roll.
There she would sit a while, as the universe closed in beginning with the tiny rivulets, like red tentacles would stretch from side to side.
These followed by larger rivers of golden and lemon waves churning, tumbling, cascading over each other each trying to reach the far reaches of the horizon first.
But stop! what are those streaks of blue floating above these rivers ofgold, should they be there in the sky, now? Do they not know that it is the onset of night, not the rebirth of morning? There, they have gone now, swallowed up by the vermilion tentacles that
Maasi Warriors
reached out and dragged them into its fold. Now the sun has sunk more than half way beneath the horizon and she looks like a massive fried egg, sunny sideup. Enough to feed the whole of the starving masses in this beautiful but cruel environment.

Another of Mr. Richard Wasike beautiful paintings of the Maasai Tribesmen.
To the west of us, towersthe giant outline of Mount Kilimanjaro, it fills the sky. There is an eerie glow about her as the crimson rays of the sun, kiss the far side of the mountain.       Suddenly the silhouettes of an Elephant family cross the horizon, totally in step as they crossed the open grassland.Several groups of Maasai tribesmen passed by beneath the veranda, their beauty hidden by the descending darkness. Tall and graceful like gazelles. And that's the men the women are even more beautiful. I listen to their voices and know already that I shall be sorry to leave this land.

     All this has passed within the spate of 15 minutes and the poached egg has
now completely vanished from sight.

Maasai woman

Ameena moves
the boy from one arm to the other, "It is getting cold Mensab time for us to go inside now." Oh gosh I shall miss her just as much. We had become such good friends.
It is now very dark and already the other side of the equator has come alive as she sends her halo of morn
ing glory earthwards.

September, 1964©

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