Magical Stripey Beasts

Magical Stripey Beasties feature in the fairy storybook “The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen”.

Ivy Lion uses their hair in her paintbrushes and in return she touches up their stripes when they start looking a little tatty. However, Ivy is not fond of this job because these beasties are a tad smelly (especially to a teeny fairy) and they tend to flick her with their tails every now and then too – mistaking her for a fly!

I guess it does not take too much imagination to realize that these MSBs are the gorgeous zebra that roam freely around Faerie Glen.

Did you know that the stripe patterns on each and every zebra are totally unique (a bit like a finger print) and that this is how zebra foals recognize their mothers.

Sometimes the zebs hang out in places where it is really easy to see them and other times they are completely elusive. Often we spot them from the top of the hill, but by the time we get down again they have moved on. I have yet to take a decent photo of them. Usually they blend into the bush so well you can barely see them and you land up with a picture of an extremely well camouflaged creature.

These fabulous photos were taken by a gentleman who regularly walks in the nature reserve – Martinus (Tienie) Cronje. Thanks very much for sharing them with us.

A portion of the proceeds of all the book sales (both printed copies and eBooks) will be donated to the Friends of Faerie Glen Nature Reserve. They are in desperate need of funds to maintain and upgrade the boundary fence that keeps these magnificent animals enclosed. The thought of one of them landing up on a major highway is too terrible to contemplate and we’d like to help as much as we can.

Here’s the question…

Are these magical beasties white with black stripes or…
Are they black with white stripes?

Makes you think doesn’t it!

FYI – The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen eBook will be on sale from the 26th December to the 1st January 2018 – and will only cost R$1.50 instead of the usual $2.99.  If you want a real book – feel free to order one here.

Ever wondered where fairies spend a penny?

Too funny…  the thought of fairies piddling and pooping is generally not uppermost in one’s mind. Not ever, when writing 90 odd pages of The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen, over several months, did I even once consider it.

Yet on my insomnomaniacal trawling through interesting fairy-related stuff on Instagram I found that some incredibly innovative person – Denise of  Dingley Dwellings – had come up with exactly that… a lovely little loo for the fairies.

Had to muffle my face in the pillow to avoid waking up the entire house – because my first reaction was to snort out laughing and my second was OMG! That is beyond cute! Did you ever?

Of course thereafter I could easily imagine Marigold, Bella Dew and Winona Wurm flushing stardust down that beautiful little bog in some leafy corner of Faerie Glen Nature Reserve.  I could even imagine the mischievous little worms peeking into those heart-shaped windows. Although I reckon Madame Shews would insist on having her own “powder room” – the snooty old baggage.

Dingley Dwellings have many other delicious little (and not so little) morsels of fairy stuff that you absolutely have to go and look at. They have a  website and are happy to undertake commissions as well.  You can also follow them on Facebook.

Their delightful dwellings get used for all sorts of interesting things, like water features and solar lights – but I pilfered this paragraph from the tips and suggestions section of their website because it simply tickled me pink!


“We weren’t aware of this, but a lady customer with small children who had owned a dwelling for several years said that when her little ones lose their first teeth, instead of placing them under the pillow as is customary, the teeth are now placed beneath the dwelling. IT WORKS! In the morning the tooth is gone and in its place – a fairy payment! We’ve tried it with our grandchildren and can confirm this is the case – and it is so much easier for the fairies! (None of that fishing around beneath a pillow in the middle of the night!) Another top tip – thanks again!”


When I was growing up we had a mouse and our teeth were lovingly placed in a slipper at the foot of our bed. I continued the same tradition with my own children. Just the other day I had the mouse vs fairy conversation with two of my sister’s-in-law. I lost.

Who would you vote for – Tooth Fairy or the Tooth Mouse?

 

 

Whimsical Hollow

I was trawling around Instagram in the middle of the night – as I often do when I can’t sleep – and I came across the most delightful collection of fairy houses. Little magical gems that you want to dive into, open the door, stroll around the inside of the house and meet the occupants.

Judge for yourself…

Turns out Haley started making these little creations around nine months ago.  She works full time and back then she was also planning a wedding and studying part time for a degree in business management. She really needed something to do that wasn’t any of those things, something stress free.

Says Haley, “I’ve always loved anything whimsical so I thought I would try making my own fairy house and now I’m addicted! I wasn’t planning on making them to sell as I get attached to everyone that I make, but I’m running out of room now so I had to have to start selling them.”

She’s also looking at starting tutorials on how she makes them. Everyone she makes is unique and special to her so it’s really hard to see them go! Her attention to detail is absolutely amazing.

Haley is going to read The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen when she gets some time and she’s going to think about possibly creating a fairy house for one of the characters from the Glen. Maybe a birds nest fairy house for Proffy… or something for Granny Catty?

You can follow Haley and her fairy houses on Instagram .  She’s based in Germany – so if anybody out there wants to invest in a Christmas present that will totally delight somebody – young or old – contact her.

Birthday Blog for Lovely Lisa

In our book, The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen, there is a character called Winona Wurm. She is the soft-hearted, kick-ass fairy in the Glen who loves animals and looks after them when they need some TLC. She’s also a tad strange because she really loves her naughty little worms.

Because Lisa is the lady who gives the animal science lectures and is pretty soft-hearted and extremely kick-ass herself, we decided to model Winona Wurm after our gorgeous friend.

Don’t you think this drawing Igz (illustrator of our book) did does Lisa justice? From the long flowing locks, to the cropped top, right down to those trendy boots – or snugs as they are known in the Glen.

Dynamite definitely does come in small packages!

Lisa has been involved with the Imaginaeries ever since I first asked her to read the story and give some honest feedback – long before the eBook was published.

I guess she liked the book because her comment after reading was… “Ginny! I’m almost done with your book! Can I please be your PR lady for it? It’s that good! I’m willing to put my neck on the line for it” 

Hells yeah!  And what a seriously classy PR lady to have on our Imaginaeries team.

Well my friend, this is for you – immortalized in the Imaginaeries!

Have a fabulous birthday and may the coming sun-circle lavish upon you only good, happy and magical things.

Lots of love,

Ginny, Igz and all the Imaginaeries in the Glen (especially the worms!)

xxxx

 

Launch of “The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen” on 25th November 2017 @14h00

The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen will be launched in the very same nature reserve where this story is set!

On Saturday 25th November, between 2 and 4 pm you are invited to come and spend some time in the Glen and imagine your own fairies.

Or try your hand at hula-hooping and see if you are as good as Ivy Lion. (No – this is not only for kids – adults are welcome to try too!)

Go on a fairy walk and see if you can spot some magical stripey beasts, or maybe one of the other furry critters that lurk in the bushes. You might even see Frederique…

Hmmm…. You are wondering who Frederique is, aren’t you? You’ll have to come to the launch and buy the book or ask the author.  Or you could buy the eBook on Amazon now already if you can’t wait that long to find out.

There will be other magical fun stuff too.

Normal Faerie Glen Nature Reserve rates apply: Pre- schoolers are free; R6 (children 6-12y); R6 (pensioners); R11 (adults 13 – 60y).  A portion of the sales on the books will also be donated to the Friends of Faerie Glen Nature Reserve.

Pre-Order your own signed copy NOW!

It gets even better – everybody who either buys a book on the day or pre-orders a copy of The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen goes into a lucky draw and stands a chance to win this adorable little Ribbets Ridge fairy house to start your own fairy garden. (Kindly sponsored by Fairy Wonderland Suppliers.) Special launch price is R100 and they will all be signed too. The real books have delightful illustrations – although we’d prefer it if you imagined your own fairies! They will make gorgeous Christmas presents.

It’s really easy to pre-order – just click on the link.

 

Want to write a review?

But that’s not all… if perhaps you have already read The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen – and you’d like to write a review (either on Amazon or email it to Ginny and she’ll post it as a blog) you’ll go into the lucky draw and stand a chance to win this particular one of Igz special one-of-a-kind Imaginaerie dolls by the name of Poppy Mars.  (Igz, the illustrator, is not only an artist on paper but is also fabulous when it comes to creating other wonderful things too.)

 

 

Want to know more about what’s in the book…

Amid the hustle and bustle of daily life in the Glen, the Imaginaeries are also getting ready for The Ball – a glittery event that takes place at the first new moon after the leaves have fallen. But will PESCOM come to the party?

Ivy Lion makes Gogo Gaia very angry when she experiments with colour and Winona Wurm’s mischievous pets are given the ultimate warning at the Moonlight Meeting. Marigold discovers that not everybody is sunshine-flavoured. Madame Shews, the snooty French shoe designer is up to something for sure and the Bollywoggles are keeping an eye on her. Mor-a-Bella escaped from a cabbage bog but is life going to be any better in the Glen? Will Pete the Publisher ever perfect his environmentally friendly newspaper? Can Granny Catty convince Mr Grumpy Pants to stop being a hermit and accompany her to The Ball?

Meanwhile things keep disappearing… could there be a thief in the Glen?

The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen is a whimsical fairy story set in a real nature reserve in Pretoria, South Africa.

Feel free to contact Ginny if you want any more information.  Remember you can like The Imaginaeries on Facebook too!

Red Paintbrush

Clearly Ivy Lion has been very busy in the glen lately. Check out this magnificent flower that I spotted nestled in the bush.

It’s called a Red Paintbrush. In Afrikaans – a Poeierkwas (Scadoxus puniceus) and according to Leafy Lou aka Louise (yes – there really is such a person who is a bit like the custodian of the glen) this lovely plant is sadly declining due to habitat destruction and harvesting.

It’s sad to think that some people actually steal plants out of the Faerie Glen Nature Reserve.

Gogo Gaia (the Imaginaeries’ leader of the glen) is going to have to be more watchful in future and think up a suitable punishing spell to cast on those humans who do such a wicked thing!

If you live in Pretoria – do yourself a favor, take a hike in this gorgeous nature reserve and check out all the flowers and wildlife – not only are there Magical Stripey Beasties but there’s a variety of other bokkies and little creatures. It’s a fabulous venue for bird-watchers too.

For those who live elsewhere in the world – we’d love to hear about your local nature reserve or any place where you get out and sniff the fresh air. Pictures and guest blogs are very welcome.

Marigold… the sunshine-flavoured fairy.

By now you all know that my daughter Igz is illustrating the print version of The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen!

When I say illustrating, I mean little sketches – what we really want is for you to use your imagination and magic up your own version of the fairies.

Slowly but surely this really is happening. Really… it is. Or it had better be.

She brings them to me one by one. Usually I have to beg for the latest masterpiece.

Unless it is a Sunday morning and then she’s hovering around outside our bedroom window, sending whats apps with beggy hands saying “When OH WHEN are you getting up you lazy baggage!!???”.

(In case you are wondering, Igz lives in a flatlet on the property – she has keys to the house, obviously, and sometimes leaves little illustrated presents for me on my laptop.)

We are breaking the mold of fairies. There are no cute little fluffy dresses and sparkly bows. Instead, the Imaginaeries roam quietly around the Glen in spotted sneekers and comfy snugs. They wear trendy leggings and jeans with little cropped tops. They have wing-piercings, tattoos and all sorts of other fabulously jazzy stuff. They are free-spirited and outspoken.

Judge for yourself…

This is the final version of Marigold.

 

Origami Fairy Lanterns by Suzelle

The Imaginaeries are uniquely South African… what with the interwebs, PESCOM, hooligan taxis and Faerie Glen Nature Reserve.

So is Suzelle.

Suzelle is a national asset and makes these DIY videos which are not only hysterical, but actually very useful and informative too. She is beyond fabulous, very funny and incredibly well loved.

You really do have to see her to believe her.

She not only makes DIY videos by herself and with her assistant “Marianne”, but she often involves various celebrities in her projects and mercilessly rips them off in her typical Suzelle fashion.

I adore her videos and frequently waste lots of time giggling and snorting into my laptop watching and re-watching when I should be working. Igz, the illustrator (if she ever actually finishes them – f*k!) does the most marvelous impersonation of Suzelle’s distinctive accent and wit.

Go on – spoil yourself for half and hour or so – watch and learn!

Anyway – I remembered Suzelle made a video last year on making origami fairy lights together with White on Rice (a brand centered around the ancient Japanese art of origami) and wanted to share it with you – seeing as this website is all about fairies and imagination.

If you make some of these fairy lights – please post pics on the Imaginaeires facebook site. There will be an signed (by me, sadly, not by Suzelle!!) hard copy of The Imaginaeries of Faerie Glen as a prize for the most imaginative lights – in time for Christmas.

Materials needed:  Fairy lights, coloured paper, washy tape, your hands!