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The Little

Gingerbread Man
Written and Illustrated by Carol Moore
Once upon a time there was an old woman who
loved baking gingerbread. She would bake
gingerbread cookies, cakes, houses and gingerbread
people, all decorated with chocolate and peppermint,
caramel candies and colored frosting.
She lived with her husband on a farm at the edge
of town. The sweet spicy smell of gingerbread
brought children skipping and running to see what
would be offered that day.
Unfortunately the children gobbled up the treats
so fast that the old woman had a hard time keeping
her supply of flour and spices to continue making the
batches of gingerbread. Sometimes she suspected
little hands of having reached through her kitchen
window because gingerbread pieces and cookies
would disappear. One time a whole gingerbread
house vanished mysteriously. She told her husband,
"Those naughty children are at it again. They don't
understand all they have to do is knock on the door
and I'll give them my gingerbread treats."

One day she made a special batch of gingerbread

men because they were extra big. Unfortunately for
the last gingerbread man she ran out of batter and
he was half the size of the others.
She decorated the gingerbread men with care, each
having socks, shirt and pants of different colors.
When it came to the little gingerbread man she felt
sorry for him and gave him more color than the
others. "It doesn't matter he's small," she thought,
"He'll still be tasty."
Putting the rack on the kitchen windowsill she left it
there to cool and went to finish her laundry. The

gingerbread men lay quietly, their frosted eyes gazing at

the sky with its puffy clouds.
At that moment a voice came from nowhere. "Get up.
Get up. Come with me."

Everyone looked to see who was speaking.

It was a butterfly flying just outside the window.
Butterflies are naturally beautiful, but her wings
were an exceptionally pretty marbled blue.
"Come with me," she urged again.
The gingerbread men didn't react except to keep

staring. All but the smallest gingerbread man who

jumped up from the tray and leaped off the kitchen
windowsill onto the grass below faster than you
could say "hurry."
"Where are we going?" he asked breathlessly.
"Away." And before the butterfly had finished speaking
children appeared in the yard. Spying the little
gingerbread man they started shrieking with delight and
began chasing him.

"Stop, stop," they shouted. "We want to eat you."

But with his little legs churning the gingerbread

man only ran faster. He yelled,
"I won't stop.
Run, run as fast as you can.
You can't catch me.
I'm the gingerbread man."
And truly those children could not catch him. Once
out of their sight he continued running until he had
reached a pasture where two horses were grazing. He
sat down on a rock near the fence.
"Don't stop," said the butterfly fluttering nearby.
"I want to rest," he argued.
That was a mistake as one of the horses trotted over to the
fence and whinnied. "Oh you smell so good little
gingerbread man. Come over here so I can smell you

The little gingerbread man shook his head, but

suddenly that horse jumped the fence and began
galloping after him, so he had to run even faster. He
called out,
"I outran children and I'll outrun you.
Run, run as fast as you can.
You can't catch me.
I'm the gingerbread man."
And truly, that horse could not catch him.
The next time he rested the little gingerbread man
took care to lie amongst the grass well off the road
where no one would see him.
"Everybody wants to eat me," he complained to the

butterfly. "Do you want to eat me, too?"

Laughing she answered. "I love the smell of
gingerbread. It's better than my favorite flowers. But
I sip nectar, not gingerbread. Besides, you're my
friend and friends don't eat friends."
Pleased to hear that he had a friend the little gingerbread
man was about to reply when again they were interrupted.
A farmer's dog with a keen nose had come to investigate.
Licking his muzzle at the sight of the gingerbread man, the
dog said.
"Excuse me for interrupting, but little gingerbread man
you look so good. I mean tired. Please stay awhile and rest
if you like."

As the dog talked, he stepped closer and closer. The

closer he stepped, the more nervous became the little
gingerbread man. When the butterfly flitted from her
grass perch in alarm, the little gingerbread man took
off running with the dog nipping at his tiny heels. He
"I outran children. I outran a horse,
and I'll outrun you, too.
Run, run as fast as you can.
You can't catch me.
I'm the gingerbread man."
And truly that dog could not catch him.
At last the little gingerbread man and the butterfly
reached a stream.
It wasn't a very big stream unless you are a tiny
gingerbread man. To him it was a river. From out
behind a bush sauntered a red fox stopping to stretch
because he had just awakened from a nap. Looking at
the gingerbread man he said nonchalantly, "May I
help you?"
The butterfly was quick to respond. "No thank you.
We're going to fly across this stream. We don't need
your help."
Smiling, the wily fox glanced at the butterfly before
turning to the little gingerbread man, "You're going to

carry him? I've no doubt Ms. Butterfly that you have good
intentions, but you're only a bug. You couldn't carry
anything anywhere, let alone this gingerbread man across
the stream. You'll drop him. I guarantee it!"
The little gingerbread man was confused. He knew that
his butterfly friend had good intentions but could she
really carry him? He doubted it. Her wings were so thin
and delicate. The thought of him falling into the cold water
and crumbling to damp bits was frightening. He said to the
fox, "I outran children. I outran a horse, and I outran a
dog. Will you keep me safe and not eat me?"
"Of course!" the wily fox quickly assured him before the
butterfly could object. "I eat only meat and I had a full
meal just before my nap. Here, ride on my bushy tail. Let's
go before I change my mind."
So the little gingerbread man climbed onto the fox's tail
and they entered the water.

Unfortunately the fox's tail began dipping into the

water. "You're too heavy for my tail, he said. Climb
onto my back."
The little gingerbread man did as he was asked.
But the water began creeping up the fox's back
forcing the little gingerbread man to climb higher to
the fox's neck. "That's not good enough, I'm afraid,"
said the wily fox. "Climb to my head."
Now the little gingerbread man was terrified, but

what could he do? He climbed to the fox's ears.

"Oh, little gingerbread man, you have to climb onto my
nose," insisted the wily fox, "otherwise I can't help you.
Don't you see the water is getting even deeper?"
So the little gingerbread man reluctantly climbed onto
the fox's nose. The moment he did, that wily fox tossed
him into the air, opening his jaws wide with anticipation.
The little gingerbread man's eyes rounded with fear
because he knew he was going to be eaten. It didn't matter
now how fast he could run.

But the little gingerbread man and the wily fox had

forgotten about the butterfly. She swooped into that

fox's jaws, grabbing her friend by one leg and
rescuing him from an awful fate. She flew higher and
higher until the stream and the fox were but spots on
the landscape.
"You can carry me," cried the little gingerbread
"Yes," she answered. "I'm stronger than you could
imagine. Now I'll take you somewhere safe."

She flew with him over farm fields and forests and even
mountains. It felt like they had been in the sky forever
when they reached a lake, its waters calm like pale glass.
There was an island in the middle of the lake lined with
forest trees. And among the trees was where the butterfly
took the little gingerbread man. She flew down, down, and
down until they came to the foot of a pine tree.
The little gingerbread man could not believe his eyes.
Beneath that pine tree was the most beautiful gingerbread
Through the front door of the gingerbread house came a
gingerbread man and a gingerbread woman. Seeing the
butterfly and her companion they smiled excitedly waving
their gingerbread hands.
"Oh, what have you brought us?" cried the gingerbread
woman. Evidently she knew the butterfly very well.

"I think that's obvious, dear" said the gingerbread

man. "She's brought us a gingerbread boy. Do you
realize that now we can be the family we always
It was true. The butterfly had intended all along to
bring these three together. The little gingerbread
man had not known that he was, in reality, a
gingerbread boy. It was all so sudden, but wonderful.
When both his gingerbread parents each gave him a
loving hug he knew he was home.
The gingerbread family went inside their gingerbread
house to celebrate with the butterfly remaining outside on

the roof. She was content just smelling the gingerbread

and sitting there quietly, whether it was day or night.

They all lived happily ever after.

by Karen Lewis
Illustrated by Michael S. Weber

Not long ago and not far away there was a

beautiful, big teddy bear who sat on a shelf in
a drug store waiting for someone to buy him
and give him a home.
His name was Wolstencroft. And he was no
ordinary bear.

His fur was a lovely shade of light grey, and

he had honey colored ears, nose and feet. His
eyes were warm and kind and he had a
wonderfully wise look on his face.
Wolstencroft looked very smart in a brown
plaid waistcoat with a gold satin bow tie at his
Attached to the tie was a tag with his name
written in bold, black letters: Wolstencroft.
He had arrived in the store just before Christmas
when there had been a lovely big tree in the
window, all decorated with fairy lights. Yards and

yards of sparkling tinsel had been draped over

everything, and holiday music had been playing all
the time. Wolstencroft was especially fond of Jingle
Bells. He liked its light, tinkling sounds. It always
made him feel merry.
At that time there had been lots of other bears to
keep him company. In fact, there had been so
many teddy bears crowded onto that one narrow
shelf that he had scarcely had room to move.

But, one by one they had all gone. Gleefully

waving goodbye as they were carried off to their
new homes. Until finally, he was the only teddy
bear left in the entire store.
He had hoped that Santa Claus would drop by
on Christmas Eve and deliver him to a good home.
But he hadn't. Santa had been too busy that year,
delivering even more presents than usual.

Wolstencroft felt sad and lonely sitting there all

by himself on the shelf that was high above the
Christmas cards. He longed to have a child take
him home and love him and play with him. But,
most of all, to hug him. For no hug is ever too big
for a teddy bear.
He was trying hard not to cry because he knew
that tears would make his eyes all puffy and red
and then he would have even less chance of
finding a home.
But why oh why didn't someone choose him?
Why, he wondered, was he passed over so
many times for other less beautiful bears?
Then one day, shortly before Easter, three bunny
rabbits were placed on the shelf beside him.
They all had very big ears and feet and long
legs. All three were wearing woolen sweaters.
Rita Rabbit wore a pink sweater. Roger Rabbit a
green one. And Ronnie wore blue.
Roger and Ronnie were twins, and Rita was their
"My you are a handsome bear," Rita told
Wolstencroft after the store had closed for the

night. "I'm surprised that no one has bought you

and taken you home."
"So am I," replied Wolstencroft and, although he
tried very hard to stop it, a tear rolled down his
furry cheek.
Ronnie and Roger had jumped down off the
shelf and were playing tag up and down the aisles.
"Be careful and don't knock anything over," Rita
called to them.

Rita looked closely at Wolstencroft from every

angle. She peered into his face and circled around
him, her nose twitching. He had noticed that
bunnies' noses twitch a lot. Then she sat down and
remained deep in thought for a very long time.
"Well," he asked her, unable to stand the
suspense any longer. "What do you think is wrong
with me? Why doesn't anyone want to buy me?"
"It must be your name," Rita answered.

"My name!" exclaimed Wolstencroft.

what's wrong with my name?"


"Oh, there's nothing wrong with your name,"

Rita replied. "Wolstencroft is a wonderful name, but
it's too long for some people to say. Not everyone
can pronounce it properly."
Now Wolstencroft had always been able to say
his name correctly. But then, it was his very own
name and everyone can say his or her own name.
At least he thought that they could. Not when they
are very little, of course. He couldn't say his name
when he was a tiny baby bear. But after he had
started going to school he knew it very well.
"Wolstencroft," the teacher would call out. "Will
you recite the alphabet for us today?"
And he would name all the letters from A to Z.
All 26 of them. He was a very smart bear.
On Easter Sunday, very early just after the store
had opened, a Mommy and Daddy bought Roger
and Ronnie for their twin boys.

"They look nice," Rita said. She was happy that

her brothers had found a good home but felt sad,
too, because she was beginning to miss them
At the front of the store a table had been set up
with chocolate Easter eggs. And as it was now
Easter Sunday, they had been marked down to half

After everyone had gone home for the day,

Wolstencroft picked the nicest egg he could find
and gave it to Rita, to cheer her up.
They shared the egg, sucking on the sweet
creamy chocolate and making sure it didn't get
onto their clothes.
Then they started to talk about the name
Wolstencroft again.
"I wouldn't want to change it," Wolstencroft
declared. " I mean it's me. I've had it all my life.
"But if it's stopping you from getting a home,"
Rita insisted. "You may have to."
She hopped over to the book department and
returned with a book called What to Name Baby.
Then she began reading out the names she
thought might suit Wolstencroft.
"What about Adrian?" she suggested. "It's a
lovely name, very dignified."
But Wolstencroft shook his head.
"Well, what do you think of Bernard? It actually
means brave as a bear."

But Wolstencroft was not impressed.

So Rita left the B's and began flipping through
the pages of the book, reading out a name for each
letter of the alphabet starting with C.

"Clive, David, Edwin, Francis, Graham, Howard,

Ivan, Jeremy, Keith, Leonard, Miles, Nathan, Oliver,
Percy, Quentin, Rodney, Selwyn, Timothy, Ulysses,
Vincent, Winston."

And here she stopped because the names

beginning with X, Y and Z: Xavier, Yves and
Zachary, were too difficult to pronounce. There was
no sense in taking a name that was even harder to
say than the one he already had.
But Wolstencroft didn't like any of the names
she suggested. At least not for himself.
"They're all fine names," he said, popping a
piece of chocolate into his mouth then dabbing his
mouth with a napkin. "But, they're just not me."
Rita stayed lost in thought for a very long time,
tapping her cheek with her finger. And it wasn't
until the big clock behind the pharmacy counter
struck ten that she finally spoke.
"I think I have the answer," she said. "You could
have a name that's easy to say and keep your
name at the same time."
Wolstencroft looked puzzled.
make sense," he replied.



"Oh, but it does," Rita insisted. "You only have

to shorten the name you have."

Wolstencroft began to look interested. "You

mean I would still be Wolstencroft, but I'd have a
shorter, easier to pronounce name for those who
preferred it."
"That's right," she cried excitedly. "And you
have such a long name that there are several
choices." And she began ticking them off on her
"Woolly, Wolsten, Sten or Croft. Which one do
you like best?"
Wolstencroft thought very carefully, mulling
over each name in his mind.
"I like Croft," he decided at last. It's very
Rita looked disappointed. "I like Woolly best,"
she said. "It's so cuddly and friendly. And you are
woolly, you have a lovely thick coat."
Wolstencroft looked uncertain.
"You would still be Wolstencroft," Rita reminded
him. "And that's a very dignified name indeed.
Woolly would be a nice contrast."

They talked it over for well into the night as this

was a very important decision. There are very few
things as important as one's name.
But finally, just before the dawn rose in the eastern
sky, Rita had convinced him that Woolly was the
best choice.
"You're right," Wolstencroft said as he closed his
eyes and prepared to sleep. "It's nice to be
dignified, but not to be stuffy."
And so it was that Wolstencroft became known
as Woolly for short.
"I bet someone will come along and buy you
tomorrow," Rita predicted as she fetched a black
felt pen from the stationery department and
underneathWolstencroft, wrote Woolly for short.
But Rita was wrong. It was she, and not
Wolstencroft, who went to a new home the next
Nobody bought Wolstencroft that day. Or the
next day. Or the day after that.
In fact, all through that entire year, which felt
very long indeed to Wolstencroft, nobody took him

home to love and to hug him. And by this time he

longed to be hugged so badly that sometimes he
thought he just couldn't stand it any longer.
Because, of course, no hug is too big for a teddy
Soon it was almost Christmas time again. And
the tinsel and the holly were decorating the drug
store. And the shoppers were all very merry and
wearing gaily colored scarves and mittens. But still
no one bought Wolstencroft, who was feeling extra
sad and lonely sitting there all by himself high
above the Christmas cards and wrapping paper.

It's my name he decided sadly, as a tear rolled

down his furry cheek. I hate it. And so does
everyone else. I wish I were called anything but
Wolstencroft. Even though it's now Woolly for short.
Then one frosty evening when the stars were
sparkling in the night sky and snowflakes were
dancing past the windows, a little boy and his
daddy came into the store.

"Hey look at this," said the daddy when he

noticed Wolstencroft's name tag. "This teddy bear
has the same name as you! Only you're called Sten
for short and he's called Woolly."
"What?" The boy called out in surprise. "I didn't
think anyone else in the whole great big world was
called Wolstencroft."
And just like Wolstencroft the bear, he was
beginning to hate his name.
"Why don't you two get to know each other?"
the daddy suggested as he lifted Wolstencroft
down from the shelf.
And the little boy wrapped his arms around his
namesake, which means someone who has the
same name as yourself, and stroked his soft fur.
And they both loved each other from that moment
"I love him daddy, can I
Christmas?" he asked hopefully.
daddy said yes, danced around
Wolstencroft, almost colliding with
as he did so.

have him for

And when his
the store with
other shoppers

Wolstencroft really wasn't such a bad name

after all they both decided as they whirled around
the Christmas tree at the front of the store. In fact,
it was starting to sound better all the time now that
they had found each other in this wonderful way.
Wolstencroft the bear had never remembered
feeling this happy before. Indeed, he felt so chockfull of joy that he thought he just might burst. He
was going to a new home at last. And he knew that
this little boy, who was called Sten, would be his
very best friend forever.

Then Sten gave him a hug so big that his

tummy was squished. But, of course, Wolstencroft
didn't care. Because no hug is too big for a teddy

by Carol Moore

Ollie is an eel.
He likes his home in a jar.

When he comes out he swims over

his jar.

He swims under his jar.

He swims through his jar.

When he is done, he swims back into his jar.

Now there are two eels, Ollie and Izzy.

When Ollie and Izzy come out they can swim
over, under, through, around, and back into their
jar together.

He swims around his jar.


Rolando Merino for his son Rollie

The word AIRPLANE starts with the

letter "A". An AIRPLANE flies in the sky.

This is a BEAR. The

word BEAR starts with
the letter "B".

This is the CAT. CAT

starts with the letter

This is a DOG. A DOG can bark

and wag its tail. The word DOG
starts with a letter "D".


starts with the letter
"E". This is an elephant
blowing its trunk.
FISH live in the water
and swim around. The
word FISH starts with
the letter "F".

This is a GORILLA.
They live in the
mountain jungles. The
word GORILLA starts
with a "G".
flies in the air. The
starts with an "H".
This is an IGLOO, it is
a home built out of
snow. The word
IGLOO starts with the
letter "I".

This toy is called a

The clown's head pops
out. The word JACKIN-THE-BOX starts
with the letter "J".
This is a boy flying a
KITE. The word KITE
starts with the letter
This is a LIZARD.
Lizards lie on rocks to
get warmed up by the
sun. The word
LIZARD starts with the
letter "L".

This is a MOP. We use

them to clean. The
word MOP starts with
the letter "M".
This is a NEST. Young
birds hatch from their
eggs in a NEST. The
word NEST starts with
the letter "N".
This is the OCEAN.
You can see the
OCEAN at a beach.
The word ocean starts
with the letter "O".

This is a PARROT. It is
a beautiful bird that can
repeat words people
say. The word
PARROT starts with
the letter "P".

This is a QUILT. You

can put one on your
bed to keep you warm
at night. The word
QUILT starts with a
letter "Q".
A RAINBOW occurs
after a rainstorm, when
the sun shines. Some
people believe there is
a pot of gold at the end

RAINBOW starts with
the letter "R".
This is a SAILBOAT. It
can sail on the water
using the wind.
SAILBOAT starts with
the letter "S".

This is a TREE. Apples

grow on this tree. The
word TREE starts with
the letter "T".

used during the rain.
starts with the letter
This is a VACUUM
CLEANER. We use it
to clean the floors and
carpets. The word
VACUUM starts with
the letter "V".
This is a
wonderful sight. The
starts with the letter

This is a
it to play music. The
starts with the letter
This is a ball of YARN.
We can knit a sweater
with yarn. The word
YARN starts with the
letter "Y".
This is a ZEBRA. This
animal has stripes all
over its body. The word
ZEBRA begins with the
letter "Z".


A story by Rolando Merino for his son Rollie

This is an elephant. They are very big animals

and have a long memory, and a very long nose
called a trunk. They make a trumpet sound
This is the lion. It
is the king of the
jungle and

goes ROAR!

This is a monkey. They spend a lot of time up in

trees and like to eat fruits. This one has a
banana. They go

This is the kangaroo from

Australia. It bounces and
bounces anywhere it wants to

giraffe. It has a very long neck
to reach the tender leaves up
high on a tree. They are very
tall and very quiet animals.

This is the
tiger. It is a
big cat that
hunts in the
jungle. Be
careful not
to run into
one of these big cats in the
jungle!. It
This is an alligator. They
have a lot of teeth and spend most of the time in
the water. Don't go near these big creatures.
They rumbleRRRRRR.....RRRRRRR!

This is the flamingo. It

is a big beautiful bird.
They are very noisy

This is
the rhino. He is a big
animal and has a horn on his head. They go
snort, snort

The Halloween House

Written and Illustrated by Carol Moore
Inspired by and dedicated to John D. Barrett, Jr., Esq.

The Halloween House is big and old. I'm told that

on Halloween night things happen there.

Now Suzie's moved in--she's only 4--along with

her brother, her father and mother, and little
Picador. He's their dog. Well, maybe half a dog. He's
a Chihuahua, as small as they come.
Suzie's room is in the attic. It's no fun. With a high
ceiling, cold and gloomy, and shadows that run
halfway up the walls. Suzie hides under the blanket.
Picador too. Come on, he's no guard dog.
Suzie's mom bought her a bear. A teddy bear
named Teddy. He's big and fluffy and Suzie adores

him. "I love you so much" she says. Then she wraps
her arms around him, snuggling like a cat ready to
purr while Picador buries himself in all that fur.
The Halloween House's attic may be scary, but
Teddy's not. Around his neck he wears a blue scarf
with red polka dots. On his back paws are black
tennis shoes tied with lace and plenty of knots.
Something is silly about that teddy bear. He's got a
goofy smile from ear to ear. It's kind of lopsided and
sweet, although not quite complete. He was cheap
when Suzie's mom bought him at the Dollar Store.
But his smile is always there.
When scratching and squeaking come from the
Teddy smiles.
When clothes on the floor become strange figures
in piles,
Teddy smiles.
When an invisible spider's miles of cobweb fades
away in the morning,
Teddy smiles.

Tonight is Suzie's first Halloween at the Halloween House.

She has finished her trick or treating, she did it earlier in
the evening. She dressed up as a pumpkin with an orange
glow--and now her two bags of candy overflow onto the

It's midnight and everyone's asleep. Not a peep,

until suddenly there's a tapping at the door.
"Tap, tap....tap." It starts out soft and low and then
changes into a steady beat, beat, beat as though a
giant's heart is nudging the door.
Teddy smiles.

A thin mist streams from a crack in the corner,

turns into a snake sliding across the floor.
Teddy smiles.
Next, at the window appears a witch 200 years old
with a black hat hiding half her face and the wrinkles
it holds. She slips right through the glass as though it
isn't there at all. Once inside, she stands up, six feet
Teddy smiles.
A long legged spider with big fangs drops from the
ceiling and hangs only five feet over the bed where
Suzie and Picador peacefully sleep.
The snake, the witch and the spider slither, creep
and dangle closer, growing bigger as they go. They're
up to no good. This can't be happening.
But Teddy is watching. He smiles no more. The
upturned side of his lip droops down, while the other
part of his lip lifts up. Teddy's smile turns into a
When the three monsters almost reach the bed,
Teddy gets up. But more than that, he begins to
grow, although much faster and bigger than they.
His tennis shoes pop off and his scarf floats away.
Sweet, smiling Teddy turns into a Grizzly bear, the
biggest, meanest Grizzly of your imagination.

Standing on his back paws, stretched to the ceiling

Teddy is terrifying. Fortunately, Suzie and Picador
are still sleep.
The snake, the witch, and the spider stop growing.
They stare at him. There's wonder and shock in their
eyes. This is an unexpected surprise.
Then Teddy roars! It's so loud, it doesn't help to
cover your ears. And the ghouls hear it. This Grizzly
is beyond their worst fears. With a puff and a poof
they disappear.
Suzie is instantly awake, her eyes big and round. With a
frightened yip Picador bolts from under the covers
trembling with dread. But they see nothing, nothing at all,
because the monsters have fled.
And Teddy is suddenly Teddy again. How could that be?
It happened so fast, there was nothing to see, except his
shoes are across the room and his scarf is at the bottom of
the bed.

Gone is the snake. Gone is the witch. Gone is the

spider and the beating heart at the door. It's quite
obvious they'll never return. Nevermore. At least not
to this Halloween House so long as this bear stays
around and he will stay. Because he is loved.
Have no fear, Teddy's here.
...and he smiles.

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