Friday, June 09, 2006

collection collective: moomins!


i grew up
without television.
my dad read
the plug-in drug
and this book's
warning about television
coupled with his distain
for consumerism
meant (to me)
that
we didn't get
to watch scooby -doo
and the smurfs.
instead
my dad read to us.
the jungle book
kim,
wizard of earthsea,
and many others...
my mother would
sit with us
and listen
to my dad read.
he was an excellent
storyteller.
he has
a real gift for voices
and a slow
deep voice-
perfect
for reading.

my mother
rarely read to us
(at least that
i can remember).
except
the moomin series.
i remember
curling up by her
and listening
to her soft,
gentle voice,
with that lovely
sing-song
of a foreigner
speaking
english,
reading us
moominland midwinter.

she lived in sweden
in her early 20s
where she
was introduced
to the moomin books
by Tove Jansson,
a Finnish novelist,
painter, illustrator
and
comic strip author.

moomins are not
very familar
to most americans
but you can find them
all over western europe
and,
of course,
in japan.
the japanese
(who seem
to have
a fondness
for all things
cute)
are crazy about
moomins.

my
collection collective
for wednesday
(a day late again)
is my moomin
collection.

the little my
yellow mug
i bought
in luebeck, germany
when i was there
for a foreign exchange
program.
i freaked out
when i saw them
because i never
saw the characters
outside of books.
i bought a mug
for each
of my siblings
and carted them
around europe
for months
because
i knew
my siblings
would love them
as much as i did.
that was over
10 years ago!
little my
was my favorite character.

little my (left)
with her mom


little my is
described as
a small, determined
and
fiercely independent.
she is
very aggressive
and
totally disrespectful,
but can be a good friend.

you can see why
i loved her, no?

i was also
very fond of
the hemulen
(see purple mug).
hemulen
are a species
that are described
as
avid collectors.
sound appropriate?!

my sister found
the purple
and gray mug
for me
at the marimekko store
in seattle.

the small
plastic characters
are from my brother
and my friend,
west coast pony.
they are a japanese
collector series.

they bought them
for me
at
schmancy
and
a store called okay-okay
(i think)
in seattle.
my brother
is so sweet...
he kept going
back to schmancy
to get me all
the characters.
i have most of
them,
but sadly
no moominmama!

it's not much
of a collection
but i thought
it would be fun
to share.

i'll leave you
with a crazy little
picture i took
today
while collecting in the forest.
here is a caterpillar
being predated upon
by an immature bug.
it's literally
got its mouthparts
(which are straw like)
in the caterpillar
and it's sucking it
like a milkshake.
they fell on my shirt
from a tree.
i interrupted his lunch.


friday-
my gift tags
for the
gift tag swap.

7 comments:

Shari said...

hi!
i always enjoy your writing. i have heard of moomins but have never read the books. you have me intrigued. love your little collection. take care, shari
ps: my mom read tom sawyer and huck finn to me along with the little house books. :)

A COLLAGE A DAY said...

Cool!!
Never heard of the Moonins but they sound really cool. I grew up watching The Electric Company and Mister Rogers, but Walt Disney was my hero as a child. Then came Robert Crumb and my world was completely turned around... Wow!!

r.

P said...

oh yes, moomins are completely wonderful :)

A few years back we went to Tampere in Finland, Tove Jansson's hometown (actually it was sadly just a few weeks before she died). They have a small but wonderful Moomin museum which, along with their love of cakes, made it a great trip.

I'm definitely a mama moomin fan myself, I use my mama moomin mug every day...

Michal said...

hooray to literary parents!
i grew up on the moomins myself and have been getting back to them these past few years. snif , the clumzy naiive one, was my favorite (and the kitten i just got was meant to be a male and called snufkin. we just happend to fall in love with a girl-kitten..). i wish i could just pick up a copy at borders, but i have to order them on amazon all the time. on the other hand, they are only $6.95 each on amazon...
oh, and i have all of series 1 of the kubriks, with a couple of extras (not moominmama, though...)

ms. pea said...

we never read moomins, sadly, but Kim is one of my favorite books ever! i read it again recently and loved it so much.

Lizette said...

We learned about them on the internet. My husband's grandma came from Sweden and we always try to keep things around the house (wooden horses) that remind us of that heritage. You have a great collection and wonderful memories of story times with your folks. How lucky!

sooz said...

So excellent Gwen. I have never heard of or seen Moomins and I now have a name for the existential yearning I have always had...there is a hole in my life and clearly its all about the absence of Moomins...