Fairy Tale Friday- The Runaway Pancake

I am very familiar with this fairy tale so it brought back very fond memories.

One morning, a woman mixed up some pancake batter to make a big pancake for her seven children. They fought over who should have the first bite. The eldest child said they should have the first bite, the youngest said they should have the first because they needed to grow. As the pancake heard the arguments, it wriggled and flapped and jumped out of the pan. the children were too busy arguing to notice it.

The mother screamed at them to catch the pancake, but the pancake was too fast to catch. It past a hare who demanded that it should stop for it to eat. The pancake laughed and said it had ran away from seven squabbling children so it could run away from it. It rolled past a goat who wanted to eat it and once again, the pancake managed to escape seven squabbling children, a hare and the goat. The pancake then approached a fox who it also managed to outrun.

Finally, the pancake came to a river. There was a pig at the river who offered to carry it across the river. The pancake rolled onto the pig, the pig took the pancake halfway across the river and then turned, tossed the pancake and ate it whole! 🙂

This gave me gingerbread man vibes but it’s a story that I’m still so fond of! 🙂

An extract from A Year Full of Stories, by Angela McAllister, illustrated by Christopher Corr (Frances Lincoln Children’s Books, 2016)


Fairy Tale Friday- The Mole’s Wedding

I had never heard this Korean tale before, so I looked forward to reading it for this week’s post.

It starts with a mention of a great stone statue that stood tall near the river Kingin. Nearby this river, lived a mole and his wife who had a daughter that they loved. A handsome young mole came to ask if he could marry their daughter, but the father told him that his daughter deserved to marry the greatest being in the world. His daughter was sad and asked who the greatest being in the world is. Her father replied that nothing was greater than the sun. The mole asked the sun to marry his daughter, but the sun replied that the Cloud could hide its face, so the Cloud was far greater.

The mole asked the Cloud to marry his daughter, and the Cloud said that Wind had more power. Mole asked Crane to fly him to the mountain peak to speak to the Wind. The Wind said that in fact, the great stone statue had more power because it was unable to be moved. Once again, the mole went to beg for marriage for his daughter. The statue told the mole that there was a creature that burrowed through the ground beneath him and that would knock him over one day.  Mole was surprised to come across the young mole beneath the statue and begged him for forgiveness. The handsome mole was happy to marry the daughter, but only if she agreed! She did and they had a wonderful wedding. The wind blew the clouds away from the sun so that it could shine down on the river and create a wonderful day for them!

Aw, so cute!

An extract from A Year Full of Stories, by Angela McAllister, illustrated by Christopher Corr (Frances Lincoln Children’s Books, 2016)   

Next Fairy Tale- The Runaway Pancake


Fairy Tale Friday- The Frog Prince

This story is such a well known classic, but it’s been a while since I read it. I was super happy to read it for this week’s fairy tale feature.

It centres around a lonely princess who was playing with her golden ball in the palace garden. A stag got in her way, causing her to miss the catch and lose her ball into a pond. The princess couldn’t even see a glimpse of it and started to cry. A frog jumped out of the water. She was repulsed as she didn’t like slimy creatures. Surprisingly, the frog opened its mouth to speak to her. It asked her why she was sad. The princess told her about the ball. The frog told her that if she promised to love him and let him sit at her table, eat from her plate, sip from her cup and sleep on her pillow then he’d get the all for her. The princess promised as the golden ball was such a special present from her father. Before long, the frog had retrieved the ball for her.

At supper the next day, the princess heard a croak at her feet. She was reminded of the promise she had made to the frog. Her father was puzzled and the princess had to tell her about her promise. He insisted that she had to keep the promise that she had made. The princess told her father that she couldn’t bear to pick the frog up. Her father was disappointed with her, so she did as she was asked. Each thing that she had promised, the princess had to do, even if it repulsed her.

The frog was sad the next morning and the princess couldn’t understand why. She had done everything that he had asked. She asked him why he was so sad and he questioned if she loved him. The princess realised much the frog had done for her, how he’d dived into the pond, how he’d searched for her and she’d treated him nastily. She scooped him up and saw his gentle eyes and kind heart. As she kissed his tiny green head, he transformed into a prince. The prince told her how he’d been under a spell and her love had set him free. The princess was so astonished. The prince thanked her for keeping her promise to him! (Even if it took her a while to see past his appearance!) ❤

An extract from A Year Full of Stories, by Angela McAllister, illustrated by Christopher Corr (Frances Lincoln Children’s Books, 2016)   

Next Fairy Tale- The Mole’s Wedding

Fairy/Folk Tale Friday- The Empty Barn

I hadn’t heard this story before, so it was a pleasure to read it. It’s about a farmer who has three sons named Valdis, Vilis and Teodors. Teodors was the odd one out because he couldn’t match the strength of his siblings.

One day, the farmer told his sons that the barn was falling down and it needed to pull it down and build a new one. Valdis and Vilis set to work at once. Teodors attempted to start work, but his brothers just laughed at him, telling him he was not strong enough to do the work. Teodors was left to pick up any bits and pieces that might be useful. When finished, the two strong brothers went into the forest to chop trees down for the new barn. Teodors begged them to let him try. They told him to chop down a fine pine. Teodors tried but couldn’t even lift the axe.

Teodors kept on trying to help but the brothers kept denying Teodors efforts. The farmer was watching his three sons, checking on their every move. Teodors made himself useful in ways that weren’t heavy duty. He always had things ready for them, like nails and a hammer.

When the new barn was complete, the farmer was proud of his sons. He told them that whoever could fill the empty barn in a day could have his rocking chair. Valdis and Vilis were ready for a rest. The next morning, Valdis looked for something to fill the barn. He spotted the cows in the meadow and thought they’d nicely fill up the barn. The cows were enjoying the grass and didn’t want to be put into a barn. After some struggling, Valdis had filled the barn with unwilling cows. Valdis was told by his father that he hadn’t filled it up to the roof.

Vilis tried next, spotting plenty of wheat to fill the barn. He loaded up his wagon and took it to the barn. His efforts took all day. Vilis was told that he had filled the barn to the roof but not from wall to wall.

The farmer told his son, Teodors that it was his turn tomorrow. Teodors said he was ready and that it wouldn’t take him long to fill the barn. Teodors took candles out of his pocket and places them around the barn, lighting them carefully. All of the candle light filled the barn with golden light. The farmer praised Teodors telling him that he’d filled the barn. He was given the rocking chair, but Teodors told his father to keep it. He said he was going to spend time getting strong like his brothers. The farmer said that it would take him a long time to be strong and tall like his brothers, but he would always be the most clever!

An extract from A Year Full of Stories, by Angela McAllister, illustrated by Christopher Corr (Frances Lincoln Children’s Books, 2016)   

Next Fairy Tale- The Frog Prince

Fairy Tale/Folk Tale Friday- King Of The Forest

This is a short story intended for Chinese New Year. Tiger was prowling through the shadows when he came across Fox, sitting outside his den. Tiger smiled to himself and pounced on Fox’s tail, pinning him fast. Fox told him to get off of him because he was the King Of The Forest. Tiger was shocked and told Fox that he wasn’t the King Of The Forest. Fox insisted that he was because all of the animals were afraid of him. He said that Tiger should follow and see for himself. Tiger was incredibly curious but did so. (Anyone else getting The Gruffalo vibes?)

As they approached a herd of deer by the river, they were terrified and fled. They came to some pigs and when Fox appeared they squealed and thundered away. They came to some monkeys, who shrieked with fright and scrambled into the treetops.

Tiger was amazed and apologised to Fox for underestimating him. He agreed that Fox was the King Of The Forest and left the crafty Fox alone.

I can’t work out which one came first, but this definitely does remind me of the Julia Donaldson’s The Gruffalo! 

An extract from A Year Full of Stories, by Angela McAllister, illustrated by Christopher Corr (Frances Lincoln Children’s Books, 2016)   

Next Fairy Tale/Folk Tale Friday- Rashie Coat

Fairy Tale/Folk Tale Friday- The Magic Porridge Pot

I adore this sweet little story which always makes me feel warm inside! 🙂 I’ve shared it with my class before and they adore it too. I’m pretty sure you’ll have heard of this story before. It’s mega popular.

It centres around Hans who comes from a poor family. He is walking to school one day when he meets an old woman. She asks for some food and he shares his only crust of bread with her. On the way home, he meets her again. She hands him a cooking pot and tells him that it’s a thank you for his kindness. She tells him to tap it and say ‘Cook, little pot, cook.’ She said it will give them as much porridge as they wish. If they want it to stop they have to say ‘Stop, little pot, stop!’ Hans thanked her and took the pot home.

Hans showed his mother and his brother Fritz. From that day on, they never had to go hungry again. Sometimes they stirred in jam or berries. Sometimes they invited their neighbours in.

One morning when Hans was at school, Fritz decided he wanted more porridge. His mother was outside so he took advantage of that. The porridge kept on cooking. He didn’t notice until he had licked his bowl clean. ‘Stop cooking pot!’ he said, but the pot didn’t stop. It spilled onto the stove and onto the kitchen floor. Fritz started to cry and his mother came in to see what had happened. She said ‘Stop, porridge pot, stop!’ The pot kept cooking. It flooded the kitchen and flowed out through the back door. It kept on spreading. The villagers were alarmed as the porridge oozed into their homes. The children could make porridge snowmen but soon the porridge was too thick to play in. It flowed all the way to the school.

Hans could smell the porridge. He ran out of school and realised what had hapened. He couldn’t get home to set things right. However, a gust of wind gave him an idea. He got a kite that they’d been making at school. He threw it into the village which the wind then took into the sky. He grabbed its tail and held on until he was at his own porridge garden. He tapped the porridge pot and said ‘Stop, little pot, stop!’ It stopped cooking at one.

It took many days to eat their way through the porridge and nobody in that village, except Hans and his family, ever ate porridge again!

An extract from A Year Full of Stories, by Angela McAllister, illustrated by Christopher Corr (Frances Lincoln Children’s Books, 2016)   

Next Fairy Tale/Folk Tale Friday- King Of The Forest


Fairy Tale/Folk Tale Friday- Father Frost

This Russian fairy tale is all about a man whose wife died leaving him to care for their young daughter, Irina. The man was worried that Irina was lonely, so he married a woman who had a daughter of her own. He felt like this gave Irina a family.

However, Irina’s father had made a mistake. Her stepmother was terrible and hated Irina. She was treated very like Cinderella whereas Nonna, the stepmother’s daughter got to lye in bed all day. If Irina or her father complained, the stepmother would throw pots and pans at them.

One morning, the stepmother decided that it was time for Irina to get married. She instructed her husband to take Irina into the forest and leave her by the tall pine tree. He didn’t want to because he believed that she would freeze in the cold. Irina’s stepmother insisted that she wouldn’t be waiting for long. The only food she was allowed to take were some peelings from the pigsty. Irina and her father were too scared to argue. As they rode away into the forest, the stepmother cackled at her trick…

Irina and her father went into the forest and located the pine tree. He really didn’t want to leave his daughter. She insisted that she’d be fine and didn’t want her father to get in any trouble.

As Irina was shivering in the cold and nibbling on the peelings, she heard footsteps in the snow. A glittering figure with a white beard came towards her. It was Father Frost. He asked her if she was warm and although she was shivering, Irina said that she was. He stepped closer making ice form at her feet. He asked her again if she was still warm. Irina said that she was, even though her toes were numb. Father Frost stepped closer making snowflakes fall. As he asked again, Irina struggled to breath because each breath stabbed like needles in her chest. Irina still insisted that she was warm enough. Father Frost took pity on Irina. He wrapped her up in a scarlet cloak and warm blankets.

That night, Irina’s father couldn’t sleep and rode into the forest, fearing that his daughter was dead. To his delight, she was alive, warmly dressed with a chest full of presents at her feet. The stepmother was furious when they returned. She said Nonna must go to the forest because she deserved richer clothers and presents than Irina.

When Father Frost visited Nonna at the tree, she was completely different to Irina. She moaned about the cold and was very greedy. Father Frost recognised that greed. He raised his staff.

The stepmother went into the forest, searching for Nonna. She found her as pale as ice with nothing but a box of pine needles at her feet. She hugged Nonna, but Nonna was so cold that they both froze on the spot!

An extract from A Year Full of Stories, by Angela McAllister, illustrated by Christopher Corr (Frances Lincoln Children’s Books, 2016)   

Next Fairy Tale/Folk Tale- The Magic Porridge Pot