During the night, the Ice Bird had flown over the forest and now the trees and rocks sparkled with frost.
In his nest, Squirrel woke up from his winter sleep and his mother greeted him.
“Good morning little one, do you know what day it is?” It was the day before the Winter Party! Lots of things to do and prepare!
Squirrel climbed out of the nest in the old oak tree. He jumped from branch to branch and made his way to the middle of the forest valley to find his friends.
Robin was busy talking with one of the small bunnies. Squirrel greeted them with a warm hello and hugs.
Whilst other creatures were sleeping, the birds were preparing for the party. At the open space around the tall pine tree they made decorations from pine cones and berries. Rows of icicles hung from the branches and shards of ice were arranged to make sparkling ornaments.
The birds decorated the manes of the wild horses and Grazelle with garlands of winter blossoms.
That evening everyone gathered at the party. Squirrel was happy to be there, to tell stories, to sing and dance together. All around the frosty winter night was filled with laughter, sparkles and glitter.
Then a group of birds started singing, soon the others joined in and all started dancing in a large circle. Squirrel wanted to remember this party and had an idea! He could keep a small piece of sparkle, it would always remind him of this moment!
He saw a beautiful icicle, shaped like a small diamond, hanging from a low branch. He had found his sparkle! Holding this in one paw, he climbed up the tall pine tree where he found a hollow near the top. He carefully placed the icicle on a layer of moss inside. Happily, he climbed down and joined the party again.
Later that night, exhausted, they all crawled into their nests and went back to their winter sleep.
When Squirrel woke up next, he knew immediately that it was springtime. He could hear it from the sounds of the forest and the scent of spring flowers. Remembering that he had hidden a sparkle in the tall pine tree at the Winter Party, he could not wait to get back.
Squirrel climbed up the tree and recognised the hollow near the top. When he looked inside, all he saw was a damp patch on the moss where his sparkle should have been.
He missed the memory of the Winter Party and wished there was something which reminded him of the beauty and the good times. Feeling sad, he decided to look for Robin. Back in the valley he saw his friend bathing in the stream.
Water splashed around, drops flew everywhere and also stayed on her feathers. Just at that moment the sun came out and made the water drops glitter! Squirrel laughed out loud and said: ‘it’s the sparkle I was looking for!’
When he explained this, Robin laughed and showed him the dew drops in the spider’s web, the silvery trails of the snails, the small rain drops on the grass and sparkling crystals in the mountain rocks. If you look carefully, you can find memories of the Winter Party all around you!
Tord Boontje, 2019