Give-Away #3

To conclude my week of blogiversary celebrations, I have a really special give-away. I may have mentioned once or twice about how my brother is an amazing artist and storyteller, but he’s also a really incredible big brother. We didn’t always have the best relationship while I was growing up (big brothers like to tease), but he’s more than made up for all the times he would get mad at me when I had to practice the piano or that time he annihilated me at Risk and I took it personally. Over the last 15 or so years, he has been nothing but supportive and offered me lots and lots of brotherly love and advice and many free meals. And now he’s offering one of you lucky ducks an original work of art!

He volunteered to do a watercolor, but he asked me to come up with the subject. I wanted him to do a fairytale, and somehow decided on The Princess and the Pea. I had done an embroidery of the fairytale for Izzy a few years ago, and I liked the idea of all those mattresses stacked up. Matt, of course, put his own twist on it.

I love how he brought the pea to life and gave him expression. I love that the princess and the pea now have a relationship. I also love the angle of the watercolor and how it looks down on the mountain of mattresses. I hope that you love it as much as I do.

So what do you have to do to win?

I think you know the drill by now. Just leave a comment on this post telling me your favorite fairytale by Sunday, April 29th at midnight. One lucky winner will be drawn at random. I’ll announce the winners on Monday, April 30th.

p.s. There’s still time to enter Give-Away #1 and Give-Away #2 if you haven’t yet done so.



  1. Amanda · April 26, 2012

    I’ve already told Matt how much I like this painting. But let me just say it again, “I really like this painting”. So (one of) my favorite fairytales The Princess and the Frog, is a great story. And I’m not talking about the Disney version (thought that was okay, it was set in New Orleans). I love the lesson(s) learned: keeping your word, not judging, kindness etc …

  2. Sally Wilde · April 26, 2012

    Love this painting . . . So do my girls.
    So look at me, I’m actually commenting. I don’t know if I could decide on just one favorite fairytale. I read E. D. Baker’s The Wide Awake Princess to my little girls a couple of months ago. We all loved it and I would recommend it to anyone who is a lover of fairytale a (it sort of mentions them all and is a very quick read). However, if I had to choose, it would have to be Sleeping Beauty, because despite how hard we try to plan our lives so everything goes just right . . . Bad things still happen, no matter what, even to princesses.

  3. anne · April 26, 2012

    That really is an awesome painting. Would it be butt-kissy to say that the Princess and the Pea was my favorite fairy tale when I was growing up? Probably, but it was. Outsmarting the diabolical future mother-in-law was very appealing to me, even before I grew up and faced the same sorts of challenges myself. I fail at it, incidentally, but my husband is still on my side, so it doesn’t matter what she thinks. 🙂
    In case picking The Princess and the Pea IS too butt-kissy, I’m going to pick another one, too, called “A Bit of Luck” that I just read to the girls for bed time the other day. It’s about a man who finds a blue crystal with a genii inside who grants his wishes and makes him wealthy and helps him woe a princess. But when it comes time for them to get married, the Prime Minister tricks the man into giving him the “bit of luck” crystal, and he banishes the king and the man and tries to get the princess to marry him. But he’s evil and cruel, and she tricks him into giving up the bit of luck and has the genii set everything to rights again and then keeps control of the crystal, because the men in her life clearly don’t know what to do with a bit of luck when they find one. So pro-female, and the story is at least 130 years old, because I found it in a reprint of a book first published in the 1880s. Yeah, girl power!

  4. lora mcdonald · April 26, 2012

    This painting is awesome! I would love to put it in my daughter’s room. My favorite fairytale is, and always will be, Cinderella. I love Cinderella because of her kindness and patience.

  5. Kylie · April 26, 2012

    That painting is amazing (as usual Matthew!). I especially love that adorable pea! I like The Princess and the Pea a lot too (maybe its
    because I’m a pretty picky sleeper). I always liked Sleeping Beauty and Alice in Wonderland too.

  6. Kelly · April 26, 2012

    I like that the princess doesn’t seem that great in the photo. I guess we all need a good night sleep.
    My favorite fairy tale is probably Pinocchio. I can’t say why.

  7. Heidi Moore · April 26, 2012

    Hmmmm. My favorite would have to be The Little Red Hen. I would love to hang that in my daughter’s room!

  8. sarabaldwin · April 26, 2012

    Wow. I envy your brother’s talent. The watercolor is amazing. Also, the background you shared about your relationship with him is really sweet.

    One of my favorite childhood memories is my dad reading us fairytales from the brothers Grimm book. I always liked Rapunzel, Little Red-Cap (Little Red Riding Hood), and Rumpelstiltskin.

    • krisgal · April 27, 2012

      I love it! What talent!

      I’ve always loved the Princess & Pea fairytale too, but also the one about the shoemaker and the elves.

  9. cristen · April 28, 2012

    I’ll be honest. When you first said you were giving away a watercolor by your brother, I thought the winner would get to choose what’s in it. Obviously, I would have chosen something with Colbert, a unicorn, and my cat.

    Anyway, I remember having a big book of fairy tales that I liked reading. However, I wasn’t too much into a lot of the cartoons/movies. So, it’s hard to say which is my favorite, but I think I’m going to say Hansel and Gretel. I know it’s super dark, but it sticks with you. Plus, the whole idea of a house made out of candy just blew my mind!

  10. amanda a · April 28, 2012

    this is really tough. i have thought for days now about my favorite fairy tale. i’m not really a dreamy kind of gal, so i’ve never really been “into” princesses and castles and such, but i do love little mermaid-her curiosity, devotion, stubbornness and the ocean is what draws me to this tale. non-dreamy fairy tale fav would be the fisherman and his wife. i’ve always been very interested in this tale of greed. kind of dark for a fairy tale, but a great lesson (on so many levels!) nonetheless. thanks!

  11. shehnoog · April 29, 2012

    I know this isn’t a fairytale in a traditional sense, but I think Ella Enchanted (the book is a play on Cinderella) is my favorite psuedo-fairytale. It’s a play on Cinderella but with a heroine that is truly tough and inspiring. I have always loved Cinderella but have been pained by her lack of spunk. With Ella, I get a spunky character and can finally understand why Cinderella could never really stand up for herself.

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