Happy Birthday Old Bear 30th Birthday blog tour

Red Reading Hub is delighted to be part of the blog tour celebrating Old Bear’s 30th birthday


Happy Birthday Old Bear
Jane Hissey
I find it hard to believe that we’re celebrating Old Bear’s 30th birthday. He’s been one of my all time favourite characters since my early days as an infant teacher; and I have – I think – still got all his books, treasures every one.
I particularly treasure my original copy of Old Bear, still with its press release and review slip …


I cannot possibly imagine how many classes, individuals and groups of young children I’ve shared this and the other stories with. So, I’m way beyond thrilled to be part of the celebrations marking the 30th anniversary of that first publication and Jane’s new Old Bear story which opens with all the toys, helped by a new friend, Elsie elephant busily preparing for Old Bear’s party.
Poor Little Bear, he just can’t keep up with Elsie who, rather than tie a bow around her umbrella gift seems to be tying bows to anything and everything …


No party would be complete without balloons and the toys have those in abundance, even an anteater, so Little Bear thinks; but we know better …


Meanwhile in the kitchen, Bramwell Brown has been hard at work baking and now the fruit of his labours is ready for decorating – or rather it was, but Elsie precipitates a slight mishap which results in a fair bit of cake being squashed. Undaunted, Elsie soon has the whole near-disaster turned into a creative ‘half-a-cake’ opportunity when in marches Sailor whose concern is for the celebratory music …


and of course, Little Bear is eager to be part of the band.
Out in the garden is some bubble mixture: Elsie and Little Bear start to get a bit carried away with blowing ‘big, wibbly-wobbly bubbles’ and it’s as well that the ever-resourceful Elsie fetches the perfect cake protector just in time for the VIP’s appearance.


We all know what happens when gusts of wind take hold of open brollies and all of a sudden Elsie is whisked skywards clinging on for dear life. Thank goodness then for another one of the friends, Hoot. She hears all the noise and is straightway off to the rescue, returning soon after with Elsie and the umbrella safe and sound.
Then finally, it really IS time to celebrate: ‘HAPPY BIRTHDAY OLD BEAR’: here’s a cake we made just for you. …


and may we all be here with you for many more birthdays.
I wanted an Elsie to come to our Old Bear celebration and here she is:


Elsie whom I made in India from scrap materials bringing her own special umbrella gift for Old Bear

This latest Jane Hissey book is STU-PEN-DOUS: sheer delight from cover to cover. Every spread is a sensory treat: it’s so tactile; you can almost feel the fur and felt of the toys and that storybook cake really sends your olfactory organs and taste buds into over-drive. Old Bear and his creator truly are as magical as ever.
Inspired by Elsie, some of your fans have made celebratory Happy Birthday umbrellas specially for the occasion too:


I have two copies of Happy Birthday Old Bear to give away thanks to Scribblers. To be in with a chance to win, simply retweet my celebratory tweet #OldBear30 by 22nd September. (UK only) And just in case you’ve missed the previous celebrations or want to know what’s still to come …

blog-tour-banner 30th-logo


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  • Birthday Prank Ideas  On November 12, 2016 at 4:20 pm

    Nice Blog!! Celebrating Old Bear’s 30th birthday is hard to believe but it is really amazing. Happy Birthday umbrellas and cakes are really very good. I am happy after reading your blog and waiting to read next post.


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