Twylah Jean can be found in the summer near her home in the old apple tree. She dwells in a space between the 2nd and 3rd roots on the East side of the tree. In order to make her home secure she needed only to add a front wall and roof.
The Pips look at house building as a joyful and creative community endeavor. They put up Twylah's in only three days, using hand sawn lumber from lilac branches that had broken under the weight of an early, wet snow. Her little roof they covered with mossy bark, giving her safe cover from the occasional humans who wander there to pick apples. Only those few who would have the time and inclination to rest under an apple tree on a sunny summer day would ever notice her weathered brown door, and suspect that someone out of the ordinary lived there.
Twylah has a great love of growing things. A peak through the two curtained windows on each side of the door gives a glimpse of her kitchen table piled high with seedpods, acorns and tiny mushrooms. These she will dry and store away in boxes or hang from the ceiling to later take to Katherine Ophelia's for their long winter of togetherness.
She not only tends plants where they grow in the wild, but digs some of her favorites to put in tiny pots which she places around her house. The others tease her, saying she's wasting her time as she could just enjoy these plants where they grow. But Twylah Jean likes to have her favorites close by her as she sorts berries or crushes herbs for flavorful teas. She says that plants can be better company than some Pips that she knows!
She is fond of clothes with pockets so that on her walks she can gather special aromatic leaves and petals, or tiny feathers ‑ perfect for sweeping the corners of her house (though, to be truthful, she seldom does it). Being a very practical Pip, she usually wears a coverall apron to protect her little hand‑sewn dresses.
If you, too, enjoy spending your days in the company of green and growing things, then you have found a kindred spirit in Twylah Jean.
1993, 2006 by Maureen Carlson