If you know which books I have published, it will not surprise you that February 2 is a special day for me. For many Americans, February 2 is Groundhog Day. An old folk tradition says that if Phil the groundhog comes out of hibernation and sees his shadow, he gets frightened and returns quickly to sleep, as he sees this as a sign of bad weather. If the woodchuck does not see its shadow, spring is close at hand!
But now, I have first-hand information by Margot the groundhog, and this is what she thinks about this story.
Does this mean that Groundhog Day is not reality, but a legend?
I think, today, everyone is convinced that this is just an old legend, probably invented by the first settlers who were eager for spring to begin. In the Old Continent, Europe, February 2 is celebrated as the moment when the days begin to lengthen. It is the day of hope for a new life and rebirth.
But in the United States and Canada, in February there is still snow everywhere where groundhogs live, and woodchucks (another word for groundhogs) will not wake from hibernation until March (even later in the far north). In any case, the legend of groundhog’s day makes a great story for long cold winter evenings.
Author-photographer Lieve Snellings
I am Lieve Snellings, a photographer from Belgium, who for more than 11 years, stays about 5 months a year in Quebec. The landscape there is so beautiful, and observing these wonderful, funny little creatures like groundhogs, squirrels, chipmunks, birds … in our backyard, made me became a passionate nature photographer.
This resulted in three children’s books in the series ‘Margot the Groundhog and Her North American Squirrel Family’. The books are written in Dutch (my mother tongue) and translated into English and French. Be aware, some of the photographs are sure to induce giggles.
The first one ‘Margot Gets An Unexpected Visit’ is a children’s tale where high-quality nature photography meets up with friendship, diversity, fun, education and ice hockey.
The second book ‘Groundhog Secrets – Everything You Always Wanted to Know about Woodchucks’ let you discover the secret world of groundhogs (also called woodchucks) through the eyes of Margot the groundhog while gaining a close-up view of wildlife in whimsical photo illustrations.
Margot reveals all of her secrets. She describes how groundhogs are born, what they look like and who is in their family. She talks about how they fill their tummies in summer and autumn, to store fat for the long winter months. Even medical doctors and scientists study the groundhog hibernation. Find out why in this fascinating illustrated book.
Amazon (e-book & paperback): http://smarturl.it/0psllg
The third book ‘Time for Margot to Go to Bed’, a bedtime story is published two months ago.
Margot is sad because she has to start hibernation. That’s very unusual as she normally loves to sleep! Her friends help her find out why she’s in tears. Together they find some solutions, and soon Margot can go to sleep with a smile.
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