I have always told my husband and kiddos that someday I am going to have a little land with a big hill where I can sit and watch my cow wander around, my chicken peck the ground and my tamed grizzly bear roll around in his favorite watering hole…yes, you read it right, just 1 cow and 1 chicken!
Oh, and of course the bear… who wouldn’t want that?
I just want to be able to sit out in the pasture of green grass and watch the cow who I would most definitely name Loraine and Wallace my bear play, eat, lay in the sun and sit down beside me and let me rub their fur and just be there…in the moment. Heidi the chicken, I know will be snooty so we will probably just see her when she wants to be seen. I know, I know this sounds far-fetched, maybe even ludicrous, I mean who would put these three animals on the same plot of land and expect them to live in harmony… but it isn’t totally out of the question for these three to get along, anything can happen, anything happens all the time.
So today when I was looking through all the new library books at school, I came across Sheep Dog and Sheep Sheep. Two different kind of friends who are more of a team than they realized.
Sheep Sheep is a girly little sheep who loves to dance, she is happy and doesn’t really have a care in the world. She is a little clumsy, naïve, even a little spacey but you can’t help but love her. One day she is dancing and turning like a ballerina through the farm where she lives when she bumps into Sheep Dog and they become instant friends. She takes one look at him and is determined to help him with his job of being a “sheep dog” because she herself is an expert at watching sheep too! She decides to put his hair up in a big bow and out of his eyes, so he can watch the sheep better. Now that his eyesight has improved, he is able to save her from the coyote that he sees sneaking up behind her. Next, she gets him a pair of binoculars so he can watch all the sheep at once, then informs him that he needs a map so he can track them as well. While going to get him a map, dancing and twirling like she does with her eyes closed and oblivious to her surroundings, Sheep Dog saves her from yet another dangerous situation.
So now that his hair is up, they have binoculars and the map, she starts to look for all the other sheep, they are nowhere to be found…turning back towards Sheep Dog quickly she asks excitedly “Did you lose them?” “Where are they”? After a silent moment…
“You’re the only sheep”, replied Sheep Dog.
She sat down and thought about being the only sheep and not a sheep sheep and she became still and quiet. Sheep dog could see that she was feeling confused and alone suddenly, so he tells her that maybe she really isn’t a sheep sheep after all, but a Dog sheep and it’s her job to watch the dog. After a few moments she realizes he is totally right and declares that she is obviously the best dog watcher ever!
Sheep sheep was feeling melancholy and it was her very different friend who gave her the new outlook and courage of being the only one like her on the farm.
Wouldn’t it be a beautiful thing if we could be who we wanted to be, who we were meant to be, instead of what we thought everyone else thought we should be? But even more so, wouldn’t the world be a remarkable place where the people we see every day; friends, neighbors, strangers, coworkers, just other humans in general…wouldn’t it be grand if we were all different but realized we were all the same and could get along like these two friends did. A place where we can encourage each other, embrace your neighbors’ views, respect one another, help others instead of hurting them? I think its possible, I think it could be done.
So, my little farm that I have always wanted…I’m going to hold out for it… I believe that anything can happen, because anything happens all the time.
Sheep Dog and Sheep Sheep is written and illustrated by Eric Barclay. I plan on reading it next week to all my littles as they come to library for story time!