Edmund Pickle Chin: A Donkey Rescue Story
Clara Bowman-Jahn and Susan April Elwood, Authors
Lynne Bendoly, Illustrator
eTreasures Publishing, April 26, 2014
Suitable for ages: 4-10
Theme: Animal Rescue
Today you are in for a special treat. I am the fifth stop or the tail end of the donkey blog tour! I have the pleasure of interviewing the star of the book, Edmund Pedro Pickle Chin Big Head Ed Elwood. He is 10 years old and lives at Everymay Farm, a non-profit rescue for farm animals in rural Georgia. It was founded by Susan and Tom Elwood in 2007. According to Susan, Edmund stands watch over the smaller critters and has become their protectors. He even tolerates goat head blows to the chest and waits to eat until the other animals have finished. Susan says, he can also be quite comical when people are around. Although he is still very shy, he will “curl his upper lip or blow donkey boogers on well-meaning visitors. What do you expect, he’s an ass!”
I think it’s time to turn the spotlight on Edmund and hear what he has to say. So, here’s Edmund…
Edmund, you are such a charmer with that great big donkey smile. What do you think about having a book written about you?
[E] GREAT! I feel I should have hoof printed the contract, but feel really good about what Susan and Clara have created. Susan tells me the book will raise children’s awareness of patience and compassion towards one another and animals. Plus, it will hopefully help my animal friends here on the farm, so it feels right.
Do you like your name? Do you know words? Are you a celebrity in town?
[E] I LOVE my names. In fact I have many nicknames as you will find out in MY book! Which one I like best is a hard question. EDMUND, is probably my favorite. I know it and respond to it when Susan calls to me. That’s not the only word I know — cookie, apple, Lambert and “let’s get some grain.” This may not seem like a big deal to some of you, but I bet the goats don’t know that many words. We donkeys love to talk! As for being a celebrity, the farm isn’t open to the public, so my fans are limited. I am secretly waiting for my first fan mail!
What was it like for you to come to Everymay Farm? Were you afraid?
[E] I wasn’t sad to leave the last farm, because as the book tells, it wasn’t a very nice place for me. I was scared because I didn’t know if my new home would be better. I had been moved around before, and I wasn’t wanted at any of my past homes. After just one night at Evermay, I knew I was going to love it there. I wasn’t tied to a tree! I could run around if I wanted, and I did!!!
How long did it take for you to trust people?
I trust Susan, but I’m still nervous around strangers, especially the person who comes every so often and pokes me with needles “for my own good.” Don’t get me started on the one that comes over with a sack full of tools used on my feet. I try really hard to put up with them because Susan is there, and she promises she’ll never to let anyone ever mistreat me again. I also have a friend named Scott who brings me apples. I bellow when I see his truck coming down the road and always meet him at the fence. He calls Evermay the “Hilton” for unwanted animals, but I don’t know what a Hilton is. I do know what it feels like to be wanted.
What is the favorite song that Susan sings to you? Do you have a favorite song for Susan?
[E] Can I be honest…she can’t sing. My ears are big and sensitive like a dog’s. That’s why when the train rolls by or a siren goes off, I bellow like a dog barks to block the high-pitched sound from hurting my ears. Her singing is kinda like that, but I know the kid means well. She makes up a song for every critter on the farm.
I’d probably bellow my version of My Girl, by “The Temptations.” I‘ve got sunshine on a cloudy day…When it’s cold outside, I’ve got “EVERMAY.”
I think I could do a pretty good job with singing Aretha Franklin’s Rescue Me. For the most part though, Susan is the one who sings around here.
How did you feel when other animals started arriving at Everymay? Were you jealous, excited or anxious?
[E] I had been with other animals where I was before and I chased them. That is why my previous owners tied me to a tree. When Everymay started to grow and new animals arrived, I got excited. Susan taught me patience by introducing me to one new friend at a time. I’m always very excited to have furry friends!
I hear that you are an ambassador for the farm. What do you do?
[E] I’ve been called the poster child for Evermay. It turns out that I’m quite photogenic. My picture is used a lot on our Facebook page. I meet and greet critters and humans alike here on the farm. The picture book tells a little more about my duties as an ambassador. I don’t want to give to too much away!
Who are your best animal friends?
[E} Lambert the goat is my BFF. He arrived shortly after me and we hit it off right away. Well I might have gotten a little excited over his arrival at first, but I was still learning. I tried to get him to move up the field when he was only three months old. He wasn’t moving fast enough, so I picked the little guy up by the tail. Susan was NOT happy. I wasn’t allowed to be alone with Lambert for a very long time. I don’t want Lambert to leave me again, so I won’t do that anymore. If Lambert is taken away from me, I scream as loud as I can. And, he screams right back! My bellow can be heard a long distance by neighbors.
There is also a miniature mare I am quite fond of. Her name is Bella. We secretly meet by the fence under the elm tree. I could stand there for hours as long as she’s there. She’s so pretty!
What is the funniest thing that has happened to you?
[E] Flies can be very bothersome during Georgia’s hot summers. To help me, Susan bought me a donkey fly mask. When I wore it for the first few times, I had difficultly walking! I kept taking really high steps and even missed my footing. I had to learn to look past the mesh in the mask instead of at the mesh that was so close to my face. Susan said I looked like I had “a few too many.” I’m not sure what she meant by that. You can never have too many apples.
What is you favorite foods? How many time do you eat a day?
[E] I graze most of the day with my goat pals. We are fed grain and hay twice a day. My favorite foods are apples and pears! Susan loves me so much that she planted pear trees. I also get carrots and ginger snaps made from the old family recipe. For the anniversary of my arrival to the farm every year I get a special dessert. This year it was carrot cake, last year apple muffins. In the summer I have watermelon, and I love to blow it out my nostrils when no one is expecting it!
What do you want to say to Susan and Clara?
[E] Thank you for giving me the chance to give back through this joint effort. It’s a grand story! I would also like to thank my illustrator Lynne Bendoly for making me look so adorable! And Susan, you scratch my left side more than the right.
Thank you for the interview. I appreciate your wanting to hear my side of this tale.
Hee Haw…Hee Haw…Hee Haw,
Edmund Pedro Pickle Chin Big Head Ed Elwood
Authors Clara-Bowman Jahn and Susan April Elwood encourage you to read every post, follow the blog and comment for prizes. The reader who follows each blog and comments on each stop of the tour will get first prize. And if there are many winners, they will deliver!
First prize is a print book of both Edmund Pickle Chin and Clara’s Annie’s Special Day. Second prize is either a print copy of Edmund or of Annie, you get to pick and finally third prize is a copy of the ebook of Edmund Pickle Chin, a Donkey Rescue Story.
BLOG TOUR DATES
May 26 / animal abuse and mistreatment Joanna –www.joannamarple.com
May 29/ author collaboration Stacy – http://www.stacysjensen.com
May 30/ PPBF and review Vivian – http://viviankirkfield.com/
June 2/ author interview Erik – www.ThisKidReviewsBooks.com
June 4/ Edmund interview Patricia – http://childrensbooksheal.com
June 9 /teacher info and guide Susanna – http://susannahill.blogspot.com