Bats, Hats and Cats
Stories from Kelsi's Animal Sanctuary
Deborah J. Brown & Kelsi Gately
This book can be downloaded and read in Apple Books on your Mac or iOS device.
Bats, Hats, and Cats is a book for the young and the young at heart. This collection of stories about crazy bats, silly cats, and violet hats takes you on a magical journey as these animals move from Grammie Deb Brown’s Hoosier cottage in northern Indiana to her granddaughter Kelsi’s dorm room in Pensacola, Florida. Each little creature is lovingly handmade by Grammie, and each animal’s story is written to Kelsi in the form of a letter. Grammie sends Kelsi a new needle-felted animal every Monday of Kelsi’s freshman year at college. Once the wayward animals arrive at college and become part of Kelsi’s Crew, the fun begins and Kelsi sends Grammie weekly progress reports. Sometimes the animals drive Kelsi crazy when she is trying to study and she has to feed them some crackers to get them all calmed down. (Not animal crackers; the Crew are afraid of animal crackers, and they all start crying and wailing if they see a box of animal-shaped cookies.)
As you read this lovely little book to your kids, grandkids, nieces, nephews, and other youngsters, you will see the love that the whole Crew (including Grammie and Kelsi) have for each other. The stories alternate between humorous and serious. Lessons are taught, new words are learned, the alphabet is tackled, and the animals take on a life of their own as they join Kelsi in her studies. Read this book with someone. It’s full of things to shout and things to whisper. There are plenty of joyful yee-haws, and there are quiet moments as naming ceremonies take place. Memorization of the animal names and occupations is fun for kids and adults.
Grammie will tell you that one of the top five best moments in her life was the first time that Kelsi said the word “Grammie.” She remembers it like it was yesterday. With that one word, a new and most special relationship was hatched. Kelsi and Grammie have traveled together. They have visited New York; Washington, DC; Canada; the Caribbean; China; and many other fun and exciting places. They are also happy just relaxing and having movie marathons. They cook together, do crafts together, and play games together. Although Grammie is battling a serious life-threatening illness today, Kelsi visited her over the summer and sat with her and helped with her care. This summer, Kelsi taught Grammie about coloring, and they spend many happy hours coloring sketchbooks with colored pencils.