OK, so I’ve had a little stroke of brilliance in all of this baby planning:

Do you remember the craze that swept America and Great Britain in the late seventies/early eighties when painter Kit Williams released a children’s picture book titled, “Masquerade?” The story was, on the surface, a fable about the Moon (a lady) falling in love with the Sun (a man). The Moon sends her friend Jack Hare (a rabbit courier) with a treasure to take to the Sun as a gift, but somehow along the way, Jack Hare loses the trinket.

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 The real-life mystery surrounding this fable was that the author had created a magnificent golden rabbit, worth over $5,000, and had buried the treasure somewhere in the British Isles. The 15 beautifully complex illustrations and accompanying verses in the book were actually hundreds of little clues as to the golden rabbit’s location. (Where, along his voyage, had Jack Hare misplaced the treasure?) Somewhere in each illustration is a bunny. It might be easy to spot or very difficult. It might be a topiary shrub shaped like a rabbit, or a gelatin mold with long ears. Either way, it’s there on each page if you look hard.

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For three years, thousands and thousands of Americans and Brits alike scoured the pages of the book and the British countryside, trying to decode the complex puzzle and learn the location of the rabbit. Public and private property alike were continually being dug up and destroyed in the hunt.

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Eventually, the rabbit was found. (Although the winner turned out to be a fraud many years later. He had not actually solved the puzzle to discover the location of the rabbit…and sadly, after a run of three years with no one solving the clues, a couple of science teachers had actually finally solved the puzzle, but the author received their correct solution two days after the fraudulent winner walked away with the prize. What a scandal!)

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ANYWAY…my brilliant idea is as follows:

 I would love to set up the baby nursery with a mural spanning all four walls, with background scenery that changes all over the place. Then, all over the walls, both up high and down low, have each of the 15 illustrations from the book framed and hanging where the background mural scenery flows right into the backgrounds of the framed pictures.

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 I think this would be SO neat. And there could be a garden outside with lots of little hidden rabbits and “treasures,” and celestial stuff everywhere…I am so excited about this idea!!

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 And I could make a little doll with a dress apron full of pockets like the “Penny Pocket” illustration from the book (second set of pictures from the top of this entry; the one on the right–always my favorite picture from the book when I was little). Oh, the ideas!!!

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 If anyone doesn’t remember this book, or if you remember it fondly and are feeling nostalgic, I’ve found an awesome website with some clues and comments and interesting tidbits of information on both the artist and the book:

http://www.bunnyears.net/kitwilliams/masq.html

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 Happy hunting!

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