Introducing Turtle and Piplup

April 4, 2014

StoryCorp! with Sophia

Last week, my 10-year-old friend, Sophia, visited us for a fun week together in San Francisco, and a birthday finale weekend. We tromped around town to places like the Exploratorium and House of Air. We took BART to the public library where we interviewed each other for StoryCorps. We noodled around in our pajamas and tried really really really hard to get to bed on time, but if we had to fail at something, we were happy it was that.

As we did a lot of stuff, there was a a lot of coming and going. Each time I put the key in the front gate, Sophia would chirp, “Turtle and Piplup!”

Turtle n Piplup arrow

We laughed that the names sounded like a cartoon or a puppet show. Seed planted, every time we saw the names, we’d spin off into imagining aloud the story that would be Turtle and Piplup–who the characters would be, how they live, how they met, who they meet, and the adventures they get up to. All week, as we walked to the taco joint or moseyed past City Hall or wandered in the library aisles, we’d see things that looked like they’d belong in the story.

Before long, Turtle was a turtle, Piplup was a jerboa, their pet was a branchless tree, named Nubby of course, who lived in the bathroom, and in the nubbles of Nubby lived Tubs, the baby quokka. By the end of the week in our heads, Turtle and Piplup had already had a talk show, traveled to the moon on a screw they’d found in a chair they dissembled, and had the coolest how’d-you-meet story that either of us had ever witnessed. The episodes kept spinning and spooling into more.

Turtle n Piplup pic


Nubby and Tubs pic


When mom came up for the birthday finale weekend, she had planned a party at The Children’s Creativity Museum. She had her eye on the claymation studio, where you could sculpt figures and make a claymation video out of them. All partygoers on deck, each of us made a character, many brand new to the Turtle and Piplup imagination landscape. And then Sophia orchestrated them all… Here’s to a happy 11th year steeped in creativity and imagination that goes on and on and on.



Here’s a picture of Daddy behind the scenes.

Daddy pilots the rocket

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

the mom April 4, 2014 at 10:45 pm

what a fun recap of the Adventures of Turtle, Piplup, Sophia & Pema: The Musical! I am also loving the still photos, as I only came home with the video, no photos. It’s such a great story, thanks for writing it. Soph will be pleased to learn she made it into a blog! xoxo thanks for showing her such a fun and creative time!


Pema April 6, 2014 at 12:28 pm

We had a blast. Easy to be creative with a creative kid (apple doesn’t fall far from that tree). xo


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