I am going to tell you the story of a dear, good little girl, called Curly Locks. Of course that was not her real name; her real name was Alice, but she was called Curly Locks because she had such beautiful hair, which hung down her back in golden ringlets. Some people think that all the good children are in story-books; that there were no real good children. Yes, I have actually heard some grown-up people say this, that all the live children were bad, and all the good ones were in story-books. Now I think that people who believe this, must have been very bad themselves when young, and so have a bad opinion of children generally. Curly Locks was an unusually good child, good enough to write a whole book about. Never shall I forget the first time I ever saw her, for never did I see a prettier picture, no, not in all the art galleries of Europe. She was sitting in a large, velvet chair sewing doll-clothes, at the same time singing a sweet song, stopping now and then to tell dollie to be good and go to sleep, though poor dollie looked as if she was not very comfortable. I have tried to show you in the picture here how she looked, but the picture of a pretty little girl could never be as pretty as the little girl herself.
Curly Locks lived in a very large city and went to a Kindergarten. Do you go to a Kindergarten, little Reader? I hope so, for they are the nicest places in the world for small children. I must tell you about a party that the children had who went to the Kindergarten with Curly Locks. Some kind ladies wished to have a free Kindergarten for little boys and girls who were not able to pay, so it was suggested that there should be a children's féte at one of the ladies' houses who lived a short distance in the country.
To make it more interesting, they concluded that the children should wear fancy costumes. Well, it was a beautiful sight: so many little people dressed in so many different styles; there were Lords and Ladies, princes and peasants, and all sorts of characters represented; but I will not describe any except that of Curly Locks. She went as the "Mary that had the little Lamb, whose fleece was white as snow." Fortunately a few weeks before the féte came off, her uncle, who lived in the country, sent her for a present the dearest little white lamb. Oh! how Curly Locks loved it, and how delighted she was when her mother told her that she could take it to the party with her.
She had named it Snow Drop, because it looked so pure and white when she first saw it. She had to have it washed for the party though, or she could not have sung "its fleece was white as snow." You can not keep lambs white in large cities very well. Snow Drop was worthy his name though, when dressed for the party—he had a blue ribbon with a tiny silver bell around his neck. I think Curly Locks with her little lamb at her side, was more admired than any other character at the fête, and she enjoyed it all so