Pity poor Mary, whose frenzied efforts to prepare for the onslaught of winter leave her red-faced and exhausted! Short rhyming couplets speed readers from page to page as Mary's husband issues imperious commands from the comfort of his rocking chair. Faster and faster she works--digging, cooking, churning, canning, and preserving. Accompanied by a small black cat she races frantically from one task to another, indoors, outdoors, upstairs, and down, until her patience wears out and the inevitable occurs. Blegvad's detailed watercolor drawings of Mary's hard work and her increasingly frazzled appearance in the face of her husband's idleness will delight children, whose sense of poetic justice will be grandly satisfied on the final page.