Oh my, you see that last illustration as a tired couple at the end of a long day of parenting -- but for me, I instantly identify: it's the Empty Nest! The one that inspired the figurative one! They've sent their babies off to new trees, and there they are, looking older and tired, singing to each other as they hunt.
Never Tease a Weasel, written in 1964 by Jean Conder Soule, was re-illustrated by Booth five years ago. The text is a bouncy nonsense rhyme -- very catchy.
These too-old-for-picture-books girls give it the right level of enthusiasm:You could make a riding habitFor a rabbit if you choose;Or make a turkey perky with a pair of high-heeled shoes.You could make a collie jollyWith a red crocheted cravat;Or make a possum blossomIn an Easter Sunday hat.But never tease a weasel,not even once or twice.A weasel will not like it --And teasing isn't nice!
I was so happy to find
Possum Come a-Knockin' by Nancy Van Laan: she and Booth did the book back in 1990. Readers watch through a window as more and more family members (and pets) engage in various activities while a grinning top-hatted possum stands outside, knocking on the door.
The action accumulates: Granny knits, Ma cooks, Pappy whittles, Sis tosses Baby in the air -- and the possum keeps on pounding. The cat finally starts getting upset, leading the people to notice the cat, but not the possum.
When the humans finally open the door to see what's up, the possum has moved a few feet to hide behind the tree. On the last page, he's hanging by his tail from the branch, holding his hat on his head.
It's just full of fun, and great visual detail to follow through the story. I don't know why a book about a nighttime intruder should be so cheerful -- but it definitely is.