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Pooh Bear’s Gift

My son likes Winnie the Pooh. Actually, it’s a bit beyond like. If a day goes by without him watching a Winnie the Pooh episode or reading a Pooh story, he’s more cranky than I am on the days I skip my chai.Allen with Pooh and Tigger

But who doesn’t love Pooh? Who couldn’t love pretty much all the characters, in their own way?

The other day, Allen was watching the original Pooh movie… you know, the one we all probably watched when we were kids.

It came to the part about Eeyore’s birthday, where he is not surprised that no one knew it was his birthday. He’s just sitting there, gloomy as ever. Pooh and Piglet decide they should get a gift for him and rush off to their respective houses to find something.

Pooh finds a pot of honey (what else?) and begins the walk to Eeyore’s houseless hill. On the way, he gets a rumbly in his tumbly and decides he better sample the honey, “to make sure it’s okay”. Before he knows it, the honey is gone and he’s left with an empty—and rather sticky—pot. He heads to Owl’s tree house and Owl scribbles a birthday message on the pot, so that Pooh can present Eeyore with “a useful pot” for his birthday.

Meanwhile, Piglet finds the perfect gift, a red balloon that was three times his size. As he heads off to find Eeyore, the inevitable happens: the balloon pops.

Piglet arrives first with his “gift”, stammering his way through the story of what happened as he presents the broken and deflated red balloon. Just then, Pooh shows up with his gift.

“It’s a useful pot, and it’s for keeping things in,” he cheerily states to Eeyore.

“Like a balloon?” Eeyore asks.

“Oh, no. A balloon is too big to…” Pooh stops short when he sees Eeyore put the little red object into the pot and then pull it back out.

“Red, my favorite color…” Eeyore says…happily?

Parenting is like that sometimes. We have great ideas and concepts, hopes and the way we expect things to turn out. They never do turn out that way, though, do they? Sometimes we have to improvise, or come up with a whole new plan.

Then we have our kids, who don’t seem to mind; or if they do, they roll with the punches pretty well. Like Eeyore—well, at least in that scene—our kids are happy with what we have to offer. They are forgiving of the mistakes we make. Actually, they don’t even seem to notice.

Okay, I realize parenting is not quite as uncomplicated as an episode of Winnie the Pooh. Situations are not always resolved within 10-20 minutes. But at times like that, I can always put on Winnie the Pooh for my son, and make myself that cup of chai.


[Reposted from May, 2011]


A Worthy Resolution

New Year 2013 with childrenOn my eleventh birthday, I got my first diary. It was a gift from my grandmother. It was pink, with a picture of a girl on the front. It also had a lock and key.

I wrote in it faithfully … for a while at least. At that age, I didn’t have much else to do.

Then the inevitable happened. I forgot to write in it for a while. I opened it, apologizing to the inanimate pages that I hadn’t written in for a while, tried to remember everything that had occurred over the past month or so, promptly got overwhelmed and closed the book once more.

A similar cycle continued over the years. At the start of a New Year or on my birthday, I would begin with a new resolution to write in my diary every day.

Sometimes I kept my daily journal for a while, but found it mundane to repeat the same things day after day:

I ate breakfast; I did school; I took the dog for a walk; I read a book; I got in an argument with my little brother.

Needless to say, it wasn’t long before I stopped keeping a diary. From time to time, I would make an effort, like when my daughter was born, or when I discovered that my kids were growing up waaaaaay too fast and I didn’t want to forget those special moments. But life always shoved itself into the forefront and pushed reminiscing to the back. My diary was forgotten again.

A New Year is ahead once more. Time continues racing. And my days remain as busy as ever. Yet, an idea forms in my mind.

What about a diary of “lasting” moments?

Not every moment. Not what I ate for breakfast or what I managed to clean up in the house or what work project I completed.

Lasting moments…the ones that tend to remain in the heart long after they are over.

It doesn’t have to be hugely unique or expensive. It can be….

  • A story read, with a child sitting on my lap, excitedly asking “What happens next?”
  • A project done together, even if the finished product isn’t perfect.
  • An afternoon outing to a park, complete with races or a game of hide-and-seek.
  • Watching a video together around a bowl of popcorn.
  • Putting aside a personal to-do for the moment to take time for one of the kids.
  • Taking one of them for a surprise snack.
  • Enjoying a board game together.

Those simple things that, patchworked together, create the unique frame for the portrait of childhood memories, hung permanently upon their hearts.

I think I just found a worthy New Year’s resolution!