When is a bookstore not a bookstore…certainly we have books galore…

but I think that sometimes it all depends on who comes in the store.


Some people come in for the air-conditioning…some to get out of the rain

Some people only peek their heads in and quickly pull them out again.


There is one women who comes in…an older woman…she always wears a hat.

She sits in a chair near the counter and all she wants to do is chat.


Yesterday a mother carrying her daughter on her shoulder walked into the store

Her daughter quickly smiled then toddled away when her mom set her on the floor.


The days when my children and grandchildren were that small are long ago in the past.

I had forgotten, in the interim, how something that small could move so fast.


Her mother immediately shot me a smile…or was it a look of dread?

“She headed down that aisle.” I pointed. “Toward the children’s section.” I said.


As her mother ran to the back of the store…now fully engrossed in the hunt

I had to smile as her daughter…had already returned to the front.


I heard her mother call her name…in that deep voice of a headmaster…

which only caused her daughter to smile and run away a little faster.


As I watched the daughter play this game and heard her mother’s sighs

I remember back to those sweet days of my own parental exercise.


The mother finally corralled her daughter…(she somehow found a way)

saying, “I don’t think the bookstore was a good idea…we’ll come back another day.”


And again in the interim I had forgotten toddlers are smarter than we think…

because as she waved goodby from her mother’s shoulder…I’m sure I saw her wink!


When is a bookstore not a bookstore?  

When it’s a place in which people peek…

When it’s a place to sit and chat a while…

or for a child to play hide and seek.

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I saw it as I walked one day…an acorn in the snow

and I stopped for a moment to wonder…what makes this acorn grow?


What makes this little tiny seed…barely bigger than a pea…

what makes this little acorn transform into a tree?


Certainly it must be planted with care…for it’s roots need to take hold 

If it’s ever to withstand the summer heat and endure the winter cold.


And an acorn needs to be cared for…of this I have no doubt 

It needs love…it needs to be nurtured…if it’s ever going to sprout.


And once it peeks out of the ground…once it’s leaves begin to show

that little tiny acorn…needs a lot of room to grow.


And it will always need nature’s protection as it’s life ebbs and flows

it will always need her patience and her caring…no matter how tall it grows.


As I saw that little acorn…and fancied it a full grown tree

standing in it’s imaginary shade…this thought occurred to me


Every child…every baby…is like that acorn in the snow.

They need what every acorn needs if they ever are to grow.


As parents we must understand…how tall our children grow


depends on how we care for them…when they are but acorns in the snow.

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When he was but a child his parents often smiled

when he wanted them to read him Peter Pan.

And when they read, “the end." he’d say, “Please, read it all again.”

“This time a little slower if you can.”


So they’d read it all again…and again and again and again

for that is what mothers and fathers do

because if it is loved by their son…and he is having fun

they find…they love it too.


When she was a but child her parents often smiled

when she wanted to climb their tallest tree.

She would climb up and down and then… say, “I want to climb again

there is still so much up there I want to see”.


So they’d watch her climb again…and again and again and again

for that is what mothers and fathers do

because if it is loved by their daughter…when they stand under that tree and spot her

they find…they love it too.


But sons and daughters grow…as all parents know

for life is nothing if not fleet.

The woman and the man move on from climbing trees and Peter Pan

and keeping up with what they love’s no easy feat.


So they watch and often worry as life seems to scurry

trying to love what they love too.

Their children may no longer heed them 

but they will be there if they need them

for that is what loving parents do.


And though they’re sad life moves so fast…from the present to the past

there is one thing that keeps parents happy too…

As they ride life’s ebb and flow…they are overjoyed to know

the things their children love may change

but not the who.


And there will come a day…when they are old and grey…

(for this is exactly what parents do)

A day they’ll look back when they can…

and remember climbing trees and Peter Pan


and they’ll remember how they loved them too…

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After the birth of his first child a son asked his father,

“How much influence will I have in my son’s life 

and how far will my influence extend?”

The father looked at his son and smiled…

“Well son, that depends.” 


“Will your children grow up to be kind and loving?”

“Will they be people you are proud of?”

That depends on if you’re teaching them 

how to be kind, 

how to be gentle… 

how to love.” 


“Will they grow up with prejudices?”

 “Will hate and bigotry they pursue?”

“That depends on while they’re growing up 

if they see hate or acceptance in you.”


“Will they grow up unselfish and generous, 

or will they in themselves be immersed?”

“That depends of if your teaching them 

to put themselves or others first.”


“Will they grow up greedy and miserly…

will they take what isn’t theirs?”

“That depends on if you’re teaching them 

not only how to accumulate 

but how to share?”


“Will your children grow up happy 

or will they end up sad and blue?”

His dad looked him in his eyes and said, 

“Son, that depends on you.”


He is proud of the adults his children grew up to be

and when they ask him how far their influence will extend 

he’ll be ready with his answer


he will tell them…that depends.

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As your children, Moms and Dads, we’d like for you to know

we’re glad you were around to help us all to grow.


You understood that our time as children is short…how it only lasts a little while

In that time you taught us how to be happy…you taught us how to smile.


You showed us that we mattered…we think that is the key

You loved us for who we are…not for who you wanted us to be.


You understood how to be a parent…how we were your priority

You knew your jobs were important…but also…so were we


You knew we were your children…not distractions you could shirk

In fact…you showed us every day we were your most important work.


You taught us to be accepting and kind…so when our childhood ends

We would be good people…good husbands, wives and friends.


Here are two things we’d like to tell you…two things we hope you never forget

The first…we will always be your children no matter how old we get.


The second is just a little something we shall forever be counting on…

always send us a goodnight kiss…even when we’re gone. 


And now that our childhood is ending…(like we said it only lasts a little while)

we want to thank you for giving us the kind of childhood we can look back on and smile.


Thank you for loving us every day…like you did the day we came


and making it so easy…for us to do the same.

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I am your baby…just born yesterday…I have all my fingers…all of my toes

and even though I can’t talk yet…here are 10 things I’d like you to know.


You will receive  a lot of good and bad advice…

you won’t always be able to tell them apart

so the first thing I have to tell you….

is to trust yourself and follow your heart 


Please…never call me stupid or I might end up feeling that way.

protect me….keep me safe and warm…life will be more appealing that way


And don’t be alarmed if I get hurt…when I bruise…be there to soothe and numb it…

remember your job is to help me learn about life…

not to keep me protected from it


Mistakes are just a part of who I am…and in my life they will be interspersed

So if you want me to believe in myself…

you must believe in me first.


I will be a child for a while…so be forgiving and patient with me

even the times when I make it difficult for you to be the parents you imagined you’d to be.


Finally, remember to love me no matter what… it’s the last thing I need you to know

your love is something I always will need…something I’ll never outgrow.


So there you have it…10 things you should know…

at least I think that’s the right amount…

after all I was only born yesterday…

I can’t talk 


how can you expect me to count!

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This question was posed to fathers…

What makes an awesome dad?

Some men said, ‘I need to make a lot of money,

to give my children all the things I never had.’


‘I need a big house with lots of rooms and a place for the kids to play outside.

The bigger house the better’…some other men replied.


So many men compared money to happiness

and so many more men seemed in sync…

until one man stepped up with an answer

that made the others think.


“I want to give my children my time.” he said.

“I want all my children to know

that I will always be there when they need me

that I’ll be there to watch them grow.”


So father’s…


on this Father’s day (and every day)

wherever you may wander…

Perhaps, ‘What makes an awesome dad?’

is a question you should ponder.


And you needn’t look too far…

for the answer surely graces

the glow in your children’s eyes…

and the smiles on their faces.



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He was about to become a father…yes, a child he would beget!

So he browsed through countless bookstores…and he surfed the internet.


He was searching for a book on parenting…because he didn’t have a clue…

but there were a million books with a million different experts and a million points of view.


He was overwhelmed, he couldn’t possibly read them all…

then he thought back to his childhood

back to when he was growing up…and how all his memories were good.


He thought back with a smile…his life seemed like paradise.

So he sat down with his parents and he asked for their advice.


“I want to be a good father.” He said. “The best Dad I can be.

I want to be the kind of parent you both have been to me.”


His parents smiled inwardly…his mom wiped away a tear.

Has there ever been a better statement to reach a parent’s ears?


“We only had two principles.” Mom said, with an approving smile from Dad.

“They were the same two fundamentals that our own parents had.”


“Every child needs to know they’re loved,” Mom said, “from January to December.”

“And it’s up to you as a parent,” Dad continued, “to give them good things to remember.”


He and his wife took these words to heart, 

they tried to make their children’s world a paradise…

and there came a day they, too, had to smile 

when their son, 

about to be a father,


asked for their advice…

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He was too busy dreaming of a much more wonderful life

That he forgot to take the time to enjoy his children and his wife.


He was too busy working…always on the go

That he forgot to be around…to watch his children grow.


He was too busy making money…

dreaming of that upward climb.

He forgot all his family ever needed…

all they ever wanted... 

was his time


He was too busy dreaming…

as he looks back this makes him sad.

He was too busy dreaming of the life he could have had…


He was so busy dreaming of a life he never knew

he failed to recognize and enjoy his dreams

that already had come true.


He was to busy dreaming…

of a more successful, prosperous fate…

He was too busy dreaming…

and now it’s much too late.



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