View Details. Request a review. Learn more Chicken Soup for the Soul PDF book by Jack Canfield Read Online or Free Download in ePUB, PDF or MOBI eBooks. Published in the book become immediate popular and critical · View flipping ebook version of Read Online (PDF) Chicken Soup for the Soul: Running for Good: Stories for Runners & Walkers to Get You Moving published by We would like to show you a description here but the site won’t allow blogger.com more · Laugh and cry reading these stories about the heart and soul of teaching in these inspirational Teacher Tales! You won’t be able to put down these stories about new and ... read more
The scar. The healing wound. And beneath it, she touched my heart. Then Ramona said, "I'll hold your hand while you touch it. That was the gift that Ramona gave me. That night as I lay down to sleep, I gently placed my hand on my chest and I left it there until I dozed off.
I knew I wasn't alone. We were all in bed together, metaphorically speaking, my breast, my chest, Ramona's gift and me. Betty Aboussie Ellis "Are You God? The little child had no shoes and his clothes were mere rags. A young woman passing by saw the little boy and could read the longing in his pale blue eyes. She took the child by the hand and led him into the store.
There she bought him some new shoes and a complete suit of warm clothing. They came back outside into the street and the woman said to the child, "Now you can go home and have a very happy holiday. Lighting candles is the traditional way that Jewish women welcome the Sabbath, but hospital regulations don't allow patients to light real candles. So we offer the next best thing—electric candlesticks that plug in and are turned on at the start of the Jewish Sabbath on Friday at sundown.
The Sabbath is over Saturday night. Sunday morning, I retrieve the candlesticks and store them away until the following Friday, when another volunteer comes to distribute them to that week's group of patients. Sometimes I see the same patients from the previous week. One Friday morning, as I was making my rounds, I encountered a woman who was very old—perhaps She had short snow-white hair that looked soft and fluffy, like cotton. Her skin was yellow and wrinkled, as if her bones had suddenly shrunk and left the skin around them with nothing to support it and nowhere to go; now it just hung in soft folds on her arms and face.
She looked small there in the bed with the blanket pulled up under her arms. Her hands, resting on top of the cover, were gnarled and worn, the hands of experience. But her eyes were clear and blue, and her voice was surprisingly strong as she greeted me. From the list that the hospital had given me, I knew her name was Sarah Cohen. She told me that she had been expecting me, that she never missed lighting candles at home and that I should just plug them in by the side of the bed where she could reach them.
It was obvious that she was familiar with the routine. I did as she asked and wished her a good Sabbath. As I turned to leave, she said, "I hope my grandchildren get here in time to say good-bye to me. As I left the room, I almost collided with a young woman who looked to be about twenty or so. She wore a long skirt, peasant-style, and her hair was covered.
I heard Mrs. Cohen say, "Malka! I'm glad you could get here. Where is David? It's hard for me to just deliver the candlesticks and leave, knowing that some of these patients are very sick, that some will probably die, and that they are someone's loved one.
I suppose, in a way, each of these ladies reminds me of my mother when she was in the hospital, dying. I suppose that's why I volunteer. All during the Sabbath, thoughts of Mrs. Cohen and her grandchildren kept intruding. On Sunday morning, I went back to the hospital to retrieve the candlesticks. As I approached Mrs. Cohen's room, I saw her granddaughter sitting on the floor outside her door. She looked up as she heard my cart approach.
She told me that Mrs. Cohen had taught her and her brother, David, everything they knew about being religious. Their parents had divorced when they were very young and both parents had worked long hours. She and her brother spent most weekends with their grandmother. special in a way I can't even express. Going there was like entering a different world. My brother and I found something there that did not exist anywhere else for us.
I don't know how to make you understand what the Sabbath day meant for us—for all of us, Grandmother, David and me—but it was a respite from the rest of our lives. It was wonderful and it brought David and me back to our religion. David lives in Israel now. He couldn't get a flight out before today. He's supposed to be in around six, so if you could please leave the candlesticks until then, I'll gladly put them away after that. Malka explained. For my grandmother, the Sabbath was our day for happiness.
She wouldn't want to die on the Sabbath. If we could just make her believe that it's still the Sabbath, maybe she can hold on until David can get here. Just until he can tell her good- bye. I couldn't say anything, so I just squeezed her hand. There are some moments in time, some events, that can bond even total strangers.
Page 16 This was such a moment. For the rest of the day, I went about my business but couldn't stop thinking about the drama unfolding at the hospital. Whatever strength that old lady in the hospital bed had left was being expended in just staying alive. And it wasn't for herself that she was making the effort. She had already made it clear to me by her attitude that she didn't fear death. She had seemed to know and accept that it was her time, and was, in fact, ready to go.
For me, Sarah Cohen personified a type of strength I didn't know existed, and a type of love I didn't know could be so powerful. She was willing to concentrate her whole being on staying alive through the Sabbath. She didn't want her loved ones to associate the beauty and joy of the Sabbath with the sadness of her death.
And perhaps she also wanted her grandchildren to have the sense of closure that comes from being able to say good- bye to the one person who most profoundly affected their lives.
When I returned to the hospital Sunday night, I was crying before I even reached the room. I looked inside. The bed was empty and the candlesticks had been turned off. Then I heard a voice behind me say softly, "He made it. He's saying his prayers now. He was able to tell her good-bye and he also had good news—he and his wife are expecting a baby. If it's a girl, her name will be Sarah. I wrapped the electric cord around the base of the candlesticks. They were still warm. Marsha Arons More Than a Scholarship Great thoughts speak only to the thoughtful mind, But great actions speak to all mankind.
Emily P. Bissell You may have heard of Osceola McCarty. She's the year-old woman in Mississippi who had worked for over 75 years as a washer woman.
She made national headlines. What you have not heard is how Osceola's gift has affected my life. I am 19 years old and the first recipient of an Osceola McCarty Scholarship. I was a dedicated student, and I had my heart set on going to USM. But I missed being eligible for a regular scholarship by one point on my entrance exams, and a scholarship was the only way I could attend. One Sunday, I came across the story in the paper about Osceola McCarty and her generous gift.
I showed my mother the article, and we both agreed it was a great thing to have done. The next day I went to the financial aid office, and they told me there was still no money available for me, but if anything came up they'd call. A few days later, as I was running out the door to catch a ride with my mother to work, the phone rang. I stopped to pick it up, and while I heard my mother honking the horn for me to hurry up, they told me I had been chosen to receive the first Osceola McCarty Scholarship.
I was ecstatic! I ran out as fast as I could to tell my mother. She had to call the office again herself to make sure it was true. I first met Osceola at a press conference—meeting her was like finding family. Osceola never married or had children, so my family has since become her family. My grandma and she talk on the phone regularly and do errands together, and she joins us for family functions.
Once we got around to talking about ice cream. We found out Osceola hadn't had much experience with ice cream, so we all packed into the car and went to the Dairy Queen, where we ordered Osceola her first banana split! She has ice cream a lot now. Osceola worked hard her whole life—from early in the morning to sunset—washing clothes by hand. I used to drive right by her house every day on my way to Page 17 school. Of course, at the time I didn't know it was her house, but I did notice how well kept the lawn was and how everything was clean and neat.
Recently I asked her why I never saw her once in all that time, and she answered, "I guess I was out in back, washing clothes. That is, when she's not out getting awards! Every time I go visit, she has a new award.
She's even gone to the White House. She is so happy and proud, though not at all conceited. We had to talk her into getting a VCR so she could tape the programs and see herself on TV—she just sits and smiles.
Osceola gave me much more than a scholarship. She taught me about the gift of giving. Now I know there are good people in the world who do good things. She worked her whole life and gave to others, and in turn she has inspired me to give back when I can. Eventually I plan to add to her scholarship fund. I want to give Osceola the family she's always wanted, so I've adopted her as another grandma.
She even calls me her granddaughter. And when I graduate from USM, she'll be sitting in the audience between my mother and my grandmother—right where she belongs. Stephanie Bullock It Couldn't Hurt Random Acts of Kindness—huh! I told my husband I love him.
I packed a note in my son's lunch box telling him how special he is. I opened the door for a lady in a wheelchair at Walgreens. I left a box of cookies for the mailman. I let someone go in front of me in the grocery line. I called my brother to tell him I miss him. I sent the Mayor a note saying what a good job he is doing.
I took flowers to the nursing home. I cooked some chicken soup for a friend who is sick. It couldn't hurt. It didn't hurt. He misses me too! I played Candy Land with my daughter. I thanked the person who bagged my groceries. I gave my assistant the day off with pay. I played ball with my dog.
I invited a woman who doesn't drive to lunch and to a movie. I got a massage for me. Random Acts of Kindness—hmmm, maybe I'll live this way all year. It was fun. He beamed. It only hurt a little. It felt good. I enjoyed myself. It felt marvelous. Sandy Ezrine A Goodnight Kiss Every afternoon when I came on duty as the evening nurse, I would walk the halls of the nursing home, pausing at each door to chat and observe.
Often, Kate and Chris would be sitting with their big scrapbooks in their laps and reminiscing over the photographs. Proudly, Kate showed me pictures of bygone years: Chris tall, blond and handsome; Kate pretty, dark-haired and laughing. Two young lovers smiling through the passing seasons. How lovely they looked, sitting together, the light from the window shining on their white heads, their time-wrinkled faces smiling at the memory of the years, caught and held forever in the scrapbooks.
How little the young know of loving, I'd think. How foolish to think they have a monopoly on such a precious commodity. The old know what loving truly means; the young can only guess. As the staff members ate their evening meal, sometimes Kate and Chris, holding hands, would walk slowly by the dining room doors.
Then the conversation would Page 18 turn to a discussion of the couple's love and devotion, and what would happen when one of them died. We all knew Chris was the strong one, and Kate was dependent upon him. How would Kate function if Chris were to die first? we often wondered. Bedtime followed a ritual.
When I brought the evening medication, Kate would be sitting in her chair, in nightgown and slippers, awaiting my arrival. Under Chris's and my watchful eyes, Kate would take her pill. Then very carefully Chris would help her from chair to bed and tuck the covers around her frail body. Observing this act of love, I would think for the thousandth time, Good heavens, why don't nursing homes have double beds for married couples?
All their lives they have slept together, but in a nursing home, they're expected to sleep in single beds. Overnight they're deprived of a comfort of a lifetime. How very foolish such policies are, I would think as I watched Chris reach up and turn off the light above Kate's bed. Then tenderly he would bend, and they would kiss gently. Chris would pat her cheek, and both would smile. He would pull up the side rail on her bed, and only then would he turn and accept his own medication.
As I walked into the hall, I could hear Chris say, "Good-night, Kate," and her returning voice, "Goodnight, Chris," while the space of an entire room separated their two beds. I had been off duty two days. When I returned, the first news I heard after walking through the nursing home doors was, "Chris died yesterday morning.
It happened quickly. She sat in her chair, motionless, hands in her lap, staring. Taking her hands in mine, I said, "Kate, it's Phyllis. I placed my hand under her chin and slowly turned her head so she had to look at me.
I'm so sorry. She stared at me, puzzled, as though wondering how I had suddenly appeared. I'm so sorry about Chris. Tears welled up and slid down her wrinkled cheeks. Then gradually the staff worked her back into the old schedule. Often, as I passed her room, I would observe Kate sitting in her chair, scrapbook on her lap, gazing sadly at pictures of Chris.
Bedtime was the worst part of her day. Although she had been granted her request to move from her bed to Chris's bed, and although the staff chatted and laughed with her as they tucked her in for the night, still Kate remained silent and sadly withdrawn.
Passing her room an hour after she had been tucked in, I'd find her wide awake, staring at the ceiling. The weeks passed, and the bedtime wasn't any better. Kate seemed so restless, so insecure. I wondered. Why this time of day more than the other hours? Then one night as I walked into her room, only to find the same wide-awake Kate, I said impulsively, "Kate, could it be you miss your good-night kiss? It was as though I had opened the floodgates. Tears coursed down her face; her hands gripped mine.
Then her voice, small with age but still melodious, lifted softly in song: So kiss me, my sweet, and so let us part. And when I grow too old to dream, that kiss will live in my heart.
Phyllis Volkens Submitted by Jane Hanna EDITORS' NOTE: Phyllis Volkens, the author of this story, died two days after we located her in an effort to obtain permission to use her story see Introduction. Her husband, Stanley, told us how much it meant to Phyllis to be included in Chicken Soup for the Woman's Soul. We are honored to include "A Goodnight Kiss" in Phyllis's memory. All rights reserved Robbins Musk Corp. Gifts In my hands I hold a hardback copy of Jules Verne's Classic Science Fiction, torn airmail packaging scattered at my feet.
The inscription: "To Matt, with love from Grandpa Loren, San Francisco. The inappropriateness of the gift irritates me—a gift hurriedly bought with too little care given. But perhaps it is unfair of me to expect my father to know what a boy of nine would like. Then I remember last spring, when we visited San Francisco. Dad sprinted after a cable car, grabbing Matt's hand and leaping aboard.
Later he plucked a nickel off the street. When you put a coin on the track—the cable car almost cuts it in half! Less irritated, I stare out the window at Hondo, sleeping on the deck. He has been with us since he was eight weeks old.
Gray hairs cover the muzzle of his glossy black head, and the lids beneath his brown eyes droop slightly. His huge Lab feet splay when he walks, more gray hairs grow from between his pads. I think of my father's beard and how I have watched the streaks of gray widen until gray is all there is. Freckles rests next to Hondo, her border collie fur ruffling in the breeze.
Much of her puppy freckling has faded. I think back to last summer. Fourteen years represent a full life for a dog.
Hondo's moon had begun to wane, growing weaker with the setting of each sun. The time for a second dog had come, but it was with guilt that we brought Freckles home to the ranch. When she scrambled out of the truck, puppy legs trembling, Hondo was a perfect gentleman. He sniffed and she cowered. She whined and he licked. Tails wagged, and a friendship was born. Down at the barn, Freckles watched Hondo, a gracious teacher, sit patiently while we saddled the horses.
She sat down as well. The cats rubbed up against Hondo's legs and Freckles learned not to chase cats. We rode out to check heifers, and Hondo trotted faithfully behind. Freckles learned that it was not all right to harass a cow or deer. Freckles grew lanky, and a new sprightliness came to Hondo's step. Years fell away.
We began throwing sticks for him again, and he fetched until his panning jaws could no longer hold the stick. Freckles never learned to love the game, but she cheered him on anyway. He was given a brief reprieve, a second wind.
Then a hot summer day and too many miles traveled on dusty cow trails took their toll. Hondo collapsed in the corral. Soft coaxing and gentle stroking brought him around. Matt and Freckles looked on, watching him stagger to his feet and shake the dirt from his coat. Hondo drank deeply from the bucket by the house before climbing to the deck and taking up his post near the door.
The next time we saddled the horses and rode out into the pasture, we locked him in the horse trailer. He peered through the wooden slats, his feelings hurt beyond comprehension. After that we continued to take him with us on our rides.
His moon will wane, no matter how protective we are. I set the heavy volume of Jules Verne on the table and pick up the discarded packaging. Outside, a car drives by on the gravel road. Freckles hears the car and she stands, ears pricked forward. Hondo sleeps. It is not the noise of the car that finally awakens Hondo; the Page 20 high-pitched bark penetrates his increasing deafness and he lifts his head to look about.
He sees Freckles on duty, poised and ready. With a deep sigh of resignation, he lowers his head onto his paws and closes his eyes. I want to go outside and take Hondo's gentle head in my hands, look into his brown eyes and speak softly, letting him feel with his heart those things he can no longer hear me say. I want him to cling to my world a little longer.
Instead, I pick up the book and reread the inscription. Fourteen years separate Hondo and Freckles. Sixty-five years and a thousand miles separate my father from his grandson. Only a few more years of gift-giving stretch before him. He, too, counts the setting of each sun, watches the waning of his moon. Times does not allow him the luxury of sending only appropriate gifts. If in 10 years Matt opens this book, ready to dive 20, leagues beneath the sea, it will be his grandfather's words wishing him bon voyage.
Putting the heavy volume down softly on the table, I open the door and walk out onto the deck. Hondo's fur shines in the sunlight. He feels the vibrations of my steps and his tail begins to move slowly, back and forth. Page Lambert 1, Letters On November 15,,1 eagerly said "I do" to my dashing groom, who was proudly wearing his crisp, formal United States Army uniform.
Only a short eight months later, he was called to serve in World War II, bound for an unknown destination in the Pacific for an unknown period of time. When my young husband left, we made a promise to write each other every day we were apart. We decided we'd number each of the letters we sent so we would know if any went astray.
Writing to each other daily, we found there were many times that there was little to say other than "I love you. The war found my husband, an Army dentist, right on the front lines. Still, whether he was in the heat of battle in the Aleutians, Okinawa, or the Philippines, he always found some time to write every day.
On occasion, he even found time for more than just writing. When he had spare moments, he would make me gifts of jewelry out of any indigenous materials he could find. During one of the lulls in battle in the Philippines, he found time to carve a beautiful mahogany letter opener with my name, Louise, carefully engraved on one side of the handle, and Philippines engraved on the other side.
He told me the letter opener was to help me open my daily letters from him. More than 50 years later, that letter opener still sits on my desk and is used daily to open the mail, although none of the letters I receive today are as important as the ones I received from him during the war.
There were days and weeks when I would get no mail. Of course, that would leave me fearful about my husband's well-being—many of the men in his troop had already been killed. Inevitably though, the mail service would catch up and a slew of letters would arrive at one time. I would busy myself sorting them by number so I could read them in chronological order and savor each one. In one of the letters, when my husband was in Hawaii, he asked me to send my measurements so he could have some lounging pajamas made for me by the famous Chinese tailors living on the island.
So I responded by sending him my measurements. Oh, those were the good old days. My husband received the letter but the measurements had been blacked out by the Army censors, who had thought I was trying to communicate to him by secret code. Somehow, the pajamas fit anyway. By November , the war was over and my husband was finally sent home.
We had not seen each other since he had left more than two years and four months earlier. We had spoken to each other by phone only once during that entire time. But since we had faithfully kept our promise to write daily, we each had written letters to each other— a total of 1, letters that had carried us both through the war.
When my husband returned from the war, we were fortunate to obtain a minuscule apartment in a tremendously tight real estate market in San Francisco. In these Page 21 box-like quarters there was barely room for the two of us, so to our regret, we had to dispose of all our letters.
In the years since the war ended, we've been fortunate to have never been apart for more than one or two days at a time, so we've had little opportunity to write each other letters again.
But through all the years, my husband has continued to show me and our children and grandchildren the devotion and love he showed me in those early days. We've just celebrated 53 years of being happily married, and while the letters from those first few years of our marriage no longer remain, the love within them will be forever engraved in our hearts.
Louise Shimoff PEANUTS. Reprinted by permission of United Feature Syndicate, Inc. Martha's Secret Ingredient It bothered Ben every time he went through the kitchen. It was that little metal container on the shelf above Martha's cookstove. He probably would not have noticed it so much or been bothered by it if Martha had not repeatedly told him never to touch it.
The reason, she said, was that it contained a "secret herb" from her mother, and since she had no way of ever refilling the container, she was concerned that if Ben or anyone else ever picked it up and looked inside, they might accidentally drop it and spill its valuable contents.
The container wasn't really much to look at. It was so old that much of its original red and gold floral colors had faded. You could tell right where it had been gripped again and again as the container was lifted and its tight lid pulled off.
Not only Martha's fingers had gripped it there, but her mother's and her grandmother's had, too. Martha didn't know for sure, but she felt that perhaps even her great- grandmother had used this same container and its "secret herb. And she did, faithfully. Ben never saw Martha cook a dish without taking the container off the shelf and sprinkling just a little of the "secret herb" over the ingredients.
Whatever was in that container, it sure worked, for Ben felt Martha was the best cook in the world. He wasn't alone in that opinion—anyone who ever ate at their house grandly praised Martha's cooking.
But why wouldn't she let Ben touch that little container? Was she really afraid he'd spill its contents? And what did that "secret herb" look like? It was so fine that whenever Martha sprinkled it over the food she was preparing, Ben couldn't quite make out its texture.
She obviously had to use very little of it because there was no way of refilling the container. Somehow Martha had stretched those contents over 30 years of marriage to date. It never failed to effect mouthwatering results. Ben became increasingly tempted to look into that container just once, but never brought himself to do so. Then one day Martha became ill.
Ben took her to the hospital, where they kept her overnight. When he returned home, he found it extremely lonely in the house. Martha had never been gone overnight before. And when it neared supper time, he wondered what to do—Martha had so loved to cook, he'd never bothered to learn much about preparing food. As he wandered into the kitchen to see what might be in the refrigerator, the container on the shelf immediately came into view. His eyes were drawn to it like a magnet—he quickly looked away, but his curiosity drew him back.
Curiosity nagged. What was in that container? Why wasn't he to touch it? What did that "secret herb" look like? How much of it was left?
Ben looked away again and lifted the cover of a large cake pan on the kitchen counter. there was more than half of one of Martha's great cakes left over. He cut off a large piece, sat down at the kitchen table, and hadn't taken more than one bite when his eyes went back to that container again. What would it hurt if he looked inside? Why was Martha so secretive about that container, Page 22 anyway?
Ben took another bite and debated with himself— should he or shouldn't he? For five more big bites he thought about it, staring at the container. Finally he could no longer resist.
He walked slowly across the room and ever so carefully took the container off the shelf— fearing that, horror of horrors, he'd spill the contents while sneaking a peek.
He set the container on the counter and carefully pried off the lid. He was almost scared to look inside! When the inside of the container came into full view, Ben's eyes opened wide—why, the container was empty except for a little folded slip of paper at the bottom. Ben reached down for the paper, his big rugged hand struggling to get inside.
He carefully picked it up by a corner, removed it and slowly unfolded it under the kitchen light. A brief note was scrawled inside, and Ben immediately recognized the handwriting as that of Martha's mother. Very simply it said: "Martha—To everything you make, add a dash of love. Now he completely understood why it tasted so good. Submitted by Dot Abraham Reminisce magazine 2 ON ATTITUDE AND SELF-ESTEEM You don't get to choose how you 're going to die or when.
You can only decide how you 're going to live. Joan Baez Be a Queen EDITORS' NOTE: Over the years, we have been inspired by messages about love and the power of choice that great women of the world have given us.
One of the most inspiring messages has come through the words, actions, and examples of one of the world's most loved and respected women, Oprah Winfrey. Continually she reminds us that within every woman lies a queen, waiting to claim her glory. Referring to a theme used by Marianne Williamson in her book A Woman's Worth, Oprah said the following in a commencement address to the graduates of all-female Spelman College in Be a queen. Dare to be different. Be a pioneer. Be a leader.
Be the kind of woman who in the face of adversity will continue to embrace life and walk fearlessly toward the challenge. Take it on! Be a truth seeker and rule your domain, whatever it is—your home, your office, your family—with a loving heart. Be a queen. Be tender. Continue to give birth to new ideas and rejoice in your womanhood My prayer is that we will stop wasting time being mundane and mediocre We are daughters of God—here to teach the world how to love It doesn't matter what you've been through, where you come from, who your parents are—nor your social or economic status.
None of that matters. What matters is how you choose to love, how you choose to express that love through your work, through your family, through what you have to give to the world Own your power and your glory!
Oprah Winfrey Mama's Plan I suppose it was the reality of my first grandchild, Jamie, starting school that triggered the bittersweet memories of my first year of school. The year was I loved school: the smell of chalk and color crayons; the way the old wooden floors smelled after Jim the janitor had waxed them; and having my own desk that was just my size. There was, however, one overwhelming problem with school.
Daily when I walked the short distance home after school, Mildred would taunt me, hit me and scare me. I was absolutely terrified of her. She had failed first grade and was a year older than I.
Mildred didn't have any friends, so she seemed to concentrate on making enemies. Because I was one of the smallest children in first grade, she had selected me as her number one enemy. Then, when I stopped to adjust them, Mildred would slap me hard on the back. As soon as the dismissal bell rang each day, my heart started to pound and I blinked fast so I wouldn't cry. Pretty soon my mother figured out something was wrong at school. I didn't want to tell her about Mildred.
I sat close to the radio listening to The Lone Ranger, pretending not to hear her questions about school. Mother continued to question me, and finally I sobbed out the whole story. You can't. Everyone will think I'm a baby. She had to work. My father had died a few years earlier. I didn't have any sisters or brothers to watch after me. I couldn't imagine what my mother might do. I was certain there was no answer—no answer at all for a problem this big.
The next day at school, Miss Edna leaned over my desk and whispered, "Marion, dear, could you stay after school and help me with a project? I decided right then that all angels must have blue eyes and smell like Jergens hand lotion. I nodded eagerly. I remained joyfully at my desk when the dismissal bell rang. Mildred looked confused for a bit, but filed out with the others.
After a while Miss Edna said that I'd better be going on home. She stood on the front step of the school and waved to me. I skipped up the hill without any fear whatsoever.
Then, just as I got to the top of the hill, I heard familiar footsteps behind me. Mildred had waited for me. She immediately stepped on the back of my shoe and slapped my back. I cried. I couldn't help it.
When my mother saw my face after she got home from work, she questioned me. I begged not to go to school and didn't sleep much that night. The next morning she said, "Marion, I'm going to walk up the hill with you today.
I believe we'll see Mildred. She never bothered me on the way to school, only afterward. Don't say anything to Mildred. It will just make her mad. Let me stay home by myself. Please, Mama. I have a plan. Why couldn't my mother understand that no plan she had dreamed up was going to work? We bundled up against the bitter cold and started walking up the hill. Maybe we wouldn't see Mildred, I hoped.
But my mother had this confident look. I knew the look well, and I had a sinking feeling that we would see Mildred and that Mother would use her "plan. We waited a few horrible moments as she approached us. She pretended not to see us, recognizing that I had my mother with me.
Mildred stopped, frozen as still as a statue. Her hands and face were bright red from the intense cold. Her oversized coat hung open. There were only two buttons on it.
The rest were missing. I was so wrapped up I could hardly walk. I even had to wear undershirts. Mother stooped down to Mildred's level. She didn't say anything at first. Instead she rapidly buttoned Mildred's coat and turned the collar up around her neck. Then she fastened back this stubborn piece of hair that forever hung in Mildred's face.
I stood off to one side watching our breath linger in front of our faces in the frigid morning air, praying that no students would happen by and that my mother's plan would be over quickly. I need your help, Mildred. Their faces were inches apart. My mother's gloved hands held Mildred's cold ones as she spoke. She sort of needs a special best friend at school.
Someone to walk up the hill with her after school. You look like you'd be a fine friend for her. Would you be Marion's friend, Mildred? She gave me a quick hug and called to us as though nothing unusual had happened. Have a good day. Once I cut my eyes over her way. Mildred was smiling! I'd never seen her smile before.
We walked up the hill each day after school together, and pretty soon we were talking, laughing and sharing secrets. Mildred started tying her hair back the way Mama had. Sometimes she even wore a hair ribbon. Someone sewed buttons on her coat, and she buttoned all of them and always wore the collar turned up. Somehow I started calling her "Mil. Mildred shot them a happy smile, but she always sat with me at lunch.
My mother usually included something in my lunch especially for Mil—even notes of gratitude. Mil always let me get in front of her in the line at the water fountain. Valentine's Day was a very important event in first grade back in the '40s. We made huge valentine boxes and set them on our desk for a valentine exchange. I pulled out an enormous valentine toward the end of the party.
Everyone stood up to see better. It was store-bought! And it had obviously cost a lot. Most everyone had made their valentines from red construction paper, lace and glue. Ahhh's and ohhh's floated out over the classroom and seemed to linger, suspended in the air, as I opened the magnificent valentine.
Printed neatly in bold red letters inside the card was: "From your best friend. She was sitting with her hands folded on top of her desk and smiling the biggest smile ever. She had a red ribbon in her hair. Mildred smiled a lot now. She was getting good grades now, too, and didn't stuff her papers inside her desk anymore. Her eyes darted over and met mine. Right then I knew my mother's plan had worked.
I didn't understand Mama's plan back in , or for years afterward. But along the way I discovered where my mother had got her remarkable plan. And I've learned that the plan works in all kinds of impossible situations: "Love is patient does not act unbecomingly is not provoked does not take into account a wrong suffered believes all things hopes all things endures all things.
Love never fails. Marion Bond West The name Mildred is a pseudonym. A Tale of Two Cities A traveler nearing a great city asked a woman seated by the wayside, "What are the people like in the city? Again the old woman asked about the people in the place the traveler had left. I was sorry to leave," declared the second traveler. Responded the wise woman: "So you will find them in the city ahead. What is right for one soul may not be right for another.
It may mean having to stand on your own and do something strange in the eyes of others. Eileen Caddy Giants, Wizards and Dwarfs was the game to play.
Being left in charge of about 80 children 7 to 10 years old, while their parents were off doing parenty things, I mustered my troops in the church social hall and explained the game. It's a large-scale version of Rock, Paper and Scissors, Page 25 and involves some intellectual decision making.
But the real purpose of the game is to make a lot of noise and run around chasing people until nobody knows which side you are on or who won. Organizing a roomful of wired-up grade-schoolers into two teams, explaining the rudiments of the game, achieving consensus on group identity—all of this is no mean accomplishment, but we did it with a right good will and were ready to go.
The excitement of the chase had reached a critical mass. I yelled out: "You have to decide now which you are—a GIANT, a WIZARD or a DWARF! A small child stands there looking up, and asks in a small concerned voice, "Where do the Mermaids stand? A long pause. A very long pause. You see, I am a Mermaid. She knew her category, Mermaid, and was not about to leave the game and go over and stand against the wall where a loser would stand.
She took it for granted that there was a place for Mermaids and that I would know just where. Well, where do the Mermaids stand? All the Mermaids-all those who are different, who do not fit the norm, and who do not accept the available boxes and pigeonholes? Answer that question and you can build a school, a nation or a world on it.
What was my answer at the moment? Video Audio icon An illustration of an audio speaker. Audio Software icon An illustration of a 3. Software Images icon An illustration of two photographs. Images Donate icon An illustration of a heart shape Donate Ellipses icon An illustration of text ellipses.
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by Jack Canfield, Mark Victor Hansen, Patty Hansen. Download Chicken Soup for the Kid’s Soul: Stories of Courage, Hope and Laughter for Kids ages (Chicken S or Read · Chicken Soup for the Girls Soul: Real Stories by Real Girls about Real Stuff PDF book by Jack Canfield Read Online or Free Download in ePUB, PDF or MOBI eBooks. Chicken Soup for the Soul PDF book by Jack Canfield Read Online or Free Download in ePUB, PDF or MOBI eBooks. Published in the book become immediate popular and critical View Details. Request a review. Learn more We would like to show you a description here but the site won’t allow blogger.com more · Laugh and cry reading these stories about the heart and soul of teaching in these inspirational Teacher Tales! You won’t be able to put down these stories about new and ... read more
I often complain about how quickly time flies. Now he completely understood why it tasted so good. She didn't say anything at first. To his surprise, a giant combination console color TV and stereo record player were delivered to his home. When he returned home, he found it extremely lonely in the house. Software Images icon An illustration of two photographs.Cohen and her grandchildren kept intruding. I finally understand the meaning of a term I've heard a million times: quality time. Often, as I passed her room, I would observe Kate sitting in her chair, scrapbook on her lap, gazing sadly at pictures of Chris. For me, Sarah Cohen personified a type of strength I didn't know existed, and a type of love I didn't know could be so powerful. Remember me on this computer.