Butterfly Thoughts — Can You Be A Butterfly

Butterfly Leaving Cocoon

Even A But­ter­fly Has To Work Hard

I was walk­ing with my lit­tle dog Brad War­ren yes­ter­day, and he found an empty cocoon cas­ing.  I could see the tiny open­ing where the lit­tle but­ter­fly flew out.

I can remem­ber a time when as a child when I really did see a but­ter­fly that was try­ing to escape from its cocoon.

It was so mind-boggling to see that frag­ile crea­ture fight­ing his way to escape that cov­er­ing. I stood there quite a while and began to worry that maybe that lit­tle insect might not be able to escape.


I decided it was time for me to come to the res­cue so I found a lit­tle branch and began to make a hole to help the but­ter­fly leave its shel­ter more eas­ily. My friend Janie stopped me and would not let me do that. She knew a lot more about but­ter­flies than I did.

She told me that if I helped the lit­tle crea­ture out that it would most prob­a­bly not live the day.

You see, all the flap­ping and strug­gling to break away from the nest was really help­ing the but­ter­fly to become strong and healthy.
All the hard work that was going on had a very good rea­son.  It was build­ing up the butterfly’s strength so it could fly.

Janie also told me that but­ter­flies have a spe­cial fat in the cocoon when they strug­gle to get out. This fatty oil goes all over its tiny body and wings. If the oil did not spread on its body, it would not be made safe from the weather and the elements.

The butterfly’s wings might even get break­able and cracked.
They most likely would fall apart and the lit­tle crea­ture would never be able to soar.

Janie explained to me that the but­ter­fly is made that way for a spe­cial reason.

Even though it works hard, feels trapped inside its cocoon, and want total free­dom;
it is in the hard work that is get­ting ready to be free and live in the beau­ti­ful out­side world.

This is such a great les­son for all of us to learn.

We all have to expe­ri­ence things in our life that are not easy.  We all have chal­lenges and strug­gles we have to go through.  There are even times we are unhappy and won­der if
we will ever be free from what makes us sad or worried.

But Remem­ber The Butterfly


Remember The Butterfly

Per­se­ver­ance Pays Off


There may be times in your life when you have to strug­gle or work hard to be suc­cess­ful.  Then – after you have done the hard work – and because you have been true to that goal you set–  you can feel free and full of hap­pi­ness that you have succeed.

Think about it.…..

Can You Be A Butterfly?

Love And Wisdom






Are You A Valentine Chocolate Surprise?

Are You A Valen­tine Choco­late Surprise?


Box Of Cholocates Almost Eaten

What Kind Of Choco­late Sur­prise Are You

How may of us look for­ward to Valentine’s Day when our friends and fam­ily give us that won­der­ful box of choco­late hearts we love so much?

What do you think is the best part of get­ting those sweets? Eat­ing them or guess­ing what fla­vors are inside? It’s a real choice for some of us to try to fig­ure out which ones will be the best.

This Valentine’s Day if you get a spe­cial gift like a big box of choco­late candy, see if you can do this:

1. Choose a piece that you think you might want to try, but don’t eat it right away. Do you think you can do that?

2. The best part of choco­lates is that they all hold a secret. Although all the can­dies have some dark and light choco­late on the out­side, they all have dif­fer­ent fla­vors on the inside. Some have straw­berry, some choco­late, vanilla, cherry, nut, and tof­fee.
You name it, it can be hid­den in that tasty lit­tle treat.

3. Can you really tell with­out pinch­ing any­thing, what is in the inside of that treat? You can if you have x-ray vision but not most of us do.

4. Here comes the best part. Take a bite and find out what you got.

The Choco­late Connection

Row Of Different Chocolates

The Choco­late Connection

You know, most folks are like the choco­lates you choose out of a Valen­tine box.
You just can’t tell who or what a per­son really is by just look­ing at the out­side of them.

Pay atten­tion how they look or how they really act toward you.

It really does not mat­ter if you are an older per­son, adult, or child, tall or short, heavy or thin, what color or coun­try you come from — these things that how on the out­side of us do not really share the secret of who one really is.
By remem­ber this, we have to remem­ber to take steps to really get to know
how a per­son really feels or thinks or what makes them blue or happy,
what they really enjoy or not, and what they believe by get­ting to know them
on the inside and who they are.

Each one of them is just like that spe­cial chocolate.

They are made dif­fer­ently and have had life expe­ri­ences that may make them just like us or very dif­fer­ent. It does not make them strange or bad.

It makes them unique.

Here is a lit­tle story to help you remem­ber the next time you see some­one who is dif­fer­ent from you and you begin to judge them from their outer shell.

Water Well Story Where Goodness Lives

Story Of Where
Good­ness Lives


Once upon a time, in a far-away land, three young men stopped by an old farm-house where a lit­tle boy lived. The men were thirsty. They needed some­thing to drink.

They asked the young boy,” Do you think you could let us get some cool water from your well?”

The boy thought and thought. He did not like the way that the men were dressed and was afraid they were going to harm him.
But the boy said, ” I sup­pose you can. Please just help yourself.”

Well, after the men had taken their water, they began look­ing down the deep well.

This make the lit­tle boy very nosy as he never thought about look­ing at well bot­toms.
So has ques­tioned them, “What in the world are you look­ing for or at?”

The trav­el­ing men told him, “Don’t you know?” Good­ness lives down in the well.
The boy was amazed. He had never seen any­thing, but dark­ness down there.

He asked the men, “Can you pick me up, so I can check it out for myself.“
The men boosted him over, so he could check it out for himself.The boy only saw the water below.

He only saw his own face. Dis­ap­pointed he said to them,

But that is only my face.” “That’s not good­ness, that’s only my reflec­tion.“
The three wan­der­ing men said, “Now you know where good­ness lives.
It exists inside of you.”

The weary group then explained that good­ness can be in many places at once.
 It can in the sky
— It can live on land
— It can thrive in the water

But where in the uni­verse does good­ness really make a home?

In the deep water well?
In the lap-top com­puter?
In your cell phone?
In the ipod?

Where in the uni­verse do good­ness and kind­ness live?

Well, do you know?

Boy And Girl Embracing

Good­ness And Kind­ness Lives Inside You

The answer is so sim­ple. It is inside of you.

It’s not found in any machine, or toys, cookie, treat, or piece of chocolate.

Next time you look at your­self or oth­ers about you, remem­ber to say, ” I’m look­ing at the best place where kind­ness and good­ness do live.

It is found in the heart.

Like that spe­cial box of choco­lates, take one piece of good­ness each day and make it spe­cial for you and some­one you love.

Take time to know your Valen­tine Choco­late Surprise.

Happy Valentine’s Day

Heart Power Is In You

Good­ness And Kind­ness Come From You


Are New Years Resolutions Healthy For Kids?

Lined Paper With Pen Writing Resolutions

Happy New Year And A Year Of New Hori­zons For All Of Us.

The begin­ning of a New Year in my house­hold has a cer­tain wave of activ­ity that was once known as “spring clean­ing.”  How­ever, it is not spring­time that is the new marker in the Larsen house­hold.  Start­ing out a brand new year serves as the bench­mark for goal set­ting and self-improvement.

Ven­tur­ing fresh as one begins a new year is a def­i­nite healthy way that par­ents can guide young­sters into mak­ing great changes in their life under the guise of “res­o­lu­tions.“
Although the word is an auto­matic for “the promises we broke yes­ter­day,” it could be a great spring­board for con­ver­sa­tion about mak­ing bet­ter life choices.

There are cer­tain things chil­dren can never learn in a class­room set­ting but only in the heart of the home. Some of those “home healthy life lessons are”

  • a healthy sense of self-respect
  • valu­ing their belongings
  • rever­ing other peo­ple, and their differences
  • devel­op­ing skills to make wise choices

Work­ing on one or two of these goals and reward­ing young­sters for the small­est of accom­plish­ments can encour­age a pos­i­tive attitude.

Where Can You Begin?

1. Make a list of goals that can be achiev­able in steps or incre­ments.
Baby steps even­tu­ally mature into great strides.

2. Play the goal game.  Have your child pull the goal out of a hat and
work on it for a period to time.  Doing well on one goal gives such a
sense of accom­plish­ment.  Pull another tar­get out as the first goal
is being accomplished.

3. Reward goals and accom­plish­ments. Rewards can be pow­er­ful moti­va­tors.
Be care­ful though how incen­tives are used. Remem­ber you are gift­ing the behavior-not
tar­get­ing in on “the prize.”

Tips and Tricks To Keep Your Child on Track:

  • The best rewards do not come out of a box. Your love, praise, and admi­ra­tion are the most valu­able incen­tives a child should learn to cherish.
  • Isn’t that what char­ac­ter devel­op­ment is all about? Make it a habit to give com­pli­ments, approval, and that huge hug each time your child even attempts to make a stride in reach­ing his or her goal.
  • For pre-school, it’s always fun to cre­ate a spe­cial poem, move­ment, or say­ing that empha­sizes their achieve­ment. Remem­ber though, you are con­cen­trat­ing on the behav­ior and not the reward. You don’t have to go “over­board.” This may stress your lit­tle one to try to be per­fect each and every time.
  • Good things come in small pack­ages. There are dozens of “dol­lar stores.” that carry inex­pen­sive lit­tle sur­prises for goals well met. It’s a good idea to shop as a fam­ily so those nice tiny lit­tle lagniappes are well known to the recip­i­ent. The “goodie bag” should be well in view as a gen­tle reminder that when you hit a goal – you get a prize.
  • Lit­tle gifts keep the eye on the behav­ior and not the reward. Remem­ber your expec­ta­tions are behav­ior that is accept­able. This is what a per­son of char­ac­ter and integrity should be doing in the first place.
  • I don’t encour­age food. Mixed mes­sages can come from reward­ing your child with sweets and treats.
  • Please don’t wait a week before you bestow your reward. The more space between the reward and the behav­ior, the more the dis­con­nect. The younger your lit­tle one is, the time to reward should be more imminent.

Have Fun Together

  • Have your young­ster cre­ate his or her own reward chart.
  • If your young­ster is older than pre-k, it is a fun activ­ity to gather up stars, stick­ers, or mark­ers to receive an acco­lade. Both of you should agree upon a cer­tain set of accom­plish­ments to receive a sticker (or golden mark) on the chart. Once those are suc­cess­fully accom­plished, play a game together, go to the movies, and the best reward of all – take a trip to the book­store or down­load a great eBook.

The fol­low­ing are rec­om­men­da­tions  are from the Amer­i­can Acad­emy of Pedi­atrics (AAP). They can serve as some guide­lines to get your on track.


• I will clean up my toys and put them where they belong.

• I will brush my teeth twice a day, and wash my hands after going to the bath­room and before eating.

• I won’t tease dogs or other pets – even friendly ones. I will avoid being bit­ten by keep­ing my fin­gers and face away from their mouths.

Kids: 5– to 12-years-old

• I will drink reduced-fat milk and water every day, and drink soda and fruit drinks only on spe­cial occasions.

• I will apply sun­screen before I go out­doors on bright sunny days. I will try to stay in the shade when­ever pos­si­ble and wear a hat and sun­glasses, espe­cially when I’m play­ing sports.

• I will try to find a sport (like bas­ket­ball or soc­cer) or an activ­ity (like play­ing tag, jump­ing rope, danc­ing or rid­ing my bike) that I like and do it at least three times a week!

• I will always wear a hel­met when bicycling.

• I will wear my seat belt every time I get in a car. I’ll sit in the back seat and use a booster seat until I am tall enough to use a lap/shoulder seat belt.

• I’ll be nice to other kids. I’ll be friendly to kids who need friends – like some­one who is shy, or is new to my school.

• I’ll never give out per­sonal infor­ma­tion such as my name, home address, school name or tele­phone num­ber on the Inter­net. Also, I’ll never send a pic­ture of myself to some­one I chat with on the com­puter with­out my parent’s permission.

Kids: 13-years-old and up

• I will try to eat two serv­ings of fruit and two serv­ings of veg­eta­bles every day, and I will drink sodas only on spe­cial occasions.

• I will take care of my body through phys­i­cal activ­ity and nutrition.

• I will choose non-violent tele­vi­sion shows and video games, and I will spend only one to two hours each day – at the most – on these activities.

• I will help out in my com­mu­nity – through vol­un­teer­ing, work­ing with com­mu­nity groups or by join­ing a group that helps peo­ple in need.

• When I feel angry or stressed out, I will take a break and find con­struc­tive ways to deal with the stress, such as exer­cis­ing, read­ing, writ­ing in a jour­nal or dis­cussing my prob­lem with a par­ent or friend.

• When faced with a dif­fi­cult deci­sion, I will talk about my choices with an adult whom I can trust.

• When I notice my friends are strug­gling or engag­ing in risky behav­iors, I will talk with a trusted adult and attempt to find a way that I can help them.

• I will be care­ful about whom I choose to date, and always treat the other per­son with respect and with­out coer­cion or vio­lence. I will expect the same good behav­ior in return.

• I will resist peer pres­sure to try tobacco, drugs or alcohol.

• I agree not to use a cell­phone or text mes­sage while dri­ving and to always use a seat belt.

Hope these hints and sug­ges­tions will help you as you con­sider your own per­sonal res­o­lu­tions this year as well,

Let me know what your thoughts are.  I would love to hear from you.

Words Of Love And Wisdom






How Do You Unzip A Banana? (Words Of Wisdom And Love Ages 4–8)


Big Yellow Banana

Can You See A Zipper?

Do you like to eat bananas?

Bananas are one of the world’s coolest fruits besides being a great healthy treat.
Have you ever really looked at a banana? Go to the kitchen and see if mom has one.

Just take a really good look at it.



They are yel­low, long, slim, smooth and really very handy.

Funny though, you can’t smell it or eat one with­out peel­ing it.

One of the best things about bananas is that they are tal­ented.
You just don’t have to eat them as they are.

You can:

  • bake banana bread
  • bake cook­ies
  • dip them choco­late frozen covered
  • slurp cream pies
  • and even in a big banana split 

How good can that be?

Bet­ter still, bananas are prac­ti­cal. You can carry them any­where you want.

You can eat them when you are walk­ing, play­ing, on a pic­nic.
You can do more than one thing at at time as well when you are eat­ing your banana.

Some things can be sit­ting in your favorite chair lis­ten­ing to music, read­ing a great book, watch­ing TV, or play­ing on your com­puter.  All these can be done while you are eat­ing your yel­low “buddy.”

Best of all, it’s so sim­ple to eat one. Just pull the peel off.

You can pull the cov­er­ing one at a time. You can also peel it all the way down. You can eat the banana half way and then try to peel the skin all the way down. Eat­ing a banana really is simple.

But there is a lit­tle prob­lem with bananas that you may have expe­ri­enced. Once you peel a banana it is prac­ti­cally impos­si­ble to close the peel back up again.

Peeled Banana Image

Hous­ton -
We Have A Problem


Have you ever seen a banana with but­tons or a zipper?

Maybe you have never tried to close a banana? Glu­ing and tap­ing is not a good idea. Sta­ples or paper clips are not safe and we should never even think about doing that.

That’s the big deal about eat­ing bananas. That is the one problem.


Once you break open the peel, you have to eat the fruit. The peel won’t stay back up.
Besides, bananas do not taste very good if you leave it out in the open.

Now just think about this: Life can be like peel­ing a banana.

We can make choices that once we have decided to do them,
we can­not take it back or put it in place again.
Some­times we can say unkind words to a friend, brother, or sis­ter.
We can’t take those mean words and put them back in our lips and zip them up again.

Image Of Fighting Words With Colorful Stars

Words Can Hurt

Some­times we can do self­ish or hurt­ful things to oth­ers. Once those actions are done,we may want to take it back and close them away. Like a peeled banana, it is not possible.






So what can you do make things bet­ter. I know you are not a banana.

What you are though is a good per­son. So you do not have to be “yel­low”.

Take a brave step.…..

Smiling Red Lips and Teeth

Be Brave And Take The
First Step









What can you do not to be a unzipped “banana”?

  • You can say “I am sorry.” When we make unwise choices, we can ask for forgiveness.
  • We can also do some­thing to show that per­son we really meant it by doing
    some­thing that will make them smile.

Unlike your favorite banana, you can get back to being the best and enjoy­ing this won­der­ful uni­verse again by ask­ing for for­give­ness when we make a choice that hurts others.

Unlike a banana, you can be whole again by just kind in your thoughts, words,
and actions.  Try it.

Image Of A Smiling Banana

Don’t Be Like A Banana

Words of Love And Wis­dom
Your Friend,