I used to read a lot, and I love to read because I love to learn! For some reason, I just stopped reading for a while. Last year my life was consumed by my writing, so the only books I read (other than the Bible) was about hair...(snore!). This Summer I am trying to do better. I went the our fabulous library and checked out a whole bunch of nutrition and cook books. I picked up this book entirely by accident...and I am so glad I did! The Eyres compare the characterists evident/or not evident in nine animals (for the most part) and share with us how we as parents should emmulate these characteristics in our home. I won't tell too much of the contents of the book to you because you may want to read it for yourself. For those of you who are curious; but feel you are too busy to read it, here are the contents in a nutshell along with some of my favorite parts:
Commitment - Illustrated by the Canadian Geese
I am so glad this subject was tackled first. If any book does not grab me in the first chapter, I usually never finish it. The stories about the geese and how they mate for life (50+ years) and how they always put family first REALLY got my attention.
Praise, support, and positive affirmation - Illustrated by Crabs
If you ever want to catch crabs, just put more than one in a box together. The one will pull another down if one ever gets ahead. Lesson: learn to boost one another up instead of pulling one another down.
Responsibility - Illustrated by the Bear
Lesson: There are no quick fixes. Accept family responsibility and make it a joy.
Awareness - Illustrated by the Frog
If you ever want some good frog legs; put the whole frog in a pot of lukewarm water and adjust the fire gradually. He will become confortable as the water gets warmer and he won't even try to get out! Lesson: sin and danger sometimes enter our lives so gradually that we don't even notice it. Learn to be aware and take notes of little things...little attitudes, "small" sins, and such and take care of it while it's small.
Communication - Illustrated by the Humpback Whale
No two whales speak at the same time. They each (members of a pod - family) patiently wait until one whale is done "singing" before they start their song.
Discipline (tough love) - Illustrated by the Elephant
The muscles in a mother elephant's trunk are strong enough to move a tree trunk out of the way of her baby; but gentle enough to hug and caress her baby as well. Challenge: write a list that defines the kind of mother you would like to be and strive for it. (Be realistic!!!)
Consistency - Illustrated by the Tortoise
We all know the fable about the tortoise and the hare; the Eyres have an interesting take on why the tourtoise won. Lesson: Remember your goal and patiently strive for it.
Security and identity - Illustrated by the Redwood trees
They stand so strongly because their roots are entertwined. Lesson: Family traditions are important.
Freedom and empowerment - Illustrated by Fleas
Ever watch a flea circus? Look it up sometime. Lessson: True freedom involves protection and potential and doing the hard things that lead to both.
Hope this was a blessing to you,