The Book of Daughter and Dad

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Our oldest daughter called me about a month ago and said, “Run with me. There’s a 5k Run supporting a group in town and I think we should do it. I paid the fees and we’re all set…so say yes.”

I did.

It is now race day. While we are running together (this is her very first race and the first time we have ever run together), I realize that some 19 years ago our real race together began.

It’s a race to love your kid and disciple and teach and nurture and play and think and study with them. It is a race to read all the books you can together because you know they will soon be reading on their own. It’s a race to hold their hand, listen to their jokes, praise their successes, and encourage them when they fail.

It’s a race fraught with obstacles that will test your strength and is lined with landscapes that will take your breath away.

It’s a race that you will sometimes hope is nearing an end while at the exact same time hoping it will never end. You will pray for a finish line…and pray that the finish line never comes into view.

It’s a race we run only once. It’s a race we run together. It’s a race we run to be father and daughter.

‘Win or Lose Part 3’ Thursday Stories with Baby Frederico

*Every Thursday we introduce you to another quick bedtime story about our family’s favorite resident reptile – Baby Frederico. His backstory can be found here.  Enjoy!

 BF Race 2

Baby Frederico loves his Momma Mia and Papá Frita, his buddy Grenelda the Grasshopper, blue crayons, popcorn…and superhero Lego mini figures, but he did not like to lose.  Here is part 3 of his story (for part one and two click here):

Where was he? That was all Baby Frederico could think as he stared at the scene before him. Everything seemed to be covered in a foggy mist that crept along before and behind him. He could hear two things: the sound of a car racing its engine and the sound of Grenelda playing her cello. He searched to see them, but he could only hear them through the deep darkness that was now nearly enveloping him.

Suddenly, the sound of the car came near him, too near him. It was so close in fact that he could smell the rubber burning from the tires as it raced somewhere right beside him.  To his left, the sounds of the cello suddenly became so loud and eerie that Baby Frederico could hardly think.  He began to shiver from fright.

And then the car again…and the sounds of that cello. They swirled around him until the fog and the noise and the shivering fright itself – all of it seemed to spring to life and carry him through the darkness.

He awoke with such a start that he nearly fell out of his bed. Where was he? He slowly looked around and finally and thankfully realized he was home and it was morning and it had only been a bad dream.

Baby Frederico wasted no time as he sprang to life.  He knew what he must do and raced to Grenelda’s home.  He knocked frantically at her front door, but there was no answer. He waited and listened…and that is when he heard the sweet sound of a cello, Grenelda’s cello.

Baby Frederico followed the familiar music to her backyard and there she was, his best buddy. He waited until her song was complete and walked over to where she was sitting.
Before she could say a word, Baby Frederico apologized and asked her forgiveness. She was more than happy to do it, but she asked why he had been so angry.

Baby Frederico was embarrassed but he did his best to explain why he had become so angry when he had lost the car race, “Well, I thought that I didn’t like to lose and that if I won, that would be the only way I would ever be happy…and now I know that’s not true. Friendship is more important than winning.”

Grenelda was so happy to have her friend back that all she could think to say, well, it was exactly what needed to be said – “Baby Frederico, if you have a friend in this big old world, then you have already won.”

‘Win or Lose Part 2’ Thursday Stories with Baby Frederico

*Every Thursday we introduce you to another quick bedtime story about our family’s favorite resident reptile – Baby Frederico. His backstory can be found here.  Enjoy!

 BF Race 1

Baby Frederico loves his Momma Mia and Papá Frita, his buddy Grenelda the Grasshopper, blue crayons, popcorn…and parades with marching bands full of trombone players; but he did not like to lose.  Here is part 2 of his story (for part one click here):

The moment Grenelda the Grasshopper’s purple and pink car won the race, Baby Frederico was mad.  He did not like to lose and he did not like that he lost to Grenelda and her, well his, purple and pink car.  And he told her so!

Grenelda was surprised and suggested that they try the race again because, “Surely you’ll win this time buddy.”  They raced again…and again….and even a third time – but each and every time Grenelda’s car won the race!  And Baby Frederico became angrier each time.

BF Race 2

In fact, Grenelda had never seen Baby Frederico get so upset – especially at her, his best buddy.  She was hurt, yes, but what really surprised her was how quickly all the fun they had while they were building the racetrack and talking and laughing all afternoon had so quickly and painfully come to an end.

Baby Frederico left her standing in the hallway with nothing more to say about it, so she decided it was time to leave and began the short walk home.  She felt terrible inside and even wished that she would have never won even one of those silly races at all.  She knew she had not cheated, that it was just how the car went down the racetrack that caused her to be the winner.  She knew she had done nothing wrong, but she still felt terrible.  Baby Frederico was her friend and now she missed him.

It had only been a moment when Baby Frederico, feeling embarrassed and sorry for they way he had acted, came back into the hallway to apologize to Grenelda…but she was gone.  He had no sooner realized she was gone, though, when he caught another glimpse of that purple and pink car and the long racetrack that they had built down the hallway…and he became angry all over again.  He did not like to lose.

That night, Baby Frederico slept fitfully and had a dream that turned into a nightmare.  When he would finally awake from it, everything would be different….(more next week!).

 

‘Win or Lose’ Thursday Stories with Baby Frederico

*Every Thursday we introduce you to another quick bedtime story about our family’s favorite resident reptile – Baby Frederico. His backstory can be found here.  Enjoy!

 Science Car BF

Baby Frederico loves his Momma Mia and Papá Frita, his buddy Grenelda the Grasshopper, blue crayons, popcorn, and…the way it sounded to say “Pottawatomie County”; but he did not like to lose.  Here is his story:

Five, four, three, two, one…go!  The race was finally on and Baby Frederico’s heart was beating faster than ever.  He and his best buddy Grenelda had been waiting for this Saturday race all week long and it was finally time to see who would win.

The cars had been lined up perfectly along the starting line of the bright orange tracks that Baby Frederico and Grenelda had set up along the long hallway at his house.  They loved this hallway.  It had been a bowling alley, a Nerf bow and arrow target course, an air-powered balloon/water bottle car testing facility, an art center, a paper airplane race course – and today it was the perfect spot for their long-awaited Hot Wheels race.  It included six long lanes of ramps and loops to guide their favorite cars from his toy chest at one end of the hallway straight into the winner’s circle at the other end of the hallway.  They had even found a way to use Grenelda’s old girly-looking Barbie swimming pool, which they placed just beyond the final ramp so each car would make a massive, spectacular, wonderful, wet splashdown at the end of the great race.

Baby Frederico was certain he would win.  It was his racetrack and his cars and besides, Grenelda was a girl.  She couldn’t win a race with Hot Wheels, especially with the car she had chosen – an old pink and purple van that Baby Frederico had received from his grandma (who clearly did not understand that he would never like anything that was purple or pink).  Baby Frederico had tried to throw it away, but his Momma Mia found it in the trash and had scolded him for not taking better care of his gifts.

So now here he was with his favorite Hot Wheel, his best buddy Grenelda who was using his least favorite Hot Wheel, and he was about to win a good old-fashioned race!  And then….it happened.  At the very last moment, just ahead of the final ramp that would catapult him into the winner’s circle that was Grenelda’s Barbie swimming pool…the pink and purple car jumped ahead and landed square in the middle of the splashing water of that pool and, horror of all horrors, she had won the race.

It was too terrible for Baby Frederico to comprehend.  He hated losing, especially to a girl using a purple and pink Hot Wheel, and now….he had lost.  What would he do next?  Smile and congratulate his best buddy?  Jump up and down and yell and scream and accuse her of cheating?  And what in the world would Grenelda do?  Would she be so proud of her win that she would call Baby Frederico the biggest loser ever?  Or would she just think that he was the sorest loser ever?  What do you think Baby Frederico should do (or not do!)?  Stay tuned next week, same website, same weekday, same best buddies and find out!