‘Speak Up!’ 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 speech 1

Baby Frederico loves his Momma Mia and Papá Frita, his buddy Grenelda the Grasshopper, blue crayons, popcorn, and…birthday parties; but he did not like to speak in front of an audience – here is his story:

Baby Frederico was mesmerized by the story that was unfolding before him.  It was third hour Science and the teacher had spent the week describe an amazing list of the world’s most unusual animals.  Today’s example was the Box Jellyfish, which actively seeks out and hunts prey with its 24 eyes and deadly venom.


But the reason he was so interested in finding out about such a crazy animal was not that he particularly loved science or unusual animals.  No, he was interested because it reminded him of the speech he was going to give this week in front of what was expected to be a very big crowd of grown-ups.  The Box Jellyfish seemed like the perfect symbol of that crowd, who he expected to be “actively seeking him out and hunting him down with its 24 eyes and deadly venom” while he spoke.

Why had he said yes to giving a speech?  Why oh why oh why?  It was a speech about not being a bully, something he felt very strongly about and enjoyed speaking his mind on at recess with his friends and at home with his family…but here at school with grown-ups?!  It all made him terribly nervous and it hurt his stomach and it refused to let him sleep at night or play during the day or even read his favorite superhero comic books. He wanted to do it; and he didn’t want to do it.  It would be his chance to talk about something he knew would make a difference, but it was also the scariest thing he had ever done in his short life so far here on earth!

The day at school dragged by as Baby Frederico became more and more nervous about the afternoon’s event.

Finally, it was time to make the long walk to the school’s auditorium, where all those box jellyfish-like people were surely waiting for him.  However, as he opened the door and peered inside the large room, he noticed that nearly all of the people there were familiar to him.  They didn’t seem all that scary and none of them came close to resembling a venomous jellyfish.

After his speech, Baby Frederico listened as the room erupted in applause and smiles.  He was especially thankful that he had said yes to giving the speech, but he was truly surprised when he and his family opened the door to their car to go home.  There in the seat was a special snack that his mother had carefully and colorfully wrapped for him – his favorite – a grape JELLY sandwich!  He could only laugh as he thought of how grateful he was that as he ate, not one tentacle of venom was anywhere to be found.

Let’s End Bullying


Our 13-year old was asked to give a speech for an anti-bullying campaign called Rachel’s Challenge here before our community last night.  It is an important topic and deserves the full attention of this blog space today.  She wrote every word of it on her own and we are proud that she has chosen to take this stand with so many others across the country:

“Think about the first time you were bullied. Now, think about the first time someone was genuinely kind to you. These two events are crucial in everyone`s lives, as they are the events that almost completely determine how you act in situations the rest of your life. Did you walk away from that bully? Were you a bully back? Or did you show him or her kindness?

In a September 30, 2013 column in The New York Times, it was reported that, among 12- to 17-year-olds, 47 percent of girls and 34 percent of boys report having been bullied either face-to-face or online.

I am in the 8th grade and I was invited to be a part of the Rachel`s Challenge (RC) group last year by one of my favorite teachers, Mrs. Amy Adam. She really embodies the principals that RC teaches and sets. And Mrs. Adam did not only get me involved with RC, but she showed me how you can be kind to people that are not necessarily so kind to you.

The class that I was in was especially ornery and I was always so amazed at how Mrs. Adam would not lose her cool.  She would not yell.  She would just smile and say, “Quiet down boys,” and keep right on teaching. So when Mrs. Adam invited me to be a leader for RC, I was honored because the those marvelous, kind, caring qualities that I saw in her – she actually saw in me too!

My teachers asked me to tell you how I think Rachel`s Challenge will change our schools. Well, I believe that every single person on this earth has the ability to possess those caring, and genuine qualities, they just need a little encouragement to show them outwardly.

And that is really what RC is all about. It is a kid-run organization that is here to simply show kindness to everyone no matter the circumstance and encourage those people to pass the kindness along. And think, if every one person is kind to every person they see, then that chain reaction that Rachel talked about will go into effect, and the kindness will spread and grow and eventually, the whole world will be a member of Rachel`s Challenge whether they know it or not.

In closing, I would like to leave you with this thought from author F. Scott Fitzgerald, ‘It was only a sunny smile, and little it cost in the giving, but like morning light, it scattered the night, and made the day worth living!’

Thank you all for allowing me to share these thoughts with you that have really been on my heart lately. Good night.”


Here is a Baby Frederico story about bullying and a book review from “Bully” at our site:

1.  http://fatherknowsbooks.com/?p=912

2.  http://fatherknowsbooks.com/?p=851