Monday, 30 December 2013

Happy New Year

Happy New Year,



A great 2014 for you, may your dreams come true, that you fly to the cloud you haven't flown yet!


The Little Girl and Papi will come in 2014 full of new adventures.

Until then, you have a great entrance in this fantastic year that is coming our way! Go out and see the fireworks with your family, take a lot of pictures and make great memories.

Qwirkle

Father Christmas visited the Little Girl. He left some presents for the Little Girl under the tree. On the Christmas morning the Little Girl was excited to open all the presents. But the Little Girl had a small problem, she could not read and did not know for whom each different present was. So she started the guessing game.
- Papi, is this for me ?
- Yes Little Girl, that is for you.
- Papi, is this for me ?
- No Little Girl, that is for Mami.
- MAMI! MAMI! Nicholas left a present for you... come Mami.
And so the line of presents went all the way until the last.
- Papi, is this for me ?
- How interesting Little Girl, that is for the family, it is for the Little Girl, for Mami and for Papi.
- Wow, that is cool!
So the Little Girl unwrapped the special family gift.
It was a game with a lot of colors!
- What is this game Papi ? I want to play!
- This game is called Qwirkle.
- Qwirkle? I want to play, I want to play.
So Papi started reading the rules as the Little Girl Started unpacking all the little pieces.
The Little Girl was excited. Papi was finding the rules to complicated, he looked at the box and checked the age: from 6 years old. Hum, Papi had a problem, the Little Girl was only 4 years old.
But Papi had an idea, and told the Little Girl to go hide every little piece somewhere in the house. So the Family started the game, hiding the little black squares with the symbols on them.
When all the pieces were hidden, the family met around the small table at the Little Girl's room.
Papi then explained step number 2.
Papi was going to put some small song playing. When the song finishes, each player sits in the chair closer to him or her. Luckily, the Little Girl had 4 small chairs in her room. She had a chair of each color. She had a red, blue, yellow and green chair.
So Papi put the music playing. Then suddenly the music stopped and everybody sat on a chair.
The Little Girl was on a blue chair, Papi found a yellow chair, and Mami sat on the green chair.
Now Papi explained step 3. Each player need to find a piece that was hidden of the same color as the chair. Everybody ran to find a piece of that color.
Each time the family got back together near the table, the music would start again and stop.
In the end of the day, who had the more pieces won the game.
The family lost some pieces of the game that would be found for many years to come in the house. But everybody had a lot of fun playing the new version of the game.

Sunday, 29 December 2013

Balloons

Ever been in the supermarket and your kids seem to want everything they see ? Do they want expensive stuff ? Do they simply want because you always give them something in the past ? Do they have a favorite thing they always want to bring from the supermarket ? Like cookies, chocolates or balloons ? How do you act with them ? How do you know them to get them the stuff they want or not too ? How do you tell them to not bring those useless extras? Tell me your story, here is mine...

The Little Girl loved balloons. She loved balloons in all colors and shapes. As Papi pushed the shopping cart at the supermarket, the Little Girl placed little packs of balloons in the shopping cart.
Papi got the milk, the Little Girl got a small pack of white balloons and hid them behind the milk.
Papi got strawberries, the Little Girl got a small pack of red balloons and hid them behind the strawberries.
Papi got bananas, the Little Girl got a small pack of yellow balloons and hid them behind the bananas.
Papi got the lettuce, the Little Girl got a small pack of green balloons and hid them behind the lettuce.
The Little Girl also wanted blue balloons, but Papi was not putting anything blue in the shopping cart.
"Papi!" called the Little Girl pointing out, "You want the blue shovel", "No Little Girl, Papi does not need that."
"Papi!" called the Little Girl pointing out, "You want the blue jug", "No Little Girl, Papi does not need that."
"Papi!" called the Little Girl pointing out, "You want the blue basket", "No Little Girl, Papi does not need that."
The Little Girl was getting more and more excited, Papi was not buying anything blue, and she really wanted the blue balloons.
"Papi, Papi, I want the blue shampoo, I want to be pretty for Papi!", and Papi took the shampoo out of the shelf and to the shopping cart. The Little girl got a small pack of blue balloons and hid behind the shampoo.
The Little Girl and Papi went to pay for the groceries, and Papi was surprised with all the balloons. Papi looked at the Little Girl, and the Little Girl smiled back at Papi tilting her head with her hands and one foot behind her. Papi could not help but give a big laugh.
The lady at the cash register liked the Little Girl and asked her "Are you having a party today Little Girl ? So many beautiful balloons, here take this gift, it is a balloon pump."
Papi and the Little Girl went to the car, the Little Girl started pumping her balloons in the car. She was happy, now the car would fly home much faster. The Little Girl did not understand why Papi was complaining about the mirror. She did not want to look pretty now, she just wanted to fly home.

Resolution 2014

Today we have a different entry, today I am not writing you a story.

Today I am writing you something very personal, today I am writing one of my resolutions for 2014.
And from the results of my blog from 2013, I fully believe that I can achieve my goal. I received a little help from a friend and her blog "Marketing research without the jargon" by Ana Canhoto.

I have today a written physical draft of a book of what my final book can look like.

I just received in the mail via FedEx the first printed versions of the book. It came to life using the services of Blurb Books. It is far from being the book I want, but it is physical evidence that I can do it. And seeing it in hardcover format, allows to better understand what it can look like, and what it needs to be closer to what i want the book to become. A huge thanks to Angela Gaehtgens, my executive coach, that teaches me visualizing the success is part of achieving it. Today with this physical evidence, the exercise just became much more easier.

By writing my short stories and ideas in this blog, I am little by little compiling enough material to provide the content needed for the book.

The tip of writing, just writing, and especially doing it in a blog, I got in a book that I searched to coach me into writing it. This book "Write a Book in a Weekend" by Donna Kozik provided a lot on insight into getting your work on to the ground. But speaking of references, a real life changer was the book "Your Writing Coach" by Jurgen Wolff that puts everything you need to write a book into perspective with huge amount of information to make your book solid with content.

All my content are stories, short stories. And I found a great place to test this stories and get feedback on them. I strongly recommend you visit a Toastmasters Organization club. You will be surprised, there are clubs everywhere, probably extremely close to you and you have never noticed. Find one near you and ask for participating in a session. It was for me a fantastic place for telling my stories and get feedback on how I can make them better and how I can deliver them with more impact. A huge thank for my friend Filipa Valente that took me into one of this sessions for the first time at Young Entrepreneurs Toastmaster Club. A huge thanks to a lot of toastmasters that gave me a lot of feedback and enriched my life. I would like to say here the name of all of them, but where so many that it is difficult for me to not forget some.

In the beginning I was pictures of the events for the stories, thanks to the feedback of my dear friend Alex Frank, I use now my own drawings for enriching the message. After all it is easier to convey imagination in a drawing that it is in a picture. I will revisit my few blog posts done so far with pictures and little by little replace them with drawings.

So if I was able to produce a pretty decent book so far, I imagine that collecting a richer material will allow the content to become much more interesting and mold-able by the editor. So during 2014 I will definitively put a lot more investment into writing my short stories and keep them flowing. I believe by doing so I will have enough material for bringing the book to life in 2015. Nevertheless I will do a new print run by end of 2014 and hope to make it very close to a definitive book.

I just need one more thing for the success, I would like you as a reader to provide me feedback on what i have written so far. After all, despite the book being the result of my creativity, I do like to know that what I create links somehow to the readers. The book is for their joy as much as it is for mine.

You all have a fantastic 2014, and put in your resolutions to provide me feedback.
Happy New Year.

Alex.

Saturday, 28 December 2013

Cow in Boots

How do you teach the colors to your kids ? And to count ? Do they enjoy showing they know the colors ? And counting ? You teach them to count ? And the animals of the farm ? Have you taken them to see a farm `Do they know what a cow, pig or goat looks like ? Do they enjoy seeing the farm animals ? Do they like to feed them ? Are they afraid of the animals ? Tell me your story, here is mine...

The Little Girl went to the farm. The Little Girl wanted to see the cow.
The Little Girl had a present for the cow, the Little Girl had a big orange carrot to give to the cow.
Did the cow like carrots ?
Where was the big cow ?
The Little Girl went to the farm. The Little Girl wanted to see the cow.
- Hello brown dog, did you see the cow ?
- Woof woof, said the brow dog.
The Little Girl went to the farm. The Little Girl wanted to see the cow.
- Hello pink pig, did you see the cow ?
- Oink oink, said the pink pig.
The Little Girl went to the farm. The Little Girl wanted to see the cow.
- Hello white sheep, did you see the cow ?
- Meeeh meeeh, said the white sheep.
The Little Girl went to the farm. The Little Girl wanted to see the cow.
Is the cow at the lake ?
No at the lake only ducks.
The Little Girl went to the farm. The Little Girl wanted to see the cow.
Is the cow at the pen ?
No at the pen only chickens.
The Little Girl went went to the farm . The Little Girl wanted to see the cow.
Is the cow at the stable ?
Yes, the cow is at the stable.
The Little Girl went went to the farm . The Little Girl wanted to see the cow.
The Little Girl found the cow.
The cow was wearing boots.
The Little Girl went went to the farm . The Little Girl wanted to see the cow.
The boots had different colors.
One boot was Yellow, the cow was wearing a yellow boot.
One boot was Red, the cow was wearing a red boot.
One boot was Green, the cow was wearing a green boot.
One boot was Blue, the cow was wearing a blue boot.
The Little Girl went went to the farm . The Little Girl wanted to see the cow.
And the Little Girl learned the colors.
Yellow, Red, Green and Blue.
The Little Girl went went to the farm . The Little Girl wanted to see the cow.
How many boots was the cow wearing ?
The cow was wearing 4 boots, one boot for each leg.
1 - One, 2 - Two, 3 - Three, 4 - Four.
The Little Girl went went to the farm . The Little Girl wanted to see the cow.
And the Little Girl learned the numbers.
1 - One, 2 - Two, 3 - Three, 4 - Four.
The Little Girl went went to the farm . The Little Girl wanted to see the cow.
The Little Girl found the cow.
The Little girl gave a orange carrot to the cow.
The Little Girl went went to the farm . The Little Girl wanted to see the cow.
She saw the cow and now was sleeping the way home.

Thursday, 26 December 2013

Don't Shake Hook

Do you play board games with your kids ? Do you compete to win them or you let them win ? Is winning important ? Do you play until the end ? How fun is it to play ? Do they invent rules in the middle of the game ? You play with their silly rules or try to keep to the "official" rules ? Tell me your story, here is mine...

The Little Girl saw Jake grab a big gem right from under Captain's Hook pillow. Jake had nimble fingers and he managed to take out the gem without waking up Captain Hook. Captain Hook was sleeping in his hammock. It gave the feeling that the hammock would shake Captain Hook and make him wake up, but Jake's nimble fingers did the trick.
The Little Girl was excited, it was her turn to try and take a small chest from the top of the hammock. The exact same hammock Captain Hook was sleeping in. The Little Girl used Jake's sword to try and take the small chest. The Little Girl stretched her arm as long as she could with the sword tip almost reaching the small chest. The Little Girl approached a little more and could see the tip of the sword get into the small chest's hold.
The Little Girl was getting very nervous, she lift the sword slowly but the sword was not in a position to lift the small chest. the Little Girl placed the tip of the sword through the small chest's hold once more. The Little Girl stretched a little more her small arm and saw the tip get deeper through the small chest hold. Very calmly, very slowly the Little Girl lift the sword once more, and the tip of the sword was lifting the hold of the small chest. A little bit more of strength was needed to lift the small chest. The Little Girl made a big effort and lifted with strength the tip of the sword and the sword made an arc.
The Little Girl got nervous and reduced the strength.
"I Can't make it", cried the Little Girl.
All the friends encouraged her, Jake showed her a big big confident smile.
The Little Girl tried once more to lift the tip of the sword.
Gently, gently, the Little Girl stressed the sword and suddenly the sword straightened from it's arc and down came the small chest sliding by the hold down the sword.
"I made it, I made it!" shouted the Little Girl.
Captain Hook woke up, not because he got shook up on the hammock, but because the Little Girl woke him up with the victory shouts.
The party ended soon as Jake, the Little Girl and all the other boys from Neverland ran away from a furious Captain Hook.
Story based on Disney's game: "Who Shook Hook?"

Wednesday, 25 December 2013

The White Butterfly

Do your kids ask for bedtime stories ? Do you read them ? Do you search for books to have that night ritual ? Do you improvise ? Do you ask them for the first sentence and then you continue ? Do they interrupt you ? Do you continue the story after they fall asleep ? Tell me your story, here is mine...

The great oak tree stood majestic in the garden. Covering the ground around the oak tree we could see many golden, yellow and red leaves. The tree was big, leaves were everywhere except for really far away from the tree. The great oak tree looked old and sad, it had no leaves, except for one small white leaf.
The Little Girl looked at the great oak tree.
"Are you sad big tree ?", asked the Little Girl, but the great oak tree did not answer back.
"Are you cold big tree ?", asked the Little Girl, and once more the great oak tree did no answer back.
"Do you want to play with me ?", asked the Little Girl, and once more the great oak remained silent.
The Little Girl did not wait for any answer from the tree, and she ran to the great oak tree. She ran around the great oak tree singing happily.
A great oak tree lived in the garden,
A little girl it could see was the warden,
And when all the leaves were absent
The great oak tree stood alone and silent.
It was then that the Little Girl saw the single white leaf on the great oak tree. She looked at the white leaf and wondered how it got there. Could it be a winter leaf ?
The Little Girl looked for something to help her get up the great oak tree. She found a ladder nearby and brought the ladder close to the big oak tree. First the right foot on the ladder, it looked like the ladder was secure and safe, then left foot on the ladder and the little girl climbed up. She moved to the big branches, and chose the branch closest with the white leaf. The Little Girl crawled on the branch and approached the small white leaf.
When the Little Girl was real close to the white leaf, the small white leaf opened into to sparkling white leaves. It was a small white butterfly that start flying when the Little Girl approached. The Little Girl looked surprised at the beautiful sparkling white butterfly as it flew around the big oak tree. The white butterfly looked like a snowflake that was happily flying the great oak tree.
The Little Girl fell of the big oak tree, luckily she landed on a big pile of golden, yellow and red leaves. The pile of leaves softened the Little Girl's fall. The Little Girl let herself stay on top of the pile of leaves and looked at the small sparkling white butterfly as it flew around the big oak tree.
The Little Girl flapped her arms as if she was flying, and the cleared the leaves around her showing the green grass. She left two green wings around her as the leaves cleared with the arm movement. The Little Girl had now two beautiful green wings and could fly with the butterfly. The small white butterfly was happily flying around the great oak tree. The Little Girl was happily flying behind the small white butterfly.
The small white butterfly flew once, twice, three times around the great oak tree, and then flew towards the church tower. The Little Girl flew after the small white butterfly. When they arrived at the church clock tower it started to ring and tell time. It was 12 o'clock, and the bell rang 12 times. With each hour a small group of white butterflies flew away from the church tower. When the 12 times had rang, there was a great number of small white butterflies flying around.
All the butterflies surrounded the Little Girl, and the Little Girl went back to the great oak tree. The Little Girl sat on the garden and looked at all the small white butterflies flying around the great oak tree. It looked like it was snowing, and the snow was alive around the great oak tree.
The great oak tree now looked very happy with all the small white butterflies flying around. Some butterflies sat on the great oak tree branches and looked like a thousand of beautiful white leaves. Other butterflies continued to fly and looked like it was snowing. the great oak tree was now covered in white foliage.
A great oak tree lived in the garden,
A little girl it could see was the warden,
And with all the butterflies flying around,
The happy oak tree was a playground.
The Little Girl sang happily her rhyme and went back home. Papi had said to the Little Girl that Christmas this year was not going to be a white Christmas. But Papi was wrong, Christmas this year was a white Christmas after all.

Tuesday, 24 December 2013

Santa's Helper

Does you kid love Christmas ? Does he want to help Santa Claus ? Does he believe in Santa Claus ? Do you feed that dream ? What do you role-play in this fantasy come true ?

It was the day before Christmas. The Little Girl looked out of the window very excited and saw the field covered in white. What a beautiful morning, the sun was about to shine very intensive, so it was going to be a nice day to go out and play.
The Little Girl had been waiting for snow all these days since she started hearing the Christmas Carols everywhere. She was finally going to slide throw the snow with her beautiful sledge. The Little Girl even got two little golden balls and a branch of the Christmas tree at home to decorate her sledge. The Little Girl's sledge was going to be the most beautiful sledge sliding downhill.
The Little Girl went out on her sledge, she wanted to test the snow. But when she got out of the house, it was not snow, it was just simple ice everywhere. The Little Girl could not go downhill in her sledge. What could she do today ?
The Little Girl got an idea,she would fly like Santa in her sledge. But the Little girl needed the help to pull the sledge up in the sky, so she went to talk with her special magical friends. The Little Girl ran back home and went to the special kingdom where she knew she would find her magical friends.
On the way she met Bolt the Plush Dog! "Hello Bolt", said the Little Girl, I need you to help me pull the sledge into the sky, "are you strong enough ?", "YES!" shouted Bolt the plush dog. And together they went to find another friend to pull the sledge.
On the way, The Little Girl and Bolt met Wolfie the Plush Wolf! "Hello Wolfie!", said the Little Girl, I need you to help me pull the sledge into the sky, "are you strong enough ?", "YES!" shouted Wolfie the plush wolf. And together they went to find another friend to pull the sledge.
On the way, the Little Girl, Bolt and Wolfie met many other strong friends wishing to help. They met, Scamp the plush dog. They met Berni the FC Bayern mascot. They met Gelbie, the Plush Fox. They met also Katzi, and Leo.
The Little Girl had now seven strong friends to help pull the sledge into the sky. The Little girl organized the brave and strong friends by size, the smallest in the front and the bigger in the back. They were organized in two orderly rows. The Little Girl found some magical string and tied all the strong friends together and onto the sledge.
The sledge was beautiful, decorated with the Christmas tree branch and the golden balls, and pulled by the seven brave and strong friends. The sledge was being pulled by Bolt, Wolfie, Scamp, Berni, Geldie, Katzi and Leo.
The Little Girl just needed one more to bring the magic to her sledge. She went to the Christmas tree and fetched all the presents. the Little Girl knew that if she gave presents to other people she would bring the magic to Christmas. Christmas was all about giving and making other people smile.
And with her own smile, the Little Girl had her magical sledge being pulled to the sky. The Little Girl and her seven brave and strong friends were helping Santa this year. This was going to be the best Christmas ever.

Saturday, 30 November 2013

The Helicopter

Papi is coming back, Papi is coming back, Papi is coming back.
Mami, let's go fetch Papi at the airplane.
Mami smiled in agreement to the Little Girl.
Can we go in the helicopter Mami ?
No Little Girl, we are going by train.
No, No, I want to go in the helicopter that Papi gave me the last time he went on a plane.
What helicopter ? Asked puzzled Mami.
The Little Girl ran to her room, and picked up the helicopter.
Mami, the helicopter, can we go in the helicopter ?
OK Little Girl, let's go then, let's get ready.
The helicopter started spinning, a whoosh of air suddenly came has the rotor came to life.
The "Prrr prrr prrr" of the rotor could be hear, and along with the sound little pieces of spit as the Little Girl looked enthusiastically at the helicopter.
It was a tough job for Mami to dress the Little Girl with all the wind coming from the rotor blades. But the Little Girl put on her red dress, socks and the beautiful red boots shed selected last time Papi took her to the boring boot library.
The Little Girl and Mami hopped on to the Helicopter has the rotor blades started to spin faster.
There goes the helicopter with the Little Girl and Mami down the staircase and to the street.
What a nice trip to see the road to the train from high above the helicopter. All the houses very small, and down bellow they could see the train station. The Little Girl waited for the train to arrive at the station, then with great skill the Little Girl went flying above the train to the airport.
Once reaching the airport, the Little Girl was excited, she was piloting the helicopter high above the train, and she could see all the big planes landing around her.
Papi is on that airplane Mami ?
No Little Girl, answered Mami.
Is Papi on that red plane ?
No Little Girl.
Is Papi on that blue plane ?
No Little Girl.
...
After 99 airplanes the Little Girl saw Papi.
Excited she flew with the helicopter to Papi.
Come Papi, com with the helicopter, we are going home.

Sunday, 17 November 2013

The Nightmares

The Little Girl did not want to go to bed. She was afraid of closing her eyes. She had bad dreams and she did not want for the bad dreams to come to her in the night while she was alone in bed.
"No Papi, I don't wan't to go to bed", cried the Little Girl.
"Mr. Sandman is putting sand on your eyelids, soon you will want to sleep."
"No Papi! I don't want to sleep", continued crying the Little Girl.
"Why don't you want to sleep ? Sleep makes you stronger and tomorrow you will be full of energy to play."
"No Papi! When I close my eyes I can see the monsters in the night, there are a lot of ugly animals waiting for me to sleep", cried the Little Girl.
"Ha, you are afraid of the monsters and ugly animals....", said Papi.
"Yes Papi! I am afraid of the monsters and ugly animals that come in the night when I am sleeping."
"Then we need to find you the fox with the light sword, that will protect you during the night."
"Where is the fox with the light sword Papi?", asked the Little Girl with the heart renovated with hope.
"Today the Fox with the light sword is protecting your friend Bella," explained Papi, "but tomorrow Bella does not need the fox, I will ask the fox with the light sword to come and protect you Little Girl."
The Little Girl seemed happier, and was in hope for Papi to bring the fox protector of her dreams.
But the Little Girl fought the sleepiness until she could fight no more.
Soon the Little Girl fell asleep, and Papi gently took the Little Girl to her bed, pulled the blanket and tucked her in. The Little Girl was sleeping peaceful, she slept with a big smile and Papi stayed for a bit looking at her.
Papi went back to the computer in the office.
Next day the Little Girl woke up, she came straight to Papi.
"Papi, is the fox here ?", at that same moment the doorbell rang, Papi wen't to the door ant talked with somebody in a yellow and red suit. When Papi came back he had a big box.
"What is that?", asked the Little Girl.
"I do not know, let's open the box".
And the Little Girl opened the box with excitement....
In the box there was a gold shiny fox, with very soft fur, and with a huge smile.
"Papi, Papi, ", shouted the Little Girl excitedly, "it's the fox that came to protect me from bad dreams".
The Little Girl played all day with the fox, she presented the fox to all the other toys and plush animals. It was a new and excited day at home.
When night came the Little Girl turned to Papi:
"Papi, I am going to bed with foxy, night night Papi", and the Little Girl went happily to bed.
Papi was happy, the Little Girl fell asleep very fast, she now had a new protector from her bad dreams.

Saturday, 9 November 2013

The Yellow Balloon

- Papi!
Happiness. I always get a rush of pure happiness when this simple word is followed by this little being with the big bright eyes.
- Mommy?
- Mommy could not come today.
- Why?
- Mommy had to go to the doctor.
- Why?
- Mommy is ill.
- Why?
- Come, let's change your shoes, we are going home now.
I always wonder when should I stop the why train. The Little Girl always manages to get to places I don't know how to answer.
- Papi?
- Yes?
- Can I go in the yellow balloon?
- Of course!
- Yeah! I am going in the yellow balloon. I am going in the yellow balloon.
Another rush. I have truly been blessed everyday for the last 4 years. I let myself watch the Little Girl as she jumped around, and has she jumped around she wanted to make sure every kid knew that she was going home in the yellow balloon.
We pulled the yellow balloon from the locker, it was still full of air, floating against the locker's ceiling. It was there as if by magic knowing of this one more mission, to take the Little Girl home safely.
I dressed her up with the pink water suit and the green gummy boots. It's raining outside and we will not be able to go to the playground. I didn't have a backup plan, would have to rely on my improvisation for the long hours Mommy would be undergoing the  exams.
On the way out, the Little Girl passed by her friend Bella. They talked very happily in their very unique magical language to which grownups are not invited. I did get the words yellow and balloon, I saw the Little Girl's excitement, and I got a feeling for Bella wanting to come with the Little Girl.
Rain. Still hasn't stopped raining for the last 2 weeks, sunshine would surely be welcomed by us. As we got out I could hear the sound of a little trampoline, almost as high as a musical high pitched drum. It was the sound of raindrops on the yellow balloon. The yellow balloon was the Little Girl’s umbrella.
The yellow balloon looked like a small private sun very bright, making an high contrast with the pink water suit. The yellow balloon was glowing privately for the Little Girl as if responding to her smile. The Little Girl’s smile became wider and the balloon intensified it’s glow.
The yellow balloon seemed to be growing, getting bigger and bigger, the raindrops getting louder and louder drumming on the yellow balloon. Suddenly the yellow balloon was covering the sky above me, and the Little GIrl was holding to the yellow balloon.
The yellow balloon was moving upwards, and the Little Girl as well. I held on to the Little Girl's legs as the yellow balloon pulled the Little Girl into the sky. I got nervous, afraid of the yellow balloon taking my Little Girl. But the Little Girl felt my fear and smiled back at me.
- Papi! We are flying, we are flying.
Somehow, knowing this bigger than life experience seemed usual to the Little GIrl, I relaxed a bit. The Little Girl was feeling my restlessness.
- Papi! We are going home in the yellow balloon.
- We sure are Little Girl. Put your legs tightly around my shoulders.
The Little GIrl was holding tight, I surely felt the Little Girl happy to be going home in the yellow balloon with her father.
- Papi, I don’t want to go to Neverland and the pirates. I want to go with Peter Pan when I am like this.
She showed me her stretched hands with the ten fingers up. Who is holding the balloon ? The Fox in purple superhero costume was holding the balloon in one hand and the Little Girl on the other. Good thing we discovered the Fox, it used to protect the Little Girl from bad dreams and from the darkness. Always good to have it around.
We passed the green gardens on the way home. Our neighbors looking at us and waving, they always exchanged accomplice smiles with the Little GIrl. She knew all of them.
- Hello Little Girl! What a beautiful yellow balloon you have there.
The Little Girl would just smile, giggle and look back.
- Hello Little GIrl! Papa came to pick you up today.
And the Little Girl would smile, laugh and wave back. She stretched her arms, mimicking a pink plane. Looked like the Fox was riding the plane and holding the yellow balloon. The Fox smiled back at me, I could read in it's eyes that it would always be there to protect the Little GIrl.
We saw the cars passing on the street, the other kids with their parents looking from the windows at the Little GIrl. I believe they all wanted to be in the Little GIrl’s place. The Little GIrl was flying home in the yellow balloon.
Bella waved her little arm from the window of the small blue car.
- Little Girl! You are flying in the yellow balloon!
The Little Girl stretched her arms in the direction of Bella, and showed the full ten finger from both hands.
- Yes, I am flying, and when I am like this, I am going to fly with Peter Pan to Neverland and the Pirates.
- Bye bye Little Girl!
We saw Bella move away waving her little arm from the window of the small blue car. The small blue car became smaller as it moved away from us.
We could see the clouds above us, the clouds looked familiar. I could see Rapid the rabbit. I could see Hearty the lion. I could see Uli the owl. I could see Mickey Mouse. And the Little Girl knew all the clouds. She waved at the clouds telling me excited the names of all of them as we flew by.
We passed by the retirement home. The woman with fluffy white hair and round cheeks looked and smiled at the Little Girl. The woman with the silver hair and long nose looked at the Little Girl in disapproval. The lady in blue with the big round glasses clapped her hands as we passed by.
- Papi! Fast, Papi, fast Papi!
The Little Girl didn't want to be too long there. She saw the old bald man in black holding the big stick. He’s nose was reminded us of an eagle. His eyes were red and we could see the lasers coming out. If the lasers pierced the balloon we would be in danger. I moved frantically my legs as if I was swimming away from of the crocodile, and we moved as fast as we could increasing our distance from the old bald man in black.
We could see the stone fountain in front of the house. We were getting closer to safety. But the Little Girl didn't want to go into the house yet. She wanted to talk with all the stones in the fountain. So she approached the stones. It had stopped raining. The sky was clear now, the clouds had changed color from grey to white.
I looked at her, as she gently placed her green gummy books on top of the first stone. She was holding the yellow balloon tight in her hand. She touched the stone with the other hand, and the black stone turned white. She jumped from one stone to the next circling the fountain of the big stones. With each step of the green gummy boots the stones turned to white.
As she jumped around the big stones fountain, the stones made all the fountain look like a circular piano, with the stones in place of the keys in the huge piano keyboard. In my mind I could listen to the tune. She was playing happy birthday as she jumped from stone to stone, as she pressed each big key.

Saturday, 26 October 2013

The Volcano

I always feel like my children are adventuring when we go to a theme park. Do you take your children to theme parks ? Do they get a feeling of exploring a new world ? Does it feel like an adventure always bringing new surprises ? Do your kids feel like it'S real life for them ? Do you role-play the adventure with them ? Do you make them play their part in the adventure ? Do you tell stories the next days enhancing the experience of the memories created ? Tell me your story, here is mine...

The Little Girl entered the dense forest. The forest was dense and as she walked through she had to get the giant palm leaves of her way. She couldn't see except for the next giant leaf in front of her. She remembered stories of people who used the giant leafs as plates to eat food. It was said the food was tastier when you ate the vegetables off the giant leafs with your own hands. Fried bananas on the leaves with rice was the favorite food of the Little Girl's friend.
She wondered what fruits she could see on the plants, she believed she saw bananas, mangoes and coconuts. And she liked all those fruits.
Another giant leaf in front of the Little Girl. The leaves were so big that it was hard for the Little Girl to push the leaves so she could pass. A monkey came by the Little Girl, he was standing in a branch just above the banana tree leaves. The monkey looked curious at the Little Girl, and the Little Girl looked back curious at the monkey.
The monkey gave a big shout and the Little Girl stopped. When the Little Girl looked down in front of her, she could see a river, and she was on a ledge. The monkey saved the little girl from falling. The Little Girl gave the monkey a big smile. The monkey came down from the branch and gave a piece of mango to the Little Girl. That piece of mango was so sweet, the Little Girl delighted herself with the sweet mango.
She started climbing down the ledge towards the river, and the monkey led her way down through a safe passage. The Little Girl climbed down the ledge excited, she could see other kids crossing the river in wooden rafts. She wanted to cross the river in a raft.
As she approached the river, there was a dock with an old man with a big beard. The old man looked like Nicholas, but was not dressed in the red suit the Little Girl found very funny. But it was not snowing, the red suit would be to hot now.
The old man said: "Hello Little Girl, do you have something for me ?". The Little Girl remembered the coin Papi gave her. She fetched the silver shiny coin from her pocket and gave it to the old man. the old man pulled a wooden raft and helped the Little Girl get on top. He then pushed the raft to the river with a long staff. The Little Girl was excited has she crossed the river. The monkey sat on the raft, sticking it's fingers in the water as to test the temperature. She reached the other side of the river and continued her journey. The monkey followed her.
The trail was full of dangers, first a big pit, the Little Girl needed to swing on a rope to cross the pit. The was a muddy slide, as the Little Girl slide down, she could feel the increasing speed and the shouts of the monkey behind her. They soon reached the bottom of the slide and continued the muddy trail. They had to push many balls that where in their path to reach the other side. Once they reached it they found a huge net which they climbed. A narrow passage was in front of them, and the Little Girl just ran sideways into it. Soon after they reached the end of the trail, and they saw a majestic volcano.
Guarding the path to the volcano was a mighty dragon. Each of the dragon's teeth was the size of the little girl. But that did not inspire any fear on the Little Girl's heart, instead she leaned forward with the monkey and jumped on each giant leaf surrounding the mighty dragon, the leaves acted like a trampoline and the Little girl jumped high enough to go over the head of the mighty dragon as it breathed the fire. She followed the monkey. She jumped once on the dragon's head and slide down the dragon's tail. She was again in the path of the volcano, and nothing more to stop her from reaching it.
The volcano laid in front of them, and the Little Girl started to climb, but the climb was slippery, for the volcano spit a liquid mud that made the climbing difficult. The monkey could not climb any further, but the Little Girl did not quit trying, she continued to climb. At a moment it looked like for each step she gave forward that she slide back two steps. But she continued, she insisted, and as the climb became more slanted the Little Girl climbed more slowly and more carefully selecting with precision each placeholder for the hands and feet. She climbed, some moments she almost felt quit, but somehow she felt encouraged to continue. She saw other kids failing to reach the top, one after another she saw them returning to the volcano base. But not her, she continued and pressed on with all her courage and determination.
She reached the top of the volcano! She sat for a while, admiring the surrounding, seeing everybody from high above, seeing the other kids failing halfway. She was victorious. Today was her day.

Sunday, 22 September 2013

Two wheels are enough

Do you remember training your child on the bicycle with two wheels ? What did your kid tell you ? Was he afraid ? What was the balance like ? Did he pedal or tried to get on the bike without feet on the front pedal ? Did he remember how to brake ? What was making the curves like ? Tell me your story, here is mine...

What a day, Papi put the bicycle in top of the table. And now he is all over the table with lot's of things from his toolbox.
"Papi, what are you doing?", asked the little girl.
"We are going to take the supporting wheels out of your bicycle"
"Wow..." shouted excitedly the little girl.
Papi was doing things on the bicycle, but the little girl was not convinced he knew what he was supposed to do. She got afraid when Papi came with a big hammer to hit the bicycle.
"Oh No! Papi, you are making the bicycle kaput!"
But Papi continued hammering, tweaking, screwing, moving, and shouting lot of loud words...
After a full hand of minutes passed, and another hand of minutes, and two more hands of minutes, Papi showed the bicycle to the little girl. The bicycle looked perfect, just two wheels, and the little girl got a new toy, two extra wheels to play at home!
They both got dressed, Papi went with the little girl to pick up clothes to go for the bike ride. Nice comfortable clothes, tight to not get into the bicycle wheels, and that could protect a fall. Papi went to fetch all the protecting stuff. Put the hard plastic protectors on the knees, on the elbows and on the hands. She could fall and not get hurt. The little girl practiced going against the wall. Banged loudly with the shoulders on the wall.
"Look Papi, look, I do not get hurt.", said the little girl proudly as she banged against the wall with the elbow protectors.
Papi picked up her helmet, and placed on the little girl.
Papi picked up the bicycle and went downstairs with the little girl.
"Let's go to the big area with no cars.", said Papi.
"Yeah!", ran the little girl down the stairs.
Once at the protected parking lot, Papi placed the bicycle on the ground, and the little girl jumped on the bicycle. Papi held the bicycle and the little girl sat with her feet on the pedals. The little girl started peddling, and not more than 1 meter had passed, Papi had already let go of the bicycle, the little girl was riding all alone, with perfect balance.
But Papi was afraid that the little girl could fall, he rad side by side with the little girl to help her break at the end of the straight line. At the end, Papi helped with the bicycle once more and turned the bicycle back. The little girl peddled once more and there she went.
The little girl rode 50 meters.
The little girl rode 70 meters.
The little girl rode 70 turned and did 30 meters more.
The little girl rode 100 meters.
The little girl made a pause, she was tired, she was very concentrated in getting her balance, but the confidence was getting better and better.
And after the little pause she got back on the bicycle and without the help from Papi made turns and turns on the parking lot.
Now the little girl was back and told Mamma the stories of a little champion that went very very fast with a bicycle just like the fast train. The little girl wants to go for a ride with Papi and Mamma, every one with their own bicycle, and nobody with supporting wheels.

Sunday, 15 September 2013

Statues at the Swimming Pool

Ever been with your kids in an environment with only people without kids ? How did you feel ? Did the other people make you and your kids feel welcome ? Do you get the other people might have never in their life been children ? Or do you feel you invaded their small space the came to refuge from children ? Did you enjoy yourself ? Do you make sure your kids feel loved and enjoyed in such places ? Tell me your story, here is mine...

The little girl arrived at the swimming pool. She loved the water, she always wanted to play in the water, it was always an adventure. The little girl still remembered the crocodile swimming to catch up with captain hook.
But this time it was different, it was the first time the little girl came to this swimming pool. It was the first time the little girl saw a swimming pool at a castle. The castle was big, lot of people were walking around, but here at the swimming pool, all the people where just sitting in beds and chairs around the pool. The people did not move, they seemed to just stare emptily at the books in their hands.
'Papi, the people don't move ?'
´They are statues little girl, they are statues, we are alone in the swimming pool'
With this the little girl jumped into the pool, making a huge splash. It was true,the people around the pool were just statues. The little girl laughed loudly, she was playing in the water, she splashed, made waves, jumped, laughed and jumped again with a splash.
The statues did not move, but the little girl did not worry, she was happy, she was alone at the pool, nobody to tell her to be quiet. It was bad when she was at home and the bad man from the floor under was always complaining at the little girl, she laughed and the old bad man banged on the floor.
But this time it was different, the sun was shining, and she was alone in the pool with Papi, she could make all the noise she wanted, only Papi and some statues reading books.

Friday, 16 August 2013

The Wild White Mustang

My child loves all the rides she finds in shopping centers. And always asks me for a coin. Does your child also love those rides ? Do you give her a coin ? How often do you allow them that small or big pleasure ? How does your kid react ? Share your story, here is mine...

The little girl saw the beautiful riding horse at the shopping mall. The great white horse was surrounded by Indians that seamed to try to help the horse. The little girl liked the horse, it seemed very fast. And she like the furry white with the black and grey mane. The white steed looked very noble although being a wild mustang of the american green prairies.
The little girl wanted to ride the white horse, but the white horse wanted the little girl to give it something precious, the white horse wanted a shiny silver coin, and the little girl had none. The little girl asked Papi for a shiny silver coin, and Papi told the little girl that she needed to earn the coin. The horse wanted something valuable, it could not be something that just appeared from thin air.
"Papi, how do I earn a shiny silver coin ?"
Papi took the little girl to the parking lot. There Papi opened the door to the little girl's backseat and showed the little girl all the confusion of toys and comic books all over the seats. Papi gave the little girl a small canvas bag to put everything. The little girl happily started putting away all her toys and comic books. Everything into the small canvas bag, and soon Papi's car backseat started looking much nicer. The little girl even found a small plastic white horse.
"Look Papi, the kid of the big white horse, I will take the small horse to meet it's Papi."
After the little girl put all her toys and comic books away, Papi gave the little girl a shiny silver coin. The little girl was very proud and happy and started running to the big white horse.
"Hello horsey, I have for you a shiny silver coin". The little girl hopped on the horse's back and gave the horse the shiny silver coin. The wild white horse neighed and started running.
The little girl was happy, she could feel the wind on her face as the wild white mustang raced across the Indian camp. All the Indians cheered as the little girl passed by them. The little girl was running fast on the wild white mustang. The little girl passed by a little Indian princess, she was called Tiger Lily, and the two little girls became friends and played together. They both rode the wild white mustang, and the wild white mustang ran around the Indian Village.
All Indians were happy as they saw their little princess playing with the new friend, the little girl. The chief was very happy, the Indian chief gave Papi the Indian drink of happiness, Papi drank this hot drink that had a strong smell. Papi called it coffee. Papi and the Indian chief talked while the little girl and Tiger Lily the Indian princess rode the wild white mustang around the village.
A bad man came to the Indian village. The bad man was saying bad things to Tiger Lily. The little girl did not like and made the wild white mustang go to the bad man. The wild white mustang stand on it's back legs and kicked the bad man's gun with the front legs. All the Indians laughed and the little girl shouted: "Go away bad man!". The wild white mustang kicked the bad man in his behind and the bad man ran away.
All the Indians were happy and shouted hooray for the little girl. The little girl was very happy, she had helped the Indian Village and her new friend Tiger Lily the Indian Princess.
The little girl climbed down the wild white mustang and happily told her father the story of how she helped the Indians with the white horse.

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

The Chess Street

The little girl was going down the street. Papi was taking the little girl shopping. The little girl crossed the street and now was just next to the shopping mall. The pavement was black and white. The pavement reminded the little girl of the funny black and white game Papi played with kings and queens.
The little girl could not step on the Black squares, that would make the shoes black. And the little girl liked her new red shoes. Papi had brought her the shoes from the land of the Indians. And the Indian shoes were much nicer than the ugly cowboy boots that made the tschlick noise when the cowboys walked and hurt the feet so bad that the cowboys made ugly faces.
The soft red shoes where very nice, so the little girl had to jump from white square to white square as she went along with papi to the shopping mall. The bid wall was right next to the nice square pavement. Papi said the wall could on go straight. That is why the wall had a special piece in papi's game. But papi called the wall the tower. The tower was very powerful, could block kings and queens from seeing the peasants. But the queen was very bad, she would go over the tower.
But the queen did not have the beautiful red shoes. Those were special, and they could jump from white square to white square. Papi started doing the same, papi was chasing the little girl from white square to white square. The little girl jumped faster, and papi had to fetch all is energies to chase the little girl.
Suddenly the little girl sees the big wall in front of her. What a powerful tower that was blocking her way. She looked to the window of the tower searching for the princess with the long hair. The little girl knew that soon a prince would come to rescue the princess in the tower. Papi said that the prince's horse jumped funny. The little girl was now looking for the horse that jumped funny.
The little girl saw the prince coming on horseback. But the horse did not jump funny. The little girl shouted to the prince: 'Make the horse jump'. And the horse did not jump funny, but the prince looked funny at the little girl. Papi said something to the prince about a shopping mall, when Papi said the princes name, the little girl giggled. Papi called the prince Police. The prince on the horse was Mr Policeman.
The little girl jumped on the white tiles all the way to the shopping mall that had the princess mannequins at the window.

Sunday, 11 August 2013

The Crocodile

The little girl sat by the swimming pool. She looked at Papi, she wanted to go into the water. She new she could not go unless Papi dressed her with the floaters. Papi seemed distracted and did not notice that the little girl was eager to get into the water. Finally she went to Papi, she held the floaters in her hand, and she swimmed in the air around Papi.
Papi got the message, with a smile, he held the floaters and dressed the little girl with them. One arm at a time. Once the little girl was dressed with the floaters, she ran to the edge of the swimming pool, eagerly waiting for Papi to come behind her. As soons as she felt Papi was close, she jumped into the swimming pool making a big splash. Papi followed and make a tsunami splash.
The little girl ran with the water slightly above her knees, she made nice waves as she ran throught the water. Papi layed in the water submerged with full body. Only the top of the head of Papi could be seen above water. Papi was a crocodile.
"Help me!", shouted the little girl, "the crocodile wants to eat my hand".
"Tic Toc, Tic Toc, Tic Toc," the little girl could hear the ticking crocodile approaching. Ever since the crocodile ate the clock it made this funny sound. As soon as Captain Hook heard the Tic, his ears went up in antecipation to the Toc. And with this sound, Captain Hook ran as fast as he could on the water. Tic Toc, made the crocodile, Toc Tic made the Captain's legs. Tic Toc, made the crocodile, Toc Tic made the Captain's legs.
Hook was terrified with the sound of the ticking crocodile, he had already lost his right hand to the crocodiles teeth, he did not want to loose the other hand, or the foot, or the other foot. Tic Toc, made the crocodile, Toc Tic made the Captain's legs.
The Captain spoted the little fairy. Captain Hook ran towards Tinkerbell. Tinkerbell had the magic dust that could make the Captain fly. Captain Hook knew about Tinkerbell's magic dust, Captain Hook wanted the magic dust to fly away from the crocodile.
Tic Toc, made the crocodile, Toc Tic made the Captain's legs.
"Peter Pan!" shouted the little girl, "Peter Pan!".
Papi saw the little girl shouting and calling for Peter Pan.
"Peter Pan!" shouted Papi, "Peter Pan!".
"PETER PAN!" shouted the little girl, "louder Papi, PETER PAN!".
"PETER PAN", shouted Papi together with the little girl.
Both of them shouted for Peter Pan, the little girl wanted Peter Pan to rescue Tinkerbell.
"Peter Pan is not coming" said Papi to the little girl.
And the wise little girl replied to Papi "Peter Pan is afraid of grandma".

Saturday, 10 August 2013

The Cloud

The little girl look excitedly out of the window of the plane. The plane had just started roaring its engines, the little girl felt the grip of the seat telling her to sit comfortably. But she did not want to do so, out of the window was where all the excitement lay. The runaway giving to the speed of the airplane has it roared running to the sky and clouds.
The little girl could see the trees passing fast, and faster. The little girl could see now the trees from up, all the plush green, like little broccoli. The trees gave way to big houses, then to smaller houses, then to little houses. The little girl could see the bus on the highway, then the car, then another car, soon she could see the full highway with lots of little cars, the little cars seemed like little ants taking food to their house.

And the clouds were approaching, the little girl could see distinctively the clouds approaching. It felt as if the little girl was swimming in cloud candy. It soon became white all around to give way to a fantastic new scenery. From the windows, the little girl could see the many clouds, making a fluffy white carpet where the little girl could put her soft feet. The little girl took off her shoes, she wanted to feel the soft clouds under. And she ran.
The little girl ran on top of the cloud with bare feet, she jumped from one cloud mushroom to the next. She would flap her arms to help her with the balance, especially when the mushrooms were very distant. It felt good, the little girl laughed, giggled, as she jumped onto a new mushroom. Then flap her arms, this new mushroom is very far away. She jumped, she was eager to make it to the next white mushroom, but she had not yet tried such a distance. Flap the arms once more, give a bigger try, stretch the neck to kae the jump longer. She was in mid jump, suddenly she stopped laughing, she started to doubt if she could reach the next mushroom. The jump seemed to take all the time in the world, the little girl could sense time freezing as she swam with her arms, stretch an arm, advance a leg, through the other arm. The little girl could feel the arm stretching as far has it could. The little girl closed the eyes as if it helped pass the time, as if not seeing the soft white carpet between the white mushrooms made the jump easier. Another leg stretched, another arm swing forward, the little girl opened her eyes and saw her foot reaching for the mushroom. Soon the second foot landed on the soft plushy white mushroom. Both knees bent to make the land easier, but it was not needed, the white mushrooms where very soft, she landed softly on the big white mushroom.
The mushroom liked the little girl, it slowly transformed into a comfortable white sofa where the little girl landed. The little girl sat on the white sofa and saw an opening in the cloud floor. The opening became large, she was looking into the TV screen, she was swing the fantastic forest in the white television. High above the little girl could see the little birds flying around the Forrest trees. All the little birds chipped cheerfully a beautiful song. The little girl followed the song, singing softly the repeating melody with the little birds. Papi could hear the little girl humming some nursery rhyme, but he could not clearly identify the song. He placed the pillow under the little girls head, and covered her with the small blanket.
Papi was happy, he liked when the little girl fell asleep on the plane trips.
And the little girl was happy, she was learning to whistle with the little birds.