The Barefoot Boy
Blessings on thee, little man,
Barefoot boy, with cheeks of tan!
With thy turned up pantaloons,
And thy merry whistled tunes;
With thy red lip, redder still
Kissed by strawberries on the hill;
With the sunshine on thy face,
Through thy torn brim's jaunty grace,
From my heart I give thee joy . . .
Thougthts on boys:
- They're gonna get dirty and into trouble: love 'em anyway!
- If they love veggies and fruits, count your blessings!
- Train 'em in the way they should go: give respect to their elders, manners to the ladies, kindness to animals, love for plants, and honor to themselves. You'll be glad you did.
- Teach them to use their imagination: roll down the hills with them, lie in the grass and watch the stars or wait for the little critters to appear. Wonder with them about the stars and other worlds. Make daisy chains. Smell a rose. Play with the pet. Pick some berries. Go fishing. or camping or boating or indoor sleep-on-the-floor party.
- Dream with them about what used to be and what can be. Give them good examples from the past; encourage them to fulfill their dreams of the future.
- Share stories with them. True and fictional. Bring characters alive in their minds. Join them in pretending they're pirates and presidents; preachers and clowns; firemen and school teachers.
- Let them go barefoot: in the dirt, water, sand, grass.
- Show them what it feels like to wear a hat: cowboy, police, gentleman, or baseball.
- Tell them about and let them experience consequences. It will teach them as a child to be careful as an adult, to accept responsibility, to learn.
- Most of all, love them no matter what. Make sure they know you do and you'll always be there.