Kindness of Strangers

Six pounds of blueberries picked today, all by my lonesome.

We’ve got 17 blueberry bushes of our own, but they’re not producing much yet, so I went, as I have for the past twelve years, to our neighbors’ farm to get my blueberry fix.

It’s about 90 degrees today and blueberry bushes don’t cast a heck of a lot of shade, so picking was hot work. It was made much more pleasant by the presence of a family who was picking nearby. Two very young boys with their parents, and every word the parents said, both to each other and to their children, was thoughtful and pleasant and kind and reasonable. The parents’ tones were reflected in the boys’. Perfectly normal relatively-new-to-the-planet-person behavior (I’m going to pee here.  Look what I found!  I want to throw a stick.  He took my stick!) was responded to with good humor and patience.

I’ve been asked, if I were to sum up my book in one sentence, what would it be?

It’s ok to be kind to your children.

Truly, it is. There’s no need to snap at, boss, or reprimand. No need to yell or scold. Kindness doesn’t spoil people. Kindness make people happy. The person being treated kindly, the person acting kindly, and the stranger standing nearby.

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