Bobby, Bonnie and I will be traveling to the Denver area the end of January to share their stories and book with urban kids, thanks to my friend, LuAnn. Wish I could put these two in my suitcase and take them with me!
Being the oldest grandchild on both sides, and great-grandchild on my side, Alex got lots of attention early on and developed quite the personality. Alex was on the road to becoming a scholar athlete before starting kindergarten. Alex is motivated like his mama, and musical like his dad. Before he could get too spoiled, cousins and sibling soon followed, and soon they were following Alex, who has been developing his leadership skills ever since, including sitting at the head of the "kids" table at our family Christmas and keeping the younger ones in check.
As I write about Bobby and Bonnie, I can see them, their expressions and gestures, and hear them, all the intonations in their voices. I really like Bobby! I think he is a very likable, but slightly flawed, fellow. Bobby always seemed so familiar to me, but couldn't figure out why. After Life with Bobby and Bonnie was published, it finally dawned on me why Bobby was so familiar: he was one of my own family, Alex! Even though he just turned a very mature, 14 years old, Alex seemed pleased to know he's a character in my children's book.
Bobby, Bonnie and I have been writing our stories for about four years. As long as it took me to recognize Alex in Bobby, it took me even longer to recognize Tyari in Bonnie. My initial impression of Tyari when she came to my 2nd grade class was that she selfish, indulged and vain. As I got to know her, I discovered that under all that, was a helpful, devoted, responsible girl. One time in our 2nd grade classroom, two students got sick and started vomiting, almost simultaneously. Unable to get help from the nurse or office, Tyari had already pitched in with paper towels and trashcans. What a fantastic child! Each time I see her at a middle school event, I remind her that she will always be "my Tyari".
Tyari brought quite the reputation with her to our class, unfortunately, not a good one. She seemed to not only get upset, but have major meltdowns easily. It took me a while to figure out that Tyari is a perfectionist with extremely high expectations for herself, and for others. Breaking the code of Tyari took work and patience for both of us, but it has been so worth it! She is a beautiful young lady and wonderful student. I am so thankful the Lord blessed my world with her.
I sincerely hope you have terrific kids in your life like Alex and Tyari. In their own unique ways, they routinely bring joy to those around them. Who are the children (or adults) who inspire you? How do they bring out the best in you? How do you try to bring out the best in them?
4 Now we wait to receive the blessings God has for his children. These blessings are kept for you in heaven. They cannot be ruined or be destroyed or lose their beauty.