It's Okay to be Different

Every once in a while when I’m feeling rather grumpy and out-of- sorts, I enjoy spending an hour or so in the children’s section of the bookstore.

I usually find that children’s books have a magical way of touching my heart; allowing me to look at life through the eyes of a little one.

Last weekend I discovered a wonderful series of books by author Todd Parr. There was something about the way the book covers looked that drew me to them. They also had a special loving energy about them.

The one that really jumped out at me was It’s Okay to be Different.

And as I sat there with my cup of java, I felt myself being deeply touched by the sweet child-like illustrations and the words that celebrated our differences...

Things like: our skin color, height, weight, or physical disabilities. Also things such as: being adopted, or being raised by a single parent or even same-sex parents, are things to be embraced and understood as being okay.

It was a brief book, so it didn’t take me very long to read through it. I found myself glancing through some of Todd’s other books too. Each one had a wonderful message within it which ironically was something I needed to be reminded of.

And I couldn’t help but wish that these books had been available when I was a child because they all seemed to be such a natural and healthy way to live life.

By the end of the afternoon it literally felt as if my heart had softened.

So if you have some time, please do yourself a favor and visit Todd’s World. It’s the cutest damn thing you ever saw. It’s like stepping back into your childhood. You’ll find information about Todd, his personal website, his books, special events…and his dog, Bully.

And above all…you’ll FEEL GOOD!

Enjoy!




28 comments

  1. What great books, so colourful! I love to read to the grandchildren not just for their pleasure but for mine too - kids books are so uncomplicated. :)

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  2. <---reads Dr. Seuss on a regular basis (has her own copies, noless!)

    And of course, I blow bubbles and play with sidewalk chalk.
    And colour in my colouring books.
    Oh....and fingerpaint!
    Though, yaknow, I haven't fingerpainted in a heck of a long time....oughta pull those paints out and have a go of it..

    Today's world isn't an all bad deal.......even though the notsogood stuff seems to get a lot of airtime.





    It really is a wonderful world.



    *humming now! LOL*

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  3. Thanks for the tip, Ron. I think that's a great idea we all could benefit from. Put down your newspaper and pick up a children's book! Much better messages. Plus you won't feel like the end of the world is right around the corner. Something to make us feel good right now is a blessing.

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  4. Morning Akelamalu~

    ME TOO!!!

    I SO enjoy reading a book to a child for my OWN pleasure, as well!

    In fact, I usually end up enjoying it MORE than the child!!!

    tee, hee..

    Todd's books seem to reach deep into a person's soul...and gently guide them.

    He's got a very special "gift."

    Hope you enjoy them, dear lady!

    And as always...thank you for stopping by today!

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  5. Howdy Mel~

    YOU, dear lady...we're the one I thought of the most when I discovered these books!!!

    (knowing our mutual love of "kid's stuff")

    I thought, "Mel would LOVE these!"

    So if you have some time...get yourself a cup of coffee, some bubbles and visit Todd's place. I think you would really SMILE!!!

    Thanks for dropping by, Mel. It's always fun being a kid with you!

    *humming now too!!!!

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  6. Morning Miss Nitebyrd~

    Sometimes I can get a VERY negative attitude about the world in general.

    So it was a special blessing that these precious books came into my life that afternoon.

    And I truly mean it...it felt as though my heart had been reminded of the important things...and had softened.

    YEPEEEEE!!!

    Thank you, lady Nitebyrd for dropping by this morning.

    Always a blessing!

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  7. Those books look great! I do think there are much more diverse books out now than there used to be, and I'm so thankful for them.

    When I'm feeling down, browsing through the bookstore is one of the first things I want to do. And, I do love the children's section as well, although I start grabbing books I know my kids would love and end up spending too much money. I LOVE bookstores.

    I often find myself reading young adult books because the messages in them can be so wonderful. And, don't get me started on Harry Potter. LOVE that series.

    Nice post, thanks for sharing!

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  8. Hi Ron!
    I checked out a couple of his books and they really are neat! Such good positive messages not just for kids but adults. I guess I didn't really need permission to eat macaroni and cheese in the bathtub if I so desire but WOW, just the things that pop into mind after just a couple suggestions. I might give myself the go ahead to do lots more stuff like that. ;)

    It certainly IS okay to be different!

    A book that I always loved and still read occasionally is 'The Phantom Tollbooth' about a young boy named Milo who is soooo bored with his life and then finds a package in his room and after constructing and going thru the tollbooth he ends up visiting neat places.

    And I was also reminded today of Willy Wonka, another book/movie that I love. The part when the kids have to sign this long ass contract with teeny print. Well, I got a letter in the mail today about an upcoming craft fair I'm doing in a very small local town. It had a page to read and sign and boyohboyohboy it was funny.....
    something something ... the aforementioned shall hold no legal claims or liabilities for hardships or difficulties arising from any participation in stated fair and will not blah, blah, blah, or blah, blah, blah, or yada, or yada, or heretofore said mentioned something something blah, resulting in harm, injury, horrid wretched vile death occurance because of said vendors relationship with any territory of the world or it's affiliates under god and goddesses of all universes said hitherto and therefore shall become a nonbinding resolution on such and such day for such and such time during which said participant will release township of causal responsibilities and liabilities.... blah yada blah.
    OMFG. Funny. But it was totally serious. I had to sign the freaking thing and send it back so I could participate.
    I am guessing that township has been sued before. LOL
    Adults make things sooooo complicated.
    I'm totally with you. Read some good kid books, find our inner child and chill OUT!
    Hey, sitting under that tree with blanket and music this past weekend sounded like an awesome time. Thanks for stopping by to say hi!
    Peace! M

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  9. ron...I love this. I already have children book to read m bubba, but I never has enough book. I like that...It's okay t be Different. I love that.

    I'm excited...yes! Yep, i'm goingbto Todd's World right now.

    thanks baby...you rock!

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  10. Howdy Rhea~

    You sounds just like me, dear lady!

    There's something so calming and peaceful about being in a bookstore. I sware...I'm a addict! I go to Borders at least 4 times a week!!!

    (they all know me by name now)

    And your RIGHT...I've also check out the young adult section, and the books seem to be a wonderful guide to help them at a time when life can be very confusing.

    Hey...and can you believe that I have NEVER read a single Harry Potter book, or seen any of the movies?????

    I know...I should be shot!

    Everyone I've ever known who has read them...said they're the BEST!!!

    What the hell is the matter with me???

    Oh, well...some day I'm SURE I'll pick one up and never stop reading them until I finish every volume!!

    Thanks for stopping by and sharing in our mutual passion for BOOKS!!!

    Yahoo!!!

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  11. Evening Miss Jones~

    Hey...if I had a child, I KNOW I'd probably need a library to store all the books in!!!

    Oh...it must be SO MUCH FUN reading books to bubba!!!!

    One summer I taught a creative dramatics class to children 4 1/2 years old to 6....and can I just tell you how much fun we had ACTING out the stories??

    (I actually think "I"
    enjoyed it more than they!!!)

    aaahhh...to never forget the "child within"... is truly the Universes greatest gift!

    Thank you much for stopping by, Spiky!

    And I hope you enjoyed Todd's World as much as I did!

    Ciao bella!

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  12. Good Evening Crystal Chick aka Willy Wonka!

    I can tell, that if you and I were to ever go to the bookstore together...we'd be sitting on the floor with our coffee's and playing with sock puppets!!!

    Wouldn't that be fun???

    Hey...SO GLAD you stopped by Todd's World. Didn't you just LOVE his web site design???? God...I keep going back to it once a week and finding new stuff to read. What a wonderful gift he has! Glad you enjoyed...I had a feeling you would!

    OMG!!!...I CANNOT BELIEVE the legal document you had to sign prior to your setting up for the craft show!!!! It sounded like something you have to sign before a medical operation in the hospital...jeeees!

    But I bet your right. Maybe the township has been sued before!

    You said it, M...adults can sometimes make things SOOOO difficult, ya know?

    CHILL people...and read some Dr. Seuss!!!!

    Always great seeing ya, M!

    Thanks for stopping by and sharing your "inner child!"

    P.S. And the tollbooth book sounds WONDERFUL...I will definately check it out the next time I'm in Borders!

    (like tomorrow)

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  13. Wow, Ron thanks for the link. I will definitely look into these books. I have somewhat of an addiction to buying books and I have passed that along to my kids. They are always begging for me to buy them a book and I usually say yes.
    My husband hasn't read a book since he was in college. He prefers to read the internet, LOL. Anyways, he is constantly complaining about how many books are in our house. And I keep buying them.
    I especially want to look into the "It's Okay to Be Different" book. This is a very important lesson that I try to teach my kids every day. When I was a kid, in my family it was not okay to be different, it still isn't.

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  14. Evening Nicole~

    Great seeing ya, dear lady!

    You're very welcome!

    I think you'll REALLY enjoy Todd's message. There was just something about the way he conveys his feelings through his words and illustrations that really touched me.

    And I think you're such a wonderful parent to be teaching your children that it's okay to embrace differences. You're planting "little seeds" of enlightenment into their hearts, that they will take with them through their entire lives...and then touch others.

    That's what I feel is Todd's whole purpose for creating these books.

    Oh...and I hear you on book collecting!!! I got to the point where I finally had to decide to start passing on some of my books to other people, because it got to be overwhelming! I mean, my apartment is a studio...so I just don't have the space for a library of books!!!

    I hope if you visit Todd's site you enjoy it...I think you will!

    Let me know.

    Thanks for stopping by, Nicole. Always nice chatting with you!

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  15. Awwww bless your little cotton socks Ronnie!!!

    You're just like me!!! We're just big kids at heart!!!

    I bet you'd be the type to have imaginary cups of tea with the kiddies too! I know I am!!!

    *GiGGLeS* xx

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  16. Oh OHHHH!!!

    I'm sooooooo excited!
    There's pages to colour and activities AND you can make your own book!

    :-)
    TOYS!!!!

    <---does not put underwear in the freezer.....just so ya know...LOL

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  17. Morning' Giggle!!!

    ooohh...oooh....how did you guess???

    Yes, and not only imaginary teacups...but also imaginary invisible friends!!!

    tee, heeeee!

    And yes, dear Giggle...I'm really just a BIG kid at heart.

    I bet you and I would have so much fun shopping together in a TOY STORE!!!

    Speaking of TOYS...didn't you LOVE the movie TOY STORY???

    It was a piece of GENIUS!

    Thanks for stopping by this day, dear lady. It's always fun having a tea party with you!

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  18. Mornin' Mel!

    O O O O O O O.....I am SOOOOO glad you went over and checked out his website!!!

    Didn't you just LOVE IT???

    I tell you, Mel...I kept thinking of you the WHOLE TIME I was there. I KNEW you'd enjoy it!!

    I wish I could just JUMP into the website and play with everything...don't you?

    And if you notice...everytime you go back to the website...the open page keeps changing. I discovered that this week.

    And didn't you LOVE the Underwear Book?

    Ok...so let me know when you make your own book....Mel's World...tee, hee!

    Thanks for stopping back and letting me know you enjoyed yourself!

    Enjoy your day, dear Mel!

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  19. I enjoyed going over to Todd Parr's place. He is very creative individual. I felt the young energy of his work and the awe of it all as I wandered my way around his site.
    It has renewed my motivation to get back into the writing for childern again. I always had so much fun when I was in this frame of mind. Guess I will get my pen and pencils ready.
    Thank you

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  20. Glad i popped over and caught this post, i certainly will chack out those books!

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  21. Afternoon Dave!

    Great to see ya, buddy!

    SOOOOO happy you went over to Todd's World. And YES...couldn't you just FEEL the wonderful energy there? There's something very magical about it...isn't there?

    Hey...I had no idea you wrote for children?!?!

    And I have a FEELING...that you're very, very, very fabulous at it too. I can tell, because of your hysterical humor!!

    I think Libra's have this "child' inside of them...always wanting to burst out and DANCE!

    Thanks ever so much for dropping by, my friend.

    Enjoy your day!

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  22. Hellllloooooo Casdok!!!!!

    Oh my god...this is TOOOO weird, but EVERY SINGLE time I think of you...I suddenly discover a comment from you!

    Just this past weekend, you and C have been in my thoughts. I've been wondering how you both were. I also spoke to my friend in Florida (the one who's son is autistic) a couple of days ago, and she and I were talking about YOU and your blog!!!!

    Isn't that something?

    Anyway...YES. If you get a chance to visit Todd's site, I know you'll get such a warm feeling in your heart, as I did.

    Thank you SO MUCH for stopping by and saying hello. It always makes me happy!

    Love to you and C!

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  23. Sometimes the weight of the sorld can be a bit overwhelming can't it? Taking a step back and viewing it from a child's perspective can be both enlightening and refreshing.

    I love asking the boys what they noticed about a particular person, because it's never their skin color, or physical appearance or any other "lable" that we as adults tend to put with someone. They always say something like, "He talked really loud, or she was silly..."

    In other words, they see the persons personality rather than their appearence.

    Sometimes our children can teach us a tremendous amount about human relations when we listen.

    Good stuff my friend.

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  24. Evening Jeff!

    Hey...that's WONDERFUL about your sons!! And I think it's also WONDERFUL that you notice that about them!

    It's so true Jeff, standing back and looking at life through a childs eyes DOES bring enlightenment. And that's exactly how I felt when I read some of these books!

    Just from know you, I have a feeling that your boys are naturally very accepting and kind. And I'm sure Lisa is exactly the same.

    Thanks for stopping by this evening, buddy.

    It's always nice sharing with you.

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  25. I love children's books too..of course, it could be that I am still a child at heart. :)

    I love to buy books for my grandchildren..but I buy one for me also, because we have to keep a copy at Nana's house too. hee, hee.
    The images and messages are simply wonderful in this series. Thank you for sharing it with us!

    Love ya!

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  26. Evening Dearest Gypsy-Heart~

    aahhhh...to NEVER lose that "child at heart" is such an awesome thing, isn't it?

    My dear friend in Florida (the Capricorn) and I use to LOVE to get together and have a day of acting totally like children. We use to say that we were so lucky to have a friend that we could be SILLY with!

    So glad you checked out this series of books. Aren't they SWEET? Todd has a very special gift!

    Thanks for stopping by, dear friend. And for sharing in the joy of being a child!

    Love ya too!

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  27. *GiGGLeS* Oh yes!!! Toy stores and Toy story are 2 of my many favourite things!!!

    *Clears throat for cute singing voice*

    'There's a place, upstairs,
    No one knows, it's there,
    It's a place, where I go,
    and I feel, quite at home!

    I take, my bear,
    To the top, of the stair,
    and we meet all our friends,
    and we sit and pretend!

    Cups of tea, for you,
    Cups of tea, for me,
    and we laugh, and we play,
    and they stay ALL DAAAAAAY!!!

    And thats where I go when I need my friends,

    But no body knows....

    Coz it's only preeeeeeeeteeeeeeennnd!!!'


    :-) *GiGGLeS* xx

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  28. APPLAUSE, APPLAUSE, APPLAUSE!!!!

    BRAVO, BRAVO, BRAVO!!!!!

    OMG, Giggles that was sooo cute!!!!

    And you have a BEAUTIFUL voice!!!

    I have a funny feeling, that you and I would play "pretend"...and have a BLAST!!!

    *one sugar or two?

    Thanks SO MUCH for the song, dear lady...it REALLY made me smile!!

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