Teddy woke up feeling grumpy. Auntie June came like usual after breakfast to take care of Teddy and Franklin, while Mommy taught school to the bigger children. When it was time to do laundry with Auntie June, he pouted because it wasn’t his turn to pour in the soap, and he pushed Franklin off the stool. When Auntie June pulled out the Legos, Teddy didn’t feel like playing nicely either. He grabbed all the train pieces and tried to knock down Franklin’s tower.
“You need to play sweetly, Teddy,” Auntie June said.
Teddy looked at her and his frown only got bigger. Teddy didn’t want to play sweetly so he grabbed Franklin’s Legos again. Franklin let out a howl and Teddy smiled a tiny mean smile. He was glad that Franklin was mad too.
Auntie June looked at him sadly and pulled him into her lap. “Teddy,” she said, “I’m sorry that you are having a grumpy morning. You will have to sit in your crib until you can be sweet and play happily again.”
Teddy kicked when Auntie June lifted him into his crib. He was about to scream when Auntie June started climbing in his crib, too! Teddy put his fingers in his mouth and looked at her carefully. Why was she in the crib? Auntie June wasn’t in trouble.
“Teddy,” Auntie June said softly, “I don’t want you to have to be in this crib. Do you know that?” She was looking right into his eyes. “I want you to have a wonderful day with Franklin and me. Are you going to choose to have a cheerful heart and be sweet so we can play together again?”
Teddy studied her face. Did she really want him to have a good day and not be in trouble? Teddy felt his heart get a little bit soft and he wanted to sit in Auntie June’s lap. He reached out his arms, but his face still had a big frown.
“You can come and sit in my lap, but first I need to see a smile,” said Auntie June.
But Teddy wasn’t ready to have a cheerful heart yet. He was still thinking about being mean and making Franklin mad. After all, Franklin had grabbed some of his toys, too. Did he want to give up his grudge? Auntie June wanted him to have a good day, and suddenly Teddy knew that he did, too. He was ready to give up being stubborn and say he was sorry to Franklin. His heart begin to feel warm just thinking about it. He smiled a little smile and looked up at Auntie June. She was smiling at him too, and he climbed into her lap.
“I’m so glad that you chose to be cheerful, Teddy,” she said, hugging him. “Do you know what it’s time for? It’s time to pick up all the Legos with Franklin and then we can go outside! Are you ready to give Franklin a hug and be sweet?”
Teddy nodded happily and together they crawled out of his crib. And that’s how Teddy’s morning turned around!
—by “Auntie June”