One week ago, I made a fleece Goldfish and explained to my family that we needed a name for our new “fish”…everyone contributed and then we voted and the winning name was “Cheddar”.
Everyone wanted to know why Cheddar had been created and I shared with my family that I had read an article from the Fishful Thinking website on Pausing for the Positive and it inspired me to create an activity for our family.
“Starting tonight Cheddar is going to be looking for positive things he can help you do. Maybe William left his matchbox cars in the middle of the floor, whomever has Cheddar might want to pick up the cars for William secretly and leave Cheddar on top of his car case. Then William and Cheddar will start their adventure on finding something positive to do for someone else. Then at the end of each day, we’ll talk about Cheddar’s Good Deeds. We’ll talk about what the best part of finding him and giving him was? What inspired you to think of doing that? What surprised you most about getting him? How did you feel?”
Everyone wanted Cheddar first so we had to have a name drawing and my 6-year-old was selected to be the keeper and sender of Cheddar. It wasn’t long before Cheddar had found his way to helping a folded laundry pile find its way to my 15-year-old son’s bed. From there Cheddar found his way to picking up toys in the girl’s room. His adventure continued…
The next night at dinner, Cheddar was the star of the conversation..and he has been ever since. My three-year-old said, “It makes me happy to see Cheddar.”
Our Treasure Box is also growing because, through Cheddar, my children are seeing the positive and good that surrounds them…sometimes waiting for them to pass it along.
The bickering is minimal. It’s far more fun to have Cheddar and plan out the Good Deed of picking up a soggy towel, or taking out the trash, than whining about how it isn’t fair and how this person never does his share.
The best parts of Cheddar have been:
- “I was late from band practice and didn’t want to get in trouble for not raking the leaves, but when I got home, Cheddar was on the rake.”
- “Today I had a migraine and I appreciated Cheddar putting my textbooks in my backpack.”
- “Finding my lunch was made for tomorrow was great!”
- “I liked when he made my bed”.
Nighttime now includes a tucking in conversation about what tomorrow’s plan includes with Cheddar, “I hope I get him so I can ________ for _______”
As we were laying in bed last night, my husband said, “I thought I had outgrown that feeling you get when someone picks you.” and well, my 19-year-old gave me a big hug and said, “Thanks, Mom. This is fun. Hey, wait! Are we learning something?”
Indeed we are!