Otter B jumped out of bed. He ran over to his window. The sky was bright blue and filled with puffy clouds.
What a perfect day for playing outside! he thought. Maybe Mama can take me and Franklin to the creek to go sliding down the muddy bank.
Otter B dashed into the kitchen. “Mama! Can Franklin come over?”
“Not today, Otter B,” Mama said. “I just got a phone call. Franklin is sick.”
“What’s wrong?” Otter B asked.
“Franklin has a bad cough and a sore throat.” Mama explained. “He will have to stay inside for a few days.”
Otter B frowned. Franklin was his best friend. Playing outside was their favorite thing to do. Otter B looked through the window. The wind made the leaves in the big oak tree rustle. He thought about the cool creek water and the slip-slidey mud.
“I really wanted to play with Franklin today,” Otter B said with a sigh.
“I know,” Mama said. “I’m sure Franklin is disappointed too.”
Otter B thought about how Franklin was feeling. It was probably no fun to have a bad cough and a sore throat. Suddenly, he had an idea!
Otter B found a cardboard box. He took the box and ran outside. He searched the backyard until he found just what he was looking for.
Otter B closed the box and pulled out some of his favorite stickers from his pocket to decorate it. Then he took the box indoors.
“Mama, can I have some paper and glue and scissors and crayons?”
“What are you up to?” Mama asked.
“I’m making something special for Franklin,” Otter B declared.
He folded the paper. Then he cut out some shapes and colored them. Lastly, he glued the shapes onto the paper and drew a picture.
On the inside of the card, Otter B wrote a special note to Franklin.
“Can we walk over to Franklin’s house, Mama? I want to take him the cheer-up present I made.”
Mama nodded. “We can go after lunch.”
Otter B and Mama prayed before they ate. At the end of the prayer, Otter B added, “—and please help Franklin feel better.” Then Otter B ate his fish sticks in big bites and slurped down his milk.
“Now, Mama?” asked Otter B as he helped carry their dishes to the sink.
Mama laughed. “OK, let’s go!”
Otter B skipped in circles all the way to Franklin’s house. He rang the doorbell and waited.
Franklin’s mama answered. “What a nice surprise to see you!” she said, smiling.
Otter B gave her the box and the card for Franklin.
“Can you tell him I’m really sorry he’s sick and that I prayed for him and that I hope he can come out and play soon and… well, I guess that’s it for now!”
On the way home, Mama held Otter B’s hand. “What was in your present?”
Otter B grinned. “There’s some pretty leaves, three round stones, an acorn and a ladybug! I decided that if Franklin couldn’t play outside, I would give him some outside to play with inside!”
Mama laughed. “What a kind friend you are, Otter B!” She gathered him up in a big hug. “You thought about what would make Franklin happy, and you spent your day making it for him. I’m sure he knows just how much you care about him!”
Kindness doesn’t cost a thing,
And thoughtfulness is free.
So when you have a chance, be kind.
It’s how you Otter Be!
“Be kind and tender to one another.” —Ephesians 4:32
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