A Musical Birthday
Value-Based Story for Children – Appreciation
Jenny and Melissa are playing badminton in the park. Rocky and Jason are having a game of football. Lindsay is busy finishing her homework.
Suddenly Melissa announces, “Hey guys! Yesterday mom told me it’s granny’s birthday next week.”
“Oh really! Let’s do something special for her,” enthuses Lindsay.
“What should we do?”asks Rocky. “Well, we can give a party for her,” advices Jason. “Mom told me the whole neighbourhood is planning a special birthday celebration for granny. Mom’s baking granny’s favourite lemon cake,” remembers Melissa.
“Our mom didn’t tell us about her plans,” chorus the brother and sister duo, Jason and Jennifer. “I’ll ask mom to make her chicken cutlets which I know everyone will like,” says Lindsay. “Wow, aunty makes such yummy cutlets. I can’t wait to eat them,” shouts Rocky. “I’ll go home and ask mom about her party plans,” he adds.
“That’s fine, but what should we do to make granny’s birthday really special?”queries Melissa.
“I have an idea. Rocky plays the mouth organ very well and Lindsay sings beautifully. Little Melissa can dance and Jenny and I can play the guitar and drums. Why don’t we prepare a musical event for granny?”questions Jason.
“I think it’s a brilliant idea. Granny will be so pleased, but let’s keep it a secret,” says Rocky. “How will we keep it a secret? We have to practice and our folks are sure to find out.” Says Lindsay. “Ya and one of them may blurt it out by mistake,” says Mel. “Well, since we don’t want anyone spilling the beans, I know what we can do,” says Jason. “Tell us what is going on in your head pal?”asks Rocky.
“Here is my plan. We will practice at my house in the afternoons in the den where my drums are kept. Dad will be at his office and mom will go to play bridge at her ladies club. So, the den will be at our disposal,” plans Jason. “Which day in the week does aunty go to her club?”asks Rocky.
“Well, she goes everyday except Wednesdays when she goes to help at the old peoples home,” answers Jennifer. “Good, then we will start our practice sessions from tomorrow,” says Lindsay.
Next afternoon, the children meet at the den. After much debating, they choose a lively song. They practice every day, enjoying themselves. At last the day of granny’s birthday arrives. The friends are very excited. That morning, the children carry the instruments to the backyard of granny’s house. Her gardner’s son Joey helps bring the drums. He is of course sworn to secrecy before he is taken into confidence. The adults gather around early evening and Angela Anderson is surprised to learn that she is going to have a birthday celebration.
Melissa’ mom arranges her lemon cake on the dining table. Angela cuts the cake. Everyone claps.
“I love the cake,” says granny helping herself to a second piece. Everyone praises the chicken cutlets which are disappearing very fast. “I’m going to take a second cutlet before they finish,” says Rocky, running to the table. After everyone has eaten, granny receives various gifts of flowers, embroidered hankies, table cloths and bedcovers. Lindsay’s mom gifts granny the latest copy of her favourite mystery novels. Angela is overwhelmed and thanks everyone profusely, smiling broadly.
The children disappear to the backyard and Joey helps set the instruments in the garden. When every thing is ready Melissa calls out loudly, “Come outside everyone. We have a surprise for you.”
Everyone throngs outside with Angela Anderson leading the way. “Sit down folks. We have prepared a song for granny,” says little Melissa.
Everyone takes a seat on the chairs Joey has arranged for them. There is a special armchair for granny to sit right at the front. The performance begins and everyone sits quietly to enjoy themselves.
At the end, there is loud clapping with congratulations. Granny has tears in her eyes as she hugs each child.
“I’m so proud of you my darlings. Words cannot describe my appreciation. You deserve more than the return favours I have for you, but it will do for now. Jennifer, will you please go and get the gifts from my room? They are kept on the bed in a big red cloth bag,” asks granny.
“Sure granny,” smiles Jenny, running inside the cottage. She comes back with the bag and hands it over to granny. “Thank you, my child,” thanks granny, with a big smile. She takes out gaily wrapped gifts for the kids and gives one to each of them. “Thanks granny,” chorus the five friends.
“You didn’t have to do this Angela. Your love and appreciation is enough,” says Jenny’ mom. “These are small tokens which these kids really deserve. We are lucky to have such talented kids amongst our midst and I really appreciate what all of them did for me. Thanks to them, my birthday was really special,” said granny hugging all the kids once again.
The party ends and the guests take their leave. “Many happy returns of the day granny,” chorus the five friends, giving a peck on granny’ cheek.
VALUE IN FOCUS: Appreciation
CELEBRATING WORLD MUSIC DAY, 2017
Written By: Amita is a Story teller and a spiritual writer.
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