As a mom, my biggest hope for The Adventures of Rooney Cruz is to help moms feel comfortable talking about what real beauty is and the special gifts God gave each of us that help us walk in that beauty. Joy is a mama–just like you and just like me. She gave us her thoughts on "Abigail: The Belle of Bravery", and we thought that you might like to see it too. What we hand our kids for entertainment is a dangerous game we all play as moms, but maybe this will help the next time you go to reach for a book off the shelf before bedtime:
Last October 29th, my 5-year old daughter and I were given a privilege to be part of the Belle Brigade and launch team of “Abigail” The Belle of Bravery”. Although I already knew Abigail’s story beforehand, I was still excited to read it to my daughter. When I showed the e-book cover to my daughter, she was ecstatic! She couldn’t wait for us to read the story. She was like, “Mommy, read the story now, please! Mommy, please!” She couldn’t hide her excitement!
So, I began reading the story. At first, I was having doubts my daughter would soon get bored and say, “Let’s just finish it later, Mom.” It seemed that she very much liked the story that we were able to finish reading it in one seating. She enjoyed looking at the illustrations. As I read and she listened, she would look for the pictures and once in a while ask me, “Mom, is this it?” And when I was done reading, she asked me to scroll back to the photos that she would like to look at again.
I asked her which part of the story she liked best. She showed me the page where Rooney was praying after Mari showed her what Abigail did when faced with a circumstance. She also liked the page that followed wherein Rooney decided to follow Abigail’s example. I believe my daughter got the message, for when I asked her some questions, she was quick to respond and answer my questions sincerely and correctly. She was even begging me to read it again, haha! And then she asked me if we could buy a copy from our local bookstore. She told me she wants us to read it again and again. She was like, “Can we read it again later, Mom? Can we, please? Can we go to the bookstore and buy it, Mom? Please Mommy?”
After reading the story, I asked her, “Did you like the story?” She said, “Yes, Mommy! It’s a nice story! I like Rooney, Mom. She’s brave and kind. I also like to have a bell.” Also she was honest enough to tell me, “It’s just a long story, Mom. I felt like I would fall asleep. But it’s a nice story. I really like it. I want to be like Rooney.” Then I asked her, “What is bravery to you?” Then she was like, “Bravery? What is bravery?” I told her bravery means being brave. So I rephrased the question, “What does being brave mean to you? What do you think it is?” And she answered, ‘I’m brave when Jesus is with me and watching over me. Being brave means you’re not afraid to do what is right.” “Just like Rooney and Abigail?” I asked. “Yes, Mom,” she replied.
I believe this is a good material or reference to use to teach every parent’s daughters about bravery. The illustrations are attractive; the message is simple, sound and Scripture-based (biblical). Depending on the attention span of the child, the story should be read for as long as she likes it. Perhaps incorporate an activity or two to reinforce the lesson, in this case, Bravery, the parents want to instill in their children’s hearts.
Erin Weidemann is a teacher turned professional author and speaker. A former college athlete, Erin is also a five-time cancer survivor. She lives in Encinitas, California with her husband Brent and their daughter Rooney. Alongside her husband, she is the co-founder of Bible Belles, a company that helps girls discover real beauty through the female heroes of the Bible.
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