Tag Archives: lessons learned from Charlotte’s web

Lesson 1547 – Lessons Learned from Charlotte’s Web – Chapter 8

Charlotte’s Web Chapter 8 – A Talk At Home

 

One Sunday morning, while talking to her parents at the breakfast table Fern tells them about all the conversations she hears in the barn. She tell them how the goose gave a rotten egg to Templeton and how Charlotte was the first to congratulate the goose when her eggs started hatching.

Fern’s mother, Mrs. Arable is alarmed that Fern thinks she can understand what the animals are saying. “I think I shall ask Dr. Dorian about her the next time I see him.”

Mr. Arable grinned. “Maybe our ears aren’t as sharp as Fern’s.”

Chapter 8 Lessons Learned

 

Fern’s mother doesn’t believe that Fern can understand what the animals are saying.

Lesson Learned – Sometimes kids have incredible talents and strengths that may be difficult to believe.

 

Fern’s mother wants to take her to a doctor, her dad wants to indulge in what may be a fantasy.

Lesson Learned – Moms want to fix, dads want to have fun.

Bonus lesson – sometimes it takes being quiet to hear what is being said.

 

***

Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

Like what you read here? Consider subscribing to this blog so that you’ll never miss a post. And feel free to share with those who may need a little chicken love.

Leave a comment

Filed under Inspiration, Personal, Points to ponder, The Family

Lesson 1545 – Lessons Learned from Charlotte’s Web – Chapter 7

Charlotte’s Web – Chapter 7 Bad News

Over time Wilbur likes Charlotte more and more and even tolerates her killing and eating insects. He is especially impressed that she anesthetizes them before she kills them – a “little service” she throws in.

Days pass and Wibur grows and gets larger and larger. He enjoyed good health and gained a lot of weight.

One day a sheep walks by the barn. “Hello” she said. “seems to me you’re putting on weight.”

Wilbur takes it as a compliment. At his age it’s a good idea to keep gaining.

“You know why they’re fattening you up, right?” asks the sheep who then goes on to tell Wibur that once truly fatten-up, he will be killed. The sheep tells Wilbur that there is a regular conspiracy of murder in the barn around the holidays.

When it’s time everyone comes together to shoot and prepare the yearly pig.

Upset, Wilbur asks Charlotte if the information is true.

Well, she tells him, the sheep has been in the barn for many years and has seen a lot of things, the story must be true. But, she adds “It’s also the dirtiest Trick I ever heard of.”

Wilbur cries that he doesn’t want to die. He wants to stay in his comfortable manure pile with all his friends breaing the beautiful air and lying in the beautiful sun.

“You shall not die” declares Charlotte.

“How?” asks Wilbur.

“That remains to be seen. But do stop crying.”

 

Chapter 7 Lessons Learned

Overtime, Wilbur and Charlotte become friends. He overlooks her objectionable eating habits and she’s very patient when Wilber cries.

Lesson Learned – Friendships take time. The longer you are with someone the more you know about them and the more tolerant and compassionate you become with regard to their behavior.

 

Wilbur is proud of his weight and thinks that one should put on weight as one gets older.

Lesson Learned –Whether you are a pig or a person, too much weight is going to kill you.

 

Wilbur hears that he’s going to be killed and he starts crying.

Lesson Learned –It’s okay to cry if you hear bad news.

 

Charlotte decides that she’s going to help Wilbur. She doesn’t know how she’s going to do it, but she’s going to try her best.  She gets Wilbur to calm down.

Lesson Learned –A good friend is priceless.

Bonus Lesson – A good friend will tell you when to stop.

Bonus Lesson – Even when things look bleak, never give up. There is always, always hope.

 

***

Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

Like what you read here? Consider subscribing to this blog so that you’ll never miss a post. And feel free to share with those who may need a little chicken love.

Leave a comment

Filed under Inspiration, Personal, Points to ponder, The Family

Lesson 1543 – Lessons Learned from Charlotte’s Web – Chapter 6

Charlotte’s Web Chapter 6 – Summer Days

Summer arrives at the barn and with it comes warm days, flowers, and the end of school.

When you don’t have to go to school, you discover that you have a fair amount of excess time on your hands. Fern goes to the barn often to quietly sit and visit Wilbur. In fact she goes so often that the barn mates accept her as an equal and lay calmly at her feet.

In July Mr. Zuckeman, along with Avery and Fern harvest the hay. They cut, rake, pitch and load the hay so that it can then be transferred to the barn ensuring a good supply of food year-round for the animals.

Songbirds are plentiful in the summer and you often hear the beautiful calls of white-throated sparrows, phoebe teeters and song sparrows.

There is always a lot for children to do in the summer – eat clover heads, have ice-cold drinks, and even taking apart the spit on a weed stalk to find the worm inside.

On one such idyllic day, the goose’s eggs begin to hatch. Charlotte is the first to see a gosling hatch and she makes an announcement to the barn congratulating the goose on the results of her effort and patience.

After finding out that there are seven eggs, Charlotte tells the goose that seven is a lucky number.

“Luck had nothing to do with this.” Said the goose. “It was good management and hard work.”

It turns out that in the beginning there were eight eggs, but one turned out to be a dud. The goose gives the egg to Templeton the rat with the warning that he could have the egg, but if he ever bothered the baby chicks, he’d be sorry. Even still, the goose parents were concerned about Templeton. “And with good reason. The rat had no morals, no conscience, no scruples, no consideration, no decency, no milk of rodent kindness, no compunctions, no higher feeling, no friendliness, no anything.”

Once the rat is gone with the rotten egg, the mama goose leads her newborns out of the nest and into the world. When Mr. Zuckerman comes to the barn with Wilbur’s super he spots the tiny baby geese. “Now isn’t that lovely!”

 

 

Chapter 6 Lessons Learned

 

Fern goes to the barn each day to quietly sit by Wilbur. After a while the other barn mates begin to accept her.

Lesson Learned – You’ll be more readily accepted if you quietly observe and be respectful to the group you’re with.

 

In July the farmer harvests the hay for his animals.

Lesson Learned – Remember that old fable about the ant and the grasshopper? This. Do your work now so that you can live off it later.

 

In the summer there is so much to do right outside your front door, you’d be busy for days on end.

Lesson Learned –Put down the phone and go for a walk.

 

Summer is the time for birds to be around.

Lesson Learned –Birds are lot more enjoyable when you know what species they are and what songs they sing. Buy a bird field guide and take it on that walk I suggested above.

 

When Charlotte sees the first goose egg hatch, she immediately makes an announcement to the barn.

Lesson Learned –It’s not easy giving birth. If someone you know has a baby, send them a HAND-WRITTEN card congratulating them on the results of their “efforts and persistence.”

 

Charlotte tells the goose that seven is a lucky number and the goose replies that the eggs hatching had nothing to do with luck.

Lesson learned – Good fortune often requires lots of dedicated hard work – there’s just no other way around it.

 

The geese give an eighth “dud” egg to the rat in return for him not bothering the chicks.

Lesson Learned –Sometimes you have to give a little in order to get a little.

 

Everyone in the barn knows that Templeton “had no morals, no conscience, no scruples, no consideration, no decency, no milk of rodent kindness, no compunctions, no higher feeling, no friendliness, no anything.”

Lesson Learned –Never vote for anyone like that. Please?

***

Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

Like what you read here? Consider subscribing to this blog so that you’ll never miss a post. And feel free to share with those who may need a little chicken love.

1 Comment

Filed under Inspiration, Personal, Points to ponder, The Family

Lesson 1541 – Lessons Learned from Charlotte’s Web – Chapter 5

Charlotte’s Web Chapter 5 – Charlotte

Wilbur spends a restless night, hungry and with much on his mind. When Templeton the rat wakes him up by gnawing on a board, Wilbur thinks “Why does he have to stay up all night, grinding his clashers and destroying people’s property?”

When the goose wakes him up by her chuckling, the goose doesn’t have much sympathy for Wilbur. “I have nothing on my mind, but I’ve too many things under my behind. Have you ever tried to sleep while sitting on right eggs?

The goose then goes on to tell Wilbur that sometimes on warm days she cheats by covering the eggs with straw so that she can get away for a bit.

Finally morning comes. “Oh, beautiful day, it is here at last! Today I shall find my friend!”

Wilbur calls out to the party who addressed him before he went to bed last night.

“Stop your nonsense, Wilbur!” said the oldest sheep. “If you have a new friend here, you are probably disturbing his rest; and the quickest way to spoil a friendship is to wake somebody up in the morning before he is ready. How can you be sure your friend is an early riser?”

Wilbur apologizes to the barn occupants. Breakfast is served by Lurvy and it’s time for Wibur’s nap when he hears “Salutations!” Wilbur asks what that word means and the tiny voice explains.

“Salutations!” calls out Wilbur.

Wilbur soon discovers that the voice belongs to Charlotte, a very beautiful, near-sighted spider. “I wish I could see you, Wilbur, as clearly as you see me.” To prove that her sight didn’t get in her way, she wraps up a fly who had gotten tangled in her web. “He’ll make a perfect breakfast for me.”

“You eat flies?”

Charlotte explains that yes, she eats flies and all sorts of other things that happen to fly into her web.She can’t help it, Charlotte tells Wilbur, it’s just the way she is.

When Wilbur calls her out for such a bloodthirsty way of eating, Charlotte tells Wibur he’s one to talk. She explains that the farmer brings his food to him. He doesn’t have to work for it or figure out how to get it. He only has to be present. Charlotte has to work to survive but she’s okay with it bcause she knows that in her eating of bugs, she is also helping to keep the world population of them down.”

It’s all good.

The goose looks on from her nest. “Poor Wilbur” she thinks. He doesn’t know what is ahead for him at Christmas time.

Charlotte goes to eat her fly and Wilbur takes a nap. As he falls asleep he wonders if he can be friends with somone hwo is so “fierce, brutal, schemeing, bloodthirsty – everythings I don’t like. How can I learn to like her, even though she is pretty and of course, clever?”

Turns out he will.

Chapter 5 Lessons Learned

 

Wilbur can’t sleep because he has too much on his mind.

Lesson Learned – It’s important to calm and clear your mind before you go to sleep. What is is and whatever it is, it can certainly wait until morning. .

 

The goose admits that sometimes she “cheats” and gets time away from her eggs.

Lesson Learned –All moms need a break once in a while.

 

Finally morning arrives and Wilbur is excited to see what will happen.

Lesson Learned – Greet each day enthusiastically and be grateful for the opportunities it brings.

 

Wilbur calls out to his new friend early in the morning which bothers everyone else in the barn.

Lesson Learned –I’m going with my mother’s rule when I was growing up on this one – don’t call anyone’s house before 9 a.m..

 

Charlotte teaches Wilbur what the word “saluatations” means.

Lesson learned – An important part of friendship is what we can learn and teach each other.

 

Charlotte is near-sighted, but she can still weave a mean web.

Lesson Learned – Have a weakness? Then figure out what you do well and do that.

 

Wilbur is dismayed that Charlotte catches and eats flies.

Lesson Learned –Hey, we all gotta do what we need to do, in order to get by.

 

We learn that something bad is going to happen to Wilbur at Christmas.

Lesson Learned – Sometimes ignorance is bliss.

 

Wilbur wonders if he can be friends with a formidable female like Charlotte?

Lesson Learned – Trust me on this one, strong females can be very, very good friends.

 

***

Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

Like what you read here? Consider subscribing to this blog so that you’ll never miss a post. And feel free to share with those who may need a little chicken love.

Leave a comment

Filed under Inspiration, Personal, Points to ponder, The Family

Lesson 1534 – Lessons Learned from Charlotte’s Web – Chapter 4

Charlotte’s Web Chapter 4 Loneliness

The next day (after Wilbur’s unexpected burst of freedom) was rainy, dark and dreary. The rain upset Wilbur’s plan to go out and dig a new hole in his yard.

After all Wilbur has his entire day planned out. Breakfast, napping, digging holes, talking to his friend Templeton the rat, and even standing still from three to four where he would think of what it was like to be alive, and to wait for Fern.

But the rain put a damper on those plans. Wilbur couldn’t find Templeton and the little pig began to feel lonely.

“One day just like another,” he groaned.  “I’m very young, I have no real friend here in the barn, it’s going to rain all morning and all afternoon, and Fern won’t come in such bad weather. Oh honestly!”

And when Wilbur is given his breakfast, he realizes that he doesn’t want food, he wants love. He wanted a fiend.

Wilbur ties to make friends with the mother goose, but she is too busy taking care of her clutch of eggs.

Next he tries one of the lambs who replies that she will certainly not play with a pig. “Pigs mean less than nothing to me.”

Wilbur goes to sit down. He sees Templeton and asks the rat if he would like to play?

“Play?” replies Templeton “I hardly know the meaning of the word.”

Friendless, dejected and hungry, Wilbur throws himself down in the manure and sobs.

Lurvey reports that something is wrong with the pig

“Give him two spoonful’s of Sulphur and a little molasses.”

Day turns to night and Wilbur doesn’t know if he can endure the awful loneliness anymore.

In the darkness, he hears a small voice “Do you want a friend Wilbur?” it said. “I’ll be a friend to you. I’ve watched you all day and I like you.

 

Chapter 4 Lessons Learned

 

Even if you have plans for the day, unexpected things can still happen which will mess things up.

Lesson Learned – Always have a plan B.

 

Sometimes you just have to endure the rain to get to the sunshine on the other side.

Lesson Learned – After every dark night, there is a dawn.

 

Wilbur has an obsessive relationship with his food. He knows the textures, the different flavors.  It’s fair to say that he lives for food, but because he is so lonely, Wilbur can’t eat. Clever pig.

Lesson Learned – It’s true, sometimes you don’t want food, you want love.

 

Wilbur is so lonely that he cries, feels dejected, and wants to give up.

Lesson learned – Loneliness is very, very  painful. If you know someone who is lonely, reach out to them. Today.

 

Wilbur tries to make friend with the goose, a lamb, and a rat. None of them want to be his friend.

Lesson Learned – there are times when you are better off not being friends with some people.

 

Something appears to be wrong with the pig, so he is given medication.

Lesson Learned – it’s important to figure out *why* you are in pain or are sick. Medication can’t fix everything.

Bonus lesson – If you’re hurting, try to tell someone so they will know best how to help. Don’t have someone give you tummy medication for a broken leg.

 

Wilbur hears a small voice in the darkness telling him that he has a friend.

Lesson Learned – Never, ever, ever give up.

 

***

Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

Like what you read here? Consider subscribing to this blog so that you’ll never miss a post. And feel free to share with those who may need a little chicken love.

Leave a comment

Filed under Inspiration, Personal, Points to ponder, The Family

Lesson 1519 – Not for the faint of heart

I had wanted to start the week off writing about my recent trip to Spain and France (as you can probably figure out, I came home with some great stories) or continue with another chapter of Charlotte’s Web. But something happened the night I came back from my trip that takes precedence.

My flock was hit and it was hit hard by a vicious predator.

The night I got back, while I slept (I took some sleeping medication in order to overcome the jet lag) *something* got into our coop. Five chickens were killed outright and four were left wounded. By the afternoon two more had died. That left me with  two remaining ones that I thought had a chance.

The damage was frightening. Heads were crushed, beaks were pulled out. On two birds the bellies were opened and the innards eaten. It was a literal blood bath. Continue reading

4 Comments

Filed under Inspiration, Personal, Points to ponder, The Family

Lesson 1518 – Lessons Learned from Charlotte’s Web – Chapter 3

In Chapter 3 of Charlotte’s Web Wilbur the pig goes to live in the Zuckerman’s barn. At first it is lovely, warm and holds many new experiences. It’s got ladders, pitch forks, monkey wrenches, scythes, lawnmowers, snow shovels, ax handles, milk pails, water buckets, empty grain sacks, and rust rat traps. But soon the barn becomes familiar and Wilbur gets bored with his confinement.

Fern comes to visit Wilbur when she can, but Wilbur wants more. He realizes that he never has any fun – no walks, no rides, no swims. Bored, Wilbur says to himself “There’s never anything to do around here.”

“I’m less than two months old and I’m tired of living,” he adds.

A goose overhears him, tells him about a loose board in the fence and convinces Wilbur to escape. When Wilbur sticks his head through the hole in the fence the goose asks him “how does it feel to be free?”

Wilbur escapes into the yard where Mrs. Zuckerman sees him and alerts Mr. Zuckerman and Lurvy that the pig is loose. They chase Wilbur who gets flustered and confused.

Finally, Mr. Zuckerman holds out a pail of slops toward Wilbur. He smells the warm milk, potato skins, wheat middlings, Kellogg’s Corn Flakes, and a popover left from the Zuckerman breakfast.

“”No, no, no, cries the goose. “You’ll miss your freedom.”

But Wilbur follows Mr. Zuckerman back to the barn where he is rewarded with the slops.

“I’m really too young to out into the world alone,” he thought as he lay down.

 

Chapter 3 Lessons Learned

Look at all the wonderful things in Wilbur’s new home!  Some things are used in the summer, some in the winter, and some every day.

Lesson learned –Look around, there are a lot of things about home to love.

 

Wilbur becomes complacent in his new surroundings and gets bored, but ulatimately if he would just listen to himself, he’d know what to do.

Lesson learned – if you want to have fun– go on a walk, go for a ride or a swim

 

Wilbur wonders what it would feel like to be free and so he pushes his way through the hole in the fence.

Lesson learned – If you want to know what it feels like to be free, then you need to escape from where you are.

 

When Wilbur escapes, Mrs. Zuckerman sounds the alarm.

Lesson learned – Be careful, when you try new things, news travels fast.

 

It takes a bucket of slops to get Wilbur back into his pen.

Lesson learned – never underestimate the power of appealing to someone’s stomach

 

Having a full tummy and tired from his adventures, Wilbur takes a nap.

Lesson learned – there’s no place like home.

Bonus lesson learned – Remember, all moms have eyes in the back of their heads, if you’re doing something wrong, they’ll catch you.

 

***

Wendy Thomas writes about the lessons learned while raising children and chickens in New Hampshire. Contact her at Wendy@SimpleThrift.com

Also, join me on Facebook to find out more about the flock (children and chickens) and see some pretty funny chicken jokes, photos of tiny houses, and even a recipe or two.

Like what you read here? Consider subscribing to this blog so that you’ll never miss a post. And feel free to share with those who may need a little chicken love.

Leave a comment

Filed under Inspiration, Personal, Points to ponder, The Family