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THE GOOD STUFF   ..Special BroadCast...
Copyright © 2003 by Marcy Koltun-Crilley.
All Rights Reserved.

That's me

Mele Kalikimaka !

That's Merry Christmas in Hawaiian!

The Holidays different things for different

For me, I always feel strong appreciation.

If you could give someone you love any gift,
What would that be ?

How would that feel for them and you?

This is one of my favorite stories.

You may need a hankie or seven,
and , it's Ok,
it has an uplifting ending!


Mrs. Thompson was an elementary school teacher.

And as she stood in front of her 5th grade
class on the very first day of school, she told
the children a lie.

Like most teachers, she looked at her
students and said that she loved them all the same.
But that was impossible, because there in the front
row, slumped in his seat, was a little boy named Teddy.

Mrs. Thompson had watched Teddy the year before
and  noticed that he didn't play well with the
other children,  that his clothes were messy and
that he constantly needed a  bath.

And Teddy could be unpleasant. It got to the
point where  Mrs. Thompson would actually take
delight in marking  his papers with a broad red
pen, making bold X's and then putting a big "F"
at the top of his papers.

At the school where Mrs. Thompson taught,
she was required to review each child's past
records and she put Teddy's off until last.

However, when she reviewed his file,
she was in for a surprise.

Teddy's first grade teacher wrote:

"Teddy is a bright child with a ready laugh.

He does his work neatly and has good
manners...he is a joy to be around."

His second grade teacher wrote,

"Teddy is an excellent student,
well-liked by his classmates, but he is
troubled because his mother has a terminal
illness and life at home must be a struggle."

His third grade teacher wrote,

"His mother's death has been hard on him.

He tries to do his best but his father doesn't
show much interest and his home life will soon
affect him if  some steps aren't taken."

Teddy's fourth grade teacher wrote,

"Teddy is withdrawn and doesn't show much
interest in school.

He doesn't have many friends and sometimes
sleeps in class."

By now, Mrs. Thompson realized the problem and
she  was  ashamed of herself.

She felt even worse when her students  brought
her Christmas presents, wrapped in  beautiful
ribbons and bright paper, except for Teddy's.

His present was clumsily wrapped in the heavy,
brown paper that he got from a grocery bag.

Mrs. Thompson took pains to open it in the
middle of the other presents. Some of the
children started to laugh when she found a
rhinestone bracelet with some of the stones
missing and a bottle that was one quarter
full of perfume.

She stifled the children's laughter when she
exclaimed how pretty the bracelet was, putting
it on, and dabbing some of the perfume on her wrist.

Teddy stayed after school that day just long
enough to say, "Mrs. Thompson, today you smelled
just like my Mom used to."

After the children left she cried for at least
an  hour.

On that very day, she quit teaching
reading, and writing, and arithmetic.

Instead, she began to teach children.

Mrs. Thompson paid particular attention to

As she worked with him, his mind seemed to come

The more she encouraged him, the faster he

By the end of the year, Teddy had become one of
the  smartest  children in the the class and,
despite her lie that she would love all the
children same, Teddy became one of her
"teacher's  pets."

A year later, she found a note under her door,
from  Teddy, telling her that she was still
the best teacher he  ever had in his whole life.

Six years went by before she got another note
from  Teddy.

He then wrote that he had finished high school,
second in his class, and she was still the best
teacher he ever had in his whole life.

Four years after that, she got another letter,
saying that while  things had been tough at times,
he'd stayed in school,had stuck with it, and would
soon graduate from college with the highest of honors.

He assured Mrs.Thompson that she was still the best
and favorite teacher he ever had in  his whole life.

Then four more years passed and yet another
letter  came.

This time he explained that after he got his
bachelor's degree,he decided to go a little further.

The letter explained that she was still the best and
favorite teacher he ever had.

But now his name was a little longer. The letter was
signed, Theodore F. Stollard, M.D.

The story doesn't end there.

You see, there was yet another letter that

Teddy said he'd met this girl and was going to
be  married.

He explained that his father had died a couple
of years ago and he was wondering if Mrs.
Thompson  might agree to sit in the place at the
wedding that was  usually reserved for the mother
of the groom.

Of course, Mrs. Thompson, did.

And guess what?

She wore that bracelet, the one with several
rhinestones missing.

And she made sure she was wearing the perfume
that Teddy remembered his mother wearing on
their last Christmas together.

They hugged each other, and Teddy whispered in
Mrs. Thompson's ear,

"Thank you, Mrs. Thompson, for believing in me.

Thank you so much for making me feel important
and showing me that I could make a difference."

Mrs. Thompson, with tears in her eyes, whispered

She said, "Teddy, you have it all wrong.

You were the one who taught me that I could make
a  difference.

I didn't know how to teach until I met you."

Never underestimate the Power of Purpose
and BELiving in others

Yesterday is history

Tomorrow is a mystery

Today is a gift

That's why it's called the 'Present'


Again , I ask you:

If you could give someone you love any gift,
What would that be ?

How would that feel for them and you?

How can you leverage your personal influence for the
good of another?

I would love to hear your answer!

Mele Kalikimaka



"Life is not measured by the number
of breaths we take, but by the moments
that take our breath away. "



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Marcy Koltun-Crilley
Kihei, HI 96753

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