Grandpa Jake heard an angry shout from Tristan. “Troy broke my fire
“I stepped on it by accident,” said Troy. “I am sorry, Tristan. Can we fix
it, Grandpa Jake?”
“Let me have a look at it,” said Grandpa Jake. “I’m sure there’s
something we can do.”
“I don’t want Troy playing with my toys anymore!” said Tristan.
“Now, Tristan,” said Grandpa Jake, “Troy said he was sorry.”
“It’s hard to forgive Troy, even though he is my friend,” said Tristan.
“Did I ever tell you the story of Crispin the dinosaur?” asked Grandpa Jake.
“No, you did not,” said Tristan.
“Did his friend break his fire engine too?” asked Troy.
“Not exactly. But one day he made a mistake that made his sister very unhappy.
Come to the workshop with me. I will work on fixing this fire engine, and will tell
you about Crispin’s ‘Operation Oops.’”
It had been raining for many days. Finally, one morning…
“The sun is out!” said Crispin with delight. “It’s a great day for play.”
Crispin ran outside to find his friends.
“Wesley!” called Crispin.
The two dinosaur friends were happy to see each other.
“Where is Suds?” asked Crispin.
“Let’s see if she wants to play,” said Wesley.
“I have the perfect game for us to play—capture the flag!” said Crispin as he
pulled out a flag.
“Great! Let’s play!” said Wesley.
Crispin and Suds
eyes and began
to count slowly.
“One, two, three,
Wesley hid the
flag in a hollow
“Ready or not,
here we come!”
called out Crispin
Crispin and Suds looked everywhere. Finally Suds passed by the hollow log and
looked inside. “I found it!” she yelled.
“I’ll catch you!” shouted Wesley, as he chased Suds.
Crispin snatched the flag and dashed off. “I got the flag!”
“I am going to catch you before you reach your base!” said Wesley.
While the three friends were playing, Crispin’s sister, Dixie, was tending the flowers
that she had so carefully planted. Dixie heard the sound of running feet and loud
laughter, as Crispin and Wesley dashed out from behind some trees, heading
straight toward her garden.
“No! Stop!” cried Dixie as she held out her hands. But it was too late.
“My flowers! My garden! All my hard work.” Dixie burst into tears.
“What happened to the fence that goes around your garden?” asked Crispin.
Dixie cried even louder. “The ground was soft and muddy from the rain, and so the
fence fell over.”
Crispin felt very bad. “I am sorry about your garden, Dixie.”
“Maybe we can help fix Dixie’s garden,” said Suds.
“Yes! We can help you put your fence back up, so this won’t happen again,”
Dixie thought for a moment and said, “I forgive you, Crispin, and I’d be happy
to have your help fixing my garden.”
The four friends set to work, and in no time at all the garden looked as good as
“Just like this fire engine,” said Grandpa Jake as he rolled the fire
engine to Tristan.
“Thank you, Grandpa,” said Tristan.
“Troy, I forgive you for breaking my fire
engine, and I am sorry I was mad at
you,” said Tristan.
“And I’m sorry I broke it. I will
be more careful next time,”
Everyone makes mistakes. We all need forgiveness at some time or
another. To forgive, even when it’s difficult, is a wonderful thing and
one of the best ways to show love and friendship.
my oh my,
“Hi, Grandpa Jake,” Tristan said, as he stepped onto the porch. “I
came to play down here. There is no place to play in my room.”
“I can understand why there was no space. Your room is so messy
that I could hardly open the door,” said Grandpa Jake.
“Mom will clean it up later. I think she likes to clean things up,”
“Picking up after you can sometimes be a lot of work for your
mother,” said Grandpa Jake.
“Tristan, did you know that learning to clean up after yourself and being
responsible is part of growing up?”
“But I don’t like cleaning up. It takes me so long,” said Tristan.
“I have a story that will help you understand the importance of being tidy and
responsible,” said Grandpa Jake. “What do you say you clean up your toys
“Okay, I’ll do it,” replied Tristan.
One day at school, Mr. Nuggin made an exciting announcement.
“Good morning, class! I hope you all had a good weekend.”
“Yes, we did!” chorused the class.
“I’ve given each of your parents a chart to fill out this week. Each time you are
responsible in your jobs, have good manners, and stay neat and tidy, they’ll
mark it on the chart.
“At the end of the week, the three dinosaurs that have the best marks will
each get a prize.”
Mr. Nuggin held up three prizes: a ball, a painting kit, and a red wagon.
Crispin’s eyes lit up when he saw the wagon. “Wow! That’s what I want!”
As he made his way home
from school, Crispin was so lost
in thought about
the wagon that he didn’t
realize that he was walking
through mud puddles.
“Crispin! What is this?” asked Crispin’s
mother as he walked into the house.
“Oh, it’s just mud, Mother. I’ll wash it
“But what about the
chart Mr. Nuggin made? I can’t give
you a good mark if you don’t clean
up right away when you’re all dirty.”
The week went on and Crispin could not seem to keep himself clean.
Crispin’s room was a mess, his toys were scattered everywhere, and he was
not diligent in his jobs.
On the last day of the contest,
Crispin was late. The prizes had
already been given away … all
except one, the red wagon!
“And the wagon goes to Wesley! He
was neat, tidy, and responsible all
week,” said Mr. Nuggin.
It was a very sad little Crispin that made his way home that afternoon.
“I didn’t win a prize at school today,” said Crispin to his mother.
“I’m sorry, Crispin. I wasn’t able to put any good marks on your chart. I tried to
encourage you to pick up after yourself and keep clean, but you didn’t pay any
“But, Mother, it’s so hard to be clean and neat,” said Crispin.
“It is difficult, I know, but it’s part of growing up, and it does get easier the more you
do it,” replied his mother.
“I have an idea,” his mother continued. “Why don’t we try again with the chart Mr.
“I’d like that, Mom! I’ll do my best!” exclaimed Crispin.
Crispin did his best to stay neat and tidy. Then one evening his father brought home
a surprise—a shiny red wagon! He gave it to Crispin as a reward for doing his jobs
faithfully, keeping clean, and having good manners. Crispin was very happy! The
wagon was just like the one Wesley had won.
“I want to do my best to be more neat and
tidy, Grandpa,” said Tristan.
“That’s wonderful!” exclaimed Grandpa
Jake. “I’m sure it will make your mother very
“I’ll go upstairs and clean my bedroom
now,” said Tristan. “Mom will be surprised!”
When people see that you are responsible, they are more likely to
trust you with things, because they know you’ll take good care of