One thing that really brought back such strong memories for me this week was a picture Kay posted of my childhood hero Pippi Longstocking. Sometimes when we go to lead our grown-up lives, we forget to stay connected to the child-like side that once made us so content--and though I left Pippi behind me long ago, Kay's posts brought back such a flood of memories that I felt compelled to write a little tribute to Pippi in this week's blog
There were times in my childhood that I just wanted to escape. Occasionally a trip on my bicycle to faraway corners of Carson, the city where I grew up, would do it for me, but there were times that I just needed to pretend to be somewhere else or someone else. Pippi was that person for me. She was everything that I wasn't at the time, and her life seemed so magical--who wouldn't want to live in her own mansion without anyone to tell her what to eat, when to go to bed, or how she should spend her days. Pippi handled adults in a way that was admirable from a child's point of view, and I wanted to be just like her. Here are some of the lessons I learned from Pippi:
1) Pippi never worried about things that she couldn't control. Her mom was in heaven and her dad was a captain lost at sea, but instead of worrying about when her dad would come back to her, she lived each day to the fullest awaiting her father's return. While her best friend Annika spends time worrying about little things like catching cold from being wet, Pippi, being more practical, points out that no one has ever died from being cold. My lesson learned: Focus on what you can control and make the most of what you cannot control.
2) Pippi found ways to make even the most boring chores and tasks exciting. She multi-tasked by taking a bath in her clothes on laundry day and my all time favorite was when Pippi strapped brushes on her feet and skated around her floor instead of just mopping it. I must admit that I tried this technique on more than one occasion--fun, but not as comfortable as it looked in the movie. My lesson learned: If you can't just change your attitude about something like eating healthier or exercising, make it fun and more enjoyable. Play outside when you exercise or take the time to make healthier food more delicious--Hungry Girl is my go-to site for ideas to make my favorite dishes healthier.
3) Pippi is always kind to people unless they prove that they don't deserve this kindness. Pippi's heart is pure when she first meets both adults and children alike. She shares whatever she has without expecting anything in return. She shares her pirate gold with anyone that needs it and things only go crazy when these adults try to steal her property or attempt to put her in an orphanage. My lesson learned: Have an open heart and be kind to others, but do not waste your time on people who don't deserve your kindness.
4) Pippi goes out of her way to to do kind and generous acts for others. There is a great scene in one of the Pippi movies where she takes the orphans out and does a little parade through the town with them and feeds them all the ice cream and goodies they can possibly indulge in. I know, not healthy, but those kids felt so special. We are all so busy, but try to find time to do something kind for someone else. Volunteer at a food pantry, do something nice for a neighbor, or even send a card or email to someone to remind them they are loved. All these things are small gestures but much appreciated by the recipients. My lesson learned: Be generous with your love, your time, and with doing nice things for others. I learned long ago that giving feels so much better than receiving, but you must allow others to give to you so they can have the same satisfied feelings.
5) Pippi is super strong for a little girl. I used to love the fact that Pippi could lift her horse, Old Man, over her head or escort grown adults out of her house by lifting them from the back of their pants and tossing them out. I know I wish I had been able to protect myself like Pippi was capable of doing. Even now I strive to be stronger, but this is an area of growth for me. My lesson learned: While I don't need to lift horses or toss adults out of my house, as I get older I need to build up my strength so that I can be stable and flexible to avoid injuries and to protect yourself if you ever need to. Strength Training is important to add to your training routine.
I hope you, too, can find some of the joy that I have experienced reliving the world of Pippi this week. Sometimes I just need to let go of my adult seriousness and remember what it was like to be a child. Today I was able to introduce my youngest son Eoin to the world of Pippi and I hope that he has the same joyful memories as I do of this amazing young girl. Thank you Pippi!
Pippi Trivia: Pippi's full name is Pippilotta Delicatessa Windowshade Mackrelmint Ephraim's Daughter Longstocking.
Article sharing the reasons Pippi is the ultimate Powerful woman
Pippi Longstocking original movie collection boxed set on Amazon