John Ruskin, after his farce marriage to the future wife of Millais, went home to his father and mother. They were severe religionists, but the son submitted to the discipline of that home. On the Sabbath this man of middle age, now famous in Europe, acceded to the rule that his beloved Turners should be screened. He could look at them for six days. What mattered one day, if it pleased his parents to have them veiled on the Sabbath?
His father died at seventy-nine and was buried in Shirley Church, Surrey. His son inscribed upon his tomb this remarkable epitaph: "He was an entirely honest merchant, and his memory is to all who keep it dear and helpful. His son, whom he loved to the uttermost, and taught to speak truth, says this of him!" Seven years later, at the great age of ninety, the mother followed the father, and what Ruskin wrote for her was but the reflection of his life: "Nor was dearer
earth ever returned to earth, nor purer life recorded in heaven."
Daniel Webster was the son of godly Captain Ebenezer Webster. On the New Hampshire hills the father toiled for the sake of his children. On a hot day, in the last year of Washington's administration, Webster tells us, he was making hay with his father when a man rode by who had just been elected to Congress. When he was gone, Ebenezer Webster called his son Daniel and said, "My son, that is a worthy man. He is a member of Congress. He goes to Philadelphia and gets six dollars a day, while I toil here. It is because he had an education, which I never had. If I had had his early education, I should have been in Philadelphia in his place. I came near to it, as it is, but I missed it, and now I must work here." Webster relates how he, the boy, cried when his father said this. His father then went on to say, "My child, it is of no importance to me. I could not give your elder brothers the advantage of knowledge, but I can do something for you. Exert yourself and prove your opportunities, and when I am gone you will not need to go through the hardships which I have undergone, and which have made me old before my time."
When we stand in the hall of Congress and listen to the great speeches of Daniel Webster, we should remember that godly father who sacrificed for his son.
At Blantyre, near Glasgow, is the quiet acre where sleep the father and mother of David Livingstone. The words which he prepared for that grave are words which every one of us might take to heart: "To show the resting place of Neil Livingstone and Agnes Hunter, his wife, and to express the thankfulness to God of their children, John, David, Janet, Charles, and Agnes, for poor and pious parents."
A friend insisted that he change the wording to "poor but pious"; but he kept it as he had written it, "poor and pious," a tribute of love to parents who were both poor and pious.
"Now, then, where's the fare for that boy?" asked the conductor in the crowded bus.
"He's only three years old," replied the child's father.
"Three years! Go on—look at him!" snorted the conductor. "He's six at least."
The father leaned over and gazed earnestly at the boy's face. Then he turned to the conductor: "Can I help it if he worries?" he asked.
A scientist of great intellectual brilliance confided to a colleague that he had great hopes for his son, who had just won a scholarship to college. "It's amazing," the scientist said, "the way that boy progressed, once he got started. It's hard to believe, but it took him two years just to learn the alphabet."
The colleague looked stunned. "Why, I've never heard of such a thing," he said. "You must have been terribly depressed. How old was the poor lad when he finally did learn the alphabet?"
This time the scientist looked surprised. "I told you it took him two years," he said. "Obviously, he was two."—Wall Street Journal
There is no sure way to guarantee that your child will grow up to be the kind of person you would like him to be. The most likely way is for you to be the kind of person you would like him to be.—Phi Delta Kappan
After a day of complete harassment, the mother shook her finger at her small son. "All right, Junior," she shouted, "do anything you damn well please! Now let me see you disobey THAT!"—Lee J. Borden
"Daddy," said the small boy, "where did I come from?"
The father, who had been dreading the day the question would be asked, launched into a long contrived explanation on the facts of life. The boy listened attentively. At last the father concluded, "So now you know—but just as a matter of curiosity, how did you happen to ask?"
"Nothing special, Dad," said the son, "the new boy at our school said he came from Chicago and I was wondering where I came from."—Santa Fe Magazine
Advice to parents: Don't be hard on the children when they fight; they may be just playing house.—Laugh Book
Parents registering their children for the fall term at a Detroit kindergarten were asked pertinent questions about the children's background. In the blank marked "Language spoken in the home," one mother proudly replied, "Nice."—Marjorie Grace Buchanan
"How far is your daughter with the singing lessons she's getting at home?" someone asked Mr. Gray.
"Oh, doing all right," said Mr. Gray. "Today was the first time I took the cotton out of my ears."—PAL
Behind a teenager's "customized" car usually is found a pauperized Pop.—J. W. Pelkie, Quote
Yes sir, I took my boy a-fishin' Sure, his mother told me to, but besides, I kind of done it 'cause it seemed the thing to do.
It's a heap more fun a-fishin' when I'm out there with my son, 'cause we really get acquainted through a little fishin' fun.
When my creel of life is empty, and my life's line sort of worn, I shall always keep rememberin' that first early summer morn when I took my boy a-fishin', and I really learned the joy that comes to every father when he really knows his boy.—Outdoor Nebraska, Friendly Chat