Once upon a time on a beautiful spring day, a purple princess played happily in her garden with her ball. The princess could never decide which she liked best: the garden or the gold & purple ball.
In the garden, her purple roses had a sweet fragrance.
But her gold & purple ball was glittery.
In the garden, her water lilies were lovely.
But her gold & purple ball shimmered in the sunlight.
In the garden, her purple carnations were perfect for wearing with her bows.
But her gold & purple ball was ever so much fun. It could be thrown way high into the blue sky!
So on this particular day, the purple princess took a deep breath of the flower-fragranced air in her garden. “Ah, how delightfully sweet!” she exclaimed. “I am so very, very blessed!”
She looked at her shimmering ball. “And I’m blessed to have such a beautiful ball!” The princess then skipped playfully and threw her ball as high as she could. The ball soared high into the air, glistening in the sunlight!
The princess was so excited that she started jumping up and down and clapping, just watching the ball go so high. Then, as all balls will do eventually, the ball started falling… falling… falling back down. But the princess was so caught up in jumping and clapping that she missed catching the gold & purple orb on its descent.
And so the ball fell and went “splosh!” right into the lily pond!
Now lily ponds have murky water that grow beautiful water lilies. But this is not the kind of water in which a princess would want to swim! It had all this green, slimy stuff floating on top of the water. “Yuck!” she cried.
The princess peered into the pond but she couldn’t see her gold & purple ball. “Oh, how will I ever get back my favorite ball?”
Just then a Striped-Belly Green Frog leaped out of the murky water.
The princess gasped in surprise. The frog plopped down right next to her. “Yuck!” cried the purple princess. “My ball is stuck in the muck and now here comes a frog who is also ‘yuck’!”
The Green Frog stared at the crying girl. “My name is not “Yuck”. My name is Friendly Phil – short for Philemon – Friendly Phil the Frog. What’s seems to be the problem?”
The girl kept crying as she spoke. “I don’t care who you are – you are ‘yuck’ – as in nasty and ugly.”
Phil just smiled. “Well, that’s not a very princess-like thing to say! You are a princess aren’t you?”
The princess replied, “Of course, I’m a princess! Can’t you tell by my tiara?!”
“But,” the Green Frog answered, “a tiara doesn’t make a princess. A princess should positively act like a princess.”
The girl fumed. “I suppose you know how a princess should act?! Don’t you know that I just lost my very favorite ball, maybe even my most favorite thing in the whole world?”
“Oh,” Phil croaked, “that must be what disturbed the pond while I was swimming. I thought it was a meteor or something falling from the sky!”
“Well,” the princess explained, “it did fall from the sky. I threw it too high… and now my ball is gone. I would give anything to have it back.”
Phil was shocked. “Now that’s positively not a very smart thing to say, dear princess. Would you really, truly give anything?”
The princess nodded. “Yes, really and truly, anything.”
The Green Frog asked, “Would you give away your pretty gold bracelet?”
The princess took off the bracelet and offered it to the frog. “Yes, yes. I really would. Here… you can have it … if you can get my gold & purple ball.”
The frog would not take it. “Who gave you this beautiful bracelet? It looks pretty special.”
“It is.” The princess weeped. “It was a special gift from my late parents… Uh… I can’t give this away!”
Phil stated, “You should be very careful what you say, princess! Don’t make promises you can’t keep.”
The princess stopped crying. “You are very wise, Phil. You’re being so kind to me. I’m so sorry I was unkind to you – calling you ‘Yuck!’ Will you forgive me, please?”
Replied the frog, “No problem. Of course, I forgive you.” He was really too kind to hold a grudge.
“So,” asked the princess, “Now what do you want… if you get my ball back for me?”
“Nothing,” replied Phil.
The princess looked downcast. “Nothing? You mean you won’t get my ball? But I can’t get it myself. The water really is yuck … at least to me. But you’re a frog. Don’t you like swimming around in all that murky water?”
Phil chuckled. “Oh, the water is positively fantastic ….”
“Then why won’t you get my ball for me?” cried the princess.
“Don’t fret!” exclaimed Phil. “I never said I wouldn’t get your ball! But you don’t need to give me anything.”
The princess looked confused. “What? You don’t want anything?”
Phil smiled. “It’s a simple thing for me to get your ball. I’m not going to make you give me anything for doing such a simple act of kindness! Wouldn’t you do the same for me?”
“Well,” mused the princess, “I suppose I would, if I could, and if it didn’t require jumping into a dirty old pond!”
Phil laughed at the thought. “We just all need to help one another. Now, I had better fetch your ball before it sinks down too deep in the mud! I’ll be right back!” With that, he leaped into the slimy pond.
The princess peered down after him but she couldn’t see a thing! “Oh, I do hope he can get my ball,” she prayed.
Then suddenly the Green Frog jumped high up out of the water and landed on a lily pad. His hand held the treasured gold & purple ball!
“My ball!” exclaimed the princess.
Phil jumped on dry ground and handed the princess her ball.
The princess was thankful. “Merci beaucoup! Thank you! Oh, Phil, you are a true friend, really you are!”
Phil beamed, “You’re quite welcome! After all, that’s what neighbors are for, helping one another, right?”
The princess smiled. “Say, friend, maybe, you would like to play ball with me?”
“Positively!” exclaimed the frog. “But try not to throw it in the pond!”
“Okay,” the princess threw the ball as fast as she could. “Catch this one!” Phil, with a leap to the side, caught it easily.
So the two hopped happily around the garden playing ball. Hearing their laughter, soon many friends in the neighborhood came by and joined in the fun and frolic.
Afterwards, they all sat down to rest. The princess shared blueberries from her basket with all.
“Everyone listen, please,” the princess said as they were eating. “Today, my new friend Phil and you all helped me to realize something very important! I could never decide which I liked best, my gold & purple ball or my garden full of flowers. That was something I often pondered. But now it is no longer a question.”
“Well,” said Buttons the Bunny, “It must be that you decided you like your gold & purple ball best… after all the fun we had with it.”
“No,” said the princess. “That’s not what I realized.”
“Then,” queried Squiggles the Squirrel, “you decided that you like your garden best?”
“No!” replied the princess. “That is not what I realized, either. What I really like best is not a thing at all! Why I have a much, much greater blessing! I am blessed with friends and family who care about me.” The princess gave a big hug to each of her friends.
When she reached Friendly Phil, she noticed the golden heart on the frog’s chest. “You deserve that heart of gold for you have a true heart of gold!” The purple princess then surprised the frog with a sweet little kiss on his green chubby cheek!
The hippity-hoppity-happity End.
“A friend loves at all times.”
- If you had someone call you “yuck” would your first response be to get angry? That would be quite normal but we should try to be better than “normal”. We should practice “self-control” which is simply controlling yourself. A princess or a prince should practice “self-control”.
- Other than being with friends and family, which would you like more: the garden or the ball?
- How can you help others?
- How can you be a friend who loves at all times?