A wooden train that wouldn’t stop…

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child with train set

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Stories that we often remember the most or the easiest, are those experienced by our parents or grandparents. The ones told to us in front of a cozy fire place. With red ears, cuddled up, waiting for the next words to come from their lips. So the same counts for a particular story passed down to me this blistering wintery season.

It’s a story that has stuck with me for some time now and has caused me to re-think what being eco-conscience actually means! We often believe that buying the (usually more expensive) “green” products, a more fuel efficient car or a better insulated home is what makes considerable impact to our environment. Those things accompanied by shorter showers, better planned vacations and a power saving setting on our 24″ computer screen that makes us feel so much better and gives us an idea that, yes we are actually making a difference.

However, what I came to realize is that we, “the new world green thinkers”, those that are pushing to make a difference, have come from parents or grandparents that contributed far less damage to our environment than we do on a daily basis.

The story passed down this Winter season was one that taught me so many things. It started three weeks before one Christmas season a long time ago. A young boy, the eldest of six and living in a small home in Holland was missing his wooden train. You would think, “Big deal! One toy? Go play with all the other toys you have kid.” Unfortunately this really was the only toy the boy had. Although we would quickly feel sorry for this young boy, not to worry, he was quite happy with his only train. His beautiful wooden toy with seven perfect wagons. His imagination would take him from place to place. Over hills, through mountains, you name it and he had been there!

He looked high and low, under all the couches, in the kitchen, under the chairs, in all the cupboards. He even went as far as looking outside, but there was no train to be found. All he could think about was that soon it would be Christmas, and maybe, just maybe, he would receive a toy that would replace his missing train. Christmas morning came, and down he ran, ripping the newspaper of his toy, and WOW there was a beautiful new train, with fresh red paint and eight perfect wagons! His father, with fresh paint dripping from his fingers couldn’t do anything but smile at the joy of his young son.

The words Reduce, Reuse, Recycle came to mind. It’s a story that has made me think beyond green. One that teaches me the true meaning of being eco-conscience along with an educational component that would help our society reconsider its unhealthy spending habits and enormous deposits of, “waste” into our most precious resource: our earth. I am hoping this simple story will do the same for you as it did for me!

Do you have any great similar stories? Please, come share them…


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