At 12 our kids were finally allowed to legally babysit and get paid for doing so. My children, both boys and girls, often were paid to care for people's children for a few hours. Of course that also meant they got to be blamed if they did not do their job the way the children's parents expected them to do it or if the kids got into mischief. And sometimes they helped out parent's without pay - just to be kind.
Your dad often took his younger brothers to play ball or on a bike ride or to the park. They still talk about all the fun things he did with them. They both learned to love art when he let them use his special paints, and crayons and art tools with him.
When you were younger I was a bit disappointed that you looked so much like your mother's side of the family.
Later you looked almost like a twin of your father.
Who you look like doesn't matter nearly as much as who you act like. Now that you are 12 that is an additional and important thing for you to remember. Always remember that you are one of God's sons - even more so than you are the son of your father and mother.
You can be like your dad in some ways and like your mother in other ways and not even realize how much like them you are. I think we may not realize how much like Heavenly Father we are. You ARE his child. You can always choose to become more like your Heavenly Father. Jesus Christ, another son of God, set an example of how to become more like our Father in Heaven. Your mother and father are both kind people. They try to be kind to everyone around them just like Jesus was.
I love the Primary song, 'Kindness Begins With Me'. Your father was always a kind boy to everyone around him. Although he loved to tease his siblings he learned to not tease in unkind ways.
Now that you are a young man you will no longer attend Primary. It is time for you to begin 'Young Men's' and learn many new things and have many new responsibilities - more privileges and more fun.
|Your father near age 12|
(does he still make his ears flap?)
It is a privilege to be ordained to the priesthood and to be able to begin to serve God's children the way Jesus did. You will seldom have more genuine fun than when you serve others. I hope you follow your father's example in these good things.
I also hope you have a very memorable and happy day on this terrific twelfth birthday.