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Even the most fun places on Earth can be dicey for parents of young children.

Take the carnival, for example. Yes, it's full of rides and music and lights and delicious snacks, but it's also a minefield of tantrum traps. One misstep here could cause your toddler to erupt.

That's nearly what happened to mom Brea Schmidt and her daughter when they hit up a fair in their hometown of Cleveland.


When Schmidt got home, she shared the doozy of a story on Facebook.

Schmidt's 5-year-old daughter was hooked on a carnival game, trying to win a bright pink "Poppy" doll.

Mom gave her dollar after dollar to try to win the toy, but alas, luck was not on their side that night.

Schmidt decided to call it, figuring this would be a good time to teach her daughter how to lose gracefully and how no matter how hard we try, we can't always get what we want.

Then, a stranger stepped in with a kind offer. (It's not quite what you think).

Schmidt explains in her now-viral post:

"Then I heard the voice of a fellow mom who saw my daughter's tears and had been watching her open all of those tickets with excitement.

She says, 'You know what, honey, I have a dollar and I'm going to give it another try for you.'

My girl speed-lifted her head off my shoulder and started twirling her hands the way she does when she's excited.

The woman grabbed a dollar from her personal wallet, snags the three-for-$1 ticket from the bucket of tickets... and no joke opened a winning ticket.

The look on my daughter's face was the absolute best. Nothing but pure, 5-year-old thrill shining through the leftover tears and snot on her face."







The girl was overjoyed, and Schmidt's picture showed her sleeping with the doll that night, in a state of pure bliss.

Last night my girl was playing a game at the church festival in my hometown... trying desperately to win a Poppy doll by...

Posted by The Thinking Branch on Friday, July 21, 2017

"So maybeeeeee we missed the 'you don't always get what you want lesson' last night," Schmidt wrote. "We'll save that one for another day."

That doesn't mean her daughter learned nothing. She learned an arguably even more powerful lesson: kindness, and the power of simple acts of generosity to light up another person's day.

Some may say the other mom overstepped, but Schmidt doesn't see it that way.

"Her gesture was not about overstepping," she writes in a Facebook message. "She was acting from her heart out of kindness for me and my child... and not out of judgement. I think my own heart was just open that day, and that reminded me that I need to keep it open more often and not just assume that people are out to offend or judge us."

We all agree that teaching our kids to be kind and generous is one of the most important jobs parents have. Let's just remember that though there are many harsh lessons for them to learn, the best way kids learn to be kind to others is to experience it themselves.

Joy

1991 blooper clip of Robin Williams and Elmo is a wholesome nugget of comedic genius

Robin Williams is still bringing smiles to faces after all these years.

Robin Williams and Elmo (Kevin Clash) bloopers.

The late Robin Williams could make picking out socks funny, so pairing him with the fuzzy red monster Elmo was bound to be pure wholesome gold. Honestly, how the puppeteer, Kevin Clash, didn’t completely break character and bust out laughing is a miracle. In this short outtake clip, you get to see Williams crack a few jokes in his signature style while Elmo tries desperately to keep it together.

Williams has been a household name since what seems like the beginning of time, and before his death in 2014, he would make frequent appearances on "Sesame Street." The late actor played so many roles that if you were ask 10 different people what their favorite was, you’d likely get 10 different answers. But for the kids who spent their childhoods watching PBS, they got to see him being silly with his favorite monsters and a giant yellow canary. At least I think Big Bird is a canary.

When he stopped by "Sesame Street" for the special “Big Bird's Birthday or Let Me Eat Cake” in 1991, he was there to show Elmo all of the wonderful things you could do with a stick. Williams turns the stick into a hockey stick and a baton before losing his composure and walking off camera. The entire time, Elmo looks enthralled … if puppets can look enthralled. He’s definitely paying attention before slumping over at the realization that Williams goofed a line. But the actor comes back to continue the scene before Elmo slinks down inside his box after getting Williams’ name wrong, which causes his human co-star to take his stick and leave.

The little blooper reel is so cute and pure that it makes you feel good for a few minutes. For an additional boost of serotonin, check out this other (perfectly executed) clip about conflict that Williams did with the two-headed monster. He certainly had a way of engaging his audience, so it makes sense that even after all of these years, he's still greatly missed.

Democracy

Appalachian mom's speech on Kentucky's proposed abortion ban is a must-hear for everyone

Danielle Kirk is speaking up for those often overlooked in our cultural debates.

Canva, courtesy of Danielle Kirk

Appalachian mom gives passionate speech.

Many people felt a gut punch when the Supreme Court issued its decision on Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization, which overturned the decades-old Roe v. Wade decision that protected a woman's right to an abortion. However, for some this was a call to action.

Danielle Kirk, 27, a mom of two and an activist on TikTok, used her voice in an attempt to educate the people that make decisions in her small town. Kirk lives in Kentucky where a trigger law came into effect immediately after Roe v. Wade was overturned. Being a former foster child, she knew she had to say something. Kirk spoke exclusively with Upworthy about why she decided to speak up.

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Memories of childhood get lodged in the brain, emerging when you least expect.

There are certain pleasurable sights, smells, sounds and tastes that fade into the rear-view mirror as we grow from being children to adults. But on a rare occasion, we’ll come across them again and it's like a portion of our brain that’s been hidden for years expresses itself, creating a huge jolt of joy.

It’s wonderful to experience this type of nostalgia but it often leaves a bittersweet feeling because we know there are countless more sensations that may never come into our consciousness again.

Nostalgia is fleeting and that's a good thing because it’s best not to live in the past. But it does remind us that the wonderful feeling of freedom, creativity and fun from our childhood can still be experienced as we age.

A Reddit user by the name of agentMICHAELscarnTLM posed a question to the online forum that dredged up countless memories and experiences that many had long forgotten. He asked a simple question, “What’s something you can bring up right now to unlock some childhood nostalgia for the rest of us?”

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