Wisdom From Daniel Tiger: Make Your Own!

Sometimes the little life lessons that children learn are important to remember as adults too.  You may remember the very popular book “All I Really Need To Know I Learned in Kindergarten” by Robert Fulghum that was a gentle reminder to us grownups to not forget simple wisdom such as Share Everything, Play Fair, Clean Up Your Own Mess, and one of my favorites:  When you go out in the world, watch out for traffic, hold hands, and stick together.   Yes, that’s good to know!

I had another one of these moments of simple wisdom a few weeks ago from none other than Daniel Tiger. If you’re not familiar with Daniel Tiger, it’s a popular animated children’s television show from a character originally on the Mr. Roger’s Neighborhood show.  This series uses a lot of the same gentle talk and helpful reminders that are so very reminiscent of Mr. Rogers himself.

Words of wisdom from Daniel Tiger: If there's something you need, try to make it yourself

So I was cleaning up the kitchen the other day while Hubs was keeping our grandson busy. They had happened across a Daniel Tiger video on the computer and I could hear this song playing:


“If there’s something you need, try to make it yourself . . .”


Yes, I agree!  I started laughing and hollered to Hubs “Hey, I think you found The Make Your Own Zone theme song!”

We had a nice chuckle – BUT – there is good truth and wisdom in that short little phrase that’s repeated over and over in their song.

“If there’s something you need, try to make it yourself . . .”

Here’s a link to the complete lyrics.  And for your listening pleasure, here’s the link to the Daniel Tiger videos, and at the time of this writing it is one of the videos listed on the right hand side menu: Try To Make It Yourself Song.

I think my favorite line from the song is:  “You can make it all by yourself, You’ll be proud that you figured it out”.

This is important for both kids and grownups.  It’s not being proud in the sense of superiority.  Instead it’s the pride and satisfaction in knowing you rose to the challenge, that you were resourceful, that you didn’t give up, that you were independent.  It’s the empowerment that comes from taking the time to stop and think, consider all your options, and to move forward with your plan.  Instead of just feeling helpless, you looked around, came up with your best solution, and put it into action.

Words of wisdom from Daniel Tiger: If there's something you need, try to make it yourselfOne of my hopes for the recipes and ideas I share on this blog is to not only give you directions and instructions, but to also give you inspiration.  Perhaps you’ll see one of my homemade creations or crafts and a little light bulb will come on in your head and you’ll have an idea for how to make it yourself in a way customized for your own situation. We all have different circumstances and different resources at our disposal and there will be times when it’s necessary to improvise and adapt.  That’s OK.  In fact, that’s usually a good thing.

One of my often repeated phrases here has been “Use what you have, to make what you need”.  That’s a valuable life skill and you never know when that skill will come in handy.

I have a favorite movie scene from the 1995 movie Apollo 13, the story of three astronauts who run into mechanical problems up in space and need to be brought safely home.  This flight is where the famous words “Houston, we have a problem” come from.  One scene in the movie shows the guys at mission control dumping out everything on the table that are the only supplies the astronauts in space have available.  That’s it!  That’s all they have to solve the problem.  They have to use what they have to make what they need. And they figure it out.  I find that kind of stuff super inspiring! Here’s the clip (at about 1:16 is where that scene starts).

So I encourage all of you to go forth and Make Your Own!  If there’s something you need, try to make it yourself.

You’ll be proud that you figured it out 🙂



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