Looking back on 2017

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Empathy in Children’s Literature

When I started this blog in 2013. I told the whole story of adopting our youngest child. He came to us aged four years old and this made it more complicated than adopting our first son who came to us as a baby of eleven weeks of age.

I have completed those stories of the ‘olden days’ now! However, there are still things to say from the point of view of being a multiracial family in a multiracial society today.

During 2017 many regrettable things have happened from the point of view of progress or lack of progress for a multiracial society in my view but I won’t embark on writing a political blog.

One piece of welcome news during 2017 is the engagement between Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. She has made most interesting speeches about being from a mixed heritage and her views on the place of women in society are very welcome.

In my last blog post I said I would talk about cousins.

In our immediate family, four little girls were born between ten and fourteen years ago. Three were my great-nieces in Sweden and one was Mia, Sam’s daughter in England. D and I long cherished the idea of taking Mia over to Sweden to spend a few days with her cousins and this happened this summer. The Swedish relatives kindly prepared a five-day plan and everything worked out beautifully. The three girls greatly enjoyed each others’ company.   The outings and the garden trampoline provided a lot of outdoor fun.  Of course they all also had their mobile phones for quieter moments.

A few weeks after our visit, two of the girls came over to England to see the Harry Potter Experience. They loved it. Then it was their turn to visit Mia’s home, which fortunately has a children’s playground outside the front door.

We also went to the Diana Playground in Hyde Park. They had nearly grown out of this facility, but much delight was caused by a little squirrel – see picture.

Nowadays the world seems to be a smaller place than it used to. Children can make contact and see each other via Facetime, Skype etc. with relatives all round the world. They can also write emails, or get in touch by other mediums, such as Instagram (or other new ways that I do not know about.) When some things seem to be taking a backward step, one has to remain hopeful that contact and understanding between people of different backgrounds will continue and increase.

Let’s all look forward with hope to 2018!


Odette Elliott
Odette Elliott
I love writing stories for children. I have had six books published and am working on others.

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