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Recipe for Love

Recipe for Love
This entry is part 30 of 70 in the series Spark

Separately, the ingredients are bland.

They might not organically co-exist naturally but when mix them together, they transform into something else entirely: 

  1. Oil + vinegar = salad dressing
  2. Hydrogen + oxygen = water
  3. Teenage boys + work = (unknown)

The sum of the parts are sometimes unrecognizable when compared to the separate elements. 

Love is one of those odd elements that doesn’t make mathematical sense. 

  1. We all have some,
  2. We all want more,
  3. We all have plenty to give,
  4. Yet we often struggle to both give it and receive it. 

But when we can both give and receive and then the other side of the equation also gives and receives, it’s love.

We’re going to solve the mathematical Recipe for Love once and for all. 

This is part of “Spark: How to write a book with your kids–and why you should.” Last night I gave a speech about how to plant the seed to get this endeavor started. This week, it’s about what we’re creating. What we’re creating–as much as we thought we were creating was a book–is love. 

The thing about love is that it doesn’t exist on its own. It can’t exist in a vacuum and it’s a little bit like the story about if a tree falls in the forest and no one is around, does it make a sound? 

We need someone to love–and we need that someone to love us to make the connection work. 

Let’s get back to the topic at hand: creating with a child. 

If I write a book then I have a book. 

If my child writes a book, he has a book.

But if we create it together, we have more than a book. We have: 

  1. Experience
  2. Together
  3. Sharing
  4. Listening
  5. Waiting
  6. Patience
  7. Impatience
  8. Expectations
  9. Fun
  10. Disappointment
  11. Unexpected
  12. Surprise
  13. Laughs
  14. Tears
  15. Regret
  16. Pride
  17. Fatigue
  18. Energy

What else could we add to the list when we create together with someone else? The “experiment” part of the equation is relevant because we cannot predict what will happen. We don’t know the “ingredients” (the elements) of the two sides well enough to know exactly what the outcome will be.

Oh, and by the way: that’s good news

When you don’t know what’s going to happen, that adds elements of adventure, surprise, and the glorious world of the unknown–which is a universe where children thrive (and where parents often struggle to survive). 

I see so much of this visually. I need to find 4 words that I can write on 4 lines where I can find the letters L O V E vertically–very Scrabble-like. 

Let’s get a quick list going and I can rearrange the letters: 

  1. Emotion
  2. Experience
  3. Together
  4. Creating
  5. Hmm, I need an L and a V … 
  6. Laughs, 
  7. Unconventional

For now, just cherry picking a few: 

  • Laughs, Listen, 
  • Own, Together
  • Unconventional
  • Creating

I think we might have it. 

The beauty of this recipe is that everyone will make it different. Let’s take a look at some of the case studies I have for the upcoming Spark book. 

  1. One-Recipe Cookbook: Rina wanted to make a 24-recipe cookbook. It was never going to be finished. One and Done.
  2. Space Dogs: uncle and niece collaborate on an intergalactic adventure–with dogs.
  3. Elemental P: Matthew and mom took to stick figures and the alphabet and now tour schools with their story.

Those are just a spattering of what might happen. Yet they started out with the same ingredients: mostly love, a generous helping of creativity, and a sprinkling of a little magic. 

If you had the ingredients, oh, I’m sorry, you do have the ingredients. How can I help you get into the kitchen and get this adventure started? 

Join us at to get washed up and ready to create something that didn’t exist before.

Recipe for Love
Recipe for Love. Is that stuff going to mix? What is that, oil?

Chemical Formula for Love

Take #1

Take #2

Take #3

Main points I want to get across. 

  1. Last week: elements needed (43 total, 42 optional, 1 required: love)
  2. This week: results of experiment: exponentially more love.

Main Timeline / Structure

  1. Last Week vs. This Week 
  2. Last week we learned that we only needed love to create the project together. 
  1. Listen: to pay attention
  2. Own: to recognize as having full authority
  3. Value: to consider with respect
  4. End: to bring to an end or conclusion

Alright, working on another version. Here goes. Speech is in an hour. Looks like I’m going to be winging it. It’s OK, I like winging it. 

Take #4

It is so much easier for me to talk about the stories of the other families than my own story. It’s not bragging, it’s new and interesting for me, I’m “allowed” to boast about their work, I can make them sound like rockstars and yet, we’re still talking about my book. 

Take #5: Toastmasters

Series Navigation<< Spark Love: About that 1 mandatory element of the 43…Kids need to crash their bikes to learn how to ride. >>


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