Rad Reads

6 valuable lessons we learned from the Frog and Toad books

Do your days feel hectic with seemingly neverending cycles of school, work, routine and responsibilities? Are you feeling burnt out, stressed or generally just lost?

For those days (or weeks), you might find some solace in everyone's favorite illustrated children's book series: Frog and Toad by Arnold Lobel! The Frog and Toad series is well-loved for its two titular main characters, wholesome stories and cozy autumn aesthetic. Even though the books are technically for children, everyone—regardless of age—can learn something from Frog and Toad's simple musings.

1. Pat yourself on the back, even for the small things


Sometimes, approaching problems or tasks from a big-picture lens is daunting. Breaking up a large task into its smaller, simpler components can help! Take it one step at a time, and be proud of yourself when you're able to cross something off your list—just like Toad.

2. Friendship is everything


There's a reason why the first book in Lobel's series is titled Frog and Toad Are Friends: simply put, the stories wouldn't exist without their precious friendship! Frog and Toad are the definition of BFF goals. They visit each other, bike around together, comfort each other and generally just make the other happy. It seems simple, but it's important not to forget how important our loved ones are. Frog and Toad may not *always* understand each other because of their different personalities, but they always try to understand and unconditionally accept each other.

3. Don't forget to take breaks


Without taking breaks, how can you recharge, reflect and care for yourself? It's not healthy to fill every hour of your day with something "productive." We all need time to slow down and catch our breaths! Heed Toad's words and "take life easy"—don't turn in all of your assignments late, but also know that it's not the end of the world if you study for that algebra quiz for two hours instead of five.

4. Prioritize your needs—but be open-minded


Toad loves staying in and sleeping (relatable, tbh). It's part of his personality! There's no such thing as extroverts being better than introverts, or vice versa. If you *really* don't feel like going out, that's so valid—again, don't forget to take breaks! But also note how Frog (without being forceful) often pulls Toad out of his comfort zone (AKA: his bed) to go on small adventures together. Keep an open mind to new experiences or things outside your comfort zone—you don't know what beautiful memories you might make!

5. It's OK to be sad


Life isn't always sunshine and rainbows, even for Frog and Toad. Like us, they sometimes feel frustration, loneliness and sadness, like when Toad is sad because he never gets any mail. Don't try to suppress those emotions; instead, acknowledge the emotions and voice them to someone you trust if you want to. After all, when Toad told Frog that he was sad about not getting mail, Frog went home and wrote him a letter!

6. Dream big (or small)


It's always good to have the hope to reach for the stars, but if you don't have any huge, ambitious dreams yet, that's totally OK. Frog and Toad's daily lives are fairly simple, made up of kite flying, gardening and baking. Sometimes, the small things are the most rewarding—like the cookies that Toad bakes and scarfs down with Frog. Have dreams as big as "tall oak trees," but also dreams as small as raking leaves for your best friend.

Check out these posts for more fun book content:
🍂 5 books that channel the ultimate autumn vibes
🍂 These books are perfect to read during the school year
🍂 How to start reading nonfiction

Tell us your fave words of wisdom on Twitter @girlslifemag!

Top & slider image: @myoldbooks


by Jinny Kim | 1/4/2023