"I just really wanted to find a way to enjoy my time with my son and instill in him the love of reading"
said Actor/Author Paul Carafotes. "I wanted to open up the world of imagination to him through reading".
"Although there are many, many great children's books out there, I felt that many of them were lacking in certain ways.
I wanted a book that was not only adventurous and imaginative but could also instill the values that I hold dear to
me and that I was determined to impart to my son, Charlie", Paul said. "I have always tried to live my life with the daily goal
of being Helpful, Loving and Kind. It has served me very well and, I truly believe, anyone who strives
to serve others will surely live a very rich and rewarding life!.
"It really was as simple as that", said Carafotes, "I set out to write the books as a gift to my son". One night, after reading a bed time story to Charlie,
Paul was laying with his son as they prepared to sleep. Charlie was still awake and was looking for more entertainment. As Carafotes tells it,
"I quickly remembered an old trick I learned as a child. I unfurled my tongue, formed a bubble and blew it in the air". Charlie sat up in amazement!
He was in disbelief and he wanted more. Of course, dad obliged.
As Charlie watched the bubbles blow away and tried to catch them,
he suddenly exclaimed "Can I get in the bubble Daddy?"
That was all the inspiration that Charlies' dad needed. With an acting career that has spanned over thirty years, Carafotes was always
looking for a creative outlet. "I'm going to write a book - For Charlie"
And so began the birth and journey of The Adventures Of Charlie Bubbles
One book led to another and, then, another. As the series garnered acclaim and acceptance, Carafotes embarked on a schedule of events from book signings, public appearances, school and hospital visits. He would often bring his guitar and, in addition to readings, would conduct sing-a-longs with Charlie Bubbles tunes that he had written. It was a fun and exciting time for him
as Charlie would often accompany him to these events. "I found that, at many events, as children lined up for Charlies' autograph
on the book, Charlie was giving the book away for free. When I asked him about this, he replied, 'I was just trying to be helpful' and
'I don't think he had the money to buy the book Dad'. Again, inspiration, through Charlie, struck me".
Carafotes turned to his trusted friends and family about his latest idea. "I watched as my friends like James Gandolfini and his work with Wounded Warriors or Joe Mantegna and all that he has done for bringing attention to American Veterans and I thought, in some small way, I could possibly have an impact on children's lives by giving them access to inspirational books that they would, ordinarily, not be able to get". Carafotes reasoned, "After all, Charlie was proof that the message was heard. He was now living it. With that simple act of giving a book to someone he felt was needy, he was living the mantra of being Helpful, Loving and Kind".
And so began the birth and journey of Charlie Bubbles Cares For Kids
As Charlie has grown he has now begun to collaborate with his dad in writing and expanding the Charlie Bubbles series of books. Ever mindful of incorporating important life lessons as well as making the stories fun and entertaining.
"I'm very, very proud of him", says Paul, "He not only helps with the administration
of the organization that he inspired, and that we have founded, but he is always excited to attend events, visit schools and hospitals and give the books to children!
We are both truly blessed. It has been an amazing gift for both of us to share in this journey and to know that we are living the mantra daily and, hopefully, instilling
that message into young minds. And, most importantly, we are creating
a very positive legacy by putting kindness and love out into the universe.
Also, we are having a ball doing it".
"Charlie and I both knew it would take a lot of commitment, dedication and hard work to start this charity. So, I sat him down
and after explaining the commitment that this would require, I asked him, 'So, you're sure you really want to do this?',
without hesitation Charlie said 'YES'. It immediately reminded me of what my dad used to say to me:
Say “YES” and anything is possible. Say “NO” and nothing happens!
Again, inspiration! Another positive message we can incorporate into the series of books. It's amazing how you can find
inspiration in everyday life, sometimes you just need to stop, look around and listen. If Charlie and I can positively impact
even one child's life through imagination and reading, that will be reward enough for both of us!"
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