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Turn Up the Volume Parents!

Help your children learn responsible behavior just in time for the new school year.

As parents, sometimes we think that when our children are off to school, our job is done; now it’s the teacher’s responsibility to educate our children. We have a break! Sometimes we may think that, as parents, we must set aside particular times or create special situations in order to teach our children.  But that is far from the truth when it comes to teaching responsibility. Sometimes the most ordinary situations in everyday life are filled with opportunities for sound teaching, if parents pay attention to them.

The US Department of Education has published an informative booklet that contains activities to encourage the habits of responsibility in your child. Most of them are not, however, the kind of activities that you can do together for half an hour once a week. Instead, they are more like rules of thumb, ideas to build on. They should stimulate your own thinking and your own ideas.  Just remember one thing: teaching our children about responsibility doesn’t mean that we can’t laugh or that we have to be grim. Our children should see that we can be serious about our principles, while still being able to play and have fun.


The first exercise I want to share is about bullying. This is a fear nearly HALF of all students face. As the parent of an eight year old daughter with special needs, I find the next exercise enlightening, particularly because she is two to three times more likely to be bullied than her nondisabled peers.  The facts – Students with disabilities are much more likely to be bullied than their nondisabled peers. One study shows that 60 percent of students with disabilities report being bullied regularly compared with 25 percent of all students. []

It is the duty of parents and family members to educate their children about physical and cognitive differences in all human beings.  We have become a society with a strong emphasis on looks and material wealth. It’s crucial for parents to have heart-to-heart discussions explaining that beauty comes in all shapes, colors, choices and sizes, “because we’re all the same on the inside.”

Our first line of defense when someone is being bullied is to blame the bully for the behavior. Why not give our children the tools to learn not to allow others to mistreat them? At the same time, we want them to learn how to reach understandings peacefully, whenever possible.

1. Listen to your child and find out if others are not treating your child as they should. This will encourage your child to trust you and come to you when there is a problem.

2. Help your child consider various ways of dealing with a particular problem.

3. If the problem is the way another child is behaving, suggest working out the problem by talking with the child’s teacher, or a responsible adult.

4. PARENTS: Befriend the bully!

I understand this may sound impractical, but it has worked every time for me. I have learned to assume that it’s often the bully who needs some love. And I find a way to give it. Often, it’s by volunteering at my daughter’s school or accompanying her class on a field trip. I become very attentive to the offending child. By building a healthy relationship with them, it always, in turn, reflects on how they treat my daughter and the bullying ceases.  Never will I confront the child about their negative behavior; quite the opposite, I point out all of their positive traits and make them feel extra special.

5. If the problem is another adult, however, or if your child is seriously threatened by other children, you will need to intervene directly.

A part of self-respect is not tolerating mistreatment by others. Finding appropriate ways to deal with unpleasant behavior by others is an important, if sometimes difficult, part of growing up.

This article was written by Stacie Carroll who has recently published her first children’s book entitled When Hairy Met Tallie. A true story, written in a fictional context the storybook communicates the language of kindness, compassion and acceptance through delightful, contemporary illustrations and rhyming conversation.

Stacie is on a mission to get in front of as many people as possible to spread Hairy’s message of love, acceptance and equality through interviews, media appearances and speaking engagements at schools and libraries. 

Unlikely Hero Teaches Children Compassion and Acceptance in Stacie Carroll’s New Storybook, “When Hairy Met Tallie”

First time author helps children learn how to accept themselves and others just the way they are in this delightful children’s storybook.

Stacie Carroll brings her true story to life in her entertaining and educational book about the introduction of “Hairy,” a life-size skeleton to her 8-year old daughter, Tallie.

Because Tallie looks different than her family and she doesn’t learn like other children, she has been teased and taunted throughout her life, often leaving her feeling alone and misunderstood.  The author, Tallie’s mother Stacie Carroll, had tried everything to boost her daughter’s self-esteem and help her understand that she is perfect just the way she is. In an uncanny chain of events, Stacie was able to do this through the most unlikely source – a life-size skeleton she strapped into her front seat last Halloween when she picked up Tallie from school.

Tallie was delighted with the surprise and christened the skeleton “Hairy” because she said, “He doesn’t have any hair!” This boney figure quickly steals the heart of the whole family. Her mother soon recognizes that Hairy may hold the key to helping Tallie feel better about herself – Hairy represents what we all look like on the inside. Hairy’s presence reassures Tallie that she’s like everyone else, and they are like her, “because we’re all the same on the inside.”

“Hairy’s lessons have literally transformed Tallie,” said Stacie. “In just a few weeks, Tallie’s attitude completely changed. She became happy-go-lucky, even gaining the confidence to participate in her school’s talent show and the Special Olympics this year.”

She was so moved by the experience, Stacie felt compelled to find a way to share Hairy’s message with others. The family started taking Hairy with them everywhere – bowling, on a cruise, to the grocery store, out to dinner. “Most people can’t help but stop and ask us why we have a skeleton with us,” Stacie explains. “It gives us the opportunity to share Hairy’s message. People really get it.”

Tallie’s transformation led her mother to capture the story and write her first book, “When Hairy Met Tallie.”  Although she’s never considered herself a writer, she says the ideas, pictures and words just flowed out of her and onto the page and it was as much a surprise to her as it was to her family and friends.

In the book, the author takes us on a fictional walk through their meeting and the bond that develops between her daughter and this skeleton.  Communicated through delightful, contemporary illustrations and conversation, this book illustrates the language of kindness, compassion and acceptance, in a way both children and adults easily understand and remember.

“Hairy becomes somewhat a magical, heroic character in the book – a visual trigger to remind us that we’re not so different after all,” Stacie explains.  And it appears there will be more lessons from Hairy to come. She is nearing completion of her second story featuring Hairy. “I suppose you could say this book is the first in a series,” she laughs.

The mother of three has completed the storybook, self-published “When Hairy Met Tallie,” built a website at, hosted her first book signing at her elementary school in Virginia, and is on a mission to get in front of as many people as possible to spread Hairy’s message of love, acceptance and equality through interviews, media appearances and speaking engagements at schools and libraries.

Thank you in advance for your consideration and support in helping share Hairy’s message to your family, friends, and your audience.

Feel free to get in touch with Stacie by phone, 919.232.1971 or email,

Phaedra Parks from Real Housewives of Atlanta Can’t Wait to Read WHEN HAIRY MET TALLIE to her Children

We gave Phaedra and her friends a ride after the Anderson Cooper and Andy Cohen A2 event in Atlanta this weekend. She can’t wait to read the book to her children! Thank you Phaedra for all your enthusiasm and energy. You sure do spread the love!!!

Anderson Cooper and Andy Cohen receive a preview copy of WHEN HAIRY MET TALLIE at their A2 show

Thanks for the fabulous and fun night. The stories Andy and Anderson told were hilarious. They are a perfect testament to the power of love, kindness and acceptance. We can’t wait to meet you again soon!

Veteran teacher gives rave review for “When Hairy Met Tallie”

Book Review by Diane Johnson

Retired teacher: 31 years in New Canaan Public Schools, CT

Stacie Carroll’s book, “When Hairy Met Tallie” shares a message of kindness, acceptance, confidence and love. This heart- warming children’s book encourages individuals “to be kind to each other, for this world can be tough. And love with your heart that will always be enough.”

This original story empowers and celebrates uniqueness in all of us. The words are powerful. The illustrations are innovative and colorful. Through the use of words and illustrations, children are empowered to recognize their individual worth and to develop confidence in themselves. One aspect of character education is the ability to treat others with respect. “Be kind to others and kindness will return.”  We have more similarities than we do differences. It is truly a story that will inspire parents and children of all ages.

Tallie at the Taylor Swift concert

This is Tallie at the concert. She looked exactly like this the entire time… completely amazed and in awe!

She wears the ear muffs because loud noises and large crowds often overwhelm her and the ear muffs give her a sense of security. Sweet girl!

June 27th, Meet the Author and Book Signing Event in Stacie Carroll’s Hometown

Snow Creek Elementary School presents When Hairy Met Tallie author and Franklin County native, Stacie Haynes Carroll for the Premiere of her new children’s book.

MEDIA ALERT – Raleigh, NC –  Snow Creek Elementary is hosting a Premiere Signing Event with Snow Creek graduate Stacie  Haynes Carroll, founder of Hairy’s Heart and author of the highly anticipated children’s book When Hairy Met Tallie.  

Stacie’s first public signing of the 24-page book will be on Saturday, June 27th from 10 a.m. to noon. The school is located a393 Snow Creek Road, Penhook, Virginia.

Carroll’s delightful book is a story about the introduction of a life size skeleton to her 8-year old daughter, Tallie and the wisdom this unlikely source imparts about kindness, self-confidence and acceptance.

Christened “Hairy” because Tallie said “he doesn’t have any hair!” Hairy quickly becomes a member of the Carroll family and goes everywhere with them – bowling, to the farmer’s market, even on a cruise, giving them many opportunities to share Hairy’s message with curious onlookers.

Tallie’s transformation from a shy little girl who often feels left out to a jubilant, self-confident little girl at the end of the book demonstrates the power of a magical phrase Hairy repeats over and over, “Because we’re all the same on the inside.” That one simple phrase illustrates and encourages both children and adults to always be kind to yourself and to others because we are not as different as we sometimes believe.

Children will have the opportunity to meet Hairy and become his friend and are encouraged to invite their parents to attend. As Stacie says, “often it’s the adults who meet Hairy who are the most profoundly impacted.”

The author will be signing books that will be available for purchase.

For more information, contact Stacie Haynes Carroll at 919.232.1971 Find us on Facebook. Thank you!

“When Hairy Met Tallie” in Stores This Summer

Author and Tallie’s mom, Stacie Carroll announced today that her first book in her series about Hairy, the life size skeleton who teaches kindness and equality will hit stores this summer. Entitled, “When Hairy Met Tallie,” it relives the story of the introduction of Hairy at Halloween and how Tallie was finally able to understand that she wasn’t different from anyone else. That, as Hairy says, “because we’re all the same on the inside.”

Stacie has been writing the children’s book since December and is targeting a 3 to 8 year old audience.

“The story has a message that will help special needs children like Tallie feel more confident in their own skin, and at the same time Hairy can empower anyone who feels different to just think about how we’re all made of bones and a heart.”


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