It is raining very heavily and roads are flooded. I know an elderly couple who stay in a tent made of plastic sheets. The old man begs and old lady cooks from whatever he gets home. I thought about their plight and went to their tent carrying some food with me. they both gratefully accepted it.
The old lady asked me, "How did you come in such rains? Are you alright?" I was touched by her concern for me when she and her family are in such danger and facing hunger. Later my friends and I went with supplies to last them for sometime in case rain does not stop.
I went to play some basketball today and a couple of little kids came by and asked me for the ball. So, I loaned it to them happily.
Thinking back I realize I could have used the opportunity to maybe teach them something. Instead, I just went for a run while they played.
So, I'm going to call this a quart of kindness and take the lesson on board. The next time a kid comes by I will stay and try to teach them something, or maybe just play a while if they have no one else to play with.
Our public library is next to a building that helps the homeless. There are quite a few homeless people who end up sitting in the library reading or just staying dry and warm.
Today I gathered up a box full of my old magazines and donated them to the library. These don't have to be checked out and people can take them if they want to.This way the library staff don't have any extra work to do and people who can't afford magazines can still get to read them.
I cleaned out my boy's closet yesterday. Some items have stains or tears that couldn't be removed or repaired so I didn't think they would be much use for a human charity.
Instead of just throwing them away I cleaned them best I could and donated them to the local animal shelter. They can use them for bedding for the dogs and cats.
I just hate to throw anything away and to think they can keep an animal warm makes me feel good.
A few days ago I celebrated my 36th birthday. I decided to do 36 anonymous acts of kindness that day. So I bought 36 flowers and put it on car's windows- with a note that says: "Someone you do not know chose to make you happy.
Please give this flower to someone you love. Happy weekend and safe drive". Actually I wanted to print smile cards, but because we are on holidays -the shops were closed.
So I handwritten 36 cards. I did it with my little daughter and it really made my birthday- a celebration ! -
My daughter started a new chapter in her schooling today - a distance learning home-school program.
She was really stressing about it last night and feeling anxious and overwhelmed. So, I helped her work out a first week schedule for herself and this morning I typed her up a schedule for the today, complete with suggested breaks and kindnesses for herself.
I also called her halfway through the day, just to check on her. It felt good to help her through this new beginning.
I discovered that a chain of opticians in the UK takes unwanted spectacles (which are still in good condition) and sends them to a charity in Africa. The charity gives them to people who would otherwise not be able to afford glasses.
I delivered two pairs of glasses to the shop today. For just a little effort I hope to change how two people see the world.
I baked two cakes last night - one for my children and another to give away today.
When I have the opportunity to go walking or jogging outside I often see a man in a wheelchair. He sits outside his home and smiles and waves at passers-by.
So, my daughter and I packed the cake in tissue paper and colorful yarn, then placed it in a bag with a Smile Card.
She was so excited to give him this gift! Her excitement and his happiness made it all so worthwhile.
Happy weekend, RAOKtivists! It's Kindness Ninja Saturday!! My sweet class of 23 second graders absolutely love sneaking out of our classroom and performing acts of kindness. We call ourselves the Kindness Classroom and we are Kindness Ninjas! The Kindness Ninjas' favorite RAOK was hiding bottles of bubbles around the playgrounds.
The past two Fridays, the Kindness Ninjas have made positive post-it notes for their friends as well as for some anonymous recipients. A big ninja snuck around after school and put some of these on teachers' classroom doors!
So....take it from the Kindness Ninjas...
Be kind. Be nice. Be sweet. And, never forget that together we can be the change we wish to see in the world!
The teachers at my school have to order enough copy paper to last them the entire year out of our ever-decreasing yearly order stipend. Many of us end up buying paper with our own money because the yearly stipend just doesn't go far enough.
Today I snuck down to the copy room and loaded all the copiers up with paper.
I added a Smile card and a note wishing everyone a "Wonderful Monday!"
On my last visit to the local farm I took a few minutes to say hello to all the animals, including the sheep and the attention seeking donkeys.
The farm has the bubblegum dispenser style feed machines where visitors can purchase food to give to the animals. I bought some food and enjoyed feeding the animals, then I filled all the machines with quarters for the next person who came along.
It was a busy day at the grocery store and two young ladies were in line behind me with birthday balloons. They appeared to be stressed and in a hurry so I asked if they wanted to go ahead of me. They were very appreciative. I asked what the balloons were for and one girl said they were for her nephew's second birthday. She said it was a difficult day for her with lots of family drama and that her nephew had a twin and something bad happened to the baby at birth. I noticed she had a small heart shaped tattoo on her neck with the a date in it. The date was exactly two years ago. So, I knew it had to be a significant day. They were chatting together about their rush to get ready for the party, all the things left to do, and how nobody offered to ... Read Full Story >>
Cycling through Boston, I noticed a parking enforcement officer patrolling the curb, checking for parking violations.
I stopped, dismounted, and thanked her for doing her job.
"I figure you must get a lot of abuse," I said, "but what you do is important."
First she looked astonished, then she looked delighted.
"No one ever tells me that," she said. "Except sometimes in the South-End where residents are desperate to protect their parking spots."
"Well, I don't need parking," I said, indicating my bike, "but I believe in livable cities and keeping parking under control is part of that."
We chatted about her work (her knees hurt more than her feet, she said.)
"The next time someone yells at you," I said, "remember this conversation."
Smiling, she promised she would.
I am currently participating in a "30 acts of kindness in 30 days" challenge which I set myself. Let me explain! A dear friend of mine recently celebrated her 30th birthday. Rather than doing what most women of her age would do, she decided to host a "random acts of kindness" party, inviting her friends to participate in spreading some kindness in the world, and to spend money they'd have spent of a gift for her in acts of kindness to others. At the restaurant, she had a lucky dip draw, and everyone received an act of kindness they had to carry out anonymously. She'd also prepared cards for all those present, where she'd written to each guest personally, saying what they meant to her as a friend, and then passed them around the table for everyone else to add nice comments about each other. She explained to me that she was ... Read Full Story >>
I feel it is important to remember as we are moving through this kindness challenge that being kind shouldn't feel like something 'extra' you are having to do in a full list of many things to get done during your waking moments. Kindness comes in many forms, some extraordinary, some less bold and noticeable, but kindness in all its forms is equally important. Something like picking up a piece of trash you see laying outside in the parking lot, thanking someone for their efforts, offering to run an errand for someone who has an overabundance of tasks to get accomplished, all can be just as impactful as a grander gesture. Many times, kindness can be found in just paying attention. When you take the time to notice what someone enjoys or the hard work they do, it says to that person that you care about them and notice their efforts and ... Read Full Story >>
I read the email about the No Complaining challenge first thing this morning and I suspected that I might struggle with it...and I was right.
This challenge may need to be an ongoing, underlying challenge for the extent of the 21 days. I'm not a big complainer, but I certainly do my fair share of whining.
So....I decided to augment my kindness acts with one I was very excited about. We have a neighborhood laundry mat down the street where mostly retired couples do their weekly laundry. I snuck in after work and loaded up a washer and dryer with quarters and smile cards.
I was especially excited to see a washer in use with no one around. I knew then that someone would be getting a "smile" very soon! Wish I could have been a fly on the wall!
Today I went to my daughter's school and spoke about kindness to 60 kids plus teachers and teacher assistants. After a small talk about the meaning of kindness, I gave a challenge to the children - I told them to write a small story about an act of kindness that they had done and how that made them feel. Or if they had received of an act of kindness how did that make them feel? In what way had that act changed them? Then I and the Deputy Head and the Head Teacher will choose the best ones, the one that will stand out for their feelings of compassion and love toward others. When I was waiting for my daughter I saw some teachers that were at the assembly passing by and I was hoping that they would tell me if they liked the talk or not, but they didn't say anything. Then this little boy came to me and said: "You know, I enjoyed the ... Read Full Story >>
DAY 2 Interestingly enough, I experienced two realizations today during Day 2 of the Kindness Challenge. I would like to share them here. #1 I noticed that when I began my day and remembered that I needed to complete my challenge, I thought: "I have to engage in a kindness act today." Immediately I noticed how my body tightened up when thinking about it, particularly the "have" part of it. In my past, generosity and kindness were just a way of being, and not a requirement, so now that it's required for me to log in and then complete a Kindness act, I resented it. Then, I realized that I didn't "have" to do anything, all I "have" to do was just be me, then Kindness flowed. #2 As I was trying to figure out and plan which act of kindness I was going to perform, I realized that I was looking for bigger actions. Then ... Read Full Story >>
Hello fellow kindness givers, Day 3 and more of a pleasure than a challenge as we creatively think up ways of kindness or seize upon subtle opportunities as they come our way.
I am a second hand clothing lover and I stopped this morning at a little fundraiser in my local shopping area with massive piles of clothing going for $5 a bag. Found some delightful things, and found some items I think a friend might like.
She is always giving me her castoffs so it will be nice to give her something in return when I catch up with her this afternoon.
I was happy to receive this morning's 21 day challenge idea of reconnecting with an old pal and so I reached out to two of my old college roommates, expressing gratitude for their roles in shaping an earlier version of myself.
After sending out a heartfelt email, I went to get my morning health shake from the juice store around the corner. I also stopped at a coffee shop to pick up a snack for a co-worker when the lady behind the counter (Lucy) commented on how I should bring her a juice one day, so I smiled and just gave her mine since I hadn't drank it yet!
She thought I was joking at first, but was ultimately taken aback by the surprise act of kindness. This was so great since the Day 1 act of kindness was giving away a special treat to someone, which I did yesterday.
It isn't even 8:30 am yet and I just got a double act (opportunity) of kindness...can't wait to see what tomorrow brings!