Today I went with a few friends out for lunch to a restaurant in Toronto that opened in the summer. But not just any restaurant, it's a pretty unique one.
It's called "Signs Restaurant", and in order to make an order for food, you have to use sign language. We're given a little cheat sheet before we order which shows simple conversational signs, and the menus show the signs for each food and drink item.
All the waiters and waitresses are without hearing, as well. Our waitress was amazing. She taught us a bunch of signs while we waited for our food, and she was patient with me as I tried. My friend, who's also deaf, helped me out a little, too.
The waitress said I did amazing. I feel inspired now to take an American Sign Language course and will do so the next school year. I've already learned quite a bit from YouTube. I can't wait. I had the eggplant lasagna and salad (quite hard to sign) but it was delicious :)
A young friend of mine needed some pointers on how to handle her job interview on marketing.
I arranged with one of my professional friends to meet with her and guide her on how to construct a marketing strategy.
I think she is ready to take on the marketing world. I felt really good to see how excited she was.
After I went to visit my eye doctor, I was about to go through the door to go my car. I noticed a lady sitting by the registration table counting all her coins.
As I was ready to drive out of the driveway, a bus blocked my way. I saw the lady come out of the office and give the money she had in her hand to the driver, then get on the bus. I had the sense that was the only money she had.
Fortunately, I had enough time to get out of my car and approach the bus driver. I asked them to give back her money as I would pay for her ride. The driver returned to his seat, then called the lady up to return her money. She looked outside to see who paid.
What I felt was her love, which was enough for me. She gave me the energy to go on.
My husband received this message in an email from one of his park friends & forwarded it on to me. I was so moved by it. I thought you’d appreciate seeing it, since all of us here know the power of sharing our positive encouragements with others: “Looking forward to 2021 and to strengthen our bond as friends. I truly appreciate you as someone with a tremendous sense of empathy and generosity. You've made me realize that life is not all about grief and sadness but also recognizing our blessings in what we have such as good health and comfort and also enjoying the little things in life. I am so thankful to you....” In my husband’s email to me, sharing his friend’s message, he added a note to me saying “you never know what effect you might have, keep Mishinating”. I replied to him: “and you keep Harvinating” 😉 My husband was ... Read Full Story >>
I've had a few very stressful weeks with family events and an international custody battle over my 2.5 yr old grandson...
I was at the supermarket today and thought I needed to do something nice for someone else. I bought two $10 gift cards, one I gave to the lady behind me in line, and the other one I gave to the attendant who kindly cleaned my car windows with a big smile.
I decided it didn't matter who I gave the cards to, that they would be sent to me and they were.
My 16-year-old son was intuitively kind to me today. I gave a presentation at work. My son thought to ask how it went, and was generous in telling me he had no doubt I was great.
I am moved by his thoughtfulness.
Some time ago, I came across a fellow busker who told me someone had just stolen the money tips from his guitar case. I thought I could give him some money to make up for it. He might have felt great because he was given a gift, and I would have felt great as I would have given a gift. But this idea came to me too slowly, and the busker left without a gift from me. Years later, I had the chance to put my idea into action. I saw a gentleman down on his luck speaking to a shop manager. He believed he had been short-changed by ten pounds at the till. "No. Sorry, mate, the till added up fine," the manager said. As the old gentleman turned away, my hand closed on a ten-pound note in my pocket. I hurried to the door after him as he left. I said ... Read Full Story >>
I decided to buy friendship cards and write how much my friends mean to me.
I chose people I have met throughout my life that I still keep in contact with, but mostly only through social media. So I thought handwritten cards and smile cards would be something fun.
Quietly folding origami hearts was my meditative response to processing the events of this week in the U.S.
I left a small box of them in the post office lobby, hoping to offer peace and connection in these difficult times. I checked back later and almost all were gone.
There is such an art to letting go of that which we cannot control, and yet staying engaged with so much that we can still do to touch lives.
(KindSpring Writer Amritha Mandagondi had a chance to sit down and interview Elizabeth Buechele, the Founder of SmileProject. Here's her inspiring interview on how Elizabeth has found happiness every single day, for the past 3,307 days.) They say life happens to those who pause and listen. Listen intently to that voice that’s calling out the boundless possibilities from within. Our friend in New York, Elizabeth Buechele from the age of 17 has set out on a journey to find the true meaning of happiness. There was no mentor or guide reaching out to help her define what qualifies as “happiness” and what doesn’t. She may continue to be on her quest but is confident that happiness lies in things that are not small but simple. Starting as one of her many rewarding accidents, the crusade of The Smile Project began in the late fall of 2011 as Liz drove home from school. “It was unusually warm ... Read Full Story >>
“Hello, my name is Marisa, and I’ll be your server,” our waitress introduced herself, setting down our menus. Laughing Water Restaurant at Crazy Horse Memorial was in full decoration for the holidays. There was only one other family in the huge dining hall, which was great for social distancing, but not great for Marisa’s tips. Obviously very pregnant, Marisa nonetheless served us with a cheerful demeanor, efficiency and consideration. Remembering how huge and miserable I felt when I was that pregnant, I had the urge to change our customary premade origami packet with a $5 gift certificate to a $50 bill instead for her tip. As we left, I gave the packet to Marisa. She was off in a corner, wrapping silverware in napkins. I didn’t expect her to open the packet immediately, but she called to us as we were at the cashier, “Oh! Thank you!” The surprise and happiness in her voice were evident. ... Read Full Story >>
A while back I saw the video Tashi and the Monk. It inspired me to sponsor one of the children. I chose a young adult who has a year left in her nursing school. I wanted to send something to brighten the kids' day but since the community is in a remote area, it's difficult to get things sent there due to Covid. Right now, the charity coordinators must wait until someone is actually travelling to the community and they send packages with them. Needless to say those packages are limited in size and amount. So, since I love making the peace doves, those seemed to be a good choice and I asked the coordinator who thought it was a great idea. So I'm in the process of making 200 peace doves (more than enough for every child and staff member at the community to have one and there will be lots ... Read Full Story >>
With the beginning of the New Year, I:
- washed and ironed a whole bunch of laundry twice for my mother-in-law who is momentarily stuck in hospital after a hip fracture and then a stroke
- mailed a parcel with bits and bobs and a money donation to support Lorna Byrne's sanctuary project
- gave a man who sells a magazine for the homeless a Christmas card with money and gifted him a Christmas cake from a bakery
- offered the birds fat balls which they love to feast on
- made candles and fire starters from old wax stumps to help the environment
- placed gemstone gifts at healing trees
- picked up litter and practiced gratefulness to nature like leaving little gemstone and coin gifts to honor the elementals
- supported artists on a website platform who design things by buying two cool scarves
- said a little prayer for passing ambulances
I have a dear friend who lives interstate. We met online years ago through a parenting site and have stayed in touch since. She has been through some hard times and is the sweetest of people. One of those who always do things for others but would never ask for help herself.
I found out last week she is taking her family on a holiday. This is HUGE for them as they struggle with money due to her husband not working as he battles cancer. So me being me, got all sneaky and have found out where they are staying.
I called their hotel and have bought s family pass to an attraction called Infinity. I've taken my young kids and it's awesome. The tickets have been placed in an envelope and put into their room for when they arrive tomorrow. I cannot wait for the surprise and joy it brings them. They both so deserve this!
I was standing at the till getting ready to pay my bill at the Fruit & Vegetable store. A middle-aged customer, with a Coke can in hand got to the till and tried to get his purchase fast tracked, but the cashier lady informed him that she had already started ringing my purchase. He shrugged and looked at me and said "could you add bread to my purchase for me, I am hungry and haven't been paid yet at work". I told him to go fetch the bread. While he was gone, I took out 20 bucks (ZAR20) from my wallet and gave it to the cashier, I told the cashier to ring his purchase ahead of mine, it's fine. She rang the purchase and tried to give me back the change; I indicated that she can give the change to him. The man looked at me and smiled and said "thank you"; ... Read Full Story >>
I went grocery shopping and left my wallet in the grocery cart outside. I didn't realize I had left it in the cart until I left the parking lot. It only took a few minutes to get back to where I left my wallet in the cart. I checked the cart and no wallet! I instantly went into panic mode. I knew with all the cash I had left in there to pay bills was forever gone. After the store manager told me that no wallet had been turned in, I drove home in tears thinking how could I be so careless with my wallet! Negative thoughts filled my mind on the way home ( No one will return it. Who's going to return a wallet full of cash? I was asking God and the universe, why is this happening to me? I always return lost purses, money, wallets back to the owner, why ... Read Full Story >>
HERE COMES THE RAIN AGAIN......
"The way I see it, if you want the rainbow, you gotta put up with the rain"
Today while walking thru the parking lot at work I came upon 2 soaked female students. The didn't have an umbrella or hat.
I called out to them and we went back to my car. I have about 8 umbrellas in my car, all of which have been left at various places on campus. I knew they would come in handy!
I gave the umbrellas to the two girls and they were very grateful. I told them to hold onto these umbrellas, and share them with students who need to stay dry, too.
A simple act of kindness made me feel so much better on this gloomy, wet day.
Remember, if there is a rainbow, it is only there because of the sunshine we all share!
In my favourite tea shop they'd showcased their Christmas teas in little shot glasses so people could sea and smell the leaves. I picked up each one in turn and one of them named baklava smelled absolutely delicious. I only drink herbal teas as caffeine disagrees with me. So, juggling with my purse and the hot tea I'd just purchased, I lifted up the sample box behind the display to check the ingredients in the baklava tea. Unfortunately, I failed to notice that the box itself was open. One by one, as I lamely attempted to right the problem, each and every item inside the box fell onto the display and floor. This isn't unusual in itself: I tend to spread chaos wherever I go, a part of my nature I find in turn sad, amusing, and exasperating. Most of the time, these incidents tend to make people scatter away from me, ... Read Full Story >>
this is the year LOVE
will shine ever brighter still
filling all with PEACE
for our hearts are tired
exhausted with news of doom
discord and disconnection
sick to our souls with worry
at the very brink
that is exactly
when the heart of us explodes
into a Lighter
BEINGness of PEACE
allowing the LOVE
to reach past all distractions
setting free our wings
hold on dear ones hold
onto all the LOVE your heart
can hold and then let
mj poem 12/24/2020
When I turned 50 I asked people to donate to Charity: Water in lieu of gifts for my birthday. Last year, for my 51st, I travelled around town and surprised people buying items for them using 51 one-dollar bills. I told myself that when I turned 52 I would use a deck of 52 cards, set up a card table downtown, and do card tricks for people walking by, but then COVID hit and has stayed with us up to my 52nd. I wanted to do something for someone today, but was unsure what I could do. We reconfigured our garage a few days ago and were able to clear a bookshelf which I put on Craigslist for a few bucks. A young woman said she wanted it, but I'd have to drive it to her place, and with the holidays being so busy, I wasn't willing to make the delivery, especially for such a ... Read Full Story >>