I was standing in the checkout line at the grocery store when the lady in front of me was short of money, so she started to put some things back. I told her I would pay the difference, because I keep spare change in a separate pocket of my coat for times like these.
Just this pass week I was finding it kind of hard to pass smile cards around school - with finals coming I found myslef stuck inside studying. So one day when I was sick of studying, I stopped and saw that one of my freinds looked like she needed a hug.
I went up to her and gave her a big hug. Just then, something clicked in my mind. If my friend needed a hug, then somebody else might need a hug too. So I thought of my smile cards. While giving her a hug, I said these words:
"Tag - you've just been hugged. When you see somebody that needs a hug, give them one and say what I just said."
I just finished my Human Services practicum and as much as I loved the class and the instructor, I was dissapointed with my classmates. It was a small class - just 12 of us - and the other students took advantage of the instructor's kindness with late work, excuses for not completing assignments, etc. During the last 3 weeks of class, she was expressing her dissatisfaction and how she was going to have to re-think how she taught the class next semester. I really felt bad for her as she is a great inspiration to me and I could relate to her pain. In Chicken Soup for the Soul, there is a story about two guys walking down the beach covered with starfish. One guy is throwing the starfish back into the ocean as they walk. The other guy says "There are thousands of them you can't possibly make a difference." At that ... Read Full Story >>
Today I remembered to mail some money to a soup kitchen in NY that always struggles this time of year feeding the homeless. I'm strapped for cash this year (like all of us) but on our first real day of cold, I was reminded just how awful it must be to be cold and on the street.
The soccer ball sounds like the clatter of a rattlesnake's tail, fans are barred from cheering too loudly and the sidelines are clear plastic walls meant to keep the players in-bounds -- clearly not an ordinary World Cup. Save for the goalkeepers, all of the athletes are legally blind.
Welcome to the fourth World Championships of Soccer for the Blind. Spectator Marcelo Gonzalez, who coaches blind teenagers and 20-somethings in Argentina, said he still marvels how sightless players are so attuned to sounds, vibrations and the fast-changing position of their competitors.
Read more at http://www.iht.com/articles/ap/2006/11/24/america/LA_GEN_Argentina_Blind_World_Cup.php
Somebody baked cookies and put some in my mailbox. That was so nice. When I found them, it made my day.
There were no cookies in my neighbor's mailox, and he was having a rough day so I gave him some of mine. Those cookies made both of our days!
Yesterday was the Feast of St. Nicholas. My daughters and I went to the family night for religious ed at church. I knew it would be fun, but didn't realize just how much I would be filled with by the spirit of St. Nicholas. He lived around 300 A.D. This saint was one of the most giving souls we know of. It's what he's famous for, his acts of kindness. He would be a regular on this website! Our activity was to make a treat bag, wrapped in a piece of rugged brown corduroy cloth, filled with fruit, nuts and candy, and then later to choose someone to give it to. I was really looking forward to that! After the activities, we had a prayer service in which "St. Nicholas" made an appearance. The children took off their shoes and left them in the basement. When we went back down, there ... Read Full Story >>
Its easy to forget those old faces from work or friends from home. Today was a day that I sent out emails, belated birthday wishes, and hellos to old friends and coworkers from back home!
It is 8:00 am at the Indian Coffee House. Breakfast time. We have taken a table in the “Ladies and Families” room, and are sipping fresh lime juice while we wait for our food. Shortly after we sit down, a woman takes the table next to us and orders a coffee. Though the clientele of the Coffee House is as class-diverse as just about any eating establishment I can think of in India, the woman is more shabbily dressed and unkept than anyone I have every seen there. She is barefoot, and her hair is just beginning to regrow after a recent shaving. Her demeanor is introspective and slightly sad. The waiter brings her an extra-full cup, setting it gently before her as if to say that he wishes he could do more to alleviate her sorrows. In fact, he does plenty. The coffee brings a contentment to her face. She ... Read Full Story >>
The wife had an appointment after work and as she doesn't like to drive she asked me when I picked her up from work if I could take her.
She said she'd take about an hour and she'd understand if I didn't want to wait and I said sure I'll drive. Our downtown, small as it is, can get crowded at times especially this time of the year.
While sitting in a parking spot reading my book, I had noticed this one car had made two trips past me looking for parking. I thought how lucky I was to have a spot and then a few minutes later I see this same car at the corner scanning for a spot. Knowing I could just drive around as the wife should be back soon, I put the Echo in reverse and the look of relief on the lady's face was priceless.
People are pretty polite driving-wise here in Hawaii anyways but along with the shaka she flashed the smile she gave me made my day. It only took a few trips round the block before the wife showed up and I thought about how easy it is to be polite and thoughtful. What if everyone cared? Imagine!
My sister-in-law has a friend who came to visit with an 8-month old baby. I've offered her a lot of baby things to use while she is on her visit (stroller, saucer, toys, videos, carseat). Having been there I know how hard it is to travel, especially with all the baby gear! I am just glad I have held on to some of my baby things so someone else could get some use out of them.
The other mom has been so grateful of everything I've let her use and that is what makes me happy.
Everyday I pick one or two teachers, or staff at my school, and drop a treat, and a smile card in their box. Just something small like a candy bar, or the book Random Acts of Kindness. If I give them the book I write in it I hope this makes you smile, please read it and pass it on... :)
I recently donated my baby son's clothes, formula, etc. to a stranger who was expecting a baby. I even gave brand new outfits that I really loved- a little baby gown with a duck on it. The woman who is young (maybe 19 years old) has a partner who can't afford the $250 to fly into town to see his baby delivered. Although I've never met this woman, it was really humbling to think about how many material things I have and how many things I take for granted in my life. Never fully appreciating my circumstances and the plenty in our lives - food, shelter, family, friends, etc. I saw how greedy I had become and how I needed to be grateful for what I have on this earth. The young woman did deliver her baby and I heard that the baby went home with the duck gown as his first baby ... Read Full Story >>
Someone sent me a verse that really stood out for me as something that could lighten up my life as well as other's lives. I have a cleaning business. On this particular day, I was doing my volunteer cleaning for an organization that finds mentors for children who are between homes. I love to sing while I clean, so I put it to music and sang variations of this for about 5 hours straight with the intention of releasing everyone in the world and especially everyone associated with the place I was cleaning from any doubts or fears they may be holding on to. I sang quietly because there were still a couple of people working there even though it was evening. The volunteer coordinator said, "Oh good! You're singing!" So since I'd been singing quietly, I told her what the words were. She seem quite moved, so I was able ... Read Full Story >>
I am a middle school counselor. Earlier this week, I had a very caring, compassionate student tell me about a project she has undertaken. She said she has started a collection for supplies for the troops to make their holiday's more joyful. I asked her what organization she was doing this through and she was confused by my question. Finally, she said, "No, see my sister who is in 5th grade and I are doing this on our own!" I was amazed that they had thought this up on their own. I asked their mother about it and she said that they had come to her to tell her about it.
I was happy to help her. I told her to put a box in the main office with a sign and a list of supplies (which she had already typed up!). She brought the box in the next day and students have already begun to add to it.
What a beautiful thing these kids are doing. I am so proud of them!
I met my neighbour last week at a home improvement store and he shared stories about the remodeling going on in his kitchen.
This week, as I was sorting through the mail, I noticed a $10 gift card from the same store. I dropped the rest of the mail, bundled up the gift card with a smile card, walked over and put it in his mail slot.
The whole thing took me only 2 minutes but it was immensely satisfying to do this spontaneously. With all the big purchases my neighbour has to make, I hope this small break brings him a smile.
We were downtown, our tiny downtown, running errands and doing some shopping when we were approached by a homeless man who asked for spare change. I will almost always help if I am able by giving something but today thought I'd try something so I asked what it was he needed the most.
He looked rather puzzled and then said I'm not gonna lie to ya, I need a drink. I gave him the money he needed and asked the Lord to watch over him. It brought back memories of years ago when I was homeless and some Christians asked me what I needed and I replied cigarettes. They bought me a pack and I've always remembered their non-judgemental help. Sometimes we can't see past the moment to see what our true needs are.
I was in my local library when I sat down at a computer. Behind me was a young woman with a little boy about 4 years old. I noticed he was starting to get bored as his mommy worked on the computer. I usually keep small sample items in my purse and give things to kids, sometimes it's in waiting rooms at doctor's offices, or train stations, airports, etc. (My children are grown so I remember how it was). So I reached in my purse and pulled out an extra child's sticker book with stickers. I asked the mom if I could give it to him she glady said "yes" and how happy it made this young child!
Thanks for letting me share my small story!
About a year ago, I was at a festival for Christmas. It was a very cold night and I looked down to see a $20 dollar bill. I picked it up and asked the people around me if they had lost it. After they said no, I couldn't just let it lay there on the ground so I picked up up and brought it home with me.
I went to the grocery store and bought some toothpaste, dental floss, toothbrush, chips, and a soda. When I walked out the door, there was a old, poor man playing the guitar for money. I frequently saw people throwing money in the guitar case so I walked up, gave him everything I bought and a few extra dollars. I talked to him for about 10 minutes, gave him a hug, said have a good nights sleep and walked away.
I was walking down the road and going through my purse and saw a smile card so I ran back and gave him the card. Then he said "thank you very much. You shouldn't have. Have a good day." I couldn't forget what I did - I felt so awesome!
Today I went to the city, having a bunch of appointments all over town. In my front coat pocket, I put 20 single dolar bills, a $20, a $10 & a $5, all folded separately and mixed up. Everytime anyone asked me for help, money, a donation to their cause, I would reach in my pocket and hand them whatever bill I touched first, not even looking myself.
New York is a big, needy city, and by the end of the day as I headed to the train I felt in my pocket that there was only one bill left. I had to look and sure enough, it was the twenty. One block from the station, a woman was standing on a corner asking: "does anyone have anything to eat? Does anyone have any leftover food I could have?" Without hesitation, I gave her the last bill and rushed off to my train, but not before I heard her stunned words "Oh My God! Thank you, thank you, thank you...."