Yesterday, I took my brother's puppy to the pet store to spread some kindness. My mom and sister have been watching him while my brother is at work and when I went to pick him up to go to the store my mom gave me money in case I saw something cute to buy him. As we walked around the store, I looked at various options but started to feel uncomfortable. Here was a whole store devoted to pets with everything you could imagine, while some humans struggle to survive and others die for lack of basic necessities. The puppy and my family's other dogs already have plenty of toys and everything else they'd ever need. I decided not to buy anything. When I told my mom, she said to save the money for myself. She won't take "no" for an answer so I graciously accepted and decided to use the money ... Read Full Story >>
I stopped at a grocery store the other day because I was about to go on a long drive and I wanted to buy my favorite beverage for the trip. It wasn't the store I normally go to, just one I passed along the way. As I walked up to the entrance, I noticed a man and a boy who was about 10 or 12 years old standing at the front of the store. Customers walked past, as the man handed them half-sheets of white paper. I walked up to them with curiosity, wondering what cause they were representing. As I got closer, I saw that they had two carts starting to fill with groceries. I said hello and the man greeted me and handed me one of the pieces of paper, explaining that they were collecting donations for the local food pantry. On the paper was a simple list of food items: peanut butter, noodles, pasta sauce, canned fruits and vegetables. It also included a short story about the boy and his ... Read Full Story >>
December kindness for today. I visited the mall, went into ladies' fitting rooms and bathroom, left positive messages on heart post-its. One of my favorite RAKS (random acts of kindness) to do! Our words matter. They can encourage and build people up, or shame and tear them down.
When I was putting the hearts on the bathroom mirror a little girl saw me and kept saying, "hearts, hearts, I love hearts!" :)
I left a stack of blank post-its and a pen behind in the bathroom for others to add messages if they'd like. ♡
My kind act for today was making a video of my fur brother Max for my mom. Today I am grateful for play, fun, silliness. :))
I had a busy "to do" list today and was about to get started when my sister called. I talked with her for a short time and could hear my seven year old niece in the background, full of energy as always, and getting told off for something. I asked to speak with her, both because I love talking to her and because I was hoping I could help divert some of her energy in a more positive direction and give my sister a break. I listened and talked with her on the phone, giving her as much time as she needed to share her thoughts and express herself. The conversation went on for quite a while as I was updated on all the latest, important happenings in her life. In exchange for my time she gifted me with her adorable stories and sense of humor. She says the cutest things that always ... Read Full Story >>
Today I spent some quality time with one of my cousins. We decided to go for a walk at a nearby beach.
I brought a permanent black marker with me and, as we walked and talked, I occasionally picked up stones and wrote positive words or drew hearts and smiley faces on them.
On the way back, we could see the original path we took marked by love and smiles. It was beautiful!
Well, I told one of my sisters about this. A few days later day she, excitedly, called me up to her room. She showed me some pictures posted on a local association's Facebook page. They included two of the rocks I had left behind, one of a heart and the other of the message "Love wins."
It looks like a couple of the rocks have been found and have reached a wider audience! I hope these messages of love continue to spread.
I was traveling to visit my sister who lives a few states away. It was about a six hour drive and I stopped at quite a few gas stations along the way. One stop was in a small town that looked just like countless others I had passed on my way, but it turned out to be very different. When I entered the gas station the two girls working at the register smiled and said hello. They had a very friendly, welcoming energy and I smiled and greeted them back. Then I made my way to the restroom. I was surprised to see that there were positive messages written all over the stalls! Now, I'm not advocating graffiti here, but this experience did inspire me to leave positive messages in bathroom stalls on post-its, along with pens & blank post-its for others to add, during my next road trip! I took a picture ... Read Full Story >>
Each individual plant is breathing in carbon dioxide, breathing out oxygen. Each individual animal is breathing in oxygen, breathing out carbon dioxide. In this way, we are all connected and dependent upon one another in the deepest sense, for breath, for life. We are each giving and receiving a vital gift to the other, the ultimate kindness. Taken as a whole, all the plants breathing, in and out, all the animals breathing, in and out, it's as if the earth herself is breathing. One in breath. One out breath. Perhaps she feels each heart beat as well, and her singular heart beats with the strength of each of ours. Today I will be kind to the earth. I will walk gently. I will honor all living beings. I will look to the trees with gratitude for the gifts they freely give, rather than with superiority simply because they are different from me. I'll ... Read Full Story >>
Today it was cool and rainy and I saw a man standing at an uncovered bus stop, without a hat or umbrella. I stopped and gave him the umbrella I carry in my car along with a smile card. I had missed yoga today because of daylight savings but because I missed class I was able to do this kindness act, which for me is most important and enjoyable.
I try to carry extra umbrellas in my car for this purpose... to help those caught in the rain! It's a fun one. Later I went to the grocery store and bought a bag for the next person who needs one and left a smile card. Yesterday I paid people's tolls. Lots of little things to spread Love and Smiles. :)
It was a beautiful morning, uncharacteristically warm and sunny for this time of year. I was in the middle of a hectic day, packed full of activities and errands, with my mind on what I had to do next. As I drove along a very busy road to my next destination, I noticed a young child wearing a bike helmet walking out from the entrance of an apartment complex on the other side of the street. The complex was surrounded by woods on both sides and the entrance was obscured by trees and bushes. I couldn't see beyond the entrance but I hoped that his family was there, just out of sight, about to emerge behind him. He was young, maybe four years old, and it was a strange sight to see him alone near the busy street, even if just for a little while. I continued to look behind me but I didn't see anyone else coming out to join him as cars ... Read Full Story >>
I had been feeling distant from someone for quite some time. We hadn't been talking and there were hurt feelings on both sides. I decided to reach out and text her. I said I missed her and her kids and asked if they wanted to spend some time together. She enthusiastically accepted.
Later in the day someone else texted me and offered to take me on a trip in the fall, her treat. At first I felt guilty, like it was too much. But then I remembered how good it feels to give and I decided that I would respond with gratitude rather than rejection of her generosity.
Giving naturally feels good and comes easily to me. Learning how to feel good about receiving is new for me. I'm learning about it on this site from other people's stories. It helps me to remember that giving feels good to the other person. I don't want to take that feeling away from them by rejecting the gifts they offer.
Give and take, it all balances out.
I used to teach elementary school. A few days ago, I found a stash of toys and other things that I had used as prizes. They were small prizes like little cars, bouncing balls, animal cards, pencils with fun "grippers," and bracelets. I decided they 'd be a perfect giveaway for a random act of kindness.
As I looked through the toys, I decided to gift them in pairs (with a smile card) so that the child (or whoever finds the toy) can share one of the toys if s/he wanted with a friend (another kindness opportunity!). Today I thought about where I could drop them off... I had a few different ideas, but ended up deciding on park playgrounds. I went to a few different playgrounds within a few blocks of each other and hid the prizes.
While going around the playgrounds, I felt that this was another random act of kindness for my inner child. Plus, lots of fun! :)
I had two tickets to a local festival that I wanted to give away. I carried them in my purse, along with two Smile cards. I walked through a couple of parks near the festival, noticing groups heading towards it. I had a decision to make. Out of all of these people, who should I offer the tickets to? I had already attempted to give them away three times; twice to people I knew, once to strangers. They had all said, "No, thank you." So now I looked for someone else. I was having a hard time deciding. Two tickets, and so many people. All of them deserving, how could my brain choose? I decided I couldn't choose with my mind. So, I would listen for guidance instead, trusting it would appear. I had no idea who they would be or when it would be, I just felt I should head ... Read Full Story >>
Today's my 35th birthday. Every year I do acts of kindness, one for every year I've been on Earth during this lifetime. This year I prepared 35 cards to pass out to people. They include a positive message, SMILE card, $5, and a request to use the money to do something kind for themselves, others, or the planet. I'll hand them out with a friend tonight. Fun! :)
A couple of weeks ago I went to a new massage therapist. I was having a tough day and she listened to me and encouraged me. At some point I began crying, releasing the pent up emotions. After the session, she e-mailed me and asked me if I would be interested in doing an exchange... massages for Reiki (I'm certified in Reiki)... to help me save money since I'm undergoing treatments for Lyme disease and the supplements/etc. can add up. I happily accepted! We met today and it was awesome!
Earlier today, on my way to yoga, I saw a woman who was homeless and holding up a sign asking for help. I parked my car nearby and walked up to her, offering her the care bag I was carrying with food, personal care items, and an encouraging card. She began crying then I began crying, then we exchanged hugs and phone numbers. I hope I can continue to be of service.
Thankful for new friends I meet on the journey! Love to all of you and big big ((hugs))!
Today I'm grateful for small gestures of kindness. I was walking my parents' dog, Max, who tends to react anxiously towards loud noises, etc. As we turned the corner, I saw that one of our neighbors was cutting his lawn with a ride-on mower. When he saw us, he stopped, smiled, and waved. He started again when we passed. Such a small gesture but I really appreciated his thoughtfulness.
"Be kind whenever possible. It is always possible." - Dalai Lama
Kind act for today.. helped my sister clean and sort though her things. We laughed a lot and shared funny memories. :) ♡
Yesterday's kindness acts were hospital/health/earth kindnesses.
The first was a donation of magazines to Froedtert Hospital (called first, dropped them off at info desk to distribute). Other places that may accept donations.. nursing homes, retirement communities, libraries, military troops, veteran's associations, dentist office, women/family shelters, daycares, preschools, school/family/friend magazine swaps, craigslist, freecycle.
I also dropped off unused medication at the Froedtert pharmacy. Proper disposal of unnecessary prescription medications helps keep the groundwater clean. They are a free medication disposal and drug repository site. That means they also accept certain unused, sealed medications to donate to people in need (particularly people with cancer and chronic illnesses).
My "December Kindness" act for today is to drive patiently and kindly. That means going slower, letting people in, giving them the benefit of the doubt, and wishing them well.. especially those who cut me off, etc. I try to do this every day but today I will be extra mindful. ♡♡♡