Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Random Acts of Kindness

For Thanksgiving, I was trying to find somewhere that my whole family could volunteer together. I was very discouraged that it seemed every idea I came up with and checked kids were too little. Then a friend from church contacted me and asked if we would be interested in staying after the Thanksgiving service to help separate and organize the food donations that every one would be bringing that day. I was very excited about this and we decided we would. Scooter and Little Man only made it about 20 minutes carrying food to the different areas with me helping them and then they were done...but they did it!! The girls did it to the very end and we had a great time with our little family and with our new church family volunteering for Thanksgiving!

The last day of November, my sister-in-law emailed me and asked me what I thought of this. It reminded me of another blog I had seen here that I knew I wanted to do on my next birthday. My family just started reading a book about advent called Jotham's Journey and in the beginning of the book it talks about showing kindness to others during Advent. So I decided VERY last minute that we were going to do this too!

25 days of Random Acts of Kindness for Avent! Here is the list we initially started with.

1st (Thu) Fill up someone’s gas tank

2nd (Fri) Tape coins to vending machines

3rd (Sat) Give a gift bag of food/drink and a blanket to a homeless person

4th (Sun) Buy a hot cocoa or latte for Salvation Army bell ringers

5th (Mon) Purchase toys for kids in need

6th (Tue) Tape candy canes and happy holiday notes to ATMS

7th (Wed) Take a set of holiday books and leave at a mall play area

8th (Thu) Offer to buy a pack of gum or mints for checkout clerk at grocery store

9th (Fri) Hand out pretty Christmas flowers

10th (Sat) Bring Christmas cookies to all our neighbors

11th (Sun) Help someone put their groceries in their car

12th (Mon) Bake & deliver Christmas cupcakes to library employees

13th (Tue) Bake a deliver Christmas cookies & bread to the fire department

14th (Wed) Bake and deliver Christmas cookies & bread to the police department

15th (Thu) Collect canned goods for food pantry

16th (Fri) Pass out candy canes to folks mailing off their Christmas cards at the post office

17th (Sat) Take back shopping carts, hold open doors for rushed and weary shoppers…

18th (Sun) Leave small Christmas treats/gifts in shopping carts for folks to find

19th (Mon) Take presents to hard working post office employees

20th (Tue) Call animal shelter and find out what donations they need. Make a contribution & visit animals.

21th (Wed) Leave basket of Christmas gifts on doorstep of a family that needs it

22nd (Thu) Buy coffee for stranger at Starbucks

23rd (Fri) Leave present in mailbox for mail carrier

Christmas Eve: (Sat) Take all night drug store employee a Christmas surprise (because it’s no fun to work on Christmas Eve!)

Christmas Day: (Sun) Deliver something special to folks who are working and/or recovering at local hospital.

I am not letting this stress me out at all! We haven't done the 3rd one because there is a particular man we want to bless and it hasn't worked out yet. We also changed the 6th one. We had gone out to dinner that night and when we were leaving, we saw the lights on at the military recruiting office. I said, "We should give them the candy canes instead!" Every one was excited about it, so we did! We went into each of the offices for the Navy, Army, and Marines (the Air Force are at a different location) and gave them candy canes and told them that we appreciate what they are doing and we know how tough their job is since before we moved here my husband was recruiting. They were so nice and really appreciated us coming in and then showered my kids with gifts! Balls, bracelets, pencils, and stickers! It felt really great and it was REALLY random, since we decided to do it so last minute!

I read about others on my facebook or other blogs doing the same thing! To know that there are so many people all over the place doing random acts of kindness for just makes me so happy! Today a friend pointed me to this blog and it was just another smile for my day!

I love being able to teach my kids about giving to others! As they say on Yo Gabba Gabba...try it, you'll like it!


Lisa said...

Heather, I LOVE this lift! These ideas are so simple and practical, but I don't think I would have thought of them. Thanks for sharing!

Many blessings!

Courtney DeFeo said...

Great ideas! So glad we are all on the same team doing so much good in the name of Jesus!

Jenifer said...

Great list Heather!

Mrs. H said...

I definitely missed the Thanksgiving service this year since we were in California ... the fun of sorting the food and seeing what people brought! One time we found a frozen turkey (!?) which is why they make sure to go through all the food RIGHT away instead of waiting till Friday!! What a blessing to your kids to be able to learn how to bless others out of their gratitude. So much more pleasant than Black Friday hog-shopping!