A few months ago I read this blog post and I was inspired to do 40 random acts of kindness for my 40th birthday. I decided to break it up over 4 days to make it more do-able, and less stressful. You guys may not know this about me, but I'm a little socially awkward.... a.k.a. shy. I have a hard time striking up conversation with strangers, and in order to do this thing, and do it right, I was going to have to talk to strangers in order to be a blessing to them.
Thursday (my actual birthday) I...
1) Gave a $20 gift card to an elderly gentleman dining alone at Chili's
2) Made a donation to the Houston area woman's center's race against violence.
3) Called my fave fast food place (I go through there everyday to pick up a sweet tea), asked for the manager and complimented her employees.
4) I paid for the customer in line behind me's order at Chick-fil-a.
5) I pinned "Take what you need" signs. That I found on Kelly Rae's blog.
6) I hid dollars in the toy section of the Dollar tree.
7) I taped money to a red box, with a note that read... "Watch a movie on me."
8) I baked cookies for a friend.
9) I picked my neighbors trash can up from the curb.
10) I posted a give away on facebook.
11) Had lunch at school with the boys (It counts even though I do it every Friday).
12) I left reviews for some of my fave local business on yelp.
13) I voted for my friend in a contest.
14) I let people in front of me in the carpool lane, and was a courteous driver all day (This one was a TOUGHIE!!!)
15) I taped money to vending machines at the local hospital.
16) I took balloons up to the pediatric floor of the hospital.
17) I left books in several waiting rooms at the hospital.
18) I donated coloring books, crayons, and most importantly (according to the nurses) decks of cards to the pediatric floor of the hospital.
19) I mailed a card to a family friend.
20) I sent a card to my boys awesome asst. principle.
21) Sent an encouraging text to a friend.
22) I posted a give away on this blog.
23) I did not complain, tap my foot, or sigh when the woman in front of me spent 5 minutes trying to bring a coupon up on her phone... instead I smiled... and brought the coupon up on my own phone for her, at Michaels.
24) I left stamps at the post office with a note saying, "Please use these stamps to send a letter to someone and let them know how much they mean to you."
25) I offered to let a gentleman go in front of me in line at Target... he declined and then proceeded to yell at the checker, and me for the next 5 minutes.
26) I donated money to The water project.
27) I worked VERY hard to keep a conversation that I had with my mother positive and loving.
28) I left encouraging notes on random cars at Target.
29) I left some dollars in the dollar bins at Target.
30) I made my husband's fave dinner.
31) I got a massage... HEY kindness starts at home people!!!!! Just kidding, and I left a 40% tip.
32) I donated to the food bank.
33) I donated a bag of winter coats.
34) I donated SEVERAL bikes that the boys have outgrown.
35) I made cookies to take up to the boys school.
36) I made up 5 little flower arrangements, and took them to an elderly care center.
37) I sent a card to my fave Aunt.
38) I watched the playoffs with my hubby, even though "The Real Housewives of Atlanta" was on.
39) I called some family and told them that I loved them.
40) I wanted to do something that will be ongoing through out the year, so I decided to volunteer with Literacy Advance of Houston, and teach adults to read or to read better.
Phew, that was quite a list!!! The ones that stuck out to me the most, were the elderly man I bought lunch for, the 5 lovely ladies that I gave flowers to at the elderly care center, and the children I gave balloons to at the hospital. On Sunday I started to get nervous that I hadn't done enough, that I had not done things that were lasting, that I had done to many silly superficial things. I felt like Oscar Schlinderat the end of Schlinder's list (Though much less important). I wanted to do more, give more, REALLY make a change in the lives of others.
Throughout this process I learned that kindness makes you feel so much better than snarkiness. I learned that doing something small things for others, works big changes inside you. I learned that in this crazy, mixed up, world, doing something that makes a person smile, is an amazing feat!!! It may not be world peace... but it'll do!!!!
I do have to say that all of my friends were so kind, and so encouraging to me during this whole process. I can not thank you all enough!!! I got way more than I gave in this entire process!!