At the beginning of this year, a friend of mine asked people to join her in completing 39 acts of kindness for her final year of being in her 30's.
My first 10 are here.
I don't want this post to be boastful. That isn't my intent at all. I've really enjoyed breaking out of my box and finding ways, which are often very small, to be kind.
11. I got gas for Kenny in his car. Getting gas is one of my least favorite "chores", making this act of kindness even more of a big deal.
12. I loaned our dog crate to a family that we don't know that was looking for an extra dog crate for their dog that had hip surgery. They had our crate for 3 months. It was a total leap of faith since I had no outside connections to this family. The crate was returned with out any issues.
13. I loaned our small/extra tent out to another couple that I didn't know. They were looking to go camping for the weekend, but didn't have a tent and normally sleep in their car. I loved that our tent was getting out and being used. They ended up repaying my kindness with a 6 pack of hard cider and chocolate! That was totally unexpected.
14., 15. and 16. I helped along with other friends preparing a meal at Ronald McDonald's house for families that have kiddos in Children's Hospital. Serving up food to these families was really humbling and you find yourself so grateful for healthy kiddos.
17., 18., 19., 20., and 21. I sent 5 cards to 5 special people in my life.
22. I baked some muffins and gave a couple to a friend.
23. I delivered a cupcake to a friend for Mother's Day.
24. I delivered a cupcake to Adalyn's speech teacher for Teacher Appreciation Day.
25. I delivered a cupcake to my new co-worker that I had never meet on Teacher Appreciation Day.
26. Our family participated in helping to make hundreds of "blessing bags" at our church.
27. - 35. We purchased 10 of these blessing bags and have been handing them out to people we see on the corner in need. We handed out 8 out of 10 of them so far. It feels really good to know when you pull up to someone in need you have a way to help them.
36. I loaned someone, that I don't know, my two ceramic tea pots for a tea party they were attending.
37. I made a necklace and gifted it to a friend, just to show her how special she is.
38. I wrote a card to our Pastor to express my gratitude in his dedication and commitment to our church.
39. I passed on clothes that Adalyn had outgrown to a friend.
40. I picked up a free pair a jeans that I saw that I thought a friend of mine's daughter would like to have.
41. I paid for someones order at Starbucks.
42. I shut the door of a car for a little girl who has having problems closing it behind her in the car line at school.
43. I took some banana bread to Shane's teacher at the end of the 1st day of school.
44. Shane and I volunteered at Food Lifeline and bagged up granola and coffee beans to be given out to families in need.
45. We delivered cookies to our new neighbors when they moved in.
46.+ I joined a Facebook group called "Buy Nothing Kirkland". The Buy Nothing Project started on Bainbridge Island over a year ago as a way to gift your neighbors items that you don't need or want any more. This group has been amazing. I've gifted over 20+ quality items to my neighbors. Things that we don't need any more, but others do. It goes directly to someone living in my community and saves these items from the landfill or moving out of our community. In turn, I've been gifted amazing things as well. This summer all of us were able to bike ride together because we were gifted a bike for Kenny, a new helmet for myself and Adalyn. That just is the tip of the iceberg in the BNK world. There are over 150 Buy Nothing Projects. There may just be one in your neighborhood!
It takes a bit of time to list and gift these items, but that extra step and time truly is the point of acts of kindness.
It may just take an extra second or two to complete an act of kindness. Sometimes it takes longer. But in the end that act of kindness blossoms and blooms and becomes this wonderful thing floating and shifting in the world. The lines are blurred on really how much or how far an act of kindness can go.