First of all, I have to say that December is a crazy busy month to attempt to complete 25 Random Acts of Kindness for our family. We are busy and stressed out and giving back isn’t top of mind. Which is why this is so good for us!
It’s almost easier to do an Act of Kindness as it is to keep track of it. And forget getting everyone in my family to complete one per day. I think that is a great goal but not feasible for us right now. Completing one a day as a family will have to do.
So my upshot is: do it but be kind to yourself. Good enough is … good enough. Even thinking about doing an Act of Kindness every day is an improvement for us so baby steps!
This is what we managed to do:
Day 1: Played Secret Santa for a child in need that my friend matched me up with through her church. This little girl is 4 years old and likes Elsa, Dora and Disney movies. I went shopping with PickyKidPix and we got her these toys and books:
Day 2: Grasshopper and Sensei donated her own money towards a fundraiser at school for the Ski Team.
Day 3: My son filled up a water bottle for his sister when she was rushing to get ready for a volleyball tryout.
Day 4: PickyKidPix baked cookies for the girls who came to the soccer practice held at our house.
Day 5: Dropped off a small bag of food items at my bank for a local food pantry.
Day 6: When I drove to school, I waited to let a little girl cross the parking lot at school but when she waited for another car to pass besides me. She didn’t notice a car backing up in front of her because she was looking to the right at incoming cars. I honked like crazy, then apologized to the mother of the little girl for the noise telling her I was paranoid about her getting hit by a car. One of those slow motion moments when your heart gets caught in your throat. Luckily, all’s well that ends well! Phew!
Day 7: Picked up dog poop at the dog park that did not come out of my dog.
Day 8: Posted on Special Surfer Night in hopes of spreading the word of free surfing lessons/experiences for Special Needs kids who can get to Kennebunk, Maine (or anyone who would like to volunteer for this great event).
Day 9: Used my social media to help a local Boston charity:
Friends, this holiday season, please consider helping kids living in poverty. Boston-metro nonprofit Catie’s Closet is looking for gently worn clothes – especially winter coats. Together, we can #LiftUpKids. Click the link for more information and how to donate. Thank you. >> http://bit.ly/liftupkids
Day 10: My son and I did a CWIST educational challenge to earn Snap Circuit Jr. STEM toy for a child in need. He completed this Prime Number worksheet. This was an awesome experience and next year I plan to do it with all three of my kids!
Day 11: Held the door for kids and parents at the school drop off.
Day 12: Does controlling my usual road rage count? I am trying to be extra patient and count to ten before getting annoyed by drivers on the road. This, my kids tell me, is a big improvement from getting out of the car to *ahem* complain to them about their rudeness in excessively honking me for no reason.
Day 13: Stay At Home Educator inadvertently lost her entire email subscriber base due to a technical error when switching providers. I’ve done these kind of seafood that cost me half my traffic before so I can empathize! To help her out, I subscribed and posted on Facebook and Google + to try to help her regain them.
Day 14: Cheered for the opposing team when they did something awesome. I try to do that at every game, even when we’re losing.
Day 15: Gifted a signed book to my son’s teacher from last year because I know she loves them. I always run into her at author events, and she told me I had given her the entire Platypus Police Squad series enscribed to her! I guess I go to a lot of Jarrett Kroscozka events! She teaches 3rd grade and it’s perfect for them; they study mystery writing and it’s a third grade level book!
Day 16: PickyKidPix won $1 from a lottery ticket and donated the money to the Salvation army. This reminds of the chapter book Bingo Summer except our lottery ticket win wasn’t for millions!
Day 17: Removed the trash from the Chinese Dragon greeting the Asian Supermarket, food court and Ramen restaurant. It looks like the dragon is smoking but no, that’s a plastic trash bag.
Day 18: Helped author Clara Bowman-Jahn on her book project via Thunderclap. A thunderclap is a big social media Blitz where everyone supports the book via Facebook or Twitter.
I am trying to raise awarness of my picture book, Edmund Pickle Chin , right here before Christmas as maybe a last minute presesnt for Christmas.
I tweeted: “I Just supported @Cbojahn with An abused donkey finds love At @thunderclapit #amwriting”
Day 19: I let all the cars in front of me that I encountered today.
Day 20: I spent the day creating a Multicultural Book List and Resource Guide for Educators and Parents for the Multicultural Children’s Book Day website. I hope this helps everyone find the multicultural book for kids that they need. It’s organized by topic, country and book genre. I also included a linky so anyone can add a great book list or book extension.
Day 21: My husband thanked the volunteer at Weston Reservoir who restocks the free dog poop bags.
Day 22: Grasshopper and Sensei loaned out her spare pencils to three kids at school.
Day 23: My son held the door for kids and parents at school.
Day 24: PickyKidPix shared her chocolate caramels with kids on the school bus.
Day 25: I recycled the plastic shopping bags.
Whew! That was harder than I thought it would be but also more rewarding than I’d hoped. Next year, I’ll try to get the family more involved but I’m glad we did it. Happy holidays to you and yours!
BEST #OWNVOICES CHILDREN’S BOOKS: My Favorite Diversity Books for Kids Ages 1-12 is a book that I created to highlight books written by authors who share the same marginalized identity as the characters in their books.