Sunday, June 5, 2016

Spreading Kindess

Ready to lend our helping hands! 
I knew keeping up with this blog would be tough, but I'm only four days behind so progress, right? This last week has been nothing short of crazy and busy but we managed to get in our act of kindness and a bit of fun girl time while doing it.

Let's start off with some food for thought:

Did you know that 15.3 million children lived in food-insecure households in 2014?

The USDA defines "food insecurity" as the lack of access, at times, to enough food for all household members. In 2011, households with children reported a significantly higher food insecurity rate than households without children: 20.6% vs. 12.2%.

According to The Galveston County Food Bank's website, Feeding America estimates that roughly 53,660 Galveston County residents are in need of emergency food assistance in a single year. That is 1 in 5 of our neighbors in Galveston County, compared to the national average of 1 in 6.
Breaking apart toothbrushes for our care packages.

These are peoples babies, y'all. Yes, I get it, get a job. Do better for yourself and your family.

Ok, actually, no, I don't get it. THESE ARE PEOPLE'S BABIES! We don't know everyone's life circumstances. We don't know what people have been through. Sure people make bad decisions, but why can't we sometimes choose to look beyond those decisions...or to realize that those precious, perfect babies are victims of circumstance? Can't we choose to be the hands and feet of Jesus.

This household lives a comfortable life. We are privilege beyond measure. Maybe even a bit entitled and often in need of a reality check.

And that's why this week's project was so perfect for Lainey and I to participate in for our Summer of Kindness Act 2.

Last week, we volunteered with an organization I love and have been a member of for 6 years. The program works to provide food for children in food-insufficient homes. There so many aspects to this program, including tutoring, book distribution and more, but we participated in a one-night stuffing event. I took the mini-me down to our building to fill bags with toiletries and snacks to send home with kids to help them get through their weekend.

Can you imagine not knowing where your next meal is going to come from? Worse, can you imagine not knowing where your BABY'S next meal will come from?

Lainey and I helped stuff 65 bags to send home with kids who live in food-insufficient homes. On the way down there, she had no interest in helping. She was concerned that the kids will want to take her toys or her own food -- we are doing this project for a reason, y'all -- but once we got there, she was ready to work!

She stuffed and stuffed until she broke a sweat. I don't think she truly understood what we were doing, this act may have been above her maturity level a bit, but she did it. She worked hard and she was proud of herself. And that's a lesson, too.

Kindness is something I have to work on every second of every day. I am short-tempered and I lack patience entirely. If I want to teach my daughter to be kind, genuine, compassionate woman, it starts with me. So maybe this project is to teach me to be kind and to think of others first just so she can be witness to it.

Week 2, that's a wrap.

Catching a quick rest -- on the Pilates Reformer -- post volunteer bath.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Give Kindness, Receive Kindness

Today the babies and I went to lunch at some of the new restaurants that were part of our awesome new mall expansion. We headed out with some sweet friends to let the kids play and enjoy some mommy time. I've been thinking a lot about how our actions are contagious. I notice that when I am frantic and stressed, so are my kids. But when I am agreeable and relaxed, they are as well.

This Summer of Kindness that we are embarking on is something that I hope will become a habit more than a summer-long venture.

Today I was so aware of my reactions to people. When a lady literally ran me down with her motorized scooter at Walmart, I wanted to pounce on her with every vile word I could come up with. Instead, I simply said, excuse me and went about my business. Guess what? Lainey noticed. She even asked if it made me mad.

Of course it did, but I explained to her that we had no idea what that lady's day was like or what life was dealing her. Did she truly not see me? I don't know. But our reactions are everything.

I was reminded that some people can be mean. Some people are oblivious to others.

Then we went to lunch and I was reminded how great people are.

When I went to the restroom to change a VERY frustrated almost 2 year old, I found this little gem in the changing table. Someone who thought that another mom may need a little help.

You never know how big or little of an impact a small gesture can make. We can truly never know what others are experiencing, so why not try to be the joy in someone else's day?

Be kind, friends. Let's see where this takes us.

Monday, May 30, 2016

A Summer of Kindness

This blog has never had my full attention. It just hasn't. No reason in particular. I love to write but I am scattered by nature and having to plan something out -- like a blog -- takes a lot out of me. Yesterday my daughter and I did something pretty cool and a random lady suggested I blog about it. She looked at me and said:

"Write this down somewhere, somewhere you won't forget about it and somewhere she will have the opportunity to remember it. You're doing a good thing, momma."

So here I am. I keep a journal to each of my kids that I started when I was pregnant with each but this seemed worthy of blogging. I mean, I'm not promising you will ever get a follow up, but it's a start.

This summer, my 4-year-old daughter Lainey and and I are setting out to have a Summer of Kindness. As humans, as sinners, we are, by nature, selfish people. I am selfish. My kids are selfish and it's a trait I refuse to let run my home. So we are setting out to change that culture in our home. Each week, Lainey and I -- with sweet Hudson in tow -- will set out to do a random (or planned) act of kindness. We are searching for ways to serve other people. We want to think of them first, not ourselves.

To be honest, when I first brought this up to her, her response was "WHY?".

And that's when and how I knew I was doing the right thing. Lainey is a sweet kid. She is genuinely funny and she is not mean. She is brave and wise beyond her age. She is sensitive and she feels emotions so big. I truly admire her spirit. But as Christians and people striving to be better than we are, it's important that I instill the need to serve and to provide a better example to my kids. We are too blessed to not serve others well.

Yesterday we woke up early -- that's a trend with my kids -- and we decided to try our hand at baking some dairy free cupcakes to practice for my son's upcoming second birthday and it came up that all of our first responders were spending the holiday working instead of with their family. We decided that this was the perfect first duty in our Summer of Kindness.

My sweet girl mixing her batter. Homemade, dairy free vanilla cupcakes. 

Adding her icing. It came out a bit runny but, hey, we are new to
 this diary free lifestyle so whatevs.
From start to finish, except for the oven parts, Lainey did it all! She mixed the batter, poured the cupcakes, iced and decorated them. I was so proud of her. I have such fond memories of baking with my grandma and to see her truly enjoy and take her time doing this was so special for me.

We delivered a dozen cupcakes to our local police station to thank them for keeping us safe this holiday weekend and always. I truly feel our police force is under appreciated. It's a hard job that puts their life on the line daily and keeps them away from their families. If you don't know an officer, I really don't think you truly see what it takes. We love our officers and were so happy to present them with a fun, yummy little snack to get them through the day and I was so proud of my girl for making the delivery! She was a tad shy but the officer was kind and thankful and as soon as we got in the car, she was so proud of herself! I am always proud of my girl and she truly does leave a little sparkle wherever she goes but I am hoping that our Summer of Kindness will bring out something in her that makes her radiate kindness wherever she goes.

Each week we will set out to do something that serves another. Be it small or large, we are on mission this summer. The best way to tell others you love them, are thinking about them and the best way to tell people about Jesus is to show them. So join us this summer as we make it a Summer of Kindness.

The Rest Is Still Unwritten
My photo
Freelance Writer. Online Boutique Owner. Mommy of a boy and a girl. Always stir crazy. A schedule hater and free time lover.

Designed By:

Munchkin Land Designs Elements by Amy Teets Designs
Designed by Munchkin Land Designs • Copyright 2012 • All Rights Reserved