I have been dreading my 35th birthday for awhile. I know, it's seems like a weird age to get hung up on, but for me, it's the end of an era-- the end of the having babies era. I love the size of our family-- it's perfect for us-- but still, that part of my life is over...
So, I decided to take the focus off of me for my birthday. With a bit of Pinterest inspiration, I decided to do 35 random acts of kindness the month of my 35th birthday. As a side note, my husband lost his job at the very end of April, just days before my challenge was to begin, so I had to get very creative to avoid spending much money.
1. I let someone go ahead of me in line at Aldi.
2. Ruby and I left carrots for the bunnies in our backyard (totally her idea!).
3. I drove the speed limit for an entire day.
4. I sent brag letters to the kids' principal concerning their fabulous teachers this year.
5. Instead of one chapter, I read Ruby an entire book one night for night time story.
6. I shared unneeded coupons with others.
7. I took a casserole to a busy friend.
8. Eli, Ruby, and I picked up trash on the People Trail.
9. I picked up trash that had fallen out of the neighbor's toter while I was on my morning walk.
10. I turned off a neighbor's broken hose that was leaking huge amounts of water into their yard when they were at work.
11. I left some of my old magazines in a doctor's office waiting room.
12. I left one of my favorite books in a doctor's office waiting room, along with a letter explaining why it was my favorite and a prayer for the person who picked it up.
13. I gave away my Aldi cart (If you aren't familiar with Aldi, you "pay" 25 cents to use a cart, and receive the quarter back when you return it).
14. I (almost) donated blood. (I was there. The needle was in my arm, but I wasn't bleeding fast enough, so I was turned away. When Jason saw the huge bruise on my arm he told me I totally deserved to count it!)
15-18. Ruby, Eli, and I left dollar bills in the toy aisle of the dollar store.
19- 21. We left snacks for waiting parents in the day surgery area of Riley Children's Hospital.
22- 24. We gave 3 McDonald's gift cards to a cashier (at the Riley Hospital McDonald's) to give to the customers of her choice.
25. For almost donating blood, I was given a Panera gift card. So I immediately drove over to Panera and gave it to the next customer in line.
26. I moved neighbors' delivered newspapers from the edge of their driveways to their front porches.
27- 30. I left baked goods on 4 neighbors' porches with a note that said "Random Act of Kindness"-- Pass it On!
31. We entertained a busload of children in our living room during a tornado watch.
32. I took bugs outside instead of smooching them in the house.
33. I put change in the Riley bucket at Walmart.
34. I put my own and someone else's cart away at the grocery store.
35. I made a dessert for a community center dinner (which is hosted for low-income families).
I saw two things happen during this month of RAOK. 1. I stopped caring so much about turning 35 and 2. I saw a change in my children. On June 1st, Eli saw me point out to a budget-conscious shopper at Walmart where the $5 hula-hoops were instead of the $8 one. I did not think a thing about it, but my wise and wonderful 10 year old told me it was a RAOK. I said to him, "I don't even think about it that way. To me, it's just the right thing to do". I hope that moment, and many other moments they participated in, have left a lasting impact of them. I know they have on me!