December Challenge

December 3, 2013 § 2 Comments

I love the holiday season. This is my favorite time of year. 

Yesterday while waiting in line at the post office a mother came in with her toddler and 5 week old infant. She was trying to squeeze in one last errand before heading home for naps and feedings. She was tired, holding herself together well, but experienced Moms know that she was stressed and ready for a break. So I gave one to her. I let her cut in line in front of me. 

It hasn’t been all that long since I was exhausted to the bone with two small children, sleep deprived, and being pulled in all directions. To her, I was an angel (her words, not mine). To others, I was beyond kind. To me, I was selfish. I thought of someone else and it made me feel better. 

That random act of kindness is making me feel good today, too, so I decided to have a Christmas Challenge. Every day for the month of December, I’m going to do something nice for a stranger. And yes, I realize we should do that year round, but this occurred to me yesterday and I’ve gotta start somewhere. Buy someone a cup of coffee. Let a person that needs extra help get in front of you. Let the grocery store bagger help the mother with kids to her car instead of yours. You get the idea.

In addition to making myself feel good, I think this will set a good example for my kids. I hope so. I want them to grow up to be kind and generous people, and the best way to do that is to learn it from me. 

Happy Holidays, people! Now go do something nice for a stranger. It’ll make your day, their day, and will inspire others. 

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§ 2 Responses to December Challenge

  • Sarah says:

    Love the idea!

  • Charlotta says:

    Hi Patty,

    Even though I follow your blog, I apparently don’t have a WordPress account, because I couldn’t leave a comment – just wanted to say I like the idea, especially what you said about the importance of setting a good and kind example for your boys. It amazes me how many parents don’t seem to realize that EVERYTHING they do and say become models for what their kids will become. Like when they yell at them, hit them, or jerk them around for fighting or arguing or being loud or not following directions (or usually just being bored because the same parents expect them to act like little adults when the kids are way too young to sit still or be still or quiet). I realize that parents often don’t have other options than to bring the kids along, and that parents often also are tired and frustrated. But unlike the kids, they are adults and do have the option of planning ahead. They can and should see the big picture. Stop and take a deep breath, think before you act, bring some toys along, and if you don’t want your kids to solve problems by hitting, don’t do it yourself. Likewise, if you want your kids to be nice to others, do it yourself – show them how to live their lives!

    How else are they supposed to learn?

    Sorry for the rant, I know I’m not qualified to give parenting advice since I’m not a parent, it just drives me crazy sometimes! Especially in light of what I know happens to my Little Sister (from Big Brothers and Big Sisters) I know she could’ve had so much more potential if she’d had a nurturing and loving home than the chaotic battlefield she’s forced to deal with.

    Keep up the good work on those boys! Hope to see you in February! Charlotta

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