Today I’m getting back to the basics with 2 acts of kindness that were so easy to do. As a reminder, one of my original goals with my Christmas Challenge is to disprove a common myth: that giving is expensive. Today was a great example of how even the smallest acts can still bring “joy to the world” and demonstrate genuine kindness and appreciation.
Act #1...Thursday is trash day in our neighborhood. Luckily for me, my husband normally takes care of this chore; however, today I made a special trip out to the curb as well. Before I left for work in the morning, I left a small package next to our recycling bin. Tied with a bow around them, I had a few bottles of water and a Christmas card. It wasn’t much, but I wanted to leave a small surprise for some people who can be easily overlooked…trash men. Unfortunately I wasn’t home when they came to my house this morning, but I hope I was able to give them a fun surprise when they pulled up to my house and finding a package waiting for them. And that’s one of the best things about Christmas: surprising people with unexpected kindness.
Act #2…After reading about how I visited a retirement center, one of my neighbors, Tamara, sent me a message with an idea. “We should get a bunch of neighbors together to go back to the center and sing Christmas carols!” Kindness is contagious. I love Tamara. I was in immediately. While I admittedly have a terrible singing voice, unfortunately for everyone around me, I do love to sing.
The center is set up like a small neighborhood of five houses with 10 residents in each house. We came with Christmas gifts for each house–baskets filled with baked goodies, candy canes, poems and more…plus gifts for all the employees.
In one of the houses we were singing “We wish you a merry Christmas“. The room was filled with smiles. A woman caught my eye. She was sitting at the table, enjoying the song and getting in the Christmas spirit herself. She had a jingle bell necklace hanging from her neck and by the time we hit the second verse she joined in! With a huge smile on her face, she started ringing her necklace, adding some added fun and a festive mood to the song. I loved it.
In each house I looked around at our group singing. I couldn’t help but smile…over half were kids. One of them even brought her violin which set a magical Christmas tone. Ranging from elementary to high school, these kids were energetic and seeing firsthand the true meaning of Christmas…it’s not presents under the tree. Kindness, generosity and love…this is Christmas.
Christmas is right around the corner and tonight proved to me that simplest acts…even bottles of water or singing a carol with friends, can help me stay focused on what makes Christmas truly magical. And while I sang these words many times tonight, they’re worth repeating once more to you…”good tidings to you, and all of your kin…good tidings for Christmas and a happy new year.”