The Life of a Home Mom

Paying It Forward, One Card at a Time

About two weeks ago something got inside me after hearing so many people talk about their troubles, then to top it off for weeks I have been watching that Facebook post that talks about commenting on someone’s post and they’ll send you something but you have to agree to do it to 10 other people, etc. Originally I wanted to do this little meme but to me that isn’t as nice as it could be so I ignored all those posts. I kept thinking about it though, for those that know me, know I love paying-it-forward in one form or another. But this was really, really getting to me.

Earlier this week I knew what I wanted to do, I was going to write something nice inside each letter telling the  person how special they are, that someone was thinking of them, or just to smile. Every envelope I stuck them in said smile too. My kids caught me writing in all these cards and asked what I was doing, so I thought for a moment if I was even going to tell them but thinking back to all the times in the past I have included them in paying-it-forward I decided I’d let them in on my little secret. Once I told my kids they smiled and said “That’s sweet” and went about their business.

For me though, I couldn’t wait for them all to go off to school and I could get out in town and deliver my pressure cards to random strangers. Okay, not all of them were random strangers, some I actually knew who they were going to but that’s all when things changed. I drove up to get my chocolate chip frap from McDonald’s and couldn’t find any of the people on my list. Instead I left a card in a random place that people will visit it often. I didn’t stick around to see the face that would get it, instead I headed home. I felt good about it and hoped it would make someone smile. On my way home though I got stopped at every light and then I got stuck behind the slowest driver.

At first I was irritated but then I saw the UPS truck was at my house, in fear I’d miss him I quickly drove over the big bumps that you drive down on a street, he was just getting in the van when I pulled up and yelled, “Wait, I’ll sign for it if I need to do it.” I thought for sure he would continue to ignore me but slowly he got out of his seat and went to get it. He looked upset.

As I signed for it the card dropped between my legs, I went to pick it up and realized he was the next person to get my card. I signed and handed him the car driving off to my spot. As I was lifting Nicoli out of his carseat and into my arms the UPS man drove up, rolled down his window and said “Yes ma’am you just made my day.” My heart jumped, it felt so good to hear those words. I had made someone smile, well he had just did the same to me.

Once the kids got home I told them what happened, they wanted to do it now. Instead I had them go with me to the store and leave a card at the RedBox Machine. I was about to drive off when another car blocked me. Now I had never wanted to see any of the faces of the people that got them, I wanted to stay anonymous and I never wanted to know who they were. It was just my good deed. We got to watch as the next person came to the Redbox, get the letter, open it up smile from ear to ear and put it back for the next person.

This felt great and my kids loved it. They now want to pass out cards at our local church, but secretly. Myself, I just think this is the coolest. I did explain they should never approach someone they don’t know but they could leave them in random places but never to expect them to know it was you because that makes it more meaningful. Oh to top it off I discovered after starting this that this is Random Acts of Kindness week. How cool is that?

18 thoughts on “Paying It Forward, One Card at a Time

  1. beautiful story!! very inspiring!

  2. Fabgrandma says:

    How nice of you to do that. And yes, when you make someone smile, it always returns to you.

  3. Jennifer @ Mom Spotted says:

    What a sweet thing for you to do for people. I’m glad the UPS guy circled back to let you know too!

  4. the best part is how much my kids want me to write more cards and just drop it off at random places. I love this. We went to Walmart the other day and someone had left sticky notes all over that said stuff like “God Loves You” and “Your smile is beautiful” and of course my older daughter said, “Oh mom look what you have started.”

    Yesterday the UPS man dropped off a package, when he did I noticed it was the same one as before. He looked at me as he handed me the package and said, ‘Eliza right?” I nodded my head and went to go in and he said, “Eliza, Thank you again for that card, it really made my day.” <3

  5. That felt great, I never intended on watching anyone, I had originally just planned to drop them and go.

  6. I loved watching my kids when they saw that lady get the card. It really felt great to see them smile over it.

  7. I think this is so sweet, and great idea to include your kids! I was the recipient of an anonymous random act of kindness last year and I wish I could tell the person how lovely it was of them!

  8. Lisa - Between the Kids says:

    This is so neat!! Just this monday , which was my sons 7th birthday, a random stranger bought my son a pair if bright red Vans (shoes) just because he was admiring them. Made his birthday!!

  9. What a great idea. I love it!

  10. Nicole Brady says:

    What a fantastic idea to leave cards randomly. A few years ago, I came out of Walmart to something on my windshield. Of course, I was frustrated because I hate flyers on my window. To my surprise, it was a $5 Starbucks gift card. I’ve always thought about doing the same but never have actually done it. Love that you have!

  11. This is awesome! I so…want to do this. I just have to figure out what I would like to write.

  12. Jennifer @ My Sweet Sanity says:

    What a great idea and it sounds like so much fun!

  13. That is an excellent idea! I definitely want to try this, too.

  14. I love this!! I send little random notes in the mail all the time – but its always to people I know. I love the idea of doing it anonymously to strangers!

  15. Mommy Has A Life says:

    GREAT idea!! You have awesome kids, by the way– for them to want to do this too 🙂 #GoodJobMom

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