Random Acts of Kindness

Three months ago I had the idea to do 35 Random Acts of Kindness by the time I turn 35.  I am happy to report I finished all 35 acts with a week to spare.

Making my initial list was a little hard as I was having trouble thinking of 35 things to do.  Once I started doing them more seemed to come to me and it was easier to do.  Some have been repeated but to different people.

I used Alex a lot to help with these.  If it involved actually giving something to someone, I had him hand it to the person.  I know he is a little young to understand the concept, but hopefully some of it will stick in his brain as he gets older.

Here is my list of what we have done over the last 3 months.  It is not a list of the order I completed them, but just a master list of all the things done.  I hope something speaks to you and gives you inspiration to do it for someone else.

  1. Stickers left on a kids jacket at the library
  2. Cupcakes for neighbor couple
  3. Popcorn at the Redbox machine
  4. $5 gift card at the gas pump
  5. M&M’s for the police station
  6. M&M’s for someone at the computer at the library
  7. Cookies for the mailman
  8. Quarters left at the gumball machine
  9. $1 bills in the kid aisle at the Dollar store
  10. Cupcakes to the neighbor family
  11. Bag of Book Worms you eat as you read for a kid at the library
  12. Visited family member we don’t see that often
  13. Bought a friend lunch
  14. Asked a neighbor questions about their new dog
  15. Give a person a compliment
  16. Left bubbles at the park
  17. Thank you comment for an online purchase for a small business
  18. Donated tie blanket to the Linus Project
  19. Donated clothes
  20. Card and flowers for a coworkers last day
  21. M&M’s for neighbor police officer
  22. Easter card for relative
  23. Participated in The Darkest Night of Your Life 4k
  24. Gave child glow stick at 4k run
  25. Purchase from Hope’s Closet clothing store
  26. Gave candy to worker at Hope’s Closet
  27. Gave M&M’s to family at store for getting us a cart
  28. Gave candy to librarian after story time
  29. Donated money to Vets
  30. Dinner for neighbor after surgery
  31. Cookies to Police station
  32. Bracelet for neighbor
  33. Walk with residents at homeless shelter
  34. Cookie to Wal-Mart greeter
  35. Cookies to lady at church

 

Remember, we were put here to love one another and help each other out.  Be the reason someone smiles today.

Make it a great day,

Jen

Advertisements

Are you up for the challenge?

I have been decorating cookies for a while now.  I have done some cute cookies.  But I seem to always look at someone else’s work and think “Wow, they are really talented.  I could never do that.”  First off, I should never compare myself to anyone else.  We are all wonderful in our own way.  And maybe someone is looking at my work as I am looking at another’s thinking it is the best thing since sliced bread.

I thought the other day about why I couldn’t do that.  Sure they may have more experience under their belt.  Sure they may be decorating cookies on a more frequent basis than my every so often day.  But really it boiled down to I never gave myself the confidence to step up to the plate and try.

I bought the cutters needed and decided to try and challenge myself with a little more difficult cookie.  LilaLoa had a wonderful tutorial with a video for me to reference which made it seem possible.  I love decorating videos and picture step by step tutorials.  The step by step guides are great for when I am at the counter decorating so I know what step to do next.

I am so happy I went ahead and tried.  I am so happy with the results of my unicorns!!

IMAG2170

I was so excited by it I decided to make another set as I was off for 4 days and had the time.  I then chose the mermaid set that was seen by Sweet Sugarbelle.  She also has a great tutorial for the mermaids and mermaid tails.  I made a couple extra cookies with the first set to try the mermaids to see how they would go before making a full batch.  I have never done that before and I was glad for the practice run.  It helped me see what I needed to change with her.

IMAG2171

I really liked how the second set turned out as well.  Boy am I glad I tried stepping out of my comfort zone.

IMAG2179

We boxed the mermaids up and gave them to our neighbor to bring to work for my Random Act of Kindness.  He is a police officer and we wanted to say thank you to him and his fellow coworkers for all they do for the community.

IMAG2180

You cannot succeed in something if you don’t push past the hard parts.  Success comes from overcoming a challenge.  What will you succeed at today?

Make it a great day,

Jen

 

After workout Tabata HIIT

A month  ago I decided to sign up for a half marathon for this coming May.  I have always followed Hal Higdon’s training programs.  I started doing his 12 week program, which I was already a week behind.

Needless to say, running has been the main focus lately.  I am doing 2 shorter runs during the week and one long run on the weekends.  I have been lazy lately and not always working out on the other days during the week.

Today I decided to change it up.  I am going to try to lift weights Monday and Wednesdays and will run Tuesday, Thursday and Saturdays.

I found an upper body workout that was posted here previously.  After I thought I would do a little HIIT to get my heart pumping at the end.

Set your Tabata timer for 40 seconds on, 10 seconds rest for 8 rounds.

Jumping Jacks

Skaters

Quick Feet

Heismans

Repeat.

Make it a great day!

Jen

Random Act – Police Station

It is Holy week.  My cousin is finishing his college in Kansas.  I thought he would like receiving a card from family around Easter as he is away from home.  I put the card in the mail and hope it arrives this weekend for Easter.

I also decided to bring packs of M&Ms to the police station here in town.  I made a little tag saying thanks and stapled it to the candy.  I put them in a bucket and dropped them off.

IMAG2012

I gave them to the same lady as when I brought the Easter cookies a couple of weeks ago.  She remembered me and commented how much she loved the cookies!  Not only did I put a smile on some officer faces, but that comment she gave me for the cookies brightened my day more than she knows.  That is the joy of decorating.  Is hearing how much people love them.  If I could I would make them cookies every week if it put smiles on their faces.

IMAG2013

Make today great,

Jen

Random Act of Kindness-Library

I have done several random acts of kindness so far in my first week of Doing 35 acts by my 35th birthday.

Alex and I had to go to the library to return books.  He is 2 and loves stickers.  I have a book of Cars stickers that are his favorite at the moment. I took a page of stickers and put them in a baggie with a RAOK card in the back.

IMAG2001

IMAG2000

I also bought a bag of M&Ms.  I put a couple of packs of candy in a baggie and tied the card around it with ribbon and we sent off to the library.

IMAG1999

We were in the kids section getting new books for Alex.  I originally thought of putting the stickers inside a book.  I then saw a lone kids jacket on the table behind us.  I put the stickers on the jacket and then we headed out to the main area.  Hopefully the kid who found them loves the stickers as much as Alex does.

We went in search of a book for me and someone to give the candy to.  I found an older gentleman at the computer.  As we were walking out I had Alex give the man the candy.  He looked confused at first, but I am sure after he read the card he understood what we just did and I hope it put a smile on his face.

I told this to a friend at work the next day. It had inspired her to do something similar.  She went to lunch and bought a gift card.  She gave it to the bartender with a RAOK card and asked him to give it to one of the customers.  He came back shortly later stating she had inspired him and he is now going to do the same for someone else!  How incredibly wonderful is that!  Not only did I affect two lives directly, but now it has touched at least three other people.  This is why I tell my tales. Not for recognition or a pat on the back for doing something nice.  I share these stories in hopes someone else will be inspired to do the same for someone else.

All it takes is one small act to make a difference in the world.

Make it a great day,

Jen

Random Act – Gas pump

I had to get gas this morning.  I am that person who just wants to be home at night and ends up needing to pump gas in the morning.  Doesn’t matter if it is -20 below.  I am always that person outside in the morning when it is the coldest.  One morning this winter my hair froze in the 5 minutes of me being outside, that is how cold it was.

So, as I was making my smoothie I remembered I was low on gas and needed to stop.  I am glad I remembered at home because I was able to quick cut out a RAOK sign and grab a baggie and tape before heading out.  I need to get a few cards ready and stash them in my purse for the future when I am out and about.

I had to pass the gas station right outside our neighborhood and drive a mile down to the Kwik Trip as I knew they had gift cards.  I went inside to pay for my gas and bought a $5 gift card.  I put it in the baggie and taped it to the pump before leaving.

IMAG1989

It makes me feel good knowing I just put a smile on someone’s face today.  Maybe it is what they were needing to get to work.  Maybe they used it to buy a coffee and a donut.  Who knows.  All I know is I made a difference in the world today.  It doesn’t have to be a huge change, but this one small act will have an impact.

What will you do today to brighten someone’s day?

Make today great,

Jen

Bathroom Remodel

We originally painted our upstairs bathroom a light grey color when we first moved in 5 years ago.  I have wanted to update it for some time, but could never decide what to do.

We finally decided on moving forward with it.  Instead of replacing the vanity I thought I would try to paint it.  I have never painted cabinets before.  There are so many different ways out there to do it.  You can do a combination of sanding, priming, painting etc.  This is the main bathroom we use.  This is also the bathroom Alex takes baths in so it couldn’t be under construction too long.

IMAG1906

I first painted the walls using Valspar Rugged Suede.  A coat of paint can truly change the look of a room.  The room may be small, but there were a lot of small areas to try to paint around.

IMAG1935

Once the paint had dried fully for two days I started on the vanity.  I first started with a bonding primer then used Valspar cabinet paint.

 

IMAG1945

I did not have to sand the wood first which was a big time saver.  I only did one coat of primer.  I probably could have went with two.  I ended up doing three thin coats of the paint.

IMAG1944

It only took a half hour each coat for the vanity, but then I did have to wait in between for dry time.

IMAG1943

We used the same brushed nickel hardware that was on before.  I bought a new shower curtain and purple towels.  I did end up buying a purple rug to match which is not shown.  I think the shower curtain alone really made a world of difference to the room.

IMAG1964

IMAG1963

All that is left is finding a shelf to have Paul make and maybe add a sign or two.  Overall, I really liked the cabinet paint, but I couldn’t imagine doing a whole kitchen.  Props to all of you who have done your kitchen cabinets!

Make it a great day!

Jen